Forms Multi-Disciplinary Foliage Force
MONTPELIER, Vt. – Adding another dimension to its inspirational response to Irene, the State of Vermont today announced a multi-disciplinary task force charged with restoring tourism, and the vital economic activity it generates, during the state’s celebrated fall foliage season.
Composed of representatives from the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Vermont Ski Areas Association, Vermont Agency of Transportation, Vermont Department of Forest Parks and Recreation, Vermont-based communications firms HMC2 and Hen House Media and state tourism officials, the task force will use a comprehensive communications campaign to highlight the accessibility of Vermont and that most areas of Vermont are ready to provide the inspirational foliage experience the state is known for.
“While Vermont continues to work diligently to revitalize areas impacted, Governor Shumlin and Lt. Governor Scott have tasked us with doing everything we can to communicate that, with a few exceptions, our communities-and their inns, bed and breakfasts, attractions, restaurants and resorts -are open for business and that, without exception, our foliage season is going to be spectacular,” said Steve Cook, deputy commissioner of tourism.
“With the interstates and 85 percent of the state’s roads fully open, visitors can have the authentic Vermont foliage experience that our state is so very proud to provide,” Cook added.
“We want people to know that Vermont is open for business, we are ready to welcome visitors for our spectacular fall foliage, and there are a ton of memorable things to do and see here in the Green Mountain State,” added Vicky Tebbetts, vice president of the Vermont Chamber of Commerce.
“Vermont is moving forward-that’s the Vermont way and it’s an impressive sight to behold,” said Parker Riehle, president of Ski Vermont. “One very important way to help with this effort is to keep or make travel plans to visit Vermont. We’ll be here to greet everyone with a warm smile when they arrive.”
The task force expects to launch the first element of its effort Friday and sustain the campaign through foliage season. For example, in addition to traditional media, and given the significant role that social media and user-generated content have played in the response to Irene, this task force will make extensive and innovative use of grassroots social media outlets that will allow Vermonters and visitors alike to actively participate in the campaign. Information on the Foliage Force and ways to support this effort can be found at www.vermontpartners.org .