ROUSES POINT - The village of Rouses Point Web site has a new look and it's one village officials hope attracts more businesses and people to the community.
The newly-renovated www.rousespointny.com was officially launched during a special reception at Lakeside Coffee May 1, with community development director Melissa M. McManus giving the public an overview of the village's new on-line image.
Development of the new Web site took approximately eight months, said McManus, with AdWorkshop of Lake Placid performing the work. In order to mold the Web site into the best representation of the village, the firm solicited the input of an advisory committee consisting of local residents and businesspeople.
"We really felt most people really encounter us for the first time on the Internet, so we wanted to be sure when they saw Rouses Point on-line they got a good sense of what the village really is," said McManus.
When designing the site, the advisory committee also wanted to decide on a logo which best represented the village.
"The committee wanted mountains, they wanted lakes, but thought everybody has mountains and lakes," said McManus.
In the end, the logo contained an image of the new Montgomery Street gazebo and scenic pier, with the tagline "Charting a New Course," playing on both the village's waterfront access to Lake Champlain and economic revitalization efforts.
The overall description of the village was also summed up in three words by the minds at AdWorkshop, said McManus, calling the village "welcoming, awakening and fulfilling."
The Web site utilizes hundreds of photographs of the village to illustrate that point including images of downtown, the waterfront and various community activities. Several of the images found on the site are in a downloadable brochure, which encapsulates the site's information in an easy-to-read, printable format.
"We wanted a brochure that you could download from the Internet, because from what we understand, that's really the key," McManus explained. "Everyone is doing their travel plans, their searching on the Internet, so we wanted some sort of brochure that's a quick snapshot of Rouses Point."
Having the brochure already designed will make it easy to reproduce for placement in local businesses, welcome centers and chambers of commerce, McManus added.
The site also contains directions to the village and notes its close proximity to Plattsburgh International Airport and other amenities.
"We're trying to make it as easy as possible for people to find us," said McManus.
The village also aims to make it easy to find businesses in and around the village, offering a comprehensive directory which will benefit people visiting the area and those who already live in the community, said McManus.
"With our business directory, if anybody's looking for services, they can go to our site and find them," said McManus. "Right now, from gas stations to hair care, it's all there."
Links to other Web sites like the North Country Small Business Development Center, The Development Corporation, Empire State Development and the Plattsburgh-North Country Chamber of Commerce will also be beneficial to prospective businesses considering locating in the area, McManus said.
Even before they arrive, those visiting Rouses Point will be able to plan their trip with the site's revamped calendar of events section. There, visitors may find out more about events like the village's upcoming Fourth of July festivities and this year's celebration of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial. In addition, residents interested in village business such as public hearings and other special notices will be able to find that information listed on the site.
Village officials have the ability to maintain the Web site themselves, which will allow for the most current information possible, said McManus, including an up-to-date list of village contacts.
The Web site has been the effort of many people, said Mayor George A. Rivers, and one of which he is extremely proud.
"They've done a heck of a job putting it together. I'm very, very pleased," said Rivers.
When people are considering visiting Rouses Point or relocating to the area, a good on-line first impression is critical, said Rivers.
"We want to portray a good image of the village and I think it's very important to show people what we have here," said Rivers. "People aren't going to come if they don't know we're here. And, just about anything you want to know about Rouses Point, it's on [the Web site]."