June 21, 2010
SAINTE-MARIE-DE-KENT (CNB) - Federal and provincial officials joined residents of the Sainte-Marie-de-Kent region on Saturday, June 19, to celebrate the grand opening of a new multi-purpose exhibition facility - Expo Kent Centre.
Premier Shawn Graham and Senator Rose-May Poirier took part in the day-long community celebration.
"Today's celebration of the new multi-purpose facility truly shows that our government can work with local organizations and other levels of government to help better our communities," said Graham. "Our investment will ensure this facility continues to play a vital role in the life of the community of Sainte-Marie-de-Kent and Kent County."
"Our government, through Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency's (ACOA) investment in the Expo Kent Centrr, will help strengthen the local economy and region's tourism industry," said Poirier. "Our government is committed to supporting projects that advance long-term economic opportunities for communities such as Sainte-Marie-de-Kent."
Poirier spoke on behalf of National Revenue Minister Keith Ashfield, who is also minister of ACOA and minister for the Atlantic Gateway.
"The board of directors, community leaders and the many volunteers of the Kent County Agricultural Fair Association are very excited about the opening of the new Expo Kent Centre," said Chris Carter, president of the Kent County Agricultural Fair Association. "The new facility will not only accommodate our needs during Expo Kent this Aug. 26-29, but will also be available for Kent County and the surrounding areas to use year-round as a multi-purpose venue for events of all shapes and sizes."
Expo Kent Centre is located on the fairgrounds in Sainte-Marie-de-Kent. The facility covers 2,218 sq. m (24,640 sq.ft.) and houses a show area, office space, washrooms and a canteen. The centre features barrier-free access and a seating capacity of 700. The site also includes a new outdoor picnic area and parking space.
The federal government contributed $675,000 through ACOA's Innovative Communities Fund, while the provincial government invested $975,000 through the Regional Development Corporation. The Kent County Agricultural Fair Association invested $150,000.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Bruce MacFarlane, Regional Development Corporation, 506-444-4606; Paul C.J. LeBlanc, communications, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency - New Brunswick, 506-452-3310; Chris Carter, 2010 president, Kent County Agricultural Fair Association, 506-955-2631.