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Could ‘hipsburbia’ trend save W.Va.’s small towns?

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(Lewisburg, W.Va.) WVVA - As Millennials and Gen Z age and have families they look for small towns outside of major urban areas.

Ralph Thompson, Executive Director of Destinations, Travel and Tourism at market researcher from Streetsense said, " The Gen Z and Millennials are going- as they age and have families- they’re looking for what we call “hipsburbia”. And their definition is small towns outside of major urban areas. So that’s the new suburban. But they’re wired and they’re authentic and they’re real and there’s not a lot of clutter."

Streetsense was hired by the Greenbrier Valley Tourism Alliance to conduct market research on Greenbrier County. Thompson said the 'hipsburbia' trend offers opportunities for towns like Lewisburg.

Executive Director of the Greenbrier County Convention and Visitors Bureau Kara Dense said the study by Streetsense provided information that will help Greenbrier County hone its tourism advertising dollars. Dense said the tourism industry in Greenbrier County currently pulls in about $237 million per year.

The Greenbrier Valley Tourism Alliance was formed in 2018. The alliance consists of the Greenbrier County Convention and Visitors Bureau, The Greenbrier, The State Fair of West Virginia and the Greenbrier County Airport.

Haley Brown

Multimedia Journalist

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