Town releases 2021 destination guide

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The Town of Stony Plain is encouraging visitors and residents to get out and explore the community.

Last month, the Town’s Culture and Tourism Development department released the 2021 Stony Plain Destination Guide. Each year, its purpose is to highlight Stony Plain’s variety of events, family-friendly amenities, and general information.

For the past five years, the Town has been publishing the Destination Guide in a booklet format each spring. Prior to that, it would release an annual tri-fold brochure that simply provided a list of upcoming Stony Plain events. The Town made the transition from brochure to booklet format when it realized it was often in need of more space for all the content it wanted to provide.

“We found that the events guide that we used to do just wasn’t big enough to capture all of the things that we wanted to promote. We decided to expand on it to be able to include more information both on behalf of the municipality but also community-based events, organizations, and tourism spots,” said Culture and Tourism Development Officer Chantelle Laberge.

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Typically, the booklets range from 32–35 pages in length. This year’s, however, is only 18 pages due to the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on in-person events. The 2021 Destination Guide covers places to visit, murals and public art, celebrations, summer sessions, shopping and accommodation, recreation, and winter activities. The printed version can be acquired at the Town Office, the Visitor Information Centre, or the Greater Parkland Regional Chamber of Commerce.

In 2020, the Town scratched the Destination Guide altogether due to the pandemic. The current booklet was designed around ongoing health restrictions and includes a disclaimer stating that “events may be changed or rescheduled due to COVID-19.” Laberge said another notable change to this year’s guide would be the exclusion of all non-municipal events. This is due to the fact that the Town does not want to promote anything that it has no direct control over.

One of the highlights of the 2021 Destination Guide is the return of “Summer Sessions.” Each year, the Town is host to a talented lineup of Canadian artists who perform weekly concerts from Shikaoi Park over the course of the summer. Performances this year will be held every Wednesday at 7:00 PM between Jun. 16 and Aug. 4. Artists respectively include Martin Kerr, Blake Reid, Scenic Route to Alaska, FKB, The Prairie States, Rooks, Jamie Warren, and Bobby Wills. Laberge said the Town currently doesn’t know whether Summer Sessions will be presented in-person or virtually.

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While this year’s Destination Guide will not be mailed out, residents will receive a postcard in the mail the week of Apr. 26. Community members who bring their postcards with them to pick up a booklet will be entered into a grand prize draw for a gift basket. Each household is eligible for one entry and the draw will remain open until May 28 at 4:30 PM.

“Visitors and residents don’t always know what’s going on or have access to an aggregating place to find information. This is handheld information all in one place and the guide is an integral piece to our marketing plan for tourism in general. We really encourage locals to pick up a guide so that they are able to share our community with their friends and relatives when they come to visit,” said Laberge.

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