Ottawa Welcomes the World launchPublished on January 26, 2017

  • Performers entertained guests at the launch
    Photo by: Robyn Campbell

  • Mayor Jim Watson
    Photo by: Robyn Campbell

  • Mango stew served at the launch
    Photo by: Robyn Campbell

A celebration of culture took place on January 25th at the Horticulture Building, as the Ottawa 2017 Bureau and Mayor Jim Watson partnered with CIBC to announce that 75 countries will collaborate to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary with Ottawa Welcomes the World. 

“Ottawa Welcomes the World is a wonderful way for residents and visitors to discover and connect with our rich multicultural heritage,” said Mayor Jim Watson.

Ottawa Welcomes the World is a celebration of culture and diversity, as international partners, high commissioners, and embassies come together to showcase what makes their culture unique through 47 innovative events and activities at Lansdowne Park from March to December 2017.

The launch had one clear theme: cultural diversity! Lansdowne’s Horticulture Building was bursting with life as spectators were treated to music, cuisine, and dances from all around the world. The audience got to experience salsa dancers, a 5-piece mariachi band, and Chinese lion dancers, all while enjoying piri piri chicken and mango stew. Ottawa Welcomes the World proved Ottawa to be a cultural mosaic.

“Canada is a country that believes in diversity and inclusion. Let us create an example for the rest of the world. We are stronger because of our differences," said MP Karen McCrimmon.

The launch was just a taste of the incredible spectacle of culture, diversity, and inclusivity that Ottawa Welcomes the World will present this year.

All events will be held at the Horticulture Building and Aberdeen Pavilion, free of charge, with minimal fees for sampling of food and beverages, and authentic artisanal items for purchase.

To view the full schedule for Ottawa Welcomes the World and learn more about the presenting countries, visit

Robyn Campbell

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