Conference Information

Destinations Wisconsin invites you to explore, engage and evolve at the 2021 Wisconsin Fall Tourism Conference to be held at the La Crosse Center!

It has been a while since we’ve seen one another and we are more than ready to bring everyone back together safely. We have an exciting agenda planned, including keynote speaker David Cooks who will share his “Paralysis to Purpose” story that is sure to inspire attendees to endure whatever comes before us and to go forward with a plan and a purpose. Plus, WI Dept. of Tourism Acting Secretary Anne Sayers will be joining us along with speakers on digital marketing, tourism trends, and more. Explore La Crosse will be hosting a wonderful marketplace and reception Thursday evening.

Registration Rates & Policies:  

Registration Fees:

  • Early Bird Fee: Destinations WI Member DMO - $125, Non-member - $140 Register by October 9, 2021
  • Full Fee: Destinations WI Member DMO - $145, Non-member - $160
  • One-day registration and full-time Student Fee: $85

No refunds will be provided for prepaid registrations after October 31, 2021. 

Sponsorship & Exhibitor Opportunities - Destinations WI invites you to be a Wisconsin Fall Tourism Conference sponsor.  Learn more about sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities. 

*Register online

Thank you to our 2021 sponsors:

Wisconsin Department of TourismExplore La CrosseKwik TripBoelter & LincolnRotary LightsMidwest Living/Meredith TravelMadden MediaCircle WisconsinThe Weber Group, Wisconsin Great River Road and Simpleview.

Lodging Information:

Wisconsin Tourism Trailblazer Awards -  Awards for the best Wisconsin tourism marketing and partnership campaigns will be presented by Destinations Wisconsin at the WI Fall Tourism Conference.   Enter your project or partnership, or learn more. Deadline to enter is October 8, 2021.

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Agenda is subject to change.

Online Registration Now Available

Or, download a registration form and mail it in with payment.

Conference Agenda

Thursday, November 4 2021
11:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Conference Registration in Lobby

12:00 PM - 1:45 PM

Opening Luncheon & Keynote:  Paralysis to Purpose -  David Cooks

Enjoy lunch and hear David’s “Paralysis to Purpose” story which is sure to inspire you to endure whatever comes before us and to go forward with a plan and a purpose. Sponsored by KwikTrip



2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Breakout Sessions 

1. Destination Next - The DestinationNEXT 2021 Futures Study is a strategic road map that provides direction for how destination leaders should navigate the destination and tourism industry’s highly fluid future. The session will help prioritize decision making in the months and years ahead for destination organizations of any size and budget.

2. How to use User-Generated Content to Run High-Impact, Low-Budget Campaigns - User-Generated Content is a great way to highlight destinations in an authentic, engaging, and cost-effective way. With examples from Destination Marketing Organizations across North America, you'll learn tips and tricks on how to find, acquire and use UGC to promote your destination and your tourism partners.

3. Pandemic Lessons Learned – Well, it’s not over yet, but we’ve all learned a lot and have pivoted numerous times over the past year and a half.  Hear from Wisconsin tourism leaders on how their industry sector has adapted and what takeaways will we continue to see in the foreseeable future.

3:00 PM - 3:20 PM

Afternoon Break - Enjoy snacks and beverages while networking with your colleagues between breakout sessions. Sponsored by Wisconsin Mississippi River Parkway Commission and The Weber Group

3:20 PM - 4:20 PM

Repeat Breakout Sessions

4:30 PM - 6:30 PM

Marketplace & Reception

Soak in the 2021 Fall Tourism's Marketplace and Reception with the help of some of our favorite local hors d’oeuvres and beverages. Try your luck at the Explore La Crosse Casting Competition and have a chance to win door prizes prizes when you visit all the marketplace sponsor and exhibitor booths. Network with your colleagues and get caught up on the stories we missed telling at last year's event before making your way to some of the best restaurants the region has to offer! Sponsored by Midwest Living/Meredith Corp. and Madden Media

4:30 PM - 5:00 PM

OPTIONAL- Tour of La Crosse Center Renovation. 

7:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Downtown Dine Around

Downtown La Crosse offers he full gamut of local restaurant options. We'll have menus available at registration, along with a QR code that'll take you to our restaurant page, and from there you'll be able to decide which restaurant you'd like to dine Thursday night and to make your reservation. Or, feel free to make a reservation before the conference as well.  Local favorites include: Piggy's, The Waterfront, The Freighthouse, Lovechild, Buzzard Billy's, The Crow, Digger's and many more! If you're looking for some local flavor when it comes to the liquid portion of the evening, be sure to check out Pearl Street Brewery, 608 Brewing, Turtle Stack Brewery and La Crosse Distilling Company.

Friday, November 5 2021
7:30 AM - 9:30 AM

Conference Registration in Lobby

7:45 AM - 9:10 AM

Breakfast, Wisconsin Tourism Trailblazer Awards Ceremony & WI Department of Tourism Update

Join Destinations Wisconsin in recognizing the best in Wisconsin tourism marketing and partnership efforts.  To learn more about the awards and apply, click here.  Then, Acting WI Dept. of Tourism Secretary Anne Sayers will give us the latest on the agency's projects and programs.  Sponsored by Boelter & Lincoln


9:20 AM - 10:20 AM

Breakout Sessions

1. Demystifying Digital Marketing - Digital marketing has never been more powerful - or more complex. This session will help to clarify the countless tools, tactics, and trends of the digital landscape, with an eye towards impactful choices for organizations large or small. 

2. Destination Development and the DMO - Discover how three Wisconsin DMOs are leading destination development projects in their communities, and how they are aligning themselves more closely with municipal leadership and business community as a result. 

3.Travel & Tourism Forecast - The US Travel Association shares the latest economic indicators for the nation’s and Wisconsin’s travel and tourism industry.


10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Repeat Breakout Sessions

11:40 AM - 12:40 PM

Closing Luncheon: Setting the Standard - Don Weber, The Weber Group

La Crosse entrepreneur Don Weber will share how his company brings high-quality destinations and experiences to markets that don’t have them. With numerous businesses; including The Charmant Hotel, The Waterfront Restaurant and Home2 Suites by Hilton, Don and The Weber Group set the standard for what those in the hospitality industry strive for.

During the luncheon, we will also unveil the 2022 conference host destination and present the Marketplace door prize winners.


Fall Convention Sponsors