Onward NRV hosted the Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) Business Investment team on a familiarization tour of Virginia’s New River Valley from March 21st – 23rd. During the tour, the visitors explored all five NRV communities and learned why the region is a great place to live, work, and do business. The goal of the tour was for the visiting Business Managers to get a better understanding of the region so they can promote the NRV to companies looking to locate in Virginia.
The tour began by exploring Giles County on Tuesday afternoon. The VEDP team explored Kairos Resort and took a driving tour of the county. This was followed by a networking hour and dinner at Mountain Lake Lodge with local economic developers from the entire region. The visitors ended the night by taking in the sunset on the top of Bald Knob, one of the most iconic views in the New River Valley.
Wednesday morning started with a breakfast and presentation from Brett Malone, President & CEO of the Virginia Tech Corporate Research Center. The group then headed to Floyd County where they explored the Floyd Innovation Center and the businesses that are thriving there. Following the stop at the Innovation Center, the group toured the facilities of two Floyd County manufacturers: Crenshaw Lighting and Hollingsworth & Vose. The final stop in Floyd was at the iconic Floyd Country Store for a tasty lunch.
The VEDP team spent Wednesday afternoon in Montgomery County, where they toured MELD Manufacturing and got to see a demonstration of Wing’s drone delivery service in Christiansburg. The next stop was Virginia Tech’s LINK+LICENSE+LAUNCH, where the group heard from Brandy Salmon, Associate Vice President for Innovation and Partnerships, and Carl Mitchell, Associate Director for Business Development. Then they cheered on the Hokies from English Field at Atlantic Union Bank Park where the VT Baseball team beat VMI 11-0. Finally, they enjoyed dinner and a night of trivia at Eastern Divide Brewing Company in Blacksburg.
Thursday morning started with breakfast in Pulaski County with community leaders and a tour of the Pulaski County Innovation Center. The breakfast was catered by the Pulaski County High School Culinary Arts program. The group from VEDP then got to explore Pulaski County’s new Experiential Center and tour the Pulaski County High School Career & Technical Education program. Last but not least the group was able to experience the City of Radford. They enjoyed lunch at Sal’s Italian Restaurant followed by a sneak peek tour of the new Highlander Hotel.
Onward NRV would like to thank the guests from VEDP Business Investment team for visiting the New River Valley as well as all the community and industry partners that made this regional familiarization tour a great success.
Virginia’s New River Valley: Virginia’s New River Valley is an eclectic mix of interconnected small towns that each offer their own unique vibe and appeal. The region provides an abundance of cultural and social offerings due to the presence of three world-class universities, while retaining the charm and benefits of small town living. The NRV is home to a diverse and innovative business community with companies that range from high-tech startups to foreign-based corporations to specialty agribusiness. These organizations benefit from the collaborative spirit of our region and a loyal, highly-skilled, and educated workforce. The scenic beauty of the region also fosters a deep connection to nature, which is deepened by access to outdoor recreation and the preservation of our natural environment. It’s clear why Virginia’s New River Valley is “A Natural Fit.”
Onward NRV: Onward NRV is a public/private, regional economic development organization whose mission is to attract and retain world class jobs, investment, and talent in Virginia’s New River Valley. It’s also a movement where leaders from business, government, and higher education work together to promote the economic vitality of the region.