This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
Community Profile: Roanoke/New River Valley Region


tents becoming a regular feature at the finish line of bicycle and foot races, to breweries using outdoor imagery as a focus in marketing, to the location of production facilities and pubs in communities pegged as “outdoor cities.” Roanoke’s success in attracting Deschutes and Ballast Point not only solidifies its growing national reputation as an outdoor town, but also reinforces the com- munity’s perception of itself as such. “The transformation of


messaging of this region, from an old railroad town to a livable outdoor-oriented community, has had an impact,” says Beth Doughty, executive director of the Roanoke Regional Partnership. “People feel more of a sense of pride and understanding of the community narrative. They’re ambassadors for the community narrative. Also, this outdoor narrative is being mon- etized by attracting businesses like [outfitter and gear consignment shop] Roanoke Mountain Adven- tures, and it’s attracting companies like Deschutes. If we hadn’t docu- mented this outdoor branding, we wouldn’t have been a good match for Deschutes.” In fact, finding the right


cultural fit was a top priority for Deschutes, says Michael LaLonde, the company’s president and COO. The brewery, which plans to build an $85 million facility and hire 108 workers, assigned a group of the co-owners — its employees share ownership in the company — to look at various East Coast cities. “We wanted them to think


about how to translate our culture to an East Coast facility,” LaLonde says. “We invited them out to take


Michael Galliher started a social media movement aimed at showing Deschutes Brewery the region’s best features.


a tour of each city and give us an opinion of where to locate.” During the multiyear process,


news leaked that Roanoke had made Deschutes’ short list, along with Charlottesville and Asheville, N.C. That led Michael Galliher, a local government employee and beer enthusiast, to start a social media movement. Residents and companies around the region filled social media with positive images of Roanoke, branded with Galliher’s hashtag, #Deschutes2Rke. Two months later, Ballast


Region at a glance


Population (2015 est.)


Roanoke area New River Valley Change since 2010


314,600 1.90% 181 ,700 1.90


34 AUGUST 2016


Unemployment rate (May)


Average weekly wage


Adults (25+)


with bachelor’s degrees


3.50% $868 26.80% 4.10 795 31.10


Point announced it would invest $47.8 million and create 178 jobs in Botetourt County. “We didn’t target Virginia


specifically in the beginning,” says Hilary Cocalis, Ballast Point’s vice president of marketing. “Really the reason we picked the location that we did came down to a number of factors. The folks in Virginia at the state and county levels were great to work with. The site itself checked all the boxes we were looking for in terms of infrastructure. We checked off other items on our list: quality of life, quality of water, things with the actual site and building, freight location, all of that. It was a perfect storm.” Part of the region’s success in


winning Deschutes and Ballast Point stems from its close call with Sierra Nevada four years ago. After that, the Roanoke Regional Part- nership began targeting breweries


Photo by Matt Ross


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84  |  Page 85  |  Page 86  |  Page 87  |  Page 88  |  Page 89  |  Page 90  |  Page 91  |  Page 92  |  Page 93  |  Page 94  |  Page 95  |  Page 96  |  Page 97  |  Page 98  |  Page 99  |  Page 100  |  Page 101  |  Page 102  |  Page 103  |  Page 104