Natchitoches Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Arlene Gould and Groups & Tourism Sales Manager Leanna Coy recently attended the Jefferson Highway Association Conference in Pittsburg, Kansas.
The Jefferson Highway, originally created in 1915, traverses 17 parishes in Louisiana on its route from Winnipeg, Canada to New Orleans and was the country’s first intercontinental highway. The Highway passes through Natchitoches via Hwy. 71 to Hwy. 6/University Parkway, turns onto Jefferson Street, continues along Front Street to Washington Street, and then down Hwy. 6 East toward Montgomery.
The highway is still being celebrated by the Jefferson Highway Association, a group working to identify, preserve, interpret, and improve access to the Jefferson Highway and its associated sites. The Association held their annual conference in Pittsburg, Kansas on June 1-4. Natchitoches was host to the annual conference in 2019.
Gould and Coy participated in the conference sessions, a bus tour along the Jefferson Highway, and an awards banquet where the Natchitoches CVB received recognition for creating a Jefferson Highway promotional brochure highlighting sites, events and historic hotels along the Highway throughout the state of Louisiana. The brochures are available in the Natchitoches Visitor Center on Front Street.
Gould was re-elected to the JHA Board of Directors for a second term. She is currently assisting with two projects including identifying historic lodging along the Highway and state associations within the JHA.
“It is a great honor and pleasure to serve as a board member for the JHA,” said Gould, “and to be recognized for the brochure showcasing the historic highway route, not just in Natchitoches, but for all of Louisiana. Special credit goes to the Natchitoches CVB staff who embraced the Jefferson Highway as another tourism product our city and state has to offer our locals and visitors.”
To learn more about the Jefferson Highway Association and Natchitoches’ history on the Highway, visit https://www.natchitoches.com/jefferson-highway.
Photo: Arlene Gould & Leanna Coy
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