BROCKVILLE – Ontario’s Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport Lisa MacLeod joined Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes MPP Steve Clark joined organizers of the 1000 Islands Regatta’s at their opening ceremonies Saturday, to announce the event will receive $27,433 through the Celebrate Ontario program this year.
Also on hand for the announcement were Leeds-Grenville-Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes MP Michael Barrett and City of Brockville Councillor Matt Wren.
The Regatta is one of five local festivals and special events that will receive a combined total of more than $250,000 through the Celebrate Ontario program this year.
“The regatta’s organizing committee has done a tremendous job over the past 12 years to create a signature waterfront event with outstanding entertainment and world-class hydroplane racing,” said Clark. “They’ve worked tirelessly to build a great event that brings so many visitors to our community and provides an important boost to our local tourism economy.”
“It’s local events like the 1000 Islands Regatta and others like it that help to showcase the beauty of Ontario’s communities. Our government is proud to invest in events like these to drive tourism in our local economies,” said Minister MacLeod.
In addition to the regatta, Clark said the following local events will receive Celebrate Ontario funding:
Big River Festival in Brockville from August 23 to September 1: $116,843
Music on the Dock series at the Thousand Islands Playhouse in Gananoque from July 28 to August 5: $12,213
Kemptville Live from July 18-21: $88,000
South Grenville Bluegrass Festival in Spencerville from August 13-18: $6,301
“I’m proud that our government recognizes the important contributions festivals and events make to our region’s economy and how everyone involved, including hundreds of volunteers, works hard to make them happen,” said Clark. “I am pleased we are supporting these events as they continue to draw visitors from across Ontario and around the world to Leeds and Grenville. They enhance our quality of life and provide a positive economic impact to our community.”
Celebrate Ontario supports festivals and events of all sizes, helping them reach new audiences, improve the programs for visitors, benefit local economies and create new jobs. According to past recipients, every dollar invested through Celebrate Ontario results in almost $21 of visitor spending.
Prior to the announcement, Minister MacLeod and MPP Clark toured two of Brockville’s signature attractions – the Brockville Railway Tunnel and the Aquatarium.
“I was so pleased to have a chance to give our new Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport an up-close look at these venues, which bring thousands of people from across Ontario – and from around the world to our region every year,” said Clark.
Ontario is investing over $13 million in over 250 festivals and events in communities across the province, plus another $4 million in additional funding for Blockbuster events.
· The latest data from 2016 indicates that tourism supported nearly 390,000 jobs and generated over $34 billion of economic activity in Ontario.
· The tourism industry is one of the world’s fastest-growing industries.
· The tourism sector has experienced year-on-year increases in visitor spending of nearly six per cent.