Oak Bay Tourism tells tales of the community

Travel writers, videographer, artwork among this year’s additions to tourism boost

Oak Bay Tourism chair Michelle Le Sage and vice chair Duncan Murphy peruse the Oak Bay Native Plant Garden. Oak Bay Tourism plans to promote the community as a desitantion across multiple platforms in 2018. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

Oak Bay Tourism chair Michelle Le Sage and vice chair Duncan Murphy peruse the Oak Bay Native Plant Garden. Oak Bay Tourism plans to promote the community as a desitantion across multiple platforms in 2018. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

Oak Bay Tourism aims to share stories this year; tales of the villages, the people and businesses take centre stage.

It’s all part of the pitch to encourage tourism from target markets to experience and become charmed with Oak Bay year-round, and to contribute to the community well-being and quality of life for residents and stakeholders.

“Oak Bay just has such a great story to start off with,” says Tourism executive chair Michelle Le Sage, general manager at Oak Bay Beach Hotel.

“It’s still got that little quaint village feel to it,” she added, noting the rise in hop-on hop-off bus riders stopping in Oak Bay.

Last fall, golf writers came and enjoyed the myriad links in the community while travel writers will visit this fall in a bid to spread the “character,” of Oak Bay. The focus lies on the people, shop owners, art and heritage.

“Travellers want to have authentic interaction with real locals,” said vice chair Duncan Murphy, owner operator of the Oak Bay Guest House.

Both feel hosting the guest writers also brings the community together, as feedback indicates they want to tell the tales.

But the biggest story of the year may come in partnership with a Seattle radio station. The U.S. station will host a vow renewal contest, where five couples come get re-wed on Oak Bay waterfront then bask in the community’s finest.

They plan to increase video and photo content for website and social media and host travel writers and industry influencers in our destination.

“It’s easy to tell this story because the story tells itself,” Le Sage “People love being here. It’s a great place to work, a great place to live and a great place to visit.”

Expect to see an Oak Bay Tourism videographer at all of the community highlights, car shows, Bowker Brush Up, Spring Nosh along with trips to the beaches, parks and gardens.

“People can get an idea of what the community is about,” Le Sage said.

Tourism also sponsors the sculpture “In-Tension” by artist Adam Tarig at Willows Beach for Oak Bay’s ArtsAlive 2018.

“It’s also about the community, working together to bring tourism to Oak Bay,” Le Sage said.

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The Destination Ambassador Program launched last year continues alongside the new and improved website from 2017.

They plan to build on Oak Bay maps developed last year that include themed-itineraries for cycling, food and walking.

Visit OakBayTourism.com to learn more.


 

cvanreeuwyk@oakbaynews.com

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