Among the presenters during the CVEDS workshops are (clockwise, from upper left): Dana Wacker – digital strategist, Tourism Vancouver Island; Gaetane Palardy – owner, Island Gourmet Trails; Monica Frost – social media and community manager, BC Ale Trail, and; Ken Beattie – executive director, BC Craft Brewers Guild. Photos supplied

Comox Valley Economic Development offering numerous workshops and more during Small Business Month

October is Small Business Month and Comox Valley Economic Development and Tourism (CVEDS) is celebrating by hosting a series of ‘Lunch & Learn’ sessions, professional development workshops, and a tourism industry mini-conference.

Business owners, managers, and staff can take advantage of various educational, development, and networking opportunities, many of them free, to help them grow and thrive in the Comox Valley.

The start of the month kicks off with the Business Counts Lunch & Learn Workshop Series, sponsored by the Business Development Bank of Canada.

Topics including Starting a Small Business (Oct. 10), Things to Consider When Buying or Selling a Business (Oct. 17), Expanding Your Markets (Oct. 28), Food Safety Trends and Innovations (Oct. 29), E-Commerce (Oct. 31). Attendees will learn from leaders in a range of business fields to help enhance business objectives with new trends, tools and tips. These sessions are free and will be held at the Comox Valley Economic Development office in downtown Courtenay.

Additional professional development workshops are happening Oct. 21-23 during the Tourism & Professional Development Week with three free workshops including: “Superhost Destination Ambassador Comox Valley” is perfect for any frontline staff and is tailored specifically to the Comox Valley; the Food & Beverage Industry Workshop features speakers from BC Restaurant Foodservice Association as they discuss how to “Make Social Media Work for You”; and the sold-out “Grow with Google” Program, presented by Tourism Vancouver Island.

That week will culminate with the Tourism Industry Mini-Conference, Oct. 24, 4-7:30 p.m., Vancouver Island Visitor Centre. Operators, owners, frontline staff, volunteers and stakeholders will come together to learn, provide vital input into 2020 tourism and destination marketing plans, and network with sector leaders. Speakers from Tourism Vancouver Island, Mountain Bike Tourism Association, and BC Ale Trail will host informative mini-sessions.

There will also be information stations presented by Destination BC, Tourism Vancouver Island, Comox Valley Airport, Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce, Comox Valley Arts Council, Sid Williams Theatre, Courtenay Downtown BIA, Harbour Air Seaplanes, and North Island College Student Employment Services.

The Networking BBQ & Mixer will be catered by The Pickled Carrot with tasting stations from 40 Knots Vineyard & Estate Winery, Wayward Distillery, New Traditions Brewing Company, Ace Brewing Company, and more.

For more information, dates and ticket registration, visit BusinessComoxValley.com or call the Vancouver Island Visitor Centre 1-855-400-2882.

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