As we look forward to the holiday season, we can’t forget about the star in the East, East Texas that is. We take an in-depth look with officials in the area, about the holiday season’s effect on the local economy.
It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas throughout our area as communities in East Texas get ready for the biggest Tourism season of the year.
Geraldine Mauthe says,"Santa Claus is coming to town!"
Folk all around East Texas are getting into the holiday season. For a lot of towns, the holiday season is where they see the most of their tourism and that means a big economic boom for East Texas. Ed Michel is the director of the Marshall Convention and visitors bureau. Michel says, "The average visitor will spend 160 dollars when they're spending the night and that is important to us, we want those overnight visitors. But we don't discount those daytime visitors."
Michel also says both the overnight and day trip tourists brought more than 80 million dollars to Marshall last year, and most of that is during the holiday season.
"They're spending money when they stop at the gas stations, when they stop at the convenience stores, they're stopping at the other restaurants, so we know that they have an impact as well."
Hollis Shadden the president of Chamber of Commerce says, "Our tourism business is our main focus here in Jefferson, that's our biggest industry."
Just minutes away from Marshall; Jefferson, Texas is also a big holiday season destination spot. From the candle light tour of homes to the Christmas train. Many tourists just stop at one of the many popular bed and breakfasts and famous general stores, pumping more money into the Jefferson economy.
"There's plenty going on all through the Christmas season and we're looking forward to having a pretty good crowd of people come"