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Let’s Bring the World to

Coronavirus pandemic ravaged California's travel economy in 2020.

$65.1B
Visitor Spending
$6.1B
State & Local Tax Revenues
*Statistics reflect the 2020 calendar year. Source: Dean Runyan Associates, Inc.
CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE JOURNEY
Visit California Supports U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree Journey Across America

By Dan Smith
Posted 25 days ago

Visit California is proudly co-sponsoring the cross-country journey of “Sugar Bear,” the 84-foot White Fir tree harvested in Six Rivers National Forest and destined to be this year’s official Christmas Tree at the U.S. Capitol.

In conjunction with the United States Forest Service, Sugar Bear was harvested Oct. 24 and loaded onto a climate-controlled 110-foot tractor-trailer rig. The tradition of harvesting the Capitol Christmas tree from a different National Forest began in 1970. This is the fifth time in 51 years that the tree has hailed from the Golden State.

The tree made 12 stops in California, including the Capitol in Sacramento, before heading east on Nov. 6. Other stops are scheduled in Arizona, New Mexico, Arkansas, Missouri and Maryland before arriving at the Capitol building on Nov. 19.

At a noon hour Nov. 3 ceremony at the state Capitol, Visit California President and CEO Caroline Beteta joined Sen. Mike McGuire, California Natural Resources Secretary Wade Crowfoot, USFS Regional Forester Jennifer Eberlien , Chairman John Elgin of the Lassic Band of the Wylacki-Wintoon Family Group and the California State University, Sacramento Jazz Choir, in a celebration of the tree.

 

Caroline Beteta

Beteta noted the theme under which the tree was harvested -- "six rivers, many peoples, one tree" -- syncs with the message Visit California amplifies with visitors.

“This name symbolizes the diversity of the national forest,” she said. “And it also symbolizes the grand diversity we enjoy and celebrate in California. Our message is, All Dreams Welcome, and the people of California – our ambassadors – every one of you here today - prove it every day.”

The event included a sing-along with the jazz choir and special appearances from Santa Claus, Smokey Bear and Woodsy the Owl.

Several events are planned around the tree in Washington D.C. starting Nov. 29 with a welcome reception, followed by a California state breakfast on the Nov. 30 and the tree lighting and congressional reception on Dec. 1.

Meet What's Possible logo
Visit California's Professional Meetings & Events Platform Launched at IMEX 2021

By Leona Reed
Posted 14 days ago

Visit California President and CEO Caroline Beteta launched the $4.5 million Meet What’s Possible platform at IMEX America, the largest meetings trade show in the U.S., which ran Nov. 8-10 in Las Vegas. This is Visit California’s first platform focused solely on the professional meetings and events industry and a vital initiative in the overall recovery of California’s tourism industry.

Joined by CEOs from some of the state’s top meetings destinations, Beteta laid out a high-level view of what makes California a smart choice for meeting planners — more airports, more hotels and more meeting space. The state's business amenities are coupled with year-round temperate weather and attractions, providing ample opportunity to extend business trips into "bleisure" vacations. With a focus on sustainability, innovation and COVID-19 safety, California welcomes groups of all kinds to take advantage of the Golden State's world-class meetings and events accommodations.  

Caroline Beteta and tourism industry CEOs at IMEX America

IMEX America was the perfect environment to jumpstart the Meet What's Possible platform, with more than 3,000 buyers, media and other major players in the industry on site to learn about Meet What's Possible.

California’s tourism industry was well-represented with 249 delegates, including 23 DMO partners. The delegation conducted hundreds of one-on-one meetings at the first major meetings trade show since the recent re-opening of international borders. Partners displayed localized Meet What’s Possible branding prominently in their booths, complementing a large-format banner that spanned several aisles on the trade show floor.

localized versions of the Meet What's Possible logo

Visit California also hosted a wine reception on the trade show floor for all attendees and participated as a major sponsor of the MPI Rendezvous finale party. An evening event for DMO partners provided an opportunity to share business travel insights and gain familiarity with the organization’s new meetings and events strategy.

Having long been a leader in the global tourism industry, Visit California now aims to bring its decades of expertise to the professional meetings industry. An industry task force will shape the future of this important initiative and work together to create a unified message of welcome to meeting planners and executives to take advantage of the Golden State’s dynamic mix of business venues and leisure travel appeal.

 

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“Visit California worked with us to evaluate ongoing challenges, track consumer insights and create communication platforms to address key stakeholder issues.”
VICE CHAIR OF MARKETING KAREN IRWIN | PRESIDENT & COO; EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT
UNIVERSAL STUDIOS HOLLYWOOD; UNIVERSAL PARKS & RESORTS
Industry Team

Leading California Forward

Visit California's industry-led Commission comprises
leaders from all corners of the Golden State's travel landscape.