Ontario Supports New Vacation Destination in Kenora

Published on October 14, 2021


KENORA – The Ontario government is providing $200,000 to help establish Kenora Bed ‘n’ Bale Inc., a new vacation destination in the City of Kenora. The funding will support the local tourism and hospitality sectors, strengthen the regional economy and help create new jobs.

“Before COVID-19, we had a vibrant tourism sector here in Northwestern Ontario, so it is crucial that we continue to look for ways to support our local businesses,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry. “Today’s investment directly contributes to our northern tourism industry’s sustainability.”

Kenora Bed ‘n’ Bale Inc. is a 15-acre farm tucked into the boreal forest, adjacent to Rabbit Lake. Within walking distance of downtown, the resort caters to visitors looking for a rural feel in the city. Accommodations include sites for recreational vehicles, rustic cabins and rental campers, as well as horse pens. Some of the resort activities offered include a homestead tour, yoga with farm animals and fishing and hiking. Funding for this project is being delivered through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC).

"The NOHFC grant was a game changer," says Laura Loohuizen, Co-owner and Manager of Kenora Bed 'n' Bale. "The funds enabled us to develop an agri-tourism destination to draw new visitors to Kenora, many of whom would otherwise have bypassed the area. We found that the pandemic rekindled interest in local, ethical, sustainable food production, and our place provides education, entertainment and therapeutic visits for tourists and residents alike. We are very grateful to Minister Rickford, the Ontario government and City of Kenora for supporting our vision of a different kind of tourism for Northwestern Ontario."

The NOHFC promotes economic prosperity across Northern Ontario by providing financial assistance to projects—big and small, rural and urban—that stimulate recovery, growth, job creation and skills development. Since June 2018, the NOHFC has invested more than $369 million in 3,551 projects in Northern Ontario, leveraging more than $1.3 billion in investment and creating or sustaining over 5,300 jobs.

“The last 19 months have called attention to just how critical Ontario’s tourism businesses are to the success of our economy and to the hard-working people who earn their living in this important industry,” said Lisa MacLeod, Minister of Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Culture Industries. “Our government’s commitment to the tourism industry, and tourism businesses in particular, is an essential step in making sure the sector can re-build and resume its role as an engine for the province’s economy and regional employment.”


Quick Facts

  • On February 11, 2021, the Ontario government launched new and improved NOHFC programs that support more projects in rural northern communities and make it easier for more people and businesses to apply. The programs target existing and emerging markets, provide more work opportunities for Indigenous people and address the skilled labour shortage in the North.
  • The Ontario government recently launched the Ontario Tourism Recovery Program, a $100-million grant program to support established Ontario-based tourism businesses in the attractions, accommodations and transportation sectors. Applications are due by November 10, 2021.