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Governor Gina Raimondo and First Gentleman Andy Moffit Unite with Hospitality Industry To Support Local Businesses Affected By Brutal Winter

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - As New England residents begin to thaw out from a particularly brutal winter plagued by frequent snow storms and bone-chilling temperatures, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo and First Gentleman Andy Moffit are partnering with the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau (PWCVB) and the Rhode Island Hospitality Association in the second annual "Do-Over-Day."

At a press conference held today at Café Nuovo, First Gentleman Andy Moffit named April 18 as Do-Over-Day in Rhode Island and encouraged people to support local restaurants, shops and other businesses most impacted by winter storms.

"The hospitality industry in our state is an integral part of the economy, employing many hardworking Rhode Islanders," said First Gentleman Andy Moffit. "Many of those businesses are locally and independently owned. Do-Over-Day provides us - their friends and neighbors - with the opportunity to show our support after a harsh winter that has negatively impacted their livelihoods."

The PWCVB first created Do-Over-Day last year and has since augmented the program. A website, www.Do-Over-Day.com, has been created and features special dining, shopping and attraction offers tied to the initiative. Participants in the program include the Omni Providence Hotel, the Bristol Harbor Inn, the Rue De L'Espoir, Pamfilio's, and Bird's Eye View Helicopter. The RI Hospitality Association has also joined the PWCVB in the effort this year, giving it a statewide scope.

"Many of our members were affected by the winter weather and urged us to assist in some way. We partner with the PWCVB on many initiatives and saw Do-Over-Day as a way to pool resources and talent for the betterment of the hospitality industry statewide," said RI Hospitality President & CEO Dale Venturini. "We are also grateful to have the support of the Governor and the First Gentleman, who are staunch proponents of our hospitality economy."

While both the PWCVB and RI Hospitality have promoted the program to its respective members, the marketing initiative is open to hospitality- and tourism-related businesses statewide.

"Our main objective is to support our entire community and to get people across Rhode Island to join in," said PWCVB President & CEO Martha Sheridan. "Many people had plans ruined because of the winter weather. We are asking them to "do over" that Valentine's Day dinner, holiday shopping trip, or a day of family fun. By simply recreating activities that were cancelled, we can make a substantial impact on local business."

Those businesses looking to participate in the program may call the PWCVB at 401-456-0200 or email DoOverDay@pwcvb.com.

With more than 650 foodservice and hospitality members in Rhode Island, the RI Hospitality Association (RIHA) has been the voice of the hospitality industry in the state since 1982. For more information on the RIHA, please call (401) 223-1120, or write to: RI Hospitality Association, 94 Sabra Street, Cranston, RI, 02910, or visit www.RIHospitality.org.

The Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau is an accredited, 501(c)(6) nonprofit organization whose mission is to create vibrant growth for the local hospitality economy by promoting, developing, and expanding a united visitor industry. For more information, contact (401)-456-0200 or visit www.GoProvidence.com.