The state’s rich history, abundant natural resources, waterways, recreational activities and tourism all contribute to a robust Mississippi economy and a thriving National Heritage Area Program.
Federal and state investments help boost visibility and economic vitality of the six coastal counties that make up the Gulf Coast Heritage Area. These resources serve as a source of pride and offer visitors authentic experiences in our historic homes and museums, our bountiful waterways, scenic trails and our culture of festivals and traditional southern food. We are home to ship building, space travel and seafood industries. It is this that helps tell our story. Communities benefit from a National Heritage Area designation through a collaborative approach to conservation that doesn’t compromise tradition and local control over the use of the landscape.
A federal investment provides a bigger opportunity to leverage funds and create more partnerships. The NHAs maintain a successful partnership with the National Park Service, a trusted and publicly recognizable entity, which partners value when investing non-federal dollars in projects.
In June, I had the opportunity to visit with our Congressional Representatives, to communicate how important their support is to continue to fund the National Heritage Area Program. Federal appropriations are crucial to National Heritage Areas and are a valuable leveraging tool to help the Mississippi Gulf Coast National Heritage Area provide funding for quality projects that support environmental, historical, cultural traditions and lifestyles of residents along the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
- RHONDA PRICE, MGCNHA DIRECTOR