Happy New Year!
Okay let’s make 2015 the best year ever, so far. It is a time for renewal, new commitments, new promises for self improvement…oh my, if that’s the case my list just got real long list.
I am not one to make New Year’s resolutions, but I do make a conscience effort to make some year round improvements along the way. I guess the real measure is if you feel you are making some long term improvements in any category you wish to improve.
At DeKalb Tourism our mission is simple and to the point and we try to get better each year at two focus areas that are in-line with our mission statement.
1-Annual growth in the number of visitors that choose DeKalb as their destination for a vacation.
2-Improved visitor experience at our visitor information center. Provide the best and most updated information with all the options our visitors can see and do in DeKalb.
We have been very fortunate in that tourism has continued to grow each year with last year crossing the 71 million dollars spent by tourists visiting our area. This means taxes were paid into the revenue stream of our area on $71 million. To highlight this number we have doubled expenditures in less than 10 years.
It is our goal to keep growing. There are a number of projects in the works right now that will help insure long term growth in tourism to DeKalb. A few of these projects are: Lookout Gateway Trail system that would link public land trails to Fort Payne and Mentone. The objective is to increase our visitor stay by a day or two. In addition the multipurpose trail would be a boost in health and wellness opportunities for our local communities. There are ongoing projects being considered at the Jacksonville State University Little River Canyon Center as well as One World Adventure community center in the Quinn building. There are projects being worked on by Landmarks of DeKalb for historical tourism and multiple projects in Mentone including a Cultural Arts Center. This is just a sampling of potential for DeKalb. There are more, but all of these are long term projects and all upon fruition will bring growth and development in tourism but also growth for all the communities involved.
I’d like to wish each of you a blessed and prosperous New Year.