WINNIPEG — Travel Manitoba doled out hardware Tuesday night at the 19th annual Manitoba Tourism Awards, honouring the people and companies that drive tourism in the province.
“Manitoba’s success as a tourism destination is linked directly to the achievements of those businesses and individuals who have been recognized by the Manitoba Tourism Awards,” said Colin Ferguson, Travel Manitoba president and CEO.
“What all of 51 nominees, 30 finalists and 10 winners have in common is the ability to offer exceptional service and engaging and distinctive experiences that are the core of our province’s tourism industry.”
- Aspiring Youth Award
Jane Harkness: As the Assistant Curator and Tour Guide at the Virden Pioneer Home Museum, Jane, a high school student, has shared her passion for local heritage by creating and promoting special events and exhibits.
- Event of the Year Award, budget under $5,000
Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes’ Snowdance Festival of Music + Winter: Combing the intriguing characters and talented artists that work at Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes with a passion for nature and winter sport has resulted in a festival which has had a positive impact on the entire community of Falcon Lake.
- Event of the Year Award, budget over $5,000
Fire and Water Music Festival: This festival for artists by artists added new programming features and shifted marketing efforts to a younger demographic, resulting in an increase in attendance of 60%.
- Volunteer of the Year Award
Bill Brereton: An explorer, storyteller and visitor ambassador: Bill has dedicated more than four decades to the preservation and presentation of Manitoba heritage in his work with the Royal Aviation Museum of Western Canada.
- Indigenous Tourism Award
Feast Café and Bistro: This Winnipeg restaurant is showcasing Indigenous culture and immersing guests in a modern Indigenous experience. The menu, the artwork and décor highlight the unique history and current opportunities within the Indigenous community and the community at large.
- Innovation Award
Assiniboine Park Conservancy: Dinosaurs Alive!® added to Assiniboine Park Zoo’s ranking as a must-see tourist destination by offering an additional visitor experience, included with regular admission, that appealed to dinosaur enthusiasts of all ages.
- Marketing Excellence Award
Clear Lake Country: A marketing campaign designed to increase awareness and visitation to Riding Mountain National Park for the Winter Adventure Weekend saw strong social media results as well as local businesses reaping the rewards of increased visitation.
- Partnership Award
Winnipeg Folk Festival & Birds Hill Provincial Park: Working together for 44 years, these partners have strengthened and evolved their relationship, working collaboratively to ensure an excellent festival experience as well as proper care and preservation of the park.
- Award of Distinction – Individual
Raquel Lincoln: Thanks to innovative marketing and outstanding customer service, Raquel’s entrepreneurial success in the north Whiteshell includes turning Pinewood Lodge into one of the region’s top resorts and spearheading the area’s TransCanada Trail development.
- Winnipeg Airports Authority Award of Distinction – Business
Frontiers North Adventures: Marking 30 years in operation, Frontiers North Adventures delivers quality nature experiences in a sustainable and responsible manner, inspiring guests to become invested in Manitoba’s north.
The 2017 Canada Summer Games were also recognized during the ceremony at the Manitoba Museum’s Alloway Hall for its contributions to the province’s tourism industry.