PIPESTEM, WV (WVNS) — Governor Jim Justice visited Pipestem Resort and State Park on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 to announce additional trout releases and to celebrate the multi-million dollar renovations made to the park.

Nearly $12 million went into improving and renovating Pipestem under the Justice administration. Those improvements include the addition of a new spa, conference room renovations, and upgrades to infrastructure.

The Governor said these renovations and improvements will provide a boost to the local economy.

“By God, we’re going to make tourism explode in our state because of our beauty and the opportunities we have are off the chart,” Justice said.

The Governor said he also wants to boost tourism by providing additional trout releases. He said hunting and fishing were a huge attraction during the COVID-19 pandemic. He announced 50,000 trout will be stocked at 39 lakes and streams across West Virginia. The White Sulphur Springs National Fish Hatchery usually provides 4,000 pounds of trout, but will be sending an additional 15,000 pounds this year.

“We’ve got a lot of giant trophy fish that are going out and everybody can have a big time,” Justice said.

Chelsea Ruby, the West Virginia Tourism Office Commissioner, said she is seeing an increase in hunting and fishing licenses during the pandemic.

“We’re not just seeing them from in-state folks who are starting to get out, but it’s also out-of-state folks coming in and enjoying the great outdoors,” Ruby said.

For a list of fall stocking waters, visit here.