Greetings from the Visitor Centre! If you haven?t heard we have moved upward in the Tourism world. We are now a full-status Visitor Centre; up from being a Visitor Information Booth. This is great news for the community! Soon you will see all new signs and flags going up at the Visitor Centre.

Having this new signage means that visitors to Tumbler Ridge will now know they will receive the high quality service that Tourism British Columbia Visitor Centres afford. This includes having our summer students trained as Visitor Information Councellors and as SuperHostĀ® ambassadors which will now be offered right here in Tumbler Ridge starting in May. Tourism BC retail gifts will be available at the centre as well. The centre will receive a whole new face lift this year; please watch for our Grand Opening in June.

Becoming a Visitor Centre opens up a huge network of resources that will be utilized at the centre. This includes access to statistical information, access to online training materials and invitations to networking meetings and conferences that were previously unavailable to us. The Visitor Centre network consists of over 110 centres throughout British Columbia that provide consistent local, regional and provincial information to their visitors. The ?i? symbol is recognized worldwide as the place to go for information.

You might be wondering how does tourism benefit Tumbler Ridge? Here are a few things to consider:

1. Visitors coming into Tumbler Ridge purchase products and services in Tumbler Ridge which provides an economic boost to the community. Our ?working visitors? provide a huge boost to our local economy.

2. More jobs are created as tourism grows in Tumbler Ridge. The more visitors we have the more products and services they will require.

3. More and more facilities will be developed that will benefit visitors and residents alike.

4. Residents will stay in Tumbler Ridge more if we have more activities and services offered to them.

5. Improvements to our products and services will ensure that our visitors are happy with their trip to Tumbler Ridge and will tell others about their experience. More visitors = more revenue and more jobs.

6. Tumbler Ridge?s image will improve. A thriving industry means that we are THE place to be. As visitors share their attraction to Tumbler Ridge it makes it much easier to attract new businesses and new workers.

7. When visitors enjoy their stay in Tumbler Ridge they will work as Ambassadors. A happy visitor is much more likely to return, stay longer, and bring friends.

8. Visitors and hosts will both benefit by broadening their awareness of how others live.

9. Visitors will learn about our area, its unique characteristics and its people. Hosts will be encouraged to promote, preserve and appreciate what makes us unique.

10.Tourism creates community spirit and pride. When you see the excitement that visitors have when they see or do something for the first time it?s hard not to feel pride in Tumbler Ridge and to join in to look after it.

A great deal of progress has been made in tourism in Tumbler Ridge which I intend to share with all of you in my next article. Till then, have a great day! For additional information or comments, please drop by the Visitor Centre, or contact me by phone: 242-3123 or email: