Public symposium: Rural tourism, place, and identity
Rural tourism will be the subject of a public symposium on May 24 from 7–9 pm in the Alex H. MacKinnon Auditorium, room 242 of UPEI’s Don and Marion McDougall Hall. All are welcome.
“Tourism, Place and Identity: Rural Tourism in Iceland and Prince Edward Island” will feature Ms. Gudrun Gunnarsdottir of the Tourism Research Centre in Akureyri, Iceland. She will be joined by a panel of tourism authorities and practitioners.
Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in the number of tourists visiting Iceland. Tourism density in this island nation now rivals that of Prince Edward Island. The nature of the tourism industry is broadly similar in both islands—generally seasonal, with a heavy stress on cultural and environmental resources. Also, in both islands there has been a concerted effort by policy-makers to utilize tourism as a community-development tool for rural areas. This has met with mixed success and has raised a whole new set of issues. There is benefit for both islands to share experiences, insights, and possible solutions.
Gudrun Gunnarsdottir, presently director of the Icelandic Research Centre at the University of Akureyri in northern Iceland, is a graduate of the MBA in Tourism Management program at the University of Guelph. She is a specialist in rural tourism. From 2011 to 2014, she worked on a study, “The Entangled Web: Tourism, Place and Identity,” exploring how three small Icelandic communities have embraced the ever-increasing role of tourism.
The symposium is sponsored by the Institute of Island Studies, UPEI’s Vice-President Research and Academic, and the Rural Policy Learning Commons.
Vinland Society AGM and presentation
The 2017 AGM of the Vinland Society will be held at the Irish Cultural Centre, Charlottetown, on May 25, from 6–7 pm. The meeting will be followed, at 7:30 pm, by a talk presented by visiting Icelandic scholar Gudrun Gunnarsdottir, Director of the Icelandic Tourism Research Centre at the University of Akureyri. The topic of the lecture will be, “Travelling the Literary Landscape of Iceland.” Icelandic cultural heritage is centered around the Icelandic sagas, a medieval literature that is thoroughly woven into Iceland’s rural landscape. Most of the sagas are situated on existing farmsteads and in places that have become well-known destinations for saga enthusiasts, who travel to Iceland to explore and experience first-hand the environment that fostered Njall, Gudrun, Egill, Grettir and other saga heroes or heroines. Today, literary tourism has a growing importance in Iceland – and contemporary literature is also a source for product development around the country. This is further emphasized by Reykjavik’s status as a UNESCO-designated “City of Literature.” In this talk, various examples of literature tourism will be explored and put into context with tourism development in Iceland in general. The public is welcome to attend both the Vinland Society AGM and the Icelandic literary-tourism lecture.
All Around the Hillsborough speaker series
The Hillsborough River Association with support from the Canadian Heritage Rivers' Canada 150 Fund will host a variety of events and activities during 2017 with the over-riding theme of "All Around the Hillsborough." The events will acknowledge and celebrate the history, built heritage, culture, recreational value and natural history of the Hillsborough River. In addition to 2017 being Canada's 150th Anniversary, this year marks the 20th Anniversary of the designation of the Hillsborough as the Island's first Canadian Heritage River.
The All Around the Hillsborough Speaker Series runs from March 27 to May 29. Participating speakers will highlight some of the history and the animals on the Hillsborough. A Q&A with the author will follow each talk. Light refreshments and snacks will be available. Free admission.
Georges Arsenault, an Acadian historian, folklorist and author, will present Acadians on the Hillsborough on May 29 at Stratford Town Hall's Southport Room at 7:30 pm. Georges will discuss where and how the Acadians lived along the various courses of the Hillsborough.