INDEPENDENCE COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - The Independence County Chamber of Commerce is trying to get more people involved in promoting tourism in the county.
The chamber is developing a new Experience Independence Hospitality Training Program that will target employees of local restaurants and stores in the county.
"When visitors come to town they don't get to speak to me, they get to speak to that gas station attendant or their waiter or waitress and so by educating those employees about what the area has to offer, we're able to reach that visitor in a whole different way," Tourism Director Kyle Christopher said.
So, they will be meeting with dining, retail, and lodging employees who come in contact with out-of-town visitors to teach them how to encourage people to spend more time and money in Independence County.
Christopher said people who have lived in the area for a long time may forget about the recreational opportunities available to tourists.
"What we want to avoid if someone asks, 'what's there to do around here,' is nothing," Christopher said. "And I think we're even going to be able to open their eyes to make them appreciate the area more."
The chamber will be working with a team of three interns from Lyon College to set up the training on local attractions and visitor questions.