A new online survey is asking residents in unincorporated Chelan County how they feel about tourism. 

The survey from the group Visit Chelan County is part of an effort to maintain and develop responsible tourism in the county. 

Visit Chelan County Executive Director Jerri Barkley says the goal is to find out what county residents want to see with tourism. 

"In an unincorporated area like Plain, what does that look like," said Barkley. "What kind of growth would they like to see? Or do they want any? The same with Cashmere. The same with Entiat, and the same with Manson and any of the areas in between." 

The survey asks residents where they live and how they feel about tourism as well as how it impacts them personally and what changes or improvements they want to see and how they picture tourism in the area in the next five to 10 years. 

Barkley says it's important to grow tourism while protecting a high quality of life for residents. 

“How do we grow tourism in a sustainable manner,” Barkley said. “How do we protect what we have as our tourism assets, and make sure that our tourism efforts feed into the sustainability of inviting people here and maintaining what we have.” 

The online survey takes about 15 minutes to complete and is available through the first week in October. 

A second survey is being sent directly to a mix of tourism industry members as well as community and government leaders officials.  

Information gathered by both surveys will be shared with the Chelan County Lodging Tax Advisory Committee to use when considering local tourism investments in the near future and beyond. 

A 10-year roadmap for tourism is in the process of being developed to provide a framework for responsible tourism development and promotion in Chelan County. 

It’s an effort to enhance the quality of life for residents along with visitor experiences across the county. 

Barkley said Missoula, Montana and Bend, Oregon are two examples of communities doing a good job of defining who they are and what they want from their tourism efforts.

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