The sales team at Visit Fairfax is hard at work promoting and selling Fairfax County as a prime meeting destination. From virtual tradeshows and virtual FAM tours to in-person conferences, events, and meetings, our sales managers are planning many exciting strategies to represent the great assets and businesses of Fairfax County.
Here is a snapshot of some upcoming events, activities, and appointments our sales team is working on. The team is always happy to share updates and notes from these events, so feel free to reach out at any time.
On the Meetings Side:
Dean Miller, our National Sales Manager in the Associations/Reunions markets, has been back out at tradeshows and seeking new leads for Fairfax County. Here are some recent updates:
- Visit Fairfax was the sole sponsor of The National Family Reunion Institute’s two-hour online Family Reunion Workshop on Saturday, April 29. As part of our sponsorship, we showed two videos; one highlighting the many great attractions of Fairfax County and the National Capital Area, and the other on things to look for when selecting a hotel for your reunion. Kudos to Matt Hurst and his team at the Hilton Washington Dulles Airport for their help in preparing the second video.
- We attended the Virginia Society of Association Executives (VSAE) Annual Conference in May at Lansdowne Resort in nearby Loudoun County, where we chatted with the planners for more than thirty Virginia associations about the advantages of getting together in Northern Virginia.
- We traveled to Branson, MO in May to attend the Rendezvous South trade show event, where we met one-on-one with eighteen association and corporation meeting planners over three days. (see photo above)
- We assisted the planners for the Internationals Masons and the Order of the Eastern Stars, a large fraternal group that will be meeting here in July of this year, with the preparations for their meeting. The group will be meeting at the Hyatt Regency Dulles; we showed them a number of the attractions and restaurants available for their attendees near the hotel. This program was re-scheduled from 2020 because of the Covid-19 pandemic. (see photo)
- The Board of Directors of the American Wine Society met here in May, and we accompanied them to a wine tasting at The Winery at Bull Run in Centreville. Ashton Lough (winemaker at the winery) hosted the group for a most enjoyable evening while highlighting the winery’s award-winning wines! (see photo below)
- Along with representatives from the Hyatt Regency Dulles and the Sheraton Reston, we conducted two days of sales calls on twelve Virginia association planners in Richmond, VA on our annual spring blitz.
- June will see us at the Smart Meetings trade show event in downtown Washington, DC; we’ll meet one-on-one with fifteen association and corporate meeting planners.
- We’ll wrap up June in New Orleans, LA at The Military Reunion Network’s annual Education Summit, where we’ll talk with the planners for more than thirty military reunion groups about holding their reunions here in Fairfax County.
- In July, we’ll participate in a new trade show, Small & Boutique Meetings, which will be held in Greenville, SC. While there, we’ll meet with 25 planners for smaller meetings that are a good fit for our meeting hotels.
- And we’ll once again be an exhibiting sponsor at the Reston-Herndon Meeting Planners (RHMP) “Summer Camp” event, being held for the second year in a row at the Hyatt Regency Dulles. Over 150 locally-based meeting planners are expected to attend this all-day event.
- In August, we’ll journey to Detroit, MI, for the Connect Marketplace trade show event. Dean Miller will meet with association planners over the course of the three-day event, while Eric Kulczycky meets with sports tournament rights holders and organizers.
- And we’ll close out August by hosting The Overseas Brats for their annual Gathering event at the Crowne Plaza Dulles Airport.
On the Tour & Travel Side:
Lori Scott has joined the Visit Fairfax team as the new National and International Sales Manager, continuing our efforts in the tour & travel market:
Visit Fairfax returned to IPW in Orlando, Florida in early June 2022. This leading international inbound travel trade show is one of the largest in the US, with buyers from 70+ countries present. We had pre-scheduled appointments with our top international clients, as well as introduced Fairfax County to many new international tour operators. The Hilton McLean Tysons Corner and the National Museum of the U.S. Army joined us in our booth. Visit Fairfax also had a media presence at this show, meeting with more than 25 domestic and international journalists.
Visit Fairfax will participate in the Capital Region USA Sales Mission to France this June to promote further the destination to one of its target European markets.
On the Sports Side:
Eric Kulczycky, our National Sales Manager in charge of the sports market, has been working hard on furthering Visit Fairfax's foray into sports event tourism:
Upcoming Conferences and Meetings:
- July 20, 2022: Fairfax County Athletic Council Meeting The FCAC serves in an advisory capacity to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, School Board, and county agencies on matters relating to the use of public sports facilities and the programming of youth/adult sports programs in the county. Meetings currently take place on the third Wednesday of every month via Microsoft Teams from 6-9 p.m. Please contact Eric Kulczycky at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- August 8-10, 2022: CONNECT Sports Marketplace (Detroit, MI). CONNECT Sports is an annual education conference and appointment-only trade show bringing together active planners and rights holders, suppliers, and experts in sports events for three days of general sessions, workshops, and pre-set appointments.
- 2022 Sports Events & Tourism Association Symposium (Fort Worth, Texas). Attended one of the sports travel industry’s largest tradeshows, the Sports ETA Symposium, to generate lead opportunities through appointments with sports event planners and decision-makers responsible for selecting destinations for state, regional, national, and international events. While at the Symposium, Visit Fairfax also co-sponsored a client event through its SportsNOVA regional sports tourism alliance with Loudoun, Prince William, and Stafford counties.
- Fairfax County Sports Tourism Task Force Meeting (Fairfax, VA). The Sports Tourism Task Force was established to evaluate and improve sports tourism infrastructure and opportunities in the county. Membership consists of representatives from county and state government, public high schools and colleges/universities, local and regional parks, the athletic council, the hospitality community, and Visit Fairfax. Agenda items included: governance model for potential sports tourism facilities, update on school facility use for tournaments, and discussion of public-private partnerships.
- 2022 United States Disabled Open Golf Championship – Visit Fairfax was a co-sponsor of the 2022 U.S. Disabled Open Golf Championship, held from June 7-9, 2022 at the Laurel Hill Golf Club in Lorton, VA. Now in its fifth year, this national championship is the first of its kind to obtain world rankings for golfers with disabilities by the United States Golf Association. More than 60 golfers participated in the 54-hole championship open to golfers with physical and intellectual impairments.
- Patriot Park North – Visit Fairfax has been working closely with the Fairfax County Park Authority to market and sell “Patriot Park North” to baseball and softball tournament organizers. This six-diamond complex (turf, lighted) is expected to open in Spring 2023 next to Willow Spring Elementary School in Fairfax. It will feature four 90-foot diamonds, two 70-foot diamonds, portable mounds, scoreboards and a press box, concession stands, and a playground.
- ARPA Sports Marketing Incentive Program – Visit Fairfax submitted grant requests to help attract new sports events to Fairfax County through the American Rescue Plan Act Sports Marketing Incentive Program. Administered by the Virginia Tourism Corporation to spur economic growth in the Commonwealth, a $1 million fund was created to be used for event incentives and marketing promotions targeted specifically at attracting new tournaments to Virginia destinations. Eligible applicants included Destination Marketing Organizations, sports venues, and local government agencies.
On the Corporate/Government Side:
Eric Kulczycky also handles the corporate and government markets and has been working hard on furthering Visit Fairfax's efforts with business travel:
- 2022 SGMP NEC (Pittsburgh, PA). Attended the Society of Government Meeting Professionals (SGMP) National Education Conference (NEC), the largest annual event in the government meetings industry where professionals from across the country come together for education, resources, and networking opportunities.
- MPI ReConEx 2022 (College Park, MD). Attended the Meeting Professional International’s (MPI) Potomac Regional Conference and Expo, an educational conference and business forum for the meetings and events industry. Presented by the Potomac Chapter of MPI, ReConEx 2022 provided meeting professionals from the Mid-Atlantic region and beyond an opportunity to network with industry leaders and build strategic business relationships.