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Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau presents awards at annual dinner

Kim Stepinsky | For The Tribune-Review
(from left), Rob Fulton, President, Pennsylvania Association of Travel and Tourism, Andrea Cuda, Chair of Board of Directors, Laurel Highlands Visitor Bureau, and Ronald Virag, Executive Director, Laurel Highlands Visitor Bureau, join guest speaker, Richard J. Allan, Secretary, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, at the Laurel Highlands Visitor Bureau annual dinner, held at Seven Springs Mountain Resort on Wednesday evening, September 26, 2012.

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Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012, 8:56 p.m.

The mission of the Laurel Highlands Visitors Bureau is to entice visitors to travel through the scenic region and enjoy its many attractions.

Mixing business with the pleasure of that purpose, the organization held its annual dinner and awards presentation on Wednesday at one of the area's premier destinations, Seven Springs Mountain Resort.

Honored at a private reception preceding the public event was guest speaker Richard J. Allan, secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Also present among the VIPs were Rob Fulton, president of the Pennsylvania Association of Travel and Tourism; and Cindy Dunn, deputy secretary of the DCNR.

Following a dinner of chicken breast and giant prawn, the following Champions of Tourism Awards were presented:

• Tourism Employee of the Year: Sarah DeLorenzo, office manager of Benner's Meadow Run Camping and Cabins, north of Farmington.

• Tourism Entrepreneurs of the Year: Bradley and Maureen Smith, owners of Confluence Cyclery in Confluence.

• Tourism Trailblazer of the Year: Eric Martin, o-owner of Wilderness Voyageurs in Ohio-pyle.

Seen at the Springs were LHVB Executive Director Ronald Virag and board chairwoman Andrea Cuda, along with board members Michael Langer with Paula, Judy Pletcher, Bill Arnold with Lori, Laura Argenbright, Linda McKenna Boxx, David Stoner with Debbie and Phil Light with Gladys.

Also seen were Westmoreland County Commissioners Tyler Courtney, Ted Kopas and Chuck Anderson with Nancy; along with Bob Appleby, Bruce Robinson, Annie Urban, Robert and Mary Lou Rendulic, Mary Bethea, Pete Cuda, Linda Kubas, Shannon Meyers, Dave and Debbie Sarault, John and Diane Watson, Mamie Garver, John Hess and LHVD staffers Julie Donovan, Rebecca Shaffer, Rachel Roehrig and Katie Showalter.

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