Tourist attraction brings life to Fargo - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Tourist attraction brings life to Fargo

June 15, 2004

Fargo - A new tourist attraction is putting Fargo, Georgia on the map. "It will draw attention to a little area and town that was dying," said Mayor Patricia Oettmeier.

A new two million dollar visitors center has been built right on the Suwannee River. Inside you'll find everything there is to know about the River and the Okefenokee Swamp. "We wanted to catch the tourists as they come by here on the river and draw attention to this area," said Oettmeier.

And just down the river, they're breaking ground on a new 12,000 square foot eco-lodge. "This will be used for groups to come in and have meetings, we'll have a catering facility, and it will have cabins for rental," said Oettmeier.

Each summer, the Suwannee River draws about 250,000 visitors to Fargo. City leaders hope the new center will boost that number even higher, pumping more money into this town's economy. "I had a vision to bring economic redevelopment to this area through an avenue that had never been tried before, and that was tourism," said Oettmeier.

Even Governor Sonny Perdue is making plans for his family to visit. "I have such fond memories of the Okeefenokee Swamp as a child and I haven't had the chance to bring my five-year-old granddaughters down yet so it's about time they learned about this great area," said Perdue.

The visitors center and eco-lodge will bring about 25 new jobs to the area, giving this little town the kick start it needs for a thriving economy.

posted at 3:40 P.M. by ashley.harper@walb.com