Thursday, August 21, 2014

Help Support Heritage Tourism in New Jersey!

Help Support Heritage Tourism in New Jersey!

Whether it’s Washington Crossing State Park where General George Washington and his troops crossed an icy Delaware River to attack Hessian soldiers resting in Trenton, or Ellis Island where millions of immigrants first entered America, or Menlo Park where Thomas Edison’s research laboratories churned out world-changing inventions, or Whitesbog Farm where blueberries were first cultivated for consumption by people around the world, or the Cape May Lighthouse, which at 150 years of age is one of the nation’s oldest lighthouses in continuous operation, or, well, you get the point - New Jersey has always been a place where history is made!

However, not everyone is savvy to the rich history New Jersey has to offer. In fact, the NJ Heritage Tourism Master Plan states that "the development of heritage tourism by linking sites and educating historic site stewards about the heritage tourism industry" is a key need within the state.  

So, what is an avid history supporter to do? One really easy and fun way you can help promote heritage tourism in New Jersey every day is by purchasing a “Discover NJ History” license plate. Proceeds from the sale of these plates provide small grants to develop and promote visitor ready sites as heritage tourism destinations. Launched in 2012, a sample of projects completed so far include: a wayfinding program for historic sites in Morris County, architectural tours in Essex County, and a smartphone app for a historic burial ground in Elizabeth. 

Adapted from a painting of a house in Lambertville by renowned New Jersey artist Harry Devlin, these beautifully designed plates are a great reminder that history is never far away in the Garden State.  

If you are buying a car from a dealership, ask if they can order the plates for you under the “dedicated plates” category. Otherwise, click here to purchase your “Discover NJ History” license plates directly from the DMV website. Plates cost an initial $50 and $10 to renew annually.

Interested in applying for a “Discover NJ History” grant? Click here to learn more about the program.

The “Discover NJ History” License Plate Fund grant program is administered by the NJ Historic Trust, which was created by law in 1967 to preserve New Jersey’s historic resources throughout the state.

Do you enjoy the articles and features that The History Girl produces each week? 
If so, consider a donation to keep the movement going!


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