Here’s another edition of our Weekly Activity Report from the Sault Ste. Marie Economic Development Corporation (SSMEDC):
· Last week, officials from Ringette Canada travelled to the community to visit various sports and accommodations facilities. They also met with folks from Tourism Sault Ste. Marie, which is looking to make a bid on the 2018 National Ringette Championships. The annual event attracts around 1,000 participants – plus hundreds more parents and fans – and generates an economic impact of nearly $1 million in direct visitor spending for the host community. Sault Ste. Marie is competing for the hosting rights with four other cities across the country. While here, the Ringette Canada officials toured and evaluated local arenas, hotels and other facilities. A main activity of Tourism Sault Ste. Marie is to bid on and support major sports tournaments and conferences that draw visitors. Between 2010 and 2014, these events generated $17.5 million in direct visitor spending.
· The Bow Lake Wind Farm north of the Sault is now operational. Capable of powering 15,000 homes, the initiative is a joint venture of the Batchewana First Nation and BluEarth Renewables. During the construction phase, 180 workers were employed on the project, and dozens of local suppliers – including steel for the wind towers from Essar Steel Algoma – were used. Given the economic benefits, the SSMEDC worked with the proponents on helping the project move forward. In 2014, BluEarth manager Bryan Tripp remarked: “The SSMEDC has been incredibly helpful. Its staff assisted us with public consultation and information sessions, and they helped connect us with people and organizations throughout the region. The SSMEDC has been very community-minded, and its support has been – and continues to be – greatly appreciated.”
· The SSMEDC is inviting the public to register for Bridges to Better Business. At the event, attendees will hear from business owners on the obstacles and opportunities they have faced. Featuring guest speakers and an entrepreneur panel, the forum is taking place October 22 at Grand Gardens (Downtown) from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. A complimentary meal will be served. There is no charge to attend, but participants must register and are asked to bring two non-perishable food items. To register, visit www.cognitoforms.com/SaultSteMarieEconomicDevelopmentCorporation1/_2015BridgesToBetterBusinessKnockingDownBarriers. The SSMEDC receives funding from the Provincial Government to hold the annual event. This year’s forum is also supported by the Business Development Bank of Canada, Community Development Corporation and Startup Sault.