I, too, plan to comment on tourism in Delta. I just got back from a week of camping in Point Roberts.
Once you cross the border, it really does feel like you are on a Gulf Island.
As usual, our experience at Lighthouse Park was memorable. The staff is polite and efficient and the park itself is a wonderful place for the kids to fish for bullheads and enjoy the spectacular waterfront. And, you can burn wood in fire pits!
There are a number of funky galleries and restaurants and Lily Point Park is about as spectacular of a hike and picnic spot that you will ever find, especially at low tide.
The Marketplace is a destination in itself and has an enticing array of food and beverage items you just don't see in Canada. The place was packed every day we were there. Point Roberts has an accidental tourism strategy. It doesn't work overly hard at it but it brings in the bodies, gas pricing not withstanding.
I took a look at the tourism strategy report on the Corporation of Delta website. At 185 pages, it is certainly thorough enough but reads like a calculus textbook. Lots of terms, strategies, tables and goals, but not a whole lot of meat on the bone for me.
Maybe a simpler way of identifying opportunity would be to put your sales hat on and I think this is what Coun. Sylvia Bishop was trying to say a couple of weeks back.
If you were to set up a booth in a shopping mall in Victoria or Seattle to sell Delta, what would your brochures look like and what would your sales pitch be?
Out of the shoot I can see talking about Ladner, its riverfront heritage, its quaint streets and riverside restaurants. Westham Island is a real treat in the spring and summer and the Reifel Bird Sanctuary is a no-brainer tourism stop.
In North Delta, a drive up Scott Road or along Nordel Way does not say funky, it says something else. Burns Bog is in North Delta but it isn't really accessible, except for the Delta Nature Reserve. Watershed Park is a great place to walk your dog.
Tsawwassen is brimming with potential. Our climate, Boundary Bay Regional Park and Centennial Beach and its warm waters are truly impressive assets. A few years back we were finally granted our right in Canada to access the western shores of our peninsula.
Other than that, Tsawwassen is essentially a residential area, just like North Delta.
Our shopping core is barely adequate but not likely a destination goal for a Seattle tourist.
I am hoping that at long last, a community on the Southlands will be approved so access to Boundary Bay can be enjoyed more readily by other neighbourhoods in Tsawwassen. I am hoping that a vital market square would give our community a sense of identity that it could use to promote new ideas in tourism strategies revolving around urban agriculture and livework small-scale economies.
To me, this type of community in proximity to an outstanding waterfront environment would be a benefit to all who live here and for those who view Tsawwassen only as a place they drive through on the way to the ferry or to get gas.
Time to funkify.