Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Showing Some Heart

I've always said "To sell the city to the world, we have to sell it to ourselves first."

More and more throughout the community, this statement is ringing true with a increasing number of community individuals, groups and companies stepping up to show and share their pride in the community.

Johnny Debakker, who last year, created the I "Heart" TBay t-shirt, is one such individual. Now worn by hundreds, if not thousands of local residents and visitors alike, nothing so simple has had such a effect at putting smiles on people's faces and encouraging them to appreciate this fantastic community we call home. Even our entire city council has gotten in on the fun (see pic). Being proud of our city is also about knowing whats going on around us, being aware of advancements and evolution of our economy and sharing it with others to create a more positive environment around us.

Years ago, I asked a hotel clerk in El Paso Texas what there was to see in the city. The dry response was simply and unenthusiastically "Mexico." I did explore more and found the city to be vibrant and fun but I'll never forget the first response to my question.

With 692 000 visitors coming to the city annually, there are travelers every day exploring our community who may very well ask you or I for directions, recommendations on attractions, events, culinary and accommodation experiences. People ask about the economy of the city, urban legends, points of interest and other things too. That's why its important for each and every one of us to understand what we have, be proud of it and talk enthusiastically to others about what there is to explore here. At the end of the day it enhances our community's reputation and that ultimately puts people to work.

If you want to show some community pride and pick up a I "Heart" TBay shirt, visit Ozone on Memorial Ave, Lava on Brodie St, Lux on Frederica, Push Fitness on Fort William Road or The Loop on Bay St. For more info, visit http://www.ihearttbay.ca.

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