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Editorial: Expanded showing of tourism channel helps boost region

May. 18, 2013 @ 12:11 AM

An obvious tenet in selling any product is first making potential buyers aware of it and its benefits, particularly people who may have a built-in interest.

In terms of carrying out that idea, the Cabell Huntington Convention and Visitors Bureau is on target by expanding its CVB-TV tourism channel, a continuously looped channel of tourism videos, local weather and information. The bureau has been busy arranging to have the channel shown in places where it makes most sense: the region's hotel rooms and other public places such as Tri-State Airport.

That's a good investment because it could lead to bringing more visitors to Cabell County, which already sees a sizable benefit from travelers stopping by or passing through the Tri-State.

The West Virginia Division of Tourism says travelers spent $133 million in Cabell County in 2010 on lodging, attractions, gas, food and other purchases. That supported more than 1,500 jobs and generated more than $10 million in local and state tax revenue. Those numbers show that tourism remains an important piece of the local economy and is worth supporting.

And that is what CVB-TV does. Its roots go back to a one-time video collaboration between Trifecta Productions of Huntington and the CVB as a way to showcase the region in advance of and during the 2009 U.S. Youth Soccer Region 1 Championships, which drew an estimated 20,000 people to the area. It grew from there, with a pilot project two years ago at the Red Roof Inn. Now, the channel can be seen in about 1,500 local hotel rooms, promoting local attractions, such as Camden Park amusement park and the Heritage Farm Museum and Village, as well as restaurants and shopping destinations.

In other words, the channel lets travelers know about all the gems in our region.

With CVB-TV, the visitors bureau has taken a big step in making the local tourism industry even stronger.

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