War of 1812 meeting updates business on opportunities

By RTT Staff

Last week the Town of Amherstburg’s Recreation and Culture Department held a meeting urging business owners to jump on board the War of 1812 celebration boat.

“We don’t want anyone to miss out on such a important event,” said Jessie Harmon War of 1812 Bi Centennial Commemoration Project Coordinator in a phone interview.

The Government of Canada recognizes the War of 1812 as a defining moment in the history of our nation; Canada would not exist had the American invasions of 1812-1814 not been defeated. The combined heroic efforts of the British army and navy, English- and French-speaking militia volunteers, and First Nations allies to repel the invasions tell the story of the Canada we know today: an independent and free country in a constitutional monarchy with its own parliamentary system. The end of the War laid the foundation for Confederation and the cornerstones of many of our political institutions, in addition to the start of two centuries of peaceful relations and cooperation between Canada and the United States. The War was also instrumental in creating Canada’s military; the origins of some modern reserve regiments date back to this time.

The Department of Canadian Heritage has the responsibility to lead and coordinate initiatives to commemorate the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 on behalf of the Government of Canada. To support the Department in this important role, the Federal Secretariat, Bicentennial of the War of 1812 has been established.

The Town has invested roughly $100,000 since 2008 in anticipation of the 200th anniversary.

The Bi-Centennial will have a huge impact on the local economy. Nearly 50,000 visitors are expected to attend the Roots to Boots Festival in August 3-5.

Anne Rota, Manager of Tourism and Culture said the average person would spend $23 during day visits compared to $76 per person for overnight visits. Which works out to a potential $1,150,000 over three days in the community.

This is the largest Bi-Centennial event with Fort Malden National Historic Site being a major partner.

The Bi-Centennial celebrations will have something for everyone, from the history buff and roaming retirees to the children attending a “major” rock concert held at Fort Malden.

Also, three Legacy Projects will be unveiled in 2012.

What will the Bi-Centennial celebrations leave behind?

Harmon and Rota believe, along with providing stimulus in the local economy, the majority of Canadian will recognize the War of 1812 as a defining moment in the history of our nation, reinforcing civic pride.

Also the significant legacy investments and infrastructure improvements to national cultural assets.

 

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