2016 Inaugural People's Coast Summit
$88 – $110
2016 Inaugural People's Coast Summit

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Old Mill Event Center

210 3rd St

Garibaldi, OR

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The Oregon Coast Visitors Association (OCVA) will be presenting the Inaugural People's Coast Summit, Tuesday, October 18th & Wednesday, October 19th, 2016, hosted by the Garibaldi Tourism Commission, DBA Visit Garibaldi. 

This annual summit is a two-day professional development event with ample social/networking time built in and will offer an excursion on the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad!

All meals and tickets on the excursion are included with the registration fee.

Host Location: The Old Mill Event Center

Lodging Options in Garibaldi

Lodging Options in Rockaway

Thank you to our conference sponsors:  Visit Garibaldi, Chinook Winds Casino Resort, MEDIAmerica


October 18th (Day 1)

  • 9:30am  10:30am: Morning General Session - TBA
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 1 - How to Pitch a Story to the Media
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 2 - Online Reputation Management
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 3 - Travel Oregon 101
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 4 - Maximizing Global Sales: Tour Operator & Industry Expert Panel
  • 12:00pm – 12:30pm: Networking/Break
  • 12:30pm  1:30pm: Lunch General Session - "World Famous Fisher Poets Perform"
  • 1:30pm – 2:00pm: Networking/Break
  • 2:00pm – 3:30pm: Breakout Session 1 - How to Pitch a Story to the Media
  • 2:00pm – 3:30pm: Breakout Session 2 - Is the Customer Always Right? - Customer Service Discussion
  • 2:00pm – 3:30pm: Breakout Session 3 - Travel Oregon 101
  • 2:00pm – 3:30pm: Breakout Session 4 - Maximizing Global Sales: Tour Operator & Industry Expert Panel
  • 3:30pm – 4:00pm: Networking/Break
  • 4:00pm – 5:30pm: Entertainment (To be announced)
  • 5:30pm – 7:30pm: Dinner Reception - "Authentic Astoria" Keynote speaker Mac Burns
  • 8:00pm  Onward: Entertainment

October 19th (Day 2)

  • 9:30am  10:30am: Morning General Session - Host City and Sponsors
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 1 - Successful Online Marketing for Tourism Promotion
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 2 - Is the Customer Always Right? - Customer Service Discussion
  • 10:30am  12:00pm: Breakout Session 3 - Online Reputation Management
  • 10:30am - 12:00pm:  Growing Oregon's Agrotourism
  • 12:00pm – 12:30pm: Networking/Break
  • 12:30pm  1:30pm: Lunch General Session - TBA
  • 2:00pm  3:30pm: Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad Adventure!
  • 3:30pm: Adjourn


Step back in time and experience a bit of yesteryear. Enjoy the beautiful Oregon Coast line by riding the rail behind a historic Steam Locomotive. This scenic trip chugs along Tillamook Bay and gives passengers views of the ocean. Great for all ages, this trip will give you a glimpse into history and a unique view of the Oregon Coast and the Nehalem River Canyon.

More info: http://oregoncoastscenic.org/


"World Famous Fisher Poets Perform"
A special performance, just for us! Let these Fishermen Poets inspire your imagination, just as this iconic Oregon Coast event has inspired other gatherings all over the world. They will also tell the tale of the rise of the Fishermen Poets.
Presenters: Jon Broderick, Founder of the annual Fisher Poets Gathering in Astoria and Jay Speakman, Fisher Poet/Entertainer

"Authentic Astoria"
Change is tough but Astoria is tougher. As you will hear in this presentation, long-time Astorians take change in stride. Since its founding in 1811, Astoria has weathered numerous changes in economy, demographic and community identity.  Honoring Astoria’s historic and cultural roots was carefully considered during the integration of tourism with their traditional industries. Widely known as the best example on the coast of how to successfully take advantage of a tourism economy while holding fast to history, culture and community character, Astoria continues to be a rising star and a significant player in Oregon's tourism industry
Presenter: Mac Burns, Executive Director of Clatsop County Historical Society


Online Reputation Management
Managing your online reputation requires a whole new skill set including monitoring the online conversation and engaging with customers and the tech-savvy to promote yourself in the best channels. These skills are becoming essential for small businesses. This class is designed for the hospitality and service related business that depends on reviews from such sites as Travelocity, Yelp, Trip Advisor and Google Local. In this course we will cover claiming your business in these and other sites, how to get reviews from real customers and how to deal with negative reviews.
Presenter: Misty Lambrecht, Webfoot Marketing and Design

Travel Oregon 101 (The Oregon Coast)
This seminar offers an overview of The Oregon Coasts travel and tourism industry, designed to help visitor-related organizations and businesses take advantage of the many opportunities offered by Travel Oregon and the Oregon Coast Visitors Association. Find out how to partner with other industry members around the state to maximize your exposure to visitors. Every attendee receives a resource packet brimming with information and contacts for future reference. You will learn how to get looped into the tourism industry’s communication system (at the local, regional, statewide, national and international levels), how to let Travel Oregon know you’re out there and ready for visitors, and what programs and services Travel Oregon offers that help businesses, organizations and communities draw more visitors.
Presenter: Carole Astley, CMP | Senior Manager, Industry & Visitor Services

Successful Online Marketing for Tourism Promotion
What works? what doesn't? Where most tourism marketing agencies fear to tread and where they are hemorrhaging potential visitors. Content will include hot new tips for: Search engine marketing (paid search), video marketing, re-marketing, the potential of apps and their downside, social media marketing, cross channel marketing and more.
Presenter: John Hope-Johnston, Chief Strategist, HPR Internet Marketing Agency

Is the Customer Always Right? - Customer Service Discussion
This panel discussion will solicit customer service dilemmas from the audience, present examples of exemplary customer service and offer tips on how to handle people who threaten to write a bad review on social media.  Attendees will be given opportunities to ask questions and share their customer service stories.
Presenter: Moderated by Sue Meyers, OCVA Past President and manager of Land’s End at Canon Beach. Panelists, Wendy Higgins, former General Manager, Oceanlake Lodge, Cannon Beach, Gene Tish, Owner/Manager, Garibaldi House and Susan Palmer, Visitor Service Manager, Travel Portland.

How to pitch a story to the media
Editors and bloggers get hundreds of story pitches every day. Learn how to take the proper steps to prepare your story pitch to get them to hit reply instead of recycle. The editors at MEDIAmerica will tell you what the media is looking for and how to create a successful story pitch.
Presenter:   Jon Shadel, Editor, MEDIAmerca

Growing Oregon's Agrotourism
We’ve got trailblazers, taste-makers, and grassroots innovators working to make Oregon a premier destination for authentic, agricultural experiences. This session highlights rural community leaders and business owners championing exceptional agritourism experiences across the state. We’ll share updates and new business resources created by the Oregon Agritourism Network.
Presenters: Alexa Carey (Moderator), Destination Development Specialist – Culinary & Agritourism, Travel Oregon, Erika Polmar, Founder, Plate & Pitchfork, Jess Weiland, Food & Farm Director, High Desert Food & Farm Alliance, Scottie Jones, Owner, Leaping Lamb Farm & US Farm Stay Association

Maximizing Global Sales: Tour Operator & Industry Expert Panel
Join us for an informative panel discussion with local, domestic and international tour operators along with a local hotelier sharing key insights and benefits of working with tour operators. The discussion will be facilitated by Teresa O’Neill, VP of Global Sales at Travel Oregon, and will include information on how to work with tour operators, international markets that are ripe for the Oregon Coast, local opportunities, as well as short and long-term strategies. Come prepared to ask questions!
Presenters: Teresa O'Neill, Vice President, Global Sales, Travel Oregon


 Jon Shadel, Editor, MEDIAmerca - Jon Shadel is senior travel editor at MEDIAmerica, where he edits and produces multimedia features for Travel Oregon, in addition to more than a half-dozen visitor guides for Travel Oregon, Oregon Coast Visitor’s Association, Travel Lane County, City of Seaside and Travel Salem. As a journalist, he’s contributed to more than a dozen publications and has consulted with leading Northwest brands on content strategy. He has a passion for writing about place and helping destinations throughout the state tell more honest and compelling stories. He holds his MA in international relations from the University of Exeter in the U.K., where he studied media trends.

Mayor (former) Willis L. Van Dusen - Willis served the mayor of Astoria from 1985 to ???. Willis served as a councilor for six years before being elected mayor. He took the oath of office in January 1991 and has been re-elected every four years since that time. Shortly after he was elected mayor, Willis Van Dusen appeared in the movie Free Willy, which was filmed in Astoria in 1993. He played the role of "Fish Vendor."  Willis Van Dusen has very close roots to Astoria and is one in a long line of Van Dusens to represent the City of Astoria. In the 1850s, future President Ulysses S. Grant visited Van Dusen's ancestor, Adam Van Dusen, when he came to Astoria. More recently, Willis Van Dusen greeted former President Bill Clinton who visited Astoria in May 2008 while campaigning for Hillary Clinton in the Democratic Primaries.  In addition to serving as Mayor of Astoria, Willis Van Dusen owns a local soft-drink bottling franchise, Van Dusen Beverages. Van Dusen is a graduate of Astoria High School's Class of 1971 and earned a degree in business from the University of Oregon in 1975.

John Hope-Johnston, Owner HP - John is a Certified Internet Marketer from the Internet Marketing Association. Inbound Marketing Certified by Hubspot Academy. Trained in advanced Internet Marketing by U.C. Irvine. Author of: Secrets for Successful Social media Marketing and How to Market in the 21st Century (Amazon.com)

Misty Lambrecht, Owner, Webfoot Marketing and Design - Misty is a one-stop solution and reliable resource for small business dealing with online marketing thought a social media and a functional websites. She has owned Webfoot Marketing and Design for nine year, her main focus has been on teaching small business to manage their websites and social media presents themselves. I understand small business do not always have the resources to hire expensive firms to manage their online presents, but can be very successful through coaching, training and educational classes. Misty's do it yourself approach has helped hundreds of Oregon small businesses be successful managing there online presents. Misty is a Google-certified trainer and has taught a wide range of classes about the Google suite of products, website development, search engine optimization and Social Media classes. She presents regular courses, live and in person, at Clackamas, Clatsop and Oregon Coast Community Colleges and elsewhere throughout the state of Oregon. You'll also find some of Misty's most popular courses available 24/7 online, via the BizCenter.org learning resource.

Carole Astley, CMP | Senior Manager, Industry & Visitor Services - Carole manages the state network of Welcome Centers and oversees day-to-day operation of Welcome Center at PDX Airport. For Travel Oregon's state wide operations, she develops and delivers industry training and professional development opportunities, including the Governor’s Conference on Tourism and the Travel Oregon 101 programs. Her favorite Oregon activity is skiing Timberline at Mt. Hood.

Gerald Duane "Boomer " Wright, General Manager of Sea Lion Caves - Boomer is a retired public educator of 31 years serving as teacher, coach, principal, and lastly a superintendent. He served as the PR Liaison for SELCO Credit Union for 5 years where his job was to meet Customer banking needs here in Florence, Oregon. For the last five successful years he has served as General Manager of Sea Lion Caves. His vast experience dealing with "Customers" in a variety of formats, whether in the school setting, banking setting, or in retail, has allowed he and his staffs to be very successful making the Customer the Boss. In addition, as with Disney, Sea Lion Caves has the same motto, "Keep it simple, keep it clean, and give the Customer value for their money and time."

Teresa O'Neill, Vice President, Global Sales, Travel OregonTeresa O’Neill knows a lot about travel. She racks up more than 100,000 miles per year circumnavigating the globe to promote international tourism to her adopted home state of Oregon. Teresa is currently the Vice President of Global Sales for Travel Oregon after beginning her tenure there as the Director of International Sales and Marketing in 2003 2005. Before that time, she honed her international marketing and sales skills at Travel Portland as the European Sales Manager and as Director of Sales at Kimpton Group Hotels. Teresa is passionate about growing the international leisure market for Oregon and enjoys traveling the state to communicate the best ways to accomplish this task. She has chaired the International Marketing Partners (a group of Oregon state agencies engaged in international trade) and was the U. S. Travel Association Coordinator for the Travel Trade Program Development Network.

Erika Polmar, Founder, Plate & Pitchfork - Erika Polmar created Plate & Pitchfork Farm dinners to reconnect diners with the people and places that grow and craft their food.  In the process of growing her business she developed a keen understanding of the land use, regulatory and economic issues that often challenge the agricultural and culinary producers. She is committed to developing pathways, partnerships and policies to overcome these obstacles and support the continued development of responsible agritourism in Oregon.  Erika honed her marketing, product development and competitive intelligence experience in positions at citysearch.com, Ecotrust, Eleven, the Oregon Multimedia Alliance and J.K. Carriere Wines.   She’s enthusiastically working to end hunger in Oregon in partnership with Farmers Ending Hunger, and spends her time off in the woods with her loyal Labrador. You’ll find her at plateandpitchfork.com or on Instagram @pitchforkpdx.

Jess Weiland, Food & Farm Director, High Desert Food & Farm Alliance - Jess Weiland is fueled by the belief that food is a medium to improve civic engagement and that many problems can be solved over a shared meal. As the Food & Farm Director with the High Desert Food and Farm Alliance (HDFFA), she works with area farmers, ranchers, and community leaders to organize agritourism and farm events in rural Jefferson and Crook Counties to build a more connected and vibrant food economy in Central Oregon. Jess has a degree in Nonprofit Management and Global Studies, grew up on a tree farm, and operated a diversified vegetable CSA farm nestled in southeastern Wisconsin. Jess will share what has worked phenomenally well for Central Oregon agritourism and where she thinks they are headed! You’ll find her online at hdffa.org or on Facebook.

Scottie Jones, Owner, Leaping Lamb Farm & US Farm Stay Association - Scottie Jones has been a farmer, co-owning Leaping Lamb Farm in Alsea with her husband, since 2003. She is responsible for the sheep, chickens, turkeys, and one very fat donkey, while her husband handles the planting. Since 2006, she has also run a farm stay to diversify the farm’s income and improve its sustainability. In 2010 she launched Farm Stay U.S., an organization and website promoting farm stays around the country. The focus is to educate both travelers and farmers alike as to the advantages of staying on and hosting a farm, stay, respectively. You’ll find her at leapinglambfarm.com or on Facebook.

Wendy Higgins, former General Manager of the award winning Ocean Lodge in Cannon Beach - Wendy has received numerous awards for Leadership and customer service.  She was the 2009 Oregon Lodging Association Innkeeper of the Year, received an award in April 2016 from CEDR (Clatsop Economic Development Resources) for Customer Service-Large Business and has received two awards from the Cannon Beach Chamber for Outstanding Customer Service and Leadership. She is currently serving as General Manager of The Lodge at Columbia Point.

Gene Tish, Owner/Manager, Garibaldi House - His hotel is rated #1 on Tripadvisor. Gene’s breakfast buffet is one of the best on the North Coast. He earned Tillamook County’s 2013 Strategic Vision Award for the Economy for his work in promoting tourism in the region.

Susan Palmer, Visitor Service Manager, Travel Portland - Held the position of Director of Retail Operations at Tillamook County Creamery Association for 13 years. Susan is a hospitality professional who is passionate about providing guests an exceptional experience.

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Old Mill Event Center

210 3rd St

Garibaldi, OR

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