Recently a three day museum conference brought attendees from throughout Georgia to Statesboro. This was a much needed and welcome return of tourism to Statesboro. If you live in Statesboro, you may not think about our city as a tourism destination. However, tourism has a major economic impact on our local economy.
“Hotel revenue was down nearly 63% in April 2020 we’re starting to see the numbers slowly recover. Meetings and conferences are beginning to book again statewide and in Statesboro,” said Becky Davis, Executive Director, Visit Statesboro.
“The Georgia Association of Museums Conference was the beginning of what we hope to be a very busy summer in Statesboro for conferences, meetings and sporting events which bring more travelers to our community overnight. We are also seeing more visitors stopping into our welcome center now which is a positive sign that people are ready to travel.”
GAM Museum Conference A Success
The last week of April the Georgia Association of Museums (GAM) held their annual conference in Statesboro. This was the first conference Visit Statesboro has assisted with in fourteen months.
The small hybrid conference had around 100 attendees of which 40 attended in person, the remainder joined virtually acorcing to Dr. Brent Tharpe, Director of the Georgia Southern Museum and member of GAM.
This was a great size conference to experiment with the new normal of hosting events safely and successfully.
The GAM Conference was held on the Georgia Southern University campus in the Russell Union. In addition to touring the beautiful campus of Georgia Southern, attendees also received a taste of our city with meals and entertainment. They began the conference with an opening reception at Eagle Creek Brewery the first evening. The second night they attended a progressive dinner the second evening that began with appetizers at Visit Statesboro which houses “Navigating South Georgia: Small Boats and Changing Cultures” museum exhibit.
They then toured Georgia Southern’ s Center for Wildlife Education where they had dinner and traveled the the newly remodeled Georgia Southern Museum for dessert.
The final evening they enjoyed dinner at the Georgia Southern Botanic Gardens. The conference was a success as attendees were impressed with the diversity of museums and attractions available in our community. These are all benefits to attracting conferences, sporting events, meeting and tourist to our community.
In addition to being a great getaway for the conference attendees their speakers covered a variety of topics, including adapting and moving forward in the pandemic world.