2011 Salute to Travel & Tourism Results in Lots of Photos!

Congratulations to all who received awards at the 2011 Salute to Travel & Tourism! The Civil War-themed banquet was loads of fun and the Convention & Visitors Bureau staff and board of directors were pleased to honor those who are making a difference in the local tourism industry.

About 200 people attended the Civil War-themed banquet and everyone had a great time. Thanks for attending!!

The Awards

The Pinnacle Award was presented to Dr. Thomas and Mrs. Karen Sweeney, founders of Sweeny’s Museum of Civil War History. The Pinnacle Award is presented to individuals who have been active in the travel industry for many years and have made substantial contributions to the betterment of the Springfield area’s travel industry.

Other awards presented were:

Ambassador Award: Bass Pro Fitness Festival

The Ambassador Award is presented to individuals or organizations who generated significant economic impact for the area by working to encourage tourism or secure a major convention or event in Springfield.

Left to right: Tracy Kimberlin, CVB president; Martin MacDonald, director of conservation for Bass Pro Shops and chair of the Outdoor Fitness Festival; and Matt Gifford, CVB chair. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Hospitality Award: Cooper Tennis Complex

The Hospitality Award is presented to an attraction, lodging facility or restaurant which demonstrates outstanding hospitality to the traveling public and exhibits a team spirit in promoting growth of Springfield area travel and tourism.

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, Park Board director Jodie Adams, Park Board chair Jerry Clark and CVB board chair Matt Gifford. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Spotlight Award: Askinosie Chocolate

The Spotlight Award is presented to an individual, business or organization not usually considered part of the travel and tourism industry for noteworthy contributions in advancing travel and tourism in the Springfield area.

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin; Shawn Askinosie, founder of Askinosie Choclate; and Matt Gifford, CVB board chair. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Diplomat Award: Missouri Department of Transportation

The Diplomat Award is presented to a government official, organization or employee who has provided significant support to the Springfield area travel industry.

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin; Kirk Juranas, MoDot District 8 engineer; and Matt Gifford, CVB board chair. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Decade of Service

The bureau also presented Decade of Service awards to volunteers who have served the CVB for 10 years. They are: Dean and Darlene McAnally, Mary Ellen White, JoAnn Wiksten, Jim and Beverly Wilson, Naomi Young and Jerry and Judy Young.


Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberiln; CVB volunteers Dean and Darlene McAnally; and Sharon Wittig, Tourist Information Center supervisor. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, CVB volunteer Mary Ellen White and Tourist Information Center supervisor Sharon Wittig. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, CVB volunteer JoAnn Wiksten and Tourist Information Center supervisor Sharon Wittig. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, CVB volunteers Beverly and Jim Wilson and Tourist Information Supervisor Sharon Wittig. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, CVB volunteers Judy and Jerry Young and Tourist Information supervisor Sharon Wittig. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

Along with the Decade of Service awards, the bureau announced the new John & Mary Williams Volunteer of the Year Award. The award is named after long-time volunteers John and Mary Williams. Fondly called “Mr. & Mrs. Springfield” by CVB staff, the Williamses were among the first to serve as volunteers for the bureau more than 20 years ago and continued serving until John Williams passed away in January. Mary Williams continues to serve as a volunteer.

Left to right: CVB president Tracy Kimberlin, Tourist Information Center supervisor Sharon Wittig, and CVB volunteer Mary Williams. Photo by Gerry Averett Photography

John Williams

John Williams

The CVB extends its gratitude to the following sponsors of the awards banquet: City of Springfield and CityView, University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center, Doubletree Hotel, Elliott Lodging, Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield Foundation, A Graphic Resource, Bass Print Solutions, Learfield Communications, SR Graphics, Gerry Averett Photography, Baum’s Promotional Products, OOVVDA Winery, 7 C’s Winery, Gary Ellison Productions, BBJ Linens, Pressed 4 Time Dry Cleaning and ART Salon & Spa.

See more photos below or click here for the “party pics.”

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Laura Whisler is the Vice President for the Springfield, Missouri, Convention & Visitors Bureau

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