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February 2016

Issue 162 (02.18.16)


Tourney Time

The winter series of WIAA tournaments kicks off tomorrow—and you’re invited to participate in the fanfare, from rolling out our welcome program to getting tickets to see the athletes in action!

The following tournaments will be in town in February and March:

WIAA Boys’ Swimming & Diving State Tournament (February 19-20)
WIAA Individual Wrestling State Tournament (February 25-27)
WIAA Boys Hockey State Tournament (March 3-5)
WIAA Team Wrestling State Tournament (March 4-5)
WIAA Girls Hockey Championships (March 4-5)
WIAA Boys State Basketball Championships (March 17-19)

Mid-March marks the 101st year of the Boys State Basketball Championships and, once again, you can extend a warm welcome to the players and their families by participating in the following activities:

  1. Keep an eye on the Monday Morning Coffee Break e-newsletter and download a Welcome Poster to display in your window. It’s just one way to roll out the red carpet for schools around the state that will be visiting the Championship Capital.
  2. Decorate your lobby, foyer or host stand to welcome teams. Stay tuned to find out who will be playing, which will give you guidance on team colors, mascots and more.
  3. Create specials surrounding WIAA Tournament timing. Is there a unique menu item you can offer to loyal patrons and new guests who will think of your business as their go-to on game day?
  4. Request Fan Guides that you can share when visitors walk in (you’ll recognize them because they’ll be decked out in school spirit from head to toe!).
  5. If you’ve got two floors or more, you can also order elevator stickers and welcome guests in a big way.
  6. Buy tickets to the tournament and see the athletes in action at the Kohl Center! Tickets are only $10 (ages 2 and under are free), and these games make for great family fun or gifts for staff or clients.
  7. Keep an eye on the WIAA web site for additional details about the winter tournament series.

If you have any questions about this year’s welcome program, contact Kate Dale.


Featured Partner: Studio, You Paint It Pottery

Studio, You Paint It Pottery is more than a place to take the kids for an afternoon of arts and crafts. It’s Madison’s original interactive studio experience where artists of all ages can go to get creative!

Painting pottery is a proven technique for promoting relaxation and fun. So seven days a week, this studio creates a space where walk-ins are always welcome. “Our goal is to create a safe and stress-free place for people to enjoy,” says Tracy Bartowiak, owner of Studio You. “So in addition to our regular hours, we have been happy to open early or keep the studio open later by appointment. We also host private parties for every occasion, from birthday parties to boy scout outings to baby showers.”

The concept at Studio You is simple: pick out a piece of pottery or a canvas, paint it, and pick it up a week later—glazed, fired and ready to enjoy. But the possibilities are endless, from colorful coffee mugs to “wow” wall art to gifts that last a lifetime. “For me, it’s so rewarding to see the range of ideas and implementation,” says Bartowiak. “And everything is so different because of the diversity of our clients: moms entertaining toddlers, couples on a date night or employees at a corporate outing.”

In addition to local clients, Studio You enjoys welcoming visitors to Madison’s west side. “Because we are partners of the GMCVB, we can count on visitors calling to say they saw us on their web site and to make an appointment at our studio,” says Bartowiak. “The GMCVB is proactive in bringing business to the Madison area and, of course, that greatly impacts Studio You. The fact that we ship our finished pieces also makes it easy for visitors to participate.”

Studio You is open 11-5 on Sundays and Mondays, 11-7 Tuesdays through Thursdays and 11-6 on Fridays and Saturdays. Drop by the studio at 6670 Odana Road or make an appointment by calling 608.833.1393.  


Warm Welcome & Major Milestones

We're pleased to welcome the following new partners:


AC Hotel Madison
1 N. Webster St.
Madison, WI 53703
OPENING IN 2017: Connect to the city in a new way at AC Hotel Madison. Thoughtful service and a modern mindset define us. New in 2017, each element of our space has been carefully tailored to maximize the fun of travel and achieve harmony as you arrive at AC Hotel Madison.

Cambridge Winery
700 Kenseth Way
Cambridge, WI 53523
Cambridge Winery produces high quality, boutique wines and offers unique hospitality facilities to make your event special and memorable. Cambridge Winery has two locations to serve you: our Cambridge Event Center and Tasting Room, and our Madison Tasting Room.​

Clean Lakes Alliance
150 E. Gilman Street, Ste. 2600
Madison, WI 53703
Clean Lakes Alliance strives to continue building a community of people, businesses, organizations, & government agencies dedicated to improving & protecting water quality in the Yahara River Watershed.

Madison Area
One of the world’s leading full-service online travel brands helping travelers plan and book travel! Expedia has the widest selection of vacation packages, flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises and in-destination activities, attractions and services.

Holiday Inn Express & Suites Madison
5150 High Crossing Blvd
Madison, WI 53718
OPENING IN 2016: Welcome to Madison's newest hotel! The Holiday Inn Express & Suites Madison is located on the east side, close to East Towne Mall, area restaurants and Sun Prairie. The hotel offers a free HOT Breakfast buffet, indoor pool, state of the art Fitness Center, free WIFI & free underground parking.

HopCat Madison
222 W. Gorham St.
Madison, WI 53703
HopCat Madison, Wisconsin's largest craft beer bar, offers a private event space that seats up to 100 people and features a full bar, big screen TV's, surround sound, projection screen, wheel-chair access, private restrooms, and much more!

Noah’s Event Venue
5020 American Family Drive
Madison, WI 53718
Tollfree: 844 NOAHS EV
NOAH’S is an upscale event venue for weddings, corporate events and special occasions. NOAH’S is the industry leader when it comes to providing unparalleled customer service.

Outlets at the Dells
210 N. Gasser Rd., Ste. 105
Baraboo, WI 53913
Shop Outlets at The Dells℠ and save 30-70% off retail prices everyday on favorite brands such as Nike, Express Factory Outlet, Under Armour, Disney Outlet and more! Conveniently located on I90-94, exit 92. A world class outlet experience at outlet prices. Shop Outlets at the Dells℠ today!


Congratulations to this GMCVB partner celebrating a key milestone:


Hilton Madison Monona Terrace is celebrating 15 years on the shimmering shores of Lake Monona! In addition to being adjacent to the Monona Terrace® Community and Convention Center, this hotel boasts spectacular views of the city and surrounding lakes, and includes a fitness center, pool and the Capitol ChopHouse restaurant.




Partners in the Press

We love to celebrate when we see our partners in the press! Check out these recent articles highlighting how successful our partners are at making our destination so desirable:

Best Travel Deals from Around the Globe (The Washington Post)
Partners mentioned:
Food Fight Restaurant Group, Graduate Madison, HotelRED

Madison Serves Up a Large Portion of F&B Excitement (Meetings Today)
Partners mentioned: Ale Asylum, Dane County Farmers' Market, Madison EatsMadison Food Explorers, The Coopers TavernThe Old Fashioned Tavern & Restaurant, Wisconsin Brewing Company, Wollersheim Winery & Distillery 

Valentine's Day Travel Ideas in Wisconsin (Wausau Daily Herald)
Partners mentioned: Graduate Madison, HotelRED, Madison Concourse Hotel, The Edgewater

Click here to view more of our recent rankings.