Battle of Selma

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The Selma Times-Journal

Disappointed history enthusiasts are not the only ones who felt the loss when the annual Battle of Selma at Riverside Park was recently cancelled.

The event’s importance to the city is large considering the number of tourists it brings in each year, officials say.

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According to the executive director of the Dallas County Tourism and Convention Bureau, Lauri Cothran, the event’s impact is difficult to put into fiscal terms.

But it definitely makes a difference.

The tourists ate at local restaurants, bought gas and shopped downtown &045; things that would also be reflected in the revenue surrounding the event.

The cancellation of the battle came as a result in general decline in the numbers of war re-enactors nationwide. There is also an increasing cost in travel and gas expenses, organizers said.

But there is hope that the blow will not cause too much damage.

There are numerous and various events year-round that draw Selma residents and tourists.

Cothran has held her current position for 11 years, and in that time has been heavily involved with the Battle of Selma.

She said it is her hope the event’s absence this year will demonstrate its effect on the region.

And it wasn’t important for just the people who came to watch the battle.