We’re in full swing of our busy season in the tourism marketing world just now, so apologies for the erratic posting this month and next. We have a whole lot of good travel tips and content coming your way really soon when we have time to sit down and decompress, but in the meantime, you can always follow our travels in real time on Instagram and Twitter (both at @LunaticAtLarge).
In September, we stayed in hotels 10 nights of the month, but it felt like far more than that, as we also had several work day trips around the state of Tennessee. Speaking of crazy travel, we just flew back last night from an awesome trip, and October has me jetting off to San Francisco this week—if you’re a DMO who will be at eTourism, email me! I’ll be speaking on Monday then hanging out a day on each end—and Cincinnati from there and, later in the month, New Orleans, in addition to a road trip to the Natchez Trace. Have any tips for any of those places? Drop them in the comments below!
Now, a look back at September….
We spent our fifth long weekend in Oklahoma City in the past two years. This time, it was for the opening of the 70-acre Scissortail Park and the Plaza District Festival and its corresponding Mural Expo, but we also have so many new venues and other discoveries from this trip to share with you on the blog very soon. If you’re looking for more OKC content, I have Oklahoma City travel tips in spades!
We road-tripped through Canada for a week. If you think the mountains in winter are majestic, I challenge you to visit the badlands, prairies, and national parks of Alberta and Saskatchewan in the summer (or rather, early fall as it wound up being, weather-wise). We teamed up with Canada by Design again for this highly customized itinerary, and it made me fall even deeper in love with our northern neighbor, particularly Saskatoon, a city we cannot wait to explore more in depth.
We’re starting a new mural install this week! You didn’t think we were going to stop at eight, did you? Never! We’re hitting the pedal hard going forward. In partnership with Jack Daniel’s, we’re doing a month of new murals in my hometown, Tullahoma, and I could not be more excited. I’ll have a full write-up to come once all the new art is live. In the meantime, follow our nonprofit DMA’s Facebook page and also my Instagram Stories for updates in real time.
Speaking of murals, I had a full-page spread about art as the centerpiece of the Sac Bee’s homes section one recent Sunday edition. The main story was about how art can make cities thrive if government stays out of the way, and the supplementary piece was a guide for business owners to commission their own mural. I also published the full Q&A with attorney Jeremy Talcott on mural law on the blog!
We attended Pilgrimage. It would have been our fourth of five years, but given last year was rained out, it wound up being just our third. And it was the best year yet! The festival is so laid-back and just easy compared to bigger fests like Bonnaroo, and at this stage in my festival-going career, I prefer it as such. Not to mention, it’s a stone’s throw from downtown Franklin—which, by the way, we have plenty of Franklin travel tips on the blog if you need them—so you can park on the square, enjoy the area, then walk over to the horse farm where all the fun goes down. My favorite acts we saw were Lucie Silvas, Keith Urban and Lauren Daigle.
I saw my BFF Jade for a hot minute. Jade flew in to see her in-laws and go to Pilgrimage, and she stole away for a night to come see us at the Cedar House, go over some work projects and meet Charlotte Rose. Even better, I get to see her again this weekend in California!
Charlotte turned 18 months! Really, this bullet point is just an excuse to remind you how cute my niece is (again). And her personality continues to flourish as she does everything in her power to constantly entertain those around her.
Running into roadblocks left and right. I knew running a nonprofit was never going to be easy, but dang Universe, could we just have smooth sailing for one week? I keep trying to remind myself that Theodore Roosevelt knew a thing or two when he famously said “Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty…” I’m just glad I have a great husband and business partner, not to mention an army of support in everything we do!