The Central Highlands’ bourgeoning tourism and events industry is set to look at how to work collectively to achieve its full potential.

The Tourism and Events Strategy Forum will be delivered by the Central Highlands Development Corporation (CHDC) in Emerald on Wednesday, 27 March.

Tickets are $45 per person and can be purchased at chdc.com.au.

The full-day event will include guest speakers from Tourism and Events Queensland; Queensland Tourism Industry Council; and regional tourism organisations Capricorn Enterprise and Outback Queensland Tourism; as well as experienced business operators.

“The forum’s designed to be an informative and inspiring day for all businesses involved in attracting, entertaining or servicing visitors to the Central Highlands,” CHDC General Manager Sandra Hobbs says.

“It’s about sharing expertise, generating discussion, forging networks, and motivating operators to leverage off the opportunities of the ever-changing tourism and events market.

“Working from the same page and taking a collaborative approach are key to developing this local industry to its full potential.”

A focus will be to link local event organisers with tourism operators.

“There are many events in the Central Highlands throughout the year – from monthly community markets to the annual Gemfest – and it would be great if we could sway more tourists to attend these,” Ms Hobbs says.

“It would increase the success of the events and at the same time enhance the visitor experience.”

The day’s keynote address will be delivered by Associate Professor Judith Mair, a respected tourism academic from the University of Queensland.

There will also be one-on-one micro meetings and mentoring sessions, and a Q&A panel session, which will include successful tourism operators from the Central Highlands and Outback.

Tours will be held the following day to highlight leveraging opportunities and share our region’s best local tourism product with key industry people.

There will be the choice of three tours – Blackdown Tablelands, Sapphire Gemfields or Springsure Minerva Hills.

With the 2019 tourism season just weeks away, the forum will also be the launching pad for the 2019/20 Central Highlands Visitor Guide and Touring Map, and a new social media campaign.

Find more information about the Forum and Tour, including guest speakers, at chdc.com.au.

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