Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV


February 11, 2013

‘Virginia is for Lovers’ — Slogan may be tourist boost for Bland

It’s no secret that “Virginia is for Lovers.” The popular slogan has been used as a tourism tool for the Commonwealth for many years. And now the Virginia Tourism Corporation is hoping to steer out-of-town vacationers to rural Bland County as part of their new “Love Hits the Road” campaign.

Bland County was one of only a handful of communities statewide that were selected to participate in the new tourism campaign.

The program capitalizes on the popular slogan: “Virginia is for Lovers,” and is designed to encourage Virginia vacationers to have their photographs taken at some or all of the “Love” sign sites across the Commonwealth. There are currently 26 locations — including Bland County — selected for the campaign.

Bland County officials will place their “Love” sign outside of the Wolf Creek Museum gift shop. The creation of the sign represented a total community effort, according to Sherri Dillow, general manager of the Wolf Creek Indian Village and Museum.

“One of our local businesses, ABB, created the two white feathers for the top of the sign and we had a competition in the schools to come up with a design for the sign,” Dillow said last week. “A Bland High School student, Kara Deaton, created the design. I think we really wowed the Virginia Tourism Corporation.”

Deaton, 16, a sophomore at Bland High School, said her mother inspired her to take up drawing, and says she has been drawing since she was about 6 years old.

The new “Love” sign will be unveiled during a ceremony scheduled for April 6.

“We are very thankful that the corporation included us in the program,” Dillow added. “This will draw even more attention to our museum, the Indian village and our county.”

The Wolf Creek Indian Village and Museum will open for the season with a 5-K run on March 23.

The selection of Bland County for the new tourism initiative is welcomed. Having the museum chosen as the site of the “Love” campaign should help to increase awareness and visitors to this unique local tourism attraction in our own backyard.

We applaud Bland County officials on their selection for the “Love” campaign, and look forward to the official kick-off of the local campaign this April. It is our hope that the new tourism initiative will help to steer out-of-town visitors to Bland County this summer.

There is much to see and do in our region, including the Wolf Creek Indian Village and Museum, and other nearby attractions in both Southwest Virginia and southern West Virginia.


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