Lewis & Clark Historic Trail
Lewis & Clark Were Here…
Follow Their Footsteps
RISING SUN/OHIO COUNTY, IND: Jim McDaniel, president of the Ohio County Convention, Tourism, and Visitors Commission (Ohio County Tourism) and executive director Kendal Miller attended a meeting of the Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail Geotourism Coalition in Cincinnati recently.
As of May 2019, the Lewis and Clark Historic Trail was extended by 1200 miles starting at the Ohio River in Pittsburgh, PA, and now including the states of Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington and Oregon.
Working with the National Park Service, The Lewis and Clark National Historical Trail is creating a Geotourism online travel guide. Defined by Travel Writer Jonathan Tourtellot, geotourism is “Tourism that sustains or enhances the geographical character of a place—its environment, culture aesthetics, heritage, and the well-being of its residents.”
The National Park Service staff is working with partners and communities to integrate the new trail extension with the existing trail and continues to build strong state and local partnerships. The program is designed to assist communities with economic development through tourism development and promotion, while engaging residents to see the Trail as a resource and an asset.
“Working with our new partners is an important first step,” said Trail Superintendent Mark Weekley. “We are excited to include the rest of the story of this renowned journey with the additional 1200 miles of trail. Our new partners will be integral to the trail’s future.”
Miller was contacted by the communication staff from Solimar International in Washington, D.C. recently in regards to Ohio County Tourism partnering with the Park Service by becoming a member of the Lewis & Clark Community Partnership Program. Because of Ohio County/Rising Sun’s proximity to the Ohio River, Ohio County Tourism was a perfect fit for a partnership with the extended Lewis and Clark National Historical Trail.
“Solimar found Rising Sun/Ohio County especially attractive as a partner since tourists will find different experiences in our area than what they would in a larger locale,” said Miller.
The recent meeting in Cincinnati was attended by staff from the National Park Service, OKI of Cincinnati, River City Paddle Sports, Solimar International and others.
“A win-win scenario for everyone involved, this sustainable tourism program is to help travelers find unique local tourism experiences along the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail,” Miller said.
Ohio County Tourism is now recognized as a member of the Lewis & Clark Community Partnership Program. In turn, Miller nominated their Visitors Center as a Lewis & Clark Historical Trail Sustainable Tourism Participant along with all of Ohio County’s annual events.
The Partnership encourages sites, tourist attractions, tourism-related businesses and events to nominate themselves or others to be included on the online travel guide of the Trail. Nominations “will help tell the stories along the Trail, from ancient times to the sites, attractions, and businesses that make the region unique today.” Accepted applicants become Lewis & Clark Historical Trail Sustainable Tourism Participants. There are no fees to sign up, participate or to be included on the website.
Lewis & Clark information was released to Rising Sun Main Street to help relay the opportunity to downtown businesses to become Historical Trail Sustainable Tourism Participants. Tourist-related attractions, activities, experiences distinctive to the town or region are also encouraged to nominate themselves as a Tourism Participant. For more information, log on to www.lewisandclark.travel.com.
Once the Lewis & Clark website is filled with information from all of its partners, an official launch date will be publicized.
For more information, contact Kendal Miller, Ohio County Tourism executive director at (812) 438-4933 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.