tourism

www.nps.gov / National Park Service

A National Park Service report released Sunday, details the economic benefits to Southern West Virginia last year. According to the report, tourism to the region’s national parks helped spur the economy by almost $70 million.

Caitlin Tan

This week on Inside Appalachia, we take off-the-beaten-path tour of some of the region’s alternative cultures and economies. We’ll visit a factory where workers are reviving the art of glassmaking. We’ll hear how farmers and chefs are returning to some of our old-fashioned recipes for inspiration and attempting to reshape our region’s economy in the process.


An inflammatory poster displayed outside of the House of Delegates’ chamber by participants of West Virginia GOP Day at the Capitol, launched a firestorm of remarks Friday morning. Just as the Speaker of the House called the body to order, Del. Mike Pushkin stood and launched what would be a series of remarks - Democrats condemning hate speech, while Republicans defending freedom of speech.

W.Va. Tourism event at the West Virginia Capitol on Nov. 14, 2018 celebrating the launch of Fallout 76.
Daniel Walker / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Tourism Day was recognized by the West Virginia Legislature this week. In light of that, we bring you a report on a video game that tourism officials believe makes a positive impact in bringing visitors to West Virginia. By now, you may have heard of Fallout 76 - the latest in the popular line of Fallout video games. It was released last fall with much fanfare by Gov. Jim Justice and the West Virginia Division of Tourism. West Virginia Public Broadcasting spoke with a local gamer, and we bring you this special look inside the video game.

It was the second day of a statewide teacher and service personnel walkout over a comprehensive education reform bill. We bring you up-to-date on the latest action, and we also bring you special reports on black lung-related legislation, economic development, and tourism.

The "Fallout Boy" stands in front of the West Virginia Capitol.
WV Tourism

Bethesda Game Studios' "Fallout 76" video game hit store shelves this week. West Virginia Tourism officials are hoping to promote the state to a wider audience with the game’s launch.

Lodge in Cacapon Resort State Park, Morgan County, W.Va., May 2008
Brian M. Powell / Wikimedia Commons

Gov. Jim Justice’s office made two announcements Friday all related to infrastructure in the Eastern Panhandle.

WV Governor's Office

The award-winning video game publisher Bethesda Softworks is launching a new online game set in post-nuclear West Virginia, and the West Virginia Tourism Office is partnering with the company to promote both the game and the state.

Steve Shaluta / West Virginia Division of Tourism

West Virginia officials say hotel occupancy has climbed from last year.

Gov. Jim Justice and other officials announced last week that statewide hotel occupancy grew around 16 percent in June from the same month in 2017. Officials say the growth produced a 20 percent revenue increase from a year earlier.

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, tourism is one of West Virginia’s largest industries, bringing in an estimated $4.5 billion in revenue and providing tens of thousands of jobs. Something that’s not so much of a challenge or concern for this industry is housing for the people who work in tourism.  Generally speaking, in West Virginia there’s ample affordable housing that is located near the state’s resorts and tourist destinations. But this isn’t the case in other parts of the country.

courtesy of Erin Board

An organizer says the U.S. Rafting Association's national whitewater championships will be held this fall on the New and Gauley rivers in West Virginia.

The Happy Retreat mansion in Charles Town, W.Va. Formerly the home of Charles Washington, founder of Charles Town and brother to President George Washington.
Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Happy Retreat is a historic mansion in Charles Town that was once the home of Charles Washington – founder of Charles Town and brother to the nation’s first president. Today, the house is becoming a hub for public events, community outreach, history and tourism.

ATV
aiisha / Dollar Photo Club

Plans are underway for a new multi-cottage resort in West Virginia that a developer says will cater to the needs of ATV riders.

Developer Todd Boggess tells The Bluefield Daily Telegraph that the ATV Outpost at Pocohontas is envisioned as a family friendly facility with 22 cabins, a restaurant, general store and more.

Elk, Standing Elk
Albert Herring / Wikimedia Commons

Officials in West Virginia are set to introduce 50 elk that were captured in Arizona.

Gov. Jim Justice and the state Division of Natural Resources are scheduled to hold a ceremony Tuesday at the Tomblin Wildlife Management Area near Logan.

A Covered Bridge Christmas

Nov 30, 2017
James Owston/ Alderson Broaddus University

Across West Virginia, many towns and cities will host Christmas parades and other holiday festivals in December. But only one town can claim to have a historic covered bridge in the backdrop of their festivities. Philippi is hoping to brand itself as a Christmas destination, with a historic twist. 

John Denver
RCA / AP Images

A song beloved by West Virginians will now represent the state across the country. The West Virginia Tourism Office is hoping the song will help promote the state.

The West Virginia Tourism Office says it has obtained rights to use the song "Take Me Home, Country Roads" in marketing and will begin this week.

Harpers Ferry, Jefferson County, W.Va. played a pivitol role during the American Civil War.
Mark Frickett / Wikimedia Commons

The small town of Harpers Ferry in the Eastern Panhandle is often referred to as a gateway into West Virginia. It was a prominent place during the American Civil War, and it was the site of John Brown’s Raid.

John Henry Memorial Park

Crowds gathered to watch the grand opening of a long-awaited West Virginia park.

News outlets report about 100 celebrants gathered Friday to watch the opening of the John Henry Historical Park in Talcott. The park will feature a John Henry statue, an interactive educational kiosk and a picnic shelter.

Medals, Medallions, Harpers Ferry
Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

There’s a group based in Jefferson County, West Virginia focused not only on improving health and wellness but also on incorporating the local community and history into that health experience.

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

The state’s three national parks in southern West Virginia saw more than one million visitors last year, resulting in a bump to the economies of the surrounding cities and towns. 

Eric Householder
Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The West Virginia Department of Commerce gave the House and Senate Finance committees a presentation Monday morning to explore the state's competitiveness in attracting businesses.

The Commerce department also asked for a significant increase in its funding. However, that request collided with the reality of the state’s dire budget situation.

Passion, Not Position

Jan 13, 2017

My service for the state I love has never been about a position; it’s always been about passion.

While I’ve been blown away by the calls, texts, emails, social media posts, and favorite candy sent (you can keep those goodies coming folks), the positive momentum we have created in the travel and tourism industry in West Virginia during the last two and a half years has never been just about me.

http://www.ForestWander.com [CC BY-SA 3.0 us (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/us/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons

Amateur astronomers are signed up to watch the sky over central West Virginia this weekend.

The third annual Calhoun Stargaze is set for Friday through Sunday at the Calhoun County Park in Grantsville. The park is known for its pitch-dark conditions for favorable nighttime viewing.

Jim Justice
Steve Helber / AP

Democratic gubernatorial nominee Jim Justice wants to make West Virginia a tourism mecca with plans to lure major horse racing and golf events to the state and establish theme parks and a gun shooting range.

Justice's campaign unveiled his tourism agenda on Tuesday.

Perry Bennett / West Virginia Legislative Photography

The House Judiciary has advanced a bill that would allow restaurants, wineries and distilleries to sell alcohol beginning at 10 a.m. on Sundays if county voters approve of the change through a referendum. 

As approved by the committee, though, the bill does not require county commissioners to hold elections to allow the sales, only permits such ballot measures. 

Its 1,700-foot arch made it the longest single-span arch bridge in the world.
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online. / New River Gorge, Fayette County, Fayette Station Road

While many state agencies were enduring cuts during the 2015 legislative session, the Division of Tourism actually saw an increase of about $4 million, totaling $7 million for the marketing and advertising budget. That money, however, was dedicated to creating and implementing a tourism marketing campaign titled “Real. Wild and Wonderful West Virginia".

Chiselbox.com

Matt Welsch, also known as the Vagabond Chef, has traveled all over the world experiencing culinary arts and food. You can find a taste of those travels at his restaurant, the Vagabond Kitchen, in Wheeling. Welsch recently took a 10-day motorcycle trip across the state of West Virginia. Over the course of 1500 miles, and throughout 39 counties, Welsch's objective was to connect and find other West Virginians who are passionate about cuisine, spirits, and celebrating the Mountain State in general.  The Vagabond Chef calls the trip “a true immersion experience.”


flybeckley.com

A West Virginia airport is beginning to offer weekly flights to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

Governor's Office

With millions of extra dollars for tourism, West Virginia is kicking off a marketing campaign to sell its story to surrounding states.

On Friday, state Tourism Commissioner Amy Shuler Goodwin announced the campaign titled "Real." The push is based on market research and features West Virginians talking about what their outdoorsy communities have to offer.

Goodwin said the campaign taps into part of $4.7 million extra in newly approved tourism marketing money.

West Virginia Legislature

Gov. Tomblin was joined by members of the state Legislature, Division of Tourism representatives and craft brewers from around the state for the ceremonial signing of two bills Monday.

He signed Senate Bill 581, transferring oversight of the state Courtesy Patrol from the Division of Tourism to the Division of Highways.

Some of the funding for the program though, about $4.2 million, will stay with the Division of Tourism to be used for a national and regional advertising campaign.

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