Gardens British Columbia, where I do digital strategy, online marketing, and even some grant writing, has been partnering with and helping organise the 2019 North American Garden Tourism Conference, (Warning, shameless self-promotion about to occur — I did the initial work on the conference site and set up the email marketing and analytics. Good friend and colleague, John Overall implemented the online registration and finished out the backend.) This conference is where gardens, garden marketing experts, academia, and the tourism industry meet to discuss best practices and new and emerging strategies geared to growing both sectors. Currently, garden tourism is one of the faster growing tourism markets in the world.
The 3 day conference takes place in Victoria, BC, Canada’s garden city, Sunday, November 3 to Tuesday, November 5, 2019. Conference delegates and speakers are coming from Canada, the US, Europe, Korea, and Japan. The majority of conference delegates are expected to be from Canada and the US — to register, go to the Garden Tourism Conference Registration page.
Gardens BC members, Brian White, Ph.D., Program Head for the Master of Arts in Tourism Management at Royal Roads University with speak on the tourism opportunities around the Garden Bathingphenomenon.Kate Onos-Gilbert, récipient of the Order of the Tulip, and owner/operator of both the Chilliwack Tulip Festival and the Chilliwack Sunflower Festival will tell us how she got From a Tulip Bulb Farm to a Garden Tourism Attraction. And Dave Cowen, CEO of The Butchart Gardens and president emeritus of Gardens British Columbia will update us on British Columbia’s garden tourism strategy.
In addition, the Canadian Garden Tourism Awards and the Top 10 North American Gardens Worth Travelling For will be announced at the Awards Luncheon on Monday, November 4, 2019. Watch this space for further exciting details.
The Garden Tourism Conference is managed by the Canadian Garden Council, and organised in collaboration with tourism and destination marketing partners: Destination Greater Victoria, The Butchart Gardens, and Gardens British Columbia. Sponsorship partners include: the American Public Gardens Association , Communities in Bloom, and the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association. Read the conference invitation and media release.
The 2019 conference theme is: Taking Garden Tourism to the Next Level. You can read the full conference program and discover the wide range of topics which will be presented, from How a Flower Changed Portland Oregon to Beyond the Garden: the Chelsea Fringe Festival a Model for Activating Cities and Regions.
At the 2017 Garden Tourism Conference in Toronto, British Columbia gardens received more than 10 garden tourism awards. I’m excited for all gardens and garden industry members in B.C., good luck at the awards luncheon, and hope to see you at the conference.
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