Official: Regional tourism approach paying off

2013-09-23T19:58:00Z 2013-09-23T21:28:09Z Official: Regional tourism approach paying offBy Heather Augustyn Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
September 23, 2013 7:58 pm  • 

CHESTERTON | The town's investment in regional tourism is paying off, according to a local tourism official.

Lorelei Weimer, executive director of Indiana Dunes Tourism, spoke to the Chesterton Town Council on Monday night about Northern Indiana Tourism Development Commission.

The commission coordinates efforts of community tourism agencies in an area that stretches from Porter County to the Shipshewana area.

She talked about the many partnerships involved in advancing the group's mission to be an economic engine in northern Indiana, to do things together that each tourism bureau cannot do on its own.

“We had to get smarter and pull our resources together to get into the larger markets like Chicago, Michigan and Wisconsin,” she said, noting a $30,000 advertisement recently placed Midwest Living Magazine would never be affordable for one agency, but was funded through combined capital.

She said Porter County has gained tremendously through its partnership with the commission.

Also at the meeting, Town Engineer Mark O’Dell said he and Town Manager Bernie Doyle have put together a report identifying Chesterton’s livable neighborhood centers for future funding opportunities that may become available through NIRPC, and he asked the council for their review of the material.

“It is a threshold document. If there are monies available in the future and we don’t have it done, we can’t get the monies,” said council member Jim Ton, who serves on NIRPC’s executive board.

Fire Chief Mike Orlich reported he has issued a notice to the owner of a property at 536 Broadway to vacate and remove an unsafe building, but said the owner has not responded so he asked the council to act on it for the next meeting, and the council agreed.

The council unanimously agreed to allow the vacation of two public ways for town residents Roy Flaherty and Shawn Woodard.

The council also held a public hearing on the town’s 2014 proposed budget. No one spoke in favor or against and the budget will be voted upon at the next scheduled meeting.

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