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South Dakota Agritourism Conference

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PIERRE, S.D. – The South Dakota Agritourism conference will take place in Mitchell, July 15, on the campus of Mitchell Technical Institute.

"Agritourism is a vital part of the tourism industry in South Dakota," said Richard Benda, secretary of the Department of Tourism and State Development. "This conference is an opportunity for business owners to learn and network with other people in the industry so that we can better serve the visitors to our great state."

Featured speaker at the conference will be Jane Eckert, founder of Eckert AgriMarketing. Jane has dedicated herself to helping farmers, ranchers, and tourism professionals learn more about agritourism and how to make it profitable.

The conference schedule also includes information on marketing opportunities through the South Dakota Office of Tourism and regional tourism associations, a session on liability issues for business owners, and a panel discussion featuring local agritourism business owners.

Pre-registration is available for the conference until July 4 for $15, and late registration is available for $20 through the morning of the conference. The conference is sponsored cooperatively by the Corn Palace Convention and Visitors Bureau, Great Lakes of South Dakota Tourism Association, Southeast South Dakota Tourism Association, the South Dakota Department of Agriculture and the South Dakota Office of Tourism.

Those interested in attending may download a registration form and view the conference schedule online at For more information contact Joey Hockett, South Dakota Office of Tourism at (605) 773-3301 or

The 2008 South Dakota Agritourism Conference is part of Goal 1 of the 2010 Initiative to double visitor spending in South Dakota.