Summit plans to get Toronto-Algonquin Greenway rolling
By Sue Tiffin
It’s always important to celebrate your achievements along the way of a long project, said Pamela Marsales, Toronto-Algonquin Greenway co-ordinator, on Sept. 17 at the Rails End Gallery and Arts Centre as she announced the TAG Summit being hosted to bring inaugural partners’ of the international sustainable travel route together.
The concept for the hike-bike-paddle route, which incorporates 11 distinct components including six rail trails, a canoe route and an excursion train between Toronto and Algonquin Park, has been in development since 2013, notably beginning at the Rails End Gallery where Marsales introduced the summit event plans last week.
“[The Toronto to Algonquin Greenway] flows between the CN Tower in Toronto and the moose in Algonquin Park, through all kinds of TAG towns, villages, hamlets and the city of Peterborough in between,” she said. “TAG Summit 2019 will be the inaugural gathering of all the potential partners and champions all the way along the TAG route.”
Held on Nov. 3 and 4 at Sir Sam’s Ski and Ride, the event will feature a social night for food, craft beer and fun and a day of “big ideas,” including guest speaker Eric Weis, former director of greenway development of the East Coast Greenway Alliance, a 3,000-mile biking and walking trail that leads from Maine to Florida, and Kevin Callan, author and media personality known as “The Happy Camper,” who helped to design and test the canoe portion of the TAG route. A seven-minute short film of filmmaker Rodney Fuentes’s four-day bike journey along the route will be shown.
“Not only will this bring awareness of the Haliburton Highlands to attendees of this summit but this event will help us showcase Haliburton as an innovator in sustainable tourism to a wide audience through the partners that will be attending the summit,” said Marsales, who expects upwards of 300 people representing individuals, organizations, agencies, businesses, community initiatives, municipalities and local, regional, provincial and federal governments will be invited to the event.
The summit will wrap up with the signing of the TAG alliance declaration, which Marsales said would transition the TAG initiative from “being a Made-in-Haliburton project to all of these champions, agencies, municipalities all along the route taking ownership.”
“And forevermore, in 10 years, 20 years, 50 years, people can look back at that moment in time and those photographs and say that’s when Toronto-Algonquin Greenway alliance first started,” she said. “Pretty exciting it’s happening in Haliburton Highlands.”
For more information, visit www.Toronto-AlgonquinGreenway.ca or visit Toronto-Algonquin Greenway on Facebook.