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Could Luverne be a travel destination?

Are you read to make that happen?

Seven years ago, the Luverne community came together as individuals, businesses and government to brainstorm on ways to improve this community.
The downtown retail corridor was suffering, the community was lacking things to do, places to eat, venues to shop and daily activities. People and businesses were moving out of town.
Some of this was real, some was perception, but everyone agreed we needed direction.
At a 2010 meeting of motivated individuals — now known as Luverne Initiatives For Tomorrow — the decision was made to identify what needed doing and how to get it done.
Monday night’s annual social of the Chamber, LIFT and CVB (Convention and Visitors Bureau), was the chance to take stock of what’s been accomplished and what still needs doing. (See the accompanying story)
In short, Luverne’s come a long way in a short time, but we’re at a point in the journey where we can rest on our laurels — or push forward.
By pushing forward, we would take the next step in the development of our community as a tourism destination.
In the words of Chamber Director Jane Wildung Lanphere, “If we want to move forward, the work that will be required may be as hard as what we have done during the past seven years. The involvement of citizens, businesses and government working cooperatively will be key to any progress.”
Monday’s winter weather was questionable and many people who intended to be there weren’t. But the meeting isn’t what’s important. The important question is, “Do we want to take the next step?” And, if so, “What direction do we take?”
Will Luverne be known as a farming destination? A prairie town? A town made famous by “The War” documentary?
Who are we?
We need to hear everyone’s voices in this process of branding our community.
Should we hire an expert in tourism destination branding to help us develop the plan to take the next step? Is it time for Luverne to develop its own “brand” to draw tourism traffic? If the answer is yes, then we need to find the financial resources to move forward in this process. If the answer is no, then we can rest on what we have done and see where it takes us.
We think yes is the answer, and we think now is the time.
As Jane said, “Let’s work together over the next decade to make Luverne the envy of the Midwest ... the place where people want to live and visit.”
 Call the Chamber at 283-4061 with your ideas, or email

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