Skip To Navigation

Skip To Content

The Cultural Capitals of Canada Program

The Government of Canada announced on May 31, 2002 the creation of Cultural Capitals of Canada. This national program recognizes and supports municipalities that already demonstrate support for arts, culture and heritage as integral to community life. The designation “Cultural Capital” is awarded to cities demonstrating the ability to celebrate and build a legacy for arts and culture, and also demonstrating a good track record of past achievements. Submissions for the award must contain plans for an ambitious program that can be realistically achieved within the limitations imposed by the size and resources of the city.

Edmonton is honoured and excited to receive this prestigious award and be designated the 2007 Cultural Capital of Canada. Edmonton’s proposal was successful over those of several other cities, including Montreal. Cities previously awarded the cultural capital of Canada designation are:

2003 Vancouver
2004 Regina
2005 Toronto
2006 Saskatoon

Currently, the maximum amount that can be awarded to a city designated as Cultural Capital is $2,000,000. In addition to this amount, the City of Edmonton is contributing $667,000 for the celebration.

To qualify for the major award, a city must have a population of at least 125,000. However, within the Cultural Capital of Canada Program the designation and funds may also be given to smaller cities meeting the criteria. For 2007, such designations were awarded to Comox Valley (British Columbia), Moose Jaw (Saskatchewan), Baie-Saint-Paul (Quebec) and Wendake (Quebec).

Edmonton’s Cultural Capital Program

Edmonton wants to deliver the best ever Cultural Capitals of Canada Program by engaging people in every corner of our city. We want everyone to know, everywhere, that Edmonton is the Cultural Capital of Canada. As a result of a successful Cultural Capital year we also want to leave an enduring and positive legacy for the people of Edmonton.

In Edmonton arts, culture and heritage play a vital and ever expanding role in supporting and sustaining our community — a community shaped by bold determination, a make up your mind and go for it mentality, and a love for people, arts, culture, heritage and community.

Benefits to Edmonton:

Edmonton’s designation as Cultural Capital of Canada recognizes and validates our tradition of excellence in arts and culture.

Enhanced arts and culture through the projects and programming we are delivering will increase Edmonton’s profile as Festival City, a centre of arts and cultural icons, and an oasis for creativity, innovation, exploration and achievement. We are the capital city of Alberta; now we have been singled out as the 2007 Cultural Capital of Canada.

Through Edmonton’s Cultural Capital program theme “Building Connections” we will strengthen connections with other communities and share cultural experiences.

The Cultural Capital designation enables our city and community to promote and invest more in arts and culture.

Edmonton – the 2007 Cultural Capital of Canada.
Building Connections to arts and culture for all Edmontonians.

Why Edmonton?

Edmonton has always been the fertile spot of the prairies where there seems to be a propensity to produce outstanding arts and culture. Perhaps this comes from the diversity of community, perhaps it is from the brilliance of the light permeating from the aurora borealis, or perhaps it is just in our genes.