OPG Winter Festival of Lights will Expand Programming for 35th Season

Festival expansion will have many benefits for the local community

Niagara Falls, ON – The Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights will celebrate its 35th season by unveiling new lighting and expanding its special events. The improvements will be made possible by city funding of $300,000 which was approved at Tuesday nights City Council meeting. New interactive lighting will be added to the WFOL 8km illumination route, plus the Festival has big plans to expand upon events like Opening Ceremonies and Deck the Falls Holiday Walking Tour.

“As a long time volunteer, I am looking forward to the next few years with the Festival of Lights”, says Laurel Cote a volunteer with the Festival. “This festival has grown immensely in the past two years and will continue to blossom.  It will be an exciting time not only for the festival staff and volunteers but also for the entire city and its many visitors.”

Throughout the Festival’s two and a half month-long season, WFOL hosts family friendly programming encouraging people to get outside and to enjoy events and stunning illuminations. Touring the lights has proven to brighten the spirits of attendees, getting visitors in the holiday spirit and provides a festive outing for families and couples to enjoy.

“Not only will this funding allow us to draw more visitors to Niagara Falls but at the same time we can expand our programming which provides locals with a world class festival right here in Niagara”, said Tina Myers, Executive Director of the Festival.

Data from the Festival’s 2016 Economic Impact Report showed that the Festival had a significant benefit to the local economy during the tourism shoulder season. Overall visitor spending was up 7% from the previous year, $59.7M in 2015 to $63.9M in 2016. Attendance also increased in 2016 by 129,000 visits for a total attendance of 1.33 million with 80% of attendees residing more than 40km away.

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About the Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights
The Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights transforms Niagara Falls into a winter wonderland with millions of sparkling lights and breathtaking illuminations. The Festival is preparing for its biggest year yet, it’s 35th season will run from November 18, 2017 to January 31, 2018. The eight kilometre Festival illumination route runs along the Niagara Parkway, past the Falls, into Dufferin Islands and the surrounding districts of Fallsview Boulevard, Clifton Hill District, Clifton Hill and Lundy’s Lane. The Festival’s iconic lighting displays, special events and attractions have become a tradition for more than one million visitors each year. Make it your winter tradition! For festival details please visit www.wfol.com.

 Ontario Power Generation (OPG) is proud to be part of the Niagara Falls community and the Winter Festival of Lights. For more than 90 years, OPG’s Sir Adam Beck hydroelectric stations in Niagara Falls have generated clean, renewable power. Today, more than 99 per cent of the electricity OPG produces is free of emissions that cause smog or climate change. For more information please visit www.opg.com.

 For more information about the Ontario Power Generation Winter Festival of Lights:
www.WFOL.com | Facebook: WinterFestivalofLights | Twitter: @WinterFestival
Contact: Tina Myers, Executive Director, (905) 374-1616, tina@wfol.com

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