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HHRVB celebrated region's travel & tourism industry May 7-13, 2017

Published: May 8, 2017

HHRVB promoted National Travel & Tourism Week with a full schedule of local events to advocate for one of the region's top industries and to celebrate the 27,000 residents who are employed by tourism.

HARRISBURG, PA (May 13, 2017) — The Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau (HHRVB) hosted a week of special events to celebrate the 34th Annual National Travel & Tourism Week (#nttw17 ) in the region.

The week was first established by a congressional resolution in 1983, and today is organized by the U.S. Travel Association as a platform to raise awareness of the industry’s contributions to the U.S. economy.

Monday, May 8 – City Proclamation

HHRVB kicked-off the week by joining the City of Harrisburg's Marketing & Events Team at City Hall for the reading of a City Proclamation declaring May 7-13, 2017 as National Travel & Tourism Week in the Capital City.

Tourism Week 2017 - City of Harrisburg Proclamation on May 8, 2017

ABOVE (L-R): Rick Dunlap, Dir. of Public Relations; Audrey Bialas, Dir. of Sales; Justin Martsolf, Dir. of Partnership; and Sue Kunisky, VP for the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau receive the Official City of Harrisburg Proclamation declaring May 7-13, 2017 as National Travel & Tourism Week in the Capital City, presented at City Hall on Monday, May 8, 2017 by the Harrisburg's Marketing & Events Team of Devan Drabik, Dir. of Business Development; Jenelle Walker, Social Media & Content Manager; and Megan Roby, Marketing & Events Manager.

Tuesday, May 9 – Legislative Day Reception

The week of celebration continued Tuesday with HHRVB sponsoring the “Taste of the State” reception at the Capitol Complex as part of the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association’s 29th Annual Legislative Day.

The private reception concluded a day of tourism leaders from across the Commonwealth meeting with state lawmakers to educate them on the important economic impact from the travel & tourism industry. In Pennsylvania, tourism provides millions of dollars in state & local tax revenues and supports thousands of jobs across the Commonwealth including the 27,000 jobs in Dauphin & Perry County.

National Tourism Week Legislative Reception 2017ABOVE (L-R): Michael Chapaloney, Exec. Dir. of PA Tourism Office; Audrey Bialas, Sales Dir. (HHRVB); Carrie Fisher Lepore, PA Deputy Secretary for Office of Marketing, Tourism & Film (DCED); PA State Rep. Sue Helm (104th District); Rick Dunlap, PR Dir. (HHRVB); Sue Kunisky, Vice Pres. (HHRVB); and Justin Martsolf, Partnership Dir. (HHRVB) enjoy the 29th Annual PRLA "Taste of the State" legislative reception sponsored by the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau at the State Capitol Complex on Tuesday, May 9, 2017.

Wednesday, May 10 – County Proclamation & Harrisburg Happy Hour Night

On Wednesday morning, the Dauphin County Board of Commissioners presented the bureau with a County Proclamation declaring it National Tourism Week in Dauphin County. See Official Proclamation attached as document.

Mary Smith, President & CEO of HHRVB then presented the Commissioners with awards of recognition for their ongoing support of regional tourism which has allowed the bureau to grow and expand its efforts to market and promote the region as a premiere tourism destination.

Smith called out the Commissioners for their most recent support of the bureau's decision to launch a Sports & Events Authority in 2016. Smith reported the new division's TOP20 Client Events in 2017 would generate an economic impact of $124 million and attract 370,000 visitors to the region this year. Read the Full Report: HHSE TOP20 Client Events 2017.

Travel & Tourism Week 2017 - Commissioner Presentation Group PhotoHHRVB Staff and Board Members joined Dauphin County Commissioners (far right) Jeff Haste and Mike Pries for the County Proclamation and Awards of Recognition presentation at the County Board of Commissioners Meeting on Wednesday, May 10, 2017.

Wednesday evening, several businesses in the City of Harrisburg and Midtown District celebrated Tourism Week with dining & drink specials for Happy Hour with HHRVB sponsoring FREE meter parking from 5-7pm. The promotional night was intended to encourage visitors, residents, and commuters alike to enjoy an evening in the City. Find more info at www.ExploreHBG.com/FreeParking.

Free Parking Newsletter

Friday, May 12 – Traveler Appreciation Day

HHRVB teams took over the Peter J. Camiel Service Plaza on the PA Turnpike and the PennDot Welcome Center on Interstate 81 North in Franklin County to show their appreciation for those traveling to the area. The “Tourism Takeover” at both locations included fun games for all ages with destination-branded prizes. The events provided a valuable opportunity for the bureau’s sales, marketing and communications teams to interact with travelers and gain a deeper understanding of who is traveling to our area and what they plan to see & do while they are here.

HHRVB Team at Turnpike Plaza for National Travel & Tourism Week 2017

HHRVB Staff & Hershey Chocolate Bar Character welcome travelers along the PA Turnpike with fun & prizes on May 12 as the bureau concludes the week celebrating National Travel & Tourism Week 2017. A big thanks to the Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Company for allowing their character to hang with us for the day, taking pictures with all of the travelers on their way to the Hershey Harrisburg Region and all points West of Peter J. Camiel Service Plaza on the PA Turnpike.



Mary Smith, President & CEO of the Hershey Harrisburg Regional Visitors Bureau is available for media interviews regarding the contents of this news release. Please try to make interview requests at least 12-hours in advance. The bureau will make every effort to accommodate all interview requests. Contact Rick@HersheyHarrisburg.org or cell 717.884.3328.


The HHRVB is the official non-profit partnership-based Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) leading economic growth for Pennsylvania’s Hershey & Harrisburg Region through destination marketing and tourism development. The organization, accredited by Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) since 2010, is committed to actively marketing the tourism assets in Dauphin & Perry County to business and leisure travelers both domestic & international. The bureau also leads regional sales efforts to attract meeting & event organizers, sporting event producers, and group tour leaders. For more information go to VisitHersheyHarrisburg.org or call 877-727-8573. Media can use #HHRVB and #HHRVB4Media when tagging stories and social media posts related to the region.


Established by a congressional resolution in 1983, this week of events serves to champion the power of our industry. Travel and tourism professionals from across the nation work throughout the week to promote the impactful contributions their travel markets and organizations make to the U.S. economy. The travel community marks the event in many creative ways, from staging local rallies and conducting media outreach to securing proclamations and resolutions from local governments. The theme for 2017 is Faces of Travel, shining a spotlight on the power of travel by recognizing the more than 15 million people who keep this industry strong in the U.S. Find more about U.S. Travel Association at www.USTravel.org

Author: Rick Dunlap

Public Relations Director
Visit Hershey & Harrisburg
3211 North Front Street, Suite 301 A, Harrisburg, PA 17110