Georgia City Takes Welcome Wagon to the Web at GatewayMacon.org

Macon, GA, June 19, 2013 –(PR.com)– The twenty-first-century version of the Welcome Wagon has taken to the web. In its latest efforts to model collaboration and promote its partnering organizations, the Gateway Macon Initiative recently enhanced www.GatewayMacon.org to integrate the full potential of Macon Arts’ Ovations 365 community calendar capabilities along with a variety of additional new features. The streamlined portal site now also includes the Macon Press and Media Room, news articles from the community and partnering organizations, as well as the latest news on Macon Movies. The Macon Media Room includes a top-of-the-line library of high definition video clips and high-resolution photography of Macon’s assets. These digital assets are available through an online request form.

The purpose of GatewayMacon.org has always been to provide a portal to information about Macon’s key organizations and assets while linking users to all of these organizations from within a single site. Ever champions of the arts, Gateway Macon-partner Macon Arts Alliance recently introduced a community calendar called Ovations 365, supported by funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the Community Foundation of Central Georgia. Ovations365.com is part of the Artsopolis Network, a centralized community arts and events calendar that functions as a marketing, planning, audience development and fundraising tool for the more than 60 arts and cultural organizations served by Macon Arts Alliance.

As part of its recent site upgrades, Gateway Macon has fully integrated the capabilities of the Ovations calendar. “With the technical assistance of Artsopolis and Third Wave Digital, the transition has been seamless,” according to Carley Carden with Gateway Macon. “The hope is that other community organizations will recognize the power of such partnerships and follow suit.” Ovations 365 now provides the Gateway Macon users with a community calendar that is updated daily via RSS feed, benefiting both organizations and their respective partners. Macon Arts Alliance recognizes the value of the Gateway Macon Initiative and the importance of this exciting partnership.

“Gateway Macon does a fantastic job demonstrating to the community and the world that Macon is a great place to live. There’s always something happening, so much so, that it can be hard to keep up. Macon Arts Alliance is working to unify our community calendar, and our new partnership with Gateway Macon brings us one step closer to that reality. We’re proud to say that Gateway Macon’s event listings on GatewayMacon.org are now powered by Ovations365.com,” said Jonathan Dye, Director of Communications for the Macon Arts Alliance.

In addition to its web-centric efforts, and with the assistance of its partnering organizations and local businesses, Gateway Macon has become the point of contact for production offices to provide official welcome kits for visiting film casts and crews. In the past year, over 500 welcome bags have been distributed to the casts and crews of films including 42, the story of Jackie Robinson, and the upcoming film based on the video game series Need for Speed. In the heart of Georgia, it stands to reason the community would go above and beyond in providing the utmost in true southern hospitality. “The Georgia Film Commission and Gateway Macon partner, the Macon Film Commission, are doing a fantastic job of attracting major motion pictures to Georgia–and more specifically, to Macon,” states Carley Carden with Gateway Macon, “It’s our goal to offer visitors, prospective residents, students, business, industry, and investors a comprehensive, dynamic snapshot of the many facets of life in our vibrant city here in Macon and Bibb County. This innovative, efficient, and unique portal offered by GatewayMacon.org is possible only because of the collaboration with our partnering organizations.”

Gateway Macon was created in 2010 with funding provided by the Peyton Anderson Foundation, which was founded by philanthropist and former owner and publisher of Macon Telegraph, Peyton Tooke Anderson, Jr. There are now 38 partnering organizations from within the community under the Gateway Macon umbrella. A primary goal is to connect efforts to promote Macon to a regional, statewide and national audience. The Gateway Initiative is a multifaceted, highly strategic plan of work that builds on the momentum of existing efforts among the community’s diverse organizations to encourage investment and promote Macon’s sites, events, cultural scene, livability and affordability.

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