Cutbacks to Parks Canada will hurt Saskatchewan

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Cutbacks to Parks Canada contained in the Harper Government’s omnibus bill C-38 will hurt Saskatchewan’s tourism industry.  

This summer, the Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Group sponsored a vintage motorcycle tour of sites of the 1885 Northwest Resistance. Participants in Geezers on Wheezers Five came from as far away as Quebec and Nunavut.

At the Battlefords, knowledgeable staff showed us the top notch Western Development Museum, and young guys in Northwest Mounted Police gear gave a spectacular canon demonstration at Fort Battleford. A walking tour at Batoche was brought alive by a fellow whose great uncle fought alongside Metis General, Gabriel Dumont.

But we heard tours and programs such as we enjoyed, would likely be cut.

Since 2000, our semi-annual motorcycle tour has injected considerable cash into local economies. And that’s just a drop in a big tourism bucket.

So even if the implication of a shriveling Canadian culture doesn’t fire you up, if it’s money we we’re talking, adequate federal funding for our national parks and historic sites is not a cost. It’s an investment that pays with a multitude of economic spin-offs.

Now we hear winter trails in Prince Albert National Park cannot be groomed. You might want to try helping your local MP connect the dots that join tourism investment, the quality of vacationer experience, and benefits to the grassroots economy.

Doug Bone - Elrose

Organizations: Parks Canada, Western Development Museum

Geographic location: Saskatchewan, Prince Albert National Park

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