Putting Vernon on the map

Promoting the Thompson-Okanagan as a certified biosphere destination was among the topics discussed at the City of Vernon's second annual Tourism Open House.

The event brought together local tourism stakeholders, vendors and educational presentations on Thursday.

Biosphere certification promotes sustainable tourism and policies that commit to sustainability under a voluntary system that embraces the United Nations' 17 sustainable development goals. These include:

  • Inclusive and sustainable economic growth.
  • Social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction.
  • Resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change.
  • Cultural values, diversity and heritage.
  • Mutual understanding, peace and security. 

Keynote speaker Matt Ball of the North Okanagan Cycling Society talked about how local businesses can capitalize on the growing popularity of cycling. 

Ideas included making shopping areas bike friendly by providing secure bike storage and bike/rider wash stations. 

"It's another economic plank in everything we do," Mayor Victor Cumming said of increasing connections between tourism and cyclists.

Other topics of discussion included how to access the Chinese tourist market, working with Tourism Vernon and the role of Visitor Centre staff in marketing the area.

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