Ignite:  Activating the Potential for Experiential Travel

Learn how to work in harmony with your tourism allies and turn products into extra-ordinary experiences

IGNITE is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for community clusters of rural tourism operators that want to create new and enhanced experiences to bring more vibrance to their community, establish a competitive position in the tourism market, create long lasting community partnerships with industry allies and increase the appeal of their destination.

Participants are immersed in a variety of program elements and meet facilitators who tailor experiences for a variety of traveler types, coming away with a deep appreciation for the value of infusing experiences with local flavours at mealtime and beyond, and inspiration to leverage their own resources to build new and exciting visitor experiences with an appreciation for the importance of community collaboration.

IGNITE program elements:

·  Identifying your ideal guest

·  ‘Who’s who’ in the travel, tourism and destination development process; destination marketing organizations, travel trade, travel media, the role of governments and more

·  Bringing together stages, animators, props and experiences

·  “Do what you do best, partner for the rest.” (TM Tourism Cafe Canada)

·  Identifying your ideal community partners, including non-traditional tourism allies

·  From farm to fork, understanding the role of regional food in authentic tourism experiences

·  Cultural and natural history and story-telling

·  Celebrating local flavours with community products

·  Identifying and leveraging community stages

·  Engaging with community partners in forestry, music and entertainment, food growers, brewmasters, guides and naturalists, trail organizations and more.

·  9 elements of successful experiential tourism products

·  Selling tourism with words, photos, audio, video

·  Moving from ME to WE

“Seeing the sights is no longer enough. Experiential travelers want to venture beyond the beaten tourist paths and dive deeper into authentic local culture, connecting with people from other cultures in deep and meaningful ways, the arts, architecture and music, cooking and food, sports, adventure and nature, language, history, economics and literature, philanthropy and a desire to “give back.” – Joe Diaz (2009) Co‐founder, Afar Magazine

While you’re here, learn how to ignite new initiatives by…

·  Experiencing an unplugged, no distractions environment designed for community growth, trust, team building and establishing new relationships

·  Visiting some of our region’s outstanding partners, eco-tourism and operators and taking part in experiences at a variety of built and natural community stages for tourism experiences

·  Establishing a community resource inventory identifying your traditional and non-traditional tourism assets

·  Identifying your ideal regional marketing themes, ideal guest profiles and discover their desired travel experiences

·  Exploring the economics of experiences and the world of pricing

·  Interviewing people on the ground in our rural community to discuss how their peers can be found and engaged in tourism within your own community·  Participating in follow-up coaching conference calls in a process of continual improvement

What’s included?

·  Transformational learning experience facilitated by course designer Todd Lucier

·  All-inclusive private, cozy forest accommodations and delicious catered meals which are tailored to all dietary needs

·  Networking and community team building opportunities

·  Pre-event program preparation, teleconference sessions and post-program coaching to ensure program participants take active steps to create new partnerships, innovate and enhance their tourism program offerings

Why come to Northern Edge?

Northern Edge Algonquin is a provincial award winner in sustainable tourism and tourism innovation and three-time national award finalist in sustainable tourism, and outdoor/adventure tourism.  The Edge is also one of only a couple of Platinum Level Green Leaders (TripAdvisor) in Canada. Co-founder Todd Lucier has provided training for thousands of tourism professionals across Canada.  He co-produced the Edge of the Wedge Experiential Tourism Training (hyperlink) for the Gros Morne Institute for Sustainable Tourism and co-founded Tourism Cafe Canada with Dr. Nancy Arsenault in 2011.

A few words from our past guests…

  • "Our hosts provided the perfect balance of rustic charm, exciting and highly enjoyable team events, great food, and spectacular scenery. I especially enjoyed the element of surprise, the sense of team accomplishment obtained, and the fun we had on every single activity. It was the ideal location to focus our team to achieve our business planning objectives."
    -Dario Vettor, Mold-Masters
  • "I was amazed at how much we packed into such a short time period, I'd come back in a flash. I really enjoyed Todd's communication style - very easygoing, but thought provoking."
    -Sally Thompson, Vice President, Halsall Associates

How are retreats affected by COVID-19?

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