DALLAS -- Spencer Hawn and Mallory Black are visiting Dallas from Seattle.
Spencer thought they’d find, “country bars everywhere, everyone in Cowboy hats and stuff.”
If that’s what people are thinking about Dallas, it seems the city could use an image overhaul. Turns out, the Convention and Visitors Bureau thinks so, too.
“You associate big with Texas, especially outside of Texas,” Hawn said.
Starting in January, the city's new slogan is "Big Things Happen Here." A new campaign by the city aims to grow that impression beyond our borders.
“I think it's more than just ideas, it's about actions and events," said President and CEO of the Convention and Visitors Bureau Phillip Jones. "It's based on the fact that Dallas is a city of success and it's where optimism meets opportunity.”
One percent of the hotel tax will pay for the $5-million campaign annually with the goal to grow interest in Dallas as a destination location.
It's also relying on locals as brand ambassadors, to lure people to town. However, Martisha Runnels isn't quite sold yet.
“There's nothing down here,” Runnels said.
Dallas is boasting a growing arts and culture scene, including the AT&T Performing Arts Center, the Omni Hotel attracting conventions downtown, and the new Kylde Warren deck park.
But Jones said getting locals on board is a major part of the campaign.
“We need input and suggestions from local residents, because we need them to believe in what a great destination Dallas is and help us sell it,” he said.