BATTLE CREEK, MI   September 25, 2015— The Calhoun County Visitors Bureau (CCVB) will celebrate the Grand Opening of their new Battle Creek Welcome Center on October 1 at 34 W. Jackson Street in Battle Creek, Michigan.   There will be specials throughout the day with a reception and ribbon cutting from 4-6pm. The new welcome center space is located on the first floor of the Riverwalk Center and includes many features to welcome visitors to the community.  The welcome center staff greet visitors and are well trained to answer questions.  There are maps, brochures and a calendar of events available.  Visitors can get their picture taken in front of a “selfie” Battle Creek backdrop.  The space includes a public restroom, drinking fountain and water bottle filling station as well.

A variety of souvenirs and gifts are for sale including Battle Creek t-shirts, cutting boards, and other logo items.  Pure Michigan and Michigan Awesome items are also available.  The Welcome Center includes hand crafted items made in Battle Creek.  Ceramic mugs and bowls with the Battle Creek logo were made by a local artist.  Charitable Union has also provided a variety of hand crafted items including foot pillows, bowl cozies, and pot holders.  The CCVB is looking to expand the number of locally made items offered at the Welcome Center.    All items will be 20% off on October 1 for the Grand Opening.

The Battle Creek Welcome Center is located in downtown Battle Creek in the Riverwalk Center right across from Festival Market Square.  The space is owned by the Battle Creek Community Foundation and was occupied by the BCCF prior to their move to Michigan Ave.   “The location of the new Welcome Center is an example of collaborative planning and foresight, said Brenda Hunt, President and CEO, Battle Creek Community Foundation.   “It sets the stage for many additional opportunities that are really about how we treat and value our downtown visitors and guests. The Community Foundation is pleased to have been a partner in this collaboration.”

The new Welcome Center fulfills part of the strategic plan and five year vision of the CCVB to the enhance visitor experience in the community.  “Our organization saw the opportunity to enhance visits to the community by providing a unique visitor experience”, said Linda Freybler, CEO, Calhoun County Visitors Bureau.  “We want to share with our visitors and residents all the amazing things going on in our community and this center provides a much more visible and easy to find location to do this.”

The Welcome Center is open Monday through Friday from 9am to 6pm and Saturdays from 10am to 3pm.  Hours will be extended for downtown festivals and events.