Brimfield – Kent…A Secret Worth Sharing

Normally you want a secret kept, but not in the case of all that Central Portage County – namely Brimfield and Kent – has to offer not only to visitors, but those of us that call this area home, sweet home.

As the executive director of the Central Portage County Visitors & Convention Bureau (VCB is a lot easier to say, read and type), it is my job to help promote tourism and encourage visitors to explore Brimfield, Kent, and the Greater Portage County Region.

There has been a measurable increase in the level of interest in our area in just the last couple of years. The VCB publishes the area’s OFFICIAL visitor’s guide annually. Due to the number of phone calls and emails requesting information about the immediate area, we increased the number of Guides printed from 10,000 to 12,500. When the new Guides arrived in late June, we had less than 100 copies of the 2011 edition on hand. We receive hundreds of calls throughout the year from individuals and groups requesting information about the area preparing to visit. They want to know where to stay, where to eat, what to do while they’re here. Thanks to the vast tourism-related resources we have available, we put together visitors packets and mail them out on a pretty frequent basis, especially in mid-July, early-August when parents are planning to bring KSU students to campus.

In one afternoon recently, close to 400 copies of the Guide were distributed throughout downtown Kent to businesses wanting to have them on hand for their customers. Close to 1000 copies were delivered to hotels along the SR 43 corridor for managers who make sure each room has a copy so visitors to the area know where to eat, where to shop and where to go while they’re here. Between the Kent Heritage Festival and Discover Downtown events held in July and August, another 2,000 Guides were given away. By the end of summer, over 5,000 copies had been distributed locally, regionally AND nationally. That’s 5,000 copies of a publication featuring the Brimfield-Kent area and everything it has to offer, given away in three months. We may want to think about increasing the number we get printed next year. And businesses that didn’t take advantage of advertising in this year’s issue, might want to include it in next year’s budget.

So when people ask you what’s so special about our area or what there is to see and do, tell them…A LOT! Don’t forget to mention the development and revitalization of downtown Kent, the extensive park system including hike-and-bike trails, natural resources (including Mogadore Reservoir and the middle and upper sections of the Cuyahoga River), and great golf courses, as well as many festivals such as Brimfest and the Kent Heritage Festival, and events held throughout the year.

Stop by and pick up a free copy, and reacquaint yourself with all there is to see and do right here in our very own backyard. Don’t keep the Brimfield-Kent area a secret, help us spread the word!