Revitalize through Regional Tourism

When done right, tourism can be a soft use of natural resources. Fortunately, Northeast Iowa is a traveler’s paradise and thus, our tourism industry is a multi-million dollar business. We believe our natural resources, small communities, historic sites, art, local businesses, and restaurants draw visitors and new residents to our region. This supports our local businesses and communities and diversify our economy. By facilitating partnerships and encouraging regional initiatives, we are able to move beyond the limited budgets available to county and community tourism and economic development directors. We are also able to help shape the tourism message so that it fosters protection of our natural resources. We secure funding for and help implement innovative projects, which include major community infrastructure projects, branding and marketing initiatives, natural resource publications, and innovative partnerships.

Northeast Iowa Tourism Association (NEITA) – We developed and facilitate a 7-county team of tourism and economic development directors, helping create, implement and evaluate regional marketing initiatives that influence the public’s perception of Northeast Iowa. This group is considered a model by state tourism leaders. The regional marketing tools we have helped NEITA develop have been extremely effective and won state awards.

Iowa Byway Sustainability Project – In partnership with four scenic byway boards (River Bluffs, Driftless Area, Delaware Crossing and Grant Wood), the Iowa DOT, and byway leaders across Iowa, we are working with dozens of communities and counties to develop four scenic byways, their communities, and attractions into exceptional tourism destinations, securing millions of dollars for infrastructure, interpretation, promotion and marketing.

Northeast Iowa Regional Trails System – We work with county conservation boards and private trails groups across the region to help them plan and fund local trails and maximize connections with others through the regional system. As we help develop trails, we strive to maximize the environmental and economic benefits for the communities and the region. Projects include the Trout Run Trail, Prairie Farmer Trail, Wapsi Great Western Line Trail, Mississippi River Trail, Turkey River Corridor Trail, Dry Run Trail, and the Freeport Trail.

Turkey River Recreational Corridor – We started by providing planning and grant writing assistance. We now provide coordination, marketing, grant writing, and other assistance to this partnership of 3 communities and 2 counties who are developing and marketing recreational opportunities along the Turkey River Corridor.

Iowa's eleven byways are home to some of the most scenic roadways in the region. Travel these routes and you'll discover unique land features, welcoming people, and a host of fascinating cultural and historical sites not found on the beaten path....