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Opening Arguments

Flat in Brown County

Perhaps we need to be careful not to expect tourism to boost our economy too much in the coming years. One of the state's top destinations is having troubles:

The town of Nashville provides a window to craftsmen and culture, but as Brown County celebrates its centennial as the arts colony of the Midwest and celebrates its founders, tourism has taken a downturn. The number of visitors has gone flat.

"We have figures showing a decline at Brown County State Park. We have food and beverage figures indicating the past two years have been in decline," said Warren Cole, Convention & Visitors Bureau Chairman

[. . .]

"I don't know if I have a specific thing to attribute it to. The competition for any tourist destination in the state of Indiana is much greater than it used to be," said Cole.

To better track tourism in Brown County, they plan to start a research study, something they haven't done here in about five years.

If a place like Brown County has to resort to the bureaucrats' favorite too -- a research study -- things must be grim. I might know part of the problem. I used to go there a lot but gradually cut back on my trips over the years. The place is still gorgeous, but many of the arts and crafts have been pushed out by shops all selling the same kind of cheap junk from Taiwan.

Posted in: Hoosier lore