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Tourism Groups Should Merge, Says Batistatos

Last updated on Wednesday, April 30, 2008

(MERRILLVILLE) - The president and chief executive officer of the Lake County Convention and Visitors Bureau says merging tourism groups in Northwest Indiana would benefit the region.

Speros Batistatos says tourism customers regard Lake, Porter and LaPorte Counties as the area between Chicago and Michigan. He says customers don't care about the location of Indiana counties.

Batistatos says the hospitality industry has spent 25 years selling tourism in the state by county name. But he says that is not how tourism is consumed in the U.S.

Batistatos says the redundancy and overhead of running 61 convention bureaus can be eliminated and the money pumped into marketing to make the state more competitive. He says most convention and visitors bureaus around the state are not pleased with the concept.

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