The best way for Tofino to ensure visitors are receiving information about its services at the Pacific Rim Visitors centre is by encouraging its local businesses to become members, according to Ucluelet Coun. Dario Corlazzoli.
Corlazzoli represents the chamber to the council. At last week’s council meeting, he recounted a recent meeting he attended between representatives from Tofino and Ucluelet regarding the PRVC, which is currently operated through a partnership between Ucluelet and Parks Canada.
He said it was the second meeting the two towns have had to discuss Tofino’s desire to become more involved at the centre and to see more regional information being shared.
“We made it very clear and specific that the best way for them to participate is to become members,” he said “If their members increase at the information centre then it allows us to give that information…If they’re not involved that way it’s difficult for the (Ucluelet) chamber to give the information that I think they’re looking for; right now it’s very generic and it’s broad.” He said Tofino businesses receive strong value in a PRVC membership.
“It’s a great value so I think they need to go back and figure out how they can make it more clear to their members that it’s a good deal and a valuable tool for them.”
District officials from both towns as well as Tourism Tofino, Tourism Ucluelet and both district’s chambers of commerce attended the meeting.
“We opened up some good dialogue and they were quite receptive to the idea of having an ad hoc group get together and discuss what regional information they’d like to see,” Corlazzoli said. “That’s always useful just to make sure we’re capturing all the information that we should be putting out there and I think we’re doing a pretty good job.”
Corlazzoli said the Ucluelet chamber’s executive director Sue Payne has been invited to give a presentation about the centre’s activities and to “drum up some more memberships” at an upcoming Tofino luncheon.
Corlazzoli gave high accolades to Ucluelet’s first annual business fair.
The fair took place last Friday and Saturday at the Ucluelet community centre and Corlazzoli said Friday was very popular because a variety of food growers provided a strong draw and received a lot of local interest.
“The feedback was very positive,” he said.
He said Saturday’s crowd was sparse but suggested next year’s event may see more success through increased participation from local businesses.
“I don’t think a lot of them understood what it would look like so I think next year it will be a stronger showing,” he said. “It’s a great thing that (the Ucluelet Chamber of Commerce) did for the community and it opened eyes for what’s available.”