(CBS DETROIT)  – The snow is starting to fall, ski resorts are open and ready to welcome skiers to the slopes, and it’s time to rejoice in another season of exploring the winter playgrounds of Michigan. Pure Michigan is doing just that as it returns to the airwaves, just in time to encourage safe travel across the state during a critical time for the tourism industry.

The regional and in-state Pure Michigan winter advertising campaign will run in key markets through the end of February 2021 and is marking its return with a new ad spot, Still Pure, that lets travelers know that the best of Pure Michigan is waiting and through safe travel, offering a piece of normal during uncertain times.

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“It’s so exciting to see the Pure Michigan ad campaign back on the air in support of the winter travel season and continuing to create an incredible sense of pride all across the state,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “This year it’s more important than ever for people to travel local with proper precautions and support Michigan’s tourism and hospitality businesses, including restaurants, ski resorts and retailers, while safely enjoying Michigan’s great outdoors and destinations across the state. Remember, Michigander: wear a mask, practice safe social distancing, and wash your hands frequently. We will get through this together.”

The campaign will utilize broadcast and connected TV, online video and digital ads, and social media, as well as a prime-time TV to showcase Michigan’s winter wonderland. The winter TV commercials that will be played are Loud and Still Pure, showcasing the many outdoor activities that can be enjoyed in Michigan while also encouraging safe travel. The spots will be seen in markets including Fort Wayne, Toledo, Green Bay, Minneapolis, Detroit, Flint, Grand Rapids, and Traverse City.

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In addition to the advertising campaign, the Pure Michigan Winter landing page is available to provide visitors with the inspiration and information to plan the perfect winter getaway. Travelers can also order the Pure Michigan Fall/Winter Travel Guide or access the digital travel guide at michigan.org, which includes several articles intended to inspire winter travel.

The launch of the Pure Michigan campaign also coincides with the opening of many of Michigan’s ski resorts for the year. Travelers can check ahead to learn how to ski and snowboard while also traveling safely to resorts and ski areas across the state by visiting Ski Well, Be Well, put together by the National Ski Areas Association.

“Especially this year, during the pandemic, the Pure Michigan campaign is vitally important, and it’s here just in time for winter travel,” said MSIA President and Executive Director Mickey MacWilliams. “Michigan is tied with New York for the most ski areas in the country and we have been busy working collectively on plans to open safely for the season. Travel Michigan’s winter campaign has been a real boost in years past, reaching travelers from surrounding states and beyond. Many lodging properties across Michigan have faced an extremely tough year. Having the Pure Michigan campaign kick in now, just as the ski season begins, is such a welcomed relief for our industry.”

This year’s total winter advertising budget is $1,186,859 million and is the first campaign to launch since funding for Pure Michigan was restored as part of the FY21 budget signed into law by Governor Whitmer. The winter campaign will include 20 industry partners contributing nearly $500,000 as part of the digital advertising efforts starting January 1, 2021. In 2019, winter tourism generated $3.3 billion in traveler spending in Michigan. (Source: TravelUSA).

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“Michigan was made for winter, and this winter presents new opportunities to travel safely while enjoying all the outdoor activities Michigan has to offer,” said Dave Lorenz, Vice President of Travel Michigan, part of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “This campaign is designed to encourage travelers to safely get out and have a snow day, learn a new sport, and support the travel industry.”

Travelers and travel industry partners are being encouraged to use the hashtag #PureMichigan as they highlight winter offerings and adventures across Michigan. Michigan is home to more than 6,500 miles of snowmobile trails, 3,000 miles of cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails and is second in the nation for ski areas boasting everything from family-friendly bunny hills to the tallest vertical drop in the Midwest at Mt. Bohemia.

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In November, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation launched its “Support Local” campaign under the Pure Michigan banner, which urges Michiganders to shop, eat, and travel safely in their own neighborhoods and downtowns. As efforts continue to combat the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the campaign reminds Michiganders of the importance of supporting local businesses during the upcoming holidays and throughout the winter season.

As part of the Support Local campaign, the michigan.org website offers resources that help residents shop and eat local, including links to vibrant downtowns that are filled with local shops specializing in décor, fashion, pet toys, hardware and more. Around Michigan, independent bookstores overflow with page-turning stories and gifts. To refuel, shoppers can visit one of Michigan’s coffee shops and get a bag of beans to brew at home. From a gift card to local restaurants to shopping, the possibilities are endless.

Planning is also already underway on the Pure Michigan spring/summer campaign, which is slated to launch in March. Travel Michigan is anticipating pent up demand for leisure travel and outdoor recreation this summer, and will continue to position Michigan strongly for travelers within the region and beyond while also sharing a message of safe travel statewide.

Pure Michigan also continues to encourage businesses, visitors and local communities across the state to take the Pure Michigan Pledge, a promise to uphold local safety protocols and CDC travel guidelines to travel safely. To date, nearly 400 businesses and destinations in the state have taken the pledge.

About Michigan Economic Development Corporation

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy.  For more information on the MEDC and our initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org.  For Pure Michigan® tourism information, your trip begins at www.michigan.org.

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