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Archive for April, 2022

Busy Agenda For Tourist/Recreation Focus Group

April 26th, 2022 Comments off

Potter County Tourism and Recreation Focus Group members heard updates on Denton Hill State Park, tourist promotion activities and a homegrown effort to revitalize Main Street in Coudersport during Monday’s bimonthly meeting. A Bureau of State Parks spokesman reported that a revised solicitation for business partners to revitalize Denton Hill State Park into a four-season recreation destination will soon be issued. Contract terms have been revised to cover anywhere from 10 to 35 years; the previous draft agreement was for 10 years. Also, bidders will no longer be required to operate a downhill skiing concession as part of their business plan, although they will be encouraged to do so.

Cori Wagner and Abigail Rossman told focus group members about a series of promotional events they and a handful of other downtown business operators have been holding to bring vibrancy and commerce to the county seat. Most recent of these was a “Wine Walk” involving five Main Street businesses that drew a large turnout. Wagner and Rossman said that although the activities are being organized independently, they have been conferring with Coudersport Borough and a representative of the faltering Coudersport Area Chamber of Commerce.

Also at Monday’s meeting, Pennsylvania Lumber Museum administrator Josh Roth reviewed last weekend’s Antique Show and Sawmill Run, which saw a record turnout numbering upwards of 800 people. Roth noted that the museum has added to its staff and is planning new public events. He added that visitor interest has been strong since the museum reopened after closing during the peak of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

Colleen Hanson, executive director of Visit Potter-Tioga, reported that interest in the region among tourists has reached a modern-day high, based on several of the agency’s measurements. More than 11 million people saw VPT advertisements on social media during the most recent accounting, and upwards of 5 million clicked a promotional posting to learn more. Requests for the agency’s Visitors Guides is at an all-time high, with upwards of 250 print or digital copies per day being requested.

Candace Hillyard, executive director of the Pennsylvania Route 6 Alliance, pointed out that there are opportunities for businesses to capitalize on the growing popularity of the region as a destination for bicycle enthusiasts. Details on the alliance’s Bike-Friendly Business Program are available here. Hillyard said the organization continues its promotion of a growing “Artisan Trail” pinpointing artists with businesses in close proximity to Rt. 6. The alliance also continues to make its case for State and National Scenic Byway designation for Rt. 6 in Pennsylvania. For details, click here.

Potter County Picked For National Pilot Program

April 24th, 2022 Comments off

Potter County is one of six locations selected nationwide for a yearlong pilot project to create a vibrant arts culture that can support community and economic development. Commissioner Paul Heimel and local musician and educator Arthur Metzger represented the county in the national kickoff for the “Creative Counties Placemaking Challenge: Arts & Culture as an Economic Driver” initiative, sponsored by Americans for the Arts. Potter County’s project involves the use of schools, libraries, artisans, local leaders and volunteers to integrate the arts into and tourism marketing and community planning. Last week’s kickoff will be followed by one-on-one tutorials with experts in the field to develop strategic plans. Each of the other five national pilot projects will be working on other strategies that could also benefit Potter County. These include:

  • Greenbriar County, W. Va., using the arts to promote rehabilitation, healing and recovery from addiction to alcohol and other drugs.
  • Puna Community, Hawaii, employing the arts to address poverty and strengthen a sense of community and appreciation for the local culture and environment.
  • LaCrosse County, Wisc., integrating the arts with other activities to raise awareness of the impact of climate change on rural communities.
  • Perry County, Ohio, using the arts to deepen appreciation for, and protection of, outdoor recreation and the environment.
  • Van Buren County, Mich., addressing mental illness and physical well-being with the arts, involving the court system, local governments and other partners.

Conservation District Movement Traced To Potter County

April 17th, 2022 Comments off

Potter County Commissioners Nancy Grupp, Barry Hayman and Paul Heimel honored the staff of the Potter County Conservation District while passing a resolution joining in the state legislature’s observance of April 10-16 as Conservation District Week. Potter County is the birthplace of the conservation district movement in Pennsylvania. For more than 75 years, PCCD has championed wise use of natural resources and support of agriculture, which remains the county’s leading industry. Commissioner Hayman (right), a member of the PCCD Board of Directors, presented the proclamation to district manager Jason Childs.

Volunteers Needed For Planned Community Garden

April 13th, 2022 Comments off

The Potter County Commissioners, together with UPMC Cole and Penn State Extension, are planning to create a Community Garden in downtown Coudersport this summer. Organizers are looking for one or more volunteers with gardening and organizational experience to manage the project. Please contact Barry Hayman at  bhayman@pottercountypa.net (814) 274-8290 ext. 201, or Mary Ann Rigas at rigasm@upmc.edu (814) 274-9198, if you are interested in this exciting volunteer opportunity. A county-owned lot on Water Street, adjacent to the Potter County Education Center, is being prepared for multiple raised garden beds.