State Bicycling Promotion Gets National Honor

Aug 21, 2013

Contact: Joan Hummel
651-757-1850
joan.hummel@state.mn.us

"Pedal Minnesota" Wins Mercury Award

St Paul, MN (August 21, 2013) – A collaborative marketing program to promote bicycling, spearheaded by Explore Minnesota Tourism, has just received an award from the National Council of State Tourism Directors (NCSTD). The 2013 Mercury award for niche marketing was presented to Explore Minnesota Tourism last evening during the U.S. Travel Association's annual Educational Seminar for Tourism Organizations (ESTO) conference.

The Pedal Minnesota campaign, now in its second year, encourages more people to get on bikes more often in Minnesota. Initiated by Explore Minnesota Tourism, the state's tourism promotion office, the partnership includes the Minnesota departments of Health, Transportation and Natural Resources, the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota, the Parks and Trails Council of Minnesota, the National Park Service, and sponsorship by HealthPartners.

"The award presentation noted the collaborative nature of this unique partnership among state agencies, working together with bicycling organizations and a corporate sponsor," said John Edman, director of Explore Minnesota Tourism. "Bicycling is not only important to state tourism, but it's part of a healthy lifestyle and is an alternate transportation mode. The Pedal Minnesota initiative puts a spotlight on our state's great biking trails and routes."

Central to the campaign is the website PedalMN.com, a rich resource for information on bicycling, including mapping tools, lists of biking events, personal tips and trip ideas from bicyclists across the state. The campaign has included advertising, traveling bike tune-up stations, a biking tourism brochure, state bicycling map, bicycle safety information, and a conference for communities on all aspects of bicycling.

The Mercury awards are given to state tourism offices by NCSTD, recognizing members for excellence and creative accomplishment at the state level in tourism marketing and promotion.

About Explore Minnesota Tourism
As the state's tourism office, Explore Minnesota Tourism pursues an entrepreneurial approach, leveraging the state's tourism investment with increased involvement by the private sector. Tourism is an $11.9 billion industry in Minnesota, a key sector of the state's economy. The leisure and hospitality industry, a major provider of tourism services, employs almost 240,000, representing 11 percent of private sector employment. Leisure and hospitality also generates 17 percent of state sales tax revenues.