Small towns are full of character and characters, and that’s what makes travel across this country so great. Meeting interesting people, trying new restaurants, exploring the unknown and learning a little about an area are the reasons I enjoy being a tourist.
However, when you meet a tourist in your own town, are you excited to tell them about your community, or do you struggle to find something nice to say?
You can be an advocate for your town, and if you are, the economic impact is beneficial to all.
So, how can you be an advocate of your town? First, you need to become a tourist, and here are a few ways to make that happen:
1. Visit the local museum or historical sites. Most towns have a museum or two, and some have historical landmarks. You may be amazed at what you learn. For instance, the first time I visit my town’s museum I learned that the region used to be covered in cherry orchards. This was news to me, and explained why the community celebrates a Cherry Pie Festival every summer.
2. Try a new restaurant. We all have our favorite hometown eatery and often we fear branching out and trying something new. But if you don’t stretch your taste buds a little, you won’t know everything your town has to offer. The new bistro down the street may have the best eggs benedict in the world, but if you don’t try it out, you’ll never know.
3. Visit your town’s parks. Driving by a park every day is a very different experience than stopping and sitting down on a bench for a little while. This summer, make a point to go on picnics in your town’s parks. We lived in our community for several years before discovering a renowned sculpture park, and now we always take visitors there to share this amazing place with them.
4. Visit your Visitor Center. Sound strange? It is very possible there are interesting things about your community you haven’t yet discovered. It’s also helpful to know how your town is being branded, and this all happens at the Visitor Center.
5. Attend a festival or event. A local celebration is the perfect way take to the pulse of a community. Every town is different and often a festival is where you can identify the uniqueness.
Once you start looking at your town through new eyes, you’ll recognize that you live in a delightfully interesting place, thereby enabling you to become an advocate for your town. When citizens feel proud of their community it leaks into their speech and actions, and speaking with optimism about your town does have a positive impact on your town’s economy.
“The word on the street” has more sway than ever before because the Internet and social media have made “the street” a lot bigger. How you feel about your community does matter and people are listening.
Become an advocate for your town today, and become part of a thriving community.
Note: Should you wish to reprint this article at no charge, please contact TheMayor@HeidiTown.com.
It’s Buy Local Week here in Colorado, and around the country. There are so many reasons why it’s good to buy local, and according to ColoradoLocalFirst.com, there are five main reasons.
1. Environment By buying things closer to home you are cutting down on fossil fuel use, reducing your carbon impact AND saving money!
2. Local Economy Local businesses buy more often from other local businesses, so the money you spend is retained in the community in a more concentrated fashion.
3. Local Flavor The experience at a local establishment is unique – providing the local flavor of the area.
4. Community Care Local entrepreneurs are more connected to our community, because they live here, too! They are more likely to get involved in community efforts and activities.
5. Voicing Your Opinion By buying locally you are saying, “Hey, I like this business and the neighborhood wouldn’t be the same without it.”
So without further ado, to celebrate Buy Local Week here on HeidiTown, I’ve joined forces with a local Colorado company, LoyalTee, a Denver-based t-shirt company. LoyalTee is a collection of shirts featuring local landmarks, like Johnson’s Corner, Stadium Inn, and Duranglers Fly Fishing, to name a few.
All LoyalTee shirts are made in the USA, and a percentage of all sales goes to the business feature on the shirt. I absolutely love this company and their concept, so I was very happy when they decided to be a part of a HeidiTown contest.
In addition to getting a $23 gift certificate and free shipping to LoyalTee, the lucky winner of this contest will also get a HeidiTown t-shirt!
Just leave me a comment telling me your favorite Colorado landmark and you’ll be entered. As usually, I will pick the winner (at random) on Friday afternoon, Dec. 2, 2011, at approximately 3 p.m.
It’s hard for me to pick just one favorite Colorado landmark, but today I think I’ll go with the Bucksnort Saloon. I love that the Bucksnort is located up a long dirt road. I love their un-level floors, and I especially love their forest fire burger with jalapenos and cream cheese.
~ Contest Closed ~