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City seeks nominations for Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards

10:32 am in Festival and Event Industry, Industry News, Ottawa News

The City of Ottawa will present its first annual Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards at the Ottawa Immigration Forum at City Hall on Monday, October 1, 2012. The forum, organized by the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership (OLIP), will focus on the theme of “valuing and leveraging the contributions of immigrants for greater prosperity and vibrancy.”

Nominations for local immigrant entrepreneurs should be submitted by e-mail to [email protected] no later than September 14, 2012. The submission should include the nominee’s contact information, their year of immigration to Canada, their current number of employees, a description of their business products or services, and a concise summary of no more than 500 words of the entrepreneur’s contribution to business development and the local economy. Two references should also be named, with contact information provided, who can corroborate the claims of the nominee.

The new Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards are an opportunity to celebrate the valuable contributions of immigrant business people in our City and to inspire and encourage other immigrants in Ottawa to consider starting or operating businesses here.

Submissions will be evaluated by a panel of eight business and community leaders who are looking for inspirational stories about individuals who have come to Ottawa and built businesses of all sizes.

Submissions will be evaluated in the following entrepreneur business categories:

  • Youth business entrepreneurs (under 35 years old)
  • Women entrepreneurs
  • Innovation-oriented enterprises
  • Social enterprises (with a social, environmental or cultural mandate as the primary concern of the business)
  • Fast-growth enterprises

In their deliberations, the panel will consider candidates’ track record of job creation, business mentorship, and other ways they have contributed to the development of the local economy.

The Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership (OLIP) was founded in October 2009 by the City of Ottawa and Local Agencies Serving Immigrants (LASI). The partnership is funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada with the mandate of improving local capacity to attract, settle and integrate immigrants.

For more information about the award nominations, please contact the nomination coordinator at:
613-580-2424, ext. 16663

City looks to connect its biking routes

2:50 pm in Industry News, Ottawa News

Ottawa\’s new cycling \’links\’ are making it a leader in connection cycling facilities

Story and photo by Laura Meuller,


By the end of this month, there should be a ramp allowing people to wheel their bike up beside the stairs to get up the hill to cross Hartwell Locks.

It’s a small, simple addition, and although it has taken eight years to make it happen, it will allow thousands of cyclists to use the locks to cross the Rideau Canal, particularly during the National Capital Commission’s Sunday Bike Days.

It’s just one of thousands of small projects completed each year to tweak conditions to make life easier for cyclists in Ottawa, says Robin Bennett, the city’s project manager of cycling programs.

Read more:  City looks to connect its biking routes

Host Committee Adds Capital Flavour to the 2012 JUNO Awards Celebrations

1:19 pm in Community News, Industry News, Ottawa News


Le français suivra l\’anglais.

The 2012 JUNO Host Committee today announced that they will add their “Capital” mark to the festivities during JUNO Week. The Host Committee, comprised of representatives of the Capital’s private and public sectors, is adding to the buzz, and offering activities that showcase the Capital and its musical talent.

“Canada’s Capital Region is a place where we showcase Canadian excellence and achievements for all to enjoy,” said Marie Lemay, Chief Executive Officer of the National Capital Commission. “This is the second time we’ve had the opportunity to host the best talent from our Canadian music industry, and we’re looking forward to celebrating their accomplishments with a full week of diverse and dynamic activities.”

“The City of Ottawa is proud to welcome music fans and industry professionals from across the country and around the world,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “It’s an honour to host Canada’s incredible music scene for one full week in the nation’s capital, and I want to encourage our residents to participate in the many activities taking place, and wish all of our visitors a fantastic time.”

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Canadian Tulip Festival announces change of venue to community business locations, new Tulip Legacy initiatives

4:36 pm in Festival News, News Release

The Canadian Tulip Festival, which celebrates its 60th Edition this Spring from May 4th – 21st, today updated its stakeholders and supporters on plans to facilitate long-term sustainability, enlarge program offerings for the visiting public and expand community engagement.

Change to community venues

The Festival announced that future programming and pageantry will be distributed throughout community locations instead of being concentrated at Major’s Hill Park, and will be done in collaboration with Business Improvement Area (“BIA”) organizations wherever possible.

“When the Board of Trade created the Festival in 1953 the idea was to animate the Capital in a way that created more economic value for local business,” said David E. Luxton, volunteer Chair and financial patron of the Canadian Tulip Festival. “I’ve been pleased to support the Tulip Festival for this reason, having seen independent studies showing that it generates tens of millions of dollars in economic value to the local economy every year. It makes sense therefore to see the Festival migrate to an operating model that creates even more value for local business by driving visitor traffic to their locations with programming attractions.”

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Ontario\’s tourism welcome doesn\’t travel to Ottawa

2:56 pm in Festival and Event Industry, Industry News, Tourism Industry

18 visitor centres, but none here

By Mark Sutcliffe, Ottawa Citizen

Ontario has 18 Travel Information Centres, placed strategically across the province and at which, according to the government\’s website, \”friendly staff\” will \”help you customize an Ontario itinerary as unique as you are.\”

At these centres, tourists can pick up brochures, get answers to their questions and even book hotel rooms. \”We are travel experts familiar with local attractions, but also knowledgeable about all that our province has to offer,\” the tourism website says.

Read more: Ontario\’s tourism welcome doesn\’t travel to Ottawa


3:24 pm in Festival News, Festivals in the News

On February 18, ICC celebrated it’s 7th birthday around Ottawa downtown. Friends and families were heading to Ottawa downtown area for last day gazing Winterlude ice sculptures and skating at new City Hall’s new Rink of Dreams.

Read more:  Indonesian Canadian Congress (ICC) Celebrates 7th Birthday at Winterlude Ottawa Downtown 2012

Goodbye OCRI; hello Invest Ottawa: Organization has new name, mandate

9:50 am in Festival and Event Industry, Industry News, Tourism Industry

As the #3 industry in the Capital, it is good to see that the tourism sector will have representation at Invest Ottawa.

Vito Pilieci, The Ottawa Citizen

After three decades of advocating on behalf of the technology industry in the nation’s capital, the Ottawa Centre for Regional Innovation is expanding its scope with a new mandate and name.

As of Tuesday morning, the organization will be known as Invest Ottawa, dropping its familiar OCRI acronym and taking on lobby efforts for other areas of economic development including travel and tourism, film and TV and non-technical small business creation.

To help with the expanded focus, new spots have been created on the organization’s board, for Ottawa Tourism and another for an advocate from the TV and film industry, and Mayor Jim Watson has been added as the board’s co-chair.

Full story: Hello Invest Ottawa

Making the Capital the national hub of Canada’s 150th celebrations

3:56 pm in Festival News, News Release

The National Capital Commission (NCC), the City of Ottawa and the Ville de Gatineau announced today that they will work together to ensure the Capital region is the national hub of the 150th anniversary of Confederation celebrations.

At their tripartite meeting, Marie Lemay, Chief Executive Officer of the NCC, Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa and Marc Bureau, Mayor of Gatineau, agreed that they will meet regularly to share information and to establish a host committee environment that will facilitate the local planning of the celebrations in Canada’s Capital in 2017 – the anniversary year of Confederation.

“The Capital is a place that belongs to all Canadians and an important milestone, like the 150th, will need a hub to anchor the celebrations that will take place in communities across the country to celebrate our past and dream of our future,” said Marie Lemay, Chief Executive Officer of the NCC. “The NCC has a strong track record of bringing together municipalities and partners to leverage resources and ensure a higher impact for every dollar invested to celebrate Canada, our history, our identity, and our culture and values.”

“Our Nation’s Capital should own 2017 as the premier destination for tourists to visit from across Canada and around the world, which is why earlier this year I announced the creation of the City of Ottawa Taskforce on Canada’s 150th co-chaired by Councillors Rainer Bloess and Katherine Hobbs,” said Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa. “Working together, with the Ville de Gatineau and the NCC, we need to aggressively pursue national and international conferences, sporting and cultural events and conventions and trade shows that can all be a part of the 150th celebration of Confederation.”

“The Destination Gatineau plan provides an opportunity for the City to develop a large-scale project that will turn the spotlight on the many heritage and historical sites spanning several kilometres along the banks of the Ottawa River and this, as early as 2017. These modern recreational and cultural infrastructures will contribute to making Gatineau, as well as the National Capital Region, an international tourist destination,” stated Gatineau Mayor Marc Bureau.

Acknowledging their respective projects and committees, the NCC CEO, the Mayor of Ottawa and the Mayor of Gatineau, added that the celebrations in 2017 will be a regular item on the agenda of their future tripartite discussions.

Council approves action plan for arts, heritage and culture

1:32 pm in Community News, Festival and Event Industry, Industry News

Today City Council approved a six-year action plan for arts, heritage and culture. The renewed plan builds on Ottawa’s strengths, reflects its unique and authentic identity, aims to build pride in Ottawa as a vibrant, cultural city, and sets out a path aimed at leveraging opportunity.

“Arts, culture and heritage are about remembering where we come from, celebrating who we are today and dreaming about what we can be tomorrow,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “These will continue to be the keys to our success, especially as we prepare to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017.”

“The renewal process brought together the strongest diversity of representation and participation ever for municipal cultural planning purposes in Ottawa,” said Councillor Mark Taylor, Chair of the Community and Protective Services Committee. “The plan will close cultural gaps, meet emerging needs and continue to improve cultural investment in the City of Ottawa.”

The plan includes four strategies:

  • Celebrate Ottawa’s unique cultural identity and provide access to culture for all
  • Preserve and develop cultural and creative places and spaces
  • Get the word out about Ottawa’s vibrant local culture and unique identity
  • Invest in local culture and build cultural leadership

The process brought together First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals and communities, representatives of the Anglophone and Francophone cultural mosaic, diverse citizenry from rural, suburban and urban neighbourhoods, new Canadians and arts, heritage, festival and fair representatives.

A recent economic study reported that Ottawa-Gatineau’s cultural industry (non-profit and for-profit) represented approximately 4.1 per cent of GDP, totalling $1.98 billion. In 2010, attendance and participation in local cultural activity totalled 4.1 million, and 21,861 volunteers provided 519,755 volunteer hours (valued at $9.1 million) to the local cultural sector.

Skate Safe and wear your helmet during Winterlude

10:18 am in Festival News, News Release

Source: Press Release

The City of Ottawa, the National Capital Commission (NCC) and State Farm®, sponsor of the Skate Safe program, have teamed up once again to make an Ottawa winter tradition more fun for everyone through the Skate Safe program. The Skate Safe tent officially opened on Saturday morning on the Rideau Canal Skateway at the State Farm Zone at Concord.

Visitors to the Skate Safe tent will get assistance with helmet fittings, tips on helmet use and a free 15-minute “tips and tricks” skating session from staff and volunteers from Ottawa Public Health (OPH), Ottawa’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services department and ThinkFirst. The tent will be open Saturdays and Sundays during Winterlude, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., until February 20.

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