Come to Clinton County and enjoy our outdoors
LOCK HAVEN — When you think of Clinton County from a tourism and marketing standpoint, you think “green” – the outdoors and all of our natural resources. With close to 60 percent of the county being state land, opportunities to hunt, fish, hike and camp, are readily available. For people who want to get away, this is the place to come to.
“That’s certainly our opening line when we promote Clinton County,” says Chamber/Tourism Director Julie Brennan with the Clinton County Economic Partnership. “But where we take it from there depends on people’s interests, and people are pretty impressed to learn that we have a little bit of something for almost any interest.”
The Clinton County Visitor’s Bureau, part of the Partnership’s Tourist Promotion Agency, has hit the new year running as far as showcasing why our area is a great place to visit.
“So far, we’ve participated in three outdoor/travel/promotional shows, talking to hundreds of people and handing out information on Clinton County,” says Brennan, adding that there are another three shows on the schedule between now and late April. “People are really interested in all of the outdoor opportunities our area has to offer, and they’re also interested in what else might be happening during their visit. That’s where our promotional brochures are helpful.”
One of the Visitors Bureau’s key marketing ‘tools’ is the Clinton County Visitor Guide, which offers a good overview of the county, highlighting cultural and historical attractions, various outdoor adventures, hiking and ATV trails, scenic byways, state parks and lodging.
The Visitors Bureau also publishes an annual Clinton County Events booklet, which this year promotes nearly 400 local events and activities.
“Our 2019 Events booklet is great for out-of-town visitors as well as local people – everyone should have a copy,” says Brennan. “We want people to know there’s a lot going on in Clinton County. When I’m talking with people, the booklet makes it easy to earmark something they might want to participate in, for example, the ATV Cruise for a Cure ride in June, the Durty Dabbers Motorcycle Club’s Mototrials in August, a performance at Millbrook Playhouse, or one of the City of Lock Haven’s summer outdoor concerts. The events in the book draw people to the area.”
The Visitor Guide and Events booklet are widely distributed. Both are shipped to Pennsylvania’s 14 Welcome Centers, which see thousands of travelers every day. The Visitor Guide is available at several Rest Stops along both Interstate 80 and the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Guides are also mailed or electronically sent to more than 500 people every month, based on leads generated from advertising done by the Tourist Promotion Agency.
Brennan says the Visitor Guide and Events booklet are currently being mailed to the more than 2,000 people who own and lease camps in Clinton County.
“Having information on what’s going on locally encourages people to get out and participate in events, and could possibly bring people to their camp more often. We’ve already received some good feedback from people who appreciated receiving the information.”
Brennan also encourages people to sign up to receive a weekly email from the Visitors Bureau, highlighting “What’s Happening in Clinton County.”
“The ‘What’s Happening’ flyer is emailed to thousands of people every Tuesday and lists events and activities through the following Wednesday. It really has opened peoples’ eyes as to just how much is happening locally,” says Brennan, who says people can contact the Partnership office to sign up for the weekly email.
From a social media standpoint, the Clinton County Visitors Bureau Facebook page also draws a lot of interest to Clinton County happenings.
“We post information, photos and event updates regularly,” says Brennan. “Our video on the ‘Top 10 Things to See & Do in Clinton County’ has generated the biggest interest – more than 46,000 hits, but we also know that hundreds of people check out our posts all the time.”
New signage recently erected at the Partnership’s 212 North Jay Street, Lock Haven office, is making it easier for local and out-of-town visitors to find the Visitors Bureau. In addition, the building’s front entrance has been converted into a 24/7 info area where people can pick up brochures, maps, and dining and lodging information after hours and on weekends.
Brennan says the Visitors Bureau wants to work with local groups, organizations and businesses who are bringing in visitors or who have the potential to bring in visitors.
“No matter what the size of the group, we have the ability to turn a routine visit into a great visit, by providing welcome packets, giving guidance and answering questions about our area,” says Brennan. “Do you belong to a group that could hold a conference locally? Are you aware of a group that takes overnight trips? We’ve worked with groups in the past to make their visit special, and we’re working with several groups who are planning trips to our area this summer. Our office has the knowledge of the area to help assure people enjoy their stay. By making guests more aware of what we have to offer, they might extend their stay or come back another time. Either way, Clinton County has generated another friend.”