Contact: Lisa Simmons, MOTT
Ron D'Amico, Connelly Partners
For Immediate Release
PIONEER VALLEY OPEN FOR SUMMER 2011 TOURISM SEASON; TRAVELERS URGED TO EXPERIENCE ALL REGION HAS TO OFFER
Upcoming events and attractions make region a summer destination for all
BOSTON, June 29, 2011
The Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism and the Greater Springfield Convention and Visitors Bureau (GSCVB) are inviting travelers to explore the region’s summer attractions and events, which remain open for business despite tornado damage that impacted much of the region. The Pioneer Valley is a short 90-minute drive on the Massachusetts Turnpike, making the region easily accessible to residents from the Boston area and neighboring regions. For less than a tank of gas, families can find something for all to enjoy, including indoor and outdoor recreation and attractions, history and culture.
“The Pioneer Valley is a wonderful place to explore with your family,” said Betsy Wall, executive director of the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism. “While the tornadoes have devastated parts of the region, our tourism destinations were spared and a strong tourism season will contribute greatly to the region's recovery. We want travelers to know that places like the Basketball Hall of Fame, Six Flags New England, the 10 Museums and other iconic attractions are open for business.”
“The Pioneer Valley is a top tourism destination, now more than ever,” said GSCVB President Mary Kay Wydra. “The damage from the tornadoes primarily affected residential and business properties, and the response from the region – and beyond - to provide assistance has been overwhelming. The tourism and hospitality industries were very fortunate to have avoided any significant setbacks due to the storms, and everyone is gearing up for a busy summer season. We’ve got an array of outdoor activities in pastoral settings, great parks and museums, one-of-a-kind landmarks, specialty shops, top restaurants and accommodations. As always, we stand ready to offer the ideal visitor experience.”
Visitors looking to help the Pioneer Valley recover from the recent tornadoes are encouraged to:
Make a financial donation to the Massachusetts Statewide Disaster Relief Fund
, hosted by the United Way of Tri-County.
Make a donation to the Red Cross of the Pioneer Valley, by visiting redcresscwm.org
Find ways to volunteer or donate products/equipment through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) National Donations Management System
Upcoming events include:
• Star Spangled Springfield
-- July 4
Celebrate this evening of patriotism, pageantry and pyrotechnics with a rousing patriotic concert and fireworks display.
• Hoop City Jazz Festival
– July 8-10
Enjoy the emergence of jazz with the city’s legacy as the birthplace of basketball. This year’s lineup is designed to reflect the cornucopia of colors, textures and flavors that comprise the genre.
• Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement
– August 11-13
Honor the addition of the new class to the Hall of Fame as they join the ranks of Basketball's Finest, and see the entertaining and educational exhibits celebrating the game of basketball all summer long.
• Indian Motocycle Day at the Springfield Museums
– July 17
View a variety of classic and vintage motorcycles browse motorcycle vendor displays and see the famous collection of the former Indian Motocycle Museum while a DJ spins classic rock tunes.
Notable Attractions include:
• Yankee Candle Flagship
-- In this entertaining world of New England charm you will find fairy tale fantasies, hands-on candle making and 400,000 candles in over 200 different famous Yankee scents.
• Six Flags New England
-- Enjoy an outing at this great park with rides, shows, attractions and the Hurricane Harbor water park.
• Springfield Museums
– Includes the Science Museum, D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts, Connecticut Valley History, G.W.V. Smith Art Museum and the Wood Museum of Springfield History.
• Outdoor Activities – Including scenic boat rides on the CT River, bike trails, whitewater rafting and canopy tours (zip-lines).
The Massachusetts Office of Travel & Tourism (MOTT) is the state agency dedicated to promoting Massachusetts as a leisure-travel destination. An integral part of the state’s economy, tourism generates more than $915 million in state and local taxes and $14.4 billion in travel related expenditures and supports 121,500 in-state jobs. Web site: massvacation.com
The GSCVB, an affiliate of the Economic Development Council of Western MA, is a private, non-profit destination marketing organization dedicated to promoting the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts for meetings and conventions, group tours and leisure travel. For more information, visit www.valleyvisitor.com.