Sport Events Congress attendance jumps by 250%

Ottawa, April 16, 2002 - Sport Events Congress 2002: Building Business through Sport wrapped up over the weekend at the Delta Hotel in Ottawa. The conference, a property of the Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance (CSTA), attracted a sold out gathering of 120 delegates, a 250 percent attendance increase over 2001.

Conference attendees and speakers included Paul DeVillers, Secretary of State (Amateur Sport), Jim Watson, President & CEO of the Canadian Tourism Commission, Lane MacAdam, Director General, Sport Canada and Jack Poole, Chairman and CEO, Vancouver 2010 Bid Corporation.

“We are extremely pleased with the remarkable progress the CSTA has made over the past 16 months in the development and implementation of leading edge industry and communications tools,” said Mr. Watson. “We look forward to building on our partnership with the CSTA as we continue to grow the sport tourism industry in communities across Canada.”

Highlighting this year’s Congress was a presentation on the Sport Tourism Economic Assessment Model (STEAM), a CSTA-led initiative involving Sport Canada, Skate Canada, the Canadian Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus and the Canadian Tourism Research Institute at The Conference Board of Canada. STEAM is a web-based application representing a standardized approach to economic impact assessment to assist sport and tourism partners and municipal, provincial and federal funding bodies to measure economic activity generated by sport events. The model, which took approximately 10 months to develop, will be accessible to CSTA members on a secure access basis in July 2002 following the release of updated Statistics Canada census data.

Immediately following the Congress, the CSTA elected a new Board of Directors at its Annual General Meeting. Elected to the Board were Kevin Carson (Saint John), Gary Curgin (London), Greg Edgelow (Vancouver) and Pat Shewchuk (Brantford). Todd Brandt (Saskatoon), Ross Cameron (Kingston), Lynda Généreux (Sherbrooke) and Tom Madden (Prince George) have one year remaining on their terms. Bob Graham (London) remains on the Board as Past President.

Andrée Steel, Vice President, Sales with the Ottawa Tourism and Convention Authority, was elected President by the Board. “We’re delighted with the success of the past weekend," said Ms. Steel. "Our organization’s greatest challenge over the next year will be to effectively manage growth. This is an exciting time for the sport tourism industry and the CSTA takes great pride in leading the charge.“