Cookeville hosts travel writers from around the country

COOKEVILLE – The Cookeville-Putnam County Visitors’ Bureau joins the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and Upper Cumberland Tourism Association to host 12 nationally-recognized travel journalists this week.

The visitors’ bureau was privileged to host the opening welcome reception on Tuesday evening to kick off the five-day tour, treating the event as an added opportunity to highlight additional area partners that were unable to be a part of the main travel itinerary.

Journalists from publications such as USA Today, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Canoe & Kayak, Do South Magazine, and NPR, attended the event, meeting & greeting with area visitor destinations.

From CrossFit Mayhem to Calfkiller Brewing Company to Lenny & Eva jewelry to Canoe the Caney, there was a wide variety of destinations and attractions represented. And even the venue is a visitor destination, with hosting at SaltBox Farms, a unique lodging and event venue, perfect for a travel feature in numerous publications.

Each of the visitors’ bureaus’ marketing pillars were represented in the showcase: outdoors, fitness/sports, motorcycling, culture/arts, and culinary/crafts.

The goal of the reception was to offer a taste of Tennessee, a kick-off to their week in the Upper Cumberland. The week’s itinerary offers visits to state parks, kayak demos from local resident/champion freestyle kayaker Eric Jackson with a tour of his Jackson Kayak facility, meals at mom ‘n’ pops throughout the region, attending local festivals like WCTE’s Blues & Brews Craft Beer Festival, and closes with a sunset dinner cruise on Dale Hollow Lake to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Dale Hollow Dam.

“The coverage that comes from hosting these tours is more valuable than any traditional print advertising we can do,” said Zach Ledbetter, vice president of visitor development. “It offers memorable, first-hand experiences for the journalists which in-turn creates authentic editorial writing to inspire consumers to visit our destinations.”

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