Visit Duluth board approves new deal with City of Duluth

After a contentious discussion about how Duluth’s tourism marketing is handled, Visit Duluth’s Board of Directors has approved a deal to partner with the city and its new marketing agency, Bellmont Partners.

Visit Duluth released a statement Wednesday afternoon saying that its board has approved a three-year contract to provide convention, event and sports sales, and visitor center services to the City of Duluth. The deal still requires approval by the Duluth City Council.

"While this is a change from the past, we anticipate continued success and remain committed to doing our part to drive a strong tourism economy. We would like to thank our partners, community members, and all of our passionate friends who have supported Visit Duluth throughout this process," Visit Duluth board chair Brianna Vander Heyden and President/CEO Anna Tanski said in a statement.

In August, Mayor Emily Larson announced the plan to award a $1.8 million contract to Twin Cities-based Bellmont Partners and its partner Lawrence & Schiller for advertising and promotional services and a $400,000 contract to Visit Duluth for convention coordination and visitor center operations.

Visit Duluth said once the city council gives final approval, it will post a job opening for a new leadership position.