Louisiana  Pick Your Passion! Travel Pulse Office of Tourism Update
August 9, 2013
Dallas and Houston included in fall media buy
The Louisiana Office of Tourism will launch its fall campaign Sept. 9. Cable and interactive media channels will be used in seven markets: Austin, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Memphis, Nashville and San Antonio. DMOs can buy in with a 1-to-1 match. Those interested must submit participation forms by Aug. 22. Partners' advertisements will run during the Oct. 21 broadcast week. There is a limited number of matches available through the Office of Tourism. Match confirmations will be sent to participating DMOs after the Aug. 22 deadline. For more information contact Misty Velásquez at 225.219.9858 or mvelasquez@crt.la.gov.

Fall 2013 Cable and Interactive Media Markets

Kent House historical marker   Louisiana Historical Marker Program
The Louisiana Historical Marker program commemorates facts, people, events and places prominently identified with the history of the nation, state, or region. Historical markers are privately sponsored and funded. Any individual or group may nominate a location or occasion of historical interest for historical marker commemoration. The application deadline for the Louisiana Historical Marker Program is Nov. 6. All applications must be postmarked by the day of the deadline. No application postmarked after the deadline will be accepted. For more information contact Lynne Coxwell at 225.342.2876 or lcoxwell@crt.la.gov.

Downtown Oak Grove   What's New in Louisiana Fall 2013
The Office of Tourism is updating What's New in Louisiana. Send information on new attractions, tours, trails, restaurants, overnight providers, online tools, apps, major infrastructure affecting visitors and anything else relevant to tourism in your area. The asset does not have to be new it can be improved, expanded or renovated. To submit an asset email Jeff Richard at jrichard@crt.la.gov by Sept. 13. Include the name of the asset, a brief description (3 - 4 paragraphs), physical address, primary contact person and contact information including a website and e-mail address.

Manuel Grau-Diez, New Orleans Welcome Center counselor
Manuel Grau-Diez, New Orleans Welcome Center counselor
  LOT attends Louisiana Foodservice and Hospitality Expo
The Louisiana Office of Tourism participated in the Louisiana Restaurant Association's 60th annual Louisiana Foodservice and Hospitality Expo, Aug. 3 - 5 at the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The expo is a premier foodservice event for the Gulf Coast drawing in more than 11,000 people and featured a wide range of industry products and services in nearly 400 booths. Manuel Grau-Diez, New Orleans Welcome Center counselor was on hand to provide visitor information to vendors as well as information on how to get a restaurant brochure and other information placed in Welcome Centers.

Woodcarvers craftsmenship on display at Greenwood Welcome Center - click to enlarge   Woodcarvers unveil exhibit at Greenwood Welcome Center
The Greenwood Welcome Center unveiled an exhibit of hand-carved wooden panels created by the North Louisiana Woodcarvers Association. The exhibit took 14 months to complete with 16 artists carving 21 frames. Each frame depicts a state symbol-saltwater fish, freshwater fish, flower, insect, vegetable plant, dog, meat pie, doughnut, fruit, mammal, plant, tree, drink, crustacean, amphibian, wildflower, flag, reptile, state symbol, state seal and bird. The participating artists range from ages 14 to 91.

Cover of the Survey of U.S. State Tourism Office Budgets by the U.S. Travel Association   The haves and have nots of U.S. state tourism budgets
Skift - The budgets for the top ten U.S. state tourism offices including Hawaii, Florida, California and Texas represent more than half, or 53.5 percent, of the total budget for all state tourism offices. According to U.S. Travel Association's 2012-2013 Survey of U.S. State Tourism Budgets, the amounts range from $710,000 for Rhode Island to $75 million for Hawaii. Public funding is the primary source of capital with state general funds, lodging and tourism sales tax receipts contributing 91.1 percent, or $622.8 million of the $683.6 million, total budgets.

Gulf charter fishing rebounds   Charter fishing is seeing a rebound
Daily Comet - Local boat captains say charter fishing is showing signs of improvement after the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Many captains saw fewer customers as a result of the spill, but they say recovery has arrived. Marty LaCoste, of Absolute Fishing Charters in Dularge said this is the best year he has ever had. The bulk of his customers come from out of state, he said, which is different but welcome. Charter captains are beginning to see the payoff from advertising campaigns focused on promoting Terrebonne as the Saltwater Fishing Capital of the World, said Sharon Alford, executive director of the Houma Area CVB.

Fontainebleau State Park
Fontainebleau State Park
  State park fees increase
The Advocate - State budget cuts are resulting in increased fees for State Parks. The Jindal administration's budget relies on $1.3 million in self-generated funds from park operations to make up for state dollars taken away. "The state doesn't give us any additional funds to operate with," Stuart Johnson, State Parks director, told the State Parks and Recreation Commission. "It helps us maintain more or less a standstill budget." The self-generated funds will come from a $1 increase in park admission fees and a $2 increase on the rental of campsites at the parks.

Golden Nugget hotel-casino project in Lake Chalres   Golden Nugget Casinos buying Ameristar property
American Press - Golden Nugget Casinos recently announced it has an agreement with Pinnacle Entertainment to purchase the Lake Charles development under construction next to L'Auberge Casino Resort. The announcement comes a week after the state's Gaming Control Board unanimously approved Pinnacle's merger with Ameristar. Golden Nugget said it would complete the hotel-casino complex, which is expected to open in 2014. The project is the last available gaming license in Louisiana.

The Eagle Saloon, a significant early jazz landmark still stands.
The Eagle Saloon, a significant early jazz landmark still stands.
  Opryland in talks to redevelop South Rampart Street into jazz district
NOLA.com - The Downtown Development District has been in talks for the past eight months with the operators of Opryland in Nashville to redevelop New Orleans' 400 block of South Rampart Street into an entertainment district that would pay homage to its role in the birth and early history of jazz. The project would preserve three historic buildings that played important roles in jazz great Louis Armstrong's early career and also include new buildings for live music clubs and restaurants.

Delta Queen steamboat
Delta Queen steamboat
  Delta Queen could cruise again
The Advocate - Congress could act to allow the historic Delta Queen steamboat to return to cruising New Orleans and up the Mississippi River. It was taken off the river in 2008 after a Minnesota congressman cited safety concerns in exempting the vessel from a 1966 law that prohibits wooden boats from carrying more than 50 overnight passengers. The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee passed legislation in July that would put the steamboat which can carry 174 passengers, back into action. Senators Mary Landrieu and David Vitter are teaming up with Ohio senators to push a similar bill this fall in the Senate.

TSA PreCheck expanding   TSA 'PreCheck' expansion expected to enroll 88,000 in six months
Los Angeles Times - A new pilot program to let travelers who pay a fee use faster airport screening lines is expected to draw more than 88,000 travelers in the first six months.

Upcoming Meetings & Events   Upcoming meetings & events

If you have comments or suggestions for future issues of Travel Pulse, contact Jay Tusa at jtusa@crt.la.gov or 225.342.8142.

Facebook Twitter Flikr YouTube Flikr