March 06, 2011

High-end tours for Europeans

Native culture tours could provide job training, economic development

By Barbara SoderlinCanyon Lake Resort owner Mike Derby is working with tribal economic development leaders to put together a "high-end" Native American theme tour package aimed at Europeans with a keen interest in Native history and culture.

The tours are not just a way to make money, Derby said, they're a catalyst for tribal economic development and an educational opportunity for Native youths.

Tourism industry experts say there is untapped opportunity for Native culture tourism in western South Dakota. But developing that market can be controversial. Some are reluctant to look for profit in the painful history of Native and white relations or don't want to invite outsiders to traipse on their lands.

Others see it as much-needed economic development and a chance to show the best of Native culture to the world.
Comment:  For more on Native tourism, see Hualapai Tourism Center in Kingman and Cherokee Civil War Tourism.

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