I for one am looking forward to the day when I don’t hear the words “You’re muted.” Yes, working from home and attending meetings virtually does have its challenges.

I must admit though that webinars and other virtual learning opportunities have proven fruitful during the coronavirus pandemic. The Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau has leveraged its relationships with industry leaders to offer a webinar series featuring experts in the travel and tourism fields to its island partners.

The webinars are typically held Thursdays and have covered a variety of topics in this fast-changing landscape. Among them are, “How to Keep Your Business Relevant During COVID-19,” “National Travel Industry Updates and the Change in Travel Behavior,” “Looking Forward to Recovery with Advertising” and most recently, “Longwoods International COVID-19 Travel Sentiment” webinar.

“Like most managers, I’m looking for reputable sources of information that I can use to guide my decision-making in such unprecedented times,” said Jim Rosengren, executive director of the Galveston Island Railroad Museum. “I think the webinars you’ve put together at the CVB offer just that. The presenters are leaders in their fields, offer timely information and offer valuable insights with relevant analysis.”

The CVB team also stays in touch with its partners through regular electronic newsletters. These highlight the work of partners in the community, including the many who have helped others who are out of work for now. The newsletters also include helpful resources, statistics and projections from national, regional and state tourism industry agencies.

In addition to the webinar series and newsletters, the CVB works with Galveston.com to provide timely information about its partners to potential visitors. All of the CVB messaging is driven to the site to answer questions and help to promote the destination in accordance with the most recent health and safety guidelines. And, promoting partners is a chief priority for messaging on its social media platforms where followers number more than 400,000.

“We at The 1894 Grand Opera House are proud to work in partnership with Galveston’s CVB on many things, including marketing, event planning and visitor and financial forecasting,” said Maureen Patton, executive director at The Grand.

“As always, our CVB has stepped up in these very difficult times to provide much needed information and ongoing support for our various organizations,” Patton said. “They’re a beacon of leadership for all of us, and we welcome the various virtual meetings and e-blasts that guide us through these rough waters.”

The next webinar “Transition Planning to Address the Short-Term” by JLL Hotels & Hospitality Group will be at 9 a.m. Thursday. If you would like to participate, please send an email request to ccarnes@galvestoncvb.com. You can access the webinars at any time at galvestonparkboard.org under the COVID-19 Webinars and Resources heading.

Park board meetings are typically held at 1:30 p.m. on the fourth Tuesdays of the month at 601 23rd St.

Mary Beth Bassett is the public relations coordinator for the Galveston Island Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Park Board of Trustees.

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