Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock joined VISIT DENVER, The Convention & Visitors Bureau, and other tourism business leaders from across the Front Range at a press conference at the Garner Galleria Theatre in the Denver Performing Arts Complex to kick off the tenth annual Mile High Holidays campaign.
The marketing promotion, valued at more than $1 million of paid and in-kind advertising, is designed to market Denver as the ultimate holiday vacation destination for the period of late November through New Year’s Eve fireworks and through National Western Stock Show & Rodeo in January.
In 2013, the holiday promotion was expanded to include the towns most impacted by the severe floods earlier this year, including: Boulder; Estes Park; Fort Collins; Greeley; Longmont; Loveland; and Manitou Springs.
Sponsored by VISIT DENVER, the City of Denver and more than two dozen other partners, the integrated marketing campaign will reach 10 markets throughout the Rocky Mountain region and the West through radio and television commercials, direct mail, regional newspaper and magazine ads, outdoor billboards, RTD ads, newspaper inserts, digital ads, a dedicated website, public relations and social media promotions. A total of $500,000 is being invested in the campaign, which through media partnerships and in-kind services will generate an advertising value of more than $1 million.
Denver Mayor Michael B. Hancock stated, “The holidays are a magical time of year, but they are also a crucial make-it or break-it period for many businesses in Denver and along the Front Range. The devastating floods in September caused 10,000 people to be evacuated and did more than $2 billion in damage. Coloradans are tough. We’ve picked up, dried out and rebuilt. The Front Range is open again and ready for holiday tourism business, so we thought we would expand Mile High Holidays this year, and encourage people to visit Denver and all our neighbors up and down the Front Range,” Hancock said.
Mayor Hancock encouraged families in the Rocky Mountain region to come and see the Parade of Lights, attend The Santaland Diaries and other productions at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, ride horse-drawn carriages under a canopy of lights down the 16th Street Mall or Larimer Square, and view lighting spectacles such as Zoo Lights or the Botanic Gardens’ Blossoms of Lights.
The Mayor also encouraged visitors and residents to “shop local,” and support both Cherry Creek Shopping Center and Cherry Creek North as well as downtown shops while also patronizing local artists and craftsmen in neighborhoods such as the Art District on Santa Fe, Tennyson Street Cultural District, Antique Row, RiNo, Golden Triangle Museum District, Old South Gaylord and South Pearl, among others.
“There are more than 200 holiday events, from Manitou Springs to Fort Collins and Greeley,” Mayor Hancock said. “This holiday season, I want to encourage families to start new traditions and by getting out and enjoying live music, theatre, and spectacular lighting displays all over the Front Range.”
Richard Scharf, president & CEO of VISIT DENVER, said, “40 Denver hotels are participating in the promotion by offering packages, including 17 hotels that have rooms for the ‘mile high’ price of $52.80.” Scharf encouraged locals and visitors to access MileHighHolidays.com, where holiday events are listed, as well as many restaurant, hotel and shopping specials.
Scharf said that when the flooding occurred in Colorado in September, many people wondered how they could help those people that were impacted. “The best way to help after a natural disaster is to visit those areas when they reopen, and that time is right now,” Scharf said. “Tourism is the second largest industry in Colorado and there’s not an area of the state that doesn’t benefit from tourism visits. But after a natural disaster, there is often a large drop in tourism numbers to impacted areas. So this holiday season, we encourage all Coloradoans and all people in the Rocky Mountain West to come and enjoy the hundreds of events taking place up and down the Front Range,” Scharf said.
In its tenth year, Mile High Holidays is a collaborative marketing program to increase the overall number of visitors to Denver and the surrounding area in the traditionally slow period of November through January. Participating entities include: VISIT DENVER; the City & County of Denver; the Downtown Denver Partnership; Comcast; CBS Outdoor; CBS 4; King Soopers; Yellow Cab; The Denver Center for the Performing Arts; and the National Western Stock Show.
The joint campaign will allow the partners to reach more people than any partner could reach on their own with information about Denver’s holiday activities and the terrific seasonal bargains offered by Denver and Front Range businesses.