The Elkhart County Convention & Visitors Bureau says it will open a new Visitor Center this summer. Diana Lawson, chief executive officer of the bureau, says the center will be a tribute to the artisans, innovators and pioneers of Elkhart County. 

The new center comes following heightened tourism in the county.  A report from last year showed that visitors to Elkhart County contributed $550 million to the local economy in one year, including $374 million of direct visitor spending going to local businesses. Economic impact grew at an estimated 3 percent rate, adjusted for inflation.

“Tourism, hospitality and lodging are strong drivers of economic activity around Exit 92 and throughout Elkhart County,” Lawson said in a news release. “This area has grown and changed significantly in the 28 years that the Visitor Center has been located along Cassopolis Street. This move will make our services much more accessible and visible to visitors.”

The visitor center will offer personalized trip recommendations from the staff of destination concierges, and information about  attractions throughout the Elkhart County communities of Elkhart, Goshen, Bristol, Middlebury, Nappanee and Wakarusa, as well as Shipshewana in LaGrange County.