Group from Lewis and Upshur counties to travel to North Carolina for economic and tourism workshop

BUCKHANNON — A team of community leaders from Lewis and Upshur Counties, West Virginia, has been selected to participate in the 2022 Appalachian Gateways Community Initiative program.

This month, the Lewis and Upshur regional collaborative team will travel to a three-day planning workshop in Lake Junaluska, North Carolina to represent Appalachian West Virginia. The team will be working to leverage natural and cultural assets in the Mountain Lakes region to create economic opportunity and sustainably grow tourism within the region.

Teams must consist of a mix of leaders from varying backgrounds, including arts and natural resource management. The Lewis and Upshur regional collaborative team is composed of community leaders and members of Create Buckhannon, Lewis County First, County Commission, local Economic Development Authorities, Blueprint Communities, the Colonial Arts Center, and the Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Leaders are committed to working together through a regional approach to develop assets to enhance livability for residents and increase tourism, as Route 33/Corridor H is a major access point to the Monongahela National Forest region for visitors.

Eight teams were selected from across the Appalachian region through a competitive application process. Other West Virginia teams include Fayetteville/Fayette County and the New River Gorge Regional community collective. This initiative is supported by the Appalachian Regional Commission, the National Endowment for the Arts, and The Conservation Fund.

To learn more about this initiative and past Gateways Communities teams, visit:

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