Park to be built in honour of Anne of Green Gables author
Governments invest $600K in project that will include statue, trail and social media network
A park in honour of Anne of Green Gables author Lucy Maud Montgomery will be built in Cavendish, P.E.I.
The project, which includes a statue and a literary trail that will connect and lead visitors to L.M. Montgomery experiences, was announced at a news conference on Wednesday.
The federal and provincial governments are providing more than $600,000 to the resort municipality of Stanley Bridge, Hope River, Bayview, Cavendish and North Rustico for the project.
The federal government is contributing $412,400, invested through ACOA's Innovative Communities Fund.
Money from gas tax
The province is providing a grant of $80,000 through the Department of Rural and Regional Development and $80,000 through the Department of Economic Development and Tourism.
The gas tax program will be providing $60,000 through the Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy.
The project will also include the creation of a network of experts, advocates, and social media influencers who will help share their L.M. Montgomery tourism experiences on various social media platforms to people around the world.
Drawing tourists from around the world
While the area is already home to many tourist destinations related to Montgomery and Anne, the resort municipality's mayor, Matthew Jelley, thinks the community can always do more to attract people.
"As tourism becomes more and more competitive, we have to make sure that we are really drilling down and serving those people. So for the Anne loyalists, or for the L.M. Montgomery super fans, we want to be drawing them from all over the world," Jelley said.
"The reality is, in Ontario there are areas that claim time in L.M. Montgomery's life as well, and we need to make sure that we stay firmly established as the most significant connection to her and to her works."
The project is currently in the design phase and Jelley expects tenders to go out in about six weeks. He hopes to see the park and statue officially unveiled this summer.
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With files from Sarah MacMillan