HALIFAX: A local community event was one of the winners of a provincial tourism award.

On November 22, the Tourism Industry Association of Nova Scotia (TIANS) recognized several businesses during the Crystal Tourism Awards of Excellence, as a part of the weekend-long Annual Tourism Summit “Invest In Tourism.”

Among the winners was the Antigonish Highland Games, which received the Parks Canada Sustainable Tourism Award.

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Glenn Squires, chairman with TIANS, called the conference, which is in its 39th year, one of the strongest of its kind in the country.

“We get a great turnout,” said Squires.
“It’s an opportunity for people in the industry across the province to get together and talk about the issues of the day.”

The conference, Squires said, featured seminars on topics such as tourism trends, adding that it all culminates in the gala dinner and awards.

“This year has been a strong year, last year was a good year,” said Squires. “We think, with the Canadian dollar where it is, we’re going to continue to see strong numbers but we also need to be prepared for when the Canadian dollar strengthens to make sure that our truism product is resilient.

“That’s what we’re saying to people,” he added. “While business is good, now’s the time to invest, not just in your product but in human resources and in developing new and innovative sorts of products.”

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Squires said the goals for TIANS is extending the tourism seasons in rural areas and focusing on business in urban areas.

“Big events are great for the province so we want to work to see what other ones we might be able to generate that will be with us for a long time,” he added.

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