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Nov 4, 2022

TIABC Voice of Tourism Newsletter – November 4th, 2022



When car manufacturers introduced vehicles with DVD players, I thought nothing of piling the kids into our new mini-van and driving 18 hours straight to Christopher Lake in Northern Saskatchewan to stay with family at the cottage. Playing videos as we travelled stopped the kids from asking, are we there yet? every 10 minutes and also kept me awake (along with several cups of coffee). We did that trip so often, I knew every line in the movie School of Rock even though I never actually saw the film.

For the most part, the days of long drives for vacation are over for me, but not necessarily so for business trips. Case in point…this week I put upwards of 1,700 kms on my rental car in three days travelling from the Vancouver Coast & Mountains region, to the Thompson Okanagan, on to the Kootenay Rockies region, then to the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast, and back home again.

Given how difficult it was to find convenient flights, I chose to drive an average of seven hours each day to allow me to get to various destinations on time. Although it was somewhat tiring, I thoroughly enjoyed criss-crossing BC, while taking in the incredible scenery and experiencing fall and winter-like weather along the way.

In Castlegar, I had the good fortune of attending the Kootenay Rockies Tourism Association annual general meeting and conference where I met with and presented to colleagues/friends, many of whom I hadn’t seen since before COVID.

Same for 100 Mile House, where I presented to the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (CCCTA) AGM and conference (along with Ingrid Jarrett & Richard Porges). Again, it was good to be among friends and colleagues, especially CCCTA CEO Amy Thacker who is back in the saddle after an extended leave.

My presentations focussed on seven areas with three main points in each. To begin with, I spoke about the changing political climate in BC with 70 new mayors taking their positions this month, along with a new premier about to assume the province’s top job, and a new tourism minister at the helm as of a few weeks ago.

I referenced three recent TIABC policies (camping reservations, short-term vacation rentals, highway signage); three budget requests to government (emergency management funding for tourism, RMI security, infrastructure funding); three challenges to tourism growth (transportation, housing, workforce); three requests to the federal government (develop tourism assets, improve visitor access; create Indigenous workforce strategy); three sector opportunities (tourism renewal, reconciliation, regenerative tourism); and three bits of information on TIABC (member survey, AGM, BC Tourism & Hospitality Conference).

It was a bit of a whirlwind trip to be sure but so worth it for many reasons. Contrary to the days when I listened to kids’ movies on road trips, there were long stretches where I had neither cell service or a radio station to listen to, let alone a DVD player. Even my hybrid rental car made little noise other than the sound of rubber on pavement at high speeds. I tried at times to recite lines from School of Rock to stay awake and alert. Sadly I couldn’t remember many.

Walt Judas,

Related Posts

TIABC Director Dennis Innes (VCC Dean of Hospitality, Culinary & Baking) and CEO Walt Judas joined term 8 hospitality students, industry leaders, recent graduates, and faculty for a Philosopher's Cafe to discuss the state of the tourism and hospitality workforce this week at VCC's downtown Vancouver campus.
TIABC CEO Walt Judas with Tourism Abbotsford’s Barb Roberts & Clare Seeley, as well as VCM’s Chad Wetsch on a site visit to a land-based Tilapia fish farm owned and operated by the Sumas First Nation who are expanding their Fraser Valley holdings with ambitious plans to bolster Abbotsford’s tourism infrastructure and experiences.
As he does regularly, TIABC CEO Walt Judas recently presented to tourism students and faculty at @westerncommunitycollege's (WCC) Surrey campus, focussing on industry issues and TIABC's advocacy priorities. Walt also serves on WCC's Program Advisory Committee (PAC), as well as the PACs of @capilanou and @myvcc.
🍽️ What an incredible farm-to-table experience! Backyard Farm Proprietor and Chef Chris Van Hooydonk welcomed TOTA's Board of Directors and guests Walt Judas, Richard Porges (DBC CEO) and Scott Fraser (DBC Chair) for a memorable meal in Osoyoos this week.

Chris's culinary philosophy focuses on utilizing the freshest, locally sourced ingredients to create unique, tailored menus for each visit. With a commitment to true hospitality, the experience is marked by attentive service and a passion for showcasing the beauty of the South Okanagan.

Also pictured, Destination Osoyoos Executive Director Kelley Glazer, TOTA CEO Ellen Walker Matthews, and TOTA's Jane Parece. 

A huge thank you to Chris for providing such a delightful culinary experience! 🌿
🎉 Highlights from the 2024 BC Tourism Industry Conference in Victoria! 🌟

Close to 450 tourism industry professionals convened in Victoria last week for the annual 2024 BC Tourism Industry Conference, hosted by TIABC. Industry leaders representing businesses, sector associations, regional and community destination management organizations, First Nations, federal, provincial and municipal governments, as well as non-government organizations gathered for the two-day event. 

Anchored by the conference theme - Shaping Our Future Together - the outstanding program provided both a knowledge and skills track via plenary sessions and workshops. Here are just a few highlights:

▪️ Opening keynote speaker Shaun Boothe shared a unique and emotional celebration of some of the world's most influential cultural icons. His energy and messages set the stage for the entire event.

▪️ Hon. Lana Popham, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture & Sport kicked off the conference by welcoming delegates and sharing her own personal story of working in BC's tourism industry.

▪️ Plenary Remarks by Hon. Soraya Martinez Ferrada: Insights from the Minister of Tourism and Economic Development Agency of Canada highlighted the industry's significance.

▪️TIABC CEO Walt Judas engaged in a compelling conversation with Premier David Eby whose remarks underscored the vital role of the tourism industry in British Columbia, earning him a standing ovation.

▪️ Opening Reception at the Royal BC Museum

A big thank you to all our sponsors for making this event possible! 🙌
Join us in celebrating the remarkable winners of the 2024 BC Tourism Industry Awards Gala presented by @indigenoustourismbc! 🎉✨ 

Ten awards were given out to recognize and celebrate excellence, leadership, and innovation within British Columbia’s tourism and hospitality sector. These awards showcased the province’s most exceptional leaders and positive change-makers this past year.

The winners of the 2024 BC Tourism Industry Awards are:

Business Woman of the Year Award - Sponsored by Prince of Whales
⭐ Winner: Ingrid Jarrett, @bchotelassociation 

Community Contribution & Impact - Sponsored by Tourism Richmond
⭐Winner: @princeofwhaleswhalewatching 

DMO Professional Excellence - Sponsored by BC Regional Tourism Secretariat (BCRTS)
⭐Winner: @visitrichmondbc 

Employees First - Sponsored by go2HR
⭐Winner: @golfbc 

Inclusive and Accessible Tourism Experience - Sponsored by Destination BC
⭐Winner: Vancouver Aquarium

Indigenous Operator or Experience | Sponsored by Indigenous Tourism BC and Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada
⭐Winner: @homalcotours

Innovation | Sponsored by Tourism Innovation Lab
⭐Winner: @tourismnewwest 

Remarkable Experience | Sponsored by BC Destination Management Organization Association (BCDMOA)
⭐Winner: @nimmobayresort

Sector Association Excellence Award | Sponsored by Acera Insurance
⭐Winner: Sport Fishing Institute of BC

Sustainability Excellence | Sponsored by Nanaimo Airport
⭐Winner: @40knotswinery 

📸 @arkitekcreative