By Pamela Brownstein
Only hours after NBC’s Today Show aired the results of Coastal Living Magazine’s “Happiest Seaside Town,” Beaufort Mayor Billy Keyserling and Robb Wells of the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce met at The Arsenal to discuss how to make the most of Beaufort’s national exposure.
“I am today the happiest mayor in the happiest city on the seaside,” declared Mayor Keyserling. He said the community should be proud of voting online to make Beaufort number one, but it’s the strong foundation and depth of history that make this area attractive and put Beaufort in the initial running among the other 10 seaside towns.
“This is all built on our 300-year history,” said Keyserling.
Robb Wells, tourism division executive for the Chamber of Commerce, added that Beaufort’s reputation as a healthy locale and a top retirement spot also helped the town gain recognition.
Wells said the goal of the chamber is to leverage this national attention to attract more visitors and to tie it in with upcoming National Tourism Week.
He plans to apply awards and recognitions to a comprehensive marketing strategy that can be measured to reveal the ways tourism positively impacts Beaufort.
The mayor said awards lay a good background for the cumulative effect of packaging Beaufort and to tie it in with economic development.
Beaufort will be featured in the June issue of Coastal Living Magazine. The article reads: “Lowcountry friendliness and urban refinement strike just the right balance in this beautiful South Carolina town known for its historic antebellum architecture, exquisite local cuisine, and rich African-American heritage.” The other towns include Harwich Port, Mass.; Kennebunkport, Maine; La Jolla, Calif.; Newport, RI; Paia Town, Maui, Hawaii; Pescadero, Calif.; Rowayton, Conn.; Sag Harbor, NY; and Sanibel Island, Fla. The magazine will be on the stands later this week.
On Thursday, May 9, the Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a celebratory party in the courtyard of The Arsenal, 713 Craven Street, from 3 to 5 p.m. The event will include food and drink for attendees, as well as giveaways, and is free and open to the public.