Wasaga Beach Economic Development Newsletter - October 15th, 2021
Information, News & Resources
Economic Development Office
What Is In this Issue?
  • Ontario's COVID-19 Vaccine Certificate App
  • CLOSING and NEW Funding Programs
  • Town Urges Province To Allow Greater Capacity in Restaurants
  • Town of Wasaga Beach Halloween Events
  • Support Local Coupon Book
  • Congratulations and Welcome to Wasaga Beach! - Ribbon Cuttings
  • Wasaga Sundaes Wrap Up
  • Plus more resources and news!
Enhanced COVID-19 Vaccine Certificate with QR Code and Verify Ontario App Available for Download Starting October 15

In advance of October 22, the Ontario government is making the enhanced vaccine certificate with official QR code and the free, made-in Ontario verification app, Verify Ontario, available for download. Together, these tools will make it easier, more secure and convenient for individuals to provide proof of vaccination where required to do so, and for businesses and organizations to verify vaccine certificates while protecting people’s privacy.

Starting October 18 at 6:00 a.m., the portal will open for any individual to download their enhanced vaccine certificate, regardless of their birth month. Individuals can also call the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900 to have their enhanced vaccine certificate emailed or mailed to them.

People can save the electronic version of their vaccine certificate with a QR code to their phone or print a paper copy. Businesses must accept both electronic and paper versions. In addition, while the current vaccine receipt without a QR code remains valid and will continue to be accepted, the province is encouraging individuals to download their enhanced vaccine certificate with a QR code as an easier, more secure and convenient way to have their proof of vaccination verified. Ontarians will need to continue to show a piece of identification with their name and date of birth along with their proof of vaccination when visiting select businesses and organizations.

Town Urges Province To Allow Greater Capacity in Restaurants

Mayor Nina Bifolchi has written Premier Doug Ford asking the province to allow greater capacity inside restaurants.

Halloween Registration - Pumpkin Trail & Halloween Through Town

Do you love to decorate for Halloween?! Do you want to showcase your businesses (or home!) this Halloween for a chance to win great prizes?! Register now (before October 22) to be featured on the Halloween Through Town - Digital Self Guided Tour Map! Please email events to register! 

What about Pumpkin Carving?! Do you want to showcase your carved creations on our Pumpkin Trail?! Register by emailing events before October 22nd and get a Free* Pumpkin to Carve. Then drop it off to us to feature on the trail. Please email us to register! Already have pumpkins? Great, bring them to us on November 1st before noon to be featured on the Trail and for a chance to win Great Prizes! *Limited quantity available.

Support Local Coupon Book

Last month, the Town of Wasaga Beach Support Local Coupon Book was distributed to homes and businesses across Wasaga Beach. The book features business deals, discounts and support local information.

Interested in participating next year? Contact us today to be added to the list!
Congratulations and Welcome to Wasaga Beach!

In the past two months, Council attended seven grand opening ribbon cuttings for new or relocated businesses here in Wasaga Beach. Congratulations to De Palma and Associates, Starbuds Cannabis, Value Buds, Cannabis Cove, Sierra's Mexican Cabana, Metamorphosis Centre for Change and Eat, Sleep, Grow & Repeat! See photos below.

If you would like to invite a member of the Wasaga Beach town council to attend an event, official openings, ribbon cutting ceremony, or if you would like to request congratulatory certificates, town pins or the raising of a community flag, contact the Executive Assistant to the mayor and council who will be happy to assist you.
Wasaga Sundaes!

Throughout this past summer, Wasaga Sundaes occurred every Sunday throughout the summer from July 11th to September 5th. This event featured a that displayed a trail of the featured ice cream treats to explore. We encouraged residents and visitors to complete the trail and taste them all!

After participants purchased a sundae on a Sunday, they enter to win great prizes and vote for your favorite sundae in Wasaga Beach. This year, Funnel Tunnel was the winner of the Favorite Wasaga Sundaes Sundae!

Interested in participating next year? Send an email expressing your interest to [email protected].
Contact Val Dickson here or visit the website here to learn more.
South Georgian Bay Tourism Offers FREE Business Membership for Wasaga Beach Tourism Businesses

Have you registered for your FREE membership yet? The Town of Wasaga Beach has partnered with SGBT and the South Georgian Bay municipalities to offer complimentary business memberships for the entire South Georgian Bay tourism industry in 2021.

Register your tourism business to take advantage of this free unique marketing opportunity. This is your chance to be part of the South Georgian Bay Tourism Association. Register for free today using the following link.

#Pledge to Support Local

Spend your money where it matters the most. By supporting your local businesses you support your community.

Your dollars stay in the community and help local jobs, development, community culture and create more walkable and livable neighbourhoods. The pandemic has hit us all deeply and the effects continue to rattle our business community.

Business & Economic News Highlights
ACT NOW: Digital Main Street - $2,500 Grants and More Free Support

Time is running out to claim your Digital Transformation Grant from Digital Main Street! This $2,500 grant is available to eligible and qualifying small businesses to enable a digital transformation. The grants are now open to more businesses than ever before and you no longer have to be a “downtown” or "main street" business. If your business has a physical location you might be in the running! 
Please note: previous DTG recipients are not eligible.
Connect with your Digital Service Squad for an initial 30 min consultation to learn more, confirm eligibility, and to get started on your application process!

Ontario Tourism Recovery Program - APPLY TODAY

This week the portal for applications to the Ontario Tourism Recovery Program opened and we continue to offer help and assistance to members with their applications. If you require support with your application, please don’t hesitate to contact us here at Town Hall.

The Ontario Tourism Recovery Program (OTRP) supports eligible, Ontario-based, tourism businesses in the for-profit attractions, accommodations and transportation sectors that have been hardest hit by COVID-19. OTRP is a competitive, application-based grant program supporting private sector tourism businesses that are significant drivers to their regional tourism economies.

Applications will be assessed using the funding and assessment criteria noted below. Funding will be awarded based on score. Meeting eligibility requirements does not guarantee funding.

Program funding will help successful applicants prepare to re-open safely, develop adaptative and innovative tourism products, retain and create tourism jobs, and support tourism recovery in their region and throughout Ontario. Successful applicants will be able to use funding for expenditures such as:

reopening and operating expenses, such as staff salaries and maintenance

health and safety measures to support the safety of visitors and workers

attracting visitors through tourism product and experience improvements and marketing

For full details of eligible program expenditures, check out How to use your funding if successful.

 CanExport SME Funding

CANEXPORT SMEs PROGRAM REOPENING : The program is now accepting new applications for a limited period from October 12, 2021, 09:00 AM EDT to October 29, 2021, 05:00 PM EDT. The program is accepting applications for projects starting in this fiscal year only (2021-2022). Please note that CanExport SMEs is very competitive and the budget is limited. Only a limited number of projects will be approved.

The program will begin accepting new applications in January 2022 for projects starting after April 1, 2022.Small and medium sized companies may access up to $50,000 in funding to assist with international market development activities. They cover up to 50% of costs for export marketing of your products and services in international markets where you have little or no sales.

RTO7 Brings Back PPE COVID-19 Recovery Fund 

In light of current requirements around verifying vaccination passports, continued indoor masking, etc. (and popular demand), RTO7 is pleased to bring back the PPE reimbursement funding for tourism operators and businesses in BruceGreySimcoe. Every little bit helps, and this is a very easy win if you’ve incurred PPE expenses!
How it works:
RTO7 will reimburse a maximum of $1,000 before tax towards your purchase of PPE (defined as masks, sanitizer, shields, costs incurred to adhere to social distancing, touchless payments, new technology, increased cleaning, sanitization, etc.), retroactive to April 1, 2021.

The Mayor Salute & Chamber Mix n' Mingle

Join us for an exciting special event! You're invited to the Mayor Salute & Chamber Mix n' Mingle on Thursday, October 21st at 5:30pm on Zoom during small business week. Hosted by The Wasaga Beach Chamber of Commerce, Mayors and Chamber Leaders from the region are invited to speak as part of a panel. The speaker panel will address how their town and business community is managing through the pandemic, the initiatives employed to support local business as well as visions for the future.

This is an opportunity to meet new people and join forces to strengthen our local region as well as discover ways to collaborate as we all continue to make our way through the "new normal" brought on by the pandemic.
Register today here for this very special event.
Marc Petitpas, business strategist, coach, and author of The 50 Year-Old Millennial will also be joining us as our Keynote Speaker. Register today here. and mark your calendar to find out about the leadership gap exposed by millennials, how to close it and reshape the way you look at work.
Do you have your ticket to the 2021 Virtual Xcelerate Summit?

The Xcelerate Summit is approaching fast and the team behind the event have put together an incredible line up of over 20 talks that take place over a 4 day period. Browse the speaker line up here

This virtual conference brings together the area’s most prominent business leaders, and stellar keynote speakers. Take some time to work on your business. You will not want to miss this event!

36 hours, 4 days and 20+ talks w/ expert & inspiring speakers

October 19 - 22, 2021

WEBINAR ALERT: Vaccine Certificate and Workplace Vaccination Policies
October 19th from 11am to 12pm

This webinar will provide information and resources for businesses implementing (or interested in implementing) vaccine certificate and/or workplace vaccination policies, highlight the opportunities and challenges of proof of vaccination policies for tourism and hospitality businesses, highlight critical issues (e.g. legal, ethical, financial) to consider in implementing proof of vaccination for patrons and/or employees, and provide a legal perspective on proof of vaccination policies for patrons and/or employees.

RTO 7 Partnership Programs

Regional Tourism Organization 7 (RTO7) is still accepting applications for the 2021/22 Partnership Program which reflects RTO7’s COVID-19 RECOVERY PLAN 2021/22. In the past, the Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism, & Culture Industries has provided the organization with additional funding, providing matching dollars can be raised from tourism partners. RTO7 will also contribute additional funds from its base funding towards these partnerships. 

Free Training for BruceGreySimcoe Businesses

RTO7 has partnered with Typsy and OTEC to provide stakeholders in BruceGreySimcoe with absolutely free online learning tailored to meet your business needs and objectives, as well as personal goals.  

RTO 7 Recruitment Implementation Program

Leverage business operating expenses to access this program designed to offer additional support to BruceGreySimcoe tourism stakeholders in their workforce recruitment efforts, using social media.  Learn more and see if you qualify.

New Updates to the Ontario Business Registry

In case you didn't know, the NEW Ontario Business Registry will launch on October 19, 2021, making it easier, simpler, and more affordable for millions of businesses and not-for-profit corporations to interact with the government.
The new online registry will replace outdated technology, providing people across the province with direct access to government services 24 hours a day, 365 days a year for the first time ever.
As the launch date approaches, Service Ontario will continue to make updates to their main page here.
Exploring Exporting: Exporting 101

Ever wonder about exporting your products or services, but don’t know where to start? Join us on October 26th at 2 p.m. for Exploring Exporting: Exporting 101. Learn from provincial ministry officials about all of the background you need to know before you start shipping your products or services globally. 

Register here.

Safe Travels Stamp Administered By TIAO

Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) has been chosen by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) to administer the Safe Travels Stamp in Canada. The Safe Travels Stamp is an international symbol designed to allow travelers to recognize governments and companies around the world, which have adopted health and hygiene, standardized protocols – so consumers can experience ‘Safe Travels’.

Town of Wasaga Beach
Since the beginning of COVID-19, the Town of Wasaga Beach has been making every effort to support you and your business. As we now look towards careful re-opening and recovery, we have compiled over 150 special resources here to help your business source COVID-related information and funding.
Are you eager to launch a new business or expand your existing business in Wasaga Beach?

We have retail, commercial and industrial space, business supports, workshops, one-on-one counselling, and information about financial incentives to support your venture and help it thrive. On this page you will find local, regional, provincial and national resources to help you start or grow a business.

Reach out to Economic
Development today!

In addition to sourcing and sharing these resources for you, our Economic Development Team is always ready and available to assist you and your business. Help us to help you. We welcome and encourage you to contact us with your questions, comments or ideas - we will do our best to steer you in the best direction as you look to start, grow or support your business - for today and tomorrow.
*Disclaimer: The Town of Wasaga Beach is unable to provide any warranty regarding the accuracy or completeness of third-party submissions. Distribution of these items does not imply an endorsement of the views, information or services mentioned.