PIKEVILLE, KY — A new video series will guide visitors to the treasure trove of tourism destinations across Appalachia Kentucky. The series is being produced through a partnership between SOAR and The Kentucky Wildlands.
“Car trips are popular right now, so it is the perfect time to showcase our region’s hidden gems for visitors who want to get away and do something different,” said Joshua Ball, Associate Executive Director of SOAR, which is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that is a champion for Appalachia Kentucky.
“The videos will show off the experiences that are possible when you make the short, scenic drive to this region,” he explained. “If you are a ‘foodie,’ music lover, history buff or outdoor enthusiast, you can find what you are looking for in Appalachia Kentucky. Here, you can escape into nature and heritage, whether you want peace and quiet or excitement and adventure.”
“The Kentucky Wildlands brand appears throughout the videos as a common thread weaving together the communities,” said Tammie Nazario, Director of the Kentucky Wildlands, which is a regional brand and tourism marketing campaign for 41 counties of southern and eastern Kentucky. The Kentucky Wildlands is designed to expand tourism development in the region — which is one of the most beautiful and adventurous parts of the country, but which also faces significant economic challenges.
“We are launching The Kentucky Wildlands campaign as we speak, and I believe this video series is the perfect kickoff,” she said. “These videos clearly show the power of partnerships among local tourism leaders and regional organizations, like SOAR, to extend our impact.”
“To join the excitement of The Kentucky Wildlands launch, please link to @ExploreKYWildlands on social media outlets and sign up for updates at our new website, www.ExploreKYWildlands.com,” she added. “The website is still under construction, but already it offers an inviting gateway to our region.”
Each video features a community in the region and highlights its local attractions, such as outdoor recreation, music venues and lodging. Stunning videography and friendly interviews give viewers a feel for what awaits them in that community. Pike TV will broadcast the videos, and they can be viewed online at YouTube.
Beattyville and Lee County, “the heart of the Kentucky River,” take center stage in the first video. It can be seen on Pike TV or online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UyO4hNeoTLE.
“We encourage families to travel 20 minutes south of the Red River Gorge and try the adventures and accommodations we have to offer in Beattyville and Lee County,” said Dedra Brandenburg, Director of Beattyville/Lee County Tourism. “With a wide variety of outdoor adventures, such as hunting, boating, kayaking, fishing, off-roading, horseback riding, hiking, mountain biking and rock climbing, you can’t just stay one weekend and experience them all.”
“Here, the North, Middle and South Fork Rivers merge to form the birthplace of the Kentucky River,” she said. “There is a deep history of barging coal and rafting logs on the river. Today, the main use is recreational. Not only are there excellent fishing spots, but also many paddle trails end in Beattyville, so you can leave your car in town and be shuttled upstream to start your river adventure. There are half-day and full-day trips to experience on the water. Beattyville is walking distance from the riverbank, so you can stroll up to Main Street to shop, eat or grab groceries before heading back to your cabin, campground or RV.”
The video provides beautiful footage of the area’s vast outdoor recreation opportunities. Local attractions include a golf course, ziplining, boat ramps, and outdoor and indoor rock climbing. Trails await motorized boats, mountain bikes and hiking. Lodging varieties include campgrounds, RV park, cabins of all sizes and amenities, a family-operated motel, interior rooms lodge, and an exquisite bed and breakfast.
For more information about visiting Beattyville and Lee County, contact Brandenburg at (606) 464-5038 or visit www.heartofthekentuckyriver.com.