Premier's remarks at the annual Nowruz reception at Queen's Park
It's a pleasure for me to welcome all of you to celebrate Nowruz at Queen's Park, where a few years ago, led by MPP Reza Moridi, all parties supported a resolution recognizing Nowruz.
I'm pleased to be joined by so many of my caucus colleagues today.
We're here in good numbers because we're very proud of Reza and we're very proud of our Iranian community.
Nowruz as you all know celebrates the new year marked by the beginning of spring -- a beautiful time of the year, a time of hope and optimism.
Sometimes it can seem like winter won't let go, but hope springs eternal -- the days are getting longer, the weather is getting a little warmer and Nowruz -- the Iranian new year -- warms all of us.
It's a time to reconnect with family and friends, give thanks for the people in our lives and appreciate the high quality of life we enjoy here in Ontario.
I truly believe one of the foundations of our prosperity is our diversity.
It makes us stronger, giving us the best of cultures from throughout the world.
And I'm thankful that ancient Persian culture is part of the fabric of Ontario.
It is a culture that has given so much to humanity.
As Premier of a province that is harnessing the energy of the wind, I'm thankful for Persia's invention of windmills.
With the rising prominence of Toronto as one of the world's premier financial centres, I'm thankful for Persia's invention of banking.
And as someone who loves the Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Arcade Fire, I am thankful for Persia's invention of the guitar.
Although on second thought, since I have a son who plays the electric guitar at home, I'm not so sure about that.
But most of all, I am thankful for all the contributions each of you make every day, each in your own way, helping us build a strong economy and an open, caring, accepting, society.
Thank you for giving to others, for loving your families, for leading your communities, for inspiring your young people, and for preserving your culture and traditions, because when you do all that you're building a stronger Ontario.
Let me say this: and it is my earnest wish, that soon, the people of Iran will come to know what you and I enjoy together here -- rich freedoms, which are after all the birthright of people everywhere on this tiny planet we share.
And my thoughts are with you, and your families and friends living in Iran, who may be a source of worry for you.
But Nowruz makes us hopeful.
And living in Ontario, Canada, makes us grateful.
As families gather for Nowruz, it reminds us that one single, powerful, noble ideal has inspired every generation of Ontarians: we will do whatever it takes to secure a bright future for our children and grandchildren.
That ideal is where all the rich cultures in Ontario intersect and bind us in a common purpose.
So, I want to wish all of you the best for a wonderful, happy and prosperous new year as we continue, together, to build the greatest province in the best country in the world.
Sale no Mobarak!