The Columbia Cultural Tourism Association (CCTA) may not have grabbed many headlines in recent months, but the group is still chugging ahead, contributing to multiple projects around the Upper Columbia Valley.
When The Echo last reported on the association, it was trying to raise $20,000 in funds, which was a requirement to keep a $100,000 grant given to the association by the Columbia Valley Directed Funds Committee.
“We approached a lot of different industry people, trying to raise that $20,000, but in the end we couldn’t make that happen, so we agreed to reallocate the grant back to the directed funds committee with the intent that the money would go to other collaborative efforts to further build on what we have in the valley,” said association member Pat Bavin, adding that the association now has a seat on the valley-wide branding and marketing initiative
In addition, the association has been building ties with the Columbia Valley Community Foundation, helped start up the Friday evening Artwalk in Invermere, is working with other groups on developing more tourism-based signage around the valley, and is contributing to the ongoing push to create a Columbia Valley food corridor.
“We’ll continue to network, to sit at the table on the (marketing and branding) committee and to help establish a large collective of cultural-tourism focused groups here in the valley,” said Bavin. “There’s a substantial shift taking place in the valley and we’re right in the middle of it. It’s really exciting; a lot of the collaboration, communication, coordination and cooperation we’ve been trying to build is starting to bubble up.”
The association is also working with Kootenay Rockies Tourism on a tourism planning workshop.
“With Kootenay Rockies Tourism, we are building some new blocks and reconstructing some old blocks,” said Bavin. “It should be interesting.”
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