Chamber Event To Push Local Familiarity

Yankton Convention & Visitors Bureau director Kasi Haberman is helping spearhead FAM Day — an event meant to help familiarize local businesses and attractions with each other ahead of the busy tourism season.

Businesses and area attractions alike will have a new event to get to know each other a little better next week.

The Yankton Area Chamber of Commerce’s Convention & Visitors Bureau (CVB will be presenting FAM Day — short for “Familiarization Day” — which will be an opportunity for Yankton-area businesses to learn about local attractions and amenities to better handle the region’s influx of tourists. The event is set for Tuesday, May 8, at the Brewery.

Spearheading the effort is CVB director Kasi Haberman, who told the Press & Dakotan that the event was inspired by another trade show held in Iowa earlier this spring.

“It came to me from the editorial trade show that I went to with Meredith Publications in Des Moines,” Haberman said. “They invited communities and different businesses in the state of South Dakota to go down and showcase themselves to the editors of a bunch of different magazines they have under their umbrella. Then I was like, ‘You know, we can do something like that here and really try to get everyone a better understanding of what there is to do in Yankton.”

She wasn’t aware of any other communities that have done a similar FAM Day event.

The Chamber has held hospitality training and other events with area businesses before, but Haberman said the new event is something completely different.

“They were more geared towards one-on-one interactions and how to engage people in those kinds of things,” she said. “This is more of an education of what there is to do.”

The format of the event will mimic a normal trade show — each business/attraction will have a table and people can wander about the room and gain insight into the different entities present. As of Friday, Haberman said 25 businesses/attractions had already signed up, with expectations of more joining the event in the coming week.

Haberman said the day will benefit businesses by giving them the knowledge necessary to answer one of the most common questions from tourists.

“There’s always room for improvement,” she said. “We’re well known for hospitality in Yankton. I’ve heard that from numerous people, but I think we can always do a better job. We never want there to be someone that comes to town that has a negative experience, so I don’t want anyone to be stumped when somebody comes to the area and says, ‘What is there to do here?’”

She added that making sure people have a good first experience in Yankton is critical to bringing in new and returning visitors alike.

“If someone comes here and they have a really unique experience, the odds are they’re going to go back and tell their friends and family about their experience,” she said. “That is more powerful than almost any kind of marketing that you can do — word of mouth.”

Though geared towards the area’s businesses and attractions, members of the public are welcome to attend. The event runs from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. May 8.

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