Dothan Tourism Continues to Rise

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In Houston County there is an increase in traffic and an increase in tourism and those tourists have more than $200 million dollars circulating in the area.

Location is a primary factory and tourism officials also say it doesn't hurt we've been tagged, 'The Amateur Sports Capital of Alabama'.

If they haven't been built, they're in the works. And if you build it they will come; at least that belief seems to work for the hotels across Houston County, which hosts tourists.

"Tourism is alive and well in Houston County." says Bob Hendrix, Executive Director of the Dothan Visitors and Conventions Bureau.

Hendrix says in 2006 the lively crowd of tourist spent $20.9 million dollars; $2.4 million in lodging tax and helped to employ more than 4000 people.

It also helps that Houston County lies en route to the beaches and Dothan holds sports tournaments every weekend.

Hendrix says, "Traditional family vacations have now changed and become what they call travel ball families. These type families are now travelling every weekend for some sort of sports event they are involved in."

So, with all the tourists coming to Dothan, could there be an even brighter future for Houston County?

City of Dothan Mayor Pat Thomas says, "In the next 10 years, the I-10 connector project starts that will help the city grow. Also, the Ross Clark Circle improvements, will play a major role especially when it's 5 to 6 years deep into being done. Those two things will ease along the trail.”

Now, folks say it’s a possibility we could eventually compete against larger cities like Montgomery.

We asked city leaders if it could be a reality. They say there's a problem.

Dothan doesn't have natural attractions like rivers and mountains. Therefore, the city's main selling point is its family atmosphere.
So, what does that mean ? Dothan leader's focus is on making Dothan better and not competing against other markets.

Meanwhile, Alabama welcomed 22.3 million visitors last year, which generated more than $8 billion dollars.