Monograph: Cultural Tourism: Bridging America Through Partnerships in Arts, Tourism and Economic Development
Visitors come from around the world to New Orleans when they may know only one thing about the city - jazz. New York means Broadway. Santa Fe, N.M. equates with visual arts. When cities are able to define themselves so succinctly, they understand that their culture is truly what they have to sell. Herein lies the opportunistic marriage of culture and tourism. And like all partnerships, the relationship must include mutual respect, commitment and trust. Like a business partnership, it also requires entrepreneurial capabilities.
For the arts, cultural tourism can provide an opportunity for greater earned income. Cultural tourism programs are the catalyst for new audiences and dollars, helping artists and arts organizations to grow stronger in these days of declining federal grants and increased competition for dollars at foundation and corporate levels. For tourism, arts and culture are the expressions of a community's heart and soul. Together they form an image that sets the city apart and creates anticipation and excitement for the traveler. This is the raison d'etre why a convention group may select one city over another; why international travelers with limited time but so much to see, books your city as one of only a few on their tours.
Culture and tourism make strange bedfellows, at least at first. Tourism people talk numbers like room nights, occupancy rates and parking for buses. Arts people talk creative programming and event planning. But everyone knows that any successful enterprise is built on both. To build a long-lasting relationship, culture and tourism must join hands in collaboration, implementation and communication. (p. 1-2)
Americans for the Arts’ Monograph series featured in-depth issue papers on topics that were of the greatest interest to our members and arts professionals at the time. They often still serve as excellent resources for best practices and historic reference for today’s issues. Monographs were produced from 1993–2010. Monographs from 2001-2010 are available for downloadable in PDF format our online store at a nominal fee for nonmembers but free to members. All monographs from 1993-2000 are available for free download via the National Arts Administration and Policy Publications Database.