Tourism group wins Main Street award

By Emily Le Coz
Daily Journal
TUPELO – Elvis Presley has won many an accolade for the Tupelo Convention and Visitors Bureau this year.
Most recent among them was the Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association’s Award for Excellence, presented to the CVB at the association’s board meeting Tuesday afternoon.
The bureau’s work to re-create the King’s 1956 homecoming concert for this year’s Elvis Presley Festival also earned it the Southeast Tourism Association’s Shining Example Award and a place on the American Bus Association’s Top 100 International Events.
“I give my staff the credit,” said CVB director Linda Butler Johnson while accepting the award, a framed photograph of the reenactment concert next to a copy of the Governor’s proclamation about the event.
Because of the CVB’s involvement, this year’s Elvis festival offered a higher caliber entertainment and drew more people than ever in the event’s history, said Debbie Brangenberg, executive director of the association, which hosts the annual attraction.
“They brought it to a much higher level in terms of what we were able to present, and we really reached the Elvis world in a way we never had been able to before,” Brangenberg said. “The Elvis re-enactment was absolutely wonderful.”
Brangenberg, who was speaking at Benjamin’s On Main, said organizers are already working on plans to make next year’s festival even better.
“I didn’t know how to top this last year, but we’re stepping it up a notch in 2007,” she said. “We hope to have more details to announce by Elvis’ birthday” in January.

Contact Daily Journal city reporter Emily Le Coz at 678-1588 or emily.lecoz@djournal.com