West Palm Beach opens waterfront visitor center [Sun Sentinel]
(South Florida Sun Sentinel (FL) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Oct. 05--A new visitor information center has opened in downtown West Palm Beach's waterfront park area, and city officials say it is worth the wait.
"It was the last element we needed to add to the Waterfront Park that opened in 2010," said Christine Thrower, director of the city's parks and recreation department. "It was much needed for West Palm Beach."
Since its grand opening last week, the center at 100 N. Clematis St. has welcomed more than 500 visitors, said Leigh Kendall, marketing manager for operator Visit Palm Beach, which also rents kayaks, water scooters and catamaran cruises from the same location.
"It certainly has been pretty nonstop," said Kendall of the flow of visitors.
The city pays Visit Palm Beach $10,000 a month for staffing, marketing and promotional services, according to Thrower.
The city spent $20,000 to get the building ready, outfitting it with counters, brochure racks, interactive kiosks and other amenities, Thrower said. Through early January, local merchants can promote their businesses for free with materials on the center's brochure racks, she added.
At least two Visit Palm Beach employees will staff the booth daily from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The center will open until 9 p.m. on Thursdays during the presentation of the city's free weekly concert series, "Clematis by Night."
Employees are receiving training from the Palm Beach County Convention & Visitors Bureau. The CVB also operates visitor information centers at its 1555 Palm Beach Lakes Blvd. headquarters, and at Palm Beach International Airport.
"Visitor information centers generate extended stays and significant economic benefits to the destinations that offer them, CVB president and chief executive Jorge Pesquera said.
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