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Maryland Campaign milestone listed as top 100 tourism event

September 18, 2011

FREDERICK, Md. — The American Bus Association recently announced that the Civil War 150th commemoration of the Maryland Campaign, being held Sept. 8 to 22, 2012, has been designated as one of the top 100 events in North America for 2012 by a tourism industry selection committee.

Inclusion in the top 100 list, published as a supplement to the September/October issue of Destinations magazine, indicates that the 150th commemoration of the Maryland Campaign offers value to tour groups and individual travelers from around the world, according to the ABA.

“The 150th commemoration of the Maryland Campaign explores the impact of Gen. Robert E. Lee’s first advance of the Confederate army into the north, crossing the Potomac into Maryland,” said Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area Director Liz Shatto. “We will commemorate the Battles of South Mountain and Antietam, and the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation that was issued a few days after the bloodiest single day in American history. This is a combined effort of several national parks, South Mountain State Battlefield, the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area, the National Museum of Civil War Medicine, local historical groups, tourism bureaus, and municipalities in Washington, Frederick and Carroll counties.”

Throughout the week, commemorative church services, lectures, a Civil War ball, a concert and other events will take place between South Mountain and Antietam. Other nearby attractions featured by the ABA in conjunction with the 150th commemoration of the Maryland Campaign include the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, National Museum of Civil War Medicine in Frederick, and Union Mills Homestead in Carroll County. The website www.marylandcampaign150.org is continuously being updated with events and attractions for the 2012 commemoration, and will include other events related to the Maryland Campaign.

With the release of the American Bus Association’s 2012 Top 100 Events in North America, ABA celebrates 30 years of the program. What began as a way for motorcoach operators to incorporate new products into their itineraries has grown to one of the most sought-after lists by travel professionals, motorcoach operators and the general public.

“The real news here is that the 150th commemoration of the Maryland Campaign has been recognized as a potential magnet for tourism dollars, at a time when re-energizing domestic tourism is so important to our spirit and our economy,” said Peter J. Pantuso, ABA’s president and chief executive officer. “The honor gives Frederick, Washington and Carroll counties an important boost in visibility among professional tour planners.”

According to studies completed by researchers at The George Washington University and Dunham and Associates, one overnight visit by a motorcoach group can leave $5,000 to more than $11,000 in a local destination’s economy. Those dollars are spent on lodging, meals, admissions, fees, shopping, souvenirs, services and local taxes.

The top 100 events list is available online at www.buses.org/News-Publications/Top-100.

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