Submitted by Beth Shumate, MCVB
The McKinney Convention & Visitors Bureau has fun activities planned for National Travel & Tourism Week May 4-12. During this week each year, the MCVB challenges McKinney area residents to become tourists in their town by hosting contests and events to get people out and about in the community.
“This is always such a fun week for us,” said Dee-dee Guerra, Interim Executive Director of the MCVB. “It’s the one time a year when we heavily focus on educating and challenging our local residents to experience as much of our beautiful city as they can, so they will then be the best McKinney Ambassadors possible when friends and family come to visit!”
Each year, the MCVB staff plans different activities to get people out and about within the community, challenging them to locate attractions and other special features within the city.
“Our most exciting development this year is the opening of the brand new ‘Made in McKinney’ retail store where visitors and residents can pick up fun McKinney-themed merchandise. We did a soft launch of the store on May 1, just in time for National Travel & Tourism Week,” Guerra said. “We’ve been hearing for so long – and agree – that McKinney needed a place for people to buy souvenir-type items, T-shirts, postcards and such. We heard these requests and now this store in our Visitors Center helps meet that need.” (More details about the store opening are included below.)
Among the activities in the works for National Travel & Tourism Week are:
Mayor’s Proclamation: As in past years, McKinney Mayor Brian Loughmiller will sign a proclamation declaring May 4-12 as National Travel & Tourism Week in McKinney.
Facebook contests: Watch the MCVB Facebook page for details of a couple photo contests they’re hosting. Participates’ names will go in a drawing for a prize basket of McKinney goodies including prizes from The Pantry, Laura Moore Fine Art Studios, The Book Gallery, Landon Winery, Kiss & Make Up Boutique & Salon, the Heard-Craig Center for the Arts, and Orisons Boutique. More to come!)
McKinney Public Safety Appreciation Day: For the third year, the MCVB will serve breakfast and lunch to the McKinney Police and Fire Department personnel on Tuesday, May 7. (“We always thoroughly enjoy this day – it gives us a chance to visit with our first responder personnel and thank them for all they do to keep residents and visitors safe in our community,” Guerra said.)
Name Our Tourism Ambassador Contest: Local artist Carol Witt is donating a painting featuring a special character in honor of downtown McKinney’s “resident” frogs. Enter a name choice for a chance to win the painting. The frog character will then serve as the MCVB Travel Ambassador for future National Travel & Tourism Weeks.
Second Saturday Fun: The MCVB Visitors Center will be open during the day on Second Saturday (May 11) for games and to pick up information about McKinney. Those stopping by can also put their names in the drawing for the prize basket to be awarded the week of May 13.
Opening of the “Made in McKinney” Store: The store features McKinney-themed merchandise including T-shirts, note card sets, postcards, hats and other gift items, all available in the front room of the MCVB Visitors Center at 200 W. Virginia. The items all feature the designs of local residents Carol Witt and Windy Gallagher. Other local artists’ work may be featured in the future.
Anyone with questions about McKinney’s National Travel & Tourism Week can check the MCVB web page dedicated to the celebration, stop by 200 W.Virginia in historic downtown McKinney, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 214-544-1407.
About National Travel & Tourism Week:
The first full week of May is annually recognized as National Travel and Tourism Week, a tradition first celebrated in 1984 and facilitated by the U.S. Travel Office. Localized events are presented in cities, states and travel businesses nationwide to champion the power of travel. It was established as National Tourism Week when the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution in 1983 designating the week to be celebrated in May. In a White House ceremony, President Ronald Reagan signed a Presidential Proclamation urging citizens to observe the week with “the appropriate ceremonies and activities.” (Source: The U.S. Travel Office)