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:
- We hosted The Overseas Brats for their annual “Gathering” event at the Crowne Plaza Dulles Airport in August. While here, members of the group toured some of our great attractions, including George Washington’s Mount Vernon and the new National Museum of the United States Army. (see photo)
- September saw us hosting the planners and guests from nine military reunion groups for a weekend fam trip. This event was held in partnership with The Military Reunion Network, and allowed the planners to see first-hand why Fairfax County is an ideal location for their reunions.
- In October, we journeyed to Richmond, VA, to exhibit at the Virginia Society of Association Executives (VSAE) Fall Conference and Expo. This marked the sixteenth time in the past seventeen years we’d been at this show. (The event was not held in 2020) Five of our great Fairfax County hotels partners joined us in our old-fashioned ice cream parlor, serving sundaes and floats to the state association planners, to emphasize that meeting in Fairfax County is truly sweet! (see photo)
- We’ll travel to Albany, NY in October to attend the Destination East trade show event, where we’ll meet one-on-one with 20 association and corporate planners.
- On October 26, we’ll play host to the Capital Chapter of PCMA (Professional Convention Management Association) for their monthly educational session and networking event. The event will take place at Capital One Hall, one of our newest Fairfax County attractions.
- November will see Fairfax County host the AAA regional “Travelpaloozaaa” event at Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles. We’ll have an exhibit table at the event, which will allow us to meet personally with all of the agents in attendance, bringing them up-to-date on all of the great reasons to recommend Fairfax County as a preferred destination to their AAA clients.
- We’ll spend a day in early November in Richmond, VA, calling on Virginia state association clients in our annual fall sales blitz.
- Dean Miller and Eric Kulczycky will travel to downtown Washington, DC in late November for the Connect DC trade show, where they’ll meet one-on-one with over 40 association, corporate, and medical technology company planners.
- And we’ll wrap up our travel schedule for the year in Savannah, GA in early December at the Meetings Today Live! trade show event, meeting in person with 25 association and corporate planners.
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 served on the 2022 SYTA Conference Committee in addition to the conference volunteer sub-committee. The annual conference took place in Washington, DC in late August, welcoming student tour operators from across the country. This year’s show’s attendance was an overwhelming success for all as Tour Operator attendance surpassed expectations by more than 50% and attendance matched pre-Covid numbers from past years' shows. This year, Visit Fairfax held appointments with 31 Student Tour Operators who are planning for 2023 and 2024 and are reporting a near to full return of this market to pre-pandemic levels by next year and some are reporting they have already met pre-pandemic numbers in 2022. Also during the conference, Visit Fairfax networked with potential partners during non-appointment periods and also held a tutorial for over 20 Student Tour Operators on the Northern Virginia region and on what services we provide, from hotels, itinerary planning, restaurants, attractions, and fun-filled activities. (see photo)
- Prior to the SYTA Annual Conference, Visit Fairfax hosted a pre-familiarization tour in conjunction with the Northern Virginia Tourism Partnership. Four student tour operators toured the region as we showcased the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center, The National Museum of the U.S. Army, and George Washington's Mount Vernon, among other sites. (see photo)
- Visit Fairfax attended the first CRUSA “Global Travel Exchange” in October, which was held in Washington, DC. This appointment-based tradeshow consisted of the top buyers from Germany, France and the UK. The show also afforded the opportunity for networking and education.
- In partnership with VTC, CRUSA hosted international tour operators on a 3-day pre-FAM of Northern Virginia and Charlottesville prior to CRUSA's Global Travel Exchange held in Washington, DC. During this FAM, Visit Fairfax had the opportunity to welcome and showcase attractions and a hotel to buyers from Europe.
- Visit Fairfax will be hosting the first “Accent On The East” tradeshow operated by Mid-Atlantic Receptive Services. Mid-Atlantic Receptive Operators will be inviting tour operators from the northeast, mid-atlantic and southern regions for a two day tradeshow to hold appointments with state and county DMO’s and interested service providers (attractions, hotels, restaurants), and attend workshops and suggestive itinerary sessions created by Mid-Atlantic Receptive Services. Visit Fairfax will be hosting the second night’s all attendees evening dinner function and event.
- In partnership with Accent On The East, Visit Fairfax is securing advertising in Leisure Group Travel magazine. This will include the front cover, back cover and a two-page, suggested itinerary emphasizing and primarily focusing on Fairfax County, with mention of Washington, DC.
- Immediately after the tradeshow, and in partnership with Washington, DC (Destination DC), Visit Fairfax will be hosting Tour Operators for a 2 day/2 night post-FAM highlighting and marketing adult group tour attractions and venues. Visit Fairfax has a tentative schedule to include the Fairview Park Marriott, Workhouse Arts Center, Lucy Burns Museum, National Museum of the United States Army, Woodlawn and Pope-Leighey House, and Wolf Trap.
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:
- October 19, 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.
- October 24-27, 2022: TEAMS Conference & Expo (Oklahoma City, OK). In partnership with other CVBs in the state that are part of the Sports Virginia tourism alliance, Visit Fairfax will have the opportunity to network with prospective clients and have access to lead information generated through 70+ appointments at one of the sports travel industry’s largest tradeshows.
- Premier Ice Prospects Site Inspection. SportsNOVA, the regional sports tourism alliance between Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, and Stafford counties, conducted site inspections of six hockey facilities in Northern Virginia with Premier Ice Prospects. This client expressed strong interest in using multiple facilities for tournaments, camps, and clinics for the company’s all-girls hockey events.
- S.P.O.R.T.S. Relationship Conference (Savannah, GA). Visit Fairfax was a sponsor of the S.P.O.R.T.S. Relationship Conference, an exclusive, space-limited show offering pre-qualified, one-on-one appointments that are twice as long as those at similar industry events. In addition to its meetings with a variety of sports rightsholders, Visit Fairfax hosted a client function with its SportsNOVA partners to promote Northern Virginia as a preferred destination for travel sports events. (See photo)
- Fairfax County Sports Tourism Task Force Meeting (Fairfax, VA). Established to evaluate and improve sports tourism infrastructure and opportunities in the county, the Fairfax County Sports Tourism Task Force reviewed the development of Patriot Park North, the six-diamond complex expected to open in Spring 2023. Located next to Willow Spring Elementary School in Fairfax, this facility will feature four 90-foot diamonds, two 70-foot diamonds (all turfed and lighted), portable mounds, scoreboards, a press box, concession stands, and a playground. 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 throughout the country.