Thursday, October 15, 2009

Boosting Opportunities for Sport Tourism

Networking is an important tool to be used in any profession to enhance the chances of greater linkages. That too is true of the sport industry. So while Jamaica has the athletes, venues and the officials to coordinate major sporting events; it is also important to attend major shows across the world to network for greater opportunities.
One such opportunity will be happening in New Orleans this week (October 13 to 17) where the world’s largest gathering of sport event organisers will be. The Teams 2009 Conference and Expo is an event which attracts 38 top sponsorship organisations – hotel chains, convention centres, and key suppliers to the sport industry.
The world has continued to marvel at the economic value of an organised sport industry and a conference of this nature presents a great opportunity for developing countries like Jamaica to be with the movers and shakers in this industry.
The format of the five day event will include a conference programme with leading experts who share the latest inside information. There is a massive trade show with more than 300 sports-event suppliers and destinations that provides new contacts and ideas. There are also personal appointment sessions that allows quality time with event organizers and industry leaders and finally the networking sessions and social functions that help build valuable relationships for today and tomorrow.
Brand Warriors, of the Technology Innovation Centre, University of Technology will be in attendance for Jamaica and will bring back valuable experience to the country which should be managed for effectiveness.
There are a number of conferences to come on stream in 2010 and Jamaica as Sport Tourism destination; also as a place where there are facilities for further training in Sport and Physical Education should capitalise on some of these opportunities as the country aims to earn from the billion dollar industry.
There is the 2010 Sports Industry Networking and Career Conference scheduled for March in Washington. In Vienna in July, there is a Sport Engineering Association Conference where the focus is on technology and innovation for sport and science. There are a number of opportunities and if Jamaica wants to be successful in other aspects of the industry, it has to reach out of the box, if even for networking opportunities initially.

Major Events
In the tourist capital, Montego Bay on October 31, the second running of the WATA Rose Hall Triathlon will be on, which will feature some of the world’s top triathletes. The event, only in its second year, has managed to attract Olympic quality athletes among a list of other keen competitors. An added attraction is the triathlon for children, scheduled for November 1 on the same course. For more go to
Later this year the Reggae Marathon is scheduled for Saturday, December 5 in Negril, then later that evening, a 9.58 SuperParty is on for the Richmond Estate, St. Ann to be hosted by Usain Bolt.
The plan for the restructuring of the Trelawny Sport Complex is welcome as the location is ideal for hosting major sporting and entertainment events.

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