LGSA Tourism Conference

Venue: Engadine Community Centre, Engadine, NSW
PCO: LGSA Event staff
Date: March 9 – 11

This is the seventh year this  conference has been run and according to the delegates who have attended most of them, this was among the best.
The conference brings together tourism managers, elected representatives and others from local authorities around NSW.
The day before the conference begins is taken up with workshops and a Tourism Managers’ Exchange.
The conference had a strong lineup of speakers beginning with a young woman I’d not seen before called Rachel Botsman. Rachel is a new media specialist who talks about what she calls “collaborative consumption” She talked about the myriad of new social media tools that are available and how they were born out of ideas people had about connecting needs with solutions. Ideal stuff for tourism marketing.
A panel comprising councillors, tourism mangers and Evan Hall from Tourism and Transport Forum discussed the recommendations of the Tourism Taskforce established by the NSW Government.
The welcome reception was held at  the Symbio Wildlife Park on the edge of the Royal National Park. What a great facility! 
Gerry Gannon and unnamed reptile!
The attached photo shows me in earnest conversation with a reptile whose name I neglected to get. But it/he/she was friendly and deeply interested in what I had to say. 
Much of the conference was recorded on video by Laticia Gibson of Blue Clay Productions who also recorded interviews with many of the speakers. See Laticia’s video report on the conference here on the Blue Clay website.
The resulting production will have a number of applications and will no doubt also be used to sell next year’s event.
Tourism is a people business and the people from NSW whom I met at this conference  displayed the sort of passion we need to see a lot more of, especially by people who actually deliver services to visitors.
It’s also noteworthy that most NSW local authorities have tourism managers or dedicated tourism officers who not only work hand in hand with local operators but help keep tourism uppermost in the minds of elected members of councils.  
All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable conference.
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