South Mountain Partnership Recognized with Partner for Impact Award

The Franklin County Visitors Bureau (FCVB) celebrated Benjamin Franklin, Franklin County‘s namesake, on the evening of his 317th birthday. The 11/30 Visitors Center transformed to the “Spirit of Independence Tavern on 11/30” to host more than 175 tourism partners and members of the Cumberland Valley Business Alliance at a Ben Franklin Day Mixer. Three centuries after his birth, Americans still know about Benjamin Franklin– his level-headed advice, his community-minded inventions, and his passion for independence.

Ben’s birthday was the perfect time for FCVB to celebrate community and recognize impactful partners. In 2018, when a 135-foot, high voltage power line project was proposed to cross nearly thirty miles of Franklin County, the county came together behind the use of county land and gave a collective voice to the county’s value. The project simply did not make sense as one to improve and deliver power. Ultimately, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission did not approve the project. Without partnership and love of community, Franklin County’s voice would not have been heard and the land of Franklin County respected. The FCVB Board of Directors knows the tourism assets of Franklin County depends on respecting and maintaining Franklin County’s natural, agricultural, and cultural resources because it is the reason Franklin County is a good place to live, work, play, and visit. Out of genuine appreciation and esteem came two special recognitions of the Franklin County Visitors Bureau—Partners for Impact Awards and Community Impact Award.

Benjamin Franklin would be among the biggest supporters of these awards, so it just made sense to celebrate Ben, the community of Franklin County, and say thank you with these two awards. The recipients of the Partners for Impact Award were the South Mountain Partnership, Lori and Allen Rice, Karri Benedict, Leah Nitterhouse, and the Franklin County Commissioners. All were recognized for their collective work to sustain the natural, agricultural, and cultural resources of Franklin County. Brad Warner of Patriot Federal Credit Union received the first Community Impact Award because of support in the powerline struggle and for generous and abiding contributions to make Franklin County a good place to live, work, play, and visit.

Cumberland Valley Breast Care Alliance (CVBCA) was on hand and received the proceeds of the 2022 Franklin County Festival of Trees. Samantha Logsdon, CVBCA, accepted a check for $7000, the money raised from voting and auctioning of 51 trees and 18 wreaths at the 4th annual event. Also presented at the Ben Franklin Day Mixer was the Franklin County Certified Tourism Ambassador (CTA) of the Year 2022 Award. Heather McEndree was chosen by her fellow CTAs. CTA is a national certification, which Franklin County PA initiated in 2017. The Franklin County CTA program strives to bring consistency, positivity, and pride to the people visitors meet.

When accepting the Community Impact Award, Brad Warner of Patriot Federal Credit Union said, “In more than 40 years of working in banking that he had not found a community like Franklin County.” People come together and make things happen. Franklin County Visitors Bureau is proud to represent Franklin County PA.