Durham Region is hosting the 2019 Ontario Parasport Games, from Feb. 8-10. About 350 athletes from across the province will compete in 11 sports and the local economy is expected to benefit from about $500,000 in spending.
Durham chose to bid on the Games because of the proud culture of sport, inclusion and accessibility here in the region. Facilities like WindReach Farm, Grandview Children’s Centre and the Abilities Centre have been instrumental in paving the way toward making Durham Region an inclusive and accessible community, ideally suited to welcome parasport athletes.
The games medal design was recently revealed at the 100-day countown with the winning artist, Jennifer Tewnion, also a parasport athlete. She is an fine arts graduate from McMaster University where she played rugby until being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. The Ajax resident is hoping to compete as a sledge hockey player at the Games.
Glenn Healy and the Highland Creek Pipe Band will lead the athlete parade in the opening ceremonies on Feb. 8. Glenn grew up in Pickering and played goalie for the Pickering Panthers before a 15-year career in the NHL. He won a Stanley Cup with the New York Rangers in 1994. After retiring, Glenn has had a successful broadcasting career and is now the executive director of the NHL Alumni Association. He is also pipe major for the Highland Creek Pipe Band, which has been performing since 1954.