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Xplore Monadnock website to showcase region 

  • Matt Cabana talks on Mount Monadnock for a video that will be released on Thursday for his new venture, Xplore Monadnock, highlighting all the Monadnock region has to offer. Courtesy photo

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 11/9/2020 5:34:55 PM

The Monadnock region is filled with great restaurants, locally-owned shops and cultural organizations that make it a destination for visitors both near and far.

Talk to Matt Cabana for any length of time and his love for the Monadnock region is quickly evident. And he wants everyone to know just how special the area he has called home almost his entire life truly is.

“It’s about drawing people to the Monadnock region and showing off how incredible this place is,” Cabana said.

So over the last couple months, Cabana and a small group of others – Jon Mitchell, Braeden Hatfield, and Bill and Joe Plante – who share a similar passion for the region have been working to create a website that puts all those local businesses, nonprofits and entertainment organizations into the spotlight – in one easy to navigate location.

“This is meant to draw people to these local businesses,” Cabana said.

The Xplore Monadnock website has been live since August, but Monday marked the official launch of what Cabana believes is just the beginning of something big. The release of the Xplore Monadnock trailer gives a quick idea of what the venture will eventually become.

“It’s starting to get some traction, some brand awareness,” Mitchell said.

Hatfield, who was set to start college this year but instead decided to take a gap year due to the coronavirus pandemic, said “I thought it would be a great opportunity to learn these skills,” like video, interviewing and website design.

The group has put together a directory of the restaurants, businesses and services that are part of the fabric of the area with the goal of telling their stories – why they chose to open in the region, their passions and what truly makes the region such a special place to visit and live.

“It’s an endless pallet of information,” Cabana said. “There’s endless stories to be told down the road and we want to make sure people have the best experience.”

On Thursday, the first official video will be released on the Xplore Monadnock YouTube page, featuring Mount Monadnock’s White Dot Trail. Subsequent videos on Drive-In Live, Stepping Stones Farm & Event Center and Monadnock Speedway will soon make their way to the YouTube channel.

“The goal is to draw people to the YouTube Channel, to see these videos and explore the region,” Cabana said.

On the website, there are videos about Cabana’s Birchwood Inn and Tavern in Temple, which he owns with his wife Amy, the Hilltop Cafe in Wilton and others. But those are just the beginning as the plan for the website is to get as many of those personal stories out there.

“It’s about giving them a voice,” Mitchell said. “These stories are just great, learning about all the great businesses I didn’t even know where in the area.”

While Cabana knows how special this corner of New Hampshire is, he saw a need for the website during the coronavirus pandemic as businesses face an uphill battle to stay open.

“Hopefully we can help people and businesses, those who are struggling in this crazy time. This is hopefully the platform that keeps those people relevant” Cabana said. “It’s all hyper local, which is so important in the days of COVID. There’s so much going on in this region and it’s about keeping local businesses relevant in these trying times and here when this is all over.”

Since this is all relatively new, Cabana said the Xplore Monadnock website will be expanding to include anyone who wants to put their name out there. On the home page of the website, you can request an interview, something Mitchell hopes people will take advantage of.

“We’re asking the public and businesses that we don’t know about to reach out and we’ll go explore it for you,” Cabana said. “Then take it to a whole other level.”

Mitchell said the key is to get good content on the website.

“And then see where that takes us,” he said.

Cabana likens the venture to “Phantom Gourmet meets Fritz Wetherbee.”

“And right now it’s about getting it out there to the world,” he said.

For more, visit https://www.xploremonadnock.com/, https://www.facebook.com/xploremonadnock/https://www.instagram.com/xploremonadnock/ and search Xplore Monadnock on https://www.youtube.com/.

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

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