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New chamber name gets mixed reactions

SCHUYLER COUNTY—The Schuyler County Chamber of Commerce announced they were changing their name to the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce, last Wednesday, Feb. 18.
“At first I was very upset,” said Donna Kelley, mayor of Montour Falls, but added people know ‘Watkins Glen’ a lot better than they do ‘Schuyler County.’  She explained she has even heard people mispronounce the name of the county.  She likened it to another well known racing place; Daytona.
“Does anyone know what county Daytona is in?” she asked.  The answer is Volusia County.  Kelley said hopefully the name change will draw in more people and the rest of the area will benefit.
People knowing Watkins Glen more than Schuyler County was a reason the chamber of commerce gave for the change.  A press release from the chamber also said people have called them, mispronouncing “Schuyler.”  The chamber said that if their job is to promote and increase tourism for the area, then this is what they are doing.
Betsy Austin, mayor of Odessa, said she did not have an opinion about the change, but would wait and see if it will work.
This is not the first time the chamber of commerce has been named after Watkins Glen.  According to the chamber, in 1927 the former Business Men’s Association became known as the Watkins Glen Chamber of Commerce.  The chamber kept that name until 1980 when it was renamed the Schuyler County Chamber of Commerce.
The announcement came with the unveiling of the chamber’s new logo and slogan; “Something special at every turn.”  The logo was changed based on several art samples.  The slogan was changed because the chamber said people outside the area did not know what “World class with a twist” meant.
Over the upcoming months, the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce will be updating their Web site, advertising visuals and everything else to reflect the changes.  The chamber is also making plans for a new visitor’s center, as part of a 10 year plan.


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