With raised glasses and a champagne toast, local leaders, business owners and community members marked the Indiana County Tourist Bureau’s 50th anniversary Wednesday evening.
“This is to the founding fathers who recognized the need to promote Indiana County, to all the past and current board members, and to all the past and current directors who laid the foundation to maintain a relationship with all of its members and all the communities of Indiana County,” said Carl Kologie, a Gazette columnist and former board member who toasted the organization at its anniversary celebration at Rustic Lodge in White Township.
“So tonight we toast the Indiana County Tourist Bureau on its golden anniversary for 50 years of outstanding service in spreading the good words about Indiana County,” Kologie said.
There was recognition aplenty for current and former board members, for current and former staff members and for those who had served as Queen Evergreen, a program by which a local girl was selected annually to represent the county.
There also was a special recognition for the Indiana County Christmas Tree Growers Association, which was presented with the organization’s Tourism Ambassador Award.
The award is presented annually to an organization that has helped promote tourism in the county. Last year’s recipient was IUP’s Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex.
The association was one of five nominees for the award; the other four were Windgate Vineyards and Winery, Walnut Hill Winery, Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s Lively Arts program and Thunder Mountain Lenape Nation.
Also during the banquet, Penny Perman, the tourist bureau’s executive director, unveiled the bureau’s new logo. It reads “Visit Indiana County, Pennsylvania” and retains the familiar line scribble representing a Christmas tree.
“It’s bright, it’s colorful, and it’s modern,” Perman said.
Perman thanked all those who have supported the bureau over the years, those who continue to work to move it forward and those who had a hand in planning the dinner.
“My hope is that we’re continuing to build new steps that will carry on our Indiana County Tourist Bureau to the next 50 years and beyond,” Perman said.