We are entirely blown away and humbled by the support we have received, and these funds, an extraordinary outpouring of support, will get us well on our way to leveraging more government funds and getting the project started soon.
Our campaign officially closed on Saturday, January 09, but we are leaving the FundRazr site open for another week as there are still donations coming in! Click on the poster to go to the campaign page if you are looking to donate or you can click the button at the bottom of the page. If you prefer to send a donation directly, you can do so by Electronic Money Transfer (EMT) to our email address or by mail to AlgomaTrad, 340 McKinnon Side Rd., Desbarats, ON P0R1E0
If you need more information about this huge project, please read on – you will find information as well as photos, videos, and other links to help you see the whole AlgomaTrad picture…and we invite you to contact us at anytime if you have a question!
The AlgomaTrad Centre – the vision and the plan
In 2016, AlgomaTrad and its supporters acquired the 50-acre former Algoma Music Camp property on St. Joseph Island to develop the AlgomaTrad Centre. Since then, AlgomaTrad has created a comprehensive business plan and produced drawing designs (see below) for a $3 million upgrade of the infrastructure on the site, which will include winterizing the main building, adding a modernized kitchen facility large enough for workshops, building a signature 4-season concert/dance hall with studios, installing a proper septic system, and upgrading the grounds for permaculture and accessibility.
We have already secured a significant funding commitment from the provincial government, including a $1 million grant from the Northern Ontario Heritage Foundation Corporation and have pending applications for several federal infrastructure funding programs. All these grants are conditional on AlgomaTrad raising its portion of the funds for the project.
AlgomaTrad has the Infrastructure project underway. We have built a 30×60 timber-frame Pavilion with funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation and over a $100k of in-kind services and donations from supporters.
AlgomaTrad has also worked with local schools and dedicated volunteers to revitalize the Two Tree River that flows through the property by planting over 1700 native trees and shrubs and installing fencing, thanks to a grant from the Ontario Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund.
This year, 2020, we have forged ahead despite the pandemic and initiated a Permaculture assessment of the property. We have also received funding to plant 7,000 trees at the Centre in the Spring of 2021 through the federal 50 Million Trees program.
Besides being a beautiful place where both local people and visitors to St. Joseph Island can immerse themselves in unique cultural experiences and hands-on learning, the Centre will benefit the region through tourism, local employment, support for local farms and businesses, and as a catalyst for new arts entrepreneurship. To help offset operating costs, the Centre will be available for conventions, weddings, and rental by community and arts organizations.
The development of AlgomaTrad Centre will take time and a lot of effort, but when it is finished it will be a cultural legacy for the Island, the Algoma Region, and the North.
AlgomaTrad: who we are
Founded by Julie Schryer and Pat O’Gorman with the help of parents of local learners, AlgomaTrad hosted its first annual traditional music, dance, and heritage arts Family Camp in 2004 on St. Joseph Island, which is located on the North Shore of Lake Huron in the Algoma Region of Northeastern Ontario. Over its 17-year history as a non-profit, AlgomaTrad has:
- organized over 300 concerts, dances, weekend festivals, and workshops across the Central Algoma Region for over 20,000 participants;
- hosted over 200 musicians, artists, and artisans as performers, instructors, and workshop leaders;
- and partnered with schools, arts organizations, municipalities, and First Nations communities to create hands-on, non-competitive arts and culture experiences.
People of all ages and skill levels have experienced AlgomaTrad’s inclusive and inspiring events and programs with master musicians, dancers, mentors, artists and craftspeople. The organization also raises money for the Nicholas Missere Bursary Fund that has helped hundreds of people to take part in the organization’s programs and events.