Ottawa

Ottawa 2017 party planners get $5M boost from feds

Ottawa's effort to become the place to be on Canada's 150th birthday next year is getting a $5-million boost from the federal government to help stage some of the signature events announced over the past few months.

Ottawa's share to come from $210M federal fund

Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly and Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson exchange commemorative pins after Joly announced $5 million in funding for Ottawa's 2017 birthday bash. (Andrew Foote/CBC)

Ottawa's effort to become the place to be on Canada's 150th birthday next year is getting a $5-million boost from the federal government to help stage some of the signature events announced over the past few months.

Canadian Heritage Minister Mélanie Joly, whose department has budgeted $210 million for celebrations across the country next year, made the announcement across the street from Parliament Hill Thursday morning.

"We are proud to be supporting the great efforts that Mayor [Jim] Watson and his team have been involved [in] to make sure Ottawa 2017 a success," she said.

Joly and Hull-Aylmer MP Greg Fergus had announced earlier this year another $5 million to set up a "mosaiculture" plant art show at Gatineau's Jacques-Cartier Park for 100 days between July 1 and Oct. 9, 2017, as well as similar events in capital cities across Canada.

Public, private funding

Guy Laflamme, executive director of Ottawa 2017, said the new funding will supplement sponsorships from CIBC, Bell and other companies to fund some of the main events organizers are working on.

Laflamme singled out an underground sound and light show at the future Lyon light rail station, a July 2 picnic on the Alexandra Bridge over the Ottawa River and this week's announcement of four days to mark the 125th anniversary of the Stanley Cup as some of the events being funded.

The City of Ottawa is contributing a total of $6 million to the celebrations between 2015 to 2017, while the provincial government is setting aside money in its 2016 budget to partner with municipalities, but hasn't revealed a specific dollar amount.

Ottawa 2017 is not saying how much marquee sponsors such as Bell and CIBC are kicking in.

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