Blacks in Travel and Tourism Is First Grant Recipient of Tourism Cares’ Diversity in Tourism Fund

Tourism Cares remains committed to create an inclusive industry with the first Diversity in Tourism grantee being the Cultural Heritage Economic Alliance, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit based in Washington, DC, which powers the National Blacks in Travel and Tourism Collaborative (BTT). The grant will support BTT’s Black Talent Tourism Directory (BTTD). The Black Talent Tourism Directory is an online platform created as a matchmaking tool for Black travel and tourism businesses, professionals and students to access business, employment, internship, speaker and media opportunities in travel and tourism. Through BTTD, a series of professional development webinars will be offered to help prepare Blacks in travel and tourism to take full advantage of industry opportunities. Industry stakeholders such as DMOs, travel associations, brands and media can join BTTD as industry partners and post opportunities to match with Black talent. Industry partner’s membership also support the maintenance and sustainability of the platform as an industry resource.

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Blacks in Travel & Tourism Partners with Black-Owned Receptive Tour Operator for U.S. Black Cultural Heritage Road Trip

The National Blacks in Travel & Tourism Collaborative (BTT) working in partnership with the Cultural Heritage Alliance for Tourism, Inc. (CHAT), a Black-owned receptive tour operator based in Miami, FL, is launching the Black Cultural Heritage Road Trip on May 30. The Black Cultural Heritage Tours (BCHT) team will travel throughout the United States curating local, immersive Black cultural heritage tour itineraries and experiences through connections with the people and places that have shaped Black communities from the past to the present. “As the only Black-owned receptive tour operator in the U.S., our mission is to create inclusion and engagement of local Black cultural heritage community assets in the multibillion-dollar tourism industry, spurring economic growth and sustainability for small businesses and cultural institutions in underserved Black communities,” said Stephanie Jones, president of CHAT and founder of BTT. The BCHT itineraries aim to illuminate, amplify, protect, and preserve cultural heritage throughout the United States through storytelling and authentic local experiences that are life-affirming and sustainable.

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Celebrating Black Life in Las Vegas: Honoring the Past, Shaping the Future

The Mob Museum, The National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, announces a special program Celebrating Black Life in Las Vegas: Honoring the Past, Shaping the Future to take place Wednesday, Feb. 17 from 7 to 8:30 p.m inside the Historic Courtroom on the second floor. To watch a livestream of this event, click on the “Watch” button here. African Americans have played an integral role in the development of Las Vegas since at least the 1940s. It is a rich story of painful challenges and hard-earned triumphs. This panel discussion features individuals who have lived through the highs and lows of the African-American experience in Las Vegas, as well as those who document and preserve that history for future generations. The panel also will discuss the HUNDRED (Historic Urban Neighborhood Design Redevelopment) Plan, the city initiative to redevelop the historic West Las Vegas neighborhood. Cost: Free for Museum Members or with Museum admission. Reservations are required. Click here to RSVP. For more information, please call (702) 229-2734 or visit themobmuseum.org. ABOUT THE MOB MUSEUM: The Mob Museum, the National Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, provides a world-class journey through true stories—from the birth of the Mob to today’s headlines. The Mob Museum offers a provocative, contemporary look at these topics through hundreds of artifacts and immersive storylines. Numerous interactive exhibits include a Crime Lab, Firearm Training Simulator and Organized Crime Today exhibit. The Museum is also home to The Underground, a Prohibition history exhibition featuring a speakeasy and distillery sponsored by Zappos. For more information and to register, visit www.themobmuseum.org/events/.

Supporting and Celebrating Black Culture in St. Louis

St. Louis doesn’t just promote, but celebrates its Black-owned businesses and heritage, offering travelers more than a few experiences to support local Black entrepreneurs. Culinary experiences are an easy  one. Gourmet Soul Restaurant is reinventing traditional soul food in fun, innovative ways, while places like Turn are putting a healthy spin on comfort food. Pharaohs Donuts and La Patisserie Chouquette bring the sweetness with both local favorites and fancier pastries, offering curbside orders and – in Pharohs case – the occasional free afternoon giveaway! It’s not just culinary discoveries. Hospitality icons like Central West End Bed and Breakfast allow visitors to support Black-owned accommodations. A bit of yoga The Collective or art-based mindfulness at Shine In All Shades provide unique escapes all run by Black locals. Retail therapy is still a thing, supporting local businesses like the jewelry makers on display at Diversity Gallery or the authors sold at EyeSeeMe Bookstore. And while so much talk has erupted about tearing down and defacing statues, St. Louis is proud of its statues celebrating Black history, including Frankie Muse Freeman (Kiener Plaza), Harriett and Dred Scott (Old Courthouse), George Washington Carver (Missouri Botanical Gardens), and Ozzie Smith, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock and James Cool Papa Bell (Busch Stadium). Visits to the Scott Joplin House or the National Blues Museum will bring the sounds of some of the nation’s most iconic Black musicians to life. For more information and resources to plan your trip, visit: https://explorestlouis.com/

“Insights and Perspectives on the Black Traveler” webinar, Dec 8th, 1 pm EST

Black U.S. leisure travelers spent $109.4 billion on travel in 2019 according to a report by MMGY Global “The Black Traveler: Insights, Opportunities & Priorities” and a December 8th webinar will present findings from Phase I of the study. The “Insights and Perspectives on the Black Traveler” webinar will be presented at 1 pm EST on December 8th by the DEAI (Diversity, Equity, Accessibility & Inclusion) Committee of The Society of American Travel Writers (SATW).  

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MMGY GLOBAL LAUNCHES GROUNBREAKING STUDY ON THE BLACK TRAVELER UNDER A NEW PARTNERSHIP WITH KEY ADVOCACY GROUPS

MMGY Global announced that it is developing a series of market research studies to be informed by diverse travel advocacy organizations to better identify the needs, behaviors and sentiment of underrepresented travel communities. The first installment of these studies, powered by MMGY Travel Intelligence, is titled ​The Black Traveler: Insights, Opportunities & Priorities and focuses on Black leisure travelers and meetings professionals. The Black Traveler study is set to be published in late October. The Black Traveler: Insights, Opportunities & Priorities​ report will include results from: MMGY Global’s 2019 Shifflet ​TRAVEL PERFORMANCE/Monito​rT​M profiling Black leisure travelers within the United States, the development of an accurate measure of the economic power of the Black traveler, a new survey analyzing the current opinions and attitudes of Black leisure travelers globally, and a new survey of Black meetings professionals from the members of the National Coalition of Black Meeting Professionals (NCBMP). To ensure the two new surveys appropriately document the true sentiment of the Black traveler, survey questions are being developed with oversight and input from a steering committee of diverse industry experts and through partnerships with travel advocacy organizations, including the Black Travel Alliance (BTA), the NCBMP and the National Association of Black Hotel Owners, Operators and Developers (NABHOOD). MMGY Global and its supporting sponsors, including Choice Hotels International®, Tripadvisor and Virginia Tourism Office, ​have committed that all net proceeds will be donated back to the three partner organizations ​–​ BTA, NABHOOD and NCBMP ​– ​as well as several other not-for-profit groups. For more information, visit https://www.mmgyglobal.com/diversity-in-travel/.