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2016 Explore Canada Awards of Excellence: Finalists Announced

The Explore Canada Awards of Excellence recognize contributions to storytelling that inspire travellers to explore Canada. Earlier this year, this celebration of stellar content invited Canadian and international entrants – from bloggers and journalists to photographers and videographers – to submit their inspired travel tales in five content categories. Furthermore, members of the Canadian tourism industry were invited to submit their work for consideration in two additional categories.

After reviewing over 200 high-quality entries from eight countries, three entries have been selected as finalists in each category. Here is the list of those finalists and the judges who will adjudicate entries in each category.

World-class Attractions, Festivals and Events:

  • Ian Livingston, JohnnyJet.com (USA)
    Poutine and Stargazing at the Jasper Dark Sky Festival
  • Christine O'Toole, Washington Post (USA)
    How circus-loving Montreal has persisted as the big top of the world
  • Karen Burshtein, Mercedes Benz Canada Magazine (Canada)
    Unfrozen in Time

The finalist entries above will be judged by Alyson Walker, VP Brand Partnerships - Bell Media.

Culinary Canada:

  • Kerry van der Jagt, Fairfax Traveller (Australia)
    Prince Edward County: Canada’s unlikely wine capital
  • Michael Shapiro, Inspirato Magazine (USA)
    Go Fish: Vancouver chefs lead the way on sustainable seafood
  • Chris Johns, Globe and Mail (Canada)
    Coast to coast: Why Tofino and Newfoundland have the most exciting food scenes in Canada

The finalist entries above will be judged by Gail Simmons, Food & Wine’s Special Projects Director, Permanent Judge on BRAVO’s “Top Chef,” and Co-founder of Bumble Pie Productions.

Vibrant Cities:

  • Alyssa Schwartz, Vogue (USA)
    Why Victoria, British Columbia should be your next weekend getaway
  • John Lee, LA Times (USA)
    On-foot beer crawling in Vancouver's East Van, the craft beer capital of Canada
  • Anna Beatriz Siqueira, Cinemax (Brazil)
    East Coast

The finalist entries above will be judged by Jackie Braun, VP, Director - Consumer & Digital Marketing (Acting), MasterCard.

Adventure at all Levels:

  • Dave Shively, Canoe & Kayak (USA)
    Reality Check
  • Guy Wilkinson, Qantas Travel Insider (Australia)
    Top Gear
  • Rodrigo Maruco Ruas de Oliveira, Viagem Cultural (Brazil)
    Whistler, Canada

The finalist entries above will be judged by Todd Wagner VP, Entertainment Platform & Operations, GoPro.

Natural Wonders:

  • Karl Teuschl, 3sat (Germany)
    Faszination Kanada: Die Arktis - Expedition in die Nordwestpassage
  • Shaney Hudson, National Geographic Traveller (UK)
    Canada: On the prowl
  • Cecilia Nunez, Food & Travel Magazine (Mexico)
    Naturaleza En Estado Puro 

The finalist entries above will be judged by Alex Howard, Destination Editor - Canada & Western US, Lonely Planet

Best Media Itinerary:

  • Tourism Whistler
  • Rocky Mountaineer
  • Tourism Sault Ste. Marie

The finalist entries above will be judged by Norie Quintos, Editor-at-Large, National Geographic Travel Media, noriequintos.com

Most Innovative PR Campaign:

  • Travel Alberta
  • Tourism Vancouver
  • InterContinental Hotels Group

The finalist entries above will be judged by Wendy Perrin, WendyPerrin.com

The winners will be announced at GoMedia Canada 2016 in Montreal, QC on October 19th.



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