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Ontario Boosting Cultural Tourism Across the Province

News Release

Ontario Boosting Cultural Tourism Across the Province

Province Supporting Marketing and Outreach Efforts to Strengthen Local Economies and Create Jobs

Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport

Ontario is supporting 36 arts and cultural events this spring and summer to strengthen and grow cultural tourism and draw visitors to communities across the province. 

Glenn Thibeault, MPP for Sudbury, made the announcement today, on behalf of Daiene Vernile, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, at Science North in Sudbury.

Science North is receiving support to run programming focused on extreme sport. This initiative is expected to attract over 109,000 visitors and will include Beyond Human Limits, a travelling exhibit about the science and innovation of extreme sports; Experience the Thrill, a fun and informative series of activities and events about extreme sports; as well as a speaker series featuring extreme sports athletes.

The province supports cultural festival and event organizers to market and promote their events. Cultural tourism events can range from large art and music festivals to smaller events that celebrate local culture in communities across Ontario.

Supporting local economies through cultural tourism is part of Ontario's plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.

Quick Facts

  • Ontario is providing over $3 million to 36 arts and culture organizations this spring and summer through the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund (OCAF), to market and promote their unique events and exhibits and bring visitors to communities across the province.
  • OCAF has provided $150,000 to help market and promote Science North’s Experience the Thrill initiative.
  • Since 2013, OCAF-funded events have attracted over 22 million visitors and generated over $211 million in total revenues.
  • On average, arts and culture tourists stay longer and spend almost twice as much during their visits as other tourists.
  • Culture is one of Ontario’s fastest growing sectors. Culture contributes more than $25 billion to Ontario’s economy and supports almost 270,000 jobs.

Additional Resources


Daiene Vernile

“We are excited to support many fun, interesting and provocative events across the province this spring and summer. Our government is committed to strengthening cultural tourism, which helps to grow local economies and create jobs. The Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund helps organizations develop, promote and present their events and exhibits to new audiences, drawing more visitors who inject new money into the local economy.”

Daiene Vernile

Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport

Glenn Thibeault

“I am excited to see the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund support Science North in their efforts to reach new audiences and attract visitors to Sudbury. OCAF funding will be used to publicize and promote Experience the Thrill to markets across the province. By investing in Science North, we are helping to build a strong and prosperous economy in Sudbury and the surrounding area.”

Glenn Thibeault

MPP, Sudbury

“On behalf of the OCAF board, I am excited to “Experience The Thrill” at Science North this spring and summer, and even more thrilled that the Fund is able to support so many exciting cultural events around Ontario. From Doors Open to Luminato, from the Ottawa Chamberfest and Tulip Festival to the opening of a new contemporary art museum (MOCA) in Toronto, visitors and tourists will have an embarrassment of riches this spring and summer.”

John McKellar

Chair, Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund

“The support announced today from the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund is a critical element in attracting more tourists to Science North who will be able to experience the Beyond Human Limits travelling exhibit and the full slate of programs and activities including Experience the Thrill!”

Guy Labine

CEO, Science North

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