Ontario giving $1.6 million to cultural bodies to promote spring /summer events

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Commerce Court ceiling detail, Toronto. Credit: Jamaal Merrick

More than $1.6 million will be given by the Ontario government to 23 arts and culture organizations, helping them market and promote unique events and exhibits this spring and summer. From April to October 2016, communities open the doors to some of Ontario’s most intriguing and charming heritage sites. Admission is free!

Michael Coteau, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, made the announcement on Friday in Ottawa at the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat, one of the sites participating in Doors Open this year. The Ontario Heritage Trust received $175,000 for Doors Open Ontario, a program that enables residents and visitors to discover first-hand some of Ontario’s most intriguing heritage sites.

Coueatu said: “Arts and culture organizations across the province have exciting things in store for the spring and summer season. Through the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund, our government is able to help them enhance their offerings, attract more visitors and grow cultural tourism in the province.”

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Other projects being funded include:

  • An exhibit to explore the importance of the canoe to Canada, at the Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre in Midland
  • The 10th anniversary of Manifesto in Toronto, one of Canada’s biggest celebrations of hip hop culture
  • Enhancements to Thunder Bay’s Festival of India, including cultural performances, cooking courses and a digital exhibit.

The Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund (OCAF) helps strengthen tourism, which boosts local economies, creates jobs and draws visitors to communities across the province. These investments are part of a $6-million commitment over three years, beginning in 2015-16.

  • OCAF funds are provided in the form of partially repayable loans. Repayments replenish the fund and allow investment in even more projects.
  • Since 2003, Ontario has invested nearly $20 million in the fund, resulting in over $48 million in support for 476 special events and projects.
  • These events have attracted over 45 million visitors and received over $375 million in total revenues.
  • Cultural tourism in Ontario generates $3.9 billion in GDP and supports 61,000 jobs.
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Supporting tourism is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. – CINEWS

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