Representing a wide spectrum of the sport tourism industry in Canada, finalists are drawn from seven different provinces and 20 cities/communities.
The events range from local to national to major international championships and tournaments.
The awards also honour outstanding volunteers and organizations that work to bid, host and stage sport events across Canada.
Nominees from across the country make up the 24 finalists.
“Each one of these finalists has contributed to the over-six-billion-dollar sport tourism industry in Canada,” said Rick Traer, CEO, Canadian Sport Tourism Alliance.
“Through the Prestige award program we are proud to honour the people, the events, the sponsors and the communities who have helped make Canada a world leader in the sport tourism industry.
“It was quite remarkable to see the breadth of nominations from across the country,” he said.
Larry Peach, tourism manager for the Municipality of Clare, says Neal Alderson of Events Nova Scotia nominated the Gran Fondo.
“He has been very supportive at the provincial level for our event,” said Peach.
Clare Warden Ronnie LeBlanc says it is an honour to have the Gran Fondo Baie Sainte-Marie nominated for a national sports award.
“This nomination for Organization of the Year acknowledges all the hard work and dedication of our organizing committee, our many volunteers, as well as the entire community of Clare, which eagerly rolls out the welcome mat for these cyclists. Being nominated nationally, in the same company as larger urban organizations, shows that people are paying attention to what happens in rural Nova Scotia and that is a really good thing to hear,” he said.
The Municipality of Clare event is up against two other organizations for the award: Sport Burnaby and Sport Hosting Vancouver.
Winners will be announced March 21.
The Gran Fondo is a cycling adventure that has seen phenomenal growth since it began in 2015. It is held in late September and cyclists can choose from one of several routes in the region. In 2016 the number of participants doubled to over 800. This year’s event is now open for registrants and will take place Sept. 24.
More about the Gran Fondo Baie Sainte-Marie
For more event information and to register online, click here or visit the Facebook Page.