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September 22, 2004
Media Advisory/Photo Opportunity: Champlain's journeys through Ontario celebrated in Toronto's Étienne Brûlé Park
Date: Thursday, September 23, 2004 starting at 2 p.m.

Location: Étienne Brûlé Park, Etobicoke

Special Guests:
The Honourable Madeleine Meilleur, Ontario Minister of Culture and Minister
Responsible for Francophone Affairs
Philipe Delacroix, Consulate General of France in Toronto
Bill Saundercook, Toronto City Councillor

Photo Opportunity:
Unveiling of interpretive signs to commemorate Champlain's journeys through
Ontario on the 400th anniversary of permanent French settlement in North America

Contact: Gordon Pim, Marketing and Communications Coordinator,
416-325-1484, e-mail:

The Ontario Heritage Foundation and the City of Toronto will unveil three
interpretive signs in Étienne Brûlé Park to commemorate Samuel de Champlain's
journeys through Ontario and the beginning of the French presence in North
America. The park beside the Humber River commemorates Brûlé, one of
Champlain's protégés in the age of exploration. His story is part of the larger
one of Champlain and the First Nations people they met in 17th-century North

Samuel de Champlain (c. 1570-1635) was an important explorer, cartographer,
administrator and founder of New France. He arrived in Canada in 1603 and spent
most of the rest of his life here, advancing French commercial and colonial
interests. Although his work focused on the Saint Lawrence and Atlantic
regions, he spent time in what is now Ontario searching for a route to the
Orient and strengthening ties with the First Nations.

These interpretive panels help us understand the impact of the "Father of New
France" and his journeys through Ontario. As part of the program of activities
surrounding Champlain 400 - commemorating the 400th anniversary of the first
French settlements in North America - these panels enhance our knowledge of the
exploration that was undertaken by these intrepid explorers. Champlain's maps
and diaries served as building blocks in the advance of European knowledge,
exploration and settlement of the continent.

The Ontario Heritage Foundation is a not-for-profit agency of the Government of
Ontario, dedicated to identifying, preserving, protecting and promoting
Ontario's heritage.



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