Ten individuals, groups and events have been recognized for their contributions to Manitoba’s tourism industry.
The 10 were honoured at Travel Manitoba’s 19th annual Manitoba Tourism Awards dinner, held on Tuesday night in Winnipeg.
"Manitoba’s success as a tourism destination is linked directly to the achievements of those businesses and individuals who have been recognized by the Manitoba Tourism Awards," Travel Manitoba president and CEO Colin Ferguson said. "What all of 51 nominees, 30 finalists and 10 winners have in common is the ability to offer exceptional service and engaging and distinctive experiences that are the core of our province’s tourism industry."
Here is a list of this year’s award winners and what Travel Manitoba had to say about each of them:
Jane Harkness, Aspiring Youth Award: As the assistant curator and tour guide at the Virden Pioneer Home Museum, Jane, a high school student, has shared her passion for local heritage by creating and promoting special events and exhibits.
Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes’ Snowdance Festival of Music + Winter, Event of the Year Award (budget under $5,000): Combing the intriguing characters and talented artists that work at Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes with a passion for nature and winter sport has resulted in a festival which has had a positive impact on the entire community of Falcon Lake.
Fire and Water Music Festival, Event of the Year Award (budget over $5,000): This festival for artists by artists added new programming features and shifted marketing efforts to a younger demographic, resulting in an increase in attendance of 60 per cent.
Bill Brereton, Volunteer of the Year Award: An explorer, storyteller and visitor-ambassador: Bill has dedicated more than four decades to the preservation and presentation of Manitoba heritage in his work with the Royal Aviation Museum of Western Canada.
Feast Café and Bistro, Indigenous Tourism Award: This Winnipeg restaurant is showcasing Indigenous culture and immersing guests in a modern Indigenous experience. The menu, the artwork and décor highlight the unique history and current opportunities within the Indigenous community and the community at large.
Assiniboine Park Conservancy’s Dinosaurs Alive!, Innovation Award: Added to Assiniboine Park Zoo’s ranking as a must-see tourist destination, Dinosaur’s Alive! offered an additional visitor experience, included with regular admission, that appealed to dinosaur enthusiasts of all ages.
Clear Lake Country, Marketing Excellence Award: A marketing campaign designed to increase awareness and visitation to Riding Mountain National Park for the Winter Adventure Weekend saw strong social media results as well as local businesses reaping the rewards of increased visitation.
Winnipeg Folk Festival & Birds Hill Provincial Park, Partnership Award: Working together for 44 years, these partners have strengthened and evolved their relationship, working collaboratively to ensure an excellent festival experience as well as proper care and preservation of the park.
Raquel Lincoln, Award of Distinction (individual): Thanks to innovative marketing and outstanding customer service, Raquel’s entrepreneurial success in the north Whiteshell includes turning Pinewood Lodge into one of the region’s top resorts and spearheading the area’s TransCanada Trail development.
Frontiers North Adventures, Winnipeg Airports Authority Award of Distinction (business): Marking 30 years in operation, Frontiers North Adventures delivers quality nature experiences in a sustainable and responsible manner, inspiring guests to become invested in Manitoba’s north.
Travel Manitoba also recognized the 2017 Canada Summer Games during the awards ceremony for its contributions to the province’s tourism industry.
Nominations for the Manitoba Tourism Awards are submitted by industry peers and finalists and winners were selected by an industry-based judging panel. Winners receive a trophy and the right to use the Manitoba Tourism Award symbol for advertising and promotion as well as promotion on Travel Manitoba’s website.
Updated on Thursday, September 21, 2017 at 8:44 AM CDT: Photo added.