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ROOST releases resident survey results

Says most locals OK traveling within region, want tourist education

LAKE PLACID — On June 5, prior to advancing into Phase 3 of New York’s reopening, the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism sent out a Resident Sentiment Survey to help better gauge the sentiment of Adirondack residents with regard to their comfort level in reopening the economy and people moving around again.

This information was gathered to help ROOST’s business partners understand as they continue to develop and implement reopening plans; for community leaders to know as they set policy and prioritize projects; and to assist ROOST in better understanding the appropriate message to have in the marketplace.

The short survey asked questions about how safe people feel within their communities, visiting neighboring communities, and welcoming visitors back to the area. It also included open-ended questions looking for ideas and protocols that would help respondents increase their comfort level of activities including shopping, dining out, attending events and welcoming visitors.

After receiving more than 1,000 responses, ROOST found that residents want travelers to have reasonable expectations when they arrive, that most locals are comfortable traveling to neighboring communities, and that increased education and signage regarding social distancing and mask wearing was appreciated.

About two-thirds of respondents thought it was safe to move around their own and neighboring communities, and 45% said it was safe to welcome visitors back while 33% said it was not.

Of the respondents, 79% live full-time in the Adirondacks while 21% own second homes inside the Adirondack Park Blue Line.

There were 1,165 responses, representing 87 different postal codes in the region.

Within their own communities, a majority said they were comfortable dining at restaurants, shopping and going to attractions, but less than 50% said they were comfortable attending events.

“We were pleased to find that many residents are comfortable traveling to neighboring communities, which aligns with our Local Jumpstart campaign,” ROOST CEO Jim McKenna said. “It is also encouraging that our survey respondents said they will follow the leadership of local and state elected officials.”

“We recognized early on there needed to be a focus on the health and wellness of the community and to help the visitors understand the importance of following the guidelines set forth by the state. This has been reinforced by what has been found in the survey,” ROOST Chief of Staff Mary Jane Lawrence said. “We are excited that people have been very receptive to the ‘Politely Adirondack’ messaging regarding social distancing and mask wearing. They are helping our visitors know what to expect when they arrive, and residents and business owners appreciate the fact that tourists will be following the guidelines.”

ROOST has made numerous resources available to North Country businesses during the pandemic, including posters, yard signs, social media posts and photos, and business checklists. All of the materials are available for free at www.roostadk.com/toolkit.

For the full results of the survey, visit https://www.roostadk.com/updates.

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