LTVA column: Tahoe South continues full speed into summer with national media exposure (opinion) | TahoeDailyTribune.com

LTVA column: Tahoe South continues full speed into summer with national media exposure (opinion)

Carol Chaplin
Guest Column

Carol Chaplin

The transition to summer brings new opportunities and once again South Lake Tahoe will be front and center a national stage in more ways than one.

The Amgen Tour of California returns May 18 and will reinforce Lake Tahoe's appeal as one of the country's top cycling destinations with televised coverage on NBC and NBCSN. It will be one of the toughest courses in race history for the women's Stage 2 race and men's Stage 6 finish.

More than 200 world class athletes and Olympians will climb, descend and break away along steep and winding stretches of the Sierra, showcasing Tahoe's spectacular setting to a national audience. Tahoe will present another Amgen Tour of California first: both the women's and men's stages will finish at Heavenly Mountain Resort's California Base Lodge with the men trailing the women by approximately 45 minutes.

Rolling road closures will be in effect throughout South Shore with more information at http://www.tahoesouth.com/amgen.

The 29th annual American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament returns, July 10-15 with live network television coverage on NBC and NBCSN plus a day on the Golf Channel. It highlights many of the area's attractions: spectacular beauty, family activities, outdoor and indoor recreation, all while raising funds for nonprofits.

South Shore is center stage for 88 entertainers, active/retired NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB players/coaches competing for a $600,000 purse, with $125,000 to the winner. Participants will be announced soon — get ready some big names. The 54-hole competition at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course, home since the 1990 inaugural tournament, has donated more than $5 million to charity.

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With the LTVA's significant contribution to the tournament as the destination sponsor, the community experiences direct economic impact exceeding $10-$12 million. Visit americancenturychampionship.com for more information.

Summer is setting the stage for headliner concerts including Florence and the Machine, Chris Stapleton, Janet Jackson, Luke Bryan, Dave Matthews Band, Ice Cube, Everclear, Marcy Playground, Papa Roach and more. The LTVA's summer marketing efforts supports Harveys Outdoor Concert Series, helping to facilitate long-lead bookings, which are trending strong as we approach our busy season.

To build future interest in the destination, just last month South Shore hosted the Mountain Travel Symposium. The largest and longest-running annual gathering of mountain travel professionals in the world attracted more than 1,100 representatives from 35+ countries to network, build business, and establish relationships for a stronger mountain community.

LTVA, Heavenly Mountain Resort, along with hotel partners Harrah's Lake Tahoe and Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel welcomed the event.

South Lake Tahoe was the center for romance during ABC's hit reality TV show The Bachelor. The 2-hour episode during the 22nd season featured Arie Luyendyk Jr. The episode showcased stunning views of the destination and promoted area lodging, dining and entertainment leading to immediate bookings and reservations at each, with extensive social media outreach complementing the televised coverage.

Featured stops included Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe; Buckingham Luxury Vacation Rentals, Lodge at Edgewood Tahoe; parasailing courtesy of Aramark Lake Tahoe Cruises; horseback riding at Camp Richardson Corral followed by dinner at Valhalla Tahoe; group date nature challenge at Hideout Lodge, and the rose ceremony at Tahoe South Vacation Rentals.

For a behind the scenes look and interviews with hosts regarding results of participation abc.go.com/.

Network TV meteorologists from major markets throughout the U.S. broadcast from Heavenly Mountain Resort during an opportune window of fresh snow in late January during the 23rd installment of Operation Sierra Storm. Scenes of winter at Lake Tahoe from the top of the tram at Heavenly reached an audience of 123 million through coverage on CNN, The Weather Channel, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Chicago, Denver, Philadelphia, Sacramento, San Jose, Santa Barbara, Reno, and via print through the Washington Post and Associated Press, with an earned publicity value of $2.75 million.

Visit http://www.osstahoe.com for more information.

Additional international exposure for the destination occurred last summer when "Modern Family," ABC's Emmy Award-winning hit TV comedy series, filmed its season premiere at Lake Tahoe. Now in its ninth season, the television mockumentary sitcom follows the lives of an extended family living in suburban Los Angeles.

During the episode characters hiked along Rubicon Trail, cliff jumped near DL Bliss, explored Emerald Bay through various watercrafts which departed from Camp Richardson Resort. In addition to the television exposure, stars from the show were also active on social media, reaching millions of followers with their posts about the beauty of the destination.

The Tahoe accolades keep coming! Plaudits from industry experts and media organizations have recognized Lake Tahoe as a top travel destination for its breathtaking scenery, recreation, attractions and amenities. Recent mentions just this year include: "Best Vacation Spot for Extreme Winter Sports" (CBS); "20 Best Places to go in 2018" (Time Magazine); "10 most scenic ski resorts in the world" (USA Today) and "Americans favorite destination" (Expedia) – adding to 50+ other honors over the years.

Stay tuned as the LTVA confirms additional opportunities for South Shore recognition in national media. The area's singular combination of timeless beauty, its appeal as an outdoor recreational mecca and for its 24-hour indoor entertainment and amenities, keep us among the most memorable and desirable destinations in the country.

Carol Chaplin is the CEO and president of the Lake Tahoe Visitors Authority.