Welcome Center managers to point people to Troy

Published 3:00 am Thursday, September 27, 2018

As the first points of contact with more than 6 million visitors each year, Alabama’s Welcome Centers greet travelers with true Southern hospitality.

And the managers of the eight Alabama Welcome Centers make sure that visitors leave with a positive impression of Alabama.

“The managers assist Alabama’s visitors and provide them with information about events and attractions in their areas,” said Shelia Jackson, Troy tourism director. “We wanted the managers of Alabama’s Welcome Centers to know about Troy and all that we have to offer. And the best way for them to know was to come see.”

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

At Jackson’s invitation, the managers of the Alabama Welcome Centers visited Troy on Thursday and were given a tour of all the city has to offer.

“It was a very beneficial day in that the managers can now go back and tell visitors about all the great things Troy has and they can do it convincingly because they have been here and done that,” Jackson said.

Bill Hopper, director of the Johnson Center for the Arts, said having the Alabama Welcome Center managers visit Troy will play dividends, literally, down the road at the eight welcome centers: Ardmore, Baldwin, Cleburne, DeKalb, Grand Bay, Houston, Lanett and Sumter.

“The managers were able to experience much that our city has to offer, from the Pioneer Museum of Alabama to downtown Troy, to Troy University and the university’s International Arts Center, the Janice Hawkins Park and, of course, the Johnson Center for the Arts,” Hopper said.

“At the Johnson Center for the Arts, we had the opportunity to talk with the managers about the vision a group of Trojans had back in 2000 that became a reality when the doors of the old Troy Post Office opened as a center for the arts.”

Hopper said the Alabama Welcome Centers’ managers had an opportunity to view and experience the current exhibits in the upper and lower galleries and gain awareness of the quality of exhibitions at the JCA.

Hopper said now the managers will not just be saying Troy has an outstanding arts center.

“They can speak from personal experience and word of mouth is powerful advertising,” he said.

Jackson said Troy did itself proud when the Alabama Welcome Center managers were “welcomed” to Troy.

“The year 2019 is Alabama’s Bicentennial and the Alabama Bicentennial Committee has asked that each community tell its stories,” she said. “Alabama’s Welcome Center managers can now help us tell Troy’s stories.”