MULLENS, WV (WOAY) – Wyoming County has seen an increasing number of tourists in recent weeks.
The beginning of the summer has brought a boost to the economy of Mullens. As restrictions have lifted, there’s been increased exposure to tourists from other areas of the county. This influx has been positive for business throughout the town.
“Ever since Memorial Day Weekend we’ve seen an increase of the ATV travelers,” said Rebel Smokehouse Owner/Operator Jeff Meadows. “People have come in from all over the country. From Michigan, Minnesota, Alaska, North Carolina and Virginia. The come in to ride the trails.”
The slight boon has been good for Mullens, which has seen some tough luck in some of its key industries. Meadows believes that there is more potential than what might meet the eye.
“It’s a great opportunity,” Meadows said. “This town suffered a flood back in 2001, the leaving of coal and the way that the railroad is dependent on coal. The tourism has just brought an influx of economic growth for this area.”
Even with limits on capacity, Rebel Smokehouse has been slowly working back to a positive customer flow. The tourist traffic has brought a pre-COVID feel back to Mullens as summer progresses.
“It makes it almost feel like it’s normal,” Meadows said. “I know we’re at half capacity we can only do so many, but we’ve added additional picnic tables outside. It’s just something that’s made us change and keep our head on a swivel. We’re realizing what we have to do to stay in business.”
Meadows is optimistic that the rest of the summer will continue to be profitable for Mullens.