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January 24, 2014

ROOST plans Olympic tie-ins

LAKE PLACID — This year’s Winter Olympic Games should help boost Lake Placid area tourism, says Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism President James McKenna.

McKenna recently told the Essex County Board of Supervisors that a 9-by-12-foot LED TV, often called a Jumbotron, will be placed in the park in downtown Lake Placid to show NBC’s Olympics coverage Feb. 6 to 23 from Sochi, Russia.

“Spectators can watch the competition in Sochi every day,” ROOST Communications Director Kimberly Rielly said in an interview. “The Olympic Flame Cauldron will be next to it and lit every day. It’s a neat place to be during the competition.”

Lake Placid was home to both the 1932 and 1980 Winter Olympics but so far hasn’t lured the games back for another run.

“We think all that continues to keep the connection with Essex County and the Olympic Games,” McKenna told supervisors.

HOPING FOR MORE SNOW

ROOST, a private, not-for-profit group formerly known as the Lake Placid-Essex County Visitors Bureau, has released its 2014 Essex County Strategic Sales and Marketing Plan, McKenna said.

The tourism agency gets more than $1 million annually from Essex County’s 3 percent lodging tax, to be used to advertise and promote the county to visitors.

McKenna said the ski season hasn’t cranked up to full speed yet around Lake Placid, but more snow would help.

“Looking at the winter season, we’re still waiting for the snow. It still is a little difficult. In metropolitan areas, where it’s wetter and warmer than here, people aren’t thinking winter sports.”

Once the Olympics begin, that may change, he said.

MARKETING GOALS

Most of the occupancy-tax money collected by Essex County is from Lake Placid, and most of it is spent to promote that area, something the market plan also reflects.

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