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Original title is "First the Habs, now this: Toronto, Montreal team up on tourism"

 

It’s like Jennifer teaming up with Angelina. Or Harper inviting Ignatieff for a round of golf.

 

Canada’s two biggest cities have been rivals for decades on everything from hockey to food to culture to, well, even the lowly hot dog. But that’s all changing. For the first time, Canada’s versions of Ali and Frazier are teaming together and encouraging their citizens to drop the gloves — and visit the other city.

 

Starting Monday, mobile trucks will roam Montreal and Toronto, asking folks in each metropolis to go on video and confess their love for their rival city. When it’s all done, the person with the best video in each centre gets a free, luxury weekend in the other town.

 

“What we’re saying is, ‘It’s okay to cheat on your city,’” said Andrew Weir, spokesman for Tourism Toronto.

 

“They’re both wonderful cities, but there’s this perceived rivalry and I think sometimes people in Montreal feel they shouldn’t go to Toronto, and vice versa,” Weir said. “People go to New York or Chicago or Boston and that’s fine, but if someone from Montreal goes to Toronto it’s like they feel they’re betraying their own city.”

 

The campaign is aimed at breaking that attitude.

 

“We’ve never done this before,” said Tourisme Montreal spokesperson Tanya Churchmuch, who, interestingly enough, is a Toronto-born woman selling the charms of Montreal. “But we want folks to revisit the love-hate relationship between the two cities.

 

“I don’t want to say ‘hate,’” she said. “But there’s certainly a rivalry, and because of that sometimes people don’t realize that both cities have amazing strengths.”

 

Weir said Toronto still has to fight the perception that it’s all business and no fun. Montreal, on the other hand, may not be seen as family-friendly as it really is.

 

There’s a lot of cross-traffic between the two cities already, although it’s hard to track because people might drive or stay with friends or family and not register at a hotel, Churchmuch said.

 

“We want to tell people in Montreal that it’s cool to say, ‘I went to Toronto and had a fabulous time.’”

 

The mobile trucks, which Churchmuch likened to confession booths, will roll out several times in each city over the next two weeks. Folks who want to confess their love for the rival city will be able to go to a website and find out where the trucks will be, then go to the location and confess their sins. Everyone who does a video will get a designer T-shirt, and the best confession in each city gets the weekend away.

 

For Montrealers, the website is http://www.PtiteViteAvecToronto.com. For folks in Toronto, the cheeky website address is http://www.QuickieWithMontreal.com (and doesn’t that show how far this formerly dull city has come?). While this is the first time Toronto and Montreal tourism types have encouraged this sort of cross-pollination, Weir said they have cooperated in the past.

 

“We were in Brazil together a while back, putting Montreal and Toronto together as kind of a 1-2 punch, encouraging people to come to Montreal and Toronto for maybe 10 days and perhaps adding in Ottawa or Niagara Falls.”

 

Still, this is something else entirely.

 

“We want people to have fun with this,” said Churchmuch. “Torontonians can go in and confess their love affair with their mistress.”

 

Friendlier rivals

 

 

The Distillery District is one of Toronto's top tourist attractions.

 

Toronto Star file photo

 

By Jim Byers

Travel Editor

It’s like Jennifer teaming up with Angelina. Or Harper inviting Ignatieff for a round of golf.

 

Canada’s two biggest cities have been rivals for decades on everything from hockey to food to culture to, well, even the lowly hot dog. But that’s all changing. For the first time, Canada’s versions of Ali and Frazier are teaming together and encouraging their citizens to drop the gloves — and visit the other city.

 

Starting Monday, mobile trucks will roam Montreal and Toronto, asking folks in each metropolis to go on video and confess their love for their rival city. When it’s all done, the person with the best video in each centre gets a free, luxury weekend in the other town.

 

“What we’re saying is, ‘It’s okay to cheat on your city,’” said Andrew Weir, spokesman for Tourism Toronto.

 

“They’re both wonderful cities, but there’s this perceived rivalry and I think sometimes people in Montreal feel they shouldn’t go to Toronto, and vice versa,” Weir said. “People go to New York or Chicago or Boston and that’s fine, but if someone from Montreal goes to Toronto it’s like they feel they’re betraying their own city.”

 

The campaign is aimed at breaking that attitude.

 

“We’ve never done this before,” said Tourisme Montreal spokesperson Tanya Churchmuch, who, interestingly enough, is a Toronto-born woman selling the charms of Montreal. “But we want folks to revisit the love-hate relationship between the two cities.

 

“I don’t want to say ‘hate,’” she said. “But there’s certainly a rivalry, and because of that sometimes people don’t realize that both cities have amazing strengths.”

 

Weir said Toronto still has to fight the perception that it’s all business and no fun. Montreal, on the other hand, may not be seen as family-friendly as it really is.

 

There’s a lot of cross-traffic between the two cities already, although it’s hard to track because people might drive or stay with friends or family and not register at a hotel, Churchmuch said.

 

“We want to tell people in Montreal that it’s cool to say, ‘I went to Toronto and had a fabulous time.’”

 

The mobile trucks, which Churchmuch likened to confession booths, will roll out several times in each city over the next two weeks. Folks who want to confess their love for the rival city will be able to go to a website and find out where the trucks will be, then go to the location and confess their sins. Everyone who does a video will get a designer T-shirt, and the best confession in each city gets the weekend away.

 

For Montrealers, the website is http://www.PtiteViteAvecToronto.com. For folks in Toronto, the cheeky website address is http://www.QuickieWithMontreal.com (and doesn’t that show how far this formerly dull city has come?). While this is the first time Toronto and Montreal tourism types have encouraged this sort of cross-pollination, Weir said they have cooperated in the past.

 

“We were in Brazil together a while back, putting Montreal and Toronto together as kind of a 1-2 punch, encouraging people to come to Montreal and Toronto for maybe 10 days and perhaps adding in Ottawa or Niagara Falls.”

 

Still, this is something else entirely.

 

“We want people to have fun with this,” said Churchmuch. “Torontonians can go in and confess their love affair with their mistress.”

 

Friendlier rivals

 

Andrew Weir's favourite three things about Toronto:

 

1. Kensington Market is the best. Even if it's not the pedestrian-only days, it's still a great place to wander amidst all the shops.

 

2. I love the Beach in the summer. I still call it the Beaches, though. It's a wonderful place.

 

3. I love the Distillery District. There's great places to walk and there's a terrific mix of galleries, bars and restaurants and places to sit outside in the summer.

 

Tanya Churchmuch's favourite three things about Montreal:

 

1. The festivals in summer are spectacular. They're on all the time.

 

2. The Piknic Electronik. Every Sunday at Notre Dame there's an outdoor dance party with families and picnickers and hipsters.

 

3. Going for a Montreal bagel. There's a real rivalry between Fairmount and St. Viateur. Both are in the Mile End area and both have been there since the late 1940s.

 

(Courtesy of Thestar.com)

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Toronto and Montreal want to trade visitors‎

 

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/toronto/toronto-and-montreal-want-to-trade-visitors/article1570926/

 

Anna Mehler Paperny

From Monday's Globe and Mail

Published on Monday, May. 17, 2010 12:01AM EDT

Last updated on Monday, May. 17, 2010 3:27AM EDT

It’s okay to cheat on your hometown with its biggest rival. Or so your local tourism board would have you believe.

 

Montreal and Toronto are tag-teaming on a tourism gambit aimed at locals in both cities. The aim? To lure discerning tourists to the other’s metropolis – to get Torontonians to visit Montreal, and vice-versa.

 

“There’s always been this perceived rivalry between the two cities and we’re trying to play on that,” said Tanya Churchmuch, with Tourisme Montréal.

 

The campaign will play off the rivalry between the two cities, pegged off an Ipsos-Reid poll conducted on behalf of tourist agencies. The poll, which interviewed about 400 people in each city, found that although the majority of Torontonians visited Montreal, and vice-versa, they often didn’t tell their friends they were going.

 

Starting Monday and running until June 7, Toronto and Montreal are each hosting mobile confession booths where residents can profess why they travel to the other city – or, heaven forbid, cheer for its hockey team.

 

But the campaign’s cheeky slogan telling locals “It’s OK to cheat … on your city” has another motive: trying to deter them from cheating on Canada’s cities with those sultry U.S. destinations – grown all the more tempting now that the loonie is strong.

 

While the recession meant Canadians were more likely to vacation in Canada, if they got out of town at all, a strong Canadian dollar has local tourism agencies worried they’ll lose local visitors to southerly neighbours.

 

Andrew Weir, Tourism Toronto’s vice-president of communication, said Tourism Toronto isn’t worried as much about losing U.S. tourists – they’re trying to target more “sophisticated, urban travellers” unlikely to be deterred by the loss of advantageous exchange rates.

 

“I think the dollar at par will have more of an impact on domestic travellers,” he said. “[Parity] is the new normal. And Toronto and Montreal both represent such extraordinary urban experiences in North America – these are experiences that [American] urban travellers are prepared to pay for, because they’re worth it.”

 

 

 

Torontonians confess about their time in Montreal

http://www.quickiewithmontreal.com/

 

Montrealers confessing about their time in Toronto

http://www.ptiteviteavectoronto.com/

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