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Vinton County Bank

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March 21, 2018

3/9/2018 3:53:00 PM
Need for motel a tourism priority
Vinton County Commissioners agree on great potential
Vinton County Commissioners (from the left)  Jim Satory, Mark Fout and Tim Eberts recently discussed the countyís commitment to helping the tourism industry grow in the county. (Telegram Photo By Red Thompson, Jr.)

Vinton County Commissioners (from the left) Jim Satory, Mark Fout and Tim Eberts recently discussed the countyís commitment to helping the tourism industry grow in the county. (Telegram Photo By Red Thompson, Jr.)

Staff Writer

The tourism business continues to grow in Vinton County and the board of commissioners is committed to projects to foster its development as a heritage designation. The growth of the industry was on the minds of Commissioners Tim Eberts, Mark Fout, and Jim Satory in a recent interview with The Telegram.

"Tourism is one of our growth industries and we need to move to the next level," said Commissioner Fout.

All three commissioners assert the county is attracting more tourists and now should be attracting businesses to serve their needs. One of those businesses they mentioned is attracting a modern motel to the county and whether it would be locally built or constructed by a national or regional chain. The Vinton County Visitors and Conventions Bureau also feels strongly about the need for a local motel or hotel.

Commissioner Eberts pointed out there are several reasons why the current situation is ripe for a hotel operation.

"U.S. Route 50 is a coast-to-coast highway and many people travel the whole length of it," Eberts observed.

Commissioner Satory noted a number of different situations where visitors would want a motel. Visiting professionals come to the county to do business at places such as schools and banks. Corporate representatives come to visit local operations. Some Lake Hope State Park visitors may want a motel option. Those working on construction projects need a place to stay. Major local events such as festivals, the county fair, high school graduations and fall-foliage viewing should all attract visitors.

The commissioners also are working on an Internet Broadband Plan primarily to serve residents and businesses in Swan and surrounding townships, which would also be especially beneficial to tourism businesses such as Ravenwood Castle and the On Guard Facility which attract high-end customers.

Vinton County Health Dept.

Castle Owner Jim Reed has told The Telegram in the past he has lost business due to the lack of quality Internet access issues. Commissioner Satory also believes attracting guests who have more disposable income would result in other spending at local restaurants and stores.

Zaleski: Hub Of Future Tourism?

The Zaleski area was also on the minds of the commissioners as the community that is an important hub to the county's tourism development.

Zaleski leaders and boosters are focusing on attracting tourism-service businesses with a convenience store being a top priority. Commissioner Fout is hoping either an entrepreneur or a chain operator will choose to locate a store there. Zaleski Council members and Mayor Craig Walkerow have been sending informational packets to several prospective operators in the area.

"Zaleski really needs a convenience store because they are 10 miles from the nearest gas station," said Fout.

The commissioners also believe the marketing effort for the Moonville Rail Trail and Tunnel have been successful and the planned building of three more bridges will bring more tourists to the village and county.

The Moonville Halloween Party draws approximately 3,000 people and there are also hikes, racing events, hunting and nature attractions to draw visitors to the area.

At this point, the Vinton County Commissioners are definitely seeing tourism as a tax-and-jobs driver for the county as visitors come to enjoy the beauty and rural heritage of the county.

Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, March 12, 2018
Article comment by: Theresa Nicholson

Hello, I like the idea of having a hotel because when I come visit the area to do genealogy, I am forced to stay in Lancaster. Itís inconvenient. However, I would not build it up to much and take away from the beauty of the area.

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