South Dakota Office of Tourism - sitemap

Monthly Reports: April 2004

April 2004

   MEMORANDUM TO:  Jim Hagen

   DATE: May 7, 2004

   FROM: Patricia Van Gerpen

   SUBJECT: Tourism’s April Monthly Status Report

You may download and print the entire April Report  in Adobe Acrobat (PDF).


2010 Initiative
Rural Tourism Development
Public Relations
Group Tour
Film Office
Information Centers
Lewis and Clark Promotions
Native American Tourism
Travel Market Advertising

Travel News Television
World Wide Web

Logo Usage
Korean War Memorial
Great Shoulder Events
Department Funding


Completed the first draft of the niche marketing portion of the 2010 Initiative. 

Held Tourism Idea Exchanges in each tourism region of the state: Sioux Falls, Aberdeen, Rapid City, and Pierre.  Reviewed sections of the 2004 Annual Report, gave overview of Tourism’s budget, outlined the 2004 Peak Season campaign, and updated all on the status of Goal 1 goals.  Staff led roundtables to discuss key programs – group, outdoors, Information Centers, film, and rural tourism/Lewis and Clark – and had appointments to discuss the co-op advertising programs.  Staff from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development had appointments to discuss their finance programs, which includes Tourism’s Sub-fund.  There were 155 people who attended the meetings, and follow-up letters and information were sent to each.

Accomplished tasks related to transferring the site to the state’s server. 

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Attended Capitol for a Day in Yankton and toured a building being renovated.

Presented information on Tourism’s co-op programs to attendees at the Southwest South Dakota Tourism Conference in Martin and reviewed the print pieces Tourism produces.

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Fact checked South Dakota information for the Woodall’s Campground Directory.

For National Tourism Week (NTW), May 8-16, completed changes to newspaper ads per requests from CTB/CVBs in Pierre, Sioux Falls, Rapid City, Huron, Brookings, Aberdeen, Mitchell, Watertown, and Spearfish.  Mailed media teasers to in-state media, and began arranging interviews at KCCR, KMIT, KORN, KQRN, KJJQ and KWAT.  Provided information to CVBs for newsletters and initial media calls.  Made Beta and DV dubs of the TV spot and sent to stations to run during NTW.  Recorded voice track for the radio spot and requested that they send the radio spot to the proper stations.

Worked on “Vacation Planning Day” at Citibank in Sioux Falls to be held on May 13.  Staff from the Office of Tourism, Department of Game, Fish and Parks, and tourism representatives from across the state will set up booths at Citibank’s “Citi-Terrace” from 10:30 am to 7 pm.  We will assist the 3,000 Citibank employees in planning a South Dakota vacation.

Hosted a Home and Away magazine writer on a trip across South Dakota on I-90 for an article slated to run in April 2005. 

Continued developing a golfing fam for media along the Lewis and Clark Trail.

Worked with a public relations agency to set up a fam trip in the northern Black Hills and Deadwood in May.

Provided information and/or interviews to Aberdeen American News; Sturgis Rally Department; Aberdeen Area Chamber of Commerce; Midwest Living for South Dakota road races and for great travel packages for Father’s Day; KELO-TV reporter in Washington, DC; Car & Driver; Golf Digest; Travel West; Sioux City Journal; Prairie Business magazine; North Platte Telegraph, Nebraska; and The Eckert Team, Virginia.

Press hits with circulation and estimated ad equivalence: Capitol City Journal (4,636) five articles for ad equivalence of $413; Rapid City Journal (35,465) four articles for ad equivalence of $4,028; Aberdeen American News (18,000) two articles for ad equivalence of $1,025; Argus Leader (73,167) for ad equivalence of $4,356; Dakota Outdoors (7,500) for ad equivalence of $568; Ames Tribune (12,000) for ad equivalence of $1,374; St. Petersburg (FL)Times (392,184) for ad equivalence of $76,590; Markee (21,000) for ad equivalence of $4,985; and More (950,000) for ad equivalence of $4,500.  Total ad equivalence of $97,839.

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Continued updating over 230 listings of co-op partners in the Group Tour Planning Guide (GTP) for the 2005-2006 publication.  Partner listings are placed on TourSDakota, a site developed for group tour operators.  Worked with Aberdeen on revisions for the Hwy 12 sample itinerary in the GTP.

Continued preparations for the Spring Group Tour Operators Fam planned for June for 25 participants from Nevada, Michigan, Texas, Wisconsin, New Mexico, New York, Minnesota, Connecticut, California, South Carolina, and Germany.  Stops are planned in Rapid City, Black Hills, Badlands, Mitchell, and Sioux Falls.

Added over 150 tour operator leads to for those South Dakota suppliers who would like to target group tour operators, seemingly generated by itineraries in the 2Nation Tours guide.

Assisted North Dakota Tourism with itinerary suggestions for Swanson’s Travel, Sweden, for a 12-day trip through South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming.

Met with 72 tour operators and journalists at Tourism Industry Association of America’s (TIA) Pow Wow, along with four co-op partners from South Dakota.  These international leads – along with the appointments from other partners in the Rocky Mountain International marketing consortium – will be shared with the 605 South Dakota suppliers who’ve expressed an interest in the international market.  The leads from TIA Pow Wow are different from those from the National Tour Association and the American Bus Association (NTA/ABA) marketplace leads.  Since NTA/ABA are paid memberships by individuals/organizations, leads from these two marketplaces are shared with/by the South Dakota NTA/ABA members.

Completed follow up with information packets to journalists and tour operator contacts/appointments: eight from World Travel Market; 34 from the France reception/tradeshow; 24 from Showcase Italy tradeshow; and 19 from the Benelux tradeshow.

Sent requested information and/or photos to First Bank and Trust, Iowa; Lakefront Lines, Inc., Ohio; Tours to Perfection, Georgia; Minnesota Girl Scout troop; LTD and FQCC, Canada; Sun CIAJ, Mostra de Turisme Juvenil, Spain; Fehr-Way Tours and Sun Travel, Taiwan; Sky Reps, Italy; Walter Kreuzer, Germany; and Jetset, France.

Finalized arrangements for the Dutch newspaper, Algemeen Dagblad.  The Dutch writer’s stories will focus on the Lewis and Clark Trail.  Met journalists and toured the Lewis and Clark Information Center at Chamberlain and traveled the Native American Scenic Byway.

Worked on itinerary for Marie Helene Fraisse Fam, France.  Three participants will be in South Dakota in May gathering information and doing interviews for a radio broadcast for Radio France and a magazine article.  They are interested in American Indian culture, history, education, and spiritual beliefs.  They will also visit Badlands National Park and the Black Hills.

Made fam arrangements and suggested contacts for Bleu Claire Fam, France, for their four-person film crew who will film scenery and French citizens living in South Dakota over three days in the Black Hills.

Sent events and activities ideas for groups and international expansion, adventure, etc. to the Sunday Times, United Kingdom.  E-mailed information on wedding destinations, legal requirements, etc. and coordinated with South Dakota suppliers for some of the information sent to Wedding Paradise magazine, Germany.  Was contacted by Jacob Van Splunter, The Netherlands, to relay that his article on the Mickelson Trail had been published.  (Requested a copy of the article.)  Had arranged an itinerary for him in 2003 that also included Lewis and Clark Trail sites.  Hosted Van Splunter at the 2002 Buffalo Roundup.

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Fulfilled requests for information from AAA/CAA offices and independent travel agencies in Canada, Colorado, Iowa, Indiana, Minnesota, North Dakota, Nebraska, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and South Dakota.

Sent permission e-mail messages to 250 AAA travel counselors from around the country.  Message contained information on Lewis and Clark Trail highlights, Minuteman Missile National Historic Site, and other events and attractions.

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Met with potential consultant to begin a list of locations that need to be included in the Birding Trail Guide.  Met with steering committee and worked on funding plans.  Finalized plan for completion of trail.

Made initial contact with the American Birding Association to bring a birding festival to central South Dakota, particularly focusing on the Gyrfalcons.

Finalized plans to host media on a turkey hunt in the Black Hills in May.

Hosted media and corporations to a large-scale turkey camp at Salt Camp on the Rosebud Reservation.  More than 20 representatives took part in the event.  Hosted Wild Dakota on a catfish fishing trip on Lake Oahe.  Show to air first week in May.

Will host Northland Adventures Television on a fishing trip to Lewis and Clark Lake in May.  Group will film out of the Springfield area.  Worked with regional newspapers to bring a press trip to the Glacial Lakes and Prairies region in June.  Began plans to host Gooseview Industries and media on a late-season pheasant and waterfowl hunt in the Great Lakes Region.

Provided information and/or interviews to Wal-Mart Outdoors; Fishing the Midwest; Sports Afield; Traveling Wingshooter; Tony Dean Outdoors; Great Plains Game and Fish; Backroads with Ron and Raven; Wild Dakota; and Pheasants Forever.

Press hits with circulation and estimated ad equivalence: Outdoor Life (1,021,595) for ad equivalence of $259,700 and South Dakota magazine (35,862) for ad equivalence of $250.  Total ad equivalence of $259,950.

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Mailed approximately 3,000 film office postcards to film industry decision makers.

Scouted the Pollock and Mobridge area for road locations for a car commercial.

Met with a location manager for HBO’s Deadwood series to discuss locations for filming the next season.

Created and placed ads for the Black Hills Microcinema Film Festival on, a leading independent film web site.  The festival is formerly known as the ReWind Film Festival.  It remains a festival for young and up- and-coming filmmakers scheduled for July in Rapid City.  Worked on a filmmakers’ fam trip for the festival.

Contacted by a representative of 777 Buffalo Ranch, Hermosa, regarding a mini-series that is looking at South Dakota for filming.  A commercial was recently filmed at the 777 Ranch.

Prepared for and attended the 2004 Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI) Locations Trade Show in Santa Monica.  The show is attended by most of the film offices from around the world.  It provides a chance for film offices to meet with industry decision makers and pitch their locations.  South Dakota Tourism won a second place award for a black and white ad that was created for industry magazines.

Contacted by a Santa Fe film contact regarding a power generator for filming and made a referral.  Contacted  by a Florida location scout regarding locations for a clothing commercial.  Sent photos and production information.  Contacted by a cable television show regarding the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  They are looking for additional events around the Rally as well as production assistance.

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Notified 84 travel counselors of their employment and sent regret letters to remaining applicants.

Finalized itinerary for the Information Center training tour, May 3 – 7.  Updated the Information Center training handbook.

Have poster space available at Salem EB and Wasta EB.

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For 2004, we have 32 individuals/businesses that have received recognition for hospitality with the Governor’s Certificate, two have received the foil star for a second recognition, and no one has received a gold lapel pin for a third recognition.

Coordinated the management training seminar that was held in Pierre at the Best Western Ramkota for 68 attendees.  Judy Randall was the speaker.

Organized the front-line training seminars to be held May 26 at Cedar Shore Resort in Oacoma, June 1 at the Rapid City Civic Center, June 3 at the Ramkota in Aberdeen, and June 4 at the Outdoor Campus in Sioux Falls.  The speaker will be Greg Holder from Leadership Solutions.  A registration flyer will be mailed to the visitor industry members in early May. 

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Total FY2004 Inquiries through 05-01-04

Mail:   88,087
Internet (e-mail):
Phone:    17,663
Total:  181,331

Total FY2003 Inquiries through 05-01-03:

Mail:  58,852
Internet (e-mail):  65,843
Phone:   19,305
Total:  144,000

This is an overall increase in inquiries of 25.9 percent over FY2003.  (This does not include hits/visits to Tourism’s Web site.)

Calculated number of page views at 1,059,196 on Tourism’s web site for the period of April 1-30, 2004, for a daily average of 35,306 over a 30-day period.  This compares to calculated page views of 725,392 for the period of April 1-30, 2003, for a daily average of 24,180 over a 30-day period.  This is an increase in daily average of page views of 46.0 percent over a comparable time period in 2003.  “Page views” represents the number of times each and every page within the web site is accessed.

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Received 25 entries from South Dakota fourth graders for the Lewis and Clark Essay Contest, which were judged in-house.  Will award prizes to the top five places.  Winners will be announced in May.

Drafted a letter to be sent to fourth grade teachers in South Dakota regarding the Lewis and Clark events, and encouraged teachers to incorporate the Lewis and Clark Trail Bicentennial into their lessons.

Gave updates on South Dakota’s Lewis and Clark Trail activities to a group of summer volunteers at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre.

Sent notification to those on the Corps of Rediscovery database regarding the next Lewis and Clark Corps of Rediscovery meeting to be held May 6 at Freeman.  Topics for the meeting include updates on the Discovery Expedition from St. Charles, Missouri; Corps II – the National Park Service Traveling Exhibit; and the Signature Event.  A representative from the National Guard will brief the group on what the Guard plans to do to help with the commemoration.

Met with members of the Discovery Expedition, a Lewis and Clark re-enactment group out of St. Charles, Missouri, to review their schedule while they travel through South Dakota.  The coordinators will be working directly with community contacts along the Lewis and Clark Trail.

Coordinated speakers and logistics for the “First Day of Issue Ceremony” for the Lewis and Clark Commemorative Stamp to be held on May 14 at the Capitol Building.  Sent invitations for the ceremony.  Speakers include Pierre Mayor Dennis Eisnach; Fort Pierre Mayor Sam Tidball; Jay Vogt, Director of the South Dakota State Historical Society; and postal service representatives.  The National Guard will provide the color guard; Mary Ellen Garrett will be singing the National Anthem; Webster Two Hawk will be giving the invocation; and the Capital City Children’s Chorus will be performing Lewis and Clark songs.

Participated in a Circle of State Advisors (COSA) conference call with representatives from Lewis and Clark Trail States, tribes along the trail, and the National Park Service.  Discussed logistics for Signature Events and received updates from Circle of Tribal Advisors and the National Park Service.

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Began updating the Guide to Indian Reservations and Art, which is produced in-house.  Sent letters to tribal chairpersons and tribal tourism officials asking them to review and make changes for their sections in the guide and send them back to Tourism.  The guide contains a services directory for each reservation, locations for viewing and/or buying Native American art, gaming/casinos listings, and emergency numbers.

Attended a Lewis and Clark Trail meeting along with representatives of the Corps of Engineers and the Alliance of Tribal Tourism Advocates.  Representatives from the Corps explained what they can do to assist with the planning of the Signature Event.

Gathered biographies of Native American artists who are participating in the Art Exhibit and Auction that is part of the kick-off of the Signature Event.  Began placing biographies on the Online Gallery with photos of their artwork, which Tourism had taken.

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Fulfilled requests for slides to State Publishing and Department of Game, Fish and Parks, Pierre; South Dakota magazine, Yankton; Lawrence and Schiller, The Outdoor Campus, and Ag Statistics, Sioux Falls; Rushmore Photo and Gifts, Rapid City; freelance designer Rob Henry, Sturgis; National Scenic Byways Online, Utah; and Compass Point Books, Minnesota.

Received digital photography equipment and attended a digital photography workshop.  Created digital photo database, including searchable forms available to graphic designers, writers, and web designers.

Fulfilled requests for video footage to Paulson Marketing, Sioux Falls and Today’s Ag, Brookings, of wildlife and prairie footage for an upcoming show. 

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Made final partner corrections to the Giant Step shoulder season co-op partner piece.  Distribution for the shoulder season issue is 1.85 million in Better Homes & Gardens, Midwest Living, More, Country Home, and Ladies’ Home Journal magazines.

Placed newspaper ads in Chicago, Des Moines, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Milwaukee, Omaha, Kansas City, Fargo, Sioux City, and Sioux Falls that feature four to five different vacation packages per week per market.  Running 30- second niche market television ads in the same markets plus Denver to promote online vacation packages.

South Dakota Road Trip co-op schedule in April included partner packages in Wildest Pair Vacation Package – Reptile Gardens, Bear Country USA, and Best Western Town & Country; Brookings Getaway – Brookings Inn, Agricultural Heritage Museum, and South Dakota Art Museum; Nostalgic Fun in Murdo – Pioneer Auto and Murdo Super 8; and Symphony and City Lights – Holiday Inn City Center and South Dakota Symphony.  The five minute travel show airs on KELO-TV after the 10 pm news on Sundays.  The packages will be rotated throughout the year.

E-mailed Travelsmart electronic newsletter to 104,000 consumer subscribers.  Message included vacation packages, fishing tips, events, and a challenge.  Responded to requests and questions.  Continued to add or delete addresses, per requests.

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Received packaging for the DVDs and VHS cassettes for the 2004 show.  Currently have 77 partners in the lodging industry with in-house cable systems and cities with cable channels.

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On have 116 packages and 36 coupons listed and submitted packages to; updated Visitor Services Directory showing 4,750 entries and will schedule iPIX for partners requesting this option; added a highlight and landing page for museums; created several new Lewis and Clark pages; and updated other pages as needed.

On added a page on the 2010 Initiative Radio Program and a link from the homepage; and updated pages as needed.  On added the fall 2004 Outdoor News.

Researched various South Dakota related keywords and phrases on Amazon’s new search engine,

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Compiled data for the 2004 first quarter consumer Web survey report.  Sent prize packages to winners from Nebraska and Missouri.  Survey results for the first quarter were compiled from 236 respondents and include:

68 percent had been to South Dakota before

86 percent said they are planning a trip to South Dakota in the upcoming year

82 percent said answered all of their travel questions

97 percent said they would recommend the site to another traveler

48 percent were referred to by a search engine

49 percent indicated it was their first time visiting

61 percent of the respondents are female; 36 percent are male; 2 percent declined to answer

72 percent are married

38 percent have children under 18 living at home

47 percent of the respondents are from the target states of

Minnesota (22 respondents), Wisconsin (22), Illinois (20), Nebraska (14), Texas (11), Iowa (10), Missouri (7), Colorado (3), and North Dakota (1).

Top out-of-target-market states include California (14), Florida (10), and Pennsylvania (6).

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Sent script and standards to South Dakota State University and contact asking for permission to use the logo on caps for the State A Track Meet.

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Scheduled several more acts for the USO tents, and worked on refreshments, decorations, and sound person and equipment for one of the USO tents.

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Black Hills Horse Expo, March 20-21, Rapid City: Worked on compiling report from evaluations.

Frontier Days, August 20-22, White River: Finalized marketing plan.  E-mailed event submission information to the local committee for Western Horseman and American Cowboy regarding free online event listings.

Lewis and Clark Signature Event, August 26 through September 27: Finalized copy for event brochure, and will print 10,000 copies of the tri-fold brochures.  Placed ads in We Proceeded On and Indian Country Today.

Black Hills Quilt Show and Sale, September 12-15, Hill City: Created postcards and placed ads in Quiltmaker and McCall’s Quilting.

Polka Festival, September 17-19, Mitchell: Will attend scheduled meeting in May.

Fiddlers’ Jamboree, September 17-19, Yankton: Met with committee and completed marketing plan after researching markets, publications, and radio.

Bad River Gathering, September 24-26, Fort Pierre: Finalized marketing plan.

Pumpkin Fest, October 8-9, Webster: Will attend meeting when it is scheduled.

Last Chance Bonanza Rodeo, November 4-6, Brookings: Will attend meeting when it is scheduled.

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Deadwood gaming revenue deposited for March 2004 was up 3.6 percent at $169,881, compared to $163,999 for March 2003.  The tourism tax deposited for March 2004 was up 23.5 percent at $184,076, as compared to $149,075 for March 2003.  The deposits in FY04 thus far for gaming and the tourism tax are $5,864,859, as compared to $5,479,652 for FY2003.  This is an overall increase in revenue of 7.0 percent when comparing the same time period in FY2003.

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