This past Memorial Day weekend, the Mall of America was abuzz when over 500 bloggers gathered for the Travel Blog Exchange (TBEX), the world’s largest gathering of travel bloggers, writers, new media content creators and social media travel industry professionals. Here, bloggers spent the weekend networking with one another, finding out how to keep their blogs relevant, and touring both the new and old gems of the Twin Cities.

MOA partnered with the Bloomington Convention & Visitors Bureau, Radisson Blu MOA, Visit Saint Paul, Meet Minneapolis and Explore Minnesota to host TBEX, making the weekend a showcase of what Minnesota has to offer to bloggers from around the world.

The fact that TBEX took place at a unique Minnesota destination like MOA means great things to the Twin Cities tourism industry. Attendees stayed at the connecting Radisson Blu and got to experience all MOA has to offer. With over 500 attendees, Minnesota is sure to be the talk of the town on numerous blogs, and in turn could bring a wave of new tourists ready to see the sights for themselves. 

In the wake of a total global crisis, the Meet Minneapolis team got to work. 

Connecting the Community

Last summer, as communities across the state reeled, the CVB launched the “We Need Us!” campaign as a rally cry and reminder on the importance of supporting the businesses that make Minneapolis so unique.

“It really came from this question of, ‘How can we support our community that’s hurting in so many ways and make locals feel comfortable making those choices?’” says senior vice president of destination branding & strategy Courtney Ries.

 

While Ernest Hemingway frequented several places across the globe throughout his lifetime, Walloon Lake, Michigan, was a place he had roots in and returned to in his early years. His father and mother, Dr. Clarence and Grace (Hall) Hemingway first came to the Walloon Lake area in the late 1800s, building their beloved cottage, Windemere, which remains in the family to this day. Ernest was just three months old when he made his first trip to the area.

 

With the events industry at a near standstill, Jess Doren realized this may have been the moment she’d been waiting for. Having produced large-scale events for big brands like Apple and Buzzfeed, she’d had little time in the past to develop events of her own, but this past summer, she and a team of fellow event pros set out to gather a community craving connection.