The summer promises to be bright on Cape Ann – as evidenced by visitors out and about enjoying the warm and sunny weather these past several weeks, and by the recent work of the Tourism Council.
In this month’s Tourism Council meeting, the group reviewed the 2021 Spring Mixer held on May 6 and discussed plans and expectations for summer and beyond – and in both instances, there was plenty of optimism.
The Spring Mixer – the first major Chamber in-person event since pandemic restrictions were put in place last March – was a success by every measure. There were nearly 100 attendees from across all four Cape Ann communities, including State Senator Bruce Tarr, who was on hand to present a proclamation to the new owners of the Emerson Inn, the setting for the mixer. Adding to the celebratory spirit was a ribbon-cutting, a group photo on the inn’s veranda , an online broadcast, and lots of folks reconnecting and sharing updates. A big thank you to Emerson owners Kimberly Voltero and Bart Troch for hosting us.
The Tourism Council used the mixer to gathered feedback from attendees via a “quick poll.” The most encouraging takeaway from the survey of nearly 40 attendees were the responses about expectations for the summer season – 39 of those 40 respondents said they more optimistic this year than last year.
We also polled those attendees about ways the Council can better serve the tourism community, and their responses were even spread across areas like gathering data on our tourism economy; creating opportunities to share updates, recommendations and questions; developing/supporting tourism programs; and, the top answer, providing information on developments impacting tourism.
The quick poll responses reflect some of the goals of the Tourism Council, and as we move forward in 2021, you can expect to see updates on our work in these areas. We discussed some these plans in our May 21 meeting – reviewing work on a winter birding season program; sharing new safety protocols for summer 2021; brainstorming solutions for the industry-wide staffing shortage; providing updates on community events and activities; learning about the Chamber’s inclusion, diversity, equity, and accessibility (IDEA) efforts; and hearing the latest on state grants that will help support tourism.
If you would like to be part of future discussions – or if you have questions or comments on the Tourism Council or anything discussed here — please call or email me. Our next meeting is June 18, and we would love to have you join us.
Co-owner, Blue Shutters Beachside Inn
Chair, Tourism Council