Greenbrier County sees secondary effects of GOP conference

Published: Jan. 31, 2018 at 7:15 PM EST
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“We’re just ready for that change,” Debbie Naeter says.

She's right outside the Greenbrier Valley Airport gates with protestors prepared to welcome Vice President Pence with their concerns.

“It’s health care, and fracking, and equality, and being nice again,” she says.

While down Route 219, there was a more positive message: a business sign welcoming Vice President Pence and President Trump.

“I just wanted to show them that, you know, we like ‘em, we love ‘em, and we’re glad they’re coming through,” says Crystal Blackburn of the Harvest Equipment Company.

Her welcome is no surprise.

“I’m a big Trump fan," she explains. "Huge. Huge.”

In downtown Lewisburg, further down 219, even though the motorcade will never get this far, they have seen the benefits of the conference.

“All of the hotels here in Lewisburg are full because with them comes security and those types of things," says Kara Dense, Executive Director of the Greenbrier County Convention and Visitors Bureau. "And so we’re hoping that those people can get out and about and into our downtowns of Lewisburg and White Sulphur and shop and eat and enjoy our area and just see how beautiful it is.”

And it’s not just officials.

According to Dense, “We’ve had calls here at the Visitors Center from national news organizations trying to find rooms for their folks to stay in as they cover the event.”

A bounty that Greenbrier County hopes sends a non-political message.

“It’s a great place to plan a getaway,” Dense says.