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New Visitors Center nearing completion in South Boston

Work on the county’s new Visitors Center is nearing completion with renovations expected to be wrapped up within the next two weeks, according to Halifax County Tourism Director Linda Shepperd.

Now when visitors travel Route 58, Highway 501 or Route 360 through Halifax County, a new Visitors Center touting new decorative black awnings and welcoming lighting will greet them at the intersection of Routes 58 and 360.

Located adjacent to Supply Line Discounts, the newly renovated building formerly housed Evergreen Equipment that operated as a retail business several years ago.

The move from the current tourism office at The Prizery to the new Visitors Center will mean the addition of three part-time positions, Shepperd said.

The tourism department currently has a staff of two, a full-time director and another part-time position.

It began work on transforming the 4,200 square foot building into a Visitors Center last fall after the Halifax County Industrial Development Authority and South Boston Industrial Development Authority jointly purchased the property.

At the time of the purchase, Shepperd pointed out the location of the Visitors Center is as significant as the facility itself with its high traffic count and accessibility.

“It’s all about location,” Shepperd said.

The tourism director is excited about moving into the building “hopefully Monday, Feb. 6,” with the Visitors Center expected to open to the public the following week on Monday, Feb. 13.

However, she said these dates could change depending on final building inspections.

Shepperd is looking forward to hosting a grand opening and ribbon cutting at the Visitors Center sometime in March after she and her staff have gotten settled into the new building.

“The Visitors Center offers an opportunity to influence where a visitor may stay, eat or shop. The goals of the department of tourism have always been to get more visitors to Halifax County, get them to stay longer and to spend more money. A Visitors Center will definitely influence the last two goals,” Shepperd said.

The center will draw attention to what the county has to offer.

“In addition to maps, brochures and knowledgeable staff, visitors will find exhibits of local interest and a gift shop. Business, racing, rivers and lakes, festivals, theatrical performances, wineries, museums, weddings and reunions, genealogical research, state parks, historical exhibits and sites all contribute to bring thousands of visitors to our community every year,” she added.

“Thousands more travel our highways headed to another destination, and the Visitors Center will give them a reason to stop. They’ll find everything they need, where to stay, where to eat, where to shop and where to purchase tickets for events and festivals,” she said.

“Regardless of what brings a visitor to our community, whether it’s leisure, business or visiting friends and family, the Visitors Center will serve as the front door to Halifax County. We’re going to invite people to be our guests. We’re going to encourage them to stay and to return again. We have a great story to share, and we will make those of us who call Halifax County home, proud,” Shepperd said.