Press Releases


 Yuma, Arizona - Visit Yuma honored local Yuma-area farmers for their partnership with the tourism organization, with its highest award, the annual E.G.R.E.T. award, a its Annual Meeting on June 19.

This past year, Visit Yuma had a special focus on Yuma agriculture that has enlightened many visitors about the importance of Yuma's role in providing food for our country. One of the programs that had the biggest impact was the Field to Feast Tours, which hosted 831 tour-goers on 19 tours throughout the winter season. Local farmers shared their time during their busiest time of the year to welcome participants to their farm and told them about the crops, food safety and technology, among other topics.
At Visit Yuma's Annual Meeting, there was a special salute to farming and the families that make Yuma agriculture great. Visit Yuma and Geoff Montgomery with the City of Yuma produced a video presentation, with many of the farmers talking about the importance of the agriculture and tourism communities working together. The video is available on the Visit Yuma Facebook page.

In lieu of presenting each farmer with an award plaque, Visit Yuma made a $1000 donation to the Arizona Western College Agriculture Sciences Department, to invest in the future of agriculture in the Yuma area.

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Yuma, Arizona - Visit Yuma has announced the election of four members to its Board of Directors. With new programs and new, younger target audiences on the horizon, the board of directors of Visit Yuma recently elected new officers to lead the organization for the next fiscal year.

Louis Scott with Del Outdoor Advertising is currently serving as Chair. Other officers will be chosen when the Board of Directors convenes in July.

Four board seats come up for election by Visit Yuma members each year, with directors elected to three-year terms in June. Incumbents David Carvell who is Branch/Sales Manager at Ahern Rentals, and Deidre Meerchaum, who is the Facilities Manager at Gowan Company, won re-election.

Two new board members join the board this year. Reetika Dhawan is the Dean of Career and Technology at Arizona Western College. Reetika is the recipient of many teaching awards over the years including most recently the AWC Teacher of the Year award, as well as Endowed Faculty Award, NISOD teaching award, AWC Excellency Medal, AWC Star Faculty Award, and Instructor of the Year. Reetika cares about Yuma and wishes to bring her knowledge, energy, and expertise to the Visit Yuma board. Nate Schug is President of Westmoor Electric. He’s been a member of the Caballeros de Yuma for 15 years. He served as El Presidente in 2010-2011. He’s served on many boards, foundations and committees, including Hospice of Yuma, Children and Family Services and El Toro Bowl Committee through AWC.

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Yuma, Arizona - Visit Yuma has announced the selection of Marlene Castillo as its new Membership Manager.  

“Marlene brings a wealth of experience and talent to Visit Yuma, and we think our members will gain from her expertise," says Linda Morgan, the Executive Director of Visit Yuma. “Helping members use the numerous member benefits we offer, and finding the best advertising solutions for target markets in our drive market, national and international reach is all part of a day's work for Marlene. She is savvy at understanding digital advertising placement, which is critically important as we direct more of our efforts to targeted online campaigns. Also, she can advise members about how our print pieces, such as the annual Visitor Guide and maps, and our event sponsorships, will put our members' businesses at the forefront of what visitors see as they plan their trips or are in-market for a stay in Yuma.

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Yuma, Arizona - Visit Yuma has announced the selection of Karen Harris and Jennifer McDonald as its new Marketing Specialists.  

“Jennifer and Karen both bring a wealth of experience and talent to Visit Yuma”, says Linda Morgan, the Executive Director of Visit Yuma. “Both have strong prior connections to Yuma but have recently returned. We are excited about the places we will go with Karen and Jennifer on our team.”

Harris will head up strategy and content creation, while McDonald will be in charge of creative content and communications. They join Gillian Wilkins, who has been with Visit Yuma's marketing team for more than a year. Wilkins will continue to focus on social and electronic media. Both Harris and McDonald recently moved to Yuma, but both have past roots in the city. McDonald's husband is a Marine who was stationed at MCAS Yuma in 2018 after seven years away. Harris and her partner became year-round residents after being winter visitors to Yuma for five years.

Harris previously served 12 years as a board member of the Mat-Su (Alaska) Convention & Visitors Bureau, as well as owning Alaska Garden Gate B&B in Palmer, Alaska, for 16 years. Her background in communications and publishing reaches back to former jobs at Minneapolis magazines and newspapers. Her strong points include web analytics and strategic communications. McDonald is a longtime television journalist with experience in both large and small markets in the Western US.  Her first on-air job as at KSWT-TV, in Yuma. 

Both new additions started in the last week at Visit Yuma. "We hope to take our communications with our members, with our community and with other stakeholders and partners to a new level," said Morgan. "The fresh voices bring synergy and collaboration on this focused and creative team."

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Visit Yuma celebrates US Travel Association's Travel Matters week, May 5-11 

YUMA, ARIZONA - Visit Yuma will be highlighting the benefits of travel through interviews, blogs, and social media posts during the week. Each day, new reasons why travel and tourism benefit our community will be explored through the eyes of those in tourism in Yuma as well as everyday citizens who depend on travel to stay close to family or who see the benefits of tourism. Visit Yuma's Facebook page, as well as postings on Twitter, Instagram and Linked In, will host these interviews and outlooks on travel and tourism.

On Sunday, how travel matters to the economy will be discussed by Shawn Chapman at Sonoran Bikes. Monday, David Negron at the Colorado River State Historical Park talks about how new experiences for a traveler can enrich their lives. Travel is a strong driver of employment in our community, and on Tuesday, Gell Lemmon at Candlewood Suites shares how local employees gain skills and good pay through tourism jobs. Keeping America Connected is the theme for Wednesday, where travelers and  Gen Grosse at Yuma International Airport share their outlooks.  Health and wellness is positively impacted through fresh air, exercise, recreation and fun, of which Yuma offers in abundance. On Thursday, owner Jennifer Herrera at Get Air gives a tour of the newest place in town to get fit. Friday, hometown pride is evident through the great murals around Yuma. Saturday, the series wraps up with a blog by military spouse Samantha Smith, about why travel matters to families.

The "Sunbelievable" photo contest starts on May 5th. Visit Yuma will share locals and visitors' best photos through Instagram. Anyone can submit their best photos of Yuma, with one entry per day by tagging @visityuma on Instagram. The contest closes on May 10th, with winners announced on May 13th. Gift cards from local businesses will be awarded to the top winners, in celebration of all that is picturesque and special about Yuma!

CONTACT: Karen Harris
Marketing Specialist, Visit Yuma

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The Yuma Visitors Bureau is always happy to assist members of print, digital and broadcast media, either on assignment or pitching an idea with a Yuma angle.

Visit Yuma team can suggest itineraries and facilitate visits, or provide you with the inspired details to help nail down an assignment.  We pride ourselves on always going "above and beyond."

You can download background and "anytime" materials below; dated press releases appear "most recent first" at left. Call or email us for photos and B-roll video.

YVB periodically hosts group and individual press trips, and is glad to partner with other Arizona or California DMOs to coordinate a visit to several regions.

For more information, contact Linda Morgan at 928-376-0100 (office), email Thanks for your interest in the Yuma area.

'Anytime' releases:

Around & about - a quick Yuma overview

Brilliant! Yuma wears 'sunniest' label with pride

Last link in river restoration under way


Background info:

Fast Facts About YVB

 Fast Facts About Yuma 

Yuma history - narrative

Yuma historic timeline


Research and statistics

Yuma Winter Visitors Study 2017-2018

Yuma Winter Visitors Study 2017-2018 Executive Summary

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