Energy! Lots of energy at the Thursday meeting from the opening anthem to the 50/50 draw. Pres Brian recognized 2 Honorary and Charter members in attendance, Roger and Judy. Recognition as well to the Christmas tree decorating team for our best tree ever in the Festival of Trees (Tracy, Sandi, Hilary, Gordon, Jim, Pam).
Reminder of the Christmas Lite-up Friday night where we will be serving hot dogs and hot chocolate in exchange for food bank donations. Sounded like several folks are planning to help out Brian between 5 and 7pm.
Our guest speaker was Kelley Glazer, our new executive director for Destination Osoyoos. She started her new role in early May of this year and spoke to us of her experience for the position and the first 6 months - a very professional and articulate speaker!
Kelley's background included several senior sales/marketing and recruitment roles in Prince George (17 years) and Victoria (10 years) involving private sector, government and First Nations. She is currently completing a masters program at Royal Roads enroute to a degree in hospitality/tourism.
Kelley has brought on an entirely new team at DO and she is excited about the talent and experience that the new staff brings. In their role as a not-for-profit society, they focus on tourism as the main economic driver in the region but economic development opportunities often go hand in hand so their strategies includes planning for both. They will continue to manage the traditional tourism events in the area and plan to add one new event in May. This is Devour Osoyoos, a festival that focuses on the film industry combined with food and wine - more to come out soon. We will see/hear more on the theme of films and culinary experiences.
She has a budget of some $600,000 to provide these tourism, economic development initiatives (miracles?) and run the visitor centre. The bulk of that ($400m) comes from the 2% hotel tax (MRDT) with the Town and RDOS granting another ($100m) for tourism and Spirit Ridge adds $50m for directing marketing services. The Town also contracts them for economic development services at $80m.
A large challenge so will be interesting to have Kelley back in a year for an update...I suspect she will be quite successful and we wish her well.
Please sign up with Brian for attendance at the Club Christmas Party on Dec 8th at Camp Marina starting at 6:30. There is a rumour that Bach and Rudolf will provide violin serenades!
A very festive meeting on the opening day of Mt Baldy!