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Visit Buffalo Niagara 2013 annual report

Text of Visit Buffalo Niagara 2013 annual report

  • Y E A R I N

    R E V I E W

  • Dear Tourism Advocate,

    In a year filled with highlights for the local tourism industry, one in particular stands out: the launch of our Canadian Marketing Initiative. Working in

    collaboration with the Niagara Tourism & Convention Corp. and with the support of the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council, Visit Buffalo Niagara kicked off the initiative with a consumer research study followed by the first phase implementa-tion of a digital advertising campaign aimed at consumers throughout the southern Ontario market. Working with the Toronto-based agencies BBDO and PHD, we began the process of building on an already strong foundation of shopping trips from Ontario. The first phase of the campaign launched in mid-November and the early returns were encouraging, with more than 18,000 visitors driven to the VBN and NTCC websites. The Canadian Marketing Initiative will continue throughout 2014. Well report on results as they come in through the Tourism Insider Newsletter.

    In the domestic market we continued our relationship with the digitally savvy destination marketing agency, eBrains. After realizing a truly impressive ROI from our 2012 campaign we re-engaged eBrains to conduct a lead generation program designed to further grow the VBN database, manage our e-newsletters and oversee a contextual display advertising campaign. A conversion study is currently underway and we should have results by the second quarter of 2014.

    The conventions and meetings side of our business was also plenty busy in 2013 generating a near record 165,000 definite room nights booked and servicing an eclectic mix of conventions and amateur athletics. With events ranging from the Golden Age Games to the New York State Bar Law Examiners Bar Exam to the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) to the Color Run, Buffalo continued to fill hotel rooms from a broad base of regional, state and national clients. Its worth noting here that the success of the HighEdWeb Annual Confer-ence was a particularly satisfying accomplishment given that it made full use of the recently installed state-of-the-

    art technology upgrades at the Convention Center that resulted from a significant investment from the County of Erie and a $500,000 grant from Empire State Devel-opment. HighEdWeb delegates also fully embraced an innovative social media program devised by the staffs of the Center and VBN. Our performance drew rave reviews and set the stage for a further demonstration of our social media savvy during 2014 events such as NCAA basketball and the Congress for the New Urbanism.

    Im also pleased to report that our new Airport Visitor Center continues to live up to our expectations, servicing

    nearly 84,000 customers in 2013 and hitting our target goal of $225,000 in merchandise sales during our first full year of operation. We continue to win friends and influence people at the airport, taking full advantage of our prominent position on the secure side of the concourse.

    Finally, I would be remiss if I failed to mention the transition in leadership the organization experienced in 2013. After more than three years of exemplary

    leadership, Dottie Gallagher-Cohen stepped down as President and CEO in May to take on a similar role with the Buffalo Niagara Partnership. At that time, David Marzo, our Chief Financial Officer, assumed the additional role of Interim CEO. Dave performed his dual duties admirably while we conducted a national search for Dotties successor. In late November, we introduced Patrick Kaler, formerly President and CEO of the Loudoun County, Virginia Convention & Visitors Association, as Visit Buffalo Niagaras next Chief Executive Officer. I have every confidence that our organization and region are both poised for even greater success under Patricks leadership.

    Very truly yours,

    DENNIS P. MURPHY Chairman of the Board, Visit Buffalo Niagara President and CEO, InnVest Lodging Services

    The success of the 2013 HighEdWeb Conference was a

    particularly satisfying

    accomplishment.

    ON THE COVER: Speaker during the general session of the HigEdWeb Annual Conference, which generated 1,500 hotel room nights and had an estimated economic impact of over $1,000,000.

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    BUFFALO NIAGARA FILM COMMISSION

    1,325,102 Unique visits to

    visitbuffaloniagara.com, up 18.7% from 2012

    VBN MARKETING

    JUST THE FACTS: 2013 AT A GLANCESome of our greatest successes came on the marketing front, as VBN generated non-local media coverage with a total media value of nearly $1 million and increased the number of unique web visitors to visitbuffaloniagara.com to 1,325,102 (up 18.7 percent over 2012). VBNs sales team also produced solid results in 2013, securing 164,327 future hotel room nights; booking 443 conventions, meetings, amateur athletic events and group tours; and generating 823 sales leads. These efforts will result in $122 million in future economic impact.

    83 Out-of-town

    media hits

    83 Local media

    hits

    Record breaking

    figures are in red

    BUFFALO NIAGARA CONVENTION CENTER

    258 Days the Center was

    occupied

    151 Events hosted

    34,055 Hotel room nights utilized due to events at the Center

    BUFFALO NIAGARA SPORTS COMMISSION

    72,480 Hotel room nights

    92,187 Attendance

    225 Production days with

    Film Office involvement

    37 Projects

    completed

    54 Completed

    production scouts

    Media value of out-of-town media coverage

    Local direct spend due to Film Office activity

    $7.6 million

    VBN CONVENTION, SPORTS & GROUP TOUR SALES

    $122 millionFuture economic

    impact

    823 Future

    sales leads

    443 Conventions, meetings,

    amateur athletic events or group tours booked

    Hotel room nights booked

    164,327

    Amateur sporting events serviced

    in 2013

    129

    People attended events at the

    Convention Center

    294,384

    $993,000

  • 4Fresh Online Solutions: eBrains partnership continues to drive resultsVBN continued our

    engagement of

    eBrains, the online

    marketing agency

    that focuses on

    measurable returns

    via lead generation,

    email, search and

    display ads. Building

    on our highly

    successful 2012

    campaign that

    delivered 4,150 new

    visitor parties and

    more than $3 million

    in new spending

    an ROI of more

    than 30 to 1

    VBN charged

    eBrains with

    growing our cus-

    tomer database,

    managing our news-

    letters to engage and

    convert subscribers

    and deploying

    a contextual

    display advertising

    campaign to reach

    prospects when they

    are viewing content

    compatible with

    the VBN message. Messaging focused on arts/culture, history/

    heritage, family activities, Niagara Falls, gardening, shopping and

    the culinary sector.

    Employing this multifaceted strategy, eBrains delivered the

    following high-level metrics:

    14.6 million measured impressions of Buffalo Niagara

    89,417 clicks/visits to the site

    118,818 additional meaningful actions on the site past the click

    Texas A&M University will be engaged to conduct a conversion

    study to determine how many of these potential visitors came

    to Buffalo Niagara and the economic impact they left behind.

    The findings of the research study will be available in spring 2014.

    CANADIAN MARKETING INITIATIVE: Winning Hearts and Minds in Southern OntarioBuffalo Niagaras unique position on the Canadian border gives us enviable access to eight million potential visitors in southern Ontario. As a result of a $195,000 New York State Regional Economic Develop-ment Council grant, VBN and the Niagara Tourism & Convention Corp. were able to launch a Canadian Marketing Initiative in 2013. Designed to entice Canadians to do more while theyre here and visit more often, the initiative is grounded on in-depth customer research conducted on our behalf by Longwoods International and Protean Strategies. Employing this research to hone our message and identify the best prospects, VBN launched an all-digital presence (paid search, banners, social media) in this key market in November. Phase 1 of the consumer advertising campaign, which ran through Dec. 31st, delivered more than 18,000 engagements with the visitbuffaloniagara.com and niagara-usa.com websites by Canadian consumers. Phase 2 is currently underway and will run through the end of February 2014.

    A $250,000 grant from the Western New York Power Proceeds Allocation Board, matched by a $150,000 commit-ment from VBN and $100,000 from the NTCC, will enable the Canadian Marketing Initiative to continue throughout 2014.

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    Each year, a delegation of Visit Buffalo Niagara staff members

    and representatives from our regions retail districts and malls

    attend the National Womens Show

    in Toronto to drive more

    cross-border shopping.

    This year, they came

    equipped with a sleek

    new tool the 36-page

    Buffalo Niagara

    Shopping Guide,

    which includes maps,

    directions and insider tips

    on the best places to stay,

    play, shop and eat in Buffalo Niagara.

    2013 was another tremendous year for Buffalo in the

    national and international media. As a result of

    VBNs media relations work, The New York Times

    was particularly attentive to Buffalo in the year just

    past, running stories about the success of economic

    development initiatives at the Buffalo Niagara

    Medical Campus and the Larkin District, as well

    as pieces about the Buffalo Niagara International

    Airport, Garden Walk Buffalo and a feature in the

    Sunday Times Travel section devoted to the exciting

    developments at Canalside and elsewhere in the city.

    The Canadian media also set their sights on Buffalo

    in 2013. In November, the website for Chatelaine,

    Canadas largest circulation magazine, ran the story

    10 fantastic things to do in Buffalo, NY. Not to be

    outdone, Canada.com raved about Buffalos arts,

    culture and dining, titled Brilliant, resilient Buffalo

    New York. To round it all off, the Toronto Star ran

    an entire special section devoted to Buffalo in

    December. Other highlights included coverage in

    the Boston Globe, USA Today, Traditional Home

    and Long Weekends magazine.

    BUFFALO IN THE NEWS

    Guiding Canadians to Our Stores

  • 6The HighEdWeb Conference made full use of the state-of-the-art technology upgrades at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center.

    WEBSITE VISITORS

    VISITOR INFO ON-THE-GO

    508,875

    MOBILE VISITS TOTAL OF VISITS TO DEDICATED MOBILE SITE AND MAIN SITE VIA A MOBILE DEVICEJanuary 1-December 31, 2013

    3,111iPAD APP DOWNLOADSJanuary 1-December 31, 2013

    30%of all website visitors

    are from Canada

    UNITED KINGDOM

    GERMANYAUSTRALIA

    INDIA

    c d

    e f

    CALENDAR OF EVENTS

    446,998 pageviews

    SHOPPING442,146 pageviews

    FAMILY FUN137,265 pageviews

    TOP 5 COUNTRIES OF ORIGIN FOR NON-U.S. WEBSITE VISITORS

    MOST VISITED CONTENT

    TOTAL VISITS

    1,325,102An increase of 18.7% over 2012

    All Wired UpThe Buffalo Niagara

    Convention Center (BNCC)

    recently wrapped up a

    complete technology

    upgrade, made possible

    through support from the

    County of Erie and Empire

    State Development.

    The center received a total

    re-cabling of all public spaces

    in the building and the addition

    of a high-density wireless

    network covering the buildings

    110,000 square feet of meeting

    and event space.

    The upgrades have increased

    high-speed internet bandwidth

    by a factor of ten, allowing

    exhibitors and guests instant

    and unimpeded access to any

    applications they require.

    Highlights include:

    100 MB of bandwidth More than 240 data ports

    throughout the building

    70 wireless access points The ability to accommodate

    up to 7,000 devices

    Installation of 11 digital signage boards throughout

    the facility

    Free WiFi zone in the lobby

    CANADA

    b

    A DIGITALLY SAVVY DESTINATION

  • What do you do when 750 tech-savvy, self-

    described nerds come to your city? Blow their

    minds on social media.

    From October 5 to 9, Buffalo welcomed the

    HighEdWeb Annual Conference, attracting

    attendees from across North America. Visit

    Buffalo Niagara worked closely with the

    Buffalo Niagara Convention Center and the

    Hyatt Regency to create a robust social media

    plan that included:

    Surprising guests with random acts of kindness (like showing up with coffee when someone

    tweeted that they could use a caffeine boost)

    Running an Instagram contest that received 659 entries

    Activating our Tweet Team of more than 40 local social media influencers

    Responding to tweets on everything from nightlife to artisanal sausage.

    Along the way, VBN converted hundreds of

    strangers into ambassadors for Buffalo. Get a

    snapshot of what VBN and its partners did here:

    visitbuffaloniagara.com/HEWEB

    For years, Visit Buffalo Niagara has been an industry leader in social media. Our momentum in this space continued to grow in 2013.

    Between our pages for Visit Buffalo Niagara, The 716, Shopping in Buffalo, Buffalo Niagara Sports Commission and National Garden Festival, VBN had more than 138,000 Facebook fans as of

    December 31. We also created Vine and Google+ accounts and grew our Twitter account to 9,300 followers (an 80 percent increase), Instagram to 722 followers and Pinterest to 540 followers.

    FOLLOW THE LEADER

    Our Instagram contest captured the imaginations and focused the attention of the Higher Ed Web delegates, who found a visually

    appealing city outside the walls of the Convention Center.

    Strangers To Ambassadors In Five Days

    MORE THAN

    FACEBOOK FANS138,000

    7

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  • 8Hundreds of veterans converged on Buffalo last spring to compete in the National Veterans Golden Age Games.

    SMITH TRAVEL RESEARCH ERIE COUNTY HOTEL REPORT

    OCCUPANCY AVERAGE HOTEL RATE REVENUES 2013 65.4% $96.47 $217,886,799 2012 66.4% $93.92 $209,550,115 2011 66.1% $90.96 $197,823,142 2010 64.7% $87.45 $185,541,315

    ANOTHER RECORD-BREAKING YEAR FOR ERIE COUNTY HOTELSIn 2013, Erie County hotel revenues jumped 4 percent, the average rate charged by hotels rose 2.5 percent and monthly occupancy rates exceeded the national average

    for much of the year.

    90%

    80%

    70%

    60%

    50%

    40%

    ERIE COUNTY

    JAN

    NATIONAL AVERAGE

    FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

    43.5

    53.760.4

    63.0

    71.676.4

    83.8 85.8

    69.968.3

    60.0

    50.2

    47.5

    57.4

    64.7

    63.469.2

    71.1

    69.964.0

    63.7

    58.5

    51.0

    63.8

    MONTHLY OCCUPANCY PERCENTAGE, 2013

    A Golden OpportunityThe National Veterans Golden Age Games, May 30

    to June 4, brought 850 veterans and their families

    from around the country to Buffalo to compete in

    events ranging from swimming to basketball to

    checkers. The event had an estimated economic

    impact of $2.2 million.

    Color Us HappySome 10,000 people got covered in colored corn

    starch as they ran Buffalos inaugural Color Run

    along the waterfront on August 17. The estimated

    economic impact of the race was $239,795.

    MAJOR 2013 CONVENTIONS Arranged by estimated economic impactNAME ESTIMATED ECONOMIC IMPACT DATE ATTENDEESNew York State Board of Law Examiners $3,435,011 July 28 2,800New York State Board of Law Examiners $2,123,410 Feb. 24 1,800New York State Bureau of Emergency Medical Services $1,769,000 Oct. 24 2,000International F. & A.M. Masons & Order of Eastern Star $1,570,708 July 12 650New York State Public Employees Federation $1,559,854 Sep. 29 1,000 Agricultural Media Summit $1,444,344 Aug. 2 600 Department of New York Veterans of Foreign Wars $1,381,427 June 11 800National Association of Campus Activities $1,232,591 Oct. 15 1,200Higher Education Web Professionals Association $1,095,900 Oct. 5 750Multiple District 20 Lions Club of New York State and Bermuda $1,042,436 May 15 1,500Buffalo Niagara Dental Meeting $944,949 Sep. 23 2,000Alcoholism & Substance Abuse Providers of New York State $822,253 May 3 650American Association of Airport Executives $768, 151 Apr. 19 400Business Alliance for Living Economies $717,205 June 11 700Creating Keepsakes $682,420 May 15 1,000

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    LODGING EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR Lori Hint Courtyard by Marriott Buffalo Airport

    LODGING MANAGER OF THE YEAR Holly Homesburger Hyatt Regency Buffalo

    LODGING G.M. OF THE YEAR Jay Dellavecchia Hyatt Regency Buffalo

    TOURISM EMPLOYEE OF THE YEAR Patrick Kavanagh Forest Lawn

    TOURISM EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR William Vanecek Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority

    TOURISM INITIATIVE OF THE YEAR Culinary Tourism Christa Glennie Seychew

    TOURISM VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR Denise Prince Buffalo Tours

    TOURISM VOLUNTEER OF THE YEAR Phyllis W. Pierce

    Highlighting Our Industry

    2013 Beacon Award honorees (left to right): Denise Prince, William Vanacek, Holly Homesburger, Jay Dellavecchia, Lori Hint, Christa Glennie Seychew and Patrick Kavanagh.

    MAJOR JUMP IN VISITOR CENTER TRAFFICVisit Buffalo Niagaras two visitor centers, located on the secure side of the Buffalo Niagara International Airport and within the Market Arcade Building in downtown Buffalo, experienced growth in 2013. Between them, they answered 124,366 inquiries.

    TOTAL VISITOR CENTER INQUIRIES IN 2013

    124,366

    Approximately 600 guests joined VBN on May 1 for

    our third annual Travel & Tourism Beacon Awards

    Luncheon, where we recognized superior service

    throughout our industry, from volunteer docents to

    hotel general managers.

    Each year, the Tim Russert Award is presented to a

    worthy recipient who has demonstrated a long-term

    commitment to promoting Buffalo. The award winner

    is then inducted into the Buffalo Ambassador Hall of

    Fame. This years recipients were the members of the

    band The Goo Goo Dolls.

    Kathy Russert presenting the Tim Russert Award to The Goo Goo Dolls at the Travel & Tourism Beacon Awards luncheon.

    RIC

    H W

    ALL

    RIC

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    ALL

    2013 BEACON AWARD WINNERS

  • 10

    Tourism in Buffalo Niagara is big business and getting bigger, according to a study recently released by Tourism Economics, a unit of Philadelphia-based Oxford Economics. In fact, the Greater Niagara region along with Central New York had the highest growth rate (5.7%) of all of New York States vacation regions in 2012. The study concluded that Erie Countys travel and tourism industry generated nearly $1.6 billion in traveler spending in 2012, supported more than 20,000 jobs and created $490 million in direct labor income. The really good news is that tourism expenditures resulted in $105 million in local taxes and $86 million in state taxes in 2012, saving the average Erie County household $506 in taxes!

    VBN, together with our

    counterparts at Niagara Tourism

    Convention Corp (NTCC) applied

    for, and were awarded a

    $195,000 REDC grant to

    support a $600,000 marketing

    campaign in Canada. The tourism

    promotion agencies will contribu

    te

    $250,000 to the fund and will ra

    ise the additional $155,000 from

    its

    tourism partners who want to adv

    ertise in Canada. The campaign w

    ill

    seek to encourage Canadian shop

    pers to do more while visiting the

    region and also has a goal of incre

    mentally increasing visitation. Th

    e

    typical Canadian shopper makes a

    bout three trips a year to WNY to

    shop. The majority of day visitor

    s plan their visit within a week or

    so. We believe if they have more i

    nformation about all there is to do

    and see here in WNY they will visit

    more often, said VBN President &

    CEO Dottie Gallagher-Cohen. Can

    adian shoppers spend about

    $930 million in WNY each year.

    GET THE INSIDE SCOOP!VBNs Tourism Insider email newsletter grew

    to 3,190 subscribers an increase of about

    29 percent in 2013. Want to keep up on news

    related to Buffalos travel and tourism industry,

    from hotel stats to our latest videos to a list of

    upcoming conventions, meetings and amateur

    sporting events? Then sign up for the Tourism

    Insider at BuffaloAmbassador.com

    29%TOURISM INSIDER

    SUBSCRIPTIONS INCREASED

    Buffalo, In FocusThree-quarters of a million. Thats how many views

    VBNs videos have received on YouTube.

    In 2013, VBN continued our partnership with Paget

    Films to produce fresh, fun, high-quality videos

    about Buffalos art scene, the West Side Bazaar,

    family attractions, Frank Lloyd Wrights Buffalo and

    the experience of touring the city on a Segway or

    the Open-Air Autobus of Buffalo.

    VBN was also a major financial supporter of Paget

    Films short film Buffalo: Americas Best Designed

    City, which includes jaw-dropping aerial footage

    of Buffalo and looks at the history and future of our

    citys world-class urban design. In three months, this

    film attracted more than 150,000 YouTube views.

    Buffalo: Americas Best Designed City

    ArtBFLO

    Buffalo Niagara: Bring the Kids!

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    At The Movies: Promoting Buffalo as a Film Production Site

    On July 1 The Buffalo Niagara Film Office moved to its new home at WNY Public Broadcasting in downtown Buffalo. This move places the film office in a 24-7-production facility, which includes a 7,500 sq. ft. New York State Qualified Soundstage in the hub of downtown Buffalo.

    FILM OFFICE FINDS A NEW HOME

    Universal Studios Best Man Holiday shot at

    Ralph Wilson Stadium. This major studio feature

    film included the hiring of over 1,500 local extras

    over four days of shooting at the stadium and

    generated $1.5 million in direct local spending in

    Western New York.

    The History Channels Top Gear shot an episode on

    the streets of Buffalo and at Fort Niagara State Park.

    The Skyway was shut down providing a beautiful

    Buffalo backdrop for this episode, which featured

    various challenges for modified amphibious vehicles.

    Black Rose Films The Romans produced by

    Corey Green and Larry Quinn and starring Stephen

    Henderson and many up and coming local actors

    used the east side of Buffalo as the back drop for

    its modern day tale of gang warfare.

    Nike chose Buffalos Central Terminal and various

    other locations as the background for its Lunar One

    Shot Skateboard Shoe campaign, which will be seen

    internationally and features world famous members

    of the Nike Skateboard Team.

  • 12

    Cindy Abbott-Letro Law Offices of Francis A. LetroDonald K. Boswell WNY Public Broadcasting AssociationSteve Boyd Steve Boyd, P.C.Jonathan A. Dandes Rich Baseball OperationsDottie Gallagher-Cohen VBN/Buffalo Niagara PartnershipC. Douglas Hartmayer NFTARandall Kramer MusicalFare TheatreSusan M. LoTempio Lynn Marinelli Erie County LegislatureJohn J. Mills Erie County LegislatureKerry C. Mitchell

    Dennis P. Murphy InnVest Lodging Services, Inc.Minesh Patel Adams Mark HotelGary D. Praetzel, Ph.D. Niagara UniversityMary F. Roberts Martin House Restoration Corp.James T. Sandoro Buffalo Transportation / Pierce-Arrow MuseumPaul Snyder, III Snyder CorporationToni L. Vazquez Maria Whyte County of ErieLeslie H. Zemsky Larkin Square

    2013 VISIT BUFFALO NIAGARA BOARD OF DIRECTORS

    12

    Buffalo will welcome NCAA Mens Basketball Second and Third Round games back to the First Niagara Center on Thursday, March 20 and Saturday, March 22. This will mark Buffalos fifth time hosting the preliminary rounds of the tournament. Thousands of out-of-town basketball fans are expected to fill First Niagara Center to capacity and leave behind an estimated economic impact of more than $5.5 million.

    From June 4 to 7, Buffalo will host the 22nd annual Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU), attracting a projected 2,000

    attendees from all over the U.S., Canada and several other countries to town.

    The National Horseshoe Pitchers Association World Tournament, July 14 to 26, 2014, will bring some 1,500 participants and their friends and families to Buffalo.

    A $50,000 grant from the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council will enable VBN to promote the 20th anniversary of Garden Walk Buffalo and the 5th anniversary of the National Garden Festival.

    WHATS AHEAD IN 20142014 is shaping up to be another exciting year!

    Kaler Takes the LeadIn May, Visit Buffalo Niagara President and CEO Dottie Gallagher-Cohen moved on

    from the organization to assume the same role at the Buffalo Niagara Partnership.

    VBNs board of directors launched a national search to find her successor, and in

    November, the board introduced their selection, Patrick J. Kaler. Kaler comes to VBN

    from Visit Loudoun, the tourism agency for Loudoun County, Virginia located just

    outside of Washington, D.C., where he also served as president and CEO. Kaler has held

    several other senior tourism positions during his career, including senior director of

    travel industry and tourism development for the Los Angeles Tourism & Convention

    Board, executive director of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority and executive director

    for the Great Lakes of North America.

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    W2013 COMMITTEES OF VISIT BUFFALO NIAGARA AND THE BUFFALO NIAGARA CONVENTION CENTER MANAGEMENT CORPORATION

    CHAIR: Dennis P. Murphy InnVest Lodging Services, Inc.

    COMMITTEE MEMBERSJonathan A. Dandes Rich Baseball Operations

    Donald K. Boswell WNY Public Broadcasting Association

    Dottie Gallagher-Cohen VBN/Buffalo Niagara PartnershipMary F. Roberts Martin House Restoration Corp.Maria Whyte County of ErieGary D. Praetzel Niagara University

    Executive Committee

    STAFF: David Marzo Chief Financial Officer

    COMMITTEE MEMBERSTom Beiter Buffalo Niagara Convention CenterDottie Gallagher-Cohen VBN/Buffalo Niagara Partnership

    Lynn Marinelli Erie County LegislaturePaul Murphy Buffalo Niagara Convention CenterMary F. Roberts Martin House Restoration Corp.

    Budget/Finance/Audit Committee

    STAFF: Mike Even VP of Sales

    COMMITTEE MEMBERSPhil Alterio Buffalo Niagara Marriott Melissa Burke Buffalo Niagara Convention CenterDave Carroll Hart HotelsJay Dellavecchia Hyatt Regency BuffaloMark Dickerson Embassy Suites BuffaloJohn Dubreville Hale Northeastern Ann Dugan Buffalo Lodging

    Barb Hughes AAA Thomas Keane Hart HotelsBruce Kolesnick University at Buffalo John Malkus Hyatt Regency BuffaloRuss Papia Millennium HotelMinesh Patel Adams Mark Bonnie Phillips Martins Fantasy IslandMatt Spencer Comfort Suites Edwin Shelp Adams Mark

    Sales Committee

    CHAIR: Drew Cerza Just Wing It Productions STAFF: Ed Healy VP of MarketingCOMMITTEE MEMBERSJustin Azzarella Evergreen Association of WNYSteve Boyd Steve Boyd, P.C.Anthony Conte Sheas Performing Arts CenterC. Douglas Hartmayer NFTASusan M. LoTempio

    Nick Magnini WUTVAndy Major Buffalo BillsArt Page Rudi Rainer Super 8 HotelJames T. Sandoro Buffalo Transportation/

    Pierce-Arrow MuseumMargie Stehlik Martin House Restoration Corporation

    Marketing Committee

    STAFF: Paul Murphy Facility DirectorCOMMITTEE MEMBERSJohn J. Mills Erie County LegislatureRudi Rainer Super 8 Hotel

    James T. Sandoro Buffalo Transportation/ Pierce-Arrow Museum

    Jeff Zack County of Erie

    Convention Center Operations Committee

  • 14

    2013 BUFFALO NIAGARA CONVENTION CENTER STAFF

    CHAIR: Jonathan A. Dandes Rich Baseball OperationsTom Ahern Buffalo SabresGordon Anthony Canisius CollegeChris Aronica Aronica & AssociatesAdam Benigni Channel 2 NewsBrad Boyle Erie Community CollegeRuss Brandon Buffalo BillsMike Buczkowski Buffalo BisonsVic Carucci Cleveland BrownsBrian Cavanaugh DYouville CollegeTherese Forton-Barnes Events to a TSherry Frost Clarence SoccerRalph Galanti Erie Community College (retired)Mike Gentile Niagara UniversityKathleen Gregoire Skating Club of WNYEric Guzdek Northtown Center at AmherstJim Hanley Hanley Fishing ChartersC. Douglas Hartmayer NFTAPerry Jenkins University at BuffaloPeter Jerebko Erie Community College

    Ed Kilgore Channel 2 NewsBrian Kiszewski Monsignor Martin Athletic AssociationTom Koeller Buffalo State CollegeJohn Lambert University at BuffaloDan Loncto Fleet Feet BuffaloEd Lindsey Amateur Softball AssociationJohn Maddock Canisius CollegeBill Maher Canisius CollegeLynn Marinelli Erie CountyTom Marks Gr8 Lakes Fishing AdventuresJohn Murphy Buffalo BillsSister Maria Pares Buffalo Academy of the Sacred HeartRon Raccuia AdPro Team SportsEdward Rath Erie CountyDonald Reed University at BuffaloJeff Russo Channel 7 NewsBob Schell Amherst Youth HockeyLisa Scherer Ride for RoswellTimm Slade Section VI

    2013 BUFFALO NIAGARA SPORTS COMMISSION ADVISORY COUNCIL

    Melissa Bean Convention & Event Service Manager

    Tom Beiter ControllerMelissa Burke Senior Director of

    Sales and MarketingAngelo Canna, Jr. Food & Beverage Manager Lorna Cullen Executive AssistantMichelle Helles Convention Sales ManagerHeather Keller Sales & Service CoordinatorSusan Kimmins Sales & Catering ManagerCraig Landseadel Sous Chef

    MaryAnn Martin Accounting & Benefits ManagerSamuel Mendez Assistant Operations ManagerLeslie Millender Lobby ReceptionistPaul Murphy Facility DirectorTerry OBrien Operations ManagerKeith Pitman ElectricianKenneth Sandford Chief EngineerRaymond Thom Executive ChefRaymond Williams Timekeeper/Security Danielle Winiarski Convention & Event

    Service Manager

    Melissa Barrie Information SpecialistKathy Benzel Information Technology/ Online Content ManagerPeter Burakowski Communications ManagerMichele Butlak Accounting and Benefits ManagerGiovanni Centurione Information SpecialistLindsay Carucci Sport Services ManagerTim Clark Director, Buffalo Niagara Film CommissionKaren Cox Convention Services ManagerLinda DAgostino Director of Sales & Government RelationsDenise Drews Downtown Visitor Center ManagerMichael Even Vice President of Sales & ServicesKaren Fashana Marketing & Co-op Advertising ManagerDottie Gallagher-Cohen President & CEO

    Charles Giglia Director of Sports SalesPete Harvey Director of Sports DevelopmentEd Healy Vice President of MarketingJay Josker Sport Services ManagerCindy Sterner-Kincaide Director, Buffalo Ambassador

    ProgramTracy Martell Convention Services ManagerDavid Marzo Chief Financial OfficerLeah Mueller Tourism Sales DirectorDanielle Pappas Administrative AssistantMary Jane Poleto Airport Visitor Center ManagerJudy Smith Director of AdministrationMatt Steinberg Director of Creative ServicesRich Wall Operations Manager/

    Production Services, Buffalo Niagara Film Commission

    Lori White National Sales ManagerDionne Williamson National Sales Manager

    2013 VISIT BUFFALO NIAGARA STAFF

    IM GOING TO GET STRAIGHT TO THE POINT: GO TO BUFFALO THIS WEEKEND.

    CHATELAINE

  • 617 Main Street Suite 200 Buffalo, new York 14203 716.852.0511VISITBUFFALONIAGARA.COM

    If architecture is anything to go by, Buffalo ranks as one of the great cities of America.TORONTO STAR

    IM GOING TO GET STRAIGHT TO THE POINT: GO TO BUFFALO THIS WEEKEND.

    CHATELAINE

    With new waterfront bars , outdoor markets and upscale restaurants , developers are honoring original designs dating back to Buffalos heyday . THE NEW YORK TIMES

    BUFFALO WAS BRIMMING

    WITH ENERGY.THE BOSTON GLOBE

    Buffalo is an eclectic kind of city that offers so much for every type of traveler including experiences that wont soon be forgotten.CANADA.COM

    WHAT THEYRE SAYING ABOUT BUFFALO

    ...a casual visit to Parkside, and the older Victorian neighborhoods

    closer in to downtown, including the West Side, Richmond Avenue, Elmwood Village, and Allentown,

    suggests a thriving urban environment. Restaurants and art galleries are conspicuous. There is substantial

    bicycle and foot traffic. Grand old houses are being restored. A funky

    Bohemian vibe resonates.AMERICAN BUNGLAOW

    Elmwood Village, hands down, wins the prize for hippest place in Buffalo. Located

    in the heart of the city, accessible from Interstate 190, its a place where tattoo parlors and high-end hair salons and

    art galleries seamlessly co-exist.

    ERIE TIMES-NEWS