Destination: Maine, Recap

Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 6.52.10 PMMaine’s 2016 Governor’s Conference on Tourism was held at Sunday River Resort in Newry, March 21-22. Over 425 industry participants from across the state attended for professional development and an exchange of ideas and best practices that will help build one of Maine’s most vital and valuable industries.

Governor’s Conference on Tourism Awards

Winners of the 2016 Governor’s Conference on Tourism Awards were announced at an Awards Luncheon during the conference. These awards recognize individuals, businesses and organizations that have distinguished themselves as models for the industry and contributing to the overall growth of tourism in Maine.

2016 recipients were:

Greg Dugal – Governor’s Award for Tourism Excellence
The Nonantum Resort – Leadership & Growth Award
Lulu Lobster Boat Ride, Captain John Nicolai – Marketing & Promotion Award
Eastport Pirate Festival – Innovation & Creativity Award
Castine Historical Society – Originality Award

Congratulations to the 2016 award winners!

Read more about the Governor’s Conference on Tourism Awards.

Campaign Overview
The Maine Office of Tourism rolled out the fully integrated marketing plan for 2016 at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism in March.
Watch the Originality Campaign marketing video!

The full 2016 Annual Plan is available online and can be found  on the Resources link at

2015 Highlights
Highlights of the Maine Office of Tourism 2015 Annual Report showed that overall 2015 was another good year for tourism in Maine.

  • Visitation increased by 2.9 % over 2014, including nearly 4.5 million first time visitors.
  • Direct expenditures totaled over $5.6 Billion, an increase of 3.2% over 2014.
  • The estimated economic impact to Maine is over $8.2 billion.
  • Tourism in Maine supported 98,932 jobs in 2015.
  • 71% of Mainers took a vacation in their home state last year, and 89% have recommended Maine as a vacation destination to others.

For more highlights and details on MOT activities see the Maine Office of Tourism 2015 Fact Sheet  and  2015 Annual Report

Conference presentations included a keynote on destination development by Roger Brooks; breakout sessions on Wellness Tourism, Digital Storytelling, Adventure Travel, and The Customer Experience; a free afternoon of “how to” style business resources workshops presented by Nancy Marshall Communications, BVK, Davidson-Peterson Associates, Discover New England, the Department of Labor, Maine Film Office and the Office of Tourism; and special guest speaker and Travel Channel host Samantha Brown.

Find presentation materials from the conference and speaker profiles online at

Media Reports/Interviews
Conference coverage by Maine media and follow-up reporting included:
Portland Press Herald
Sun Journal

Many thanks to our generous 2016 Sponsors and Exhibitors, and to our hosts at Sunday River!


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