Tourism Yorkton made its annual report to Yorkton Council Monday covering 2013 operations.
“The official launch of Tourism Yorkton’s Community Action Plan in June created a working document that sets attainable goals to support economic growth, development and ongoing enhancements to our tourism industry,” Neil Thom president of Tourism Yorkton (TY) told Council. “By setting new goals that are quantifiable with measurable results, Tourism Yorkton is well positioned to grow travel receipt dollars.
“The Action Plan outlined 10 steps to enhance economic benefits for all stakeholders.”
One of the steps was to further utilize the Yorkton Visitor Centre.
Thom said in terms of utilizing the Centre TY has entered into a new deal with the provincial tourist organization.
“Through Tourism Saskatchewan, the Visitor Centre has been contracted for a 2014 pilot project to provide enhanced service and trucking for visitors,” he said. “The added responsibilities will allow us to hire additional staff and from May to September the centre will be open seven days a week with extended hours.”
Thom said such contracts are one way TY builds on what it has done in the past.
“The recent changes will also allow us to build on enhancing tourism through to the east central region which is also one of the action steps outlined in the plan,” he said.
While looking to expand serivices, Thom said they remain committed to existing programs such as supporting conventions and events in the city.
“Tourism Yorkton provided over 2000 welcome packages throughout the year to a host of organizations and in 2014 we already are preparing for the Saskatchewan Union of Nurses and Sask Culture who are bringing events to our city,” he said.
Thom said TY looks to expand tourist activity to the benefit of those involved in the sector.
“Our ongoing efforts to generate economic prosperity for all the stakeholders continued throughout 2013,” he said. “Joint marketing efforts, trade shows, print, electronic and social media along with partnerships for training and education have all insured your investment and continued support for Tourism Yorkton is money well spent.”
With tourism comes economic stimulus for the city.
“Tourism continues to be an important economic driver and competition for travel dollars is at an all time high,” said Thom. “Providing employment for more than 1000 people and travel receipts in the tens of millions, tourism plays an important role in our local economy.”
And Thom said the activity created via tourism is likely to carry forward. He said, “2014 looks to be an exciting year with opportunities to expand our tourism capacity while continuing to promote Yorkton as a premium four season destination.”