THUNDER BAY – SPORTS – The Ontario government is providing the City of Thunder Bay with up to $1.4 million in funding to host the 2024 Ontario Winter Games.
The 2024 Ontario Winter Games is estimated to generate an economic impact in excess of $5 million by hosting up to an estimated 3,500 participants, including athletes from ages 12-18, coaches, managers and officials to support in upwards of 27 sports which may include alpine skiing, artistic swimming, speed skating and wheelchair basketball.
“Ontario is home to some of the best athletes in the world, and our government is proud to support our rising stars as they go for gold,” says Minister MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries. “Investing in these Games supports the province’s double bottom line – enriching our pride of people and pride of place by helping athletes pursue excellence right here at home, while boosting tourism and the economic prosperity of Thunder Bay and surrounding communities.”
Hosting the Games will support local businesses by attracting more visitors to hotels, restaurants, local attractions and shops. It will also create more sport and recreation opportunities for the local community and its athletes, creating a lasting legacy for the City of Thunder Bay.
“Our government is fulfilling our promise to invest in the North and bolster a tourism industry hit hard by the pandemic,” says Minister Rickford, Minister of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry, and Minister of Indigenous Affairs. “By supporting the Ontario Winter Games, we are showing the sporting world that world-class events can be held right here in Northwestern Ontario. These events will give the region, and its tourism and hospitality sector a well-needed economic boost.”
“We would like to extend our thanks to the Ontario government and Minister Lisa MacLeod for selecting Thunder Bay to host the 2024 Ontario Winter Games,” states Mayor Bill Mauro. “This will be the first time these games have been held in Thunder Bay since 1974. We look forward to welcoming the best young athletes from across Ontario to our city and providing them with our exceptional Northwestern Ontario hospitality. I would also like to thank our local bid committee for all of their efforts to see these games ‘Return to the North’. It was a privilege to work with this fine group of community volunteers and city staff.”