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November 19, 2018
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Spirit of Wenjiang, China Comes Alive in Halton Hills

First ever week-long festival of Chinese culture delights residents.

The Wenjiang Festival, a full week celebration of cultural events showcasing our sister city, has delighted and amazed both residents and special visitors from many miles away. Halton Hills residents participated in classes, workshops, presentations and performances during this special endeavor designed to foster close relations between Halton Hills and its sister city, Wenjiang, China.

The Festival was also designed to bridge economic development and culture, with the goal being lasting economic development benefits for local businesses. Over 14 public events took place from October 23 – 28. All classes were at capacity and 250 people had a chance to learn Sichuan Cooking,Traditional Chinese Painting, Calligraphy, and Chinese Folklore Dance. The Wenjiang Cultural Showcase welcomed over 200 people who came out to enjoy a fantastic and diverse show of Chinese cultural events from both the Wenjiang delegation and local Chinese Canadian community.

Countless other community members enjoyed Chinese dance performances at Georgetown Market Place and at the Acton Arena and the Sichuan cooking demonstration on the floor of the Real Canadian Superstore. At the Wenjiang VIP Performing Arts Gala held on Thursday evening, special messages were received from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport Eleanor McMahon, and Michael Chong, MP for Wellington-Halton Hills. Honoured guests included Mayor LI Yi of Wenjiang, Senator Victor OH of the Government of Canada, and Deputy Consul General XU Wei.

Mayor Rick Bonnette, one of the original signatories to the sister city agreement, attended and emceed many of the events and enthusiastically voiced his pride:

"Our citizens were enthralled by the variety of cultural activities; our visitors enchanted by the special brand of warmth offered by our Town. This is a significant year for Canada, and indeed an historic opportunity for two cultures - two sister cities - to strengthen the bond that began in 2016 with the signing of a document binding us together. Among the week's highlights was the joining of two schools, Ethel Gardiner P.S. and Wenjiang Guanghua Experimental Primary School. What a wonderful opportunity for children of both cultures to meet and share friendship. From the classes in traditional Chinese painting and dance, to the highlights of the Cultural Showcase at the John Elliott Theatre, every event was full with citizens thoroughly enjoying the experience of culture and camaraderie. I'm pleased and proud that we received national media coverage for this event as well as coverage in China, which will serve to globally showcase the cultural commitment and innovative thinking that are among the hallmarks of Halton Hills."

The Town of Halton Hills, with a population of approximately 60,000, consists of two urban centres, Georgetown and Acton, the Halton Hills Premier Gateway employment area, three hamlets – Glen Williams, Stewarttown and Norval – and several smaller settlements. Halton Hills has long been recognized for its natural beauty, active agricultural community, high quality of life and proximity to major centres, including Brampton, Mississauga and Toronto. The Town is ranked as one of the top small communities in Canada by a national magazine.

You can find the full press release here: Press Release

Additional Media Coverage

OMNI TV: News Report

Town of Halton Hills: Wenjiang Festival

Media Contact:

Catherine McLeod

Cultural Development Co-ordinator

905-873-2601, ext. 2543