The Fayetteville Area Convention & Visitors Bureau closed the third quarter of the 2015/2016 fiscal year with a tally of more than 65 future meetings, tournaments and group tours booked for Fayetteville and Cumberland County in the coming months. These events, which represent more than 26,000 room nights at local area hotels, impact Cumberland County’s economy at more than $5.8 million.
In addition to the booking achievements the FACVB:
• Redesigned the County’s Cultural Heritage Trails.
• Attended 17 trade shows and handled 12,100
inquiries at the three active Fayetteville visitor centers.
• Issued 17 press releases and secured 60 pieces of publicity in travel and local
• Facilitated four familiarization tours that brought attraction staff to visit hotels
and hotel staff to visit attractions to encourage cross-promotion.
“Everything begins with a visit,” says John Meroski, FACVB president and CEO. “Our organization works hard to increase the number of visitors, expenditures and, in turn, taxes collected.”
FTCC’s Bang for the Buck
Fayetteville Technical Community College is the third largest community college in North Carolina. It’s one of 58 institutions that comprise the North Carolina Community College System. Yet, it’s 32nd in local funding at $934 per full-time student, according to FTCC President Dr. Larry Keen. Counties share the cost of funding community colleges with the state. Community colleges in cities of comparable size receive much more local support. In Wilmington, County Commissioners contribute $1,212 per full-time student. In Asheville it’s $1,161. During his annual report to Cumberland County Commissioners, Keen downplayed that FTCC is the least funded of the state’s seven largest metropolitan community colleges. The ranking is deceptive, said County Commissioner Kenneth Edge. “A penny on our tax rate yields much less than other cities,” he added. Keen is seeking a 5.18 percent budget increase in the coming fiscal year, including a 3 percent raise with benefits for employees.
Serious House Fire
Fayetteville firefighters battled a house fire at 7311 Bertram Drive in Loch Lomond in which two occupants were injured, one of them seriously. Assistant Chief Kevin Morgan said the fire broke out in the middle of the night in the single-story house. The alarm was received by 911 dispatchers just after 3 a.m. Engine 8 was first on the scene and reported heavy fire and smoke. “Two people were inside the home at the time of the fire,” Morgan said. Both escaped the flames before firefighters arrived, but a family pet died in the fire. The fire department would not release names of the occupants, one of whom was hospitalized in critical condition at the Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill. An investigation as to how and why the fire started continues. The fire department did not say whether the home was equipped with smoke alarms. Officials estimated the loss at $76,000.
Youth Council Honored
The Fayetteville-Cumberland Youth Council received two awards this month at the North Carolina Youth Council Spring Conference. The conference was for state-chartered youth council, which compete for various awards for the work they have done all year. The Fayetteville-Cumberland Youth Council received the “Most Outstanding Project of the Year” award. The award was voted on by their peers following 10-mintue project presentations. The FCYC project was the Fayetteville-Cumberland Glow Fest: A Race for the Change. Information and photos about the event can be seen online at Fayettevilleglow.com. The Youth Council also received the highest honor of the conference: “2016 Most Outstanding Youth Council Award.”