Some new tools are out, designed to augment interest in upstate New York's burgeoning heritage tourism industry.
For tourists, exploration of the Hudson River National Heritage area is easier than ever. The Hudson River Valley National Heritage has created a new website and released a new heritage site guidebook. The tools were officially unveiled Thursday in the rotunda at Albany City Hall.
Mark Castigtiglione is Acting Executive Director of the Hudson River Valley Greenway. "We're launching a completely revamped website, hudsonrivervalley.com, and a completely updated second edition of the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area Heritage Site Guidebook. The new hudsonrivervalley.com website is the most comprehensive website of Hudson River Valley cultural and historic attractions, featuring over 100 cultural and historic sites. The website now includes robust trip-planning tools that make it even easier for residents and tourists to explore the Hudson River Valley history. The mobile responsive design, geo-location and navigation tools will help people to easily find heritage sites, events and other points of interest on-the-go.”
The new second-edition Heritage Site Guidebook is a complement to the website, featuring an updated user-friendly design and vibrant photography. Each heritage site feature page includes a snapshot of the site's historic significance and relevant visitor information like site contacts, hours of operation, GPS directions and information about amenities available at the sites.
State Senator Neil Breslin said he was excited to receive his personal copy. "When I got this book and went through it, boy, it's quality, but the subject matter is spectacular. We live in the richest historical area in the United States, and the most beautiful."
Breslin was impressed by the guidebook’s features and design, including the spiral binding, which makes it easier for users to keep a page open and for note-taking along the way. The guidebook is rich in contact information and identifies sites that participate in the National Park Service Passport Stamp program and includes cancellation stamp collection pages.
Assemblywoman Pat Fahy noted "the more we learn from history, the more we also learn to respect it." T "And that is so critical, because the more we respect it, the more we will be good stewards of our environment, of our heritage, and the more we will invest in the future, and making sure that we remain good stewards."
In Congressman Paul Tonko's eyes, the book and website will share innovation to boost "heritage expression." "...because they're relying on traditional sources like guidebooks, a site guidebook that has been revamped and really is an attractive guidebook that really lures people to the Hudson River valley or reminds residents of the grand nature of our cultural and historic sites and our geography, per se. On the tech side, you know the hudsonrivervalley.com site, now made more user-friendly, utilizes the technology of today to again connect people to the heritage tourism of this region, which is a sound economic multiplier and a reminder that we're nurtured, defined, sustained by the sense of place, that is so powerful here in the Hudson River Valley."
The Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area program was established by Congress in 1996 and is partially funded through the National Park Service.