Tourism office opens at Mills
BY COREY DAVIS
Friday, November 9, 2018
Travelers who come to the Rocky Mount Mills who are curious to know more about what is happening in the area can conveniently walk over and grab a brochure or talk to staff at the Nash County Travel and Tourism now located at 1104 Falls Road.
A grand opening ribbon-cutting celebration sponsored by the Rocky Mount Area Chamber of Commerce that featured people throughout the community, food, drinks and prizes was held on Thursday to highlight Nash County Travel and Tourism being part of the 150-acre mixed use development on the Tar River. The agency relocated its operational headquarters and visitors outreach center and opened inside an 1,819-square-foot remodeled historic house on the Mills’ campus in August.
Barbara Green, executive director of Nash County Travel and Tourism, said the agency has had some walk-in traffic come by since opening during the summer. Nash County Travel and Tourism previously was located in a smaller space at the Helen P. Gay Rocky Mount Historic Train Station in downtown Rocky Mount.
The agency works with the county and city in promoting tourism in Nash County by publicizing events that will take place in the area and working with local hotels. Green said she especially has loved the front room when people come through the doors of office.
“We have a nice showroom space, and to have that availability for people to sit down, look at stuff, talk to them and showcase what Nash County has to offer is so great,” she said. “Before that, we didn’t have that in the other space and now we can showcase all the local products here in Nash County. We’ve got pictures of local landmarks surrounding the room and we’re going to have more pictures. We’ve got a conference room beside the showroom, great signage out front and we’re easily accessible from the highway.”
Nash County board Chairman Robbie Davis, who is also the chairman of the tourism development authority board, said the location has allowed Nash County Travel and Tourism to be in a very vibrant area in Rocky Mount.
“The new people is who we’re trying to capture that are in Rocky Mount visiting or either looking at Rocky Mount, so certainly having this location here works out well,” Davis said.
Russell Proctor, chairman of the Nash County Travel and Tourism Council, said relocating the office to the Mills campus was a natural fit as the move had been in the works for a couple years. The grand opening celebration that got postponed from October because of the threat of Hurricane Matthew coincided with the introduction of a new website, www.explorenashcounty.com.
“We have a lot better visuals and graphics than we had before,” Proctor said. “A lot of our counterparts have chosen ‘visit’ for their county or city, but we wanted to be different. We have the word ‘explore’ because we feel it’s invigorating and exciting and challenging to go out and explore. We chose that within the last two weeks, and we also adopted a new billboard campaign that people will see driving up and down (Interstate) 95.”
Proctor said the Rocky Mount Sports Complex has been a major factor in helping to promote and bring tourism to Nash County, which was a major catalyst for why the city decided to construct the Rocky Mount Event Center
“You will be surprised at the number of teams that come into the area,” he said. “With the Event Center, we will be able to attract sporting events year-round either indoors and outdoors — and that’s a major plus.”
Nash County Travel and Tourism office is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Proctor said the plan is to also open on the weekends in the near future.