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Texas agency to launch new tourism spots

/ Source: The Associated Press

State officials hope that scenes of Tex-Mex dining in San Antonio and mountain biking in Big Bend National Park will convince couch potatoes to spend some money visiting scenic locations in Texas.

The state's tourism marketing organization said Wednesday it will launch a television, print and online campaign to showcase Texas to the world.

Officials say the advertisements cost $2.3 million to produce, and they plan to spend $22.2 million placing them on cable TV, in magazines and on travel Web sites. The money comes from hotel and motel taxes.

"Texas offers visitors from across the state and around the world an unparalleled experience," said Gov. Rick Perry. "Once you visit Texas, you may never want to leave."

The spots are set in various locales from the beach on South Padre Island to the Wyler Aerial Tramway above El Paso to a minor league baseball game in Round Rock.

The TV ads will begin airing next week on national cable channels including the Travel Channel, HGTV, TLC and BBC America. Magazine and online ads have already begun.

Texas Tourism, the state's visitor-marketing organization, also launched a tool on that lets people plan vacation itineraries to match the advertisements or check out driving tours of the state.