EDITORIAL: State sees foliage as way to boost economy

With autumn now arrived, it’s a good time to take a moment to recognize how special the season is in New England. The world around us is about to change in a dramatic way, and we can watch it all happen as we drive to work, or walk the dog or even just look out the window.

In a recent Record-Journal article, Meriden blogger Francesca Fontanez offered suggestions for those who might want to take a more deliberate approach to enjoying the fall foliage. Those destinations included the Quinnipiac River Gorge, the Saville Dam Tower in Barkhamsted and the Old Saybrook-Deep River area along the Connecticut River on Route 154.

“Each year, travelers come from far and wide to take in the incredible autumn foliage that we New Englanders often overlook,” wrote Fontanez. “When planning your day trips this fall, consider an eye-candy stay-cation right here in the Northeast!”

While New Englanders can consider themselves fortunate to live surrounded by the foliage glory, New England states also see it as an opportunity. As the Associated Press recently reported, Connecticut officials see a chance for boosting the tourism industry. Gov. Ned Lamont was on hand recently to announce a $1.4 million marketing campaign, called “Full Color Connecticut,” which is seen as a way to help the Nutmeg State rebound from the coronavirus pandemic.

“Connecticut’s tourism industry will play an important role in the rebuilding of our economy,” said Lamont, “which is why we’ve invested heavily in helping it recover from the pandemic.”

It’s certainly worth accentuating the positive. The budget for the campaign is almost three times more than what is typical. The AP also noted that the campaign is taking advantage of what at the moment is another Connecticut asset: high vaccination rates. The weather has also been cooperating. Rainy summers and low overnight temperatures in September add up to a winning foliage season.

Knowing that it’s helping the economy can’t hurt when it comes to enjoying the view.

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