The biggest visible change you’ll see at Mammoth’s California Welcome Center is the signage on the brochure display racks, shown here. (Photo: Kirkner)
After approximately 13 years in the making, Mammoth Lakes has received the designation of a California Welcome Center, which means the marketing horsepower in the Eastern Sierra has just been turned up a notch.
There are 17 California Welcome Centers in the state, including Mammoth. The status allows the centers to network with one another and will interweave Mammoth more tightly and visibly into the California Travel and Tourism Committee’s (CTTC) marketing campaign that has a budget of $50 million and reaches both national and international markets.
An official designation ceremony was held on April 22 at what has been known until now as simply the Welcome Center. Tourism and Recreation Director Danna Stroud, Mayor Neil McCarroll, Acting District Ranger for the Mammoth/Mono Basin District in the Inyo National Forest Mike Schlafmann, and Gregory were all in attendance as well as approximately 40 members of the public.
“Mammoth will literally be on the map,” explained Mammoth Mountain Ski Area’s CEO Rusty Gregory Thursday. Gregory is also the Vice Chair of the CTTC, referring to the maps in the CTTC’s marketing campaign that show the specific sites of all CA Welcome Centers.
On top of that, Caltrans will install signs along US 395 letting travelers know that there is a California Welcome Center in Mammoth.
“Once the Caltrans signs are put up, we’ve often seen visitor numbers double in a matter of days,” explained Caroline Beteta, President and CEO of the CTTC. She also claimed that visitors to California Welcome Center locales more often than not extend their stay by three days.
Beteta also attended the ceremony, which according to Stroud was a first among ceremonies such as these.
The only visible changes you will see at the actual facility are new brochure ranks with added information.