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April - Table of Contents

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2010 Board of Directors

Joanne Sasvari
Media, British Columbia



Judy Hammond

CLEAR Communications, Conference Co-Chair


Dale Dunlop

Media, Nova Scotia



Irene Knight

CN Tower


Evelyn Hannon

Media, Ontario

Catherine Kaloutsky

VIA Rail Canada Inc.

Margaret Mackenzie

New Brunswick Tourism

Ursula Maxwell-Lewis

Media, British Columbia

Hélèna Katz

Media, Northwest Territory


Joanne Sasvari

British Columbia Chapter

Deb Cummings

Alberta Chapter

Marty Rice

Ontario Chapter

Sandra Phinney

Atlantic Chapter

New Members




Contributors to This Issue
Lola Brown

Deb Cummings

Josephine Matyas

Sandra Phinney

Marty Rice

Chris Robinson

Janie Robinson

Joanne Sasvari

Do you get travel spring fever? Or, as a travel specialist, is it any different than the three other seasons of the year? For some reason, I've found myself with a jam-packed travel schedule this spring . . . and I suspect that the reason is that I love to travel and I love to write about so many fantastic destinations.

I've decided that that usual springtime activity can wait - the spring cleaning of washing windows, vacuuming screens, hosing down the siding and raking the garden. I'm on the road for the spring . . . and that's where I love it! I hope that you find yourself at the spot you love, whether it is on the road, in front of the keyboard, or - should you have a masochistic streak - washing windows. (* Mine are still available, should you want to wash more.)

- Josephine Matyas, TMAC Travels editor

Message From the President

Changes on the board

As most of you have doubtless heard by now, the TMAC national board has regretfully accepted Hélèna Katz's resignation from the position of president. We all recognize what a terrific job she has done over the past year and are glad to report that even if she's unable to take on the demanding role of president at this time, she will be staying on the board and playing an active part on the finance and governance committees.

I am honoured to have been nominated to step into the role of president, and feel very fortunate to have such a dynamic team to work with. For those who don't know me, I am a freelance writer from Vancouver and first became involved with TMAC in 2000, when I was travel editor at the National Post. I've been the chair of the B.C. chapter the last three years as well as conference co-chair the last two, and am very excited about tackling the challenges that lie ahead.

And "challenge" is indeed the operative word. These are turbulent times for all of us, whether we are travel writers or industry professionals. But challenging times also bring great opportunities, and I believe TMAC is in a great position to take advantage of those opportunities.

We've already got the year off to a great start with a successful conference in Wales, and we have a board just bristling with innovative ideas.

I'd like to introduce the TMAC national board of directors . . .



Joanne Sasvari (media)



Judy Hammond (industry)



Dale Dunlop (media)



Irene Knight (industry)



Evelyn Hannon (media)

Catherine Kaloutsky (industry)

Hélèna Katz (media)

Margaret Mackenzie (industry)

Ursula Maxwell-Lewis (media)


Alberta chapter chair

Debra Cummings (media)


Atlantic chapter chair

Sandra Phinney (media)


British Columbia chapter chair (interim)

Joanne Sasvari (media)


Ontario chapter co-chair

Marty Rice (industry)

Here's to an exciting, successful and profitable 2010!

- Joanne Sasvari, national president, TMAC

Chapter News
bcBRITISH COLUMBIA - Upcoming events:

April 27: B.C. Chapter Annual General Meeting

We invite all chapter members to join us for the Annual General Meeting at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 27, in the lounge at the Sylvia Hotel (1154 Gilford St., 604-681-9321,

For those who missed the conference in Cardiff, this is your opportunity to catch up on the issues that were raised there and learn about some significant decisions that came out of the national AGM.

This is also your opportunity to affect the future of our chapter by having your say on who will sit on B.C.'s new board. Even better, this is your opportunity to put your name forward to run for the board. If you are interested in running, please forward your name to secretary Meaghen Ng and let us know what position you might be interested in taking on.

For more details, check our Facebook page and your email inbox; to RSVP, contact Meaghen Ng at

- Joanne Sasvari, British Columbia chapter chair

abALBERTA- April in Alberta means the start of spring on the heels of winter. The sun is shining, the river pathways are bustling, the snow has melted and TMACers are anxiously awaiting the next exciting Alberta event.

April 13 brings the next soiree at Calgary's newest destination restaurant, bar and gathering place - CHARCUT Roast House ( Working with Immedia PR, your TMAC Alberta board is putting together a very special Munch & Mingle event in Calgary's brand new boutique hotel - Le Germain Calgary. CHARCUT's cuisine is self-described as chef-driven, using local ingredients, with Italian and Country French accents. The event promises to be a 'must-attend' for Alberta members.


Plans are currently in the works for the annual Fall Professional Development and Experiential weekend. This year's event will be hosted in Alberta's capital city of Edmonton and promises to be filled with intriguing education and experiences that will surely entice Alberta members to attend. Stay tuned for details in the coming months.

We bid adieu to Alberta board members, Jennifer Santos and Jessica Harcombe Fleming at the end of this month, as they embark on the new ventures of parenthood. We wish them both all the best for their year away!

If Alberta members know of any new media or industry who would be interested in joining our ever-growing provincial membership, please send their contact details to TMAC Alberta's membership coordinator Neil Bousquet at As Jessica and Jennifer are on leave for a year, we would like to reiterate our desire to have interested members get involved with the TMAC Alberta board of directors. Please contact chapter chair, Deb Cummings at for more information.

- Deb Cummings, Alberta chapter chair

onONTARIO- The Ontario chapter's March M&M was hosted by Peterborough and the Kawarthas and we had a wonderful evening. The location was spectacular at the Ontario Trade and Investment Centre where 48 members and two guests (including 29 media members) were treated to a spectacular view of Toronto from the 35th floor. The April meeting will be hosted by Huron Tourism Association and the County of Huron.

The Ontario members who attended the AGM in Wales enjoyed the location and the hospitality of the Wales contingent. The conference was very successful. The Ontario chapter is delighted that Ottawa was selected for the site of the 2011 conference, where Jantine van Kregten will be our host.

It's election time and Anne Martin, Kate Pocock and Ursula Beamish will be heading up the nomination and election committee. Please contact Anne Martin at to nominate fellow Ontario members that might want to run.

We are also planning to have at least three professional development seminars over the next 18 months, so if you have any suggestions for unique topics that could benefit members please contact Marty Rice at

- Mike Keenan (media) & Marty Rice (industry)

Ontario co-chairs and

atATLANTIC - Plans are underway for our spring chapter meeting in New Brunswick, June 5-7. Margaret MacKenzie and her team (N.B. Tourism) have set up an exciting weekend in St. Andrews. This gives industry and media the opportunity to get to know each other (along with chapter meeting/consultation) and media will have lots of opportunities to find stories.

Meanwhile, Lola Augustine is setting up a chapter Facebook page that we'll be trying out as a way to keep in touch on a regular basis.

Big plans are underway for a major day long PD session in Halifax this fall focused on the world of social media. More on this later.

- Sandra Phinney, Atlantic chapter chair

Conference Committee Report


After holding our first-ever international conference in 2010, it's only fitting that in 2011 TMAC will be coming home to our nation's capital. We are very excited about the many great opportunities the Capital Region will offer for the 2011 conference, and are looking forward to telling you all about them as we finalize the details.

The 2011 conference will be a celebration of everything that makes Canada such a great travel destination and such a great source of story ideas.

For starters, 2011 marks the lead up to the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812, one of Canada's most defining moments, and the city will be buzzing with all sorts of events to mark this historic occasion.

More than that, though, Ottawa is a centre of politics, education, culture and culinary excellence. It's bursting with museums, galleries, restaurants and shops, not to mention the Parliament and Rideau Hall. Our biggest challenge right now is having to choose among the many great opportunities for events and tours. It's a tough job, as they say . . .

And don't forget to keep posted on what's happening with the Ottawa conference by following the Twitter feed at 2011TMAC.

Although we're concentrating on the 2011 conference right now, it's not the only one we're working on.

We are in the process of deciding where TMAC will be going in 2012 (somewhere in Atlantic Canada, so start thinking shellfish and sailboats), and we're only a few months away from soliciting bids for 2013. If you represent a destination in Western Canada, think about what hosting 100 or so talented travel writers might do for your region. We'd love to come visit you!

- Joanne Sasvari, TMAC conference committee co-chair

Member News

Member_NewsHere's an item that may be of interest to freelance writers and self-employed industry members . . .

More information on the federal government's extension of EI special benefits to the self-employed is now available at here.

Media member Amy Rosen will be writing a new bi-weekly travel column in the National Poststarting in May (in addition to her weekly "Dish" column). She welcomes TMAC members' ideas for naming the column. (Nothing dirty, please.)

Hurray Ron! Ron Pradinuk of Winnipeg was awarded a first place and two merit awards from the 2009 North American Travel Journalists Association writers' competition. Pradinuk received a first place award for a destination video he produced on behalf of the Winnipeg Convention Centre. His merit award for landscape/seascape photography was for a shot of the Peggy's Cove lighthouse taken during the Halifax TMAC conference tour. The other merit award was for an Italy story in the newspaper Destination Travel category.

Atlantic chapter media member Bruce Bishop is now represented by Catherine Sands, an agent for the Sarah Freyman Literary Agency in New York. She is actively seeking a publisher for his book proposal. Keep posted.

Media member Sandra Phinney joined the blogging world as a regular travel columnist

for Life As A Human,

Want to learn more about Honduras? Tune in to a variety of short videos showcasing this Central American country's natural beauty, culture, tourist offerings, and more: If the videos spark your interest for future story opportunities, email industry member Amanda Drake,, for more information about this emerging destination.

To Market, To Market


by TMAC media member, Lola Augustine Brown

In this month's column, markets columnist Lola Augustine Brown will highlight a few magazines from the United Kingdom.

Please click here to read the article.

Ask an Expert

Janie Robinson
April 2010 - Janie Robinson
Chris Robinson
April 2010 - Chris Robinson

This month, Janie Robinson and Chris Robinson advise TMAC members on pitching to radio.

Please click here to read the article.

TMAC Travels - Newsletter Submission Guidelines
Submissions should fit into one of the following categories:


Professional news about you: books published, awards won, new markets obtained, positions attained, requests for travel-related information (story-specific requests ONLY), contact/profile information updates/changes.

Social notices about you: weddings, babies, non-industry awards and so on (at the editor's discretion and with a 50-word limit; these must be things directly connected to the member).

NOT allowed: requests for comps (airfare, accommodation, tickets, etc.), assignment requests, promotion of stories already written.


Professional news about you/your company: announcement ONLY of new products, new clients, travel-related info requests, contact/profile updates/changes.

Social notices: as per Media, above.

NOT allowed: press releases, promotion of anything beyond new products, new clients or awards. (For information on distributing electronic press releases to all media members for a fee of $75, please contact TO Corp at

The newsletter also seeks chapter news and info on press trips (short descriptions with dates, rough itineraries, requirements - e.g. assignment letter) as well as tips, news and updates submitted by members.

Items must be sent, with "TMAC TRAVELS" in the subject line, to Josephine Matyas at Items may be edited for length, grammar or clarity. The newsletter will be delivered to members by e-mail by the middle of every month.  Material should be sent by the 1st of each month unless the editor gives prior approval.

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