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State’s efforts shine spotlight on Boulder City

In a day in the life of a Boulder City resident, he or she is so involved with tasks and daily activities that they probably wouldn’t think about how the state advertises Nevada to the nation and around the world. However, for some volunteers and state employees, this is at the top of their to-do list. Much like individual business owners budget and plan their advertising campaigns each year, the state of Nevada does so as well.

This past week, the Commission on Tourism for the state of Nevada held its quarterly commissioners’ meeting, sharing an informative discussion on what those marketing efforts looked like in 2020 and their efficacy, as well as some initial planning for 2021/22.

They also released their fiscal year 2020 annual report where Lt. Gov. Kate Marshall was quoted as saying, “Communities in rural Nevada have fared better during the pandemic, with visitors seeking unique outdoor experiences, in our vast open spaces.” She continues sharing interesting stats that, “July through September 2020 shows that rural Nevada room tax collections are down only 8 percent while Clark County and Washoe County room tax collections are down about 65 percent and 35 percent, respectively.”

Obviously, we are all hurt by these great losses throughout the whole state, however we are grateful for the leadership of the lieutenant governor in recognizing that rural communities are contributors and their importance is evident. Boulder City has added value to our beautiful open spaces with both natural and organized recreational opportunities.

Our community has been included in many of the recent state publications, social media campaigns and internet target-marketing efforts. With the funds utilized to communicate what Nevada has to offer, coupled with the advertising dollars of each of the individual communities, we leverage the dollars spent on encouraging visitation to Nevada.

In the 2019 legislative session, a new division was created within the state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Colin Robertson, administrator for the newly formed Nevada Division of Outdoor Recreation, was hired to assess, inventory, promote and protect the expansive outdoor recreational assets that Nevada proudly possesses. He has made great strides and recognizes the enhanced opportunities his division will create for Nevada.

Robertson has shared his appreciation of the vast recreational assets Boulder City has and we look forward to continuing to support him at his scope of work that includes goals like finding funding for trail improvements, recreational safety and education, as well as promotion. He will also assist in cultivating areas of interest that have not yet had a focused approach on improvement and development.

An example is a comprehensive mapping system that is user-friendly for hikers and bikers, as well as educational information for wildlife and dark skies viewing.

Robertson was recently successful in his development and promotion of SB 52 creating a standardized program for dark sky designated communities around Nevada. Boulder City was used as an example in his testimony to the state Senate of an excellent location to appreciate nonlight-polluted viewing areas and a gateway to the Lake Mead National Recreation Area, where dark sky viewing can be at its best. We are excited to soon apply for this official designation once this bill is fully passed and the program is created.

Boulder City has also been very engaged with state historic preservation resources that will prove to bring guests to experience and appreciate the stories of Boulder City’s past that are told in our streetscapes, structures, parks and people. Just a month ago, when helping a resident find the link to the Historic Preservation Committee’s survey, I had the great pleasure to visit with a young lady who arrived in Boulder City in 1941.

Her memory was sharp and with her wit quick, she enlightened me with stories of the 1941 business scene. She shared that Jack’s Place was an optometrist’s office and Tony’s Pizza was her family’s bakery. She loved finding old Boulder Dam information in the walls of those buildings when they remodeled. She also told me about the chicken coops and Mrs. Browder’s car that were in the alley between their buildings where now we can sit at the beautiful Big T’s Cantina.

She had a lift in her voice when she shared with me that business then was a family operation and while she shared her entrepreneurial spirit, I could almost smell all the treats baking. I took notes to help me keep those treasured tidbits preserved. Much like the maps and documents housed in the archives of the Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum, I’ll keep those fun facts in my heart and shared with locals, business owners, and guests of Boulder City for generations to come.

Jill Rowland-Lagan is the CEO of the Boulder City Chamber of Commerce.

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