Two children holding flags with a person wearing a moose costume in between

“The thrill of competition within the spirit of cooperation…”1

During the warm summer month of August 1981, Thunder Bay captured the nation's attention as the host city for the Jeux Canada Games. Thunder Bay was the first city in Ontario to stage the Games, and organizers of the event were committed to ensuring that the City would stage the best Games ever held. This exhibit is a journey through the A man standing at a podium wearing a suit with flags and a banner behind colossal task of planning the Jeux Canada Games. Four years of tireless effort were required to ensure the success of the Games - from ensuring that funding and administration were put in place, to overseeing the development of recreational facilities, to promoting the Games to the nation. Ultimately, the Games left behind a noticeable human legacy in Thunder Bay, one that continues to be recognized throughout the city to this very day.

Ready, Set, Go! Planning and preparing for a legendary event

A group of people sitting around a table ready to sign a paper







Let the Games Begin! The Jeux Canada Games and amateur sport in Canada

Two children standing on either side of a brown moose mascot holding flags







Investing in the Future: Recreational facilities in the City of Thunder Bay

A coloured map of the location of venues across the city







Getting the Show on the Road: Media and publicity for the Jeux Canada Games

A cut out of a media release for the 1981 games, with red lettering







A Lasting Legacy: The impact of the Games on the community

A man holding a branded tire with the Canada Games logo







About this exhibit

This exhibit was created using information and graphic material belonging to the City of Thunder Bay Archives and the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame.

Archival Series used in this exhibit include:

  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Administration, 1977 - 1982 (Series 417)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Publications, 1970 - 1981 (Series 418)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Communications and Media Coverage, 1978 - 1982 (Series 419)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Background Information to the Games, 1978 - 1981 (Series 421)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Preparations, Policies and Procedures, 1970 - 1981 (Series 422)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Facilities, 1963 - 1982 (Series 427)
  • Jeux Canada Games 1981: Fundraising, 1978 - 1981 (Series 429)

Every precaution has been taken to ensure that copyright has been cleared for images used in this exhibit. If you have any concerns, please contact the City of Thunder Bay Archives.

1 Excerpt adapted from a slideshow transcript. City of Thunder Bay Archives (TBA 8024-02).


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