Springfield soon will have an army of ambassadors who can politely tell visitors about what there is to see and do in the city, or at least they’ll know where to look it up.

The Convention & Visitors Bureau is launching a free program designed to train frontline staff at hotels, attractions, restaurants and other places that appeal to visitors about what the city offers and etiquette on dealing with the public.

Discover SGF will include online videos at www.DiscoverSGF.com followed up with a test that ensures the participant viewed the entire videos and absorbed the information. Once employees pass the required tests, they receive the designation of Certified Hospitality Professional and free admission to several attractions and events so they can experience the city for themselves and share their experiences with visitors. Currently one video is complete and more are scheduled to be produced soon.

Businesses providing free admission for those successfully completing Discover SGF include Discovery Center, Fantastic Caverns, Dickerson Park Zoo and Urban Districts Alliance-managed events. More are expected to provide admission as the program grows.

Businesses in the tourism industry are encouraged to have employees participate in the program or employees can participate on their own. Several businesses have already signed up to have their employees participate. They include:

  • Courtyard by Marriott - Springfield Airport
  • Days Inn
  • Dickerson Park Zoo
  • Discovery Center
  • DoubleTree Hotel
  • Hilton Garden Inn
  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites
  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites - Medical District
  • Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites
  • La Quinta Inn & Suites - Airport Plaza
  • La Quinta Inn South
  • Ramada Plaza Hotel & Convention Center
  • Residence Inn
  • Sleep Inn Medical District
  • University Plaza Hotel & Convention Center

Discover SGF is being launched as part of the CVB’s National Travel & Tourism Week activities May 3-11. During the week, destinations throughout the country participate in a variety of activities to showcase the importance of travel and tourism to the nation’s economy.

The CVB is a nonprofit organization dedicated to boosting the local economy by promoting travel and tourism to Springfield. For more information, contact the CVB at 417-881-5300 or 800-678-8767 or visit www.SpringfieldMO.org.