Visit Colorado Springs recognized tourism industry stars at a 1920s speakeasy-themed celebration Thursday night at The Antlers, A Wyndham Hotel.
Nearly 300 guests, many in Roaring ’20s attire, enjoyed themed drinks, concocted by nine local craft beverage companies, and a mystery-solving scavenger hunt at the event, which honored 16 industry leaders, who were recognized for their guidance, customer service, collaboration and community involvement. Outgoing Visit COS board members and staff who achieved milestones this year also were recognized
Colorado Springs Mayor John Suthers highlighted capital campaigns for the Pikes Peak Summit House and Springs Rescue Mission, and challenged Visit COS partners to hold fundraising events and donate to one or both projects.
Speakers also included Visit COS Board Chair Barry Brown and President and CEO Doug Price.
Brown said 23 million business, leisure and group visitors traveled to the Pikes Peak region in 2017.
Brown also spoke about the organization’s new name. In September, the Colorado Springs Convention & Visitors Bureau began doing business as Visit Colorado Springs, following approval by the board.
Brown shared the new Colorado Tourism Office’s state map, which highlights the rebranded regional boundaries. The region that includes Colorado Springs has shifted from South Central to a more accurate and inspirational moniker, Pikes Peak Wonders.
Price presented acknowledgements and Industry awards to the following outstanding individuals:
Outgoing VCOS Board Members
Andy Neinas, Echo Canyon River Expeditions — six years of service on the Visit COS board
Peter Udall, The Navigators – six years of service on the board
DeAnne McCann, Executive Director, El Paso County Economic Development Division — four years of service on the board
Floy Kennedy, Director of Travel Industry Sales — 10 years with Visit COS
Chelsy Offutt, Director of Communications — 10 years with VCOS
Tourism Industry Awards
Hospitality Customer Service Award: KumSuk Cano, The Broadmoor
Tourism Customer Service Award: Jake Mestas, Certified Folder Display Service
Tourism Leadership Award: Kathy Vinson, Space Foundation
Most Responsive to Leads — Entertainment: Don Moon, The Bully Moose Pulpit
Most Responsive to Leads — Event Venues: Spruce Mountain Events
Most Responsive to Leads — Restaurants with Meeting Space: tie, The Warehouse Restaurant and Gallery, and Phantom Canyon Brewing Company
Most Responsive to Leads — Transportation: Hermes Chauffeured Services
Best Collaborator with Visit Colorado Springs: Adventures Out West
Most Innovative New Business Concept: SCP Hotel Colorado Springs
Most Innovative Remodel: DoubleTree by Hilton Colorado Springs
Visitor Services Award: Mecca Motel
Volunteer Support Award: City of Cripple Creek
Women of Worth (W.O.W.) Awards:
Spirit of Tourism Award: Becky Leinweber, Angler’s Covey and Pikes Peak Outdoor Recreation Alliance
Spirit of Caring Award: Sherry Von Riesen. Colorado Springs Olympic Training Center
Quintessential Woman of the Century: Mary Lou Murphy