The marketing team of Pineywoods Economic Partnership (PEP) are pitching the plan across East Texas, the Pineywoods, Deep East Texas. Maybe you get the point. Marketers say this part of the state needs a brand, just like the 'Hill Country'. Marketing contractor Jane Ainsworth explained to the Nacogdoches County Commission that, "Automatically somebody knows where that is. It's not going to happen overnight. Once we come up with that it will take awhile to build an identity."
They want an identity that will appeal to 78 million baby boomers approaching retirement age. They already know they're attracted small rural areas. PEP board president David Alders said, "We don't have a major hub airport facility, but we do have great scenic assets." Forests, rivers and lakes and everything else nice about East Texas will be placed in a $100,000 marketing plan. Entities in each county will share with the cost.
Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Director Pam Fitch supports the joint economic effort. "We're all in this together here in East Texas and we need to work together and strengthen each of our community's image and then as a region as a whole."
Right now promoters are tightlipped about proposed brands or logos. Nacogdoches Economic Development Corporation vice president Donna Maisel said, "They are very interesting and there is one that is very promising and we're excited about that and look forward to what that might bring to our region."
Like more business for Diane Collingwood. Her RV park is home for contractors to snowbirds, but she sees nothing wrong with the pineywoods. Her park is named the Piney woods rv park. "Yes, I don't think you need to change a name that's been there for years and years and years. People know the name and the region and it shouldn't be changed," said Collingwood.