By anguillian May 22, 2017 10:13




“The 50th Anniversary of the Anguilla Revolution gives us a great opportunity to tap into the tourism industry,” says Mr. Cardigan Connor, Parliamentary Secretary, Tourism. “One of our plans is to put into operation a welcome back to the island initiative in association with our hotels, villas and inns. It is a case of having the properties invite their guests to come back to the island and share with us in our 50th Anniversary.”

Mr. Connor continued: “For 50 dollars, anybody who stays at any of the properties would go into a raffle and the winner will get four nights’ stay of a five-day trip to Anguilla. The Tourist Board will be responsible for the airfare and the ground-handling. The properties have been very supportive in offering that as a prize. A number of the hotels, as well, have come up with their own initiatives – whether a spa treatment or whatever. I think a number of people are looking to take advantage of that.”
The Parliamentary Secretary further stated: “With boat-racing being our national sport, this is an ideal way for us to have that funding to provide the first prize of 50,000 EC dollars to the winner of the 50th Anniversary boat race. We will have eight press writers who will be here in Anguilla for that day. They will be on one of the boats we will be chartering to take them around the island to write about it, and to promote Anguilla as a destination.
“We are obviously very proud of having achieved 50 years of secession from St. Kitts – and as a people coming together for the national sport. We call it our national sport but I think it is more than a sport. It is our culture that plays such a major part in the life of our island. Boat-racing has always been a part of us so it is a great opportunity for us to promote that.”

Mr. Connor stressed that the 50,000 dollars will be coming from the hotels and their guests who visited Anguilla over the years, and therefore has nothing to do with the 73,000 dollars the Anguilla Government normally provides each year for the Anguilla Day boat-racing of which 10,000 dollars goes to the winning boat. This year, the 73,000 dollars will be used for the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th prizes as well as the consolation prizes for the other participating boats.
“The 50,000 dollars is an idea I came up with,” he stated. “In fact, about five years ago, when I talked about running for office, I said that if I were to win we should come up with a prize of 50,000 dollars for the winner of the 50th Anniversary boat race. I am not patting myself on the back, but it was my idea. The Tourist Board is very much in support of it but, more importantly, the hotels, villas, inns and all the managers see it as a great opportunity for public relations within tourism. A portion of the funds we are looking for will go to boat-racing; a youth sports scholarship and a playing field at West End – the only district in Anguilla that does not have a playing field.”

Mr. Connor praised the response of the various tourism properties as being very positive. “You will find that within the industry everybody is always looking for another lead that they haven’t used before, and so the 50th Anniversary of the Anguilla Revolution is a big tourism sale for them. I also think that involvement in the celebration should also start with all Anguillians as well. They, too, have to buy into it. The truth is that, for those persons, like me, who were around in 1967, we have come a long way. Yes, we could have been further down the road, but we could have been further back as well. As you look around the world, you see that there are issues facing many nations. For us, we have a gift here but we don’t appreciate it. The 50th Anniversary of our Revolution gives us a great opportunity to celebrate what we have, not what we don’t have.”
The Parliamentary Secretary added: “The 50th Anniversary is selling big because a number of the hotels and the other properties see it as an opportunity to sell their different initiatives – whether a five-night stay, and you get two free as well as a number of other packages. As I said, it is something they are taking advantage of – and quite rightly so.”

By anguillian May 22, 2017 10:13


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