By Sarah Klein
The year-long Manitoba Homecoming 2010 celebration to draw in former provincial residents and attract new ones appears to have exceeded its own expectations.
Economic Development Winnipeg Inc. is contributing the seven percent increase in tourism to the city during that year partially due to its efforts with the campaign. Statistics Canada released figures last week showing visitor expenditures also increased by five percent.
Marina James, the CEO of Economic Development Winnipeg Inc., says the organization takes credit for at least $14.7 million of the $506 million in expenditures that year.
“Total attendance at some 400 Homecoming-affiliated events was over 200,000, and those additional visitors contributed to Homecoming’s economic impact,” James said.
Winnipeg would normally see visitor expenditure growth in the range of 1.7 to 2 percent during any given year, according to James.
Homecoming 2010 was an initiative created jointly by Travel Manitoba and Tourism Winnipeg, and supported by the province. The campaign’s $3.5 million budget was spent largely on marketing across Manitoba, throughout Canada and internationally.