Editors, Vineyard Gazette:

I have just returned from the Harbor View Hotel where I had the good fortune to attend the third in a series of presentations in the Creative Economy Speaker Series. Betsy Wall, the Director of the Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism (MOTT) and Rep. Cory Atkins of the Tourism, Arts and Culture Committee gave an excellent and informative presentation on the state’s tourism industry and how the Vineyard fits into the bigger regional, state and federal tourism puzzle.

This free presentation was well attended, but I was surprised to see few representatives of each town’s board of trade or civic associations. Where were the hotel and inn owners, the restaurant and shop owners? I think we as Vineyarders are missing the boat if we fail to recognize that it is the duty and responsibility of each Islander to help foster tourism. Tourism is what drives the Vineyard economy.

If you own a business that is frequented by tourists, I highly recommend that you consider attending the last two workshops in this Creative Economy series. On Oct. 22 hear about Best Practices. On Oct. 29 learn about how to Build Martha’s Vineyard’s Creative Economy with Helene Fruscio. Bring a friend. Did you know that every Island business can list their business and upcoming events at MASSvacation.com?

This is a great resource that all of us can utilize. Hope to see you next Tuesday at 11:30 at the Harbor View Hotel!

Gerry Moriarty