The new Bolton town pier has been credited with boosting tourism in town, as well as offering a pleasant site for local residents for recreational use or for event receptions. Based on the pier's popularity, plans now call for rest rooms to be constructed nearby.
Tourism and commerce in general were robust this summer in Bolton, the town’s leader told Warren County leaders at a county Tourism Committee meeting held Monday Dec. 5.
Town of Bolton Supervisor Ron Conover said business locally had been quite favorable, despite the several-week drop-off in tourism experienced when Tropical Storm Irene roared through the area in late August.
“According to response I’ve gotten from the business community, revenue has been very good, and in some ways, better than ever,” he said.
Conover identified several factors contributing to the success of tourism and commerce: the new town pier and dock which has boosted travel on the tour boats, and promotion of one-way tour boat trips from Lake George Village that feature a return trip by trolley.
A new trolley schedule for 2011, featuring increased trips to Lake George — one every two hours this summer — doubled the trolley ridership to Bolton, Conover said.
The upgraded town pier with its pavilion is now a popular place for wedding receptions as well as various other events, he said. Conover added that the town is likely to accomplish more upgrades, including installing permanent rest rooms rather than having merely Porta-jons at the pier.
The new Bolton Farmers’ Market proved to be immensely well received, he said.
“The Farmers’ Market was a huge success,” he said. “It was the talk of the town, for both residents and visitors.”
The market, featuring a wide variety of produce and gourmet goods, was operated Friday mornings in the parking lot of Blessed Sacrament Church downtown.
Another element of success, Conover said, was moving the semi-annual town craft fair to Memorial Day Weekend.
For 2012, efforts to boost tourism include moving the Bolton Bike & Art Fest, held on Americade weekend, from Veterans Park to Rogers Park, closer to downtown.
The town is also sponsoring a French and Indian War Encampment event in June 2012, a month in which Americade and the Centurion bicycle race are also occurring.
“Our shoulder season for 2012 looks very good,” Conover said.
He added that part of the reason Bolton has experienced increased tourism and growth in business revenue is the recent investment in private property upgrades — both residential and commercial.
Conover pointed out to county leaders that by summer 2012, the Sagamore Resort is constructing a new enclosed activity space, as well as adding 16 new rooms to their hotel.
“We had a very good 2012, and we expect the trend to continue,” he said.