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Posts tagged: Idaho tourism

Cure for stress: Idaho vacation

Last spring, Idaho issued a call in Seattle for nominations for a “stressed-out” family member who could use an Idaho vacation. Julie Lumpkin nominated her hard-working husband, Toby, and the couple and their two young children beat out more than 50 other contestants to win a 10-day Idaho vacation. Now, the Lumpkin family’s Idaho adventure, from river rafting, horseback riding and fishing to golf, bicycling and sightseeing has been captured in a reality show-style video that the state will use for a tourism marketing campaign it’ll launch this spring

State Tourism Director Karen Ballard said the project filled a void in “video assets” for the state’s tourism promotion efforts, and snippets from it will be used for a variety of tourism promotions. For the Lumpkins, it was an idyllic vacation with their 9- and 7-year-old kids. In the video, Julie Lumpkin says of her husband, “I think he was wound as tight as a drum when we first left Seattle - now, he’s starting to relax.” Her husband adds, “It’s been one of the most rewarding things we’ve ever done as a family.”

State tourism officials are unveiling the video during their annual “tourism tour,” a series of meetings around the state with Idaho tourism business operators and organizations, including one in Post Falls today and one in Boise on Dec. 15th.

Promoting the state on a high-tech shoestring

With one of the lowest budgets for promoting tourism among states – but with a $3 billion tourist industry seen as key to the state’s ailing economy – Idaho is turning to high-tech tools and tricks to help market the state. The state’s Division of Tourism is beta-testing a new technology from a Sandpoint firm that enables prospective visitors to virtually fly over the state, checking out attractions, lodging and scenery along the route as they go. “We feel we have technology that will really help the state attract more visitors and help the tourism businesses attract more visitors,” said Mark Williams, CEO of GeoData Technologies.

Idaho’s also using new 360-degree panoramic photography on its tourism Web site, exploring an iPhone app and planning a campaign for spring around the reality show-style story of a stressed-out Seattle family that won a free Idaho vacation. “People don’t know about Idaho, and we don’t have the funding to get the traditional advertising out there,” said Idaho’s Division of Tourism administrator, Karen Ballard. “If we can use this online visual world, where you get the visuals of who and what we are, we’re all for that.” You can read my full story here in today’s Spokesman-Review.

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About this blog

Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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