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Regenerative Tourism Approach Calls to Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands

Island County’s tourism board unveils new brand, strategic direction and invitation to join in building a more flourishing and regenerative future Whidbey and Camano Islands   Formerly known as Whidbey and Camano Islands Tourism, a new name and brand Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands reflects a shift to reimagine tourism; this shift to embrace the […]

Island County’s tourism board unveils new brand, strategic direction and invitation to join in building a more flourishing and regenerative future

Whidbey and Camano Islands

Formerly known as Whidbey and Camano Islands Tourism, a new name and brand Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands reflects a shift to reimagine tourism; this shift to embrace the destination is an organizational mission to bridge this gap and create a holistic strategy that positions Whidbey and Camano Islands as a thriving place and community for many years to come.

 Photo courtesy Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands

Formerly known as Whidbey and Camano Islands Tourism, a new name and brand Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands reflects a shift to reimagine tourism; this shift to embrace the destination is an organizational mission to bridge this gap and create a holistic strategy that positions Whidbey and Camano Islands as a thriving place and community for many years to come.

ISLAND COUNTY, Wash. , May 09, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — This spring, Island County’s tourism board unveils a new strategic direction that invites the community to join in building a regenerative tourism approach. Formerly known as Whidbey and Camano Islands Tourism, a new name and brand Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands reflects a shift to reimagine tourism.

Guided by the experts at the Transformational Travel Council across an 18-month period, this new framework was created to preserve and improve the islands for residents. It is an invitation to co-create richer experiences for visitors and to harness tourism’s power as a force for good.

“Regenerative travel takes place when visitors travel with a mindset to leave a destination better than it was before they arrived, and experiences go beyond a traditional vacation,” said Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands Board President Jackie Henderson. “Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands is an invitation to build a flourishing future for the destination, and to connect with the community in crafting the visitor experience.”

The people of Whidbey and Camano Islands have been successful at preserving a sense of place by offering a slower pace and close-knit communities with a variety of activities and experiences that embrace the island lifestyle. These elements are attractive for residents and visitors alike, yet a host of challenges such as a lack of affordable housing, delicate environmental considerations, socio-economic imbalances, and several other factors, are realities. This shift to embrace the destination is an organizational mission to bridge this gap and create a holistic strategy that positions Whidbey and Camano Islands as a thriving place and community for many years to come.

“This shift in thinking from ‘how to we bring people here,’ to ‘who are we and how do we connect with people coming here’ is at the heart of regenerative tourism,” notes Mona Campbell, owner of Canopy Tours Northwest at Kristoferson Farm and member of the Destination Regeneration Steering Committee. “This change in perspective encourages reflection on what it is to be in this beautiful place, what we care about, and how we express that to the people that come here so they can share the interest in nature, art, history, and culture that we value so much.”

Guided by a sense of place and the sensitivity of the natural environment, Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands will continue its destination management work under the pillars of:

  • Healthy Nature: community members nurture, respect, and value the marine and land ecosystems, we invite visitors to do the same.
  • Access: cultivate a rich quality of life for all inhabitants, through equitable access to all resources within Island County.
  • Bridge Building: unify all community members around a shared vision and goals, fostering collaboration through efficient communication systems.
  • Transformational Mindset: create positive change in the distinct communities of our islands through mindful engagement, authentic participation and active learning.

More detail on the plans and direction is available in the strategic plan “Embrace,” available to download at this link. It was developed by the Destination Regeneration Steering Committee comprised of Island County residents and small business owners in partnership with the Transformational Travel Council and creative team at Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands.

About Whidbey and Camano Islands
Just north of Seattle in the heart of the scenic Salish Sea, sit two of the most charming island destinations in the Pacific Northwest. Camano and Whidbey offer different experiences with each season. A colorful palate of locally owned shops and restaurants provide deep and delicious connections to the community and the land. Off the beaten path trails and beaches share sanctuary, solitude and a deeper connection with the incredible marine and forest ecosystems that thrive within these communities. Rich history and a healthy dose of local color in all mediums is provided by the region’s many artists. Lodging options range from nationally renowned hotels with farm-to-table dining to secret spots ideal for a quiet retreat. For more information on amenities, lodging and a calendar of events visit www.whidbeycamanoislands.com. Connect on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook via @GoWhidbeyCamano.

Media Contact: ON Public Relations for Embrace Whidbey and Camano Islands
Erin Osborne, erin@onpublicrelations.com, 206-948-6059

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/65de415c-2beb-44dc-83be-05c3ec6139f7

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