|Wednesday, Jun 1, 2011|
On May 19th, Morristown NHP partnered with a number of historical sites and museums from the Morris County area to hold "Morris County: A Rally for Tourism," the region's first-ever celebration of heritage tourism.
More than 100 people, including representatives from the tourism industry, press and VIPs, attended the rally. Jill Hawk, superintendent of Morristown, highlighted the economic benefits of having a national park in a community.
"For every dollar spent by the federal government, four dollars are brought into the community," she said. "This equates to 14.3 million dollars brought into Morris County in 2009 through tourism related to Morristown National Historical Park."
Also in attendance at the event was Phyllis Oppenheimer, a tourism representative with the state Division of Travel and Tourism. Oppenheimer echoed Hawk's comments and noted that $35.5 billion was generated in New Jersey through tourism last year. This was a small increase from the 2009 figure, showing growth even in a bad economy.
Historical sites, museums and other non-profit groups highlighted their sites through displays in the auditorium of the Washington's Headquarters Museum. Many historic sites represented their time period by bringing presenters in period clothing. The Ford Mansion was inhabited throughout the event by a number of costumed interpreters and volunteers and tours of the mansion were provided. Jude Pfister, chief of cultural resources at Morristown, also brought out a few special items from the collection, including an 1830 edition of the Revolutionary War memoir of Joseph Plumb Martin, A Private Yankee Doodle.
The day provided a forum for many members of the tourism industry and the press to network and become familiar with the diverse number of attractions that Morris County has to offer.
"We all work well, but we are stronger together," Hawk said.