Kingston’s cultural life is rich and varied but not always widely known and/or celebrated either within the city or in the broader tourism region. Its heritage assets tend to be better known than its cultural assets - the launch of the new “arts campus” located along the Kingston waterfront created a new opportunity for the City of Kingston to promote culture locally and to potential visitors.
This cultural tour was part of a greater Cultural Tourism Plan to promote the opening of the Tett Centre and The Isabel as significant new experiences in Kingston. The project was created to raise awareness for these venues as destinations to experience Kingston’s cultural offering and expose the creative and unique use of heritage assets to house and promote the arts.
In order to inform the greater strategy, an in-person focus group with a group of cultural enthusiasts were recruited based on social media activity and presence in the art scene of target cities; Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto. As part of my role I curated a group of unique personalities from all walks of artistic life which included; recording artists, festival organizers, creative directors, photographers and culture seekers. I planned and executed a familiarization tour for these individuals, hosting them for a weekend in Kingston that included a variety of cultural events, dining and adventures in the arts. At the end of the weekend a moderated group discussion/follow-up survey was held on their impressions of the experience - most memorable, surprising, etc.
The objective of this effort was to gather qualitative first-person impressions – not to generate social shares or impressions. That being said, the social sharing component was a valuable added benefit to this effort, but not a primary objective.