Media Release

Inaugural Tourism Awards Winnipeg | Manitoba Celebrates Industry Excellence

Inaugural Tourism Awards Winnipeg | Manitoba Celebrates Industry Excellence

Together, Travel Manitoba and Tourism Winnipeg honoured the industry and its hard work as visitor spending rebounds and visitation numbers begin to climb.

October 19, 2023

WINNIPEG - TREATY 1 – Manitoba’s 25th Premier and NDP leader Wab Kinew was on hand to recognize the hard work and perseverance of tourism industry professionals today at the first Tourism Awards Winnipeg | Manitoba, held October 19 at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. Nearly 100 nominations poured in to recognize the dedication and excellence of tourism operators, businesses, employees, volunteers and campaigns from 2022 culminating in 18 awards in nine categories.

“Manitoba welcomes millions of visitors and their families to our great province each year. The tourism and hospitality sectors have worked tirelessly to show visitors everything Manitoba has to offer. They have built a strong industry which has created economic benefits for communities across our province. Congratulations to the finalists and winners for your efforts and your continued success,” said Premier Kinew.

As destination marketing organizations, Travel Manitoba and Tourism Winnipeg, a division of Economic Development Winnipeg, regularly work together and with industry members to advance tourism across the province. This year, the two agencies joined forces to collectively recognize a Winnipeg and Manitoba winner in each of the award categories. 

In addition, a special award of distinction was presented to Elder Barbara Nepinak, and posthumously to her late husband Clarence Nepinak, for their outstanding contributions to cultural institutions and the community at large. 

Manitoba’s new Minister of Sport, Culture, Heritage and Tourism, the Honourable Glen Simard and His Worship Mayor Scott Gillingham, joined Colin Ferguson, President & CEO of Travel Manitoba and Ryan Kuffner, President & CEO of Economic Development Winnipeg, in welcoming more than 375 attendees to today’s lively event.  

“We have so many great attractions in our city, but it’s the tourism professionals who help bring these spaces to life and send visitors home with incredible memories of Winnipeg,” said Mayor Gillingham. “Theirs are often the first smiles that visitors see upon arrival, and they serve as storytellers and guides, unveiling hidden gems through a trusted local’s perspective. On behalf of my City Council colleagues, we thank them for their hospitality, resilience and dedication to this industry.”

“The incredible work of our award finalists and all the hard-earned success they’ve achieved is truly remarkable. I am so honoured to be a part of such a robust tourism industry and to support the excellent work of the tourism operators and experts that drive the $1.8 billion tourism economy in this province as of 2022, our best year ever,” said Colin Ferguson, President & CEO, Travel Manitoba. “Congratulations to all nominees and winners.” 

“What a privilege to be in the company of such a dedicated group of people who are so clearly passionate about everything our city and province have to offer,” said Kuffner. “Manitoba is such a special place, and the millions of travellers and conference delegates we welcome each year share that message with our teams all the time. This year’s awards are a testament to the industry’s commitment to showcasing Winnipeg and Manitoba – and the incredible experiences we provide. On behalf of EDW’s Tourism Winnipeg team, congratulations to today’s winners and all award nominees.”

Congratulations to all our 2022 Award Winners:

Business of the Year  Winnipeg

Royal Aviation Museum of Western Canada

Business of the Year  Manitoba

A Maze in Corn

Business of the Year – Small – Winnipeg

Fête Jockey Events

Business of the Year – Small – Manitoba

Voyageur Houseboats

Marketing Campaign of the Year – Winnipeg

The Leaf Manitoba

Marketing Campaign of the Year – Manitoba

Winnipeg Folk Festival

Business Excellence in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion – Winnipeg

Winnipeg Art Gallery-Qaumajuq

Business Excellence in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion – Manitoba

Falcon Trails Resort & Falcon Ridge Ski Slopes

Indigenous Tourism – Winnipeg

Wyndham Garden Winnipeg Airport

Indigenous Tourism – Manitoba

National Indigenous Residential School Museum of Canada

Sustainable Tourism – Winnipeg

The Forks North Portage Partnership

Sustainable Tourism – Manitoba

Wild Loon Adventure Company

Event of the Year – Winnipeg

Boo at the Zoo

Event of the Year – Manitoba

Holiday Alley

Employee of the Year – Winnipeg

Camila Quintanilla, Inn at the Forks

Employee of the Year – Manitoba

Kaelyn Delaurier, Daly House Museum

Volunteer of the Year – Winnipeg

Lorraine Thomas, TD Winnipeg International Jazz Festival

Volunteer of the Year – Manitoba

Jenna Boholij, Icelandic Festival of Manitoba

Award of Distinction

Barbara and Clarence Nepinak


Tourism Winnipeg is the city’s official destination marketing organization. A division of Economic Development Winnipeg Inc., Tourism Winnipeg’s mission is to facilitate a healthy, prosperous, responsible and fully integrated tourism industry that enhances the city of Winnipeg’s economic growth through the acquisition of meetings, conventions, events, group travel and leisure tourism, while increasing overnight visitation and delivering the best possible visitor experience.

Travel Manitoba is a Crown Corporation under provincial legislation that leads and stimulates sustainable tourism growth in Manitoba’s $1.8 billion tourism industry. In partnership with the tourism industry, the agency is responsible for tourism marketing, visitor information services, research and public information. 

Photos for media use are available here

Finalist Write-Ups (French and English) are available here.

Winner Videos are available here.

(Photos and videos by Maddy Reico)

For more information, please contact:

Karen Viveiros

Director, Communications 


P 204.390.5498


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