Feds hand over $1.1 million in contributions to tourism projects in Milton, Oakville

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Published July 4, 2024 at 10:07 am

Kelso Waterpark funding tourism milton oakville crawford lake

A new waterpark at Kelso and a holographic experience at Crawford Lake are among the tourism projects in Halton that received federal funding.

The announcement was made by Milton MP Adam van Koeverden and Filomena Tassi, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).

“Crawford Lake and Kelso Lake are cornerstones of our community here in Milton, with people travelling from all over to experience the region’s natural beauty for both sport and leisure,” said van Koeverden.

“Supporting the Conservation Halton Foundation and Conservation Halton as they enhance the offerings at these must-see destinations will ensure our natural landscape can be enjoyed by tourists and locals alike for years to come in ways that are sustainable to the lakes and the conservation areas around them.”

Van Koeverden highlighted how an increase in tourists leads to spillover benefits into communities, creating jobs and stimulating local economies, while announcing more than $1.1 million in federal support for six projects in the area.

Conservation Halton plans to install a holographic immersive experience at the Crawford Lake Visitor Centre. With $180,000 in support from the federal government, this exhibit will highlight Crawford Lake as an important natural site.

Opening next fall, this immersive experience is expected to attract more than 10,000 tourists annually from students to nature enthusiasts to the region.

Conservation Halton is also receiving a $200,000 investment to install an inflatable waterpark at the Kelso Conservation Area Park. This attraction is expected to draw more than 8,500 annual visitors and open the door for further investment opportunities into the park, ensuring its conservation efforts can be enjoyed by all for years to come.

“Conservation Halton’s parks are destinations for outdoor recreation and learning that attract more than a million visitors,” said Barb Veale, Conservation Halton’s acting CEO.

“Today’s announcement of new funding for two of these popular park destinations is a step towards creating even more vibrant, prosperous and resilient communities.”

Here are the other projects receiving funding:

Downtown Oakville Business Improvement Area, $58,809: The Downtown Oakville BIA enhanced its second annual GLO DTO festival in March 2024. The festival enhancements included an interactive art attraction, which contributed to drawing thousands of visitors to the area.

The Heart of Ontario: Hamilton Halton Brant, $200,000: To implement its three-year strategic, green economy, tourism growth plan. This includes providing training and supports for tourism operators to develop experiences, and a four-day shoulder season culinary event.

Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, $500,000: To enhance the historic Council House, built in 1882, allowing it to re-open and provide a restored, accessible and safe indoor cultural gathering space where Anishinaabe culture can be shared with locals and tourists alike.

Visit Oakville, $15,000: To enhance its Taste of Oakville culinary event by engaging more restaurants and increasing marketing to drive awareness, which grew participation during the 2024 edition.

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