Roan Mountain makes cover of Tennessee Vacation Guide magazine

Published 9:34 am Thursday, January 9, 2020

The Roan Mountain community recently made the front cover of Tennessee’s own tourism guide for the new year, and county and state officials gathered at the Chamber of Commerce Wednesday afternoon to celebrate the occasion.

Dave Jones, East Tennessee Division Manager of the Department of Tourism Development, said they wanted to focus on outdoor locations for their covers this year.

“We also picked areas that were in rural areas,” Jones said. “Governor Bill Lee’s first executive order was to gather agencies together to look at these communities.”

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This year’s Tennessee Vacation Guide printed roughly 500,000 copies across the state, and it features four different covers, including Reelfoot Lake and Roan Mountain’s Jane Bald area.

“It is quite an honor,” County Mayor Rusty Barnett said. “That is what we capitalize on, all the beauty here.”

Barnett said the honor helps highlight not just to tourists, but also Carter County’s own residents, what their area has to offer.

“A lot of people do not even know what we have to offer,” he said. “Even I, I have been here all my life, I am still learning stuff.”

Jones said the photo itself came from a publishing company rather than a local resident, but he said they being featured like this is a big deal.

“Any magazine needs a good cover,” he said. “That photo was just amazing, stunningly beautiful.”

He said the distinction is a big honor.

“They should be proud,” Jones said. “This is where they call home.”

He said tourism hotspots are places where people genuinely want to live.

“They want to come and enjoy your experiences,” he said. “Where people like to live is also where they go on vacation.”

For Carter County especially, he said this can also serve to highlight the need to preserve the county’s natural resources.

“Tourism encourages people to preserve what they have,” Jones said. “More people will want to visit. […] More tourism means more opportunities for businesses to grow.”

The vacation guide is available for purchase or download at More information about the guide can be found by contacting TDTD at 615-741-2159 or by contacting the Chamber at 423-547-3850.