The Botetourt County Office of Tourism received the Shining Example Award in the category “Tourism for Tomorrow” from the Southeast Tourism Society at its meeting in Greenville, S.C. on September 8.
The Shining Example Awards highlight the best work in travel and tourism across a 12-state region.
This award recognizes the accomplishments of a destination in the realm of sustainable tourism, promoting tourism development while safeguarding local culture and/or protecting the environment. Last year’s winner in this category was the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.
Botetourt launched its first official tourism website in 2007. That same year, it published a visitor’s guide and began running a series of print advertisements. Since then the Office of Tourism has launched several additional initiatives including:
• The Wine Trail of Botetourt County, a collaborative effort between the county and three family-run wineries. Each winery offers tours, tastings and special events throughout the year. Promotional material includes a brochure, website, advertising and social media.
• The Downtowns of Botetourt, which highlights the county’s three incorporated towns of Fincastle, Troutville and Buchanan. The initiative began with a landing page and some print advertising and will expand to include more website content and a brochure.
• The Upper James River Water Trail promotes responsible recreation on the James River, which is considered one of Botetourt’s greatest natural treasures. The Upper James River Water Trail campaign, which has already earned a national award for creativity, consists of a series of print ads, a brochure/map, and a website that offers trip planning information.
Botetourt County Tourism Coordinator Kevin Costello accepted the award saying, “We believe that we can preserve our scenic treasures and quality of life while sharing them with visitors at the same time.”
Creative work on all of the tourism initiatives was done by Inprint, a Vinton-based branding and design agency that specializes in tourism and destination marketing.
Inprint co-owner and President David Mikula said, “Botetourt County has done an incredible job of promoting tourism. This Shining Example Award shows that vision, marketing savvy and creativity can accomplish great things.”