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MPS Receives Visionary Impact Award from Maryland Tourism Council

Sandy Turner, Cecil County tourism director; Christina Holden, MPS marketing & tourism; Deb Carter, exec. director of Md. Assoc. of Campgrounds

The Maryland Park Service (MPS) received the Visionary Impact Award from the Maryland Tourism Council on November 16 at the 2012 Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit. This award recognized MPS for its dedication to providing visitors with quality outdoor experiences while benefitting local economies throughout Maryland.

“On behalf of those who work hard every day to ensure that our State Parks are the best that they can be, who make certain that citizens and visitors have a place where they can safely enjoy Maryland’s beautiful, natural gifts, and who share their enthusiasm and love of the great outdoors ─ I want to say thank you for this recognition,” said MPS Superintendent Nita Settina.

The first-ever Maryland State Park Economic Impact and Visitor Study, completed in 2010, showed that Maryland’s 66 State Parks hosted more than 10 million visitors, generating $650 million for local businesses and communities and supporting 10,000 private-sector jobs statewide.

In an excerpt from the nomination, the Maryland Tourism Council states:

“From the captivating Appalachian Mountains, to the shores of the Chesapeake Bay, from the marshland to the magnificent ocean, Maryland’s visitors are offered a wonderful outdoor experience by dedicated State Park staff. I’ve never experienced a more dedicated, hard working, passionate group of people. They put their hearts and souls into their parks (OUR parks), to give our visitors a memorable outdoor experience. This is not a ‘job’ to them. It’s truly who they are! The staff of the Maryland Park Service, day after day, month after month, and year after year, goes above and beyond in taking care of our Maryland visitors! In addition to the wonderful outdoor experience offered, our parks generate a significant economic impact on our state as well as small communities throughout Maryland.”

The 32nd annual Maryland Tourism and Travel Summit was held November 14-16 at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Resort & Spa. The event was established to provide networking opportunities for the tourism industry and honor both business and individual achievements that benefit the State’s economy, residents and visitors. Winners are chosen by a panel of past Maryland Tourism Council Persons of the Year. MPS was nominated by the Cecil County Office of Tourism.