Ontario Festivals and Events Get A Boost



    McGuinty Government Supporting Festivals and Events in Local Communities

    TORONTO, April 15 /CNW/ -

    NEWS

    Ontario is enhancing the support it provides to festivals and events
across the province.
    The Province will invest $11 million in Celebrate Ontario 2009 to support
224 community events across Ontario, an increase of 150 per cent over last
year. This investment - $2 million more than the $9 million originally
announced - recognizes the important economic benefits these events have for
communities.
    Since 2007, the McGuinty government has invested $25 million in the
Celebrate Ontario program, as part of an effort to encourage more tourists to
discover the province.
    From the Canadian Tulip Festival in Ottawa to the Schrieber Heritage Days
in Schrieber, festivals and events boost local economies by attracting new
visitors to communities across the province. This funding will help the
festivals and events enhance their tourism offerings and give visitors new
reasons to travel in Ontario.

    QUOTES

    "Our government recognizes the economic impact that festivals and events
have on local communities throughout the province. By enabling community
events to improve their product, we are helping them reach new audiences,
create more jobs and generate more economic activity."
    - Monique Smith, Minister of Tourism

    "Festivals and events have a huge economic impact on their communities.
With Ontario's commitment to enhancing the quality of festivals and events in
this province, we are in turn helping to fill hotels, bed & breakfasts,
restaurants, and other local attractions - the ripple effects are many."
    - Gary Masters, Executive Director, Festivals and Events Ontario.

    "Celebrate Ontario funding helps us to improve our programming and keep a
competitive edge in the tourism marketplace. It's not only an investment in
our festival, it's an investment in the many local businesses that rely on the
visitors we draw."
    - Hitomi Suzuta, President of the Ottawa Folk Festival's Board of
    Directors

    
    QUICK FACTS

    -   300,000 people in Ontario are directly or indirectly employed by the
        tourism industry
    -   In 2007, tourists spent over $22 billion in Ontario
    -   Last year, 90 festivals and events were funded through Celebrate
        Ontario 2008
    -   In the 2008 Ontario Budget, the McGuinty government committed to
        stable and ongoing funding for the Celebrate Ontario program

    LEARN MORE

    See full list of Celebrate Ontario 2009 recipients
(http://www.tourism.gov.on.ca/english/festivals/festivals_events.htm).
    Discover things to do in Ontario (http://www.ontariotravel.net/).
    Read about Celebrate Ontario success stories
(http://webx.newswire.ca/click/?id=bfd7b6b956ccac7).

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                                                     ontario.ca/tourism-news
                                                      Disponible en français
    





For further information:

For further information: Lisa DiLollo, Tourism Minister's Office, (416)
325-4543; Mark Thompson, Communications Branch, (416) 325-8391

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