Promoting the islands along Highway 16, establishing an all-islands event to attract visitors in September and lobbying BC Ferries to have a seat sale are three ideas a group of islanders concerned about tourism are planning, after they met in Tlell Thursday evening.
The group, which includes members of the QCI Chamber of Commerce and the HG Tourism Association, plan to seek funding from the $900,000 set aside by the province for tourism marketing following the March sinking of the Queen of the North.
“I think we really have to work on the short haul, because a lot of people are really hurting,” said Dutes Dutheil of Tlell.
One idea the group is planning, called ‘Island Ambassadors’, would see several islanders travelling across the northwest promoting the islands in person and in the media in communities from Prince Rupert to Edmonton. The group also plans to organize an all-islands event in September, possibly a beach barbecue, to attract visitors and islanders alike. The idea is to make September less of a shoulder season for tourism.
As well, the group discussed the fact that BC Ferries is now having a seat sale on some southern routes, and decided to see if a similar sale could be held on the Prince Rupert-Skidegate route, to make up for the month when the islands had little or no ferry service.
The group plans to approach the provincial fund with its ideas, and will be meeting again soon to get things rolling.
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