WORDS | Anita Kane, Visit Mandurah

It’s great to be writing this article as the acting General Manager for Visit Mandurah (formerly MAPTO).

Yes, we’ve had a name change to better reflect the main purpose of our organisation. However, the experiences available in the wider Peel continue to play a big part in the Visit Mandurah philosophy and we’ll still be promoting all the fantastic things to see and do right across the region.

When thinking about tourism marketing, advertisements, beautiful pictures on Instagram and even billboards are some of the obvious things that spring to mind. Something that isn’t quite so obvious, yet equally important, is events.

Part of our role here at Visit Mandurah is to work with event holders and local shires to attract events to our region to help build a strong, thriving tourism industry. Events give people a timedriven reason to visit; that is, they have to come when the event is on instead of just having us on their ‘maybe one day I’ll get there’ list. Events scheduled in off-peak season can also help keep visitor numbers steady all year round, helping sustain the many businesses that rely on the tourist trade.

Participation events, such as the Grapest 5k Run at Drakesbrook, the APES Games in Mandurah and Adventurethon in Dwellingup, attract huge numbers of competitors, support crew and family and friends.

Adventurethon — one of Australia’s leading multi-sport off-road challenges — was held in Dwellingup over two days in May and attracted more than 340 competitors and spectators.

Adventurethon has been running events since 2010, however, it was the first time the event had been held in the Peel region with events in Kalbarri each year and Albany previously.

The race included three stages — paddle, trail run and mountain bike course and, as an added bonus for long-course competitors, a high ropes obstacle course at Trees Adventure, Lane Poole Park. It was the first time this fun and unique element has been offered as part of an Adventurethon race.

The Adventurethon Dwellingup is another fantastic example of how a good collaboration across the local shire, Visit Mandurah and Peel Development Commission and the local business community can make an economic impact and generate positive destination publicity.

Further, unique regional events including City of Mandurah’s Wearable Arts Mandurah and Crab Fest generate a strong community sense of pride and engagement.

From a tourism perspective these events showcase the best of the region and are important in raising the profile of our destination through the media coverage they generate.

The benefits of attracting visitors through events don’t end when everyone goes home. Hopefully they’ve had a fantastic time, seen some beautiful and unique things and fallen a little in love with us. That means they’re likely to come back and tell people they know about us too.

MORE INFORMATION

For further information visit: www.visitmandurah.com

This article was first published in the Peel Magazine, Spring/Summer – vol 5.2 – to read and download the full magazine, click here.