January 29, 2016
Winter at its Best
As the new year begins, I would like to take the opportunity, as the Board Chair of the Société du Parc Jean‑Drapeau to extend my warmest wishes for health, happiness and prosperity in 2016. May the year ahead lead to the fulfilment of your most ambitious projects or simply provide you with the opportunity to enjoy life in the company of your loved ones.
Winter is now well underway, and it was with a great deal of enthusiasm, on January 14, that we launched the 2016 edition of the Fête des neiges de Montréal at Parc Jean‑Drapeau. Since the festivities began, more than 50,000 people have participated in this unique event in Montréal, which offers more than 25 outdoor activities in a charming setting located just a few steps from the downtown area.
For many of us, the Fête des neiges de Montréal is an occasion to embrace winter and take advantage of all of the wonderful things this typically northern‑climate season has to offer. Whether it's sliding, skating, snow sculpturing, or simply taking in the outdoor shows while sipping a hot chocolate, people of all ages will definitely partake in fun‑filled activities they can enjoy as a family or with friends. I cordially invite you to come and discover the Fête des neiges during the final two weekends of the event, January 30‑31 and February 6‑7.
But over and above the thrilling experience of speeding downhill on the tube slide or the excitement that comes from playing in a boot hockey game, I truly believe, as a mother and grandmother, that the Fête des neiges de Montréal is an ideal opportunity for families to mutually experience these unique moments of joy and togetherness that will eventually turn into lasting memories. Why not take the time to come and play outdoors, in great company, simply for the fun of it?
Getting Ready for a Diversified Summer Program
While the Fête des neiges de Montréal is in full swing, the Parc Jean‑Drapeau team is hard at work preparing for the summer season at the Parc, which will feature some 60 recreational, sports, cultural and charitable activities, along with providing some truly outstanding green spaces for nature lovers. From the Osheaga music and arts festival to the aquatic activities at the Plage Jean‑Doré, along with the Week‑ends du Monde event, the Grand Prix du Canada and a wide range of family activities, the Parc will be staging a diversified summer program which will be announced this spring.
To provide you with a preview of what's in store for visitors this summer, Parc Jean‑Drapeau is proud to be the host for five disciplines that are part of the 51st edition of the Québec Games; the five sports are 3D archery, open water swimming, beach volleyball, canoe‑kayaking and the triathlon. This huge sporting event brings together thousands of young Québec athletes who will have the opportunity to discover Parc Jean‑Drapeau's Aquatic Complex and Olympic Basin, both of which are international‑calibre facilities. It's a unique opportunity for these young athletes to excel in an inspirational environment, to the delight of fans who enjoy summer sport competitions.
A major turnabout in 2016
Last fall, we announced the imminent realization of a development project that will include the building of a natural amphitheatre, a panoramic riverside walkway and a redesigned main concourse in the southwest sector of Île Sainte‑Hélène at Parc Jean‑Drapeau. Work on this development project will begin in October, 2016, and will continue until 2018. Once this transformation has been completed, the reception, restaurant, security and active transportation services will be greatly enhanced. More than anything, we are hoping to improve the visitors' experience and provide them with a special access to the natural riches and the heritage of the green and blue spaces that personify Parc Jean‑Drapeau.
As promised, I will continue to keep you informed about the developments in the various public matters pertaining to Parc Jean‑Drapeau. I will also ensure there is transparency about the strategic directions emanating from the thought process currently being conducted on the future of this great Parc.