Coming Together to Expand Montana’s Tourism Story


Hosted by the Montana Office of Tourism, the workshops will:

Provide an overview of what the Office of Tourism (MTOT) is doing to support tourism in the state and in your area.

Provide ideas on how to increase tourism – for both the region and for individual businesses.

Facilitate a brainstorming session to discuss how Southeast Montana can attract more of the 10+ million visitors that come to Montana each year.

Provide hands-on training for harnessing the power of social media in marketing outreach efforts, especially as it pertains to the tourism industry, and tips for navigating and

In addition, the Montana Office of Tourism will be holding random drawings at the workshop. For every 20 attendees, the state will be giving away one complimentary registration and one room for two nights at the 2014 Montana Governor’s Conference on Tourism and Recreation.One person will also be selected to receive an iPad Mini to help utilize tools and tips presented at the workshop.**Must be present to win.

Thursday, February 20th
Crowne Plaza Hotel, Billings

9:00 a.m – NOON: Marketing Montana & MTOT Branding

NOON – 1:00 p.m: Lunch courtesy of MTOT

1:00 p.m. – 1:45 p.m: Montana Main Street Program

2:00 p.m. – 2:45 p.m: Social Media Tips

3:00 p.m. – 3:45 p.m: Navigating

RSVP Required by Friday,
February 14th.

For more information, contact Julie Walker at or 406.841.2887.

Hotel Watch in Billings!

We will strive to keep you up to date via our research into the status of new hotels, being built or rumored, in the Billings/Yellowstone County area. Resources are Billings Gazette, Big Sky EDA, YCLA member properties, and Cynroc photography. There continue to be 8-11 new hotels rumored, planned, or in construction. Please check the YCLA website for updates between newsletters.

  • Homewood Suites – photo Jan. 28, 2014
    • Status:  Framing, windows, and pillars moving rapidly – looking good to meet schedule.
    • General: a Hilton extended-stay hotel, 4-story, rooms with full kitchens, breakfast and light dinners served with beer or wine Monday through Thursday.  Erck Hotel group of Missoula.
    • Location: Between the Hampton Inn & Suites and The Big Horn Resort on Ember Lane off Zoo Drive and Interstate 90.
    • Completion: Estimated June 2014 at a cost of $13-14 million
    • Rates: Winter room rates will be approximately $130 and rise to $150 in summer.

  • Holiday Inn Express – photo Jan. 28, 2014
    • Status: Concrete elevator shafts, stairwells, walls, and window frames on first floor.
    • General: No specific info at this time. Sign shows 5-story hotel.
    • Location: Across from the Hampton Inn & Suites in front of the Rib & Chop House on Ember Lane off Zoo Drive and Interstate 90.
    • Completion: sign states 2014
    • Rates: $131 per night (per website, other HIExpress in Billings)

  • LaQuinta – photo Jan. 28, 2014
    • Status: Tremendous progress, concrete, wood framing, first and second floors.
    • General: Four story, 85 rooms. Their “new urban design – stucco and stone. A Midwest Ventures Kelly Inn property
    • Location: Frontage Road next to Cracker Barrel Restaurant
    • Completion: No date known at this time, but progress is rapid.
    • Rates: No info at this time.

  • Ledgestone – photo Jan. 28, 2014
    • Status: Exterior finishing well along
    • General: Three-story, 80-room. George Swift, owns Aspen Hotels and Western Steel based in suburban Seattle, invested $8 million for hotel, land, and furnishings. He has built more than 50 hotels in 8 states. Rumored possible extended-stay.
    • Location: Just off South Billings Blvd, next to Holiday Gas Station
    • Completion: No date known at this time, but from the looks of the progress, it could be early spring.
    • Rates: No info at this time.

YCLA February Members’ Meeting

YCLA Meeting –YCLA Meeting – Wednesday, February 19th, 2014, 12:30pm Billings Hotel & Convention Center. The cost of lunch is $15.

Guest Speaker:

Events to Plan On

MetraPark – Great events likely to bring out-of-town guests to Billings!

• All Class State High School Wrestling – Feb 14 – 15
• The Band Perry in Concert – Feb 16
• Eastern A Divisional Boys & Girls Basketball – Feb 27 – Mar 1
• Harlem Globetrotters 2014 “Fans Rule” World Tour – Mar 2
• Southern B Divisional Boys & Girls Basketball – Mar 6 – 8
• State AA Boys & Girls Basketball – Mar 13-15
• Spotlight Dance Cup – Mar 14-16
• 50th Salespersons’ Breakfast – Mar 20
• Montana Open Wrestling – Mar 29-30
• Montana Energy 2014 Tradeshow & Convention – Apr 2 – 3
• PBR Built Ford Tough Invitational – Apr 11-13
• Billings Market Association (Private Show) – Apr 25 – 27
• Energy Exposition – June 25 – 26
• Montana Fair – Aug 8-16
• Billings Market Association (Private Show) – Sept 19 – 21

Events coming to Billings from your CVB/TBID!

Alex Tyson has provided a full detail of the outstanding work her staff has done in booking events for Billings. Please click here to view 3 pages that describe upcoming events – dates, room nights, and more.

Also, the full report can always be found on this page of the VisitBillings website