Lynchburg venue receives first grant from new state tourism fund

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LYNCHBURG, Va. (WDBJ7) A new business in Lynchburg is getting off the ground with some help from taxpayers and our state government.

Locust Thicket is the first recipient of a grant from the new Virginia Tourism Growth Fund.

Rita McClenny, president and CEO of the Virginia Tourism Corporation, visited Lynchburg Friday to give Locust Thicket's owners a $72,000 check.

"People look for really unique and character driven places and Locust Thicket, with its history, is just the perfect location," McClenny told WDBJ7

The building that houses Locust Thicket dates back to 1790 and restaurants have operated at that location in the past.

City leaders hope the historic nature of the property will make it a popular stop for tourists.

State leaders said the grant money will be used to expand the catering aspect of the restaurant business, however the owner of Locust Thicket told WDBJ7 the money will be used to restore a historic cemetery on the property.