NENC: Chris Jensen Talks About A Small Border Town Capturing Imaginations, Dollars

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A stroll through Foresta Lumina includes some sparkly, stunningly lit sections of forest. Photo by Chris Jensen

Chris Jensen’s story about Foresta Lumina in Coaticook that he did for the New England News Collaborative.  

Many small towns and cities dream about the financial security of becoming a tourist attraction. Coaticook, Quebec, which sits right on the Vermont border, pulled it off. Local officials took an unusual idea, made a $1 million gamble and hit a tourism geyser.

Coaticook has a population of around 9,200. But since the attraction opened in 2014 about 456,000 people have paid for a nighttime stroll through the Foresta Lumina.

It will air on NEXT, which airs on 5 stations in the NENC collaborative: WNPR, NEPR, VPR, NHPR and Maine Public.

Coaticook is 180 miles from Concord, N.H.

NEXT  is a weekly radio show and podcast hosted by John Dankosky, based at WNPR in Hartford, Connecticut and powered by the New England News Collaborative.

New England News Collaborative is an eight-station consortium of public media newsrooms, including Connecticut Public Broadcasting NetworkWBURMaine Public Broadcasting NetworkNew Hampshire Public RadioVermont Public RadioNew England Public RadioRhode Island Public Radio, and WSHU Public Radio.

Veteran journalist Chris Jensen covers the North Country for and can be reached at

His story for on Foresta Lumina can be found by clicking here.

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