When is your child’s Graduation Celebration is at Kenora Catholic?

For Year End Schedule of Events

click here.

Ontario's Sunset Country Travel Association is hoping to see more tourists in northwestern Ontario this summer. Sunset Country's executive director, Gerry Cariou, spoke about the upcoming summer season for the region.

“I would expect that we will get back to 2016 numbers. In 2017, there was a slight decline in American travellers, who represent the biggest spenders in the region. They’re typically here to hunt or fish. I’m hoping that we will get back to 2016 numbers,” he said.

In 2017, there was a lower occupancy rate at local lodges than previous years. Sales numbers from local retailers also saw a decline. Although, there was a roughly five to seven per cent increase in border crossing traffic. Cariou says that even though there was a decrease last year, the association has been seeing a decent amount of questions and inquires about the region so far in 2018.

“The inquiries into the region are steady this year. Last year we had a record year for inquiries, yet the overall response was low. I’m still expecting that we’re going to have a good season for tourism,” he said.

Cariou adds that if the region hopes to see increased tourism numbers in 2018, local businesses may want to stay open a few hours longer than usual. Cariou says that it’s a common comment made by tourists who visit the area.

“One issue we see in Kenora, is that some of the local businesses don’t stay open later in the summer. The tourists are doing window shopping, but they can’t get into the door. I’m not one to tell a business what to do, but one issue that has been identified, is that they want to shop in the evening. The tourists spend the day fishing or out on the lake, and they want to shop in the evening. The longer you’re open, the more customers you’re going to get,” he said.

Cariou adds that local business owners know what’s best for their business, but staying open just a bit longer may help the region as a whole – not just that business in particular – when it comes to tourism.

“It’s important that we all look at tourism as a seasonal thing here, it happens throughout the year, but we focus on the summer season for a good reason. If we work together in being open to tourists, being tourist-friendly, that really helps how tourism benefits our economy and how it helps people. How can we better work together, how can we access different markets and how do we get people excited to come to Sunset Country. We have to improve on those things over time,” he said.

In 2017, Kenora ratepayers paid about 27 cents each for the services provided by the tourism marketing association. Its budget of $470,000 dwarfed the city's tourism budget of up to $50,000.

Cariou has led the association for 19 of its 43 years.

For more information:

Tourism ‘wasn’t as good as expected’ in NWO

More Local News

Campers taken to hospital

Campers on Lake of the Woods received medical attention, after a lightning strike during last night's storm. Officers from the Kenora OPP responded by boat around 7 p.m. last night, and they were…

Mounties search for missing teen

Officers with the Merritt, B.C., detachment of the RCMP are looking for a runaway. Taylor Shackley, 15, was last seen yesterday afternoon, and she's believed to be hitching rides across western…

Enrolment to dip at Kenora Catholic

Enrolment for the Kenora Catholic District School Board is projected to be 1,398 next year. This is down about 28 from 1,426 for 2017. Staff have also estimated a small shortfall of $111,000 on a…

All about barbecue

For Darren Worth of DesMoines, Iowa, ribs are serious business. He was part of the competition yesterday, during Smoke on the Water in Kenora. "It's just about getting the ultimate. They're not…

It's about respect, Nault

MP Bob Nault was a special guest speaker at yesterday's Pride parade in Kenora. As he took shelter from the rain, he said it was important to show support and respect the lifestyles of others. "It's…

Waawaate revisits Agokwe in Kenora

Waawaate Fobister performed his award-winning show Agokwe yesterday in Kenora. "It's always a bit nerve wracking doing it at home," he said, noting the inherent potential for distractions. With a…

Teen located

James Fleury-Wolke has been found. Police located the 15-year-old yesterday. He was last seen on June 10, and he was returned safe to his residence. The Kenora OPP would like to thank the public for…

Students celebrate year-end

Grade 5 students at Valleyview had a good send-off before summer. Lake L'Hirondelle talks about their potluck lunch... "I have a fruit shishkabob. It has apples, strawberries and grapes. It's sweet…

KCDSB invests in St. Louis

Students at St. Louis School will have a new outdoor learning environment when they return to school in September. The Kenora Catholic District School Board has allocated $240,000 within the Capital…

Hats off for Saints Class of 2018

77 graduates make up the St. Thomas Aquinas Class of 2018 and they’re ready for the next journey in their lives. The evening began with O Canada, prayers and greetings, followed by a variety of…

KenoraOnline.com is Kenora's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide

Login