The city is one step closer to realizing the dream of hosting the 2021 Canada Summer games.
Mayor Jim Watson tucked the bid book into an Team Ontario knapsack on Tuesday Jan. 31, after which an excited team that included bid co-chairs Sue Holloway took the book on a five-kilometre relay along Queen Elizabeth Drive and ending at the Canada Games Council office on Riverside Drive.
Winnipeg will host this year’s Canada Summer Games in July and August.
It was last held in Sherbrooke, Que.
The capital is competing against Sudbury, Kitchener-Waterloo and the Niagara Region.
The city’s finance and economic development committee unanimously backed the bid in December. Winning the chance to host could mean millions in upgrades for facilities like the Nepean Sportsplex and the Terry Fox Athletic Facility.
It will also mean millions in revenue. When Halifax hosted the Winter Games they brought in $130 million and created 1,000 jobs.
Organizers want to highlight Ottawa’s role as a festival city.
The selection committee is making site visits on March 2, and the key is to show Ottawa has a small town feel, Holloway told Metroland Media in December.
“More than 100 stakeholders have been involved in the process of developing the Ottawa 2021 Canada Summer Games bid book, including business leaders, tourism experts and arts and culture organizations,” Watson said in a press release. “The strength of our bid rests in the overwhelming support we have received from the community, which has recognized the significant benefit for our city of hosting a sporting event of this magnitude.”
Holloway said the games are a nation-building exercise.
"What better place to have them but the capital,” she said.
Residents can join in on the excitement by registering their support at Ottawa2021.ca.