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Prior to 2002, Whistler was buzzing with hundreds of tourists looking to buy a condo or home that was going to go up in value next year by $50,000 to $250,000. This excitement and passion to own a place in Whistler brought substantial money to the community that benefited our local businesses. Today, I see very few people coming to Whistler excited about buying a property that will increase in value substantially over the next year. We had 15 years of unprecedented tourist counts and we became a community of order-takers — just sit and wait, the tourists will flow in, and we?ll make another bank deposit. Today being an order-taker doesn?t ?cut it?. We must start prospecting, a word that Bill Gates and Donald Trump are very good at. It means talking to a prospect who might say no, or to a supplier about getting a better price on the inventory we need for our business to function. We need to treat the tourists well enough that they want to stay an extra day. If everyone stayed an extra day, we would all be very successful. I wonder if we are better off to give the tourist a $35 parking ticket instead of giving a polite warning for the first offence (the warning could include a $1 gift certificate to any or all of the coffee houses in Whistler). Much of our advertising money is spent to overcome bad service or lack of courtesy.
Considering these factors, I am surprised business is as good as it is and I believe Tourism Whistler and RMOW, in general terms, have done a very credible job.
Itch but no scratch for sewer
We read with concern the article by Betty Rebellato in the NatureSpeak column that once again people swimming in Alta Lake are suffering from swimmer's itch.
Residents along the west side of Alta Lake have for many years observed that the lake is no longer as pristine as it was and at least once each summer has to be closed because of a high e-coli count. One of the contributing factors to this must be due to the fact that there is still no sewer line to the 35 homes along Alta lake Road. Many are old cabins with antiquated septic systems and the residue eventually leaches into the lake. We all know "it" doesn't go uphill!