Monday, December 15, 2008

Sport Tourism Strategy Released

The City of Thunder Bay's new Sport Tourism strategy was approved by City Council on December 8, 2008. Sport tourism is worth an estimated $40 million annually for the local economy so a greater focus on this segment of the tourism industry is key to a healthy sustainable local tourism industry buy building on the City's advantages as a sport tourism destination.

The policy, three years in development, is a significant milestone for both the Tourism and Recreation Divisions as it will create an enhanced and more formalized working relationship between the two divisions that will deliver greater results for the local tourism industry.

Based on the research and findings, the proposed Sport Tourism Events and Activities Policy recommends that the City continue to encourage and strengthen its support to the hosting of sport events that attract significant numbers of visitors to Thunder Bay.
The proposed vision for Thunder Bay is to be recognized as a leading sport host community by successfully hosting major sporting events and activities that attract visitors from outside the City. Maximizing sport opportunities through a shared City vision will:
-Build community pride and spirit
-Benefit the local sport system through the development of volunteers, athletes, coaches, officials, and facilities
-Generate positive economic benefit by attracting and hosting visitors
-Showcase Thunder Bay to national and international audiences
-Promote health and active living

In order to develop sport tourism opportunities, the proposed Sport Tourism Events and Activities Policy recommends that the City:
-assist local sport organizations to attract and host single-sport championships (international, national, provincial and regional);
-host multi-sport games either as the lead host or by supporting other community organizations to host;
-develop sport facility infrastructure;
-attract participants and spectators to sports events;
-help create new sport tourism events and activities as well as supporting existing annual ones;
-promote Thunder Bay as a training site.

For more information on the Sport Tourism Strategy, contact Paul Burke at pburke

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