Mason City Iowa – The Visit Mason City Board of Directors announced recently they will be relocating the Mason City Visitor Information Center, along with staff offices to a new location. Visit Mason City (VMC) will be moving to a leased space located at 2021 Fourth Street Southwest in Mason City on Jan. 1, 2012.
“The move will enable us to better attract, retain and serve the visitors resulting in increased visitor spending,” said Glenys Schloemer, President of the VMC board. “This is an ideal location with great visibility, accessibility and within a few miles from the main entrances used by travelers visiting the community. This location will help VMC “get in front of the visitor” providing information regarding all options to experience while in the area.” Schloemer also noted the location decision was based upon research and a thorough cost and benefit analysis.
The Visitor Information Center will serve as a one-stop information, hospitality and ticketing center for the numerous visitors that come to the area. “Each year, visitors are estimated to create over $81 million in direct visitor spending in Mason City. They generate an estimated $1.39 million in local tax revenues and support over 700 full-time jobs in Mason City,” said Sue Armour, Director of VMC. “At its current location, the Visitor Information Center typically assists around 700 travel parties each year. Now that we’re closer to the entrance to the community, which is the most densely-traveled section of the city by destination and impulse visitors, we expect to see several thousands of visitors coming through our doors.”
With this transition, VMC sees a great opportunity to grow the Visitor Information Center in its new location. The new Visitor Information Center will have the following benefits:
• Increased visibility with easy accessibility.
• Within two miles from the main visitor entrances into the community which research states is the ideal location to target the destination and impulse traveler.
• Superb signage at the facility and directing visitors to the facility.
• Visitor information in a stimulating environment including enhanced technology with videos.
• Increased area for brochure and travel information.
• One stop shop for ticketing and reservations.
• Expanded gift shop and souvenir selection.
• Dedicated parking providing visitors’ time to explore travel information, talk with information specialists, pick up a souvenir and more.
• Public restroom facilities.
• Business center with access to wireless internet, printer, etc.
• A positive and memorable first impression of the community and area.
Minor improvements will begin within the next week at the location. The Visitor Information Center grand opening is slated to be held in early spring 2012.
Visit Mason City, formerly the Mason City Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB), is a non-profit organization dedicated to marketing and promoting the area as a multi-day tourism destination to attract, retain and expand tourism generating visitor spending in the community. Tourism related expenditures contributed an estimated $81.57 million into Mason City’s economy during 2010. In Cerro Gordo County, tourism generated an estimated $163.15 million in visitor spending, the 10th highest county level in the State. Tourism related jobs employee nearly an estimated 1,500 people in Cerro Gordo County.