Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association celebrates the “Future of Travel” during National Travel & Tourism Week

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SULLIVAN CATSKILLS — National Travel and Tourism Week, the annual celebration of the contributions of the U.S. travel industry, is spotlighting the critical role that travel will play in driving economic growth and building the path forward through the theme “Future of Travel.”

This year’s theme elevates how the travel industry can restore the workforce, help communities recover, foster sustainability, usher in new innovations and reconnect travelers in the U.S. and around the world.

“In Sullivan County, tourism is at the heart of our economy and in the history of our culture. Going back to before the days of commercial air travel, the Borscht Belt of Dirty Dancing fame made the Catskills a preeminent summer getaway,” said State Senator Mike Martucci, who represents Sullivan County. “Today, world-class gaming and entertainment, an ever-expanding network of trails and outdoor recreational facilities, and quaint, sleepaway towns have revived Sullivan County’s national reputation as a must-visit travel and tourism hub. On this National Travel and Tourism Week, I offer that—no matter your ​interests—there is no finer destination than the Sullivan County Catskills.”

“The tourism industry is extremely important to the economy of Sullivan County, and over the past few years visitors to our county have grown in leaps and bounds,” said State Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther. “It has been my pleasure to support projects that enhance tourism, which are vital to the Sullivan Catskills and surrounding region.” 

“We are planning for a future that will strengthen the Sullivan Catskills tourism industry and economy,” remarked SCVA President/CEO Roberta Byron-Lockwood. “This National Travel and Tourism Week, we are spotlighting how we are a world-class destination for travelers as well as strengthening the connections of our business community in our own backyard.”

“It’s important to recognize and celebrate National Travel and Tourism Week–especially here in our beautiful Sullivan Catskills, where tourism is a vital cultural and economic engine,” said Forestburgh Playhouse Producing Artistic Director and SCVA Executive Board Member, Franklin Trapp. “Tourism promotes development, change and growth and I know those of us at the Forestburgh Playhouse and the Sullivan Catskills Visitors Association are poised and ready to provide amazing experiences for our visitors!”

According to data from Tourism Economics, tourism in the Catskills region is a $1.6 billion industry, supporting 19,938 jobs. Were it not for tourism-generated state and local taxes, the average household in Sullivan County would have to pay an additional $2,407 to maintain the same level of government services. 

Looking ahead to the future, the SCVA is currently working with Berkeley Young of Young Strategies and Destination Next to create a new strategic plan, which will guide the organization in the coming years. Responses from the travel market research study will help SCVA in aligning customer experiences and values with our brand.

“Tourism has long been one of our top industries, and that value is only going to increase in the years to come—as is the investment this county will make in bolstering our tourism infrastructure,” said Chairman of the Sullivan County Legislature, Robert Doherty. 

“The Sullivan County Catskills have been leaders in the tourism industry for many decades and there is no better time to come visit with friends and family,” said Sullivan County District 8 Legislator and Chair of the Economic Development Committee, Ira Steingart. “It’s just what you need to reboot and deal with the stresses of everyday life. You’ll go home a new person.”

For more information about the SCVA, please visit www.sullivancatskills.com or call 845-747-4449.