Why No Sports Tourism On The Chatham-Kent Website?

Screenshot of the Municipality of Chatham-Kent’s homepage

When someone wants to know something about just about any place in the world, ultimately, they pull out their phone, or sit down at their computer, and Google it.

This stands true for business, tourism, or general curiosity.

When you search out Chatham-Kent, perhaps you stop at Wikipedia, or read a local media outlet, but more than likely you end up on the Municipality of Chatham-Kent’s website.

Here is where the proverbial ball gets dropped?

Yes, the CK website had information about the Pinty’s Grand Slam this year, but sports tourism otherwise does not exist on the website. There is information on water sports, angling, curling, and golf, but in terms of how many people visit Chatham-Kent annually for sports, this is only a small portion of what we offer.

This community has hosted Provincial championships in multiple sports, has large annual baseball tournaments, had Hometown Hockey, Silverstick, NCAA basketball, college hockey, and much more… in the last year.

Each and every one of these events brings in significant gains for the organizations involved, and economically impacts our community.

Throw in locations like Dresden Raceway, and the Southern Ontario Motor Speedway, angling and water sports on Lake Erie and Mitchell’s Bay, not to mention our location between London, Windsor, and the United States, and we’re primed to be a major sports tourism location.

Ultimately an OHL franchise might be a cool idea, but potentially not feasible, especially with the state of our arenas.

So let’s promote the events, and facilities we do have to organizations, teams, and leagues looking to host an event.

The YMCA pool, St. Clair HealthPlex gym, Fergie Jenkins Field, the Chatham-Kent Community Athletic Complex, and many other spots in Chatham-Kent’s rural communities.

Not only should we be luring groups and events, but we should be developing them, and supporting more organizations to run events.

Where is it Chatham-Kent?

Time to task someone with an update to our website. As a relatively new resident, it’s something I see lacking.

Surely under the Tourism & Culture drop down we can have a Sports tab, or a Sports Tourism tab highlighting major events from the last several years, and the options we have as a community to continue hosting and building on our successes.

Let’s promote the wonderful sports opportunities, which can boost our economy, promote our community, and showcase our athletes.

This might simply be a complaint regarding the absence of this now popular term, but Chatham-Kent, it’s time to add the words “sports tourism” to our open for business sign.

It seems like too large of a market to just gloss over on our first line of information, when it should literally be a click away.

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