Program for November 9, 2015: Rick Gosney - Rotary Foundation
Invocation:  Jessica Wittman
Rotary News and Happy News: Guests today are Ky Cochran and Roger Lande. Rotary will Ring Bells for the Salvation Army on December 8, 2015. Please call and sign up at 263-8272.  Mary and Mark Odell will share the competition of Rotary vs. Kiwanis!! Mary is happy Todd filled in for her last week. Mike Ruby told us Nigeria is now Polio free, leaving only Pakistan and Afghanistan with some cases. Scott Ingstad is very happy that the KC Royals won the World Series and the Hawkeyes are 8 and O.  Diana Gradert had a great trip to Paris and Normandy last week. Larry Hetzler is proud of the Cyclones!!  Judi Holdorf had a great vacation in California enjoying a wedding, seeing her son and enjoying Napa Valley!
Program: Sarah Lande introduced Joe Taylor from the Quad Cities Tourism Office as our speaker. Sarah spoke a bit about the National Geographic Geotourism Website and encouraged businesses and restaurants to join on the site. Many Muscatine sites are already on the site. It is a mechanism for cobranding us with the Mississippi River and National Geographic.  Joe spoke about the invisible industry of tourism.  Mississippi River tourism provides $1.45 billion annually in visitor expenditures in 10 counties along the river.  Muscatine County gets $80 million annually ranking 18th of 99 counties in Iowa.  Joe introduced us to several tourism groups including Eastern Iowa Tourism, Travel Mississippi River, Great River Road and suggested that tourism be viewed as a regional initiative.  In June of 2016, the Great Race will come to the Quad Cities, returning as an Antique Car Group, and Viking River Cruises is  coming in 2017 with a 7 day cruise from St.Louis to the Twin Cities.  The cruise should run between the 4th of July and the end of October. Ky Cochran, Muscatine Tourism Director said we were readying for that event!!