Railway Trail becomes ‘Rail Trail’
The Railway Trail is being given a new nickname and higher profile to make it a bigger part of the island's tourism experience.
It will now be known as the “Rail Trail” to make it snappier for hashtags, according to a press release from the Bermuda Tourism Authority.
Pat Phillip-Fairn, chief product and experiences development officer, said: “Bermuda is increasingly the choice of younger travellers looking for sport, adventure and culture and the Rail Trail can deliver that.”
The BTA has three objectives over the plan, called “Rediscover the Rail Trail”:
• reimagine the Rail Trail as a modern-day tourism asset with cultural relevance
• rediscover its benefits as a health and wellness experience
• refine as a year-round adventure for visitors and locals.
Explaining the new nickname, BTA director of public and stakeholder relations Glenn Jones said: “A snappier name built for a hashtag instead of a museum is one way we hope to modernise the asset.
“It's not an official name change; we don't have the authority to do anything like that. But just like we all sometimes use Bermy in place of Bermuda because it's more youthful, we hope Rail Trail has a similar impact.”
#RailTrailBDA will be used as part of the BTA's 2017 plan which calls for one event in March in the East End, and a second in November in the West End, a “strategic approach to use both ends of the shoulder season”.
Mrs Phillip-Fairn said: “The Rail Trail can definitely play a role in our refined position as a truly year-round destination.
“Residents are already using the Rail Trail more because of recent improvements and better connectivity so at the BTA we want to take that momentum and inspire even more enhancements and more links.
“We can do this working with Friends of the Railway Trail, our partners in government and a lively group of entrepreneurs who continue to bring fresh business ideas to the trail and to tourism in general.”
The BTA kicks off its Rail Trail plan with an event Sunday, March 5, along the Hamilton Parish stretch of the Rail Trail between Shelly Bay and Bailey's Bay.
Health and wellness experiences like paddleboards, yoga and soca-size will be on offer for free at the Shelly Bay end while Gombeys, rum swizzle and island music will dominate at Bailey's Bay Cricket Club.
There will be healthy or culturally relevant food available at each end of the journey.
Along the way, the BTA will plan surprises to excite participants and challenge them to experience the Rail Trail in a new way. Visitors and locals are welcome.
Mr Jones said: “Our ‘surprise and delight' activations are where we want to inspire entrepreneurs. “Ultimately, we hope they see the Rail Trail as a tourism opportunity ready for services that enhance the experience of those who use it.
“As we successfully increase usage of the Rail Trail we increase job opportunities for Bermudians.”
The BTA added thanks to a collection of partners and entrepreneurs who have enthusiastically jumped on board to help the country rediscover the Rail Trail.
Free registration for attendees of the event is available online.