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Nova Scotia Tourism Agency chairman is now a tourist

Promises to visit.

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Let’s be honest, we’d all move to Ontario if we could. It’s just strange to see the board chair for the province’s newly-created Tourism Agency moving with his family back to Upper Canada.

As reports Jean Laroche at the CBC, Cabot Links owner Ben Cowan-Dewar plans to attend meetings “every month or two.” Board chairs, he says, don’t oversee day-to-day operations anyhow.

Cowan-Dewar tells the Herald’s Michael Gorman that he and his family are moving to Toronto this fall to be closer to other family members, while still residing part of the year in Inverness.

The optics are bad, of course. But crazy as this sounds, what if it works out in our favour? Instead of booking dozens of interest-building trips and billing the province, Cowan-Dewar can just tell all his rich Ontario drinking buddies to come down for a weekend. Maybe that's the key to our tourism future—undercover ex-pats dragging dollars towards our shores one middle-age bachelor party at a time. After all, it's the sort of informal approach that originally got Cowan-Dewar interested in his Inverness lands.

Golf Tripper: Exactly how did you originally find the site for Cabot Links and what were the early steps you took to get started on the project?

BCD: I heard about the land while having dinner with the Minister of Tourism, who later went on to become the Premier, for the province of Nova Scotia in 2004.

It's all who you know. Besides, it’s not like Cowan-Dewar is in charge of operations for the province’s biggest municipality or anything.

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