The New Jersey Tourism Industry Association awarded the Greater Wildwoods Tourism Improvement and Development Authority with the 2015 New Jersey Tourism Excellence Award at this year’s New Jersey Conference on Tourism.

“The Wildwoods are richly deserving of this prestigious award,” says Sharon Franz, president, NJTIA. “The Wildwoods’ innovative campaigns continue to draw millions of visitors, which, in turn, contributes greatly to the economic prosperity of the great state.”

The Signature Communications of Philadelphia, GWTIDA’s advertising agency, created the 2014 campaign “Can’t Stop This Feeling!” It was targeted to women between the ages of 25 and 54 and encouraged them to select the Wildwoods as their vacation destination.

“People are emotionally connected to the Wildwoods,” says John Siciliano, executive director, GWTIDA. “The ‘Can’t Stop This Feeling!” campaign captures that emotion and nostalgia. Whether you love the boardwalk, shopping, food, miles of free beaches or any other fun offerings in the Wildwoods, there is an emotional and generational connection unique to the Wildwoods that’s undeniable.”

The campaign stemmed from the 2012–2013 campaign that asked visitors what they love about the Wildwoods. It received a positive response, and the team decided to create something that showcased the love of the area.

“We received thousands of posts from actual visitors telling us what they love about the Wildwoods, and there was a consistent overall theme to their message—that the Wildwoods evoked a strong emotional connection and created lasting family memories for them,” says Ben Rose, GWTIDA, director of marketing and public relations. “It just seemed like a natural progression into this campaign that we felt truly resonated with our visitors.”

Back in 1801, Theodosia—daughter of future vice president Aaron Burr—and Joseph Alston left their home in Albany and headed to Niagara Falls with nine pack horses on what the Alstons called their “Bridal Tour.” That trip launched the reputation of the Falls as “the honeymoon capital of the world.”


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