Guild’s decision a great one

Published 8:33 pm Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Although many people will miss Clyde Roberson’s “world-famous” clam chowder at this year’s East Carolina Wildlife Arts Festival and North Carolina Decoy Carving Championships, those people have an excellent option when it comes to eating during the festival — area restaurants.
After many years of providing food at the festival, Washington’s First Christian Church has “retired” from providing that food. Instead, festival-goers and festival exhibitors will be urged to take care of their dining needs at area restaurants, including the several new eateries in downtown Washington.
The decision by the East Carolina Wildfowl Guild to promote dining at area restaurants is an excellent one — one that deserves recognition. The first three months of any year are usually considered “slow” months by many retailers and restaurant owners. In the Washington area, business usually begins picking up in the warmer months when visitors are more plentiful.
“We’re going to work with the local restaurants and communicate with them and let them know we are going to try to get the people who are in town to spend more time going to the local restaurants to try to pick their business up a little bit,” Mike Hicks, festival show chairman, said earlier this month. “As an example, in the exhibitors’ packages, we are going to have information about all the new restaurants to try to get them to the restaurants.”
There’s no doubt the festival brings money into the city and Beaufort County — a study done several years ago proved that. Area hotels, motels and other lodging establishments see revenues increase during the festival, which adds sales-tax and occupancy-tax revenues to the city’s coffers.
So, even if there are some people who are disappointed they won’t be able to get some clam chowder at the festival, those people may find something just as tasty at an area restaurant. There’s no doubt those restaurants would appreciate their business.
Bon appetite!