Submitted by Beth Shumate, MCVB
The McKinney Convention & Visitors Bureau started the year off with a change of scenery, thanks to a move to new offices in the heart of McKinney’s historic district.
“The McKinney community has so much to offer visitors and residents throughout the city, and we could feasibly be located anywhere, but the historic downtown square is where McKinney’s strong sense of community began and where it still exists strongly today. Downtown is truly McKinney’s gem, so it is the right place for us to be,” said Dee-dee Guerra, MCVB Interim Executive Director and Tourism Sales Manager.
The new offices are located at 200 W. Virginia, on the northwest corner of Virginia and Wood. A sign now hangs from the awning out front and a newly-built ramp provides easy access to the front porch. The center is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and will be open some weekend hours during peak tourist seasons and during downtown events.
“We’re situated in the perfect place to accommodate those who come to downtown,” Guerra said. “Parking is plentiful and Mitchell Park, the starting point of so many great city events, is a stone’s throw from our front door. Being just off the square makes us so much more accessible for walk-ins, too, which is quite different from where we used to be located.”
The MCVB moved from its previous location – a multi-tenant office building at Heritage Drive and Pearson near U.S. Highways 380 and 75 – the week of Christmas and staff members already feel very at home and settled in.
“There are a few touches we still want to add, and new visitor literature is arriving almost daily from around the state to fill the shelves in our Visitor Center. Our McKinney brochures and maps are plentiful so we encourage people to stop by and see us,” said Vanesa Baggett, Tourism Services Representative.
Having an actual Visitor Center that can be open weekends as needed is new to the MCVB, as their two previous locations were not conducive to such a schedule. And the foot traffic has increased quite a bit since the move.
“We have had more visitors in one week here than we’d have in a month or more at our previous location. We’re loving the increased exposure and the ability to help more people learn about McKinney and to more easily accommodate groups visiting our community,” Baggett said.
The MCVB will celebrate its move with a ribbon cutting by the Chamber of Commerce and an open house on Feb. 20 from 4 to 6 p.m.