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Dawsonville on international display with VIP tour
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Dawsonville is among several destinations a group of international dignitaries will be touring across northeast Georgia this week.

"The international diversity found in Georgia elevates the state as an ideal place to live and work," said Georgia Department of Economic Development Commissioner Chris Carr.

An annual event made possible by the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the 2015 International VIP Tour in Dawsonville will include the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame, Dawsonville Moonshine Distillery and Atlanta Motorsports Park.

"The ability to showcase Georgia's multi-faceted economy to influential leaders from 28 countries keeps Georgia's tourism opportunities and overall quality of life on the radar of the international business community," Carr said.

The local tour will kick off at 8 a.m. Wednesday at the Dawsonville Municipal Complex.

"We are honored to welcome the International VIP Tour to our community," said Christie Haynes, president of the Dawson County Chamber of Commerce and Office of Tourism Development. "Our focus during their visit is to highlight the current success of international investment in Dawson County and showcase the quality of life that our area offers."

Now in its 30th year, the VIP Tour gives Georgia a unique opportunity to highlight business, cultural, tourism and educational assets of different regions of the state by combining travel destinations with significant economic development projects.

"In addition to the opportunity to showcase the business climate and quality of life that Dawson County offers, tours such as the International VIP tour allow our community to further promote our area as a top tourism destination," Haynes said. "The North Georgia Premium Outlets, Amicalola Falls and our many tourism entities offer international visitors unique experiences.

"These tours help our community continue to develop relationships with international groups which in turn increases the amount of tourism expenditures in our local economy."

This year's tour, which is April 15 -17, will showcase destinations in Dawsonville, Dahlonega, Young Harris, Sautee Nacoochee, Cornelia, Gainesville and Braselton to the Consular Corps.

The tour is the only event that brings the bulk of Atlanta's diplomatic community together with Georgians in these communities.

"Every year the International VIP Tour shows off a ‘slice' of Georgia to our Consular Corps," said Ember Bishop, the state's deputy commissioner, international relations. "The tour creates an opportunity to familiarize our VIP Tour guests with destinations they might not have otherwise seen, as well as create long-lasting friendships and business connections within these thriving communities."