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Europeans frequenting VIC early this season


It’s no big surprise that tourists are mainly coming to western Newfoundland to see Gros Morne National Park, but a foursome of students in Corner Brook try to ensure they experience the entire region.

David McHugh and fellow student Laura Hillier help a couple at the Visitor Information Centre in Corner Brook Friday afternoon. — Star photo by Cory Hurley

David McHugh has returned to the Corner Brook Visitor Information Centre for his second summer work term. The French major at Memorial University acknowledges people from afar are well versed in the scenic park and such destinations as the Western Brook Pond Boat Tour and hike.

L’Anse aux Meadows is another popular destination, and iceberg seekers file through the doors by the dozens. The students make sure they are aware of places like the scenic Bay of Islands, which McHugh spent some time explaining to a couple this past Friday, and the Captain James Cook Historic Site in Corner Brook, but also of the special amenities around like the Newfoundland Emporium on Broadway.

Little changes in terms of the objective of working at the visitor information centre, but the students themselves change often. McHugh is one of the rare ones whose face stays the same from one year to the next.

While he is a guide of sorts for people all over the world to learn about his home province, the exchange is twofold.

“It is an interesting job,” he said. “You get to meet all sorts of people from different areas all around the world. It is always interesting to hear people’s unique takes on the areas they come through.”

It is also a job he sometimes gets to use his French expertise.

McHugh said this year seems to be pretty well on par with last, although he admitted it is a slower period of the tourism season overall. There seems to be a lot of Europeans passing through the Corner Brook area thus far, he said.

Last year, the 23-year-old was surprised to see so many people from Asian countries visiting here, something he said was nice.

While it is his job to promote tourism and help visitors as they pass through, McHugh acknowledged there is some personal pride in being a part of the industry.

“(Newfoundland and Labrador) is a great place,” he said. “We have a ton of natural beauty here, and we can see that people come from a long, long ways to get to see it.”

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