Boating Ontario Partners with Parks Canada on Spring Meetings

Over the past few weeks the Boating Ontario Association team has been on the road criss-crossing the waterways from the North Channel all the way down to Toronto Harbour. Some meetings were held in partnership with Parks Canada to update marina operators and members. While high water levels were on the forefront of these discussions, there were many issues discussed and much information shared.

Parks Canada shared the latest figures on the number of FREE lock permits to date that have been given out - over 24,000 at last count. With boat trip traffic expected to be up 30% and reminiscent of the 2004 season. Two new Twitter accounts have been launched, @TSWBoaterInfo and @RideauBoatInfo to provide real time updates on lock wait times and availability of transient dock at marinas along the waterways. Boating Ontario will be reposting and promoting both these twitter accounts to ensure members who post are shared.

For their part, Boating Ontario CEO, Janet O’Connell and Marketing Manager, Cynthia Hodgson updated attendees on the tools available to them via BoatingOntario.ca, DiscoverBoating.ca/tools and much more. Ms. O’Connell reported on the advocacy work done as part of the NMMA Canada “Day on the Hill” in Ottawa. Boating Ontario was at the table with fellow Marine Trade Associations and the NMMA staff for this national recreational boating advocacy day and meetings with several MPP’s and Transport Canada staff.

Ms. O’Connell also provided stats on the latest NMMA Economic Impact Study for 2016, a joint project with Boating Ontario and the other MTA’s across the country. With recreational boating toping the $10 billion-dollar mark in Canada, O’Connell was pleased the impact on tourism was also measured in the report. “Boaters spent $7.4 billion while on boating trips. Canadians spend an average of $400 per trip, while foreign visitors spend $2,750 per trip was data captured in the report. This is an important figure when we sit down with our local governments and tourism partners. We will be making the entire report available to our members through the Members Only section of BoatingOntario.ca later this month.” stated O’Connell.

This year Boating Ontario will also be hosting and posting on-line webinars for members outside of the areas where meetings were held to participated. “We will host live webinars over the coming weeks and months and post a video version for members to watch when their schedules permit. We recognize that time is critical during launch season and we want to thank the many members who did take the time to come out. Making sure this information is accessible to all members is a priority for us” said O’Connell.

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