New signs: Welcome to Delaware, home of ‘endless discoveries’

One of the Delaware Office of Tourism’s welcome signs is on Del. 8, as eastbound travelers leave Marydel. (Delaware State News/K.I. White)

One of the Delaware Office of Tourism’s welcome signs is on Del. 8, as eastbound travelers leave Marydel. (Delaware State News/K.I. White)

DOVER ­— Frequent visitors or residents returning from out of state recently may have noticed a small difference when they crossed over into Delaware: Road signs that once welcomed visitors to the home of tax-free shopping or told of the state’s status as the first to ratify the Constitution now boast proudly of “endless discoveries.”

Delaware Tourism adopted the new slogan in January, choosing a branding campaign to go with it. “Endless discoveries” replaced “it’s good being first,” which had been in use for the past 15 years or so, according to Linda Parkowski, head of Delaware’s tourism bureau.

With the new slogan, officials are hoping to convey some of the many natural and man-made attractions the state offers — attractions which may come as a surprise to a large number of people.

“The goal is to entice visitors to travel to Delaware and to discover things that they never knew about,” Ms. Parkowski said.

Over the past month, the Department of Transportation has been replacing the road signs in 28 locations, ranging from roadways near Centreville to Delmar.

So far, the branding campaign has been met with a positive response, Ms. Parkowski said.

During development, people were surprised to learn about sites like Trap Pond in Laurel and the Nemours Mansion in Wilmington, she said.

She cited a YouTube video posted by the tourism agency that urges people to explore Delaware. The video shows beaches, parks, restaurants and historical sites as among the many attractions the First State has to offer. It seeks to convey a sense of natural beauty and wonder that officials hope attracts tourists.

Ms. Parkowski did not know the cost for replacing the signs, and a call to DelDOT was not returned.

The old signs were inconsistent, displaying different slogans depending on their age. They also needed a more modern look, something the new signs achieve, Mr. Parkowski said.

The “it’s good being first” slogan was preceded by “small wonder” and “home of tax-free shopping.”

Staff writer Matt Bittle can be reached at 741-8250 or Follow @MatthewCBittle on Twitter.

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