Sudbury loses in 3rd bid for Canada Summer Games

The city was beat out by Niagara for the two-week showcase of the country's best young athletes. But those involved in the local bid say they've laid the groundwork to go after other national sporting events.

Sudbury had previously bid for the 1981 and 2001 Canada Summer Games

Sudbury Mayor Brian Bigger and some city councillors were on-hand to wait for the announcement of the 2021 Canada Summer Games host. (Erik White/CBC)

Niagara has beaten out Sudbury and will host the 2021 Canada Summer Games.

The announcement was made early Thursday afternoon in Toronto, while several dozen people were watching and waiting at Science North in the northeastern Ontario city.

Ottawa and the Waterloo Region were also vying for the two-week long multi-sport event.

This was Sudbury's third try for the Canada Summer Games after bidding for the 1981 event and putting in a joint bid with North Bay for the 2001 competition. 

"Although today's outcome isn't what we had hoped for, I know that this experience has transformed Greater Sudbury for the better, leaving us with a new understanding with what is possible for our community," Mayor Brian Bigger told the crowd at the IMAX theatre.

Bid committee co-chair Darren Stinson said just going through the process will set Sudbury up for its next attempt at a national sports spectacle.

"We know what we have to do better in terms of our facilities and we know what we need to do to build that up," he said.

"We've done so much work and so much research that the next event is going to be easy for us to put together." 

'If you're not victorious in the end, you try to get them the next time'

Bid committee member and long-time Sudbury sports organizer Randy Pascal added that just trying for the Canada Games was worthwhile.

What's important now is that the city quickly picks another major event to strive for, he said.

"In many ways it's analogous to what we ask the athletes to do," said Pascal.

"You go out there and you play as hard as you can and you give everything you got and if you're not victorious in the end, well, you try to get them the next time."

Pascal said this week, a bid was put in to host the Esso Cup, the national girls midget hockey championship in 2019.

Next year, Sudbury is already set to host the equivalent tournament for boys hockey, the Telus Cup.