After two amazing weeks of celebrating excellence in sport in Canada, the 2017 Canada Summer Games Host Society and Co-Hosts, Treaty No. 1, Treaty No. 3 and the Metis Nation represented by the Manitoba Metis Federation along with 6,000 passionate volunteers are bidding adieu to The Hottest Summer in Half a Century and one of the most successful Canada Games ever.
From July 28 to August 13, 4,000 athletes and an estimated 20,000+ visitors experienced Friendly Manitoba (along with Kenora, ON.) during the 50th anniversary of the Canada Games and the 150th of Confederation. Those two milestones made for an incredible backdrop to a Canada Games where athletes reported the record breaking crowds inspired them to reach personal bests.
For two wonderful weeks this summer as the country watched from the edge of their seats - hands raised in the air and voices elevated with excitement and pride - young athletes came together for an athletic competition like no other.
“Throughout the Games athletes inspired us with their talent, spirit and the sheer joy they brought to the task of competing and sharing this experience with fellow athletes from around the country,” remarked Hubert Mesman, Co-Chair of the Host Society. “Their grace under pressure speaks to their character and leadership potential while their performances here have inspired and moved us! We wish them continued success in both their athletic careers and life aspirations.”
"Today is a day of many emotions. You came as ambassadors of your Province or Territory with a passion for sports and you have really impressed us!" said Mariette Mulaire, Co-Chair of the Host Society. “Whether you won or lost, we hope you will have a lasting memory from your participation in the Games and the life experience it provided.
“Our deep appreciation and sincere thanks to the 6,000 volunteers who went above and beyond to deliver a memorable experience for the athletes, visitors, spectators and media,” remarked Jeff Hnatiuk, President and CEO, 2017 Canada Summer Games Host Society. “Our sea of orange was everywhere this summer as they enthusiastically committed over 400,000 hours of their time to make these Games a success.”
New Canada Games sport records set
The 50th edition of the Canada Games was one for the record books, with several records shattered during two weeks of competition. From new records in athletics to a perfectly pitched softball game and a full medal set in diving from a third generation Canada Games athlete, spectators had much to cheer about during the first week of the 2017 Canada Summer Games.
In Week 2, several record-setting times were achieved in the pool and a new record was set for the number of medals won at one Canada Games. Ontario swimmer Hanna Hendersen won 11 medals, surpassing the 9-medal performance of Albertan Ray Betuzzi established at the 2005 Canada Games in Regina. Alberta’s Cole Pratt along with Ontario’s Graysen Bernard also broke the record with 10 medals, becoming the most decorated male athletes in a single edition of the Canada Games.
Host province's Team Manitoba also set a new record-high for medals won at the Canada Games with 42, soaring past the previous record of 35 medals.
2017 Games raise the bar for attendance
- Over the course of two weeks of competition and ceremonies 150,000 spectators embraced the excitement of the Games;
- The gold medal baseball game between Manitoba and Saskatchewan set a new U17 national championship record with 6,800 passionate fans in attendance at Shaw Park;
- Over the first week of competition more than 1.5M Canadians tuned in to some portion of Canada Games coverage on TSN/RDS;
- There were 544,522 total webcast views over two weeks across 90 countries.
The Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Canada Games Festival was a hub for athletes, spectators and visitors who were looking for a place to gather after competition. The Festival celebrated the many unique facets of Canadian culture by showcasing professional artists from across Canada.
More than 15,000 people passed through the Festival grounds per day on average to enjoy the beautiful weather and outstanding music. The MacDon Family Zone at Parks Canada Place featured a variety of fun, recreational activities for children and young families including the Vancouver Aquarium’s Aquavan to hoop dancing workshops, Icelandic Games and a virtual reality experience to mark Canada’s 150th birthday.
Sadly, the Canada Games Flame will go out tonight, but the spirit of The Hottest Summer in Half a Century and the many legacies that have been achieved will remain for many, many years.