Around Vancouver, several Indian bands are rewriting the book on Aboriginal tourism in the lead-up to the Olympic Games, moving away from tepee villages and kitschy gift shops and embracing more authentic and sophisticated experiences. I checked out a few of the new Aboriginal offerings in an article for The Washington Post:
As hosts of the Vancouver Olympics, First Nations are ready to welcome the world
By Remy Scalza; Special to The Washington Post
It’s an Olympic first that has drawn few headlines. When the 2010 Winter Games open in Vancouver, B.C., in February, four Canadian Indian nations will be on hand — not as window dressing but as full-fledged hosts. “This isn’t just get out the drums and feathers for the Opening Ceremonies,” says Alex Rose, communications director for the Four Host First Nations, the society representing the four groups of Canada’s indigenous people who will host the Games. “Those days are gone.”
Largely gone, too, are the tepees, totem poles and tchotchkes that once defined aboriginal tourism in Canada. In their place has sprung up a new generation of indigenous travel experiences — from urban powwows to luxe native-owned wineries — aimed at courting the more than 250,000 visitors expected at the Games.
Click here for the full article on The Washington Post site.