Governor Lamont kicks off summer tourism season

Welcome to Connecticut and get ready for summer!
Published: May. 26, 2023 at 4:42 PM EDT|Updated: May. 26, 2023 at 10:51 PM EDT
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MADISON, Conn. (WFSB) - Welcome to Connecticut and get ready for summer!

Governor Lamont is kicking off the tourism season with a big push to get more people to enjoy Connecticut, whether it’s at the beaches, the parks or the many museums.

“We have done the science center. We have done the Middletown Kids Museum,” said Lynn Newrath, Berlin.

“This is a great state, not a drive-through state. It’s a state where you want to stay and visit,” Lamont said.

Connecticut’s outdoor recreation is growing in popularity.

This started during the pandemic. Last year, there was a 23% increase in tourism that brought in 4 billion dollars.

“One thing I love about that is the fact a lot of people, over the last few years, we have doubled the number of visitors to our parks and beaches,” Lamont added.

For tourism spots like Hammonasset, there is a free transportation program called ParkConneCT.

This is a free shuttle service from bus and train stations to get to parks and beaches.

“What that means, when you come to a beautiful park like Hammonasset, which welcomes 3 million visitors a year, you can come down and enjoy the beach in the morning, and then pop out and go have lunch in Madison,” said Commissioner Katie Dykes, CT DEEP.

Connecticut has popular tourist destinations like Mystic Aquarium and Beardsley Zoo, but hundreds of other museums and theaters are looking to get funding for more visitors.

“I know how important it is to the governor to be supporting a broad community across the state, and we are hopeful to get some support to the cultural fund this year,” said Rep. John-Michael Parker, (D), Madison.

In addition to outdoor recreation, there is a free summer museum program.

Welcome to Connecticut and get ready for summer!