Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Festival and Event Program Generates Economic Impact

Elgin-St. Thomas Tourism has provided three separate contributions of $2000 to support local festivals and events.

The County of Elgin and City of St. Thomas encourage groups to celebrate the area’s unique culture by holding special festivals and events in the County and City. In support of this goal, the Community Festival and Event Partnership Program (CFEPP) offered contributions to community groups that take it upon themselves to organize festivals and events that are economic drivers for the community.

Successful applications for 2011 included: Port Stanley CanFest, The Elgin County Railway Museum’s Railway Nostalgia Weekend, and Culture Days at the Arts & Cookery Bank. Applicants selected best met the Elgin-St. Thomas Tourism Marketing Plan goals of increasing the number of people that visit the area, increasing the duration of their stay, and increasing the money that they spend while in Elgin-St. Thomas. Using the Province’s Tourism Regional Economic Impact Model, the County’s Economic Development Department determined that the supported events had a total economic impact of $595,677 for the Elgin and St. Thomas economy.

"Support for these type of festivals and events is extremely important," said Economic Development General Manager Alan Smith, "They generate significant economic gains by attracting visitors from outside the area who spend their dollars in Elgin and St. Thomas."

The Community Festival and Event Partnership Program has successfully been in operation for two years and Elgin-St. Thomas Tourism hopes to offer the program again in 2012.

(Photo:  Alan Smith General Manager Elgin County Economic Development, Carol Gates, Port Stanley CanFest, Sarah VanEngelen, Culture Days at The Arts & Cookery Bank, St. Thomas Mayor Heather Jackson-Chapman Absent from photo:Michael Adams, Railway Nostalgia Weekend)

Monday, 17 October 2011

Elgin County Conference Series Presents: Doing Business with the Government

Economic Development is pleased to present the third installment of the Elgin County Conference Series, Doing Business with the Government on November 23rd, 2011. This one-day seminar will give small businesses in Elgin County the opportunity to learn about the process of doing business with the government and applying for funding at the federal, provincial and municipal levels. Topics presented will include: the funding application process, funding availability, procurement and purchasing processes, and accessing the market for agricultural producers. Dynamic keynote presentations will be delivered by speakers ranging from successful business owners to ministry representatives.

Guest speakers:

Menelaos Argiropoulos, Federal Senior Procurement Consultant Stakeholder Outreach
Topic: The Federal Procurement Process

Kevin Fox, Provincial Senior Procurement Consultant Stakeholder Outreach
Topic: The Provincial Procurement Process

Sonia Beavers, Purchasing Coordinator, The County of Elgin
Topic: The Municipal Procurement Process

Grace McGartland, Chair of The Arts & Cookery Bank
Topic: Success Story: Accessing Government Funding

The Elgin Business Resource Centre
Topic: Government Funding

Dr. John Kelly, Vice President of Erie Innovation and Commercialization
Art Lawson, General Manager of SCOR EDC
Topic: Accessing the market place for Agricultural Producers

The registration fee for the seminar is $30 and includes a continental breakfast, a lunch and refreshments. For more information on Doing Business with the Government or to register please call (519) 631-1460 ext. 168 or visit:


Monday, 3 October 2011

Elgin Arts Trail Launched: Tour Promotes Local Art Attractions

The new Elgin Arts Trail that launched Thursday Sept 29th, invites visitors to discover the unique artistic treasures in Elgin-St. Thomas.

The trail was kicked-off by Elgin-St. Thomas Tourism at the Public Art Centre where Elgin County Warden Dave Mennill, St. Thomas Mayor Heather Jackson-Chapman and Elgin Business Resource Centre General Manager John Regan were on hand to support the program partnership.

"The trail will have a far-reaching effect," said Mennill. "And it will bolster tourism and business development."

Jackson-Chapman also congratulated participants for their "artistry and creativity."
The trail is a route through Elgin and St. Thomas that invites visitors to discover the exemplary visual arts attractions of the area. The program is supported by a comprehensive guide book, detailed website and signage.

Visitors to the launch toured a miniature replica of the trail that included displays from all 12 Elgin Arts Trail members.

"We look forward to a successful first year," said the County’s Tourism Development Coordinator Kathryn Russell. "The trail will serve as an economic generator for the tourism industry as well as raise the profile of local visual art attractions."

The trail guide book is available at Elgin-St. Thomas Tourism and at all participating trail locations. For more information, please visit:

(Elgin County Warden Dave Mennill, Elgin Business Resource Centre General Manager John Regan, St. Thomas Mayor Heather Jackson-Chapman)