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.
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.
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.
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."
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!
Marketing Specialist, Visit Yuma
YUMA, ARIZONA - Deputy Mayor Knight will proclaim May 5-11, 2019, as National Travel and Tourism Week in Yuma, at the City Council meeting held on Wednesday, May 8th. Observance of the week will include special promotions by Visit Yuma including social media videos and a Sunbelievable photo contest.
Leisure travel accounts for more than three-quarters of all trips taken in the U.S., spurring countless benefits to travelers' health and wellness, creativity, cultural awareness, education, happiness, productivity and relationships. The social media campaign will highlight ways in which Yuma businesses and citizens are positively impacted by tourism and travel to Yuma.
According to Sarah Shields with the U.S. Travel Association, "The average employee takes 17 days of vacation a year, but less than half of that time is used for travel. And Americans want to travel—84% say they haven’t seen enough of their own country."
Shields added, "A road trip or a weekend at the beach not only scratches the travel itch, but studies show that time away can be hugely beneficial to our mental and physical health: 61% of avid travelers are happy with their physical health and well-being, compared to just 39% of those who do not use their vacation time to travel."
Nationally, travelers' spending directly generates tax revenues of $3.4 billion for federal, state and local governments, funds used to support essential services and programs.
Travel supported 15.7 million jobs in 2018 across all U.S. industries--that's 1 in 10 American jobs, making travel the seventh largest employer in the private sector. According to the Arizona Office of Tourism, travel is also among the largest private-sector employers in Arizona, supporting 187,000 jobs in 2017.
Travel to and within Yuma County resulted in nearly $635 million direct travel spending in 2017, supported 6,400 jobs and generated more than $50 million in state and local tax revenues. "Visit Yuma celebrates tourism every day, but we welcome the opportunity to showcase the numerous benefits of travel and tourism," said Linda Morgan, Executive Director of Visit Yuma.
Marketing Specialist, Visit Yuma
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 email@example.com. Thanks for your interest in the Yuma area.