XENIA — The Greene County Convention Visitors Bureau (CVB) gave its quarterly update at last week’s Greene County Commissioners meeting.
“As a department within the county, we provide updates to the commissioners periodically throughout the year,” Greene County CVB Executive Director Kathleen Wright said. “It keeps them in the know and allows us to share our accomplishments.”
Although the CVB has had to deal with COVID during the past year, Wright said that the organization continued to operate smoothly.
“It has not been difficult for us to operate. However, we did change our direction from promoting the county globally to local and regional,” Wright said. “It was our goal to help the community by promoting local attractions, businesses, and events.”
The CVB did experience a multitude of cancellations.
“All, but a few of our booked events cancelled for 2020 and many have rescheduled for later in 2021 and 2022,” Wright said. “This year was off to a slow start with several larger events cancelling, but the summer and fall has taken a positive turn and many events are moving forward.”
Revenues for the CVB did experience a steep decline. As a direct result of the COVID shutdown and pandemic restrictions, Greene County’s lodging tax was reduced by 48 percent. Wright said that the tourism and hospitality industry took a direct hit that made deficits unavoidable.
“Our department budget was cut nearly 48 percent to offset our loss in 2020,” Wright said.
With the uncertainty of the past year, the CVB utilized its time effectively. The department educated through various free webinars, online training courses, and graphic design and photography tutorials. Its CRM database was updated and its website was improved too.
Now that COVID-19 vaccines are available and some type of normalcy is returning, the CVB is experiencing an uptick in activity. A lot of former events and new events are returning to Greene County.
“We have a full schedule of sporting events and many events that previously cancelled are now rescheduling for the summer and fall,” Wright said.
Wright laid out the CVB’s plan for approaching various entities about creating events for Greene County.
“As a CVB, we are designed to market our destination to the traveling public and provide area resources and advice to tourists, event, and meeting/group planners,” Wright said. “Our job is to support, advertise, and promote them. We utilized social media and promoted our local stakeholders, business, and community events.”
As far as how COVID-19 restrictions and safety measures will play roles in events held in Greene County go, Wright said that event restrictions will be the preference of the venue, business, and/or event planners to decide.
Reach Darryl McGee at 937-502-4534