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The Westmoreland County Tourism Council met last Wednesday with the Studio Ammons, de-signers of the upscale new Internet website designed to promote tourism. The PowerPoint presentation delivered by Terry Ammons explored the webpage offerings as they appear online.
The $25,000-plus effort initiated approximately two years ago was largely funded with grant monies obtained from the Virginia Tourism Corporation. Westmoreland Tourism Council Chair Doug Flemer described the result on Wednesday as “a new and exciting, innovative thing.”
Flemer expressed optimism that the site directly linked to the “Virginia is for Lovers” web ad-dress “will encourage visitors to come to Westmoreland County, stay for a couple nights, do some touring and then go back to Northern Virginia.”
The first frame that appears on the www.visitwestmorelandva.org web page is alive with shifting photographs of subjects familiar to local residents. On the lower right portion of the screen is a block of narrative crafted to entice site visitors to activate the “enter here” link that provides access to more detailed particulars.

“Historic Westmoreland County, Virginia lies between the Rappahannock and the Potomac Rivers, anchoring Virginia’s Northern Neck region, an easy drive from Washington DC, Fredericksburg and Richmond,” the narrative begins.
“Explore the scenic byways of Westmoreland on your way to our wineries while exploring the small-town charm of eastern Virginia’s Tidewater.
“Visit the historic sites of our founding fathers George Washington and James Monroe and the Lee family home of many more of our nation’s leaders, at Stratford Hall.
“Watch the sunrise from the cliffs at Westmoreland State Park, dine in one of our local restaurants in Colonial Beach, Montross or Kinsale. Then enjoy a sunset after picking your own fresh berries at Westmoreland Berry Farm.
“There’s MORE in WESTMORELAND.”
The second frame on the new site contains a map of Westmoreland that includes the two rivers and the nearby jurisdictions. The Westmoreland map contains a scattering of icons and a live link chart to use for exploring those local offerings.
The set of icons represent such specific interest sets as history and culture, wine, water, outdoors, and tours and trails.
The site was described by its creators last Wednesday as being comprised of two central components — map and calendar. The calendar can be linked with the map during any search of up-coming events.
The site’s base map identifies seven primary destinations in Westmoreland County — Colonial Beach, George Washington Birthplace, Westmoreland State Park, Stratford Hall, Kinsale, Ingleside Vineyards and Westmoreland Berry Farm. The Town of Montross is represented as the Westmoreland County seat.
The Westmoreland County Tourism Council is still attempting to recruit the interest of local business establishments and private citizens in participating in the ongoing effort to increase tourist visitation.
“We need businesses and individuals that benefit from increased visitation to Westmoreland County … to become both active and involved with tourism initiatives in our county,” the Westmoreland County Tourism Council related in June 16 notice of last week’s meeting.
“All of us, to one degree or another” the notice then related, “depend on tourism for our livelihood, so participation and input from your business is needed.”
“While Westmoreland County continues their commitment to tourism as part of its overall economic development plan, it is imperative that businesses, through the Westmoreland County Tourism Council, show a commitment too through participation in meetings such as on June 30th.”
The notice advised contacts wanting additional information to call the visitors center at (804) 494-8440.

Betsy Ficklin

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