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COLLABORATION STRENGTHENS TOURISM EFFORTS IN FINGER LAKES REGION

Regional promotions cross county lines to market the Finger Lakes and New York State.

Posted on Tue, Oct 4th, 2016 11:02 am by joyoftravel.ca news services

Syracuse, NY  -- The Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council (FLRTC) brings together 14 counties and tourism representatives in the Finger Lakes to focus on one main goal - promoting the region as a premier travel destination. For this organization, collaboration is key, whether creating a trail or brochure, or working as a team to administer a region-wide public relations program that amassed a total of 1.3 billion media impressions in 2015.

Visitors traveling to the Finger Lakes are looking for the best places to taste wine, experience the lakes, or see the assets that make the region unique, regardless of county lines. As a result, the FLRTC develops and participates in programs that work to promote the region and state as a single entity.

The most recent of these collaborative efforts is the publication of an "On the Water" guide, detailing the varied and unique water experiences available in the Finger Lakes Region. The guide is a comprehensive summer resource that encompasses 11 glacial lakes and one Great Lake, along with listing other bodies of water like the Seneca-Cayuga and Erie Canal. The guide was produced by the FLRTC to help visitors make the most of the region's waterfront assets, listing places to charter a boat, rent canoes or kayaks, take a water taxi, or locate the nearby parks, restaurants and museums and other regional assets.

Another notable collaboration taking place within the Finger Lakes Region is the Cross Border Showcase program, a destination marketing program that speaks directly to Canadian visitors, encouraging them to cross the border and explore deeper into New York State. Five counties within the Finger Lakes participate in the program - including Finger Lakes Scenic Wonders, a collaboration between Livingston and Wayne Counties to bring recognition to Letchworth State Park and Chimney Bluffs State Park.

Perhaps the largest of these collaborative programs geographically, is the Haunted History Trail of New York State. The trail encompasses 65 haunted locations spread out over 31 counties of New York State, and works to promote ghost hunts and paranormal sites year-round. Eight Finger Lakes counties are a part of the Haunted History Trail, including Cayuga, Livingston, Ontario, Tioga, Wayne, and Yates counties, as well as Rochester and Syracuse, NY.

Visitors who come into the Finger Lakes region see the benefits of these collaborations all the time, whether they are traveling along one of the region's wine or beer trails, or taking part in the Cheese Festival hosted by the Finger Lakes Cheese Alliance. Many of the visitor guides distributed by the counties in the region include maps that stretch beyond county borders to show off the region or state as a whole, or highlight the tourism assets within a short driving distance of that area.

"We are finding that collaboration is increasingly important when promoting regional or state-wide tourism," says Nicole Mahoney, regional director of the Finger Lakes Regional Tourism Council. "Visitors to our state do not recognize county lines. The goal is to appeal to their interests in the broadest way possible, and that often includes reaching beyond the borders of a single destination."