Industry Update

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To help make sure that all travelers interested in coming to the Harley-Davidson 110th Anniversary celebration August 29 – September 3, 2013 are able, travelers now have a new and free resource to find lodging up to two hours away. The Wisconsin Hotel & Lodging Association is hosting a page at where travelers can browse available lodging by distance from the festivities, in 15-minute driving time increments and book directly online or call for reservations. With reservations and cancellations changing availability each week, all participating properties will verify their availability weekly. Each Thursday through August 29, the page will be updated to reflect the latest status.

“There are still lodging options available for those who want to come to Wisconsin and celebrate the Harley-Davidson tradition in Milwaukee,” said Trisha Pugal, WH&LA President/CEO. “We hope to connect those travelers with rooms that best fit their needs, whether they stay 15 minutes away or even 2 hours away. What better way to experience more of what the Milwaukee area and other nearby areas have to offer than touring by motorcycle?”

The WH&LA is offering this free service in collaboration with The Wisconsin Department of Tourism, Visit Milwaukee and Harley-Davidson to conveniently find and book accommodations for this historic celebration.


Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has appointed Scott Krause, General Manager of the Heidel House Resort & Spa, Green Lake, to the Governor’s Council on Tourism. Krause currently serves on the WH&LA Board of Directors as the AH&LA Director. Also named to the council was Allyson Gommer, Chippewa Falls Area Chamber of Commerce.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Allyson and Scott aboard the Council,” said Tourism Secretary Stephanie Klett. “Their years of experience and diverse backgrounds in the tourism industry will help guide the Council’s work in seeking innovative ways to market Wisconsin and grow the tourism economy.”

The Governor’s Council on Tourism is made up of 20 individuals appointed by the Governor, hailing from all corners of the state and from a variety of occupations within the state’s tourism industry. Tourism Council members provide strategic insight and advisement to the Department of Tourism to further its mission to grow the tourism economy in the state


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Thanks to the generous donations of our members, we are pleased to announce that the WH&LA “Enjoy Wisconsin” spring online auction is now open for bidding through March 24!

View all of the great auction items available and place your bids now!

We appreciate everyone helping to make our online auction a success by donating items, bidding on items, and spreading the news about the auction to co-workers, friends & relatives!



Would you be impacted by an increase in state tourism marketing, and/or in improved allocations of local room tax revenues? Would you want to make sure legislators were more aware of the impact of some of their proposals on your bottom line? Are you aware of how much more receptive legislators are to hearing directly from businesses in their district regarding the impact of the budget or proposed legislation, than hearing it from us? This is the time to join together with your peers, learn the latest on what is on the slate at the capitol, and join others in meeting with legislators! Sign up now for WH&LA’s Action Day on April 11th at the Madison Concourse Hotel. Have an opportunity to meet with your own state legislators or their key staff at the Capitol! Whether you’ve never met your legislators, never been to the Capitol, are not up on the issues or what to say about them … join us, learn and enjoy this great new experience! For more information, see the registration form or register online.


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Meeting planners will save time planning meetings and special events in Wisconsin with the new, free online Event Site Quotes tool at This tool allows casual and professional meeting planners the opportunity to enter in all their event site requirements, and automatically distribute their quote request to lodging properties and convention centers around the state, or just in a select area.

Properties able to accommodate the meeting or event details will reply directly to the planner with a competitive quote for the meeting or event.

The easy-to-use Event Site Quotes tool will allow planners to specify:

  • Function space needs
  • Food & beverage needs
  • Sleeping rooms needs
  • Audio/visual needs

By using Event Site Quotes, meeting & event planners will:

  • Outline meeting or event space needs and deadlines just once
  • Save time checking availability of function space AND sleeping rooms at multiple venues
  • Reach more potential sites in Wisconsin than any other resource
  • Select one or many areas in the state

Save time planning your next event – visit Event Site Quotes to get started today!


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Do you look forward to reading your reviews, or does the very idea that someone has felt compelled to post a review fill you with dread? Getting feedback from your customers is essential to gauge whether what you’re offering is right for your target audience. Whether it’s positive or negative and whether you agree with it or not, customer reviews are a key to the success of any business.

So how do you address this? Unless we get people’s feedback, we can’t do anything about it.

What questions to ask …
Find out what your customers like, so you can keep doing it. Also, find out what things disappoint, irritate or annoy them, so you can correct them. What are the things that make them choose to come to you rather than your competitors? Use this as a selling point to differentiate yourself. What is your guest’s biggest priority, and what do they value the most? Find this out and then promote them. Ask how they think you could improve, and then make those improvements. What factors would encourage them to come to you again?

Read the entire article from here.


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Twice each year the WH&LA publishes qualified special requests for donations from our lodging members. This request is from former WH&LA Board Member Bob Dhir, Dhir Hotel Group, Milwaukee,  relating to the recent horrible tragedy in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. For a brief summary of this request, click here.


Who do you think are the best – the “stars” – in Wisconsin’s lodging industry? It only takes a minute to send in who you think should be considered for WH&LA’s
- Innkeeper of the Year
- Associate of the Year
- Spirit of Hospitality award

WH&LA recognizes the complete commitment to lodging excellence with the “Innkeeper of the Year” award, open to all WH&LA member properties, regardless of size. One individual, one couple or one set of family members from the same
property will be selected from all completed entries to receive WH&LA’s highest honor.

WH&LA honors a high degree of industry dedication and knowledge with the “Associate of the Year” award, open to all current WH&LA associate members.

The “Spirit of Hospitality” award honors lodging employees who are exemplary role models of the true spirit of hospitality in Wisconsin. Limit one entry per property; owners, operators and general managers are not eligible for this award.

For complete nomination rules and to enter your nominations for the awards, visit
All nominations are due by August 3, 2012.


The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has released the Foodborne Outbreak Online Database (FOOD), to make food outbreak surveillance data more easily available.

The FOOD tool allows users to search and download data on foodborne disease outbreaks reported to the CDC from 1998 through 2010. The database is updated periodically as new data are available. Search fields include year, state, location of consumption and etiology.

Access the FOOD tool here. Learn more about the tool here.


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Employers looking to hire students from the University of Wisconsin-Stout can sign up now to schedule on-campus interviews this fall.

Reserve an interviewing room here and follow the instructions below:
1. Log into your Stout CareerLink profile. Don’t have a log in? Contact UW-Stout Career Services by email or call 715/232-1601.
2. Hover over the “Interview Schedules” option and click “New Interview Schedule Request”
3. Fill in the blanks, noting the type of schedule you require and click “Save & Continue”
4. Link existing or new job opportunities to your interview schedule request and click “Submit Request”

Interviewing space is limited! More information about UW-Stout Career Services can be found here.


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