May 4-12 is National Tourism Week and Madison has plenty of events planned.

With more than 350,000 visitors annually, Madison has good reason to join in the celebration. The Madison Area Convention and Visitors Bureau has a variety of events planned.

May 4: Eleutherian College is open for free tours from 1-2:30 p.m. and 3-4 p.m. "The Escape of Caroline," as told by Robert Sanders and Debbie Asante will be presented. 

May 5: Be a Guest in Your Home Town. From 1-4 p.m., the Lanier Mansion, Dr Hutchings office, Saddletree Factory, Costigan House, Sullivan House, Jefferson County Heritage Center and Schofield House will offer free tours.

May 6: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Open house at the Visitors Center.

May 7: 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Hospitality training for front line employees at the Visitors Center. Training is free and each session begins on the hour.

May 8: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Award reception at the Visitors Center to honor "Super Tourism Stars."   The award is to honor an individual in a tourism related field that goes out of his/her way to make sure guests always feel welcome while visiting our community.

May 9:  Wear Red Day to celebrate and draw attention to the importance of the tourism industry to the Madison area.

May 10: Balloons on Main.

May 11-12: Madison in Bloom. Tour 11 gardens in Madison's Historic District.

We pride ourselves on welcoming visitors and making sure their visits are enjoyable. Every year we hear comments and receive letters from out-of-towners thanking the people of Madison for their gracious manner.

We all should join in recognizing and celebrating the importance of tourism to our community.  In Madison, tourism means jobs, quality of life, economic development, preservation, and vitality.