Office of Tourism Development

Developing Alaska Rural Tourism (DART)

Developing Aalska Rural Tourism

Developing Aalska Rural Tourism

Developing Aalska Rural Tourism

What is D.A.R.T?

The Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development, Division of Economic Development and the U.S. Economic Development Administration have been providing technical assistance, training, and business mentorship to rural Alaska communities, and rural tourism businesses through the Developing Alaska Rural Tourism (DART) project. D.A.R.T. is an 18-month program (which began last fall) aimed at improving the tourism industry of rural Alaska.

Technical Assistance and Training

The D.A.R.T. program has been working on many projects relating to technical assistance and training.

These projects include:

  • A New Regional Tourism Website for Southwest Alaska
  • Tour Guide Training in Southwest Alaska
  • AlaskaHost – Customer Service Training for the Visitor Industry
  • CulturalHost – Cultural Tourism Training Program
  • Tour Product Assessments – Prince of Wales Island, Petersburg, & Wrangell
  • Cultural and Ecotourism Product Assessments – Kuskokwim Delta & Bering Strait
  • Targeted Workshops – Operating a B&B; Restaurant Management, Gift Shop Management, other
  • “Tourism in Rural Alaska” Program – Prince William Sound Community College
  • Charter Boat - Freshwater 6-Pack License Training – Yukon River Communities
  • Marketing Plan for a new Cultural Center in Southeast Alaska.

Tourism Mentorship Assistance Program – TMAP

We have paired 9 new rural tourism businesses with experienced business mentors who will help them with their business and marketing plans, and their websites. The current mentorship program runs for approximately one year and began with an orientation (face-to-face) meeting in Anchorage January 19 and 20, 2009.

Our 2009 TMAP Participants include: aYukon River wilderness lodge near Ruby, a polar bear tour business in Kaktovik, a tour guide in Gambell, a fishing and tour guide in Perryville, a rafting tour on the Yukon river, a B&B in Solomon, culture camps in Bethel and on the Kuskokwim Delta, a B&B in Copper Center, and a wilderness lodge on Admiralty Island.