BRYSON CITY, N.C. (WJHL) – Elizabethton city leaders are determined to bring the ultimate rafting, kayaking, and fishing destination to our region. They call it ‘Surf Betsy.’ It would be the first official whitewater park in Tennessee.
Elizabethton City Council members unanimously approved the creation of a ‘Surf Betsy task force.’ The group recently traveled to the Nantahala Outdoor Center in Bryson City, North Carolina to research the kind of whitewater park they hope to create on the Watauga River.
Elizabethton leaders believe investing in a whitewater park could bring millions of dollars annually to the local economy.
“Everywhere we’ve looked and done the research on this, it’s bringing in jobs, it’s bringing in millions of dollars, and that’s what it’s all about,” said Elizabethton city councilman Wes Frazier. “We have to go outside of that box and bring things in to Elizabethton.”
So how long would it take to make Surf Betsy a reality, how much will it cost, and how would Elizabethton be transformed?
In this WJHL web exclusive, News Channel 11’s Kaylyn Kluck hopped on a raft with the Surf Betsy team for an inside look at how whitewater can be big business for a small city.
You can watch the full story in the video above.