The group "12:30" gathered in Fairmont on Thursday to learn more about turning the city into a "River Town".
Marion County Commission committed $1 million in June to revitalize Palatine Park, and ideas have been flowing ever since.
The River Town program helps to leverage and complement the expertise and resources of existing community and economic development organizations across a given region.
The goals of a River Town are to be a welcoming stop for visitors, integrate natural resources into the community, grow business, and attract visitors.
"When visitors come to a community and look for authentic people, welcoming people, and communities that care about their heritage," said Cathy McCollum, River Town program. "People that care about their appearance, that put value on their assets, those are the kinds of towns that people want to come again and again to visit."
McCollum said the number of people experiencing the outdoors continues to increase every year. As baby boomers lead longer lives and healthier lifestyles, they are seeking outdoor experiences in record numbers.
More and more residents and businesses locate where they and their employees have access to trails and rivers, according to McCollum.
The group will work with other groups as riverfront plans come together.