Tidying up the town for the games

Published 8:00 am Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Tryon cleans, plans to hand out maps, gift bags to WEG spectators

TRYON — The town of Tryon is sprucing up downtown to prepare for visiting spectators to the upcoming World Equestrian Games.

Tryon Town Manager Zach Ollis said last week the town is doing a lot of work in preparation for the games, with the help of several people and businesses, including Down to Earth Garden Center and Thompson’s Landscaping. Flowers are being put up in planters around downtown, cleaning has been done and the North Carolina Department of Transportation is putting the finishing touches on repaving downtown, from the intersection of Highway 108 and U.S. 176 to the state line.

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“We’re going to have a brochure that has a map of downtown and also events that are going on in the month of September and also a few of the major events,” said Tryon Downtown Development Association Executive Director Jamie Carpenter. “We will also put that map on the ‘Explore Tryon’ website.”

The town is getting upcoming events signs to place at the entrances to town that will be made in the layout of WEG, so there is a little bit of the games’ branding connected to the town.

“We’re also working on some stickers that will be distributed,” Carpenter said. “That way, people can get to our Explore Tryon website for tourist information.”

Banners will also be placed across the street in Tryon for the games.

WEG will be from Sept. 11-23 at the Tryon International Equestrian Center, off Pea Ridge Road in Mill Spring. County officials are expecting 20,000 to 30,000 people to come to the event each day, which could mean more than 350,000 people attending over the two-week period.

Carpenter said the TDDA is working on updates to the town’s walking tour brochure that will make it easy to view on the town’s website, and is also working on gift bags that will be distributed to spectators who are staying locally. Carpenter said the gift bags will include coupons and discounts to Tryon businesses.

The town is also working to ensure the Tryon Historical Museum is open daily during the games. Carpenter said TDDA volunteers and others, including herself, have agreed to supplement the museum for it to be available to any visitors.

The Polk County Tourism Department will have a visitor’s center in the parking lot off Highway 9, where spectators will park for WEG. Carpenter said she has asked people to help with the county’s tourism center there to show visitors how to get to downtown Tryon.