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CenStates Chapter TTRA

In This Issue
Planning for the Future
CenStates Conference
New Officers & Directors
Valentine Receives Award
Webinar Ideas Welcome
How Americans Roil
10 Tourism Marketing Trends
Mark Your Calendar

 Highlights from the 2014 CenStates Conference

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February 2015

 Planning for the Future

LuAnn Reinders, President, CenStates TTRA

CenStates TTRA Board of Directors will be going through a strategic planning process during 2015.  The results will be presented during the 2015 CenStates TTRA conference in Branson, Missouri this fall.  The planning committee includes;  Dan Erkkila (University of Minnesota), Pat Simmons (Minnesota Tourism), Brenda Myers, CenStates Vice President (Hamilton County Tourism) and me, LuAnn Reinders, CenStates President, (Iowa Tourism Office). 


To begin the process, I will be attending the International TTRA Board strategic planning session in San Diego on February 20 & 21.   From that session the committee will outline a strategy for developing "CenStates TTRA Strategic Plan" for the future of CenStates TTRA.     


Get involved!  Let us know how CenStates TTRA would help you in the future.  We need your input.  Look for a short survey the first part of March.  This survey will help us shape the direction of CenStates TTRA.  And please, contact me anytime if you have some ideas for the future of our organization at  I'd love to hear from you.


2015 CenStates Conference in Branson MO

The annual CenStates conference comes to Branson, Missouri with powerful and practical sessions on using research for destination marketing decisions. Join us on September 15-17 at the Hilton Convention Center Hotel and the connected Branson Convention Center, which are within walking distance of Branson Landing and historic downtown.


If you would like to help on the conference committee or have suggestions for programming, please contact conference chair Brenda Myers at


Mark your calendar now and watch for more details.


New CenStates Board Members

The election results are in! Congratulations to the new board members of the CenStates Chapter:

Bob Frohoff
  • Bob Frohoff, MMGY Global
  • Ashley Garoutte, H2R Market Research
  • Amy Vaughan, Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis 

Officers of the chapter are:

Ashley Garoutte
  • Chair - Alisha Valentine, SMARI
  • President - LuAnn Reinders, Iowa Tourism Office
  • Vice President - Brenda Myers, Hamilton Co. Tourism
  • Treasurer - Lorinda Cruikshank, Missouri Division of Tourism

Board members midway through their two year terms are:

Amy Vaughan
Amy Vaughan
  • Leah Chandler, Branson/Lakes Area CVB
  • Kirk Hulstein, South Dakota Department of Tourism
  • Heather LeMoine, North Dakota Tourism Division
  • Patrick Simmons, Explore Minnesota Tourism  
Thank you for your service to the chapter. All chapter members have the opportunity to be involved with CenStates. Contact LuAnn Reinders for information.

Valentine Receives President's Award

Congratulations to Alisha Valentine of Strategic Marketing & Research Insights (SMARI) for being  awarded the CenStates TTRA President's Award during the annual conference in Bloomington, Minnesota. 


Valentine was recognized for her ability to secure sponsorships and lead the CenStates TTRA organization.  Alisha has served as Vice President, President and Chairman for the CenStates TTRA Board of Directors.  She was also the conference chair for the Springfield (2010) and Cedar Rapids (2011) conferences.


Webinar Suggestions Welcomed

Free webinars on trending tourism topics were introduced by CenStates in 2013 and will continue in 2015. Please let us know what subjects and speakers would be most beneficial to you. Send your ideas to LuAnn Reinders at Thank you!


How Americans Roll - Study of Gender Preferences and Travel Trends

According to new research from Enterprise Rent-A-Car, the world's largest rental car brand, relatively brief road trips are gaining popularity. 


The study finds that Americans prefer shorter weekend road trips versus week-long vacations. Specifically, two-thirds (66 percent) prefer to take a one day or weekend road trip as opposed to 31 percent who prefer to take at least a week-long trip.  More than half (57 percent) report that they would drive up to 300 miles one way for a weekend trip, and almost 75 percent prefer to drive to their destinations because of the freedom it provides.


10 Tourism Marketing Trends for 2015


Check out the other 9 trends at 10 Tourism Trends for 2015. 


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CenStates Newsletter - February 2015

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