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Francophone Conference Coming to Grande Prairie

A conference coming to the city will highlight the French diversity in Alberta. The 2018 Meeting of the Francophone and Francophile Cities Network will be held from September 5-7. City Councillor Kevin O’Toole says the annual meeting will attract a large number of people to the area.

“There will be 100 representatives from across North America that will be here to discuss how to support French culture.”

This is the first time the event will be held in western North America. In past years, the event has been held in Louisiana, Moncton, N.B. and Quebec City. O’Toole says the event was designed as a way for the city to show support for French-speaking people.

“We had an opportunity to host it here in the city so we took advantage of it. City Council at the time said yes let make it happen. It’s one of the things the city has taken upon itself to do to promote the French-speaking people in Grande Prairie. Approximately 10 percent of our population is French-speaking.”

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The event brings together governments and representatives from francophone communities to figure out how they can best highlight French culture and tourism in their areas. O’Toole says hosting the meeting here will bring more people to the city who may not have otherwise come here.

“I’ve talked to some of the people that I know that are coming and they plan on spending at least an extra week or two just going around Alberta…Locally there could be up to 100 couples touring Alberta just to see what French language and the French people have here.”

The meeting will be held at the Pomeroy Hotel & Conference Centre and the Montrose Cultural Centre. Tickets are available online or at the door.

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