The Forks, Churchill receiving federal dollars for tourism support

Two Manitoba landmarks will be receiving a combined $600,000 as the province looks to get tourism dollars flowing again.

The Forks Renewal Corporation is getting the bulk of the money — half-a-million-dollars — and the Churchill Chamber of Commerce will receive the rest to offset some of the financial fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

At The Forks, the money is excepted to stabilize operations and assist with safety measures, according to a news release.

Read more:
The Forks reopens amid coronavirus pandemic – with restrictions

Meantime, 50 businesses and 80 staff members in Churchill will benefit from the funds.

“Manitoba is full of vibrant cities, towns and villages, beautiful natural attractions, diverse cultures and a proud history,” Daniel Vandal, MP for Saint Boniface-Saint Vital and minister of northern affairs said in a news release, noting the tourism sector, in particular, has been hit hard by the pandemic.

“For years, both The Forks and Churchill have helped to not only attract visitors to our province, but have also served as important economic drivers for our tourism industry.”

The Forks began a gradual reopening in mid-May after shutting down in March.

In a typical year, the government says The Forks brings in over four million visitors and generates around $190 million in economic benefits.

Read more:
Coronavirus pandemic leaves Churchill’s tourism sector ‘vulnerable,’ mayor says

Churchill, which is a popular destination for seeing polar bears and northern lights, attracts around 530,000 people each year.

The funds are part of a $98-million federal package to support businesses across Western Canada, which the government says has already been accessed by over 1,760 businesses.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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