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Commissioners talk tourism

by Larry Patrick

WALSENBURG-    The tourism board reported to the Huerfano County Commissioners that they have received $33,500 from the lodging tax through Feb. 6th. Being the first year that hotels in the county have collected the lodging tax, it is not known if they have all sent in their collections to the state to be returned to the county. That is being checked on. The commissioners were pleased with the first year results and everyone expects the lodging tax dollars to increase as more tourism comes to Huerfano County.

   Debra Malone, chairman of the tourism board reported that they have placed advertising in Denver and Colorado Springs newspapers and some area tourism guides to promote travelers coming to Huerfano County this summer. Malone believes that with the higher gasoline prices, that tourists will take shorter trips and that can benefit them coming here from bigger cities.

   The tourism board also will change the advertising billboard on both sides of Highway 12 to reflect new information about the train rides from LaVeta to Alamosa and also the other sights to see in the Cuchara Valley.

   Interesting information about Walsenburg and Huerfano County are included in a book by Scott Martelle, a Los Angeles Times reporter, dealing with the coal miner strike in 1914. The book is available at the mining museum. A dvd will also be available soon on the life of labor leader, Mother Jones, which includes several shots of Walsenburg during the mining strike. The mining museum will have it available soon.