Destination Lake Winnebago Region Makes Major Donation To Blue Line Family Ice Center

Destination Lake Winnebago Region, the area’s official Visitors Bureau, sold its former Visitor Center building in 2018 and is now using a portion of the proceeds –not utilized to market the region— to support a key partner in Fond du Lac tourism.

The Blue Line Family Ice Center is a highly regarded, non-profit skating facility that supports the development of skating among people of all ages and abilities – and happens to attract a regular influx of visitors into the region. Blue Line is currently upgrading its facility with the much-needed addition of three female locker rooms. The Destination Lake Winnebago Region donation will play an important role in the completion of the project, by funding the Fire Alarm Control System in the new locker rooms, as well as updating the system throughout the entire facility.

For decades, the Blue Line Family Ice Center has been one of the Fond du Lac community’s premier tourism assets, and a year-round driver of overnight stays. Hotels, restaurants, shops, and gas stations rely on the regular influx of Blue Line visitors into the region. “What we love most about Blue Line, is that while it is so important to the tourism industry in Fond du Lac, it is also an amazing facility serving our residents as well,” said Craig Molitor, Destination Lake Winnebago Region’s President, and CEO. “Playing a role in the completion of this project is incredibly gratifying for all of us here at Destination Lake Winnebago Region.”

This is an exceptional donation for Destination Lake Winnebago Region, which seldom has the kind of resources to make such a move. Destination Lake Winnebago Region’s single revenue stream is Bed Tax, a pass-through tax assessed only on overnight guests at hotels, motels, and online B&Bs (no locals are taxed to fund the organization). The 2018 sale of the Visitor Center made it possible. “We were in the unique position of having the one-time opportunity to fund important safety equipment at Blue Line,” said Terry Davis, Destination Lake Winnebago Region Chairperson Board of Directors. “We are convinced this is a smart investment in tourism at a crucial time in our industry.” Youth Sports are viewed as one of the most reliable tourism market segments, which is particularly important during challenging economic times.

While this kind of donation may be a one-time occurrence, Destination Lake Winnebago Region and Blue Line have maintained a long-running, positive partnership. “We rely on Destination Lake Winnebago Region to assist with our bidding on ice sports tournaments and they rely on us to consistently deliver hotel room nights to the local hotels,” shared Tim Pickart, Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Blue Line Family Ice Center. “That Destination Lake Winnebago Region can step into the process of upgrading our facility with this meaningful donation is an incredible example of how cooperation makes things happen.”