Ohio’s Lake Erie Shores & Islands is a prime destination for leisure and group travel. Groups enjoy a variety of entertaining attractions, as well as a supportive group planning team. Alyscia Sberna recently joined that team and has hit the ground running! We sat down with her to talk about her role in promoting and selling the destination to student, social, and motorcoach groups.
How did you get here?
AS: Born and raised locally, I graduated from Bowling Green State University with a degree in Tourism, Hospitality, and Event Management. During my summers, I worked at the Jet Express island ferry and Kelleys Island Chamber of Commerce. I also interned at Bowling Green Convention and Visitors Bureau. After graduation, I joined the conference services team at Kalahari Resorts & Conventions, gaining valuable experience in the convention business. I joined Lake Erie Shores & Islands in October and I am excited to learn and grow even more in my field.
What is your favorite part of this industry?
AS: What I have always loved about this industry is the connections. Over the years working in the industry and attending events, I am connected with many of the people I met through my previous experiences. I know that working at Lake Erie Shores & Islands I will get to meet and connect with so many more people.
What is one work-related thing you are proud of?
AS: I get to administer and promote our Group Co-Op program, exclusively offered for local group-friendly businesses. The program gives tourism partners a chance to get their name out to operators through tradeshows I attend, site-visits, and leads I receive. For 2020, I have 13 partners signed up and my first tradeshow coming up soon.
What is your favorite travel destination in the Lake Erie Shores & Islands region?
AS: This is such a hard question for me because there are so many options in our area, and all are places I love to go to myself! Ultimately, I would have to say Put-in-Bay, located on South Bass Island, holds a special place in my heart because it is where I got engaged. Not only that, it is such a beautiful island with so many things to do.
What’s your favorite annual Shores & Islands event?
AS: I would say the ice festival, usually held in February in Vermilion. Called the “Ice-A-Fair,” it is such a cool event to see what sculptors can do with only a block of ice. You can then walk around downtown and enjoy the shops and restaurants. I also love all the summer and fall festivals throughout the region. I try to make as many as I can to enjoy the people, food, and atmosphere.
What do you do outside of work?
AS: I enjoy being with family and friends, being outside on warm sunny days, and spending time on the lake and islands. I also enjoy listening to crime/mystery podcasts and working on puzzles. I am currently working on a 2000-piece puzzle and it’s challenging, but I love it!