October 7, 2021

Event Atlantic Excellence Awards recipients announced!

​(HALIFAX, NS – October 8, 2021) During the first inaugural Event Atlantic Excellence Awards, Seven (7) awards were presented to events held in Atlantic Canada in 2019-2020 and individuals and organizations who have made a significant impact to the Event industry.  

  • Event with a budget less than $100,000: HRM Holiday Projection Show 
  • Event with a budget between $100,000 - $500,000: The Miramichi Striper Cup 
  • Event with a budget over $500,000: The Island Games – Canadian Premier League 
  • Volunteer of the Year: Heather Boyd 
  • Champion of the Year – Wayne Long (Events Development Officer - City of Charlottetown) 
  • Corporate Partner of the Year – Atlantic Lottery 
  • Chair’s Award – The late Ian Fowler (Moncton, New Brunswick) 

The Excellence Awards were created as a priority of Event Atlantic’s recently adopted Strategic Plan with a mission to inspire and support growth, development, and sustainability of event tourism in Atlantic Canada. 

The recipients were presented their awards during a luncheon hosted by local comedy ventriloquist, Michael Harrison, during Event Atlantic’s annual Summit.    

Photo: As a priority of the Event Atlantic Society, a local artist, Lori Nason of Fused Glass Diva, was commissioned to create the unique award pieces.  

February 27, 2019

Event Atlantic Summit takes the stage in Charlottetown during ECMA week.

The energy in Charlottetown will be palpable during the 5th annual Event Atlantic Summit being hosted May 2-4 while the East Coast Music Association’s awards, festival and conference are in town.

“Atlantic Canada is known for its highly successful event hosting and we are oftentimes looked upon as leaders nationally,” said Charlottetown Mayor Philip Brown. “Charlottetown is elated to, once again, have the opportunity to host the Event Atlantic Summit during one of Atlantic Canada’s signature events, the East Coast Music Awards: Festival and Conference. The Capital City – Birthplace of Confederation – will be abuzz with Summit delegates and ECMA fans, adding excitement to what is sure to be an eventful time in Charlottetown.”

Playing host to the Summit for a second time, Charlottetown is no stranger to hosting events. The recipient of numerous national awards for their work in the industry, Charlottetown continues to lead the charge on event hosting with experience to share and help guide other industry professionals down a successful path.

“Hosting the Event Atlantic Summit in Charlottetown during ECMA week is a perfect fit,” commented Seamus O’Keefe, Chair of Event Atlantic. “In the past, the Summit has been held in conjunction with sport tourism events hosted throughout the region. Now, delegates will have the opportunity to experience a different segment of the event tourism sector while attending the Summit.”

The Event Atlantic Summit welcomes anyone in the economic development, tourism, sport, cultural and event hosting industry to attend. While a full program has not yet been announced, the Summit is sure to feature presentations that cover all aspects of event hosting like adding non-traditional experiences to your event, best practices on how to host a successful signature event, how to overcome unexpected challenges at your event and how to build a successful bid.

For more information on the Event Atlantic Summit, and to register, visit: eventatlantic.ca​

May 30, 2022

2022-2023 Event Atlantic Board of Directors Announced

(ATLANTIC CANADA – May 30, 2022) – The 2022 Event Atlantic Annual General Meeting was held virtually on May 30, 2022.  The AGM provided members and other event industry leaders with insights into Event Atlantic’s ongoing work in the industry as well as determined the incoming board of directors.

Chair: Matt Moore – General Manager – Rath Eastlink Community Centre/ Events Truro Colchester
Vice-Chair: Tanya Haywood – Deputy City Manager, Community Services – City of St. John’s
Treasurer: Bobbie Despres – Sport Tourism Coordinator – City of Fredericton
Paul MacDonald – General Manager – Centre 200
Emma MacKenzie – Manager of Operations – PEI Shellfish Festival
Jeff MacTavish – Director of Economic Development and Tourism – City of Miramich

Charlotte Nicholson – Tourism and Events Coordinator – City of Charlottetown
Erin Skinner – Tourism and Events Supervisor – City of St. John's

During the Annual General Meeting an amendment to the Society's bylaws was approved by the membership. The board of directors now includes four (4) ex-officio 'founding advisor' seats. These seats will exclusively be held by representatives of the City of Charlottetown, City of Moncton, Events Nova Scotia and STEP St. John's.  

The board and staff of Event Atlantic look forward to seeing industry leaders in Miramichi this September for the Event Summit and Excellence Awards. 

January 25, 2017

The City of St. John’s, in partnership with STEP St. John’s (Sport Tourism Event Partnership St. John’s), will play host to the third annual Atlantic Canada Event Summit. The Summit is being held March 8-10, 2017 at the Sheraton Hotel Newfoundland in conjunction with the Tim Hortons Brier and will have Mayor Dennis O’Keefe serving as Honourary Chair. The Summit is Atlantic Canada’s only conference dedicated to the sport and major event hosting industry.

“We are extremely pleased to host the 2017 Event Atlantic Summit," said Dennis O’Keefe, Mayor of the City of St. John’s. “We have been working diligently with our partners to bring this event to St. John’s, which supports our long term goal to increase sport event tourism as an economic driver for the entire region. St. John's has an array of amenities to offer; Mile One Centre, the newly upgraded St. John’s Convention Centre, and King George V Soccer Stadium are just a few examples, making us an ideal location for current and future events.”

"STEP St. John's is excited to host the 2017 Event Atlantic Summit in conjunction with the Tim Hortons Brier and the opportunity to showcase the City of St. John's as an event destination,” said STEP St. John’s, Chair, Danny Breen. “We know through our work with STEP St. John’s the importance that events play in our city and provincial tourism economy. It’s important our communities and partners come together and enhance hosting best practices.”  

“St. John’s is well known for its hosting reputation and we’re delighted to bring together this important gathering of municipal, community and event industry leaders from across Atlantic Canada,” said Event Atlantic Chair, Wayne Long. “As a region, it’s important we work together to bring in more event business. Events not only make communities more vibrant and attractive, they also provide important economic and cultural benefits.”

 The Summit will feature sessions in; the how and why of municipal event sponsorship, evaluating and managing event risk, social media marketing with festivals and events. It will also feature a number of dynamic keynote speakers including; Peter Inch, Chair, Curling Canada, Brent Barootes, President and CEO, The Partnership Group and Greg Stremlaw, General Manager, Olympics/Chef de Mission PyeongChang 2018, CBC Sports, in addition to speakers representing all four Atlantic Provinces”.

Sport tourism is a $6.1 billion industry in Canada and is one of the fastest growing tourism sectors. A growing number of Atlantic Canadian communities are using events and sport hosting as a community economic development initiative. These events attract new visitors and enhance awareness of the destinations.

The Atlantic Canada Event Summit will bring together political, community and event leaders from all four Atlantic Provinces with the goals of; increasing collaboration with event hosting in Atlantic Canada, examining the sharing of event best practices and  enhancing opportunities with events for the region through attraction, successful execution and activation.

For more information on the Summit and to register, please visit www.eventatlantic.ca or follow us on twitter @EventAtlantic.

July 24, 2020 

2020 Event Atlantic Board of Directors Announced

(ATLANTIC CANADA – July 23, 2020) – While, typically held during the annual Event Summit, in response to the current pandemic restrictions, the 2020 Event Atlantic Annual General Meeting was held virtually.  The AGM provided members and other event industry leaders with insights into Event Atlantic’s ongoing work in the industry as well as determined the incoming board of directors.

Chair: Matt Moore – General Manager – Rath Eastlink Community Centre/ Events Truro Colchester
Vice-Chair: Tanya Haywood – Deputy City Manager, Community Services – City of St. John’s
Treasurer: Bobbie Despres – Sport Tourism Coordinator – City of Fredericton
Past Chair: Seamus O’Keefe – STEP St. John’s
Denis LeBlanc – Director of Community Living – Ville de Shediac
Wayne Long – Events Development Officer – City of Charlottetown
Brodie O’Keefe - General Manager – Cavendish Beach Music Festival, Whitecap Entertainment
Jennifer Shebib – Events Specialist

While the 2020 Event Summit was cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic, Event Atlantic is committed to hosting the Summit in Fredericton in 2021. 

March 29, 2019

NOTICE: Event Atlantic Annual General Meeting

​All members of Event Atlantic are welcome and encouraged to attend the Event Atlantic Society 2019 Annual General Meeting.

Date: Friday May 3, 2019
Time: 12:30pm
Location: Confederation Center of the Arts, Memorial Hall - 145 Richmond Street, Charlottetown, PE

An overview of the organization and financial statements will be presented, and the election to the Board of Directors will be conducted.  Amendment to be voted on by the membership to item 14 of the Event Atlantic Society By-laws: 

14. An annual general meeting shall be held within three months after every fiscal year end and notice is required which must:

a)specify the date, place and time of the meeting,
b)be given to the members thirty (30) days prior to the meeting,
c)be given to the members by newsletters, newspapers, television, radio, e-mail,telephone, fax and/or other electronic means,
d)specify the intention to propose a special resolution, and 
e)the non-receipt of notice by any member shall not invalidate the proceedings

Amendment proposed: An annual general meeting shall be held annually during the Event Atlantic Summit and notice is required which must:

For more information, contact Stefanie Turner
902.303.6590 | stefanie@eventatlantic.ca

Event Atlantic in the NEWS

April 7, 2020

A message from Event Atlantic:

We are currently in uncharted territory and the impact on event tourism is hitting hard with many events having to postpone, or in some cases, cancel altogether. The ripple effect throughout the Atlantic region is evident with many support industries such as accommodation providers, restaurants, transportation/service providers and many others seeing widespread layoffs. The novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) has captivated society and we face times of significant uncertainty.

It is important to use this situation as an opportunity to learn and grow as a community and collectively share all best practices pertaining to COVID-19. When our community faces a health issue, natural disaster, or other emergency, we have a meaningful opportunity to reflect on how we collectively manage through these occurrences as we continue to strive for resilience in our efforts.

The Event Atlantic Society - representing various venues, municipalities and event rights holders continues to monitor the developments of COVID-19 and its impact on the event industry. As a board we remain committed to keeping everyone informed and are currently gathering information in order to understand the extent of COVID-19’s impact, so we are able to share best practices in managing COVID-19 and rejuvenating the event tourism sector. We invite you to connect with one of our board members to seek guidance in your challenges and to share your successes as we work through these uncertain times together.

While we must focus on the best interest of public health and safety, we must also be optimistic about our future. The event industry is resilient and while the road forward will be difficult, we can and will make a remarkable comeback and continue to drive economic and tourism prosperity in the region.


New Brunswick
Bobby Despres ~ bobby.despres@fredericton.ca     |     Denis LeBlanc ~ denis.leblanc@shediac.ca    

Tanya Haywood ~ THaywood@stjohns.ca     |     Seamus O’Keefe ~ sok@sokassociates.com

Nova Scotia
Matt Moore ~ mmoore@ratheastlinkcc.ca     |     Jennifer Shebib ~ jennifershebib@gmail.com

Prince Edward Island
JP Desrosiers ~ JP.Desrosiers@city.summerside.pe.ca     |     Wayne Long ~ wlong@charlottetown.ca

Stefanie Turner ~ stefanie@eventatlantic.ca

February 24, 2016

​Curling Canada is the national sport governing body responsible for the development, promotion and organization of curling in Canada. In cooperation with its Provincial and Territorial Member Associations across Canada, Curling Canada provides programs and services to curlers of all ages.

The primary area of administration and the most financially consuming of Curling Canada’s responsibilities are championships. On an annual basis, Curling Canada sanctions and conducts 11 national curling championship events. Approximately 12,000 competitive curlers from all provinces and territories enter play at the curling club level with the hopes of becoming one of the Canadian Champions crowned annually.

Curling Canada is requesting expressions of interest for hosting the following 2018 events:

Tim Hortons Brier - Canadian Men’s Curling Championship
The Scotties Tournament of Hearts - Canadian Women’s Curling Championship
The Mixed - Canadian Mixed Curling Championship
The Canadian Seniors - Canadian Senior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships
Canadian Juniors - Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships
Ford World Championships 

March 20, 2019

Atlantic Canada wins big at CSTA 2019 PRESTIGE Awards

The outstanding events, people and organizations from Canada’s vibrant sport tourism industry in Canada were honoured at the 13th annual Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance (CSTA) PRESTIGE Awards. The awards recognize those who work to bid, host and stage sport events across the country.

“Every person and every event that was nominated helped contribute to Canada’s well-deserved reputation for hosting events. Once again, our finalists represented the breadth and depth of sport tourism in our nation,” said Rick Traer, CEO, Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance. “Each one embodies the dedication and commitment that is so critical to successful event bidding, hosting and delivery. We are proud to recognize recipients from across the country, from large and small centers, and a wide range of events with the 2019 PRESTIGE Awards.”

Among the winners was Event Atlantic's board member, Laurel Lea, Tourism Development Officer for the City of Charlottetown.  Laurel was awarded the 2018 CSTA Sport Tourism Rising Star of the Year Award. This award recognizes the 'next-gen' of sport tourism professionals in Canada, acknowledging emerging leaders who have already demonstrated commitment, creativity, and dynamic energy in the sport tourism industry.

Of the 8 awards, 4 were awarded to Atlantic Canada:

CSTA Canadian Sport Event Sponsorship Initiative of the Year Award presented by Adup Display
Sobeys Inc. & Michelin Corporate Foundation, Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games, (Antigonish, N.S.) 
Both Sobeys Incorporated & Michelin Corporate Foundation were fully involved in the Special Olympics Canada 2018 Summer Games in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. They went far beyond their financial contributions to create a Games atmosphere which engaged athletes, volunteers, families and supporters. Their connection to the Games grew the awareness of Special Olympics, and many of their employees volunteered throughout the week. Their successful goal of an athlete-centred Games, combined with the Sobeys and Michelin Square which gave all visitors a truly unique Games experience, ensured the best ever event and created an enduring legacy to grow Special Olympics in Nova Scotia.

CSTA Sport Event Legacy of the Year Award presented by ConnectOnCampus (two recipients)
9th Down Syndrome World Swimming Championships 2018, (Truro, N.S.)
Hosting the 9th Down Syndrome World Swimming Championships marked the first major event held in the pool facility at Truro’s Rath Eastlink Community Centre. A significant investment was made to upgrade its infrastructure, including an arena screen and dehumidifier. They hosted and fed over 500 athletes, coaches and trainers from more than 25 countries. Plastic waste was reduced by using large water dispensers rather than disposable bottles, and bikes and buses kept the transportation carbon footprint low. The most enduring legacies are new programs in partnership with the Autism Society Swim Class and the Special Olympics swim club and a new awareness of inclusiveness within the community

CSTA Sport Tourism Rising Star of the Year Award presented by Sport Durham
Laurel Lea, Tourism Officer, City of Charlottetown – SCORE, (Charlottetown, P.E.I.)
Currently the Tourism Officer for the City of Charlottetown’s sport tourism organization SCORE, Laurel Lea has had a profound impact on attracting events to the city. She has led bid development, been a part of multiple host committees and has helped secure funding to enable hosting events. As a result, SCORE has successfully held many high profile regional, Eastern Canadian, national, and international events. Last year it ranked #1 for destinations with populations less than 50,000 on the GSI Canada Index. Chair of the Charlottetown Special Events Reserve Fund and a Board Member of Event Atlantic, Laurel has also contributed to SCORE’s five-year plan to expand its efforts and to be even more successful in the future.

CSTA Canadian Sport Event of the Year Award (Group B: budget less than $1 million) presented by Québec Destination affaires
2018 Canada 55+ Games, (Saint John, N.B.) 
The 2018 Canada 55 plus Games celebrated healthy living – and also brought together various senior clubs, centres, and accommodation providers throughout Saint John. Targeting 55+ aged volunteers was a success and raised awareness of sporting opportunities for the 55+ community, inspiring many to compete provincially and nationally at future events, as well as to become officials. Local retailers, restaurants and hotels created incentive programs for the 2300 participants, hosted specials for different teams and ensured the games spirit was felt throughout the city. The legacy of the event can be seen in improved facilities, funds donated to help seniors stay active, and growing the awareness of the Games for the future.