Most small towns have their quirks, but PR man Neil Mortine wants
to turn his into a major tourist draw.
Mortine, president and COO of Lord, Sullivan & Yoder Public Relations in
Columbus, OH, grew up in idyllic Newcomerstown, OH, population about
4,000. It's an average middle American town, except for one thing,
Mortine says: "It has become an epicenter for Eastern US Bigfoot
sightings." Over the past 25 years, the town has even cultivated its own
Bigfoot expert who's more than willing to discuss the hairy beast with
Mortine sees it as an opportunity. "Festivals in Ohio are so big, I want
to have a Bigfoot Festival here." An annual event could draw thousands
to Newcomerstown and give a nice boost to the local economy.
Mortine hasn't gone much beyond the blue-sky phase of his plan, so
locals aren't reacting just yet. All that is except for his father. "My
dad says 'don't do that to our little town,'" Mortine recounts. Hmmm.
Maybe this is one time when father knows best.