Ontario150, a year-long celebration will honour the 15oth anniversary of Confederation next year and will help chart a course for the future of the province.
Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement on Friday in Ottawa alongside Eleanor McMahon, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport. Ontario will support hundreds of community-based projects that will leave lasting social and cultural legacies across the province and contribute to economic growth.
Wynee said: “The 150th anniversary of Confederation is an opportunity for people across our province to come together to celebrate our achievements and build a shared vision for the future. Through Ontario150, our government will invest in people and infrastructure to help build a stronger and more inclusive province in the years ahead.”
Funding will include $25 million to renovate, repair and retrofit existing community and cultural infrastructure; $7 million to help communities celebrate this historic year; and $5 million for partnership programs to help foster the next generation of Ontario leaders.
McMahon said: “Our Ontario150 program will leave a lasting legacy for our communities, engage youth, encourage cultural expression and promote participation in sport and recreation, while creating jobs and economic opportunities in every corner of the province.”
Highlights of Ontario150 will include:
- Customized programming at many of Ontario’s agencies and attractions, such as the Royal Ontario Museum, Science North and the McMichael Canadian Art Collection
- An Ontario150 logo and an updated version of Ontario’s unofficial anthem, A Place to Stand, A Place to Grow, which was written for a short film of the same name screened at the Ontario Pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal
- Celebrations in Ottawa, where millions of local residents, other Canadians and international visitors will gather to commemorate this milestone
- The Invictus Games, an international sporting event for wounded soldiers that Toronto will host in 2017.
Ontario, Québec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are the original provinces of Canada, which was founded by these former British North American colonies on July 1, 1867. The film A Place to Stand won the 1967 Academy Award for Best Live Action Short.
Jim Watson, Mayor of the City of Ottawa, said that:”This investment is a strong vote of confidence in our city, and it will have a significant impact on the caliber of celebrations being planned for Canada’s 150th birthday. Together with our provincial partners, we will ensure that Ottawa, our nation’s capital, shines brightly as we welcome Canadians and visitors from all over the world.”
The celebrations will include the Lieutenant Governor’s Visionaries Prize, a series of youth-oriented forums across Ontario for young people to share ideas on building a brighter future.