"We believe it's vital for people to express their views on this idea," said Capt. Les Bolton, GHHSA's executive director. "As well as honoring our maritime culture, the heritage area is an exciting economic development opportunity, which could be especially helpful in smaller rural communities."
Designation of a National Heritage Area could advance the following goals:
. Increase heritage tourism for coastal and Puget Sound communities
. Provide new funding for community-based museums and heritage groups
. Support working waterfronts and our region's maritime industry
. Raise awareness of marine resources and the health of resource-based industries
The workshops are scheduled for these dates and times: May 27: 4:30 p.m., Bremerton, Gateway Community Center; May 28: 5:30 p.m., Bellingham, Whatcom Museum of History and Art; June 1, 4:30 p.m., Port Townsend, Pope Marine Park Building; June 2, 4:30 p.m., Aberdeen, Port of Grays Harbor Commission Chambers; June 2, 4:30 p.m., Anacortes, City of Anacortes Council Chambers; June 3, 4:30 p.m., Tacoma, Foss Waterway Seaport; June 4, 5 p.m., Seattle, Museum of History & Industry.
The workshops are organized by Parametrix, an Auburn-based consulting firm conducting a feasibility study on the proposal. The contact for Parametrix is Curt Warber, 425-458-6200, email@example.com. The study is funded by the Washington State Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation.
More details on the proposal are available at Maritime Heritage Network, http://www.maritimeheritage.net.