Green Bay Packers Hall of Famer Donald Driver Brings Trademark Smile to New Commercial

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wisconsin department of tourism
travel wisconsin news


Stephanie Klett

Dear Friends,

We are thrilled to share with you our latest television commercial starring former Green Bay Packers wide receiver and “Dancing with the Stars” champion Donald Driver. This new ad tops off what has been an incredible eight-year journey promoting Wisconsin’s $20.6 billion tourism industry that has experienced a 40 percent increase since 2011. I’m pleased to report that the Department of Tourism has earned an unprecedented 125 awards for marketing and PR, including three U.S. Travel Association Mercury Awards – the tourism industry’s highest honor.

This week, we were in Milwaukee to give a first look at the new television ads. The dynamic Donald Driver joined us at Discovery World, where we unveiled the 30-second commercial along with three 6-second TV spots. The commercial is part of a larger marketing campaign that includes radio, print and digital advertising. Every major TV network from Milwaukee was there to cover the launch, which was presented to a full crowd that included the Wisconsin Cranberry Festival Board, Cranfest Royalty and representatives from the Green Bay Packers. Everyone fell in love with Donald and his megawatt smile. It’s no surprise that this commercial is on pace to be the most viewed commercial in Travel Wisconsin history.

What an honor (and fun!) it has been to work with you on promoting your destinations, organizations and attractions. Wisconsin is simply the most incredible state in America. Thank you Governor Walker for appointing me Secretary of Tourism. You have been such a wonderful advocate for Wisconsin Tourism and making our industry a top priority.  Thank you to the legislature for your terrific support. Thank you to the Governor's Council on Tourism for great advice and leadership. Thank you to the Travel Wisconsin Team who operate on a shoe-string budget and who make miracles happen. And to the retiring Deputy Secretary Sarah Klavas and Communications Director Lisa Marshall, your service to the state has been truly blue chip and grace-filled. You have made this journey remarkable. 

And last but not least, thanks to all of you in the tourism industry, for the countless hours you put in promoting your destinations, attractions and events. You have the set the so bar high. All the best for 2019. It has been the ride of a lifetime and a privilege being on this journey with you.

DD and SK


Congratulations to Marinette on being selected as a Top 10 Finalist for Season 4 of the Hulu program, “Small Business Revolution.” Marinette applied with their twin city Menominee, MI to be a part of the show, which focuses on the revitalization of small towns. Marinette and Menominee were chosen as finalists out of 12,000 applicants.



Governor's Tourism Award Nominations

Do you know someone who’s made a significant impact on the state's tourism industry? Nominate them for the Governor's Tourism Award. Sponsored by the Governor's Council on Tourism, the awards recognize individuals and businesses in the tourism industry that have shown dedication, creativity and excellence. Information, award descriptions and nomination forms can be found online. The nomination deadline is Friday, Jan. 18, 2019.

Upcoming Conferences

Wisconsin Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Conference – Jan. 27-29, Wisconsin Dells

Mark your calendars for WIGCOT 2019, March 17-19 at Kalahari Resorts & Conventions in Wisconsin Dells, WI.

Travel Green Wisconsin

Congratulations to Full Circle Supply in La Crosse on its recent Travel Green Wisconsin certification. Click here to learn more about the Travel Green Wisconsin program.

Grant Updates

January 1 is the deadline to apply for Ready, Set, Go! (RSG) Sports Marketing and Tourism Information Center (TIC) grants. Information and applications are available here.


Winter Marketing Overview

The objective of this year’s winter campaign is twofold: to proactively inform travelers of Wisconsin snow conditions, and to promote skiing through Ski Deals at several locations around the state. We’ll engage with travelers, visitors and fans through social media, digital, radio, TV and print advertising. Take a closer look at how winter in Wisconsin will come to a screen or radio near you.

Marketing Co-Op Opportunity

We’re excited to announce a new SEM (search engine marketing) co-op program in partnership with Madden Media. This opportunity allows you to expand your digital marketing plan with paid search. Madden will work with co-op partners to set up a paid search campaign, helping ensure a greater percentage of relevant consumers find and visit your website. The Department will even provide a dollar-for-dollar match for each partner. Complete information on the program can be found here.  

Subscribe to Travel Wisconsin Emails

Be in the know with Travel Wisconsin’s popular newsletters. The Wisconsin Traveler provides bi-weekly features on statewide events and travel stories, and our Fall Color Report and Snow Conditions Report emails provide the latest fall color and snow conditions around the state. See all of our weekly newsletters here, and sign up today!



The CP Holiday Train Coming to Wisconsin


5 Wisconsin Supper Clubs with Gangster History


6 Romantic Cabins for a Warm Wisconsin Winter


  • Cherry Drop in Sister Bay
  • A polar bear plunge
  • Cheese Drop in Plymouth
  • A local fireworks show

vote here

Last month we asked, which outdoor winter activity are you most looking forward to? “Cruising on a snowmobile” took the top spot with 44% of the votes.