For almost a year, the Anson County Chamber of Commerce has been planning an initiative to help market Anson County as a destination for tourists.
The effort initially started in response to the Democratic National Convention being held later this month in Charlotte. “It started out with that focus,” said Dr. Don Altieri, who was a member of the Destination Anson County planning committee. “But we’re also looking at how we can make Anson County a destination, not just a stop on the way to somewhere else.”
After about eight months of planning, the Chamber unveiled “Destination Anson County” at its Business After Hours July 24. Copies of the new brochure and post cards were on display. The brochure and post cards feature the photography of Thomas Cureton, and showcase some of Anson County’s most scenic sites, like Wadesboro’s Municipal Lake, Bethlehem Cemetery in Ansonville, the Gaddy Covered Bridge on the Pee Dee Wildlife Refuge near Ansonville, the Ansonia Theatre in Wadesboro, Blewett Falls Dam in Lilesville and many more.
The brochures include what’s called a UR code, which smartphone users can scan. The UR code will take you directly to the Discover Anson website, Altieri explained. “This way, if someone wants more information, they can scan it and this will take you right to it,” he said.
In addition to Altieri and Cureton, the committee included tourism director Dave Smith, Peachland Mayor Richard Allen, Chamber of Commerce executive director Lynn Edwards, retired Wadesboro Town Manager John Witherspoon, Anson County Manager Lawrence Gatewood, Lewis Evans and Ashlie Jones.
Along with the new brochures and post cards, the group also identified five “mini-visitor centers” that would provide tourist information on the county. Those five sites are: the Anson County Chamber of Commerce, 107 E. Wade St., Wadesboro; Allen’s General Store, 11389 U.S. Hwy. 74 W., Peachland; Peaches ‘n’ Cream, 2735 U.S. Hwy. 74 W., Wadesboro; The Old Store, 3944 Vintage Road, Lilesville; and Pee Dee Orchards, 11279 U.S. Hwy. 74 W., Lilesville.
Destination Anson County also played a big part in getting four new “Welcome to Anson County” signs that are now located at the county’s borders in Peachland, Ansonville, Lilesville and Morven, and the renovation of the Belk building facade in uptown Wadesboro. The committee is also working with the N.C. Department of Transportation to improve the appearance of U.S. 74 throughout Anson County.
Edwards said she’s particularly excited about the post cards, which also were used to decorate a cake at last Tuesday night’s reception. “I think it’s a great way to promote Anson County,” she said. “Visitors will see what we have to offer right here in Anson County.”