More than 40,000 visitors at the Toronto Nautical Festival last weekend had an opportunity to experience what Nova Scotia has to offer. With 100 Nova Scotia industry representatives, entertainers, animators and suppliers, the festival allowed tourism operators to present their products and services to consumers, travel media and tour operators from across Ontario. The event also gave the public the opportunity to stroll the deck of Nova Scotia’s sailing ambassador, Bluenose II. Tourism, Culture and Heritage Minister Bill Dooks said the promotion was successful and productive by all measures. “The response from festival-goers to Nova Scotia’s presence was incredible,” said Mr. Dooks. “This event, along with the presence of Bluenose II, provided an excellent opportunity to promote Nova Scotia and what we have to offer.” This was the festival’s inaugural celebration and Nova Scotia was the presenting sponsor. The Nova Scotia pavilion included dory building, rope making and a Taste of Nova Scotia demonstration on how to properly prepare Nova Scotia seafood. Nova Scotia representatives included Pier 21, Destination Cape Breton, Sherbrooke Village, Antigonish Eastern Shore Tourism Association, Bay Ferries, the 78th Highlanders and Ambassatours Gray Line. “With Bluenose II and the CN Tower in the background, and being in downtown Toronto, this event was incredible and I have never seen anything like it,” said Gary Powell, vice-president of Ambassatours Gray Line. “The attendance and interest in our products exceeded my expectations and will translate into more visitors coming to Nova Scotia as a result of this spectacular event.” Festival visitors were entertained by popular Nova Scotia artists such as the Barra MacNeils, Grand Derangement, Trevor Gould and Eastern Star, Jeremiah Sparks, Shahba Lee, Pam Levy and David Myles.