By MARK EVANS
STE. GENEVIEVE HERALD
Tanalyn Dollar has hit the ground running as Ste. Genevieve’s new tourism director.
A St. Charles native, who spent much of her career in Jefferson County, Dollar has found Ste. Genevieve welcoming.
“Everybody has made me feel very welcome,” she said. “They’re very helpful and have made themselves accommodating. I feel fortunate. Not every place you work in is friendly and helpful.
“So, I feel the Ste. Gen. warmth and charm. I hope to capitalize on that and also enhance it through all kinds of different means. From the time people enter into the town, to helping people find things, friendly people, when they leave the town, they think about how they need to come back.”
DIGITAL TOOLS ARE BIG KEYS
Dollar downplayed the frustration the past two tourism directors experienced in trying to get the various stakeholders to pull together, and in getting criticism and conflicting requests from so many different entities.
“The challenge in this position is not the relationships in the community,” she said. “The greatest challenge is implementing the technologies that are going to provide that platform to the audiences we serve.”
She is confident she can help all those with vested interests in Ste. Genevieve tourism to start making use of the latest technology to enhance visitors’ experiences.
“I’m all about using the website and the digital tools to meet the audience’s expectations,” she said. “My role is to build awareness of Ste. Gen. and its assets with people who otherwise wouldn’t consider coming here or choose Ste. Gen. over other places to go and spend their dollars.”
With inflation around 14%, people are gripping their money tighter these days.
“All the research already says that travelers are very careful about how they’re going to be spending their money,” Dollar said. “They’re still going to travel because we inherently want to travel and see new things and meet new people. That’s not going to go away.
“But, it’s a positive thing maybe for Ste. Gen. Instead of going to Cancun or California or Yellowstone, maybe because things are tighter, they’re looking to do a day trip or a two-day trip.”