American Tourism Society Marks 20th Year: Works with NTA

The American Tourism Society (ATS) reports its Fall 2009 Annual Conference will take place October 26-28, in Heiligendamm, in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, in Germany. The event will celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall and mark the 20th anniversary of the founding of ATS.

“We felt it very appropriate for ATS, whose founding members did so much to pioneer tourism from the U.S. to Eastern Europe and the Baltic region, to use the occasion of our Fall 2009 Conference to mark the 20th Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall.  At the same time, by selecting Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, we are introducing ATS members to an area relatively unknown to many of us in North America,” said ATS president, Phil Otterson, who is also executive vice president external affairs, Tauck World Discovery.

“Meck Pomm,” as the region is often referred to by the locals, is located in the northeastern part of Germany on the Baltic Sea. Only two hours from Berlin, the same hotel and venue used for the G8 Summit in 2007 is being used for the ATS Fall Conference. Although most of its 10 million annual visitors come for the sea- side resorts and activities, it is also a region rich in history and culture. There are more than 2000 castles and manor houses.  Its port city of Rostock is a major cruise ship hub. Mecklenburg-Vorpommern mixes a very modern infrastructure with a rich cultural heritage dating back to medieval times, ATS said.

The newly formed ATS partnership with the National Tour Association (NTA) offers NTA members an opportunity to join ATS for a week of networking, educational and product development opportunities as well as the NTA Post-ATS Conference Product Development Tour. The tour departs Heiligendamm on Oct. 29 and ends in Berlin on Nov 1, 2009.

Lisa Simon, NTA president, said “This trip, a three night tour from Mecklenburg-Vorpommern to Berlin, will not only give the NTA and ATS participants an opportunity to further experience and learn about the rich culture the region, it will also focus on the events surrounding the 20 year Soviet occupation of eastern Germany, which culminated with the tearing down of the Berlin Wall 20 years ago. We are excited to celebrate this historic anniversary.” 


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