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Wisconsin B&B Association Announces Formation of New Regional Organization, Midwest Association of Independent Inns

Wisconsin B&B Association Announces Formation of New Regional Organization, Midwest Association of Independent Inns

WAUPACA, Wis. (June 21, 2023) - The Wisconsin Bed & Breakfast Association, one of the longest standing state B&B organizations in the country, announced today it is forming an expanded association representing independent B&Bs, inns, and boutique hotels in the four-state region of Wisconsin, Illinois, Minnesota, and Iowa, with plans to welcome in properties from all 13 Midwest states. The new organization, known as the Midwest Association of Independent Inns (MWInns), will launch its website,, and Facebook and Instagram pages later this month. Travelers who favor independent lodging choices and enjoy all the Midwest has to offer will find this new searchable website a rich source of “best of the Midwest” guides by state, with individual inn listings including detailed information and up-to-date photos on each property. All member properties of MWInns will be licensed, inspected, and insured and must meet high standards for hospitality, service, and cleanliness to be considered for membership. A MWInns gift card is planned and will be accepted at all member inns. The email for MWInns is

Kerri Thiel, executive director of MWInns who formerly held the same position with the Wisconsin B&B Association, noted that visitors will be pleased with the best practices these Midwest properties bring to the travel experience, with many offering concierge-style “inn-sider” tips for guests on what to see and do in the community, flexible check-in times, a range of breakfast styles, interior design in keeping with the architecture of the property but with modern amenities, private bathrooms, high-end linens, lovely gardens and grounds, free parking, complimentary beverages and snacks, and more. “We want to show travelers who already love the great Midwest and those who are yet to discover what makes this region such a wonderful slice of Americana why our properties represent a better way to stay,” said Thiel. “With this new regional association, it will be easier than ever for vacationers to enjoy the independent inn experience wherever their travels take them in the region.”

Member properties of MWInns range in size from cozy cabins in the woods and lakeside B&Bs to historic inns and boutique urban hotels with several dozen suites from which to choose. “Some travelers crave a social environment with a group breakfast and an evening wine tasting, while others gravitate toward a more quiet and unplugged experience,” shared Thiel. “That’s the beauty of an independent inn stay, as owners can read the needs of guests and deliver on those needs, which is difficult to come by in a typical hotel stay.”


While this new regional association is a plus for inn-seekers, it also has its rewards for member inns, with the website providing added exposure for properties by serving as a national and international travel resource in a way that individual state B&B association websites can’t. MWInns also supports its members with Google ads, social media content, and enewsletters, all of which provide consumers with Midwest travel information grouped into specific categories – think jazz festivals or culinary tours or biking adventures - making it easy for people to plan multiple trips around the region geared to their favorite pastimes, with nearby member inns conveniently cross-referenced. The previous Wisconsin B&B Association and its website will be phased out, with the new MWInns website replacing it.

MWInns is already planning an annual conference and trade show for Midwest innkeepers, set for Nov. 7-9 in Galena, Ill. The conference agenda includes sessions on content marketing strategies, operational musts for independent inns, amenities to enhance the stay, how to partner with local businesses, and the role of artificial intelligence in tourism. The organization also holds Aspiring Innkeeper seminars for those interested in learning more about the ins and outs of B&B ownership.


The membership dues structure of MWInns will support not only the many marketing programs designed to drive guests to the members inns but also communication programs, "book direct" initiatives, sharing of best practices, advocacy, and education. Independent properties interested in pursuing membership may contact MWInns at  


“As a state B&B association established in 1987, we’ve long invited travelers to ‘Seek the Unique,’ and now you could say we’re employing that same message in reaching out to potential member inns across the Midwest looking for a unique way to market themselves,” said Thiel. “There’s nothing else like this in the Midwest, or the country for that matter.”

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