BUCKHANNON – The new executive director of the Upshur County Convention and Visitors Bureau hopes the newly created hotel committee will improve communication between members of the hospitality industry and the CVB.
Executive director of the Upshur County CVB Lacy Ramsey attended the July 27 Upshur County Commission meeting to deliver the annual CVB report.
“I began this job in April, so I’ve been here for just a few months, but I started creating databases of places to stay, places to eat, places to shop, houses of worship, places to meet and all of that has already been very handy,” Ramsey said. “I’m working on having all of those things streamlined so they’re easily accessible, or I’m able just to print something off quickly to share with people who come in the office.”
She said the first problem she wanted to tackle was the lack of communication between the CVB and the hotel/motel property owners and managers.
“Our board has decided to create a hotel committee, and we’ve met with them once,” Ramsey said. “We want to keep those communication lines open with them to see where they are slow and how we can help fill those gaps. We’ve had one meeting so far; we do plan to have some more.”
The CVB wants to investigate utilizing the Upshur County Regional Airport and possibly organizing excursions to help bring more visitors to Buckhannon.
“I spoke with [Upshur County Regional Airport Manager] Jennifer Powers at the airport to see if there’s a way we can utilize that space to help with the hotels, to bring people in and do overnight excursions,” Ramsey said. “We put a pause on those plans lately, but we have been in touch, and we will communicate or continue on with those communications.”
Ramsey also plans to lay out a schedule so the CVB office on Main Street is open during events.
“Tammy [Reger, Buckhannon-Upshur Chamber of Commerce executive director] and I both have worked together to try to find a schedule that works, so at least during events when we’ll have a lot of traffic on Main Street, we will keep it open, and we’ve done a pretty good job,” Ramsey said. “We were open for Strawberry Festival; I will say Laura (Meadows, former CVB director) came back and stepped in for us on that because I was busy with obligations, and I was there for the BBQ Bash. Tammy was there for some of that, and we were open every evening and all-day Saturday for WAMSB.”
Over the past year, the CVB website also saw about 35,000 visits, over 11,000 social media engagements, 1,300 newsletters sent out and approximately 40 different events were held at the Event Center at Brushy Fork.
“I don’t have an exact number on those events because, as you know, the event center has split off, and that went to the city,” Ramsey said. “I tried to go back through and see all the different things that were booked online, so that’s an approximated number.”