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Public and Private Partnerships Pay Off

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PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Office of Tourism, through a joint partnership with the ethanol industry, recently received another national award for their 2006 “Twenty Bucks for the Road” campaign. 
The Odyssey Award was presented on behalf of the Travel Industry Association and in partnership with National Geographic Traveler magazine. The award is part of the premier travel awards program that recognizes the best in the travel and tourism industry. The Odyssey Award is the fourth national award the Office of Tourism has received in 2007. 
“The Odyssey Award, and other awards we’ve received before it, show us that partnerships between the public and private sectors of business can and will make big things happen in South Dakota,” said Richard Benda, secretary, South Dakota Department of Tourism and Economic Development. “This award is representative of all the businesses who work so hard to make South Dakota a must-see destination for visitors.” 
Working with the Ethanol Promotion and Information Council (EPIC) and the American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE), the “Twenty Bucks for the Road” promotion served two purposes. The first was to raise awareness of South Dakota and to encourage families to travel here, and the second was to help people adjust to the first time the United States had ever seen three dollar gasoline. 
At the same time, the campaign introduced people to ethanol-blended fuel and its advantages as a renewable and green fuel source. Through their partnership, the groups worked together to take on a subject that was dominating the national press and was a fear for most American families. 
“In South Dakota we look at the task of attracting and taking care of our visitors as a team effort,” said Billie Jo Waara, director, South Dakota Office of Tourism. “And having the support of our ethanol partners proved to be a phenomenal success, not just in attracting new visitors, but also enhancing their South Dakota experience.” 
More information on cooperative partnerships with the South Dakota Office of Tourism can be found at
The ‘Twenty Bucks’ promotion was developed in conjunction with the South Dakota Office of Tourism and South Dakota marketing agency, Lawrence & Schiller, and is part of Goal 1 of the 2010 Initiative to double visitor spending in South Dakota. The Office of Tourism serves under the direction of Richard Benda, Secretary of the Department of Tourism and State Development.