New Website, Experience Guide Share Stories of the Community
Visit Champaign County unveiled an all new website at visitchampaigncounty.org, featuring stories to engage residents and visitors. Together with the rebranded Experience Guide, these resources are educating individuals on the Outside of Ordinary experiences, individuals, and attractions available in the greater Champaign County area.
The new Greater Champaign County Area Experience Guide, formerly the Visitors Guide, , launched in early August, offers 72-pages of content on agricultural activities, our award-winning culinary scene, the thriving arts & culture community, live music, family-friendly activities, shopping, and must-stop spots on campus.
“This guide is our centerpiece, and continues to grow in content thanks to the many small businesses, attractions and individuals that make up our vibrant community,” explains Terri Reifsteck, Vice President of Marketing. “We wanted to make it clear that this guide is for residents and visitors alike. No matter how long you have been in this community, there is always something new to learn.”
Since the guide was released, over 11,000 of the 70,000 printed, have been distributed throughout the University of Illinois campus, area hotels and local businesses, as well as to tourist information centers in Illinois, as well as to the many requests received by email and phone.
In conjunction, the destination management organization revamped their website to put stories ahead of listings. “People can find out what’s available in a community from any number of websites and apps. We wanted to differentiate ourselves by showcasing the experience first,” states Reifsteck.
With a weekly focus on “Living Outside of Ordinary,” Visit Champaign County offers seven ideas each week to discover something new and break routines. The Game Day section will focus on activities for Fighting Illini fans and visiting team fans, to discover before and after the football game.
A comprehensive calendar of events highlights community events and festivals open to the public throughout Champaign County, Monticello, Tuscola, and Arthur. Event organizers and businesses are encouraged to submit their event to be included. “This page is consistently our most viewed section of the website, so we added a functionality right on the homepage to discover what’s happening over the upcoming weekend, the next seven days, or a custom date range.”
Finally, the new site makes it easier for planners and recruiters to get information to bring business to the community. Whether it’s a bride and groom looking for unique wedding venues, or a meeting planner interested in hosting a conference in the community, the information needed is at their fingertips.
The Experience Guide is free and can be found at the Welcome Center at 17 E. Taylor St., Champaign, or at Market Place Mall, Illinois Terminal and Willard Airport. Guides are also available by request and are available to area businesses.