The Columbia Cultural Tourism Association has been quietly busy laying the groundwork for our future. It’s time we let you, our Stakeholders and Champions, know what we’ve been up to.
The final report from our Place-Based Cultural Tourism expert, Steven Thorne, has landed in the Valley. It is called A Tapestry of Place – A Place-Based Cultural Tourism Strategy For The Columbia Valley, and it is attached to this newsletter. If you are unable to receive it, just email the CCTA and we will get a copy to you. Steven Thorne’s broad and insightful analysis details what cultural tourism strengths we already have, how we can improve some attractions and services, and what we will need to develop in the future. The last section of the report gives detailed and specific recommendations for how to boost our current tourism sector in the near-term, and how to develop a strong cultural tourism base throughout the valley in years to come.
Click here to download a copy of the report.
The CCTA Board of Directors has dedicated over 20 meeting hours and countless research and development time to absorb the report’s recommendations, align them to Valley and CCTA priorities, and come up with a concrete set of specific tasks and projects that will make a real difference. We have identified 21 projects to carry forward in three phases, and developed a detailed business plan to make it happen.
Now we know the direction we need to go and we have the roadmap to follow. The Valley’s will to make the journey is apparent and abundant – many of you have been asking us for details on our plans, eager to get going on cultural tourism.
The Next Forum
Our next Forum has been delayed due to some ongoing health concerns with Steven Thorne. We anticipate his return to the Valley in April for our next Forum, where he will officially present his report and we will update everyone on our plans. One plan will be the ongoing development of a strong Board of Directors for the CCTA. We will be actively recruiting new Directors to fill present and future vacancies, with the intent to evolve the Board as the Association evolves from vision and planning to management and action.
Projects and actions need a base of operations from which to be realized, and a Coordinator to bring them to life. The CCTA is gathering the resources to open an office and hire a Coordinator. We expect to have the position staffed and the doors open by September 2014, to begin enacting our plans for the 2015 tourism season. The Columbia Valley is poised to add place-based cultural tourism to our established recreational tourism offerings. The road is paved for us to develop our unique sense of place, and to grow the attractions, services, and marketing needed to bring it to life. Read A Tapestry of Place, the blueprint. Attend the next Forum and hear the CCTA business plan, our Valley-specific projects and action steps. Continue to show the strong support for cultural tourism and the work of the Columbia Cultural Tourism Association that you already have. As our Stakeholders and Champions, you help us in our efforts to promote communication, collaboration, and cooperation throughout the Columbia Valley for the betterment of all.
The CCTA Board of Directors