Evening of honors and accolades rally regional tourism Partners as prime time summer travel season approaches in Dauphin County.
HARRISBURG, PA (April 12, 2018) — Tourism Officials with Visit Hershey & Harrisburg (VHH) recognized individuals and local Partner organizations for their outstanding achievements in tourism in the past year during the annual "Tourism Awards" held tonight at the Best Western Premier Hotel & Conference Center.
Approximately 140 of the bureau's Partners In Tourism and local tourism supporters attended the celebration which bureau officials say has become the organization’s “Funofficial” launch of the region’s prime tourism season.
“Everyone looks forward to this annual spring event as a time to recognize bureau Partners and honor local tourism stakeholders who have made great strides in the past year,” said Mary Smith, President and CEO of Visit Hershey & Harrisburg. “This night of celebration has become a fun way to rally our Tourism Partners who are ramping up at this time of year for another busy tourism season.”
Attendees say they enjoy the event as a rare opportunity in this busy industry to reunite and network with their peers in a fun atmosphere, according to Smith.
Keepin’ It Fresh Certificates (13)
The evening began with the bureau presenting “Keepin’ It Fresh” certificates to businesses that completed or initiated renovations, expansions, and improvements this past year.
New Ride in 2017 - Triple Tower
- Hershey Lodge
New Restaurant - Fire & Grain
- The Hotel Hershey
Renovations to the West Tower Guest Rooms and Iberian Lounge
- Penn FC
New Name & Brand for Harrisburg's American Soccer Team
Formerly the Harrisburg City Islanders
- Crowne Plaza Harrisburg Hershey
New Starbucks & Renovations to Guest Rooms, Lobby, Restaurant Twenty-Three, and Meeting Facilities
- Econo Lodge Hershey
Renovations to Lobby, Guest Rooms, Breakfast Area, and Upgrades to Exteriors and New Landscaping
- Days Inn Harrisburg North
Enhanced Building Exteriors and Renovated Guest Rooms
- The Vegetable Hunter
New Boutique Brewery
- Zeroday Brewing Company
New Zeroday Outpost located inside The Broad Street Market
- Fulling Mill Inn
Renovations to Guest Rooms and Upgrades to Interiors and Exterior Space
- Allenberry Resort
Renovations to Restaurant, Guest Rooms, Playhouse, and Meeting Facilities
- Lowee's Group Tours
Innovative Coach Upgrades featuring Streaming Entertainment for Personal Devices
- Holiday Inn Express Harrisburg East
Renovations to Main Lobby, Breakfast Area, Dining Experience, and Meeting Rooms
New Biz On the Block Certificates (10)
The bureau also recognized tourism-related businesses that opened within the region in 2017 with “New Biz On the Block” certificates.
- Grill 22
New Restaurant on Route 22 in Harrisburg
- Mount Gretna Bewery & Red Canoe General Store
New Brewery, Restaurant, and Coffee Shop
- Courtyard by Marriott Hershey Chocolate Avenue
New Hotel in Hershey
- Do You Even Escape?
New Escape Room in Camp Hill
- Cafe Huey on City Island
New Dining Experience on City Island in Harrisburg
- Harrisburg Bike Share
New Bike Rental Service for Residents and Visitors in Harrisburg
- Duck Donuts Hershey
New Delicious Coffee and Donut Eatery in Downtown Hershey
New Health and Wellness Adventure Tours
- The Pantry Cafe
New Restaurant and Eatery inside The Hershey Story, The Museum on Chocolate Avenue
- MeltSPA by Hershey
New Spa located in Downtown Hershey
Milestone Recognition (6)
The bureau recognized several individuals and businesses that have achieved significant milestones in 2017 including three bureau employees for ten and fifteen years of service, two businesses celebrating 70 and 200 years in operation, and a departing member of the bureau’s board of directors for his service to tourism.
200 Years In Service - Millersburg Ferry
70 Years In Business - Koziar's Christmas Village
Service To Tourism - Todd Kohr, Departing Board Member for Visit Hershey & Harrisburg
10 Years (Employee Anniversary) - Kim McKelvy
10 Years (Employee Anniversary) - Justin Martsolf
15 Years (Employee Anniversary) - Gregg Cook
Partner In Tourism Awards (7)
The evening’s main event was the “Partner In Tourism Awards” which recognized individuals, organizations, and events for their outstanding accomplishments from 2017. Each award winner in this category was honored with a short video produced by the bureau to highlight their achievement.
Above & Beyond Award
John Bailey & Bailey Coach
VIP – Very Involved Partner Award
Michelle Hornberger, Dauphin County Parks & Recreation
Excellence In Programming Award
Hershey Harrisburg Wine Country, Signature Events Series
Best New Event Award
Harrisburg Mural Festival, Produced by Mural Sprocket Works
Business of the Year Award
Harristown Development Corporation
New Attraction of the Year Award
J.R. Tobias Museum & Education Center at Lake Tobias Wildlife Park
Lifetime Achievement Award
Frank Gilbert, GM at Hershey Lodge
ABOUT VISIT HERSHEY & HARRISBURG
Visit Hershey & Harrisburg is the official non-profit partnership-based Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) leading economic growth through destination sales, consumer marketing, public relations, and tourism development in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania. The organization, accredited by Destination Marketing Association International (DMAI) since 2010, is committed to actively marketing the tourism assets in the Hershey & Harrisburg Region 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.
Mary Smith, President & CEO of Visit Hershey & Harrisburg 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.