Congratulations to Cape Croker Park, Thrive Tours, and TJ Stables for their big wins at the Ontario Tourism Resiliency Awards!

Last night at the 2021 Ontario Tourism Summit awards ceremony, these tourism trailblazers were recognized for their perseverance and determination 
to innovate and engage with partners and their communities during the last year.

Cape Croker Park is this year’s recipient of the Sustainability and Collaboration awards in the Independent Business category.
Thrive Tours is this year’s recipient of the Sustainability award in the Indigenous Tourism Operator category, Innovation award in the Marine category, and Sustainability and Innovation awards in the Resource Based Tourism category.
TJ Stables is this year’s recipient of the Innovation award in the Indigenous Tourism Operator category.

The Indigenous tourism community could not be more proud. Join the ITO team in celebrating these outstanding Indigenous tourism operators!


3 Days Remain to Apply for the $2500 Digital Transformation Grant
The objectives of the Digital Main Street (DMS) Grant Program are to provide small business owners a comprehensive plan to guide their digital transformation and provide small businesses with the digital literacy skills needed to execute a digital transformation either through a do-it-yourself approach and/or being a smart consumer when purchasing these services. Eligible costs include: 
  • Digital Marketing
  • Website Development/Redesign
  • Digital Training
  • Purchase of Software or Hardware
Applications will continue to be accepted until October 31, 2021 (or until grant funds are exhausted). Learn more about eligibility and apply here. Please note that ITO’s Indigenous Business Advisors (IBA) are here to support you in your application process. Ask an IBA at IBA@indigenoustourismontario.ca.
IBA Support Available for New Ontario Tourism Recovery Program (OTRP) Application
Applications are now open for the Ontario Tourism Recovery Program (OTRP). This $100-million program supports Ontario-based tourism businesses in the for-profit attractions, accommodations, and transportation sectors. The OTRP is a competitive, application-based grant program for historically successful, private sector tourism businesses that are significant drivers to their regional tourism economies.

Successful applicants can use funding for expenditures, such as:
  • reopening and operating expenses, including staff salaries and maintenance
  • health and safety measures to support the safety of visitors and workers
  • attracting visitors through tourism product and experience improvements and marketing.
Indigenous owned businesses do not need a CRA Business Number to apply. Please note that ITO’s Indigenous Business Advisors (IBA) are here to answer your questions, address your concerns, and help work through the eligibility and application process. For immediate support, please contact IBA@indigenoustourismontario.ca.

Full program guidelines and information about how to apply to the program are now available on the Ontario Tourism Recovery Program application pageDeadline to apply is November 10, 2021 at 11:59pm EDT.
Proof of Vaccine Posters for Businesses and Organizations
To supplement the government of Ontario’s guidance document, Proof of Vaccination posters for businesses and organizations are available for print and display: Other tools and resources, including a questions and answers document, are also available online to help businesses implement the necessary safety measures. Businesses can also contact the Stop the Spread information line at 1-888-444-3659 if they have any questions about the guidance.
A Three Fires Collaborative Quest
Are you an Ontario Tourism Business Looking to Hire?
Indigenous Tourism Ontario (ITO) in collaboration with the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) and the Ontario Tourism Education Corporation (OTEC) are accepting applications for 
A Three Fires Collaborative Quest Program – a program designed to fill critical gaps within the industry and encourage recovery and growth of the province’s tourism workforce by bringing awareness of opportunities to potential Indigenous employees.

Employer Participation
To apply for the program as an employer, you must be a tourism business in Ontario, and you must be willing to support your new employee’s training and development in collaboration with the program. Potential employees will begin their frontline training this Fall, 2021.

You will be invited to participate in the Employee to Employer Matching event taking place in Winter 2021. Hosted virtually, our online platform will allow you to schedule online interviews with potential employees, and vice-versa, to interview them for your eligible positions in 2022. Upon completion of the program, you will be eligible to receive a wage subsidy of up to 30%, with a maximum of $3,000 per employee hired.


IBA Info Night
Date: Tuesday, November 9, 2021
Time: 6:00pm

Mark your calendars! ITO will be hosting an Info Night on Facebook Live to answer Frequently Asked Questions about the Indigenous Business Advisory (IBA) program. 
We encourage our members to visit, chat, and learn about the Three Fires Collaborative Quest and how it can fill critical gaps within the industry and encourage recovery and growth of the tourism workforce in the province. Questions will be answered by an IBA Live! On November 9th, the Facebook Live stream will become available using the button below. See you then! 


A Plan to Safely Reopen Ontario
On Monday, October 25th, 2021, Ontario removed capacity limits where proof of vaccination is required. Settings like restaurants, bars, sports facilities, casinos, and indoor meeting and event spaces are now able to operate at 100% capacity as of the past Monday. The physical distancing requirement between patrons and the 2m distancing requirement between tables at restaurants and event spaces will also be removed as of Monday.  

Other business settings where proof of vaccination is currently not required will be permitted to open with no indoor capacity limits if they choose to opt-in to the proof of vaccination certificate program, otherwise, Step 3 capacity limits and physical distancing requirements will continue to apply. Please note, retail businesses will not be able to “opt-in” to the proof of vaccination certificate program – they will remain at Step 3.  Full regulations regarding ‘opt-in’ settings and requirements are available here.

From Fall 2021 to Spring 2022 the government of Ontario will continue to lift measures with the intention for all regulated measures to be lifted no later than March 28, 2022. 

To learn more about Ontario’s plan to reopen, please visit 
Ontario Releases Plan to Safely Reopen Ontario and Manage COVID-19 for the Long-Term | Ontario Newsroom 
Ontario Lifts Capacity Limits for Outdoor Organized Public Events
Ontario has removed capacity limits for outdoor organized public events, as well as for outdoor areas of fairs, exhibitions, festivals, museums, zoos, ski hills, and similar settings. Regulatory changes that were approved on Wednesday October 27th will allow these outdoor settings to operate at full capacity effective immediately as long as attendees wear masks when 2 metres physical distancing cannot be maintained. These regulations include removing the requirement that vehicles stay 2 metres apart at drive-in or drive-thru venues. Proof of vaccination will continue to be required in outdoor settings where capacity is 20,000 or more. Outdoor social gatherings will also continue to be capped at 100 people at this time. Read the full CTV News coverage here.
Government of Canada Lifts Advisory Against Non-Essential Travel
The Government of Canada has lifted its advisory against non-essential international travel that has been in place since March 2020. In it’s latest guidance, the Government is encouraging individuals to be aware that community transmission of COVID-19 continues in many countries and encourages travellers to be fully vaccinated and allow 14 days after your 2nd dose before travelling. If you are unvaccinated, the Government continues to encourage the avoidance of non-essential travel. Learn more here.

      Indigenous Tourism Ontario
      1300 Hwy 540
      4 directions Complex Unit 4
      Aundeck Omni Kaning, Ontario

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