eTraveler - December 13, 2023

December 14, 2023

Last Chance: Apply to Host a Tourism Insider Meeting

In 2023, the Iowa Tourism Office launched Tourism Insider Meetings to provide opportunities for industry partners from across the state to gather, collaborate, share ideas and network. We would like to invite partner communities, businesses or organizations to express interest to be one of the five hosts for these meetings, which are a great opportunity to show off your visitor assets and success stories to tourism industry partners from around the state. We encourage partnering with others in your area to co-host. Please note if you have already hosted a Tourism Insider Meeting, you cannot host again during this cycle. If you are interested in being a host community for the 2024-2025 cycle, please review the details and apply to the link below by Friday, December 15. Please reach out to Stephanie Neppl ( with questions.


Deadline: 2024 Arrivalist Program Access

The Iowa Tourism Office is again partering with Arrivalist to provide partners exclusive access to the State Visitation Dashboard with county and city level visitation data from January 2021 through December 2024. The dashboard allows you to segment visitation by month or day/weekend and provides insights on origin markets, length of stay and more.

The 2024 program provides 24/7 access to the dashboard on a sliding scale of investment:
  • $2,500 (marketing budgets under $500,000/year)
  • $5,000 (marketing budgets between $500,000-$2,000,000/year)
  • $10,000 (marketing budgets over $2,000,000/year)
If you are interesting in purchasing access to the Arrivalist Dashboard in 2024, please complete the sign up form by Friday, December 15, 2023. There is no limit to the number of partners that can sign up. If you have questions, please contact Matthew Kodis (


How to Maximize Your Arrivalist Data

Communities throughout Iowa are using their Arrivalist data to inspire new campaigns and initiatives. Here are some tips from partners on utilizing visitation data:
  • Pay attention to specific time of year when visitors are coming to your destination and use it to help determine what cities are best for ad placements throughout the year.
  • Share information with elected officials, city administrators, hospitality partners, etc. to show you understand the area's visitation and encourage them to use you as a resource for this type of information.
  • Compare your numbers to other communities and share with your city administrator to help make your case for tourism amenities that will support the community and industry.
  • Share information with local hotel/motel marketing committees to help them understand traveler trends and develop goals and marketing strategies for increasing overnight stays.

New Grant Opportunity: Inspire Iowa

The Inspire Iowa Cultural Tourism Grant program will support a limited number of highly visible and high-impact arts, culture and heritage events, performances, productions or exhibitions. Projects should attract new visitors to Iowa communities and showcase our state as a cultural tourism destination.

The program supports one-time costs associated with securing, presenting and/or marketing a special arts or cultural event, performance, production or exhibit. Eligible applicants are nonprofit arts, cultural or humanities organizations or communities that operate a cultural facility in Iowa.

Applications are open now, with a deadline of January 31, 2024. Please contact David Schmitz ( with the Iowa Arts Council with questions.


Add Your Events to

Travelers are already making plans for 2024, so now's a great time to prioritize adding your events to Here are three reasons why you should utilize our FREE calendar of events:
  1. Approximately 25% of the total web traffic to reviews the online calendar of events.
  2. The Iowa Tourism Office uses the calendar of events to source events for regular monthly media hits at TV and radio stations.
  3. The Iowa Tourism Office uses the calendar of events to select an event from each travel area for inclusion in the monthly consumer newsletter, which is sent to approximately 103,000 potential travelers.

When adding your events, make sure you're logged in to easily edit for future dates, add photos (events with photos automatically rise to the top) and be sure you're submitting it at least four weeks prior to the event date(s).

Showcase Your City in the New 2024 This is Iowa Guide

The new This is Iowa guide will be released in 2024 and share the story of Iowa's communities, workplaces, economic vitality and vibrant culture. Compelling content and captivating photos will help show off Iowa's attractions, adventure opportunities, arts and culture offerings, affordable cost of living, award-winning schools, key industries and more to prospective talent, current residents and potential visitors. Advertising space in the guide is available to partners. Space must be reserved by January 5, 2024 and necessary artwork must be submitted by January 12, 2024. For more information, contact Suzanna de Baca (

Hotel Management Spotlights Hotel Julien Manager

Congratulations to Dwight Hopfauf for being named to Hotel Management Magazine's list of "49 GMs to Watch." Dwight manages Dubuque's Hotel Julien through IDM Hospitality Management and said he approaches the business as an entrepreneur, treating it as his own. He places high value on his staff as evidenced by the longevity of his employees and the honors he's nominated them for. Dwight was also named the Iowa Hotel & Lodging Association General Manager of the Year. Congratulations on your achievements, Dwight!

Upcoming Meetings

  • January 4, 2024 - iTip Webinar: Preview of the 2024 Legislative Session, virtual
  • January 17, 2024 - iTip Tourism Legislative Night, Des Moines
  • February 8-9, 2024 - iLEAD Leadership Symposium, Clinton
  • February 27-28, 2024 - Tourism Insider Meeting, Decorah

Check out the calendar of events for more details and upcoming meetings.