Maine relies heavily on a tourism economy. It is critical to acknowledge there's a complete industry of people working to draw those tourists in. That's what the higher Bangor Convention and Visitor's Bureau 2020 Tourism Awards aim to do.
The recipients announced Wednesday morning at the Hollywood Casino. You will see five honorees at the awards dinner in June. Included in this are Tim Cotton and the Duck of Justice from the Bangor Police Department, and Bangor Savings Bank.
Miles Theeman is the Lifetime Achievement award winner. The Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race gets the Organizational Award. And, the former head of the American Folk Festival, Heather McCarthy, will receive the Individual Award.
"I think there's lots of bittersweet about the actual fact that there will not be a folk festival this year," said McCarthy. "In order to celebrate with other persons in the tourism industry about the impact of the festival has had - that's a great cap to it."
"Regardless of what you do in this town, be it helping with an financial development project just like the Cross Center or being truly a part of the CVB, you were always among a bunch of men and women who are investing in the same timeframe and effort and energy you are," said Theeman. "To be designated is wonderful."
"This event has been going on for 54 years," said Deb Gendreau, a representative from the Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race. "It's never been canceled. What a best part to have in this community. Something to run every year. Something for folks to come back and appearance forward to every year. We have persons from all over. Right now we have people registered from California completely to Canada."
And, only a reminder - TV5 could have coverage of the Canoe Race on April 18th from 11 to 1 1.