Ig­nit­ing tourism spirit

Sum­mit held in Lans­downe

The Gananoque Reporter - - FRONT PAGE - LOR­RAINE PAYETTE

The lower floor of the Com­mu­nity Build­ing on Jessie Street in Lans­downe was filled with pre­sen­ters and in­ter­ested at­ten­dees as the Town­ship of Leeds and the Thou­sand Is­lands pre­sented the tourism sum­mit Ig­nite In­spi­ra­tion on Nov. 24.

“The Town­ship of Leeds and the Thou­sand Is­lands (TLTI) and mem­bers of its Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee ex­tend grat­i­tude to the many res­i­dents, tourism providers and busi­ness own­ers who par­tic­i­pated in the Ig­nite In­spi­ra­tion Tourism Sum­mit,” said Amy Webb, Com­mu­nity/Busi­ness Outreach As­sis­tant, Town­ship of Leeds and the Thou­sand Is­lands. “It was a suc­cess­ful day filled with en­gag­ing busi­nesses, mak­ing con­nec­tions and sourc­ing lo­cal.”

Th­e­six hour event had sev­eral ex­hibitors as well as two pan­els – one made up of suc­cess­ful lo­cal busi­ness peo­ple who came out to in­spire the par­tic­i­pants and a sec­ond of dif­fer­ent tourism or­ga­ni­za­tions. Ge­orge Hor­ton,Com­mit­tee Chair, opened the event by in­tro­duc­ing MP Gord Brown, Leeds-Grenville-Thou­sand Is­lands and Rideau Lakes, and New York State Assem­bly­woman Ad­die Jenne, who had come up specif­i­cally to speak at the sum­mit.

“This is a truly in­ter­na­tional tourism event, and I want to wel­come Ad­die Jenne, Assem­bly­woman from just across the river” said MP Brown. “We are hav­ing an ac­tual in­ter­na­tional Thou­sand Is­lands Tourism event. I want to thank the Town­ship for or­ga­niz­ing this sum­mit. I think this is a great idea to put this on and to look at all of the pos­si­bil­i­ties of how we can en­hance tourism here. We have so many won­der­ful as­sets here – the Fron­tenac Arch Bio­sphere Re­serve, mul­ti­cul­tural tourism, and so many peo­ple here to­day with won­der­ful pre­sen­ta­tions on how we can en­hance tourism.”

“I rep­re­sent es­sen­tially from Sacket’s Har­bour to Massena, the en­tire St. Lawrence River Val­ley,” said Ad­die Jenne, NYS Assem­by­woman for Jef­fer­son and Lewis Coun­ties. “I am very lucky in that re­gard – I have the most beau­ti­ful Dis­trict in all of New York State. We’re hop­ing that (this year’s high water) was an anom­aly, and from a tourism per­spec­tive that’s at the top of all of our minds... We have a lot of work todo– we­have tomake sure that our nat­u­ral at­trac­tions and the peo­ple that are wel­com­ing our vis­i­tors are up to that level of visi­ta­tion. Iwant to see how we can bet­ter part­ner with you (here in Canada) so that we are a global des­ti­na­tion.”

Key­note speaker for the morn­ing was Carol Green­wood, Mem­ber­ship and Busi­ness De­vel­op­ment, Tourism In­dus­try of On­tario, who spoke on in­sight to lo­cal tourism de­vel­op­ment.

“We wanted to share with you what we do be­cause we are your voice with the provin­cial gov­ern­ment,” said Green­wood. “Tourism drives the econ­omy, tourism mat­ters, and tourism cre­ates jobs.

Shar­ing their suc­cess sto­ries with the par­tic­i­pants were “The Opini­con” (Peter-McFar­land) on Sourc­ing Lo­cally/ So­cial Me­dia Pro­mo­tion; “Red Fish Cot­tages” (Su­san Ma­galas) on Part­ner­ing and Pack­ag­ing; “Fron­tenac Arch Bio­sphere” (Liz Harder) on Hid­den Trea­sures – Amaz­ing Places; “1,000 Is­lands Kayak­ing” (Scott Ewart) on Pro­fes­sion­al­ism and Cus­tomer Ser­vice; and “Royal The­atre” (Frayne-Mc­Carthy) on Op­er­at­ing In theOff- Sea­son.

The af­ter­noon panel was made up of Blair Har­ris from the Min­istry of Tourism, Bonnie Rud­dock of The Great Wa­ter­way, and Gary-De-Young of the 1,000 Is­lands In­ter­na­tional Tourism Coun­cil. Their topic of dis­cus­sion was how to cre­ate links in­side our com­mu­ni­ties.

A pre­sen­ta­tion was also made by Guy LaFlamme, Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Ot­tawa 2017, on “Own Your Iden­tity to Cre­ate a Positive Rep­u­ta­tion and In­voke Sus­tain­abil­ity”. It was filled with a va­ri­ety of ideas on pro­mot­ing lo­cal ar­eas and in­spir­ing tourists to visit them.

The theme of lunch was “a taste of lo­cal flavour”, sourced, pre­pared and served by Wendy’s Coun­try Mar­ket.

“This Sum­mit was a cul­mi­na­tion of the com­mu­nity’s in­put and feed­back,” said Webb. Staff want to bring you more events like this. If there is a key eco­nomic driver that you would like to pro­file, please share your ideas with us at amy@town­shipleeds.on.ca.”

LOR­RAINE PAYETTE/ FOR POST­MEDIA NET­WORK

MP Gord Brown, NYS Assem­bly­woman Ad­die Jenne, and Kathrine Chris­tensen of 1,000 Is­lands Ac­com­mo­da­tion Part­ners all came out to par­tic­i­pate in the Ig­nite In­spi­ra­tion Tourism Sum­mit held in Lans­downe on November 24, 2017.

Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Com­mit­tee Chair Ge­orge Hor­ton em­ceed the Ig­nite In­spi­ra­tion Tourism Sum­mit held in Lans­downe on November 24, 2017.

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