Caledonia, Minnesota  |  info@visitcaledonia.com

Caledonia, Minnesota  |  info@visitcaledonia.com

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Welcome to the Wild Turkey Capital of Minnesota!

Caledonia is a community of 3,000 people located where the land transitions from rolling hills to scenic bluffs and into the Mississippi River Valley. Majestic eagles soaring or sitting in the treetops are common as are deer and wild turkeys. Area streams offer some of the best trout fishing in the state.

Biking and hiking trails, Beaver Creek Valley State Park, Schech’s water powered mill, horse trails, snowmobile trails, boating, and bird watching are all activities that lure people to the area. In Caledonia, shop our unique stores and restaurants, check out historic downtown, and visit the Houston County Historical Society museum complex.

Enjoy winter in the 
Heart of Quilt Country!

Come to Caledonia– the Heart of Quilt Country– to enjoy the barn quilts that grace southeast Minnesota.

“Quilting the Countryside,” began as a creative barn improvement project for a local family highlighting their 1928 barn. An 8x8 foot square of plywood was painted in lively colors in a traditional quilt pattern and hung on their rural barn. The idea quickly caught on and 60 beautifully painted wooden quilts now grace rural barns throughout Houston County celebrating our valued agricultural heritage.

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Caledonia Area Convention and Tourism Bureau Celebrates

National Travel and Tourism Week, May 3-11

 

The first full week of May is annually recognized as National Travel and Tourism Week, a tradition first celebrated in 1984, established by a Congressional joint resolution passed in 1983.   It is celebrated annually to share the economic impact of the Leisure and Hospitality industry.  Tourism contributes to the success of an area by creating jobs, fostering ties, and encouraging business development.

 

In a 2012 Explore Minnesota initiative the economic impact of tourism was measured by county.  According to the study in Houston County alone the gross sales of leisure and hospitality was $9,754,403.  The sales tax was $694,858 and the private sector employment in the industry was 275*.  The Leisure and Hospitality industry consists of Accommodations; Food Services and Drinking Places; and Arts, Entertainment and Recreation.

 

The Caledonia Area Convention and Tourism Bureau, Inc. formed in 2009 for the promotion of tourism in the Caledonia area.  It is governed by a volunteer board of directors.  Current members include Karen Rice Hagerott, Bonnie Robley, Pam DeMorett, Mike Werner, Kellie Meyer, and Eric Cordes. 

 

A 501 c (6) organization, the CACTB is funded through fundraising efforts, project sponsorships, matching grants, and lodging tax dollars from the City of Caledonia and Caledonia Township.  Regarding the CACTB mission Rice Hagerott,  Board President, states, “Our mission is to expand the area’s travel and tourism industry and promote new tourism venues.  We hope by our efforts to generate economic growth for the community by attracting overnight visitors, tour groups and conventions and  encouraging these visitors to visit local, historical, cultural and recreational sites.”  Since their inception the Bureau has initiated a number of efforts to achieve their goals. 

 

These efforts include the barn quilt tour, various marketing projects including brochures, print advertisements, trade show participation, and E-advertising.    Visitors searching for Caledonia on the web will find an updated website at www.visitcaledonia.com that provides a wide variety of information about activities, events, and local services.  Dollars are dedicated each year to google for the purpose of having this tourism site load near the top of the search.  At local visitor centers and retailers you’ll find tourism materials including a historic walking tour of downtown Caledonia, barn quilt maps, and general information about Caledonia.  Board members frequently carry the materials in their vehicles and distribute as they travel  inside and outside the area. 

 

Most recently they have adopted a Facebook page and welcome both friends and shared content.  The Bureau has implemented a south eastern MN/south western WI and NE Iowa marketing effort including print advertisements in trade magazines and visitor guides.  They also have a dedicated email and phone line for informational inquiries.  Annually they submit for additional grant dollars from Explore MN  which assist in these marketing opportunities.

 

For their efforts the CACTB was the recipient of the 2011 Marketing Award of Merit from Explore Minnesota Tourism.    The all volunteer Bureau meets monthly or as often as needed.  As they get ready to enter their 5th year of operation Rice Hagerott shares they are most proud of the efforts of local businesses to attract and welcome visitors.   “Our guests share so many good experiences in their communications with the CACTB and they are excited to return again.” 

 

Their primary efforts  for 2014 involve the North Park project, Barn Quilt auction, and marketing campaigns.  They welcome and encourage community input and ideas.  You can reach the board by writing to CACTB, PO Box 425  Caledonia, MN 55921, E-mail: info@visitcaledonia.com or phone  (507) 725-TOUR.

 

Sources: Minnesota Department of Revenue; Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development