During the inaugural meeting of Renfrew County Council held today, Dec.15 2020, the Honourable Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries, announced that Renfrew County has been selected to host the Ontario Winter Games in March 2022. Minister MacLeod was introduced by her colleague the Honourable John Yakabuski, MPP for Renfrew—Nipissing—Pembroke and Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry. Above Minister MacLeod and Minister Yakabuski participate in the meeting on YouTube.
Minister MacLeod announced the Province would invest $1 million towards the games as the County prepares to host more than 3,500 athletes, managers and officials participating in 27 sports, along with many more spectators. She estimated the economic spin-off for the local economy will be $5 million.
“This is tremendous news for Renfrew County. We all know what we have to offer here and will now have the opportunity to showcase it to the entire country. I believe hosting the Games will result in an increase in tourism not only during the games but long after they are completed. I want to congratulate the County of Renfrew and thank Minister MacLeod for choosing us,” said Minister Yakabuski.
In congratulating Renfrew County on its successful bid to host the province’s athletes, Minister MacLeod said, “The Games will boost the local economy and help with the recovery from COVID-19, while strengthening our sports and tourism sectors, and leaving a lasting legacy on the County of Renfrew and its municipalities. I am looking forward to supporting our high-performing athletes as they return to the podium and showcase what our province truly has to offer.”
Debbie Robinson, having taken her oath as Warden for the County of Renfrew at the start of the County Council meeting, said, “Renfrew County is pleased to have been chosen as the home for the 2022 Ontario Winter Games; we are very excited to have the opportunity to welcome some of the best athletes in the country. Preparations for this event will involve the collaboration and support from all our municipalities and the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan as partners…. This is a wonderful opportunity for Renfrew County to showcase all that we have to offer.” She added that she looks forward to working with Games Ontario to ensure the event is successful and rewarding.
The media release from the County of Renfrew states that the games will assist in developing [the participants] athletic skills to advance to national and international competitions. The games are expected to give a boost to our local economy, with an increase of visitors and volunteers, and will create opportunities that will leave a legacy for communities by supporting sports, recreation and education. Support from Local Municipalities, the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan, Garrison Petawawa and private sector partners will be key to ensuring success. The Province of Ontario will be providing logistical support and financial support for costs such as hosting and feeding the athletes, transportation, promotion, facility and equipment rentals and more.
Barber,M.County of Renfrew(2020,Dec.15) Renfrew County Selected to Host 2022 Ontario Winter Games [media release]