October 2008: Pan Am Bid Officially Launched
With the help of Ontario athletes, community and business leaders, former Ontario Premier David Peterson today officially kicked off the Toronto and Greater Golden Horseshoe Bid for the 2015 Pan/Parapan American Games.
"I'm delighted to launch our 2015 Pan Am Games Bid that showcases the great strengths of this region, and that has tremendous support from athletes, the community and all levels of government," said Peterson, Chair of the 2015 Pan Am Games Bid Committee.
"Make no mistake - we intend to work hard to win these Games," said Peterson.
"We believe the Games will be good for Canada, good for Ontario and good for the entire Greater Golden Horseshoe," said the Hon. Jim Flaherty, Minister of Finance. "It is a smart investment in Ontario's economic future, in sports infrastructure and in the future of our young athletes. That's why the federal government is committed to supporting this excellent bid."
"Ontarians are inspired and excited when they are able to attend, participate and engage in major sporting events," said Margarett Best, Ontario Minister of Health Promotion. "A successful Pan/Parapan American Games will be a catalyst for new and improved sports and recreation infrastructure for all Ontarians to lead healthier, active lives. These are some of the fundamental reasons the Pan/Parapan American Games bid is so important to our Province."
Civic representatives from across the region also participated in today's event, including Toronto Mayor David Miller. "An event of this calibre is an excellent opportunity to showcase Toronto and its passion for sport to the world," said Miller. "I know Torontonians will welcome the opportunity to host athletes and their supporters from the 42 Pan American Games member nations."
"The Canadian Olympic Committee is delighted to support this bid. It is a terrific opportunity to build needed facilities for our Olympic and Olympic aspiring athletes, and our communities," said Michael Chambers, President, Canadian Olympic Committee.
A number of Ontario athletes who have participated in Pan Am and Olympic Games took part in today's launch event. Several athletes also put on an exciting show at the event, with fencing, trampoline, rhythmic gymnastics, and judo demonstrations.
Peterson closed the event by saying that the support demonstrated to date by all levels of government, including communities from across the region, is truly impressive. "Not only will this be an inclusive bid, it will be a hallmark for inter-governmental cooperation."
The Pan Am Games are a major international multi-sport event, held every four years for athletes of the 42 PASO member nations. The Pan American Games consists of all Summer Olympic sports, plus other non-Olympic events, and serve as an Olympic-qualifier for many of the participating sports. The last edition of the games was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in July 2007 and the next edition is scheduled to take place in Guadalajara, Mexico in October 2011.