Province Commits More Than $500,000 to Support Local Tourism Initiatives

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A tourism boost for Windsor-Essex and parts of southwestern Ontario.

The provincial government has announced the region will receive $532,000 to help drive tourism in the area.

The funding announcement was made Monday afternoon in front of the Peace Fountain by Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries Minister Lisa MacLeod.  

She was joined by Windsor Mayor Drew Dilkens, Essex County Warden Gary McNamara and Chatham-Kent Leamington MPP Rick Nicholls.

MacLeod says $350,000 of the funding will be used for marketing.

She says the tourism sector is trying to rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We're trying to say today and throughout the summer that if you're going to your local restaurant for example or your local brewery or you stay at a hotel, that there are stringent rigorous protocols in place for the health and safety and well being of the patron as well as the worker and we're trying to demonstrate that," says MacLeod.        

She adds the province is trying to reinvigorate its $36-billion tourism industry.

"What I'm hoping is that people will start to reacquaint themselves with their own communities," says MacLeod.  "If they haven't been down to the water front in Windsor, come on down.  If they haven't been to some of the local attractions that are actually open again, maybe they should consider coming back downtown or out to a winery if they're able to do so."        

The government is also providing $182,000 to five local festivals including the Windsor International Film Festival and Bluesfest. 

MacLeod says the festivals were selected following an application process.