Letter: Outer Banks weathered storm just fine

Published 12:21 pm Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Though the Outer Banks was spared much of Hurricane Florence’s physical impact, the Visitors Bureau has been hard at work to ensure that we also avoid the impact of misperceptions about our area.

The track of the storm kept the media’s attention mostly focused on areas other than the Outer Banks. Consequently, our office hasn’t had nearly the volume of media inquiries, or concerned visitor calls, as experienced with other hurricanes.

The outerbanks.org website and social media channels were updated before, during and after the storm to keep visitors safe and informed. Special thanks to Dare County Emergency Management for their excellent work in providing clear and timely bulletins.

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As part of the lead-up to Florence, we paused the fall advertising campaign that was scheduled to start over the last week and a half. Now we’re prepared to come back with the full weight of the campaign — one of our largest of the year, with television in Washington DC, Raleigh, Richmond and the Tidewater, print advertising, online media buys nationwide and even direct mail in several key markets.

The Visitors Bureau has also been working to secure regional and national media coverage of the re-opening of the Wright Brothers Visitors Center, scheduled for the end of this month. Other planned travel writer visits and social media influencer visits are being rescheduled as we speak.

Though the hurricane caused some short-term disruption to events here locally, the next few months are well stocked with great activities to keep visitors (and locals) busy on the Outer Banks.

In short, we’re in a good position coming out of the storm perception-wise and look forward to bringing visitors back to our area as we move in to fall. Please let me know if you have any questions or if there is anything we can do for you.

Lee Nettles, Outer Banks Visitor Center executive director