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TOURISM NEWS & NOTES 
                                                                                                          JANUARY 2018
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Prince George's County Tourism News & Notes is presented by the Prince George's County Conference & Visitors Bureau (CVB), the official Destination Marketing Organization of Prince George's County, Maryland. 

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Surratt House Museum, Clinton

Suburban Maryland Home Show
Show Place Arena - Jan 27-28
 
Joe's Movement Emporium, Mount Rainier

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BRAND ATTACK: CVB'S EXPERIENCE PRINCE GEORGE'S CAMPAIGN IN EFFECT
Travelers experience the PGC brand across multiple platforms, including BWI, Reagan, METRO; 2nd flight planned for spring...
Is that you Prince George's County? Yes...it is. 
The "Experience Prince George's" (EPG) marketing campaign is making a statement - Prince George's is the place to be. The first flight kicked-off during the travel-busy holiday season and the subsequent second flight will begin in spring.

EPG is an integrated campaign of digital, social and signage complimenting our traditional regional and national marketing efforts.  EPG's ads and sponsored posts can be seen during select scheduled flights across a variety of platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Waze, Pandora, and Google. 

During the holidays, EPG covered the  SOUTHWEST Airlines jetbridges at BWI with colorful signage. Select areas at Reagan National also displayed the EPG message. In addition, EPG could be seen on eight digital kiosk displays at National Harbor. There's also billboards around the region at select interstate points (leading toward Prince George's). 
 
To capture the daily transit crowd and DMV tourists, there were 14 animated digital (pictured above, click here to see rotation) across 14 METRO stations and 30 rail posters across 20 METRO stations thru December. EPG signage at METRO will begin appearing again in the spring. 

The purpose is simple - establish the PGC brand and capture travelers & tourists, while bringing awareness to the extraordinary things to see, do and experience in Prince George's County. The end game - increasing visitors (and their dollars spent) at PGC attractions, events, restaurants, hotels, and related travel amenities.

 
Milkboy Arthouse, College Park

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LION'S ROAR: IN 1ST YEAR, MGM ALL THAT & A BAG OF CHIPS
With a year under its belt, MGM National Harbor rises to the top and quickly becomes region's #1 casino...
There's no escaping the fact that MGM National Harbor is king of the jungle. In short order, the Prince George's County resort and gaming palace has become one of Maryland's top attractions.  And, here's the kicker - it's one of Washington DC's flame-hot destinations as well (despite not being in DC). In Uber and Lyft's 2017 city tally, MGM was recognized by both as one of DC's top-requested drops. It was also recognized as the city's "Trending Destination" with a 2017 Lyftie Award. That kind of play from both signifies serious traction .  

And, we're just getting started. Last month, MGM marked its first anniversary while cementing itself as Maryland's #1 casino. In its first 12 months of opps, MGM raked in over $650 million in gaming revenue. That's almost $58 million more than Maryland's #2 casino, despite having fewer slots (VLTs) and table games. 

As the ship on a cliff at National Harbor, MGM has attracted six million visitors, and has been an absolute media magnet. All while gloriously adding entertainment, nightlife, dining, and the lux-factor to the PGC scene.  MGM has also proven to be a fitting and supportive community player. Let's look at the numbers: 

EDUCATIONAL AID: Approximately $150 million to the Maryland Education Trust Fund, m aking MGM National Harbor the largest contributor in the state to the education fund. 

PHILANTHROPIC MILL: Over $1 million in contributions to the following institutions:  Prince George's Community College, Bowie State University, the University of Maryland College Park, and the Community Foundation of Prince George's County.

SPREADING THE WEALTH: Just Under $400 million to minority owned businesses: Both during the construction phase and ongoing operations, with a commitment of engaging with local minority owned businesses, partnering with over 100 Prince George's County businesses.

EMPLOYING OUR OWN: Hiring directly from the area community, with  almost half of MGM employees being residents of Prince George's County. 

COMMUNITY GIFT: Improving the county's once-vacant, former Thomas Addison Elementary School in Oxon Hill, which served as the initial MGM training and recruitment facility.  Over $6 million in improvements were made to Addison, which will be awarded back, made available for Oxon Hill community use beginning this year. 

Well done MUFASA!!!!
 
Ritchie Coliseum, College Park

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ARTFULLY DONE: EXHIBIT BRINGS CIVIL WAR'S AFRICAN AMERICAN SOLDIERS TO LIFE
Special exhibit 17 PORTRAITS on display at Montpelier Mansion thru March 11...
A very special Civil War-era exhibit is now on display at Laurel's Montpelier Mansion -  Civil War Soldiers: Discovering the Men of the 25th United States Colored Troops.

This unique exhibit was created by artist and genealogist  Shayne Davidson. It consists of 17 life-sized colored pencil portraits based on rare, identified photos of a group of African-American men who served together for the Union in the 25th United States Colored Troops, Company G. 

Each man is depicted as an individual. His pose, expression, uniform and record are unique to him, yet seen together the portraits also create a group portrait of African-American men who participated together in a pivotal event in United States history. 

The portraits are based on tiny photos from a long-forgotten album, now almost 150 years old, owned by the company captain, William A. Prickett. The text on the portraits was transferred from actual military records. A brief biography, based on Davidson's research into the lives of the men, is included with each portrait.

The exhibit runs thru March 11 and is sponsored in part by Tiger Presentations. Historic Montpelier Mansion is located at 9650 Muirkirk Road, Laurel, 20708.

 
Milkboy Arthouse, College Park

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METER MADE: PARKMOBILE NOW AVAIL FOR PRINCE GEORGE'S PARKING 
Friendly app, widely used thru-out the DMV, now avail for 800 PGC metered parking spots...
Parkmobile's slogan is "Parking Made Simple" and we can vouch for that. We use Parkmobile extensively when selecting a spot along the mean streets of the DMV (and across the Mid Atlantic). So, on the tourism tip, its wonderful news that Parkmobile and Prince George's County have partnered to make the service avail at 800 metered spaces across PGC. 

County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III said it best... "Prince George's County has quickly become a 'place to be' for visitors, shoppers, and sightseers from throughout the region, state, and from around the nation. With new restaurants, stores, and attractions, means more of a need for effective and efficient parking systems. I am proud that the Prince George's County's Revenue Authority has partnered with industry-leader Parkmobile to provide ease to our residents and visitors to pay for parking through the Parkmobile App. Parkmobile has a well known reputation throughout the National Capital Region and we welcome their app service to Prince George's County."

 
Milkboy Arthouse, College Park


 
HEAD OF CLASS: UMD EARNS TWO U-VEE BEST OF AWARDS 
UMD valued venues, conference services earn 5th Unique Venues award in three years...
Cheers are in order for Terp Town. Last month, the University of  Maryland received two illustrious UVees. For the 2017 Unique Venues "Best of Awards", UMD College Park was named "Best Venue for Unique or Locally Sourced Catering" and "Best Venue for Youth/Sports Groups". It's the second year in a row that UMD has won two awards.  In the last three years, UMD has been awarded a total of five UVees.

The UVee "Best of Awards" are voted on by a readership of 55,000+ planners across 19 categories. The awards  recognizes the standout  campuses, conference and business centers, sports arenas, historical and cultural  venues, camps and retreat centers, and other special event venues that wowed
guests in 2017. 

There's more to the UMD campus then you thought. For info regarding UMD spaces and places, contact the office of  UMD Conferences & Visitor Services
 
Milkboy Arthouse, College Park


 
DINER'S DISH: SEVERAL PGC RESTAURANTS MAKE "OPEN TABLE" BEST LISTS
In annual tally of diners' choice, several Prince George's County spots make their mark...
 

I'll have what they're having, please! Diners have spoken, amplifying the fact that the PGC dine scene is making positive noise in the DMV. A number of PGC spots made OpenTable's year-end "Best Restaurants" list for the Maryland burbs and Washington, DC DMV. 

The "Best Restaurants" list is generated solely from diner reviews collected between November 1, 2016 , and October 31, 2017 . All restaurants with a minimum "overall" score and number of qualifying reviews were included for consideration. Qualifying restaurants were then sorted according to a score calculated from each restaurant's average rating in the "overall" category. Here are the county dines among the best in the area:

DINERS CHOICE - BEST OF THE WASHINGTON, DC AREA
Brunch: 
Pienza/Gaylord National Harbor
Kid Friendly: 
Pienza/Gaylord National Harbor
Late Night Find: 
SoBe Restaurant & Lounge/Lanham
Outdoor Dining: 
McLoone's Pier House/National Harbor
Scenic View: 
Sauciety/Westin National Harbor
Most Booked 1k-Point Tables: 
McCormick & Schmick's National Harbor
Asian: 
Grace's Mandarin/National Harbor; Ginger/MGM National Harbor
Greek: 
Kapnos Taverna/College Park
Southern: 
Succotash/National Harbor

DINERS CHOICE - BEST OF MARYLAND DC-SUBURBAN
Ambiance: 
Grace's Mandarin, National Harbor; SoBe Restaurant & Lounge/Lanham
Italian: 
Bond 45/National Harbor
Good For Groups: 
Pienza/Gaylord National Harbor
Great For Brunch: 
Pienza/Gaylord National Harbor
Healthy: 
Old Maryland Grill (OMG)/College Park
Hot Spots: 
SoBe Restaurant & Lounge/Lanham
Kid Friendly: 
Pienza/Gaylord National Harbor; Fiorella Italian Kitchen/National Harbor 
Most Notable Wine List: 
Old Maryland Grill (OMG)/College Park
Outdoor Dining: 
McLoone's Pier House/National Harbor; Redstone American Grill/National Harbor
Romantic: 
SoBe Restaurant & Lounge/Lanham; Old Hickory Steakhouse/Gaylord National Harbor
Scenic View: 
Sauciety/Westin National Harbor; McLoone's Pier House/National Harbor; McCormick & Schmick's/National Harbor; Redstone American Grill/National Harbor; Bond 45/National Harbor; Rosa Mexicano/National Harbor; Grace's Mandarin/National Harbor
Most Vibrant Bar Scene: 
SoBe Restaurant & Lounge/Lanham; Granite City Food & Brewery/National Harbor

Much appreciation to OpenTable and the many diners who use it as their go-to dine source in Prince George's. OpenTable  is the world's leading provider of online restaurant reservations.
 
Marietta House Museum, Glenn Dale
  

DOUBLE TAKE: MGM & GNAT BOTH EARN PLATINUM CHOICE AWARD
In the highly competitive industry, Gaylord and MGM ranked among the very best by meeting planners and industry experts...
 

We didn't have room for this in our previous issue, but felt it too important to let slide. 

Two meeting venues in Prince George's County were recognized with a Smart Meetings 2017 Platinum Choice Award. Making the illustrious list were the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center and MGM National Harbor. 

Smart Meetings magazine's  highly coveted award salutes excellence in service and amenities among  meeting hotels and resorts  in the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. Also recognized is exceptional service by  destination marketing companies and CVBs  from across North America.

Smart Meetings reviews thousands of qualified props and associations to select the top tier winners.  Recipients of the award have demonstrated exemplary standards of excellence ranging from ambiance, amenities, breadth of resources, facility quality, guest services, meeting space and packages, recreational activities, restaurant and dining options, and technical support. Votes are cast by industry professionals, the Smart Meetings editorial team and Smart Meetings readers.

Round of applause to GNat, MGM, and the wonderful staff at both venues for achieving Platinum status!
 
Bowie Center for the Performing Arts, Bowie


JANUARY - EXCITING HAPPENINGS ALL THIS MONTH IN PGC!
Experience.Expand.Explore! Extraordinary things are HAPPENING this month and every month in Prince George's. The colored banners throughout "News&Notes" are just some of the many events on tap. Click them for more information and VISIT US ONLINE - ExperiencePrinceGeorges.com (or on the ExplorePrinceGeorges mobile app) for extended listings of events, exhibitions, and performances for the entire family.
JANUARY Events>>    
 
The Clarice, UMD, College Park


BY THE NUMBERS: TOURISM'S IMPACT IN PGC
Prince George's County Tourism's impact - thru visitation and taxes generated - runs across every aspect of development including lodging, food & beverage, retail, recreation, major events, transportation, and transportation-related services.
  • Visitors - 6.922 million
  • Visits by Type - 52% Day; 48% Overnight
  • Visitor Growth Rate - 6.2%
  • Total Tourism Employment - 32,726
  • Tourism Industry Sales - $2.612 billion
  • Room Taxes Collected - $28.8 million
  • Admission/Amusement Taxes Collected - $16.7 million
  • Total Tourism Tax Receipts (combined Federal, State/Local, Hotel) - $638 million
Source: Tourism Economics, December 2016
 
ARTS/Harmony Hall Regional Center, Fort Washington

 
9200 Basil Court, Suite 101,  Largo, MD 20774
301.925.8300 |  visitorinfo@co.pg.md.us

 

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The Clarice, UMD, College Park

 

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