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*Tour120 is a year-long program open to historic sites in all 120 Kentucky counties
*Tour120 launches May 18-19 during National Historic Preservation Month
*Tour120 participants benefit from ongoing promotions and brand marketing for historic sites
Preservation Kentucky’s Tour120 is an exciting new statewide heritage tourism program designed to raise awareness of the importance of historic preservation to Kentucky’s communities, and raise funds to help the nonprofits that preserve, manage and showcase them. The program launches on Saturday-Sunday, May 18-19, 2019, during National Historic Preservation Month, with tours of historic commercial, residential and public buildings on the same days throughout the state to make a large impact on the public and provide a cohesive branding, advertising and promotional opportunity for the host committees that participate.
The Tour120 launch concept is simple: With our Host Sites’ participation, Preservation Kentucky will promote historic building tours on the same weekend this May in as many of the Commonwealth’s 120 counties as possible. The success of the Tour120 launch is our Host Sites’ participation in showcasing historic homes, commercial buildings and other historic places during the May 18-19 weekend which are usually closed to the public.
Tour120 Program concept is uniquely for historic sites: Kentucky’s historic buildings and landscapes are our greatest amenities and define our sense of place, enhancing our downtowns, Main Streets, neighborhoods, rural and crossroads communities, and contributing to economic development and tourism efforts statewide. The keepers of many of these special places, however – cities, counties, nonprofits, museums and attractions – are challenged with a common problem: striking a balance between fundraising to carry out our mission and actually carrying out our mission.
The Tour120 program is a year-long, year-round campaign designed to attract new visitors – and potentially new residents – and increase tourism and economic development dollars in cities across the state.
Historic Preservation and Tourism are an important intersection: The positive economic and social impact of cultural heritage tourism cannot be overstated. This is especially true for a state like Kentucky, where iconic images have gained international attention and attracted visitors from all over the world. And while bourbon, horses and fried chicken are among our most popular icons, one can argue that it’s our historic architecture that gives us our strong sense of place.
Tour120 is a wonderful way to showcase our historic buildings and sites: We believe the unified branding will appeal to local sites, spark interest in all age groups, and get folks out into their own and neighboring communities to explore the built environment that tells our story.