McGuinty Government Doubles Funding to Promote Economy-Boosting Festivals and Events

Archived Release

McGuinty Government Doubles Funding to Promote Economy-Boosting Festivals and Events

57 Events In Communities Across Ontario Supported Last Year TORONTO, Dec. 20 - The McGuinty government is doubling the funding available for economy-boosting festivals and special events to promote tourism throughout the province, Tourism Minister Peter Fonseca announced today. "The McGuinty government recognizes the importance of tourism to communities across the province," Fonseca said at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts, which is currently hosting Irving Berlin's White Christmas, one of 57 crowd-pleasing events the Celebrate Ontario program supported in 2007. The new $10 million in funding for Celebrate Ontario is part of the government's $30-million investment to expand the Ministry of Tourism's successful promotion and marketing campaign in Canadian and international markets. The funding was first announced in the Fall Economic Statement on December 13. Celebrate Ontario will now offer two categories: smaller, emerging events, which will be eligible for up to $100,000 in funding and larger, signature events, which will be eligible for up to $400,000. The program will also for the first time extend funding to new events. The deadline for funding applications is February 4, 2008. All information about the program, application guide and forms can be found online at www.tourism.gov.on.ca/english/festivals and www.tourism.gov.on.ca/french/festivals. "The McGuinty government's generous investment in Ontario's festivals and events is a timely present for the holiday season," said Larry Blundell, President, Festivals and Events Ontario. "This funding is a great boost for our rural areas which get a much needed economic boost from festivals and events." "We are thrilled with the success of White Christmas so far," said Dan Bambrilla, CEO of the Sony Centre. "Thanks to the funding provided by the Ontario government, we were able to expand our marketing efforts in Southwestern Ontario. As a result, our ticket sales have been very strong." This year, Celebrate Ontario provided more than $4 million to enhance festivals and events, including: - Festival of Lights, in Ingersoll, which runs until the first week of January 2008 - Irving Berlin's White Christmas, playing at the Sony Centre for the Performing Arts in Toronto until January 5, 2008 - Apple Fest, in Brighton, which ran from September 28-30, 2007. Contact Info "By extending funding for Celebrate Ontario, we are giving residents and tourists many more reasons to visit, explore and enjoy our province year-round," said Fonseca. "I can't think of a better way to celebrate the season and celebrate Ontario." The government is proposing further steps to support growth and increased jobs in Ontario's film and television sector. Effective for labour expenditures incurred after December 31, 2007 and before January 1, 2010, the Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit would increase to 35 per cent from 30 per cent, and the Ontario Production Services Tax Credit would increase to 25 per cent from 18 per cent. These proposed enhancements would provide an additional estimated $50 million in financial support in 2008-09. Disponible en français www.tourism.gov.on.ca For more information visit: www.tourism.gov.on.ca Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- MCGUINTY GOVERNMENT CELEBRATES ONTARIO WITH A $10 MILLION INVESTMENT IN FESTIVALS AND EVENTS The McGuinty government is providing $10 million to enhance festivals and events across the province through the 2008 Celebrate Ontario program. The funding is part of the Ontario government's $30 million investment in tourism, announced in the Fall Economic Statement on December 13. Celebrate Ontario Celebrate Ontario 2008 will help enhance and market new or existing festivals and events in the province. This year, the program is divided into two tiers: smaller, emerging tourism events, which will be eligible for up to $100,000, and larger, signature festivals and events, which will be eligible for up to $400,000, with additional funding of up to $100,000 to complete an economic impact assessment. Up to 85 per cent of the program funding will be used for new programming enhancements and up to 15 per cent to support the marketing and promotion of the new enhancements. Eligible applicants include private enterprises, registered not-for-profit organizations, municipalities and other authorities, and First Nations in the Province of Ontario. All information about the program, application guide and forms can be found online at www.tourism.gov.on.ca/english/festivals and www.tourism.gov.on.ca/french/festivals. Contact: Gary Wheeler Ministry of Tourism 416-325-8391 Disponible en français www.tourism.gov.on.ca www.tourism.gov.on.ca/english/festivals For further information: Alicia Farrow, Minister's Office, (416) 325-4543; Gary Wheeler, Communications Branch, Ministry of Tourism, (416) 325-8391 HELP | CONTACT US | PRIVACY | IMPORTANT NOTICES © Queen's Printer for Ontario, 2008-2009 — Last Modified: February 15, 2009 For further information: Alicia Farrow, Minister's Office, (416) 325-4543; Gary Wheeler, Communications Branch, Ministry of Tourism, (416) 325-8391