Friday, May 2, 2014

Official WI Tourism Site Ignores Milwaukee - - Which Is #1 In Tourism Spending

[Updated, 10:45] Here's something that people in Milwaukee fully understand and the rest of the state ignores or undervalues: Milwaukee County leads the state in tourism spending, the Journal Sentinel reports.

But the Walker administration, politically hostile to Milwaukee and all things urban, posts and features many non-City of Milwaukee, non-urban images, destinations and specific businesses on the state's official tourism web page - - except for a photo of a Milwaukee-area Interstate Highway and directional sign, I kid you not (click on it and it takes you to a WisDOT travel safe/road conditions' website) - - with this main text block:

Welcome to Wisconsin! 
Throughout the year, the state of Wisconsin welcomes visitors from far and wide with countless exciting travel options. Visit extraordinary natural wonders such as Cave of the Mounds or the Apostle Islands. See the landscape in a whole new way with a thrilling zip line adventure. If you’re all about the great outdoors, Wisconsin is a paradise for hunters, fishermen, and campers. Foodies, wine, and beer lovers will delight in discovering Wisconsin’s artisan cheese makers, wineries, and breweries; as well as farmers markets and award-winning restaurants. Great places like Wisconsin Dells, Door County, and Lake Geneva offer tons of options for family fun as well as resorts for romantic getaways. Golfing, boating, skiing, shopping, and sightseeing are just some of the activities you’ll find during a trip to Wisconsin. Whatever it is you like to do; Travel Wisconsin has something special in store for you!
Where are the feature pictures of the Lakefront, Summerfest, The Calatrava addition to the Milwaukee Art Museum, The Milwaukee County Zoo, Miller Park, Water Street and the club scene, the City's many ethnic restaurants, Milwaukee County's world-famous parks and botanical gardens, The Urban Ecology Center, The Performing Arts Center, The Pabst Theater, a downtown filled with historic architecture, including its iconic City Hall, etc.

I don't see a single City of Milwaukee upcoming event listed in "Things To Do," nor a single restaurant, sub and sandwich shop, Bed & Breakfast, pub, tavern, fast food joint, hotel or motel - - not even a coffee shop - -  on the site's featured lists.

What? Milwaukee residents and businesses don't pay taxes to the state which puts up this website and sends commerce elsewhere?

Why does the state sell a single recreational culture to potential visitors? Cabins and kayaking and waterfalls and off-road vehicles - - not that there's anything wrong with that - - but what about the rest of the state?  

And, really: Hiking Wisconsin trails is promoted with a photo that takes you to "Walk with Walker" - - which is a list of walks with Tonette Walker, pictured? In an election year?

A tab takes you to South Central Wisconsin, where The Dells gets the lede and as much text as Madison.

The Southeast Wisconsin tab give Milwaukee four lines (and, wow, finally a photo of the Calatrava is thrown up, but Lake Geneva and its fancy homes belonging to Chicago owners is in the same paragraph.

Why isn't the Milwaukee business community raising holy hell over this? They put Walker in office; where's the reciprocity?

I don't see a feature or obvious photo with a person of color.

Why does this administration's anti-urban bias - - remember when Walker, seeking gubernatorial votes against Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, warned against Barrett turning Wisconsin into "another Milwaukee" - - have to infect so much of what it does in our names?


MadCityVoter said...

Because we don't want those undesirable train-riders coming to our state and spreading around their filthy mass transit-loving dollars?

nonheroicvet said...

Even after all the republican counties surrounding Milwaukee provided the rest of us that sparkling new baseball park

JB said...

Oh, come on James, the PDF Spring/Summer event guide (just click on it!) lists the following Milwaukee events from April to September: Gallery Night and Day (April), the Bead and Button Show and PrideFest (June), Lakefront Festival of the Arts (June), Summerfest (June AND July, two listings!), For July: Downtown Milwaukee Fireworks, Bastille Days, Festa Italiana, another Gallery Night and Day, Brady Street Festival, and German BrewFest. For August: African World Festival, Irish Fest, Milwaukee a la Carte, Mexican Fiesta, and Milwaukee Rally (also September). In September: Indian Summer Festival, Mexican Independence Day Festival, and Milwaukee River Challenge. Jazz in the Park is listed as an ongoing event.

Each item got a paragraph in the 30+-page booklet. What more does Milwaukee need, really?

There did seem to be more items listed for Green Bay, though, and Door County? Whew!

Jake formerly of the LP said...

And Dane County is a clear second, with 7.5% growth year-over-year. Seems like both those places would be best suited to be able to lay down an extra sales tax on those tourists, and not have to wait on the largesse of the legislators in Madison to give them shared revenue.

So if the 262 Republicans want to stop complaining about how "all our taxes get sent to Milwaukee" (BS by the way, they leech more than they give), this is an easy solution. Give the state's #1 and #2 tourist destination the tools to recoup some of the costs that they have to take on from having all of this tourism. You did it for Dells-Delton and Bayfield.