Role of Winter Festivals in Cultural Heritage Preservation and Promotion of Inner Tourism

Lead Author Valery, Gordin
Institution Contact National Research University Higher School of Economics, 16 Sojuza Pechatnikov Str., 190008, St. Petersburg (Russia)
Co-Authors Mariya Dedova, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Russia
Theme Theme 5: New Markets for the Arctic, including Trade, Tourism and Transportation
Session Name 5.2 Arctic Tourism: The interplay between supply and demand, culture and environment
Datetime Thu, Sep 15, 2016 11:15 AM - 11:30 AM
Presentation Type Oral
Abstract text The present study seeks to explore the role of winter festivals in preservation of intangible cultural heritage and promotion of tourist destinations in Russia among local tourists. There are dozens of festivals held annually during winter time throughout the Arctic area of the country. These are predominantly community festivals featuring local traditions and customs. The festival organisers actively employ mythological tales and legends in promotion campaigns and directly at the events and diversify programmes with popular winter adventures like ice fishing, snowmobiling, animal safaris and excursions, skiing and snowboarding, etc.
Organisation of community festivals enables to enhance the sense of identity and place for local people living in the Arctic. This is the key to sustainable development of tourism as residents during and after festivals turn to their traditions, their folklore and start to execute unique patterns of leisure and entertainment. Through preservation of intangible cultural heritage communities receive a number of social impacts such as building up social capital and advancing social cohesion. Emergence of positive outcomes from community festivals help to attract tourists not only during events, but also in ordinary, uneventful, time as they become interested in learning more about living in the Arctic region.
The study is based on mixed-method approach. At the first stage, content analysis of winter festivals’ websites is conducted. Then information available at various open resources for tourists such as websites of tour agencies, TripAdvisor and local tourist forums is screened. Based on results of content analysis interviews with festivals’ organizers are arranged. The results of the study contribute to better understanding of the nature and scope of myths and legends use in winter festivals and their role in tourism development in Russia.
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