Rural tourism focus of symposium at Lang Pioneer Village near Peterborough

Rural Tourism Symposium at Lang Pioneer Village near Peterborough
Tourist businesses and associations meet to discuss new ideas for encouraging tourists to come to rural Ontario

According to Peterborough and the Kawarthas Tourism, 3 million people visit the area every year.

Keeping those tourists coming and encouraging others to join them in places like Peterborough was the focus of a rural tourism symposium at Lang Pioneer Village Thursday. Now in its second year, the Rural Tourism Symposium was created by operators and promoters to share information and best practices when it comes to expanding and growing rural tourism opportunities.

“For small rural communities like ours, helping people understand that tourism is connected, it’s more than just boating and hiking and large scale events, it’s truly a way of life nowadays and people love it,” says Tracie Bertrand, with Peterborough and the Kawarthas Tourism

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Beth Potter, president and CEO of the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario, says members need to stress the latest attractions rural communities can offer.

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“There’s certainly been a great focus on ‘taste of place’ and all the amazing producers, whether it’s food or drink that exist in rural ontario and the experiences that go along with that,” she said. “Agri-tourism is another big component of that.  It’s getting out of your regular life and experiencing something that is different.”

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Bertrand with Peterborough and the Kawarthas Tourism says visitors contribute $300 million to the local economy every year.