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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Jun 28, 2017

Pathfinders recognized for contributing to Iowa’s multi-billion tourism industry

May 09, 2017
PHOTO SUBMITTED Diana Hughell, project coordinator for the Historic Hills Scenic Byway, left, and Anna Bruen, Pathfinders’ executive director, celebrate Iowa Tourism Week by using #thisisiowa.

In honor of National Travel and Tourism Week, the Iowa Tourism Office recognized Pathfinders Resource Conservation & Development recently for contributing to the state’s $8.06 billion tourism industry.

National Travel and Tourism Week started Sunday and continues through Saturday. Now in its 34th year, it unites communities across the country to celebrate what travel means to employment, economic growth and personal well-being.

“We value and appreciate our partners for the work they do year-round to enhance the state’s economy through tourism,” said Shawna Lode, manager of the Iowa Tourism Office. “We’re taking this special week to recognize communities, events, attractions, restaurants and lodging facilities in all 99 counties and thank them for those efforts.”

“We support economic development and tourism in eight counties in Southeast Iowa. There are many gems to visit and return to: parks, businesses, museums, B&Bs, many of them located along the Historic Hills Scenic Byway,” said Anna Bruen, executive director at Pathfinders RC&D. “We’re honored to be able to work with both individuals and groups on the local and state levels to make Iowa a vibrant place to live.”

Travel is an integral part of the state’s economy because people who visit Iowa annually generate more than $450 million in state tax revenue that pays for programs that benefit residents. The industry also supports the jobs of more than 67,000 Iowans – jobs that can never be outsourced to another location.

In addition to its benefits for the local economy, travel can also have a positive effect on personal well-being for residents of and visitors to Iowa. Numerous research studies have confirmed the positive health effects of travel and time off, from reducing the risk of heart disease to decreasing depression. Using time off to travel with family is good for everyone, especially children – kids who travel with their families are more likely to attend college and earn more as adults.

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