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Indigenous Tourism is thriving in Manitoba

Indigenous Tourism Manitoba’s PROVINCIAL AWARDS

New Operator or Business that Launched a New Experience Award

Although COVID-19 brought many challenges; ITAC recognizes that new operators and new businesses may still be developing their experiences. This award recognizes a phoenix rising through the ashes during one of the most difficult times in recent history. This honour is awarded to a new business or experience that opened between 2020 and 2022.

Winner: Prairie Berry, Jen Turenne

Prairie Berry first opened its gates in 2015 as a strawberry farm in rural Manitoba. It’s unique identity as an Indigenous-owned and fully bilingual business makes it one of a kind in the landscape of berry farms. In 2020, owner Jen Turenne began developing a farm to table dining experience. Throughout the process, she prioritized bringing Indigenous traditions to the forefront of these events, including the addition of bison and bannock to the menu along with offering hoop dancing and drumming. 


Cultural Experience Award

The Exceptional Cultural Experience Award recognizes the outstanding delivery of cultural knowledge and guest experiences at Indigenous Cultural Centres, Museums, Galleries, Retail Stores, Food Establishments, Entertainments Centres and Spa/Retreats, Outdoor Adventure, Wildlife Viewing, Outdoor Guided Tours in Manitoba.

Winner: Whiteshell Petroforms 

On an outcropping of the ancient Precambrian shield sit carefully arranged rocks. Painted by decades of lichen and trimmed with moss, the figures hold the unmistakable shapes of turtles and birds, serpents and humans. These are the petroforms of Whiteshell Provincial Park. The Whiteshell Petroform tours guide visitors on guided walks of the sacred site, sharing stories of the teachings and healings that continue to this day through ceremony and song. 


Outstanding Staff Person Award

This Outstanding Staff Person Award recognizes a youth ambassador or Elder for their extraordinary dedication and exceptional performance while bringing passion for their culture and history and commitment to achieving excellence for the business in Manitoba

Winner: Dennis Daniels – Manitoba Indigenous Cultural Education Centre

Dennis Daniels from Peguis First Nation is an Executive Director at Manitoba Indigenous Cultural Education Centre. He was hired at the centre 45 years ago as a Curriculum Development Officer and has watched the centre develop and flourish over his time with the organization.


The Leading the Way in Business Development Award

The Business Development Award recognizes a community-based business thriving in tourism business development at an inspiring rate. This business demonstrates the implementation of proper protocol, from community consultation to community buy-in.

Winner: Opaskwayak Cree Nation

Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN) is taking bold steps to become the premier cultural destination for Indigenous tourism in Manitoba. More than a dozen new experiences and outfitters in the region saw significant development during the pandemic and most will be ready to launch in the near future, adding to an already robust line-up of tourism offerings in the area. 

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