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Published On: Thursday, 08 June 2017

A Black Zebra with White Stripes or a White Zebra with Black Stripes?

A Black Zebra with White Stripes or a White Zebra with Black Stripes?
Through the foresight and entrepreneurial ingenuity, a brave few mountain resorts are realizing new and expanded visions for themselves that are resulting in a healthier and more vibrant year round tourism industry. (Photo Credit: Big White Ski Resort)

- Glenn Mandziuk is President and Chief Executive Officer of Thompson Okanagan Tourism Region. He can be reached at ceo@totabc.com.

THOMPSON/OKANAGAN - Creating a strong and vibrant hospitality industry in any seasonal tourism destination is dependant on industry partners finding ways to diversify and adapt their products and services throughout the changing seasons. 

A tremendous example of this in action is evidenced in the work our ski resorts have done over the past several years in reinventing themselves outside of the winter months. 

As we now close the book on 2016/17 and what can only be described as an outstanding season for our regional ski resorts, with record breaking numbers of visitors and incredible snow conditions, their teams are already looking forward and planning for the upcoming spring and summer season.

A season which sees long white snowy runs give way to challenging downhill cycling courses and picturesque walks through vibrantly coloured trails courtesy of natural wildflowers.

Full days of on mountain recreation can often be followed by unique concerts and outdoor entertainment; the music literally vibrating off the mountain peaks. Festivals and special events bring world-class chefs and wine makers to the forefront, changing the often-quoted verbiage of "ski in and ski out" to "dine in and dine out".

There was a time when our resort mountains lay dormant through the summer season, the staff having to find alternate employment and the owners often struggling to maintain a healthy business venture on very minimal weeks of operation.

Today through the foresight and entrepreneurial ingenuity, a brave few mountain resorts are realizing new and expanded visions for themselves; that are resulting in a healthier and more vibrant year round tourism industry economy and enhanced visitor experiences.

Ski mountains with summer recreation or Summer mountains with winter skiing…?

Is the zebra white with black strips or black with white strips?