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NEWS
September 11, 1997
By JULIE E. GREENE Staff Writer The head of Washington County's tourism bureau resigned Thursday, leaving an opportunity to improve the image of the beleaguered office, officials said. Ron Stansbury said his successor should not be a member of the transition board, an embattled group he led for five months that restructured the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau budget to focus on marketing and promotion rather than salaries. During a Thursday morning tourism board meeting, Vice President Jim Kell agreed with Stansbury, saying he didn't want the top post.
NEWS
April 3, 2007
The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau has just released the spring and summer edition of its Calendar of Events. The fold-out brochure lists area events from April 2007 through September 2007. Nearly 50,000 copies of the Calendar of Events are being distributed by the CVB. There are more than 150 Washington County separate events in the latest Calendar of Events. It includes the Hagerstown Suns' home game schedule, exhibits at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, the Pen Mar Park concert schedule, Fort Frederick events, and performances at area theatres, including The Maryland Theatre and at the Washington County Playhouse.
NEWS
July 1, 1998
The Washington County tourism bureau's $75,000 line of credit from the City of Hagerstown expired Tuesday with no outstanding debt, officials said. The most the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau used was $20,000 that was outstanding in August 1997, said City Finance Director Al Martin. That money was paid off at 5.75 percent interest by the end of 1997 and no further money was withdrawn, Martin said. The funds were used for payroll and operating costs during the first few months after the bureau was restructured and given a fresh start on July 1, 1997, said Ben Hart, the bureau's executive director.
NEWS
July 23, 1997
The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau will get a $75,000 line of credit from the city so employees and bills can be paid. Council members unanimously approved the line of credit on Tuesday night. The credit was needed because the next check from the hotel-motel tax, which helps fund the tourism bureau, wasn't expected until late this month, officials have said. The tourism bureau was broke in early July when board officials asked the council for the credit.
NEWS
July 1, 1997
By JULIE E. GREENE Staff Writer Washington County's tourism information center in Breezewood, Pa., closed Monday and employees there were laid off, officials said. Five Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau employees, including the three part-time employees at the information center, accepted a layoff offer from the county, according to Ron Stansbury, tourism bureau board president. The information center, which opened in 1986, will remain closed unless the Washington County Commissioners hire people to work there, Stansbury said.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | December 5, 1998
Prime Outlets was among the recipients for the first annual Washington County Travel Awards this week. The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau recognized Prime Outlets as its 1998 Member of the Year during an awards luncheon on Thursday at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel. Prime Outlets has 76 stores open so far with a third phase of more than 20 stores expected to open next summer, outlet officials said. "I was thrilled. On behalf of the center we were very, very excited," said Alice Rosen, assistant general manager and marketing director for the outlets.
NEWS
January 24, 2002
Commissioners to lobby bureau for festival funding KEEDYSVILLE - Washington County Commissioners Bert Iseminger and John Schnebly said Tuesday night they would lobby the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau to continue funding the Sharpsburg Heritage Festival. CVB Executive Director Ben Hart said earlier this year the tourism bureau would no longer provide the September event with funding since it could apply for hotel tax revenue. Iseminger said it was "premature" for the tourism bureau to take that money away from the festival.
NEWS
July 8, 1997
Hagerstown City Council members said Tuesday they would extend the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau a $75,000 line of credit. The credit is needed to pay expenses, including payroll and rent for the downtown office, that have been accumulating since July 1, said Ron Stansbury, president of the tourism board. "But, right now we're broke," Stansbury said. The tourism board isn't expecting its next check from the hotel-motel room tax, which helps fund the tourism bureau, until late July, he said.
NEWS
April 18, 1997
By JULIE E. GREENE Staff Writer Twelve local tourism office employees, including Executive Director Leroy R. Burtner, will lose their jobs by July 1 under a restructuring that will shift the agency's funding priorities from salaries to marketing efforts, officials said Thursday. When the reorganization has been completed, the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau will have cut by nearly one-third the money it spends on salaries. Critics of the tourism bureau say it has budgeted too much for salaries and not enough for marketing efforts aimed at attracting tourists.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | October 1, 1998
An American Legion organization expects up to 3,000 members to attend its annual convention in Hagerstown in 2001, making it the largest convention to be held in Washington County, officials said Wednesday. "Everybody's excited about coming here," said George Cherepes, Forty and Eight's state secretary for Maryland. In the past, the convention has generated as much as $3 million to $4 million for host communities, he said in a telephone interview from his home in Beltsville, Md. --cont.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
April 11, 2007
The Hagerstown-Washington County 2007-2008 Visitor Guide is hot off the press! The first printing of several thousand copies has arrived and is being made available to visitors, CVB members, AAA offices, Visitor Welcome centers, travel bureaus, tour organizations and convention groups, malls, and other tourism offices. "The annual Visitor Guide is the most sought-after resource about Washington County," said Convention and Visitors Bureau President Tom Riford. "Residents and visitors alike love the CVB's guide to Hagerstown and Washington County, and this year's Visitor Guide is the best yet!"
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NEWS
April 3, 2007
The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau has just released the spring and summer edition of its Calendar of Events. The fold-out brochure lists area events from April 2007 through September 2007. Nearly 50,000 copies of the Calendar of Events are being distributed by the CVB. There are more than 150 Washington County separate events in the latest Calendar of Events. It includes the Hagerstown Suns' home game schedule, exhibits at the Washington County Museum of Fine Arts, the Pen Mar Park concert schedule, Fort Frederick events, and performances at area theatres, including The Maryland Theatre and at the Washington County Playhouse.
NEWS
by MATTHEW UMSTEAD | March 11, 2007
MARTINSBURG, W.VA. - The oldest continually operating train station in the United States opposite the historic B&O Roundhouse affords a tremendous amount of ambiance and charm for Andrea Ball, director of the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Convention & Visitors Bureau. What the restored station off East Martin Street doesn't offer, however, is high visibility and easy access for tourists traveling through the community, particularly Interstate 81 travelers, Ball said in an interview last week.
NEWS
by PEPPER BALLARD | March 25, 2004
pepperb@herald-mail.com Former Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau Executive Director Ben Hart was sentenced Wednesday to serve six months in jail after he admitted stealing more than $15,000 from the tourism bureau to feed a gambling addiction. Hart, 54, pleaded guilty Wednesday to stealing $15,526.49 from the convention and visitors bureau between Dec. 30, 2002 and Oct. 13, 2003. Washington County Circuit Judge John H. McDowell sentenced Hart to serve five years in state prison, but suspended all but six months of that sentence, which he ordered to be served at the Washington County Detention Center.
NEWS
January 24, 2002
Commissioners to lobby bureau for festival funding KEEDYSVILLE - Washington County Commissioners Bert Iseminger and John Schnebly said Tuesday night they would lobby the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau to continue funding the Sharpsburg Heritage Festival. CVB Executive Director Ben Hart said earlier this year the tourism bureau would no longer provide the September event with funding since it could apply for hotel tax revenue. Iseminger said it was "premature" for the tourism bureau to take that money away from the festival.
NEWS
By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | November 30, 1999
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. ? The oldest continually operating train station in the United States opposite the historic B&O Roundhouse affords a tremendous amount of ambiance and charm for Andrea Ball, director of the Martinsburg-Berkeley County Convention & Visitors Bureau. What the restored station off East Martin Street doesn't offer, however, is high visibility and easy access for tourists traveling through the community, particularly Interstate 81 travelers, Ball said in an interview last week.
NEWS
By BRUCE HAMILTON | September 13, 1999
Robert O'Connor is back and boosting sports at Hagerstown Community College. The former tourism director recently moved back to Hagerstown from Hershey, Pa. He is now HCC's Hawk Booster Coordinator, helping raise money and gather support for the college's 16 athletic teams. The boosters raise about $180,000 annually, all of which is used for athletic scholarships at the college, according to O'Connor. "We get a tremendous amount of support from the community every year," he said.
NEWS
By SCOTT BUTKI | March 14, 1999
Hagerstown was the fourth most popular destination in Maryland in 1997, up from eighth in 1996, according to the Maryland Office of Tourism Development. Only Baltimore, Ocean City and Annapolis attracted more tourists, the office said. That finding confirms a recent state study that showed an increase in tourism activity in Washington County. And local business and government leaders say the number of visitors has grown even larger since the report was compiled. "The Economic Impact of Travel on Maryland Counties 1997," a study prepared for the Maryland Office of Tourism Department by the U.S. Industry Association of America, attempts to determine how many tourists come to each county.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | December 5, 1998
Prime Outlets was among the recipients for the first annual Washington County Travel Awards this week. The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau recognized Prime Outlets as its 1998 Member of the Year during an awards luncheon on Thursday at the Four Points Sheraton Hotel. Prime Outlets has 76 stores open so far with a third phase of more than 20 stores expected to open next summer, outlet officials said. "I was thrilled. On behalf of the center we were very, very excited," said Alice Rosen, assistant general manager and marketing director for the outlets.
NEWS
By JULIE E. GREENE | October 1, 1998
An American Legion organization expects up to 3,000 members to attend its annual convention in Hagerstown in 2001, making it the largest convention to be held in Washington County, officials said Wednesday. "Everybody's excited about coming here," said George Cherepes, Forty and Eight's state secretary for Maryland. In the past, the convention has generated as much as $3 million to $4 million for host communities, he said in a telephone interview from his home in Beltsville, Md. --cont.
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