The 5th annual Tourism Development Conference took place in Strathmore this year. The 2015 theme was “venture to discovery;” industry leaders and tourism professionals gathered to discuss the best methods to promote Alberta as a top national and international tourist destination. This year’s conference gala diner was sponsored by the Calgary Stampede. The Stampede also brought Trevor Panczak to entertain the conference attendees!

Pictured: performer, Trevor Panczak.
Pictured: performer, Trevor Panczak.

The two and a half day conference allowed for participants to celebrate the success of Alberta’s tourism industry: the beauty of our natural wonders as well as our unique brand of western hospitality that bring in more than 35 million visitors annually. Keynote speakers included: Roberta Bondar, Canada’s first female astronaut, Robin Esrock, travel journalist and TV host, and David McKenna, president of Brewster Travel Canada.

Stampede board member, Terri Mckinnon shares insight on the importance of tourism.
Stampede board member, Teri McKinnon shares insight on the importance of partnerships and tourism.

This conference was all about fostering:

The development of a strong Canadian Badlands identity and branding shared by municipal leaders and tourism operators, making the region unique in the eyes of both residents and visitors alike.

  • The development of exciting new tourism products or the expansion of current offerings based on innovative ideas from the conference.
  • Enhanced market-readiness among Canadian Badlands tourism operators.
  • Increased environmental and socio-cultural sustainability leading to economic sustainability and a better quality of life through sustainable tourism and strategic planning.
  • A cross-fertilization of ideas starting during the Conference, with the potential for increased cross-promotion of businesses and potential packaging and partnerships.

The Stampede supports Canadian Badlands tourism initiatives as we hope to enhance our guests experiences after visiting the city of Calgary. The Badlands region is a fossil hotbed– not to mention the home of the Calgary Stampede Ranch.

The Calgary Stampede Ranch, which covers a total of 23,000 acres near Hanna. This beautiful, natural environment is home to more than 400 stock horses from the renowned “Born to Buck” breeding program.

Stampede Ranch 029

It was another exciting conference and a great time was had by all. We couldn’t have been more proud to be a part of it!

Pictured: Robin Esrock and Lindsay Jardine. Esrock's new book, "The Great Canadian Bucket List" includes The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth!
Pictured: Robin Esrock and Lindsay Jardine. Esrock’s new book, “The Great Canadian Bucket List” includes The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth!