August 12, 2021

By: Lauren Lim

Did you know that the Visit Oakville Tourism Ambassador positions are made possible every year thanks to funding from the Canada Summer Jobs program?

Anita Anand and her team were a big help in acquiring this year’s funding, and, being an Oakville resident herself, she was kind enough to give us a little insight into her Oakville tourism musts!

Keep scrolling to read the full Q&A:

Many residents have been searching for new ways to explore Oakville’s natural spaces. What’s your favourite outdoor experience? 

We are so lucky in Oakville to have such a wide variety of outdoor spaces. My favourite way to enjoy the outdoors is simply taking a walk or a bike ride on one of our trails. Like many others, I walked and ran more during the pandemic and it’s something I will continue to do. I often bring my dogs along the trails with me!

Oakville is a town rich in history and art, where do you go when you’re looking to explore Oakville’s cultural scene?

The Oakville Public Library, Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts and Oakville Historical Society are great places to start. All three have done an excellent job of providing the community with virtual cultural experiences throughout the pandemic. I’m really looking forward to attending a live show at the Centre for Performing Arts once it’s safe to do so. In the meantime, it’s worthwhile to take a stroll through Bronte, Kerr Village, and downtown Oakville to visit local organizations.

We could all use a bit of fun with family these days. What do you suggest?

Bronte Creek Provincial Park is perfect for families looking for a fun getaway close to home. The park has something for everyone, from camping and hiking to farm animals and disc golf. While they aren’t currently leading any of their guided activities, I’m looking forward to resuming some of the fun activities like the Maple Syrup Festival.

As a long-time resident of Oakville, you must have some special places you enjoy. What do you consider a hidden gem in Oakville? (Warning: once you share it, it may not be so hidden anymore).

Oakville has so many hidden gems. One of my favourites is Gairloch Gardens. It’s such a peaceful place to take a walk and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

Oakville’s miles of waterfront are a key attraction for many coming into town. What’s your favourite way to enjoy the water?

We are incredibly fortunate to have the beautiful Lake Ontario waterfront. My favourite way to enjoy the water is going out for a paddle. I took up paddleboarding a few years ago, and it very quickly became one of my favourite summer activities.

We pride ourselves on being Instagram-ready. What/where is your favourite spot to take photos?

My favourite spot to take photos is Tannery Park. The waterfront views are picturesque.

We are all looking forward to welcoming our friends and family back to town. Can you recommend a few things we should do with them?

When we safely begin to welcome guests back into our community, it’s important that we support our local restaurants and shops. Whether it’s Bronte, Kerr Village, or downtown Oakville, there are so many incredible businesses that need our support. I’m really looking forward to enjoying a meal at my favourite local restaurants.

The local tourism community is beginning to recover. (Hotel amenities, theatres, indoor dining re-open!) Any words of wisdom/support for those businesses?

I know that the pandemic has been difficult for a number of industries. I am so inspired by the many ways that these businesses have managed to successfully pivot and continue serving their customers in unique ways. There are a number of supports available at the federal level for small businesses including the Canada Recovery Rehiring Program, Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, and the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program, to name a few. If you have any questions about these programs, don’t hesitate to reach out to my office.

Last question. What would you say to people considering a visit to Oakville?

Oakville is a friendly and beautiful town. Come and visit when it’s safe to do so– my bet is that you won’t want to leave!

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