Updated: Apr 14, 2021
This is our first time making a Quarterly Report. Even though ASTC is an LLC, we are not in competition with others. Our legal structure does not require us to be transparent with stakeholders, but our value innovation prevents us from hiding information from others. ASTC becomes stronger when stakeholders better understand the atmospherics and economic development potential of tourism, particularly nature based tourism in our 5 state service area.
Our primary objective for 2021 is to network and develop our brand while making our 3 websites more robust,
ASTC Home. Appalachiastc.com
Touring Events & Activities. astctour.com
On Feb 15th, ASTC went public and sent out emails of our press release. We also started a Twitter campaign with about 5 tweets per day.
In short, ASTC is satisfied with how the first quarter went.
The big surprise was how much time and effort went into Twitter. It was easily half the week’s work. For zero down you can network and advertise with thousands of people from around the world.
It was disappointing to discover how hard it is to find tourism activities over the internet.
Big Stone Gap, VA had a ½ marathon in late March and we never knew it.
We see potential in becoming the one stop shop for the information to help tourists make more informed decisions. However, it may take a couple of years.
We’ve emailed, Zoomed, and chatted with several stakeholders. They have all helped us with our 2021 Goals. More detail will be provided as the year progresses, because our Hall of Fame runs from Jan-December.
Thanks to twitter, we started to look into travel agents in our Coal Country regions (KY, VA, Southwestern WV). We found that most travel agents focus on cruise ships and Disney trips. We may have a huge market failure with no global or even continental travel agencies sending tourists to Coal Country. And worst yet, there may not be any local Travel Agencies working from within our region to help tourists bring down barriers to planning their trip. ASTC wrote two Entrepreneur Incubator blogs that help fill this market failure. More below in our blogs.
We will continue to push the agenda that we are on the verge of a huge change in our Coal Country services area. Smith sees West Virginia 'on the cusp of greatness' with entrepreneurship.
“I’m not sure there will be a lot of change. There will be some where we’ve reduced hunting in the Gorge, but I think what the Park and Preserve does is really highlight the four most spectacular parts of the park,” Watts said.
Things are picking up steam with passenger rail to the NRV.
We have it listed on our Policy Issues page.
Recently REI began to only provide trip packages to the USA. They would like to create 12 more Adventure Centers. They already offer packages to the Smoky Mountains, but we would like to see more in the Coal Country areas of KY, VA, and WV.
We sent them an email on March 25th to gauge their interest, and never got a reply.
We were able to complete the ARC Envision Appalachia Strategic Planning Survey
Thanks to Twitter, ASTC has found many many stakeholders. We tried to get the most from twitter by creating lists and using them to help others make more informed decisions. Everyday we found a new organization to connect with, and every week we found a huge nugget to add to multiple topics on our stakeholder site. Almost weekly we created a new list.
The first zoom meeting was on March the 9th. No one was present.
The next Zoom meeting will be April 13th. We will discuss opportunities for the Outdoor Club at Virginia Tech and their academic programs that complement our mission and vision.
ASTC Community Service
No community projects performed. We were never asked to help out.
No Sponsors were created. No interest was shown.
ASTC Hall of Fame
There were a few stakeholders who reached out to ASTC! We have some good leads for the 2020 Hall of Fame!
No financial support was given.
New ASTC Contributors
New ASTC Interns
In late Feb ASTC created our Internship Program. No Interns.
New ASTC Volunteers
In mid March ASTC created our Volunteer Program. No Volunteers