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Surging tourism threatens gateway towns

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Town Crier “Briefs from the Region” (1) – 7/28/20

Tourism towns across the country are experiencing an influx of visitors escaping pandemic news and opting for the quiet tranquility of mountains and meadows. One such town is Jackson, Wyoming, the gateway to both Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. Businesses in Jackson rely on tourism to survive, but are also facing animosity from visitors when they are asked to wear masks inside stores. “[It’s] almost as if they’re on vacation to find somewhere where they can go pick a fight,” Sean Love told National Geographic. Love owns Jackson Trading Company in Jackson Town Square. Tension has been so high that the Jackson Hole Chamber of Commerce hosted a webinar to offer businesses and employees guidance on how to defuse hostile encounters.

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