Busy season is coming at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino, and management there is working to get all hired up for summer.
Melanee Lester has been sorting through a 4-inch-high stack of applications on her desk for the last couple of weeks, trying to get Mast General Store fully staffed for the long tourism season ahead.
It happens like clockwork every year. As the calendar creeps toward May, the roads get crowded, lines at the grocery store get longer, and the wait for a table on Friday night mounts. Right on cue, tourist season arrives, seemingly overnight.
• Hospitality help is hard to find
• Tourism’s future in the hands of frontline workers
• BRNHA tackles the $50,000 question of hospitality training
• Casino strategizes to keep good hires on board
It’s a conundrum the best minds in tourism have been trying to crack for decades.
Jackson County is on its way to becoming the trout capital of North Carolina after county leaders unveiled a plan last week that’s been in the works since last summer.
“Anything that we can do to encourage tourists to come to Jackson County we ought to try to do, and I think we already recognize that we have this remarkable resource in Jackson County — the public waterways. It’s already being utilized and is such a treasure in Jackson County,” said County Commission Chairman Brian McMahan, who spearheaded the effort with Jackson County Chamber of Commerce Director Julie Spiro. “It just makes sense to try to do what we can to further enhance it and to promote it.”
There was a palpable sense of excitement in the air when Maggie Valley first unveiled its town center master plan. But with a couple of weeks to mull it over, some business owners are concerned the plan may have unintended and adverse consequences.
Alderwoman Heidi Woodard’s motion for the town to abandon the right-of-way on Fry Street was met with silence at Monday night’s Bryson City board meeting, but town leaders say that doesn’t mean the issue is dead.
After four years of hibernation, Cherokee’s plan to build a one-of-a-kind family adventure park is back on the table.
When small towns think and act big, amazing things can happen. Anyone who has traveled has come across communities that have taken risks and been rewarded for it, vibrant small towns that are just fun to visit.
I think the town center plan currently being studied in Maggie Valley fits that description.
The primary visitor center for Haywood County will be moving this spring from downtown Waynesville to Maggie Valley.