GALLIPOLIS — Last year, Gallipolis was announced twice that it would be recognized for its hometown culture and assets, but that’s not stopping the Gallia County Convention and Tourism Bureau for pushing for further recognition and improvement in Gallipolis.
According to the bureau’s Executive Director Amanda Crouse, the bureau has been creating a video focusing on Gallipolis in hopes of being chosen by the HGTV coming show called Hometown Takeover to improve the area for residents, businesses, visitors and organizations. The show is slated to air in 2021 and will reportedly have six episodes.
“This is something new and the first year they’re doing it,” said Crouse. “This is not just for Ohio. Anybody in the United States can apply and tons of people already have. They focus on the historical attractions, homes and areas that need facelifts, renovations and improvements. Each town has to submit a video, photos and written content to apply… If we would win, they would come in and do renovations, facelifts, exterior, interior of these places.”
Crouse said the bureau attempted to highlight areas of town that might not have received as much exposure in the public eye over the last few years. Some organizations Crouse mentioned included the John Gee Black Historical Center, the Artisan Shoppe and the Gallipolis Railroad Freight Station Museum.
“There’s a lot of history there,” said Crouse. “Haskins Park, the pool, they all have needs. Some have more access to grants than others. (Ohio 160) is also a main entrance to town. That’s partly why we focused on it. I didn’t realize nearly 8,500 people come into or exit town that way on a daily basis. There’s not really a lot of signage there (announcing entrance to Gallipolis).”
“First of all, I commend the Gallia County Convention and Tourism Bureau for taking on this project,” said Gallipolis City Commission President Cody Caldwell of the video, also one of the area personalities interviewed in it. “The final product is wonderful. I truly appreciate the opportunity to represent our community and shed some light on the need for improvements to our largest recreation area. I wish the tourism bureau the best of luck with their submission. I’m sure whichever community wins the contest will be very deserving.”
“Downtown is beautiful and I’m not saying it’s ugly in-between,” said Crouse,” but the upper part of Second (Avenue), we don’t have there what we have downtown. Let’s carry it all the way through into town and downtown and bring it all together. That’s our goal on this project.”
Other individuals interviewed in the video included the Gallipolis Railroad Freight Station Museum Vice President Jerry Davis, Gallia Chamber of Commerce Volunteer Marianne Campbell, John Gee Black Historical Center Treasurer Bobette Braxton and The Artisan Shoppe’s Kelsey Kerr.
The video can be found at the Gallia County Convention and Tourism Bureau Facebook page.
Dean Wright is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing and can be reached at 740-446-2342.