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Thunder Bay to Host Several Sport Championship Events in 2013

December 20, 2012 – Thunder Bay will host nine provincial and national sport championships in 2013 that will attract out-of-town participants and visitors to the city. The championship events highlight a number of sports including cross country skiing, curling, soccer, baseball, and diving.

2013 Events:

Jan. 3 - 6  
Haywood NorAm/ Ontario Cup #1
World Junior &U23 Trials/World Senior Sprint Trials
Lappe Nordic Centre 

Feb. 23 - 24  
Ontario University (OUA) Cross Country Ski Championships
Lappe Nordic Centre

Apr. 8 - 12  
All Ontario PeeWee AAA Hockey Championships
Fort William Gardens

Apr. 8 - 14  
Canadian Masters Curling Championships
Port Arthur Curling Club  

May 3 - 5   
Canadian Lifeguard Emergency Response Championships
Canada Games Complex 

July 12 - 14  
Junior Elite Diving National Championships
Canada Games Complex   

July 16 - 20  
Canadian Girls All Stars U-15/U-16 Soccer Championships
Fort William Stadium / Chapples Soccer Park

July 31 - Aug. 8 Canadian Senior Little League Championships
Baseball Central 

Nov. 25 - 30  
The Dominion Curling Club Championships
Fort William Curling Club  

According to the Canadian Sports Tourism Alliance modeling tool – STEAM (Sport Tourism Economic Assessment Model), it’s estimated that these nine events will bring over $4 million into the community throughout the year.

A breakdown by event shows the Canadian Girls All Stars Soccer Championships in July will generate $1.16 million while the Haywood NorAm World Junior/U23 Cross Country Ski event in early January is expected to bring in just over $600,000 for the four-day event. The spending generated in a community is the growing value placed on sport tourism by municipalities and communities across Canada, who competitively bid to host these championships offer by provincial, national and international sports governing bodies.

"Our local economy receives a boost due to the spending by participants and spectators involved especially local hotels, restaurants and retail businesses,” said Mayor Keith Hobbs, City of Thunder Bay.  “These events would not be possible without the commitment and passion of local host committees and their volunteers who attract these sports visitors to our community ensuring their stay is enjoyable and memorable,” Hobbs noted.

These sports events also create media attention that further promotes what Thunder Bay and the region has to offer as an outdoor destination with urban connectivity. Visitors also find value in the cultural, historical and outdoor experiences offered in our community.
“The City of Thunder Bay continues to position itself as a leading sport tourism destination, forging partnerships with local sports groups to stimulate sport tourism growth and the associated economic impact for our community”, said Paul Pepe, Tourism Manager for the City of Thunder Bay. “Our impressive air connectivity through the Thunder Bay International Airport plays a key role in attracting events.”

With the development of Baseball Central and Port Arthur Stadium, and upgrades to Canada Games Complex, Fort William Stadium and the Thunder Bay Community Tennis Centre, the City of Thunder Bay continues to commit resources to support and work with local sports organizations and help bring championship events to the City.

The Can-Am Police-Fire Games in 2016 is an example of that with about 1200 athletes expected to compete in 30 sports at 25 venues making these games the largest multi-sport event hosted in the city since the 1981 Canada Summer Games.

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Contact: John Cameron, Tourism Development Officer, 625-3231