The Visit Fairfax team has been hard at work selling and promoting Fairfax County to potential clients, groups, and media. The team is always happy to share updates from tradeshows, appointments, and events. Read on for an updated list of recent activities and what will be happening over the next few months. You may find that this information can benefit your business.
Associations & Reunions:
- In October, and for the 13th consecutive year, Visit Fairfax exhibited at the Virginia Society of Association Executives (VSAE) Fall Conference trade show in Richmond, VA. Eleven of our great Fairfax County meeting hotels joined us for the day as we constructed an old-fashioned service station in our booth, complete with a gas pump, tires, oil cans, and a 1955 Chevrolet Bel Air Sport Coupe, to illustrate our commitment to providing our clients with “Old-Fashioned Service.” (see photo)
- Also in October, Visit Fairfax traveled to Virginia Beach, VA for a trade show hosted by Your Military Reunion Connection (YMRC), and met one-on-one with the planners for 20 military reunion groups. The Hilton Washington Dulles Airport joined us in talking up the scheduled 2020 opening of the new National Museum of the United States Army, which will be located here in Fairfax County. (see photo)
- In early November, Visit Fairfax spent a full day in Richmond, VA calling on planners for several Virginia state associations.
- This month, we’ll be in downtown Washington, DC, attending the Connect DC trade show event, where we’ll meet one-on-one with 15 Washington-based association planners.
- Also this month, we’ll return to Richmond to attend the VSAE holiday luncheon and remind the state association planners in attendance why Fairfax County is such a great meeting destination.
- For our hotels and special event venues who are interested in attracting more LGBTQ wedding business, we’ll be hosting a special informational seminar in early January. This will be a free event for our Fairfax County stakeholders, filled with practical tips on reaching and working with this unique – and growing – market segment.
- On Saturday, February 16th, Visit Fairfax will host the 11th annual Family Reunion Workshop, providing family reunion planners from around the region with tips and helpful advice on planning and hosting better family reunions. Our good friend Edith Wagner with Reunions magazine will join us once again as our featured speaker. This year’s workshop will be held at the Fairfax Marriott at Fair Oaks, and we’ll be joined by 20 Fairfax County hotels, attractions, and service providers eager to book more family reunion groups.
- The Fairfax County Sports Tourism Task Force is finalizing a report that will provide the Board of Supervisors with recommendations on ways to improve the county’s sports tourism infrastructure and event opportunities. With membership consisting of representatives from county and state government, public schools, local and regional parks, the athletic council, the hospitality community, and Visit Fairfax, the Task Force has met regularly since September 2017 to discuss a variety of topics: the county’s current sports facilities; state, regional, and national athletic facilities of note; potential new and renovated facilities; administrative and fiscal models; issues affecting tournament directors; and event and business opportunities that could generate significant visitor spending in the county.
- Visit Fairfax recently attended the following conferences and events:
- 2018 TEAMS Conference & Expo (Louisville, KY). In partnership with other CVBs and sports commissions as part of the Sports Virginia coalition, Visit Fairfax combined forces to host a client event and generate leads through appointments with more than 70+ state, regional, national, and international events rights-holders at one of the sports travel industry’s largest tradeshows.
- Sports Virginia Meeting (Charlottesville, VA). Visit Fairfax met with representatives of the Virginia Tourism Corporation and other CVBs in the state to discuss ways to maximize the coalition’s presence at sports tourism shows and to generate additional sports event opportunities for destinations in the Commonwealth.
- Visit Fairfax will participate in the following upcoming conferences and meetings:
- December 19, 2018: Fairfax County Athletic Council Meeting (Fairfax, VA). 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 take place monthly from 7:30-9 p.m. at the Pennino Building across from the Fairfax County Government Center.
- February 5-6, 2019: Virginia Sports Summit (Norfolk, VA). Fairfax County stakeholders are invited to attend this summit which will connect sports organizations, Parks and Recreation, Convention and Visitors Bureaus, and businesses throughout the Commonwealth in an effort to enhance the sports tourism industry in Virginia. Visit http://vasportssummit.com for more information and to register.
- Visit Fairfax attended and fundraised for the 2018 SGMP NATCAP Holiday Party and Silent Auction in Arlington, VA, hosted by the Society of Government Meeting Professionals National Capital Chapter. Proceeds will benefit area scholarships to attend SGMP’s National Education Conference & Expo in Detroit, MI on June 25-27, 2019. Fairfax County hoteliers interested in attending the 2019 NEC can contact Eric Kulczycky at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, visit http://sgmp.org/conference.
Tour & Travel:
- In October, Visit Fairfax participated in the second annual Spotlight on the Mid-Atlantic in Dover, DE. Hosted by Mid-Atlantic Receptive Services, this conference combines educational seminars, networking functions and a trade show over three days of interaction. Visit Fairfax met with various domestic tour operators ranging from small operators to large receptive companies who are developing product for the Mid-Atlantic region.
- Visit Fairfax attended the annual Capital Region USA (CRUSA) Global Marketing Update on October 18 in Rockville, MD. During the meeting, CRUSA provided the latest news and research on international arrivals, noting that there were 2.6 million visitors to the capital region in 2017. This is a 4% year-over-year increase from 2016. Other updates during the meeting included air service developments, tips, and trends for international marketers, hoteliers, attractions and DMOs, and the CRUSA 2019 international marketing plan.
- Visit Fairfax, in partnership with Visit Loudoun and United Airlines, hosted a familiarization tour from South Korea in late October. The FAM consisted of 11 top tour operators and wholesalers in addition to US-based receptive operators who work with them. FAM participants were able to visit George Washington’s Mount Vernon and enjoy dinner at Koyiga, a celebrated Korean restaurant in Annandale. (see photo)
- In November, Visit Fairfax participated in the National Tour Association (NTA) Travel Exchange in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This annual tradeshow is hosted by the NTA, North America’s leading business association for the travel industry. Over five days, Visit Fairfax had pre-set appointments with quality tour operators from the USA and Canada, as well as attended cutting-edge professional development seminars and networking events. Fairfax was well represented at the show with both George Washington's Mount Vernon and the new National Museum of the United States Army in attendance. Please reach out to email@example.com to receive the appointment notes from this show. (see photo)
- Through our involvement with the Northern Virginia Tourism Partnership, Visit Fairfax participated in the Ontario Motor Coach Association (OMCA) Marketplace in November. This Canada-based tradeshow focuses on North American packaged travel. We had appointments with key motorcoach operators from Canada, which is a top feeder market for the Capital Region. Please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the appointment notes from this show.
- Visit Fairfax, along with Visit Loudoun, represented Northern Virginia at the Travel South International Showcase in Nashville, TN in late November. This premier marketplace event in the South featured 100+ qualified International tour operators from 20+ countries meeting with southern travel suppliers over three days of intensive appointments and networking forums.
- Visit Fairfax will attend American Bus Association's (ABA) Annual Marketplace from January 26-29, 2019 in Louisville, KY. The marketplace is the premier conference for motorcoach group travel and tourism in the US and Canada. In addition to pre-scheduled appointments with new companies as well as current clients, the show also offers professional development education over three days.
- Visit Fairfax will attend the International Inbound Travel Association (IITA) Summit from February 3-6, 2016 in Savannah, GA. The summit provides a one-on-one appointment marketplace for inbound tour operators and US Suppliers to plan travel for international visitors.
- Sue Porter, our Director of Visitor Services, attended the National Cherry Blossom Festival Fall Tree Planting at Northern Virginia Community College with staff members from both the Festival and the College. Get a jump start on Cherry Blossom season promotions by sending us relevant packaging ideas!
- Visitors are enjoying the new Virtual Reality headsets available at the Fairfax County Visitors Center in Tysons. Stop by to get a 360-degree view of the county's major attractions and talk to the travel counselors for help planning your stay in the region. (see photo)
- Save the date for the next Ambassadors Class: Sales Edition. It will take place on February 7, 2018 at 2pm at the DoubleTree by Hilton McLean Tysons. To register for this free event, please contact Sue Porter at email@example.com or 703-752-9512.
Media & Communications:
- In October, Visit Fairfax hosted a group of media from Hong Kong, who arrived to the region on the new Cathay Pacific direct flight to Washington Dulles International. The group spent time in Loudoun and Fairfax counties before heading on to Washington, DC. The new flight on Cathay Pacific opened up this region to many localities within Southeast Asia. Thank you to all those who helped support this FAM tour, including host hotel The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner.
- In late October, members of NVTP hosted travel writer Jane Canapini from Toronto after meeting her on a media mission to Ontario last April and again in Victoria at the Travel Media Association of Canada (TMAC) marketplace. Jane has already published several accounts of her trip on her site, GrownUpTravels.com, with more articles in the works.
- This month, Visit Fairfax will again work with members of NVTP to host Canadian travel writer Janice Tober in the region. This FAM tour is another result of our attendance at TMAC.
- Visit Fairfax is pleased to share some new clips that have recently been published as a result of previous familiarization tours of the county or direct efforts of our team. Please contact Ali Morris for more details at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Visit Fairfax continues to see incredible growth on our social media accounts. Please help us continue to grow by tagging us (@VisitFairfax) on your own accounts and by using our hashtag, #FXVA.
- Looking for ways to broaden your reach in the media? You can still sign-up for the Visit Fairfax corporate social responsibility marketing campaign, LoveShare. All we need from you is a special offer geared towards locals. That's it! Read more and submit your offer here.
- Thanks to our friends at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner for stopping by the Visit Fairfax offices on Halloween day with hotel updates and their new reusable straws! (see photo)