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05132013 Albany County Tourism Board Rebranding
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 Albany County Tourism Board Rebranding

(Laramie Boomerang)--In a new tour of Laramie, people can stand on the corner of Ivinson and Second and watch a Wild West shootout.

With music and actors, smoking guns and a historical backdrop, the gunfight appears much like it would have in 1868 — with one major twist.

The show is viewed in video form on a smartphone or tablet.

The shootout is part of the “Legends of Laramie Tour,” which the Albany County Tourism Board, or ACTB, introduced Monday at the Alice Hardie Stevens Center during a Laramie Kickoff Rally luncheon, scheduled to coincide with National Travel and Tourism Week in Wyoming. Laramie served as one of five signature communities within Wyoming.

At the luncheon, the ACTB unveiled an overall rebranding and marketing initiative, themed “Laramie Wyoming. Real History. True Adventure.”

The tour, which is part of the rebranding, features 15 historical locations in and around the city, such as the Territorial Prison, War Memorial Stadium, The Ames Monument, Ivinson Mansion and St. Matthew’s Cathedral, among others. A Legends of Laramie poster hangs at each location, and people can scan a quick response, or QR, code or type in a website URL to access a historical video, audio file or slideshow on their mobile devices.

The shootout’s location, for example, tells the story of the “Bucket of Blood Saloon,” where Asa Moyer, Steve Long and Con Wagner “served up justice in the back room of their saloon.”

The tour’s locations can be found at www.visitlaramie.org, the ACTB’s website.

Brittany Richards, ACTB assistant director, said the branding initiative is meant to highlight Laramie’s past and recreational opportunities from a fresh perspective.

“It’s promoting the two products that Laramie has: history and adventure” she said. “So, when you think of adventure, you’re going to think of the outdoors, you’re going to think of the mountains, Vedauwoo, the prairies — all of those things. And that’s what we want to portray, while still having a little bit of history involved.”

Richards said the initiative includes a new slogan, vision and theme; a new website and visitor’s guide; and various advertisements in magazines and online, along with the tour.

Fred Ockers, ACTB executive director, said the initiative would modernize the theme and take advantage of new technology.

“We had the ‘Live the West’ theme for about five years,” he said. “It brings something new to the table. Hopefully, it creates new interest. People overlook what they’ve seen over five years. Now they’re looking at something new, so it catches their eye.”

Richards said the ACTB did a “soft launch” of the website April 9.

“We took the whole thought of Laramie and Albany County being gorgeous,” she said. “When people ask you, ‘Why do you live in Albany County? Why do you live in Laramie?’ What do you think? You think of the mountains, you think of the scenery, you think of the beautiful landscape. We wanted to show our visitors that.”

The website includes much of the same information as before, Richards said, but with a simplified design and some additional features, such as the Legends of Laramie Tour, a calendar and a section where vendors can list their businesses.

“It’s very user friendly,” she said. “We really want to encourage people, if they’re having an event in Albany County, to post it on our calendar.”

Since the launch, she said page views have gone up 42 percent compared to this time last year. In addition, visitor guide requests have gone up 371 percent compared to this time last year.

“That number is the thing I’m most proud of,” she said. “Last year, for April we had 889 (visitor guide requests). This year, we had 4,182. So if 10 percent of those people come here, that’s 418 people that are going to come visit Laramie and Albany County, just based off April’s numbers.”

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Wyoming Travel Industry Coalition (WTIC)
P.O. Box 1003, Cheyenne, WY 82003  Phone: (307) 634-8816, Fax (307) 632-0249