Windsor's BIAs hoping to sell main street experience to Americans

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Multiple business improvement associations in Windsor and Essex county planning to bet big on the low Canadian dollar to bring more Americans across the border.

The Windsor BIA Advisory Committee is hoping to launch a $100,000 advertising campaign across Detroit and the Metro Detroit area to promote small business areas and the "main street experience."

Ads should appear by the end of June and run for about four months.

"The campaign is up to 60 per cent of the goal of $100,000 committed, so far the rest looks good," said Rino Bortolin, who chairs the committee.

Advertisements will appear on billboards, in magazines and newspapers and on radio and social media.

Americans get '30 per cent more' on their dollar

Bortolin said it's important to remember just how often Americans used to come to Windsor.

"They came quite a bit before and as soon as the clogging of the border happened as far back as Sept. 11, 2001, we've seen it slowly go back up" said Bortolin. "What we want to remind people is that you get 30 per cent more on your dollar."

Bortolin said the city of Windsor is not involved in this campaign, but the committee has reached out to Windsor Essex Economic Development Corporation and Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island.

So far they have not heard back from either organization. But Bortolin said the small businesses did not want to get lost in the tourism discussion.

"We love having Americans come over for the wineries, for the different events, for the festivals," he said. "We felt that this was a little bit different, going for the casual visitor, the four hour visitor, someone coming over for dinner or for drinks on a Wednesday night."