Members of the tourism sector filled the State House
on Wednesday to advocate for an increased focus on marketing the state.
Among stories shared that day was one from the creative sector. Whitney Ramage, artist and co-founder of
, noted that "77ART brings as many as forty-five early-career artists per year to Rutland. These professionals are working at the cutting edge of culture production and now they have the chance to enjoy the beauty, hospitality, and resources that are unavailable to them in the urban centers they call home. I believe that art is the secret sauce when it comes to economic and cultural development and Rutland has given me the chance to put this notion to the test. "
Arts and cultural experiences drive tourism. Vermont's arts and culture industry leveraged $44 million in event-related spending in 2015 (that's not including the cost of admission;
according to this data
). When people attend a cultural event they also eat dinner in local restaurants, pay for parking, buy gifts and souvenirs, and stay overnight.
You can show support for increasing tourism promotion funding. Sign this online petition, contact your local legislators and the governor's office, or use the additional resources available in the toolkit on the campaign landing page.