Chinatown to Launch Tourism Campaign
From World Journal
July 21, 2004

In an effort to revitalize the tourism industry in Chinatown, “Explore Chinatown”, an umbrella group, announced a series of events on July 20th.

The ambitious campaign includes putting up banners in Chinatown in August as a promotion for the upcoming Lantern Festival. During the Republican Convention’s “Culture Day”, scheduled for September 1, party representatives will be invited to visit Chinatown. Another ad campaign focusing on subway stations in all five boroughs will also be released in November and December.

“Explore Chinatown” was established early this year by the 911 Foundation and Lower Manhattan Development Corp., which each contributed $1 million. The members include NYC & Company, Tien Tung Advertising, Shaw Hua Public Relations and the Asian American Women’s Commerce Association. Its purpose is to promote Chinatown and make it a must-visit destination for every tourist who comes to New York City.

The announcement is the second wave of efforts following the release of the group’s website and posters.

According to Wen-Fung Huang, project manager of the campaign, more than 100,000 copies of pamphlets and maps were printed and distributed to 150 hotels and 15 information centers all over the city. He added that they are still updating the website and welcome Chinatown businesses to register with them to take advantage of the free promotion.

For the upcoming Republican Convention, scheduled to begin in late August, 57 stores and restaurants have joined in the “Come Early, Stay Late” campaign and will offer 20 percent discount to all party representatives.

Huang said that the Republican Convention’s organizing committee have already assigned September 1 as “Culture Day” and will include events hosted by “Explore Chinatown” and Lin Tze Hsu Foundation in their official schedule.

Another ambitious project is the subway campaign scheduled for November and December. The project will display advertisement in 40 percent of the subway cars and provide maps and brochures in subway and bus stations. Anyone with a MetroCard can enjoy discounts when shopping in some Chinatown stores.

Linda J. Ayares, a senior vice president at Shaw Hua Public Relations, said that “Explore Chinatown” is aiming at “promoting what Chinatown already has, not creating new things”.

Many travel agencies do not include Chinatown in their tour because there are no travel guides or maps about Chinatown’s attractions, said Ayares. “They want information that can be used right away. Many small businesses in Chinatown do not have the resources to do that. What ‘Explore Chinatown’ wants to do is to create a nice package for them”.

Ayares also added that they are hoping to bring in major corporations to sponsor their campaign to revive Chinatown’s economy.

For more information, visit www.ExploreChinatown.com or call (212)484-1263 or (212)653-8638.

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Translated from Chinese by Larry Tung.

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