DeWine said he’s excited for this summer as people are ready to get back to normal.
“Tourism is a big business. Tourism is essential to our state. And no where is it more important than our North Coast, where people come to fish, walk, hike, they come to sail. They come just to have fun. And this summer, I think, it’s going to be better summer we’ve ever seen. There is a pent up desire to go and enjoy yourself,” DeWine said.
He used the opportunity to tout the state’s rate of COVID-19 vaccination. Now, more than half of adults in Ohio are vaccinated. He called the shot, “Our ticket to freedom.”
David Gilbert, president and CEO of Destination Cleveland, acknowledged last year was difficult year for the tourism industry, which shifted to a mentality of saving businesses. He said statistics show people want to travel again and they have money to do it, so he remains confident there will be growth.
“We’re starting to see a lot of ‘Coming soon’ signs on restaurants that have closed and we are coming back, and believe that tourism can and will lead the way in the comeback of our economy post-COVID,” Gilbert said.
Prior to his stop in Cleveland, the governor visited Dietsch Brothers, a chocolate and ice cream shop in Findlay, and the National Museum of the Great Lakes in Toledo.