11
Jun

Calitri reports pandemic hits hard, predicts strong 2021!

https://www.tristatehomepage.com/news/coronavirus-watch/hotels-across-region-country-feeling-impact-of-pandemic/
OWENSBORO, Ky. (WEHT) – The pandemic has hit industries ranging from restaurants to manufacturing. The nation’s hotels are also taking a major hit. A national lodging group says the hotel industry is “on the brink of collapse”.
“You could probably go to a bunch of the hotels in the local areas and see the parking lot will speak louder than words,” said Nita Patel, the owner and operator of the Super 8 in Owensboro, just off of Frederica Street. After the pandemic started, so did reservation cancellations.
“For example, in April, we had $86,000 in reservations. As the pandemic was announced in March, literally, you could see calls coming and cancelling all those reservations and it trickled down to about 5 maybe 6% in the month of April,” she said.
“The virus has definitely been devastating to our tourism industry. It’s not just the hotels that have been negatively affected. We’ve had restaurants close,” adds Mark Calitri of Visit Owensboro.
The American Hotel and Lodging Association says 2020 is expected to be the worst year on record for hotel occupancy, and experts believe occupancy won’t return to pre-pandemic levels until 2022. An Oxford Economics study showed nearly 4 million hotel and hospitality workers were either furloughed or laid off, and the industry could lose of up to half of its revenue for 2020.
Calitri says occupancies city wide are down 50% and room rates are down 26%.
“So, you combine those two together, and that’s created the substantial never before seen drop,” he said.
In a letter to congressional leaders, the AHLA is asking congress to help hotels by extending paycheck protection programs, protect workers and guests through tax credits for PPE, and start a new travel tax credit to get Americans travel again when it’s safe. Patel hopes things improve in the fall and winter, but will control costs to keep the rooms open.
“You just do whatever it takes to keep yourselves open at this point,” she said.
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(This story was originally published on May 26, 2020)
Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Visit Owensboro is the official destination marketing organization for Owensboro and Daviess County Kentucky. www.visitowensboro.com Mark Calitri serves as President/CEO.

11
Jun

Calitri speaks tourism: ROMP canceled this year, 2021 loaded with big events

Calitri speaks tourism: ROMP canceled this year, 2021 loaded with big events
https://www.messenger-inquirer.com/news/romp-canceled-this-year/article_a12a0642-251e-5d3a-8e8a-cbf47d111735.html
In April, the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum postponed ROMP indefinitely because of the coronavirus pandemic.
At the time, there was hope of moving the June 24-27 event to the fall.
But the pandemic is still holding on.
And Chris Joslin, the Hall of Fame’s executive director, said the festival that draws more than 25,000 people from several countries to Yellow Creek Park each summer is canceled for this year.
It is now scheduled to return on June 23-26, 2021.
Mark Calitri, president of the Owensboro-Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau, said, “ROMP is important to our community’s identity, as Owensboro continues to carve out a reputation as the Bluegrass Music Capital of The World.”
He said, “Although the event is tremendously important, thank goodness the success of the Hall of Fame is not tied solely to ROMP.”
Joslin said earlier, “It is fortunate that the Hall of Fame is much more diversified today than we were just a few years ago. While virtually everything is at a standstill for us currently, we entered into this crisis much stronger than we would have a few years ago.”
“ROMP will return and will continue to have a significant economic impact for our community,” Calitri said.
Kentucky tourism’s TV commercials this spring have featured shots of the Hall of Fame.
Visit Owensboro is the official destination marketing organization for Owensboro and Daviess County Kentucky. www.visitowensboro.com Mark Calitri serves as President/CEO.

11
Jun

Owensboro launches new COVID-19 recovery task force

Tourism, specifically, has been hit hard by the pandemic, as the city saw hotel occupancies decrease by more than 60%.
“When I say tourism – we’re talking about hotels, restaurants, our bourbon distillery, our museums and arts organizations have all been greatly affected,” Mark Calitri, president and CEO of Visit Owensboro said.

https://www.14news.com/2020/06/10/owensboro-launches-new-covid-recovery-task-force/

 

11
Jun

Calitri speaks tourism: Chamber, EDC, Visit Owensboro create recovery task force

Chamber, EDC, CVB create recovery task force
The Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce, Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corp. and the Owensboro-Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau have created a 17-member GO Forward Economic Recovery Task Force to help with the community’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
Mark Calitri, CVB president, said, “Our tourism partners, including hotels, restaurants, museums and attractions, were the first and hardest hit by the pandemic. Now that our reopening process is in full swing, it is time to demonstrate that Greater Owensboro is open for business and that we will get through this time and become even stronger than we were before.”
The task force includes members of local government, the hospitality industry, the Owensboro Riverport Authority, Owensboro-Daviess County Regional Airport, agribusiness, health care, school systems, higher education, workforce development and nonprofits.
Candance Castlen Brake, chamber president, said, “The three of us have been working together for several weeks to collectively address issues. But we want to work with others to address any gaps.”
She said, “We had some major momentum in March, and we need to recapture that.”
Brake said she hasn’t heard from any chamber members who are thinking of closing their doors.
But many of them are struggling, she said.
Brake said, “There was a big sigh of relief when they were able to reopen. But they’ve had a deluge of new guidelines. One described it as like standing in the middle of a fire with a garden hose.”
She said the task force needs to look at child care, so parents can get back to work.

https://www.messenger-inquirer.com/news/chamber-edc-cvb-create-recovery-task-force/article_3cb92802-7a99-5cc8-8233-94cf0091f145.html
Visit Owensboro is the official destination marketing organization for Owensboro and Daviess County Kentucky. www.visitowensboro.com Mark Calitri serves as President/CEO.