Hannibal businesses look to keep visitors coming - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Hannibal businesses look to keep visitors coming

Posted:
Shoppers walk down Hannibal's downtown district. Shoppers walk down Hannibal's downtown district.
Tourist walk in downtown Hannibal. Tourist walk in downtown Hannibal.
Hannibal History Museum co-founder Kenneth Marks talks to tourist. Hannibal History Museum co-founder Kenneth Marks talks to tourist.
Shoppers look at gifts during Hannibal's Steampunk Festival. Shoppers look at gifts during Hannibal's Steampunk Festival.
HANNIBAL, Mo. (WGEM) -

After a busy Labor Day weekend in America's Hometown, downtown Hannibal businesses are preparing for a slower fall/winter tourism season but, some are looking to keep visitors coming.

With the last summer festival wrapped up, Alferd Sellars says things will slow down for his trolley business.

"Kids are going back to school," Sellars said. "People are going home from traveling. It's natural."

Sellars has contracts that keep his business busy, but would like to see more visitors downtown.

"It can make or break you in the long run," Sellars explained.

For Hannibal History Museum Founder Kenneth Marks, it's an idea many businesses downtown want to see.

"To us, we wouldn't imagine this place becoming Branson, Missouri nor would anybody really want it to be," Marks said.

Marks says Hannibal is a niche tourist town with attractions for people to see, but the Historical Hannibal Marketing Council wants to extend the tourism season.

"The longer the season is the more freedom you have to change the way your business is, the more new things you can try," Marks explained. 

An idea Marks had when he and his wife founded the Big River Steampunk Festival. Sellars says it's been a boost to the business.

"We have a lot of people in anyway around Labor Day, but it was up," Sellars said.

Downtown businesses want to see the spikes become more of a baseline.

"The idea is if you get used to the spikes you're okay," Marks added. You don't need to change, but then sometimes you need to say is that really enough."

New ideas are on the horizon.

"Something new, something more," Marks added. "We're right on the cusp so I'm curious to see what direction we go with that."

The marketing council hopes to make a focus on Halloween this year and see what more can be done from there with some ideas also extending out to near Christmas.

Powered by Frankly