Opinion

Bring on the visitors

You’ve got to hand it to Snoqualmie resident Sean Sundwall. While local cities are pushing to attract new visitors with branding campaigns, new signs and downtown redevelopment, Sundwall and his team of volunteer running enthusiasts are delivering them to the Valley.

Over the last three years, Run Snoqualmie founder Sundwall’s crew have created three fun runs in the Upper Valley, bringing hundreds of new faces to town.

Earlier this month, Sundwall and company’s efforts ensured that some 800 runners showed up to the first-ever Cinco de Mayo half-marathon and foot race. His annual Railroad Days Run is going strong, and he also created a Thanksgiving Turkey Trot that winds though the Snoqualmie Ridge.

In a sense, Sundwall is helping the economy of the Valley. A lot of these runners may not have stopped in the Valley before. Now, their boots are on the ground, experiencing the views and attractions, and perhaps bringing their family and friends back to visit.

For those folks who are visiting the Valley, or who will be welcoming guests this summer, be sure to check out the Spring/Summer Visitor’s Guide in this week’s newspaper.

Our annual guide is geared for the day tripper. In this incarnation, we were inspired by sister newspaper guides to focus on each local community, sharing a look at what you can do in a brief visit.

This construction-packed summer will pose challenges to the downtown businesses that thrive on tourism. The new guide is our effort to promote our community as a destination. Let’s all do our part to welcome visitors this year.

If you feel a business or destination was missed in the guide, share your thoughts with us. Remember, we’re planning a fall and winter visitor’s guide, too.

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