Three new members have been appointed to the tourism board in Haywood County that guides tourism marketing, promotions and development.
The recent round of appointments to the Tourism Development Authority continues a changing of the guard on the tourism board that’s been playing out for two years now. Of the 12-member board, eight have been appointed in the last two years.
The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority may be slimming down. Eventually.
“It’s in discussion,” said Robert Jumper, chairman of the tourism authority.
The Jackson TDA was launched by county commissioners and is charged with marketing the area and attracting tourist dollars. The tourism board currently consists of 15 members, all hailing from various pockets of the area’s tourism-related businesses.
The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority is pursuing a leader, someone to act as the organization’s executive director. The workload is becoming more than volunteer board members can handle.
“Some of us feel, and I feel, it’s going to be a full-time job,” Robert Jumper, head of Jackson’s TDA, said earlier this month.
With park funding falling and visitation increasing, keeping those iconic views open along the 46 miles of Blue Ridge Parkway in Haywood County — without breaking the bank — is a challenge. Fast-growing trees and shrubs grow up around the overlooks irrespective of budgets, so when Parkway Superintendent Mark Woods visited the Haywood Tourism Development Authority’s board meeting last week, it was with a view to talk about how to make those dollars stretch.
In a never-ending quest to lure tourists to Haywood County, the county tourism agency has once again changed the logo and slogan that will appear in its marketing and advertising materials.
The Haywood County Tourism Authority is exploring whether to close its two visitor centers in Waynesville and Maggie Valley, questioning whether money to run the sites could be better spent luring tourists in the first place rather than itinerary planning once they arrive.
The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority is pretty sure it needs to start searching for an executive director to help head up the organization.
“We believe we’re at the point where someone wakes up in the morning and this is what they do,” said Clifford Meads, chair of the TDA’s marketing committee.
The type of visitors being eyed by Jackson County tourism officials fall into various categories. Each one of those “types” is being targeted through different ads.
There are advertisements featuring flyfishing. And gambling. Or how about kayaking or pottery?
A new logo will soon chug onto the marketing landscape of Bryson City following the Swain County Tourism Development Authority and the Swain County Chamber of Commerce’s approval of a design meant to emphasize the town’s most unique aspect — the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad.
It’s an unenviable task, but one Haywood County tourism leaders face every year: weighing dozens of festivals and niche marketing campaigns vying for a share of tourism promotion dollars.
Deciding which festivals hold the most promise for luring coveted tourists is a balancing act, and one that’s sure to produce its share of winners and losers.