RTO5 Ultimate Recipients


For Immediate Release

March 2, 2023  

Today, Regional Tourism Organization 5 – Greater Toronto Area (RTO5) announced support through the Tourism Relief Fund for 141 tourism businesses and organizations in Toronto, Mississauga and Brampton to recover from the pandemic and prepare for future growth. Delivered by Destination Toronto in its capacity as Regional Tourism Organization 5, in close partnership with Mississauga Tourism, Experience Brampton and the City of Toronto, Regional Tourism Organization 5 received $12 million to deliver this support as part of a Government of Canada contribution of over $78 million, through FedDev Ontario, which includes an almost $10-million top up to the original $68.5-million investment

The Tourism Relief Fund is a program of the Government of Canada and designed to help businesses and destinations recover from the deep challenges of the pandemic and build toward future, sustained growth.

Recipients supported include: 


Recipient Name


Funding contribution

Arts and Culture Initiative of South Asia

This project will help execute the 'Vibrant Brampton' event to promote artistic and cultural diversity in Brampton and Peel Region. 


Beaux Arts Brampton

This project will support the execution of 'Beaux Arts Melange Art Market Program' - a public art space to showcase local artists' work.


Bramalea City Centre

This project will support the launch of 'Bramalea's Curated Collective' - a variety of short-term exhibitions at Bramalea City Centre to support retail businesses at the centre. It includes kids' activities, a time capsule display, contests, and educational exhibits.


Canadian Indo Caribbean Festival (CICF)

This project will support ADAPT (Artist Development and Performance Training) - an arts and culture training and mentorship program for college and university students.


Carabram Brampton's Multicultural Festival

This project will increase Carabram Festival entertainment with well known artists, highlighting local talent to attract more visitors.


Downtown Brampton BIA

This project will support a 25-week music series in parks and restaurants and a weekly summer pop-up arts market as well as the creation of a retail spending incentive program for downtown merchants.



This project will train 20 youth in a series of technical, digital, business and live performance technologies and support enhancement of operations at the Lusofina Festival. 


Toprock Climbing

This project will upgrade the rock-climbing facility to create a more welcoming and enjoyable experience for patrons including the installation of air conditioning and a switch to an LED lighting system, increasing attendance for SportsTourism.




Recipient Name


Funding contribution 

Carassauga Festival Inc.

This project will enhance production of the three-day Carassauga Festival. The in-person event will have indoor and outdoor activities featuring 23 pavilions representing various countries. Outdoor events will feature incremental family-friendly fun activities including fireworks.


Clarkson Village BIA

This project will enhance the beautification and streetscaping of the Clarkson Business district. Upgrades will include new street-art installations and holiday decorations.


CreativeHub 1352

This project will support execution of the Mississauga Festival of Trees, which will include 10 family activities and workshops, two culinary markets, and three days of live entertainment from local artists.



This project will help revitalize the former Playdium space at the Square One Shopping Centre, including renovations to the Go-Kart track and mini golf courses.


Gymnastics Mississauga

This project will deliver a Fun Fair to promote the City of Mississauga as a preeminent destination for world-class gymnastics, and bolster future demand for Provincial, Canada-wide and international competitions.


Hub Climbing Mississauga

This project will expand climbing offerings to include spiderwebs, floating walls, floating steps and slides within the facility. The upgrades will enhance climbing tournament options and expand the sports tourism sector within the city.


Luxe Convention Centre

This project will help support and improve sustainability initiatives of the Convention Centre and provide a roadmap for other event spaces in the region to reduce their wastage and carbon footprint.


Metalworks Institute

This project will support a development program designed to expedite training for technicians in the music and entertainment industry.


Mississauga Italfest

This project will support the execution and expansion of quality entertainment shows of Mississauga Italfest in Mississauga Celebration Square.


Mississauga Music

This project will support the launch of Mississauga Music Week.


monstrARTity Creative Community

The project will deliver the enhancement of activities at the #BollywoodMonster Mashup festival, with an expected 60,000 attendees.



This project will expand MuslimFest from Mississauga to multiple cities across Southwestern Ontario. Enhancements include an expanded concert series and poetry jams, as well as improvements to festival accessibility and security.


The Egyptian Museum in Mississauga

This project will develop a multi-media, self-directed tour of the museum for patrons, facility improvements, and help the museum secure new and rare artifacts to expand visitor attendance.




Recipient Name


Funding contribution

Albion and Islington BIA

This project will increase local foot traffic by creating interactive public art, each mural linked by QR codes to animate public spaces and to drive revenue to local businesses.


Arcadia Earth Toronto

This project supports a new immersive exhibit located at Front and Spadina designed to entertain and inspire positive impacts on environmental sustainability storytelling.


Art Gallery of Ontario

This project expands and builds off the previous success of their ‘Virtual School Program' (VSP), designing options for schools within a 2-hour catchment to visit the AGO in person.


Art Spin

This project launches 'Mobile Sweat' interactive art project - a fully functioning travelling sauna with a multidisciplinary art program (i.e. artist talks, reading, sound/video art) in sites in downtown Toronto, North York, Scarborough and Burlington.



This project supports the execution of a 'business-to-business sales strategy' to collaborate with organizations for the use of its facilities - JUNOS, Collision, XP Game, Fringe Festival. It also adds new venue equipment.


Attractions Ontario

This project enhances website infrastructure to further assist the promotion of Attractions Ontario member organizations. It also upgrades the 'road trip planner' section of the website to promote travel within Ontario and improve the search and database sections of the website to better profile member organizations.


Awesome Sauce Inc.

This project supports sustainability enhancements of 'The Rose Picnic'; investing in reusable glassware, cashless ticketing, and creation of 30+ public art installations at Woodbine Park.


Azureau Wines and Spirits

This project supports the capital costs surrounding the development of a new event space—-equal parts art gallery, music venue, and culinary showcase, 


BIG Bloor Improvement Group

This project supports public art projects in underutilized public spaces and year-round pop-up events to support local retailers and restaurants.


Black Lab Brewing

This project supports the construction of a socially distanced garden patio at the microbrewery along with the capital costs of purchasing new brewery equipment to enhance visitor experience.


Bloor West Village BIA

This project includes enhancement of existing events, streetscape beautification and leveraging cultural elements to promote the area as a business and shopping district. 


Bloorcourt BIA

This project supports the development of public art projects in underutilized public spaces and 8 to 10 weekend concerts.


Buddies in Bad Times Theatre

This project involves supporting facility upgrades to the exterior of the building and interior renovations to deliver improved audience and onsite user experiences at a theatre inexplicably linked to Toronto’s Gay Village and its history.


Caliban Arts Theatre

This project supports one of the longest running African Canadian arts organizations with the development of creative new programming, film screenings and live theatre performances, music and literary events, lectures, and public discussion salons, as well as socials. 


Canada Basketball

This project supports Canada Basketball’s GLOBL JAM - an international basketball tournament designed to welcome the world to Canada and was held at the Mattamy Athletic Centre. 


Canada Running Series

This project increases the number of runner cheering sites along the marathon route from 10 to 23, adapts infrastructure along start/finish lines, and provides additional enhancements that include sound, production, signage, refreshment stations, security and fencing.


Canada's Walk of Fame

This project includes production enhancements for Canada's Walk of Fame Awards Show and Gala and supports a production documenting the Induction Gala and introduces the Hometown Heroes program.


Canadian Stage

This project expands 'Dream in High Park' programming that includes a 15-week festival from May to September.


Canadian International Fashion Film Festival (C.A.N.I.F.F.F.)

This project celebrates the world's best in the fashion film genre, highlighting Canadian creatives on a global scale through an Annual Awards Show celebrating 21 award categories, panel discussions and screenings with industry leaders traveling to Toronto.


Caribbean Promotions Arts & Culture Inc.

This project supports the development of Jerkfest Pop-Up Mini-Festivals and new program elements to build new audiences.


Centreville Amusement Park

This project supports the refurbishing of Centreville Amusement Park's train, which brings attendees through the park and will assist with the bridge rebuild/re-engineer, track replacement, engine repair, and train refurbishment.


Chimera Dance Theatre

This project supports the launch of the inaugural Halloween Dances Festival in the Annex neighbourhood.


Church-Wellesley Village BIA

This project supports the development of large-scale public art projects to boost the attractiveness of the 2SLGBTQ destination neighbourhood supporting local business development.



This project includes the renovating, upgrading and purchasing of specialized equipment to re-open the venue and improve accessibility. Renovations coincided with the return of the 'Night Shift Festival' in Sept. 2022 in Regent Park.


City Cruises Toronto

This project supports the installation of HVAC systems and the window replacements on two of Toronto Harbour Cruise boats to expand the winter experience.


Cityview Drive in

This project supports the addition of stage music and entertainment events in diverse outdoor spaces around Polson Pier in the Toronto Portlands.


College Promenade BIA

This project supports the addition of 12 weekends of pop-up concerts and beautification initiatives such as street banners and enhanced signage.


Convention Centres of Canada

This project focuses on best practice research, data analysis, transfer of knowledge and organizing workshops, hosting forums, and discussion groups at industry conferences addressing how the industry can operate in a post-pandemic environment.


Culinary Adventure Co.

This project supports the delivery of their Every Bite Tells A Story™ initiative involving the telling of stories through video, photography, interactive online tools and digital assets. 


Dupont by the Castle BIA

This project supports area beautification including street banners, decorative lighting, and public art projects to encourage visitors to extend time after visiting Casa Loma.


Easy & The Fifth Inc.

This collaborative project enhances the outdoor 'RendezViews' patio to make it more attractive for meeting/conference attendees, hosting weekend events and sport viewing experiences, and will enhance indoor spaces with a mural and expand AV capabilities across all exhibition spaces.



This project supports the re-launch of the Elevate Festival - Canada's largest festival for arts and innovation contributing to a number of new initiatives, including but not limited to a street festival and NFT (digital) gallery. 


Epilepsy Toronto

This project supports the Toronto International BuskerFest move to a new venue at Woodbine Park. The event will include life-size games, body bubble gear and interactive competitions.



This project creates a variety of 'shoulder' season/winter placemaking attractions and improves accessibility and recreation opportunities for the public. Winter placemaking includes installing heaters and supporting amenities (skating, trails). Accessibility improvements include site wayfinding, lighting, and surface and pathway rehabilitations.


Fairbank Village BIA

This project supports post-major infrastructure construction with a business district beautification project that includes new banners, baskets, and street lighting.



This project creates a new pickleball court and recreation facility in the Yonge and Eglinton area.


Fall for Dance North

This project supports the incremental elements at Fall for Dance North - including the addition of two new presentation venues— the Theatre at Harbourfront Centre and at the Evergreen Brickworks. Proceeds will also support Indigenous Enterprise - a collection of North American Indigenous dance styles. 


Famous People Players

This project supports facility improvements and equipment costs at the Famous People Players theatre, production costs, and the hiring of a tour coordinator specialist.


Greater Toronto Hotel Association

This project supports a change in the Toronto hotel sector business development strategy with industry events that support travel recovery & promote employment including a Hotel Summit, an awards initiative and the presentation of best practice research for the industry.


Guild Festival Theatre

This project supports the launch of the 'Discover Your Passion' initiative aimed to revitalize and animate the Scarborough main street business district through a series of diverse performances and public art. 


Heatwave for Sick Kids

This project adds new recreation, sport and event management equipment for the re-launch of well-established fund-raising events including a new online digital registration system.


Italian Contemporary Film Festival (I.C.F.F.)

This project supports the I.C.F.F.’s creation of a new outdoor film and cultural activity event IncluCity hosted in the Distillery District with culinary booths, outdoor cinema, and public art.


Indie Alehouse

This project supports expenses surrounding special theme events hosted at India Alehouse and at competitor sites that include tastings and educational events. 


It's Ok Community Arts

This project supports the organization of a series of discussion-type events centered on Black community artists along with the creation of new murals, and the build of a new digital website to showcase events and artists.


Kaeja d'Dance

This project supports the introduction of new dance performances at Harbourfront Centre in Toronto. The project also includes the addition of augmented reality posters throughout the city to promote performances.


Kensington Market BIA

This project supported the relaunch of Pedestrian Sundays in Kensington Market from May thru October 2022.


Levelup Reality

This project supports the expansion of the Levelup Reality virtual reality experience with funds used to construct a second virtual reality centre. 



Le Théâtre français de Toronto

This project supports the renovation costs of the theatre's downtown location from meeting rooms, offices and rehearsal spaces to create a professional studio space and reception area that will cater to smaller audiences.


Lighthouse Immersive Inc.

This project will support the premiere of the Bob Marley immersive experience at the 1 Yonge St. location.


Little Canada

This project showcases local Toronto businesses and destinations from within the attraction, placing significance and visibility on neighbouring Chinatown. The project will include a visible story card in English, French, and Chinese.


Little Portugal Toronto BIA

This project supports the expansion of the Do West Festival and the addition of large format murals throughout the BIA area.


Lob Toronto

This project upgrades technologies including ecommerce website capabilities and includes the installation of new signage and improved interior installations.


Lula Music and Arts Centre

This project expands and enhances global music workshops for youth and concerts.


Luminato Festival Toronto

This project supported the re-launch of Luminato moving beyond traditional, indoor presentation venues to take art into the streets. By activating outdoor spaces with a monumental festival hub at Yonge-Dundas Square, COVID planning disruptions are mitigated, revitalizing the downtown core and attracting new audiences with incremental elements such as the public art installation of renowned photographer Edward Burtynsky’s In the Wake of Progress. 


Luxe Modern Rentals

This project supports the transformation of an existing company showroom space used during the pandemic as local community indoor playspace into a permanent VR Playspace venue.


M. Gibbons Ventures Ltd.

This project supports infrastructure improvements to the Adelaide Hall venue for concert shows and events improving the audience experience.


MCI Canada

This project supports the development of a sustainability toolkit for business meeting and conference organizers.


Mimico by the Lake BIA

This project supports a new 8-week Sunday Sunset music series on weekends during August and September.



This project supports the creation of a new customized mobile marketing app solution for travellers and visitors to the GTA called Minicards.



This project supports MODECANADAROCKS Renaissance + Reunion, an outdoor party + fashion musical celebrating the reopening of Canada and Canadian multiculturalism, reconnecting 10,000 live guests and unlimited digital and television audiences with Ontario businesses, artists, and each other.


Moore Carlyle Consulting & MCC Destination Management

This project supports work with Global DMC Partners to become accredited as a sustainable DMC, with the local work to measure existing products as a sustainable event element while developing new sustainable offerings for the event industry.


Motorama Custom Car & Motorsports Expo

This project relaunches the CME Show 'Motorama', focused on classic cars and Canadian motorsports. It includes significant improvements to the visitor and exhibitor registration system, and enhanced PPE and exhibition space.


Mount Pleasant Village BIA

This project supports public art projects, street poles and murals, and new branding for a ‘shop local’ program.


Mulan International Film Festival

This project supports the execution and expansion of a film festival focusing on Canadian and youth filmmakers and experimental films, and expands the festival to a year-round program.


Museum of Toronto

This project launches the '36 Questions that Lead to Loving Toronto' exhibit - an immersive and experiential exhibit that covers the history of Toronto in an interactive and educational way.


Narat Inc.

This project supports GTFF, a global film festival competition dedicated to the recognition of excellence in all audiovisual content related to promoting destinations and tourism through narrative and documentary. GTFF will hold 2022 activities in Toronto attracting visitors, travel trade and the film industry with a goal to boost year-round tourism and film investment.


Oakwood Village BIA

This project supports the purchase and installation of decorative street lighting that can be changed by season that attracts visitors to local businesses and restaurants.


Ontario By Bike

This project expands a bicycle friendly business certification program to include food service locations, attractions and integrate the local BIAs.


Ontario Craft Brewers

This project supports industry best practice research to assist member organizations in promotion and recovery post-pandemic and includes technical upgrades to the website and an online content campaign for association members.


Ontario Science Centre

This project funds 'Great Hall immersive exhibitions: Above & Beyond, Indigenous Ingenuity and Regalia'. Three exhibitions that inform visitors about aerospace innovation, indigenous innovation, and cultural pride.


Ossington BIA

This project supports the expansion of OssFest, the creation of murals and other public arts initiatives, an indigenous sculpture project, and a new holiday season event.


Outside the March

This project supports the mitigation of major losses experienced in live theatre by hiring understudies (backup performers) and renting an innovative microphone-and-headset system that significantly reduces aerosolized droplets to ensure the production is a vibrant, electric “welcome-back” to audiences.


OverActive Media

This project supports the hosting of the Toronto Ultra Call of Duty Major E-sports tournament at Mattamy Centre.


QET Operations Ltd.

This project is to help revitalize the Queen Elizabeth Theatre including renovations to capital equipment and event space.


Queen Street West BIA

This project supports an integrated program of initiatives to develop the "Night Time Economy" 6PM to 6AM along Queen Street West including lighting, safety training and special event programming.


Quell Inc.

This project supports the launch of 'commUNITY' event series - an immersive culinary experience that combines education and shared stories through food and beverage. The Toronto event focused on the history of the Asian community and included a panel discussion with culinary experts of Asian heritage.


Redpath Waterfront Festival

This project supported enhancement of the 2022 Redpath Waterfront Festival including new Indigenous-themed programming on the Sugar Beach stage and the expansion of food and picnic areas.


Ripley's Aquarium of Canada

This project supported the installation of the Giant Plastic Tap public art project to raise awareness of issues surrounding single use plastics and water conservation.


Riverside BIA

This project supported year-round activation of new public space created post construction, a local dining program and a new winter weekend event.


Roadshow Events: Robert Munsch

This project supported STORIES by Robert Munsch, a 12-week indoor immersive visual and auditory experience for children and parents at Gerrard Square Mall.


Royal Theatre

This project will involve the addition of web-streaming digital technology and major upgrades to the in-house lighting and projection systems to better serve audiences.


Saulter Street Brewery

This project will improve signage, develop weekend music opportunities for local artists, and build a weatherproof patio.



This project celebrates the 40th Anniversary season, new shows, and an enhanced elaborate production at Koerner Hall and a holiday season concert.


St. Patrick's Parade Society of Toronto

This project introduces a new 'Toronto Celtic Festival' with events occurring between August - December 2022.


Stackt Market

This project develops Ontario's first licensed off-leash dog park, creates a basketball court, and further develops public gardens and patio seating.


Superior Events Group Inc.

This project updates 'Get Ready' programming, and modernizes equipment and procedures for safe tourism at fairs, festivals, and other major tourism destinations.


Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts

This project advances accessibility and addresses pandemic issues. It improves digital technologies and launches a new Disability Leadership Award with culminating events the Dora Mavor Moore Awards celebration


Taste of the Middle East

This project expands festival programming to host 'Taste of the Middle East: WinterFest', an indoor three-day festival in December with 30,000 attendees expected.


Temple and Temple Tours Inc.

This project introduces the new 'Living Like a Local' project - walking tours for foreign visitors in downtown Toronto and excursions that include one-day trips to Niagara Falls, Algonquin Park, Blue Mountain, a Maple Syrup Farm, and Prince Edward County.


The Concert Hall

This project updates audio and lighting infrastructure at the main performance hall and in the 'Red Room' venue.


The Eglinton Way BIA

This project supports new year-round events to relaunch the BIA after a major period of local construction. It includes a fall farmers market, a fashion show to promote local shops and designers, art walks and movies in parks.


The Howland Company

This project supports the launch and execution of the 'Entrances and Exits: Home for the Holidays' live production play.


The Junction BIA

This project supports an expansion of Window Wonderland, an augmented reality program and new immersive evening area walking tours.


The Musical Stage Company

This project offers free, unticketed performances and programs to: 'Musical Moments', 'Pre-Show Cats', 'Marquee Ensemble', 'Cultural Exchange' and 'On Dixon Road' to bring audiences back to musical theatre, included audience transportation via shuttle to performances in High Park.


The Phoenix Concert Theatre

This project upgrades payment and security systems and installs new stage lighting to modernize the venue.


The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery

This project supports 'The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery' three public art installations featuring work from 10 Indigenous artists and additional proceeds designated for digitization costs to enhance website capacity and build integrated e-commerce functionality.


The Theatre Centre

This project supports renovations for the theatre, including improvements for accessibility, soundproofing and new equipment/furnishings and a rebranding of the theatre.


The Toronto Fringe

This project supports the return of the festival and the addition of  two community hubs: 'The POSTSCRIPT PATIO' and the 'Tranzac Club'. It develops a new public art installation depicting the history of Fringe Festival.


The Urban Guide

This project launches 'The Landmark Series' - a collection of 10 hybrid digital experiences that use gamification to showcase the diversity of urban regions.


The Word On The Street

This project supported ‘Word on the Street’ with COVID safety supplies and financed the edition of a virtual livestream for the festival and ASL translators for speaker presentations.


Theatre Direct

This project supports the Theatre Direct launch of a Winter Solstice Event and Parade utilizing family activities, public art, and culinary highlights to increase destination appeal.


Theatre Gargantua

This project supports the theatre’s Urban ARTeries (UA) multimedia project - part- street art, part live performance digital installation; augmented reality component with live performances.


Toronto Botanical Garden

This project enhances the Visitor Centre making it more accessible, with more seating, improving on season-round displays, renovating event spaces and improving AV technology.


Toronto Bus Co.

This project expands Toronto and Niagara Falls sightseeing tours to offer tours in more languages than English, requiring translation costs supporting multiple language needs, and equipping vehicles with GPS-triggered tour equipment and the human resource costs needed to service tourism needs.  


Toronto Downtown West BIA

This project includes the development of a new augmented reality walking tour featuring 70 public art installations in the downtown area.


Toronto Food Film Fest

This project extends and enhances programming in Little Italy and adds virtual broadcasts covering speaker panels and culinary events.


Toronto International Boat Show

This project supports the return of the Toronto Boat Show, a new visitor and exhibitor registration system, expanded seminars, and workshops and indoor water-based activities at the show (i.e. docking classes, paddle boarding, water ski shows).


Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival

This project supports the re-launch of a two-day free festival with incremental costs relating to social distancing, performers, heritage dragon boat racing costs, tents and staff with the festival’s return to Toronto Island. 


Toronto Island SUP

This project modernizes operations with a new fleet of paddle boards, kayaks, and boats for stand-up paddle boarding business on Toronto Island. It expands the number and type of tours and visitor reception facility.


Toronto Outdoor Picture Show

This project supports a summer-long outdoor film festival in four green spaces across Toronto.


Toronto Symphony Orchestra

This project supports enhanced programming for the symphony’s  100th anniversary celebration, including a free concert at Roy Thomson Hall.



This project increases the amount of personal space in vehicles, improves signage, trains new staff on proper protocols and to use personal headsets so that tour guides can communicate while wearing masks.


UrbanArts Community Arts Council

This project creates an exhibition for Nuit Blanche displaying the past, present and future of Weston.


Vantage Venues

This project adds new video / audio broadcast technology to a hybrid meeting venue in a downtown Toronto office tower.


Water & Wood Wellness Spa Ltd.

This project enhances existing events and develops alternative methods of delivery of live events at Woodbine Beach, including purchase of event specific equipment.


Willowdale BIA

This project includes streetscape beautification, area rebranding and a multi weekend fall music series.


York-Eglinton BIA

This project supports a new signature festival to mark the end of the construction of the Eglinton Crosstown Line and the positioning of "Little Jamaica" as a new cultural destination.


Young People's Theatre

Young People's TheatreThis project supports capital costs and architectural planning costs relating to improving the air and heating circulation of the theatre’s lobby spaces and the performers' green space allowing for enhanced social distancing and creating an improved audience and performer experience.



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