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Great Lakes Seaway Trail anticipates strong 2012 byway tourism season

by jmaloni
Wed, Nov 2nd 2011 03:35 am

Announces new incentive program for area businesses

The Great Lakes Seaway Trail is a nationally recognized, authentic American road trip experience in New York and Pennsylvania. The not-for-profit Seaway Trail Inc. is reinforcing the message that the National Scenic Byway is good for the Western New York economy and local businesses with a new member incentive program.

The 518-mile Great Lakes Seaway Trail connects places such as Buffalo, Wilson, Lewiston and Niagara Falls with byway communities stretching along the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario, Niagara River and Lake Erie.

Seaway Trail Inc., with offices in Sackets Harbor and Webster, has already brought in more than $3.2 million in scenic byway grants for planning, interpretation, and marketing of byway communities in the 11-county region.

The latest Seaway Trail Inc. travel and tourism initiatives include a host of War of 1812 bicentennial plans, a trailwide geocaching adventure, and an organized leisure-walking program.

More than 245 quilters, groups and history buffs from three nations have registered to participate in the March 17-18, 2012, Great Lakes Seaway Trail War of 1812 Bicentennial Quilt Show (www.seawaytrail.com/quilting). The event is expanding to three locations in the 1812 heritage community of Sackets Harbor.

 The Great Lakes Seaway Trail GeoTrail (www.seawaytrail.com/geotrail) - a high-tech treasure hunt for those using hand-held GPS units - produced $150,000 in economic impact in its first year and is expected to add an additional $250,000 in direct economic activity in byway communities over the coming years.

The new Great Lakes Seaway Trail Volkssport Association is planning a series of 1812-themed walks starting in April 2012 (www.seawaytrail.com/volkssport).

Seaway Trail Inc.'s latest initiative to drive economic growth for local businesses is a new membership incentive campaign. Seaway Trail Inc. and more than two-dozen partners are announcing a full set of business-to-business discounts and incentives to encourage membership in the not-for-profit.

Partners in the new campaign include AAA, Hertz Car Rental and Office Depot.

Seaway Trail Inc. members will continue to benefit from inclusion in the annual Great Lakes Seaway Trail Travel Magazine with a distribution of 200,000 copies locally and outside the region. The 2011 issue is online at www.seawaytrail.com/travelmagazine.

"This new membership campaign invites local businesses to discover new ways to attract customers, save money on common business expenses, and join their interests with a non-profit organization making a positive impact on the local economy," says Great Lakes Seaway Trail Director of Business Relations Kurt Schumacher.

For more information, contact Schumacher at 585-857-1004 or email [email protected].

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