February Newsletter

Thank you everyone who participated in the Kansas Tourism campaign for Kansas Day.  We are continuing to see great results and will continue sharing those with you over the coming weeks.  Just in case you missed it, I decided that in lieu of my normal monthly column, I would share a Kansas Day OpEd piece written by Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce, David Toland.  Enjoy!


Kansas Day Teaches Us to Love Our ‘Home On The Range’

By David Toland

The roots of my love for Kansas Day were planted deep many years ago in Mrs. Garrett’s second-grade class at Jefferson Elementary School in Iola. The simple act of coloring my own version of the American bison or the Kansas seal and singing Kansas-themed songs planted a curiosity — and an affection – in me toward my home state. 

A fifth-grade trip to a pre-renovated Statehouse further grew my love for celebrating Kansas Day. While the bragging rights of making the climb to the top were impressive, the view from the dome was proof that the sky is the only limit for Kansans like myself.

Decades later, Kansas Day is still special to me.  The years, and my experiences exploring this state, have only deepened my pride in being a Kansan. And as an observer of what influences the decisions of residents and businesses, I’ve grown to appreciate the power Kansas Day holds in forming the Kansas identity in young hearts. 

As the Lieutenant Governor and the Secretary of Commerce, I regard Kansans as our most valuable state economic development tool. I love talking about the capable, hard-working and entrepreneurial spirit of our workforce. The challenge is in retaining that workforce in the state against other places competing for talent.  We are developing a toolkit of strategies to address this challenge, but the power of setting aside one day a year to celebrate Kansas is one that shouldn’t be ignored. 

If we appreciate the value of imparting Kansas pride to our state’s children and sharing our rich heritage and culture, there is a better chance they will stay here as adults.

That’s why we should make Kansas a big deal this Sunday, January 29. Plan a celebration in your own way with friends, family and neighbors. Share it on your social media channels. Talk about the history and importance of Kansas to our nation. Share your pride with the young people in your life. Visit a Kansas destination that you’ve always meant to explore.

That kind of action leaves an impression that lasts. I know because my parents and grandparents lived it, teaching me every day to appreciate Kansas communities and the beauty of our state. They seemed to know someone in every town we visited, a wonder to my young mind. 

In my travels across our state, it’s a joy to visit Kansas communities and occasionally make a connection with someone who knew one of my family members.

The influence parents and grandparents have on their own children is powerful – and long-lasting. If we display our pride for Kansas, the next generation will feel the same.

This January 29th, we’re celebrating Kansas’ birthday by highlighting our state song, Home on the Range.  Watch for Home on the Range celebrations from Kansas Tourism at TravelKS.com/KansasDay. Here you can share a special Kansas Day video on social media, post a salute to our Sunflower State, and join other Kansas artists by trying your hand at recording your very own version of Home on the Range. Kansas Day is a day of celebration, so I encourage you to make the most of it by sharing what makes your home so special. 

Together, I believe, the roots we plant each Kansas Day can bear a fruitful yield now and in the next decades as we keep Kansans home on the range. 

David Toland is a seventh-generation Kansan, the 52nd Lieutenant Governor of the State of Kansas, and Secretary of the Kansas Department of Commerce. 


Grant Opportunities

Attraction Development Grant (ADGP) - Applications for the Kansas Tourism Attraction Development Grant are now open and are due Friday, March 31st. You can view the guidelines and information here.

State Park Revitalization and Investment in Notable Tourism (SPRINT) - This program will distribute $30 million for investments in Kansas regional tourism assets and state parks. View the recorded the webinar from yesterday and guidelines for the grant application here.  There will be an additional FAQ webinar on February 15th at 2pm.

Historic Economic Asset Lifeline (HEAL) - Realizing the need to rehabilitate downtown buildings with funding that can be disbursed quickly and efficiently, the Kansas Department of Commerce has partnered with the Patterson Family Foundation to create the HEAL program. The spring 2023 HEAL round will open February 15 and close March 31. Learn more here.

Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission (KCAIC) - Initial applications for the Innovative Partnerships and Re-Imagined Spaces projects will be reviewed starting in early February. Following staff review, projects will be either given access to the full application or directed to apply in a different category. Full applications in all categories will be due Monday, March 13, 2023 for projects starting after July 1, 2023.  Grant materials, necessary forms, and general information is available here

Mural & Public Art - These programs are designed to utilize artists and arts organizations to increase community vibrancy and provide space for artistic expression and public engagement. Funding opportunities are available through both KCAIC and Office of Rural Prosperity. You can see details about each here

2024 Official Kansas Travel Guide

It's that time again! Would you like the ability to reach thousands of people about your destination or business for a mere $80? Be sure to purchase a listing in the 2024 Kansas Travel Guide. You can find details about how to purchase your listing here or contact Andrea Etzel.


  • EARLY BIRD – January – February 28
  • GENERAL – March 1 – March 31
  • INVOICES SENT – After April 1


  • EARLY BIRD - $80, Standard & $120, Highlighted
  • GENERAL - $100, Standard & $140, Highlighted

Don't forget if you are a DMO you get a free listing, but it still needs to be entered through the Extranet.

Updates You Should Know

There will be no February huddle.  Mark you calendars for the next huddle on Wednesday, March 8th at 1pm.

Please update your contact and email for our Agritourism Manager, Kelsey.  She got married in January and now goes by Kelsey Wendling.  Her email and other contacts for our office can be found here.

Come be part of the Kansas Tourism team! We have a full time position opening for a Fiscal and Grant Manager.  Check out all the details here.   

Kansas Tourism Regions


Have you connected with your local tourism marketing region yet? 

Kansas Tourism has made it a priority to market the state regionally as visitors respond well to this approach. In Kansas there are six tourism regions, and each region has an organization that represents their members. By being a part of your regional organization, you have access to additional marketing and advertising opportunities. Kansas Tourism depends heavily on these regional organizations to help direct our marketing efforts. If you are not sure what region you are in, or how to get in contact with them, reach out to Kelli Orender and she can help you get to the correct person.  
Education Resources


Articles & Research

  • 6 Travel Media Trends for 2023 
  • 7 Meeting Industry Trends to Watch in 2023
  • 2023 Content Calendar Template
  • Destination Marketing Trends for 2023
  • Megatrends - Defining Travel in 2023
  • Reaching the Next Generation of Travelers
  • The 5 Pillars of Experience Curation
Dates to Remember


  • Friday, Feb 3 - Governor's Council Mtg
  • Wednesday, Feb 8 - Destination Statehouse


  • Wed, March 8 - Virtual Huddle
  • Thurs, March 30 - Global Meetings Industry Day


  • Wednesday, Apr 12 - Virtual Huddle

For a full list of industry events click here.

We are continuously getting new and renewing Kansas Agritourism businesses that we'd love for you to explore and highlight in your own communities! For more information on the Kansas Agritourism Program, please contact Kelsey Wendling.

New & Renewing in January 2023

Bella Ren Fields Abilene
Burr-Oke Farm Wamego
Gasper Hunting Osborne
Pine Lake Farm Derby
Pinwheel Farm Lawrence
Stone Briar Farm De Soto
Stay Connected
Kansas - To The Stars