On Tuesday, April 25, employees from various Visitor Information Centers from across the state and employees of the Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism spent the day touring northern Logan County.
Stops on the tour included Paris, Cowie Winery and the Historic Arkansas Wine Museum in Carbon City and Subiaco Abbey. The group spend the night at The Lodge at Mount Magazine State Park before traveling to the Hot Spring area the next day.
Paris Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Tonya Varnell said the visitors were impressed by what they saw.
“They said they loved the entire experience,” Varnell said last week. “They came away impressed.”
The purpose of the tour is to familiarize VIC employees with various areas of the state so they can make suggestions to tourist.
“It was a real advantage for us to have them for the bulk of the day,” Varnell said. “They typically don’t spent that much time in a smaller town like Paris.”
While in Paris, the group visited the Eiffel Tower Park, placed locks, donated by East End Sports Pub, on the Love Lock Fence at the park, shopped downtown stores and used coupons donated by merchants, visited the Logan County Museum where they saw a hanging re-enactment, toured the Coal Miners Memorial and Museum had lunch at Cottontown Smokehouse and dinner at The Grapevine Restaurant. They also received a bag of gifts donated by local merchants.
“The Grapevine and Cottontown Smokehouse donated the meals,” Baumgartner said. “They also got a loaf of bread from The Grapevine. They were impressed with both restaurants and the quality of the food.”
Baumgartner said the visitors were very familiar with Mount Magazine State Park, but not that familiar with Paris and the surroudning area.
“That changed after this visit,” she said. “They know what’s here now so I think we’re going to wind up getting some visitors because of what they experienced on this trip.”