The big floods of 1993 are a distant memory for most of the country, but for Midwestern states, the flooding left water stains on their image as a tourist destination.
Nine states and the U.S. Travel and Tourism Administration (USTTA) have launched a campaign to offset the image and draw more visitors.
“The loss of visitors due to impaired consumer perception of the Midwest caused more damage than the actual floods,” said Greg Farmer, U.S. undersecretary of commerce for travel and tourism.
The campaign is a first for the USTTA, which spends most of its energies promoting the country to the rest of the world.
The campaign, dubbed “Touch the Heart of the U.S. - Visit MidAmerica,” also includes a toll-free number for getting information on each of the states: 800-878-6439. The states involved are Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, Minnesota, North and South Dakota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Kansas.
Travelers with computers have some more new materials at their fingertips:
*Information on New Mexico’s 12 ski areas, with everything from percentage of expert runs to lift prices, is available from the state’s Department of Tourism on the Internet’s World Wide Web: http:/ www.nets.com/tourism.
*You can get tourist and business info about Mexico and ask questions, post messages, search discount airline fares and download info from the government’s tourism office by dialing the Mexico Online bulletin board: (407) 582-7801.
*Profiles on national and state parks and listings of outdoor events worldwide will be posted on Outdoor Adventure Online, available to America Online subscribers.