Johnny Appleseed Trail Association hosting Second Annual Tourism Update Breakfast

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Johnny Appleseed Trail Association hosting Second Annual Tourism Update BreakfastJohnny Appleseed Trail Association hosting Second Annual Tourism Update Breakfast

Forum to bring together tourism related businesses and organizations in the region

The Johnny Appleseed Trail Association (JATA) and the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce are pleased to announce the second annual Tourism Update Breakfast being held on Thursday, March 2, 2017 at Great Wolf Lodge New England, 150 Great Wolf Drive, Fitchburg, MA. This exciting and fast paced breakfast event features industry experts who will share their professional insights on marketing North Central Massachusetts. The 2017 breakfast program is sponsored by Great Wolf Lodge New England.

Lori Harnois, Executive Director of Discover New England, will discuss international travel and how international travelers have a huge impact on local businesses. Discover New England, founded in 1992, works in partnership with the state tourism offices of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont to promote New England tourism internationally. Harnois received her Bachelor of Science degree in Tourism Planning and Development, with a minor in Sociology, from the University of New Hampshire. She has 17 years of experience in the field of marketing, promotions and operations. Previously, she worked for the New Hampshire Division of Travel and Tourism Development holding such roles as Director and International Marketing Manager. Through these roles she was responsible for promoting New Hampshire as a domestic and international travel destination in order to increase visitation, travel expenditures, business activity, and employment throughout the state. She also oversaw the NH Bureau of Visitor Services. She is a board member of the US Travel Association, the Eastern State Exposition, and a member of the Granite State Ambassadors.

North Central’s own Ned LaFortune, President of Wachusett Brewery will provide an industry update and highlight the brewery’s marketing efforts. Wachusett Brewery has grown exponentially since coming together in 1993 and is now one of the leaders of the craft beer market in New England. As one of the founders, Ned will also discuss the brewery’s impact and partnerships which support tourism growth throughout North Central Massachusetts.

Tony D’Agostino, has been with the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism for more than ten years as the Director of Research. In that time, D’Agostino’s main projects have been related to studying the volume of tourists, visitors and the economic impact of tourism spending in Massachusetts. These reports support the marketing initiatives and activities of the sixteen regional tourism councils across the Commonwealth. Mr. D’Agostino’s presentation will highlight visitor trends, top visitor markets and the impact of tourism for the state and region.

“Tourism is important to the future of North Central Massachusetts and plays an increasingly important role in our local economy” said Roy Nascimento, president of the Johnny Appleseed Trail Association. “We organize this annual program as a way to bring tourism related stakeholders in the region together to share best practices, learn new trends in the industry and to take advantage of new opportunities to better market local businesses and the region to visitors.”

The Tourism Update Breakfast is open to all community members and will run from 7:30 am to 9:30 am. The cost is just $20 for JATA and North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce members/$30 for non-members and includes a breakfast buffet. Registration can be done online at Pre-registration is required. For more information or to register, please contact the Chamber at 978-353-7600 ext. 235 or visit