2021 Canada Summer Games in Niagara have been postponed until 2022 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
After consulting with the Niagara Region, the Province of Ontario and the Federal Government, the Canada Games Council (CGC) and the 2021 Canada Games Host Society decided to postpone the event.
Given the uncertainty created by the ongoing global health crisis, the decision to delay the Games was made to ensure the health and safety of all athletes, coaches, staff, volunteers and spectators.
Organisers would also have been unlikely to deliver the sport competitions and cultural events to a high standard.
“All of our athletes, coaches and volunteers are top of mind for us in deciding to postpone the Games,” said Canada Games Council Board chair Evan Johnston.
“No doubt this decision will be disappointing for those who have been training and preparing for the 2021 Games, but we hope to find their understanding and support.
“We made this difficult decision now, after careful consideration, to protect the health of Canadians and give all stakeholders more time to adjust their preparations.
“We will be reviewing options for new dates for the Canada Summer Games to take place during the summer of 2022 in the Niagara Region.”
No decision has been made yet on the new dates for the Canada Summer Games, but both the CGC and the Niagara Host Society are aiming for the rescheduled event to take place during the summer of 2022.
Both organisations are due to continue to monitor developments relating to the pandemic and will safeguard the health of all participants, staff and volunteers.
Held every two years, alternating between winter and summer, the Canada Games is the country’s largest multi-sport event and is designed for amateur athletes.
More than 5,000 participants and 4,000 volunteers were expected to take part in the next edition in the Niagara Region.
“Postponing the Games certainly wasn’t an easy decision, nor one that we took lightly, but we felt it was the right choice to make,” said Doug Hamilton, chair of the 2021 Canada Games Host Society.
“In all likelihood, moving ahead with the Canada Summer Games in 2021 would have prevented us from hosting the Games’ sport competitions and cultural events in the way that they were originally envisioned.
“By delaying the Games to the summer of 2022, we hope to give Games participants a greater opportunity to maximise their experience, while also ensuring that Niagara can realise the full potential of hosting Canada’s largest multi-sport event.”