Spearfish will welcome more than 40 international travel planners at the 25th annual tourism tradeshow event


PIERRE, S.D. - South Dakota will host the 25th Annual International Roundup (IRU), an international tourism trade show event, in Spearfish from April 29-May 1. The event will bring in nearly 200 tourism professionals from across the globe to conduct one-on-one business negotiations in just two days of meetings that help to contribute to an estimated $123.7 million in future travel to the five-state region of South Dakota, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming ($22.4 million to South Dakota).

“We couldn't be more honored to host the 2019 International Roundup and offer a warm Black Hills welcome to everyone who will be attending the event,” said Mistie Caldwell, executive director of Visit Spearfish Inc. “This is an excellent opportunity for Spearfish and the entire Black Hills region to meet dozens of international travel professionals face-to-face and share what outstanding travel experiences we have in our corner of the world.”

The 2019 IRU event, hosted by Visit Spearfish in partnership with South Dakota Department of Tourism and Rocky Mountain International (RMI), is expected to provide a long-term economic boost for the region. The exclusive event will include more than 3,600 pre-scheduled appointments connecting more than 40 international tour operators from Australia, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and United Kingdom with more than 100 regional destinations, attractions and accommodations, including 24 from South Dakota.

“Hosting this event in Spearfish is not only incredibly valuable for the community, but immensely important to South Dakota as we continue our international marketing efforts,” said James Hagen, Secretary of the Department of Tourism. “We look forward to bringing the northern Black Hills of South Dakota to the forefront of the global travel industry at this premiere event for the travel and tourism industry.”

The international tour operators who sell all-inclusive travel itineraries and packages to the five-state region branded as “The Great American West” are invited to attend the event and enhance their product base and knowledge of the area. Many of the operators who attend are small to medium-sized companies who specialize in tailor-made “fly and drive” itineraries for individual clients. This event allows tour operators to provide unique and customized experiences in this region of the U.S. and provide regional participants with an economical way of conducting business in the international tourism market that would otherwise be generated only through substantial individual investment and an exhaustive number of around-the-world trips.

During their time in the Spearfish area, international tour operators will experience local tourism product on several guided tours. The tours are one of the most effective and efficient ways to enable tour operators to better sell the destination to their clients. They also allow local destinations, attractions and accommodations an opportunity to feature their products and showcase their community to a global audience.

The 2019 IRU will take place at the Spearfish Holiday Inn Convention Center, 305 N. 27th St., Spearfish, SD. To learn more about International Roundup, visit

The South Dakota Department of Tourism is comprised of Tourism and the South Dakota Arts Council. The department is led by Secretary James Hagen.


About International Roundup
International Roundup (IRU) is an exclusive annual tourism tradeshow event designed for suppliers and buyers focused on tourism in the Great American West region. The event consists of two days of intensive pre-scheduled business appointments where every regional organization and every international tour operator/buyer are guaranteed to meet. This unique B2B event gives suppliers looking to increase international visitation the opportunity to conduct business with international buyers that are looking to add regional products to their list of offerings to their clients. The business negotiations that take place at the IRU event contribute to the generation of future travel to the five-state region of Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. For more information about IRU, visit

About the Great American West
The Great American West is the brand for the international marketing efforts of the state tourism offices of Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming. Collectively, the cooperative markets to both travel trade (tour operators & travel agents) and consumers through advertising and public relations efforts. Individually, each state office works with their industry partners to raise awareness of their state and the region as a whole through the promotion of products and travel destinations. The Great American West contracts with Rocky Mountain International to help coordinate their united efforts in seven international markets, including the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, France, Italy, Benelux and the Nordic countries. For more information about GAW, visit

About Rocky Mountain International
Rocky Mountain International specializes in tourism marketing and business development for the American West. Our mission is to increase incremental visitation, spending and market share of the region to fuel the economies of our stakeholders. Through our work, we will significantly contribute to job creation, tax revenues and increased quality of life in the communities where we live. RMI headquarters are in Cheyenne, Wyo., with overseas operations in London, Munich, Amsterdam, Paris, Milan and Sydney. For more information about RMI, visit

About the South Dakota Department of Tourism
With world-renowned monuments, breathtaking landscapes, rich culture & heritage and warm hospitality, South Dakota inspires a heightened sense of freedom and optimism and is one of America’s most desired and meaningful vacation destinations. The Department of Tourism works to maximize tourism’s impact on South Dakota’s economy by increasing domestic and international travel to our state. For more information about the South Dakota Department of Tourism, visit


Katlyn Richter, Global Media & Public Relations Director
South Dakota Department of Tourism
Phone: 605-773-3301
Email: [email protected]

Kim Paulson, PR & Communications Manager
Rocky Mountain International
Phone: 307-637-4977
Email: [email protected]