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Making our region appealing

Last week, the Department of Development’s TourismOhio division reported 2021 was the second-best year for visitor spending — $47 billion, which the division says supported approximately 411,000 jobs.

“Whether you’re looking to do things a little low-key, whether you’re a foodie and you’re looking to explore different food scenes, really quite frankly what’s great about Ohio is just the variety of things to do,” said Ohio Department of Development Director Lydia Mihalik. “Ohio is a great place to visit because it’s easy to get to, but it’s also a really easy place to travel around. And there’s so much to see and to do, from traveling up to Amish Country or from traveling down to the Ohio River.”

Yes, traveling the Ohio River Valley is among the attractions for those considering whether to visit the Buckeye State.

It’s up to us to make sure visitors will find it worth the trip once they get here.

Sure, we know how wonderful our region is, and just how much we have to offer, but are we rolling out the welcome mat — particularly for visitors who might have decided to vacation a little closer to home with gasoline prices being what they are?

Ohio’s emergence as a travel destination that earns billions for its communities might take some getting used to.

But if we love it here so much, why shouldn’t visitors or vacationers?

The Belmont County Tourism Council already does great work promoting our region and inviting people to see what it has to offer. Let’s make sure each of us is doing our part to be hospitable, helpful and good ambassadors for our communities and state.

After all, we not only want travelers to make the trip, we want them to come back.

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