• 2014 09 29 Winnipeg Sign

    Why don’t more Grand Forks residents visit Winnipeg?

    Winnipeg needs to do more to attract American tourists to the city

    Mayoral candidate Gord Steeves said Winnipeg should be doing more to attract American tourists from North Dakota, particularly Grand Forks. In his first term as Mayor, Steeves will create “Grand Forks Weekend,” to encourage residents from the North Dakota city to travel to Winnipeg to enjoy what our great city has to offer.

    “We all know Winnipeggers head to Grand Forks to enjoy shopping trips in the United States,” Steeves said. “I want to ensure Grand Forks residents know they can get the same experience in Winnipeg.”

    This weekend could be a time when both the Winnipeg Jets and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers have home games. It could also feature a friendly hockey game between the University of North Dakota and the University of Manitoba Bisons.

    Steeves pledged the City of Winnipeg could contribute $50,000 towards a campaign, which includes Destination Winnipeg, the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, and the Manitoba Hotel Association. Other partners could include the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, Assiniboine Park, and stakeholders such as Manitoba’s sport governing bodies and arts groups.

    “The point of this exercise is not just to introduce more people to our city, but to even the north-south trade deficit which currently exists between Winnipeg and Grand Forks,” Steeves said. “If this works, or looks promising, we can try it again. This is not a very expensive plan, but I believe it will pay great dividends for our city.”

    Steeves added one of the reasons Winnipeggers travel to Grand Forks is to access cheaper air travel options for southern United States cities. Attracting a low-cost airline with similar destinations as Grand Forks offers would also help keep Winnipeg competitive.

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