Perivale Gallery receives Destination Northern Ontario social media award

Perivale Gallery owner Shannon McMullan has really put Manitoulin on the map through her deft use of social media.

SAULT STE. MARIE – Destination Northern Ontario celebrated the third Northern Ontario Tourism Week online again this year and announced its slate of winners in the NOTI Leader Awards. Perivale Gallery made the cut for the second time, this time as tops in the Market and Communications category.

“ It is such an honour to receive this prestigious award,” said gallery owner Shannon McMullan. “This exciting news truly blew us away. Promoting tourism has been a passion ever since my teenage years, when I worked in tourist information booths in Sudbury for several summers and hosted and guided bilingual bus tours for the Sudbury Chamber of Commerce. After a 35-year teaching career in the Arts in Ottawa and Brockville and a relocation to Manitoulin to take over Perivale Gallery, I had to get with the program and learn to use a computer for more than just email and report cards.”

Ms. McMullan went to work with the all the passion and dedication she has applied to everything she has tackled in life and soon things began to fall into place.

“The Perivale Gallery Facebook page currently has almost 7,000 followers,

 she said. “I began a number of Twitter accounts to market the Island, including @manitoulinmagic ( which now boasts more than 8,200 followers); @ManitoulinIsle (with 1,346 followers) and @PerivaleGallery (with 2,192 followers). Instagram is growing for us and TikTok, well… it is just a matter of time.”

The learning curves have been steep at times, but Ms. McMullan remains undaunted. “I personally thrive on participation in collaboration and growth opportunities with the goal to strengthen and celebrate tourism and heritage as a whole throughout the North,” she said, adding “thank you so much to all the Perivale staff, artists and wonderful supporters. The inspiration of Team Perivale makes it all worthwhile.”

Other award recipients include: Workforce Development and Training to 101 Experiences; COVID-19 Response and Recovery to Kivi Park; Product Development to The Agawa Canyon Train Station; Investment Attraction to the Town of Blind River; and Tourism Innovator of the Year to Dean Main of Terrace Bay.

Representing the winner of the Investment Attraction award, Jon Cada from Mississauga First Nation and Karen Bittner of the Town of Blind River issued a joint statement: “Mississauga First Nation and the Town of Blind River have worked through the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure tourism development, particularly enhancements to infrastructure, did not lapse. Both communities share a mutual goal to develop tourism drivers, accessible recreation, education, truth and reconciliation awareness, as well as projects that invite a variety of users.  Once the projects are fully completed, our communities will be proud to be host to an accessible trail loop. We would like to thank our funders and partners for their patience while we navigated seemingly endless pandemic hurdles.”