Winnipeg to host 2017 Canada Summer Games
Winnipeg has been named as host city for the 2017 Canada Summer Games.
The announcement was made Friday afternoon at The Forks by Mayor Sam Katz.
"Our city has a long history of providing first-class hospitality to athletes and visitors during large sporting and cultural events. I am confident that the 2017 Canada Summer Games will be no exception," Katz said.
"In addition to contributing an estimated $130 million to our local economy, the 2017 Games will also give Winnipeg athletes the opportunity to compete in front of a hometown audience."
In 2011, Halifax hosted the two-week event and generated more than $130 million worth of economic activity.
Katz said he hopes the games will do the same for Winnipeg.
"To have all of the athletes, their coaches and also their families to be here … that will bring a phenomenal economic impact for the city and the province," said Katz.
Premier Greg Selinger said Manitoba is up to the challenge.
"We can put on a first-class show with our excellent volunteers and our world-class facilities," said Selinger.
The City of Winnipeg will invest $3 million over the next four years, with more than $10 million each coming from the provincial and federal governments.
Hosting duties for the games — a high-level multi-sport event for amateur athletes that is held every two years in Canada, alternating between the winter and summer events — are rotated among the provinces and it is Manitoba's turn in 2017.
Winnipeg was selected to host the games after Brandon lost out in its bid in January, and no other community stepped forward.
No province has ever forfeited its turn.
The 2017 Summer Games have special significance, as they will be held during Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations and mark the 50th anniversary of the games.
About 20,000 visitors are expected to attend the games.
The city has begun the initial groundwork for the games. Nineteen potential venues have been identified and a host society will be in place by August 2013.
Manitoba last played host to the Canada Summer Games in 1997, when the games were held in Brandon.