I’m going to British Columbia again this spring to present at BC’s first Conference on Rural Tourism.
The conference will be held near Chase – too far to visit one of my all time favorite rural tourism destinations, Revelstoke, B.C.. But hey, maybe I’ll find another fav on my way up and back.
The conference is sponsored by Thompson Rivers University School of Tourism, and the list of presenters is pretty impressive.
Any readers in the rural regions of Washington and Oregon are close enough to drive, to take advantage of this opportunity.
Who can resist the draw of British Columbia! Their magnificent advertising during the Winter Olympics had me packing my bags in the middle of February. Heck! Everyone should fly into Kamloops or Kelowna and join us!
The thing I’m delighted to see is the good mix of hands-on learning opportunities for rural destinations with a promise that you’ll go home with skills you can immediately implement.
Thompson Rivers U’s School of Tourism has been responsible for an excellent series of studies of rural tourism issues they call the Tourism Research Innovation Project. I’m always pleased to see attention given to understanding the differences between rural and urban tourism.
We’re just not the same, and our needs are not the same. It amuses me that worldwide, states, provinces and countries use images of their rural beauty to market travel to their urban tourism centers!
In rural areas, the businesses that serve visitors support families not corporations.
In rural areas, a few hundred visitors a month can mean the difference between poverty and new found prosperity for a whole community.
In rural areas, sustainability and stewardship is about the environment we actually live in.
When you read about the Thompson Rivers University TRIP project you learn that they truly understand this.
And when you read who will be presenting at this great conference, you’ll see opportunities to expand your understanding of the craft, value and opportunity of rural tourism as well as gaining some new valuable skills.
I’ll be talking about Explorer Tourism and the work of the Kansas Sampler Foundation in Kansas, US. Everyone should know about the great work for rural communities that Marci Penner is doing, and I’m making it my personal mission to make that happen.
Are there any good rural tourism conferences happening in your corner of the world this year?