The Meath Tourism staff became aware of this while they were busily marketing the county at the Alltech World Equestrian Games which were held in Kentucky earlier in 2010. They discovered that the majority of Americans who had visited the Meath stand intend on taking a first visit to Meath or have been there and are planning on a second trip. According to Meath Tourism marketing officer, Michele Whelan, there is a great deal of interest in the Irish/Meath culture.
Representatives, Michele Whelan and Claire King, from the council were present at the games showcasing the many things to do in Ireland. Working hard during the event they placed all their energy into marketing the country at the Tourism Ireland stand. Meath County Manager, Tom Dowling, was also present at the games as a member of the team promoting County Meath.
Ms Whelan said that the Irish stand turned out to be one of the most regularly visited during the games. Though it garnered a lot of attention from the Kentucky crowd, it also became clear that Meath was a key aspect of this interest. She went on to say that the team was delighted regarding the level of interest in the country and the awareness of the Meath region in particular, considering how much it has to present the heritage tourist.
She also acknowledged the thoughtful support, during the event, which came from Tourism Ireland and Failte Ireland. The two groups had advertised Meath Tourism by promoting Meath and the Boyne Valley on their stand. Whelan went on to add that she believed that the trip had successfully generated a greater awareness of all the things to do in Meath County by appealing to US interest in heritage sites.