LINCOLN, Neb. (October 30, 2019) – This summer, travelers celebrated the Nebraska Passport Program’s 10th anniversary by touring the state and collecting stamps in record breaking numbers. This year, 909 participants submitted Passports with all 70 stops stamped, versus 769 in 2018 and 469 in 2017. These “Passport Champions” hail from Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oregon and Washington.
“Over the 2019 Passport season, I heard so many wonderful stories from our participants. Ranging from someone who takes their 98-year-old grandma around Nebraska every year to how a young boy begs his mom to take him back to Springfield Drug because he loved their milkshakes so much,” said Madison Schlake, Passport Program Coordinator. “Almost every day I was flooded with stories of family, friendship and genuine love for our beautiful state. Our “Passporters” are what makes this program so successful.”
2019 Nebraska Passport Statistics:
- From submitted Passports, 154,755 total stamps were collected.
- Participants included residents from 448 Nebraska communities and 37 states.
- Passport participants ranged in age from 3-months-old to 98-years-old.
- Participants submitted over 600 stories of their travels on nebraskapassport.com.
- There were 22.5% more accounts on the Nebraska Passport app in 2019 than 2018.
“I’m not a native Nebraskan, so I’ve been able to use the Passport Program to help me explore the state in the three years that I’ve been here. This year I made it to 51 stops!” said John Ricks, Nebraska Tourism Commission executive director. “This program has continued to grow and every year it’s exciting to see how many people in Nebraska are exploring the state beyond their backyard.”
In 2017, the Nebraska Passport program generated nearly $6 million in travel spending throughout the state and $469,500 in state and local tax revenue, according to a study done by Dean Runyan & Associates.
This year’s grand prize drawings were an Omaha Steaks Butcher’s Share Quarter of Beef with a free chest freezer and $300 in Nebraska Lottery vouchers. Additional drawings were done for a variety of items provided by the 2019 passport stops that are listed on http://nebraskapassport.com/
Travelers who visited participating locations and collected stamps could also earn a 10th anniversary keepsake item, Visit Nebraska calendar, Baker’s Candies gift box, Passport Champion t-shirt and $100 in Nebraska Lottery vouchers.
Be a 2020 Nebraska Passport Stop
Not only does the Nebraska Passport program benefit travelers through helping them create life-long memories, the program greatly benefits the 70 chosen Passport stops through increased traffic, sales and awareness.
Applications are now being accepted for Nebraska Tourism’s 2020 Passport program. Any Nebraska destination is welcome to apply to become a Passport stop. Past stops have included museums, restaurants, outdoor adventures, retail stores, etc.
To complete the 2020 Passport online application, as well as to view information about Passport stop requirements, how the program benefits Passport stops, and details about the application process, go to: http://nebraskapassport.com/