Manic Monday – Yes! Tourism Matters

Midnight Musings from our CEO

There is a feeling that can best be described as awe-inspiring when you step into any one of our historical government buildings located across this country. Whether you are visiting the House of Parliament in Ottawa or in our own Provincial Legislature in Victoria the magnitude of the work that has taken place during this country’s brief history, always causes me to take pause.

There has been incredible dedication by countless men and women to blaze a trail for our country, our provinces and our territories and it is something you can’t help but feel as you walk through every hallway, corridor, office or public area in these monumental buildings. Individuals whose tenacity, perseverance and vision for what could be possible all helped pave the way for a Canada and British Columbia that has grown into a strong collective union over the past 151 years; this coming July 1st, 2018.

It was therefore very special to once again be in the BC Legislature this past week (watch video), invited with other members of our tourism industry, to speak to the important role of that Tourism plays in our Provincial economy.  With National and Provincial Tourism Week a focus across Canada, the opportunity to present the value of this industry to our politicians in both public and private sessions was a significant move forward in ensuring that government understand and engage with the needs and concerns of our stakeholders.

The Tourism Industry is big business, contributing well over $7.4 Billion dollars to the Provincial Gross Domestic Product and employing more than 128,000 British Columbians, and these numbers are growing at staggering rates. Yes, Tourism matters! Tourism provides new money into our communities and generates economic growth into all areas of our region both large and small. It employs our youth, our seniors and the wide spectrum of ages in between. Most importantly it helps all of us to better understand ourselves and our history; to appreciate our culture, natural beauty, diversity and what it truly means to be Canadian and it helps to develop and grow national pride and unity in a way that no other industry is capable of doing.  The benefits do not stop on our doorstep as the Tourism Industry helps to tell our story to the world.

Without question, our forefathers and mothers as they debated the future of Canada did not foresee tourism as a critical component of the nations future. That vision has changed and our collective efforts are helping to make that change possible.  We may not have had a large part in the past but we know that those who will come after us will one day learn of the pioneers that helped shape this future and we know that it will be our hardwork and dedication that will make up part of the that new history.



A Few Highlights from this Week’s News Centre…

DEVOUR SHORT FILM FESTIVAL; If you are a seasoned film maker, just starting out or somewhere in between, we are looking for you to show off your skills at this years Devour, the South Okanagan’s only food wine and film festival taking place June 15th – 17th, 2018. As part of the events, TOTA is pleased to be the sponsor of the Devour Short Film Festival and looking for unique and interesting ways to present food, drink and agriculture in short video and film. For more information and how to enter go to (read more);

WORLD TRAVEL AWARDS; On the heels of the prestigious World Travel and Tourism Council’s Destination award received by the Thompson Okanagan early this year in Argentina, we are thrilled to be nominated for the upcoming World Travel Awards under the category of Responsible Tourism. This time YOU get to be the judge and help put this region in the forefront of our international markets.  To register and vote for the Thompson Okanagan go to (read more).

TOTA ANNUAL GOLF TOURNAMENT; Register now for this years TOTA Golf Tournament taking place August 30th at Black Hills Golf and Country Club. While the summer season is just beginning, we know it will go by far too quickly and we want you to be ready for some fun and relaxation when it is over. Join Us and Register Now.

Read all of this week’s News Centre stories at

Keep following and contributing to TOTA’s Facebook and Twitter sites throughout the week; send us your stories, photos, events and remarkable experiences. Make sure the industry knows what is happening around our region.  Be sure to use #route97 and #explorebc when posting your tourism shots and stories.

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