Gov. Shapiro Visits Foxburg to Promote PA tourism getaways

Foxburg, PA – Last week marked a significant milestone for the Clarion County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC) and for tourism across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, with the launch of the state’s new brand, “The Great American Getaway.” Governor Shapiro spearheaded the new brand launch in Scranton, PA among Tourism Bureau Directors from across the state. Following the launch, the Governor embarked upon an RV tour with his family, making fifty stops across fourteen counties to promote tourism throughout the state. Clarion County was honored to be one of the featured stops.

On May 24, 2024, CCEDC welcomed the Governor and his family in Foxburg. The first family enjoyed a tour of the historic Foxburg Country Club, played a round of golf with hickory clubs, and stopped at the Allegheny Grille before continuing their journey.

[from left] Jarred Heuer, State Representative Donna Oberlander, Hind Karns, and Eric Funk

Governor Shapiro emphasized the importance of small communities like Foxburg, expressing his enthusiasm on X (formerly Twitter): “My family and I had so much fun in Foxburg visiting small businesses and the American Golf Hall of Fame. If you haven’t been, you have to visit this awesome community.”
In Clarion County, tourism has become a focal point for economic development. The CCEDC will soon be launching its own county brand and marketing strategy and starting opportunities for county businesses to advertise and promote their products and services.

“The Governor’s tourism campaign comes at a pivotal time for Clarion County’s tourism promotion efforts and is boosting our marketing initiatives as we near the launch of the new website and brand campaign” said Hind Karns, Clarion County Tourism Director. “We plan to leverage local and state-level outreach to foster additional collaboration to attract tourism development opportunities to the county. Our focus is to highlight the abundant assets that Clarion County has to offer and support our local tourism stakeholders in promoting themselves effectively to attract visitors to our area.”
“It is no secret that tourism plays a major role in Clarion County’s local economy,” said Jarred Heuer, Executive Director. “It is our aim to strategically activate the combination of tourism, community development, and economic development. I am encouraged to know that Governor Shapiro understands how tourism impacts rural counties, and our team was thrilled to coordinate his time in Foxburg. We aim to capitalize on this opportunity so that business across all of Clarion County will benefit,” Heuer concluded.

Hind Karns in front of VisitPA RV

The tourism industry is a substantial economic engine for PA, which generates $76 billion across the Commonwealth, supports 486,000 jobs, and contributes $4.8 billion in state and local taxes each year. Despite those numbers, Governor Shapiro believes that PA’s potential as a top tourism destination has not yet been met. In 2024-2025, he aims to invest $18 million to bolster PA tourism economy.
In Clarion County, according to the Pennsylvania Office of Tourism’s 2022 Economic Impact Report, total visitor tourism spending within the county surpassed $134 million, with ample room for growth. Given the direct support tourism provides to Clarion County’s small businesses, it remains a central focus for the CCEDC. Since the CCEDC’s designation as the county’s destination marketing organization, it has continued to invest time and resources in the creation of the county’s tourism office. The launch of the CCEDC’s own tourism brand and website is expected in the coming weeks. The CCEDC will soon be onboarding a new Marketing Coordinator, adding to the organization’s staff capacity. As the operations of the county tourism office are established, the CCEDC expects to offer a full slate of advertising opportunities to local businesses and build upon the growth that the county has experienced.