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CVB Launches Smartphone Tour

03/15/2012

The Milledgeville Convention & Visitor's Bureau has launched a new way to view historic sites around the Milledgeville area though the adoption of an interactive smartphone tour.

 The smartphone tour incorporates 12 different historical locations throughout Milledgeville and is QR code enabled.  Signage displaying the QR code tags will be placed in the featured locations around the city. The viewer simply scans the code with a downloaded free app and is then transported to another era.

 Heather Huff, project coordinator for the CVB, is hoping the launch of the tour will allow visitors to experience Milledgeville in a way no one has before.

 "This tour will allow the visitor to see Milledgeville as it was 200 years ago," Huff said. "We wanted them to be able to walk in Sherman's footsteps."

 The idea for a smartphone tour was created from the popular audio tour offered by the CVB in lieu of the historic trolley tour. Since the regular tour is only available once daily, the audio tour is a way to give visitors a similar experience without having to step aboard the trolley.  The CVB worked alongside the Georgia College Special Collections department in conducting research for this project.  Painstaking detail was taken to provide the most comprehensive, informative, and unique tour that Milledgeville has ever produced. 

"As the project progressed, the more we realized we wanted to incorporate historic imagery, documents, and information that the visitor could not see or hear anywhere else," Huff said. "Also, with technology expanding by leaps and bounds in every direction, we decided the audience would enjoy the convenience of a smartphone tour."

 Craig Amason, the executive director of the Flannery O'Connor Andalusia foundation, is hoping the launch of the codes will entice people to come and visit.

 "I hope the tour will whet people's appetite and make it worth a day trip from Atlanta to stop in Milledgeville," Amason said. "This is just one more level of exposure and gets the attractions in town in front of people."

 Each location has a separate tour and code but the visitor can also choose to view the tour in its entirety by simply clicking "Next" on their phones.  The tour also streams online so there is minimal wait time for download and the visitor does not have to sacrifice memory space on their phone.

 Amy Wright, the executive director of the Old Capital Museum, is very excited about the adoption of the QR code tags and is certain people will catch on quickly to the interactive tour.

 "This tour will give an overview of the venues and help visitors to realize the full extent of the offerings in Milledgeville," Wright said.

 The codes are currently available for viewing at each featured location with the "starting" point being at the Welcome Center.  Signage is placed within each location featuring the code for that particular tour. 

 "The purpose of the tour is to capture that tech-savvy individual who wants a little something extra they can't get anywhere else," Huff said. "We feel it will become as popular as the trolley tour."

 The 12 individual tours incorporate the following historic locations: Milledgeville Welcome Center, Penitentiary Square (GCSU front campus), Andalusia/Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Cemetery Square (Memory Hill Cemetery), Flagg Chapel Baptist Church/Sallie Ellis Davis House, Allied Arts, Lockerly Hall/Arboretum, Masonic Hall, Old Governor's Mansion, St. Stephens Episcopal Church, Statehouse Square (Old Capitol Building/GMC), and the Brown-Stetson-Sanford House. 

 For more information about the QR code tags and the interactive smartphone tour contact Heather Huff at heatherhuff@gmail.com.

Georgia's Offical Tourism Website