Cultural Strategic Plan - May 2014

The City of Pickering Cultural Strategic Plan sets a vision for the place of arts, culture and heritage in the City and identifies strategic directions for policy, investment, partnerships and programs for 10 years.

Executive Summary

This Cultural Strategic Plan establishes a vision for the place of arts, culture and heritage in the City and strategic directions for policy, investment, and City programs in the next few years. Cultural planning is intended to help the City retain its unique heritage and culture while keeping pace with the demands of the 21st century and globalization. It is also part of the City’s Journey to Sustainability, intended to balance the needs of the environment, the economy, and the social community and achieve sustainable growth.

The research conducted for this plan was wide-ranging and highly detailed. Pickering staff first gathered background information from statistics, historical documents, and other sources to help define Pickering’s cultural make-up, as well as its cultural and heritage assets. The City also canvassed opinion from the community through a telephone survey of Pickering residents; online surveys for community organizations; interviews with members of Council and senior City managers; and focus group sessions with youth and seniors.

The findings revealed a wide array of cultural attractions and opportunities, a high level of cultural diversity, and strong commitment from organizations and individuals to the cultural life of the City. However, the research also identified gaps in support for arts, culture and heritage, some fragmentation of the City’s cultural sector, a need to connect culture and economic development, and barriers preventing the City’s arts, culture and heritage from reaching its full potential.


Pickering has developed this Cultural Strategic Plan to answer the following questions: How can the City of Pickering retain its unique heritage and culture while keeping pace with the demands of the 21st century and globalization? How can the City of Pickering ensure that sustainability (environmental, social and economic) remains at the forefront of the City’s agenda, considered in a integrated, holistic way and held paramount in decision making, not an afterthought?

Arts, culture, and heritage define a community and create a sense of place and belonging. These cultural resources send a clear message to the world about the community – its values, beliefs, and customs. The creation of Pickering’s Cultural Strategic Plan involved; mapping the City’s cultural resources; collecting input from residents and valued partners to define cultural opportunities, priorities, and identity developing a comprehensive, strategic approach to achieve the City’s vision for culture.

The Process

Pickering has a wealth of cultural resources. It is time to map those resources, craft a clear identity for this community, and develop a plan that identifies strategies that will foster our community development.

The City of Pickering Cultural Strategic Plan builds upon existing municipal plans and drew on the cooperation of all departments. The foundation of the City of Pickering Cultural Strategic Plan was community consultation and public input. Great care was taken to incorporate consultation with all levels of municipal government and staff, community stakeholders, and community residents. The information was gathered through various methods:

  • Online surveys were used for community cultural organizations, businesses, and individuals.
  • A telephone survey was used to collect ideas from a random sample of Pickering residents.
  • Interviews were used to gain insight from all members of Council, the Chief Administrative Officer, and all department heads.
  • Focus group sessions were conducted with youth and seniors in Pickering.
  • Regular meetings were conducted with a Community Stakeholders Committee, the members of which represented the heritage, arts, ethno-cultural, business, education, and environment sectors in Pickering. This comprehensive approach has helped ensure that the City of Pickering Cultural Strategic Plan is inclusive and reflects the community’s ideas and values.


Pickering will collaborate with the community to celebrate our cultural diversity, heritage and the arts; to sustain our natural environment; to foster a creative economy; and to strengthen our vibrant neighbourhoods.

Strategic Directions & Recommendations

1. Broaden and deepen city leadership and investment

Expand communications efforts related to cultural resources and opportunities


Cultural Service established the Cultural Portal on to expand, centralize, and simplify the delivery of Cultural initiatives, and recognition of Culture in Pickering.

Sustainability developed and installed sustainability related interpretive signs within many parks, Sustainable Pickering eNewsletter, regular social media posts, dedicated section on website, produce annual Year-in-Review, coordinate a minimum of 6 educational workshops.

Office of the CAO has utilized the City’s social media channels, as well as outdoor digital signs to promote opportunities and resources as it relates to Culture.

Increase the City’s role in supporting and facilitating networking and collaboration among cultural groups

Cultural Services has in place an ongoing call to local community groups to participate in the Community Mentorship Program that is creating Opportunities for Community Organizations to Collaborate & Thrive. Oorganizations interested in developing their event planning skills, that want to share their message and create a lasting impression on the residents of Pickering are encouraged to apply. Successful applicants will partner with a business or community organization and the City event planning team, to plan and execute an activity during a City-operated event.

Place4Arts program encourages local organizations to enhance their space, encourage new interest, and promote culture, by hosting local artists and performers. Integrating Arts & Culture into your current space will expand your reach, create new opportunities, and build upon your current success. Hosting a local artists or performers is an easy way to: connect with your community, enhance and update your brand, make new relationships, create new customers, create a buzz about your business, access City promotional opportunities.

Form a Cultural Advisory Committee made up of staff, Council, and community representation that champions the implementation of the Cultural Plan.


The Cultural Advisory Committee has been in place since 2016 with the following Mandate: The Cultural Advisory Committee (CAC) will assist City staff with the implementation of the City of Pickering Cultural Strategic Plan. The CAC will identify and coordinate opportunities for cultural industries, associations, and the community to engage and provide expertise and input on matters relating to the provision of cultural services in Pickering.

The Goals, Objectives, and Responsibilities of this committee are directly related to the work set out in the Cultural Strategic Plan, as approved by Council on June 16, 2014 as per resolution #247/14, sets a vision for the place of arts, culture and heritage in the City and identifies strategic directions for policy, investment, partnerships and programs for the next 10 years. Annual Work Plans, Reports, and current Agenda / Meetings times of the CAC can be viewed at:

Increase investment in cultural development.


Pickering Museum Village provided the following response: $4,000,000 secured from the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund (Department of Canadian Heritage) in 2019 for the Pickering Heritage & Community Centre. $100,000 secured from the Museum Assistance Program for COVID-19 relief funding in 2020 by the Pickering Museum Village

The Pickering Community Banner Program celebrates the culture, heritage and beauty of our City, and is now an annual budgeted item. The City of Pickering invites Canadian artists of all ages, or artist teams, to create, design and submit artwork to be used for the Community Banner Program.

Appoint a dedicated cultural staff position with the following responsibilities; serve as a champion for the implementation of the Cultural Strategic Plan; play a community development and capacity-building role within the cultural sector in Pickering; support ongoing cultural planning and the integration of culture across departments (the focus of this position would not be on the delivery of cultural programs or services).


Supervisor, Cultural Services position established. 

Coordinator, Cultural Services position established.

Pickering Museum Village provided the following response: Created and filled Supervisor of Museum Services position in 2018

Ensure the Cultural Strategic Plan is well integrated into the City’s five Corporate Priorities
  1. Community Engagement – is the way we communicate, consult, involve and encourage participation from our community. We are going to engage our public.
  2. Corporate Best Practices – to review service delivery options, and administrative processes in a bid to increase City responsiveness to our community stakeholders.
  3. Financial Management – to ensure the financial integrity, accountability, and fiscal sustainability of the City through effective budgeting, financial and purchasing through sound practices and procedures, policy setting, financial reporting and exploring opportunities to increase revenue.
  4. Human Resource Development – to utilize a corporate approach to fulfill organizational needs with relation to recruitment, employee development, retention and succession planning
  5. Sustainable Placemaking – a process to improve the long-term social, environmental, economic and cultural health of the City. It involves two interrelated components: Building a Sustainable City and Living and working in a Sustainable City.


Various objectives and priorities outlined in the Cultural Strategic Plan are Indicators of Sustainability within the Measuring Sustainability Report. The Sustainability Team projects, events and programs directly support elements of the Plan as well. The Year-in-Review updates provide a synopsis of some of the work being undertaken.

Cultural Service established the Cultural Portal on to expand, centralize, and simplify the delivery of Cultural initiatives, and recognition of Culture in Pickering.

Identify leading practices (in Canada and abroad) in cultural planning.


Cultural Services Staff research best practices annually, along with modern cultural presentation methods, that align with community inquires, and requests. COP is a member of Creative Cities, which highlights Cultural Programs/Events best practices across Canada, and globally.

Establish a cross-departmental Culture Team to build the capacity of the City to “adopt a cultural lens” and support the implementation of the Cultural Strategic Plan.


The Corporate Cultural Plan Committee is in place and is represented by Cultural Services, City Development, Economic Development, Engineering Services, Office of the CAO, Pickering Museum Village, and Library Staff.

Identify a strategy to address transportation issues that occur at venues hosting major events, and consider transportation in the selection and design of new venues.

The City is finalizing its Integrated Transportation Master Plan (ITMP). This is a key strategic planning document that will shape Pickering’s long-term transportation issues. The ITMP will provide direction for transportation policies, programs, and infrastructure. The Plan addresses various transportation issues for existing venues that host major events and creates a template for future venues. Strategies include a proposed city wide cycling network, improving the safety of streets to attract users to non-automobile modes of travel, and initiatives that aim to reduce trip demand by single-occupant vehicles.

2. Build a strong and collaborative cultural sector

Convene networking and peer-to-peer learning events for a cross-section of the cultural sector.


Ten Cultural Networking Meetups have been arranged for cultural groups to increase information sharing and to create the opportunity for community groups to work on shared events. Since 2014, two aspirational meetings have been held to identify key topics of interest, such as grant funding opportunities, grant writing tips, volunteer management, marketing and promotion

Address a need for more small venues to support cultural activities (e.g., for exhibitions and performances). 


Although the Central Library has not expanded to date, in 2017 we re-arranged the physical collections to create a new area that doubles as a study and events space. This space has been used for a weekly drop-in for youth and weekly seniors’ socials. The Central Library lobby is available for small table-top cultural displays. In pre-pandemic times, music recitals are often booked in the Central Library auditorium which has a baby grand piano.

The Reading Garden was added to the George Ashe Library to create a new area for leisure reading, studying and programming in 2017. It continues to be used for preschool storytimes during the warmer months.

In 2018, the Library opened a Makerspace at the Central Library. This new digital learning space allows Pickering residents to develop their digital skills, develop maker skills and express creativity in a safe learning environment. The sound-proof recording booth is extremely popular for podcasting and music creation. Pickering residents also enjoy: 3D printing, using the vinyl cutter and carvey machine for signage and design creations, the large scale printer for photographic printing and posters, a sewing machine, a digital conversion station and button maker which allow for self expression. We also provide a Mac design center with dedicated Macs loaded with creative software for graphic, video and sound editing.

In 2020, the Pickering Public Library was able to move their events online for all ages to continue our connection with the community during the pandemic. Highlights include: Stay at Home Storytimes, a Drag Queen storytime, virtual summer reading clubs, genealogy workshops and bibliotherapy. A staff team called The Disruptors are working to prototype new online events and to establish the strategic direction for virtual programming. This community has engaged with online events and has shown that this format is here to stay.

Library ran their third annual Makerfest but for the first time ever it ran as a fully online festival. A highly anticipated program by our community and a day filled with online maker themed programs.

The Library recently hosted our 2nd annual 5-Minute Film Festival (5MFF) also completely online. This event engaged 130 guests throughout the event, shared an amazing night of screening films made by community members and industry experts, and gave out 4 awards for outstanding entries. 5MFF is a culminating event for a series of filmmaking workshops held from April to July 2020.

Engage cultural groups in the development of strategies that stimulate and cultivate resident cultural engagement between north and south Pickering. 


Pickering Museum Village is leading a tourism initiative, partnering with cultural attractions, local businesses and tourism agencies to collectively package and promote tourism experiences in Pickering and surrounding areas. This project aims to encourage visitors to lengthen their stay by visiting more attractions and businesses in the area. The project runs from 2020 – 2022. 

Develop and implement a “module” on culture and heritage that could be easily delivered in the school system. 


Pickering Museum Village welcomes on average 10,000 school children to the museum annually, who participate in the museum’s education program. The museum delivers an immersive, hands-on education program that features Pickering’s culture and heritage. In 2020 the museum converted existing education programs to a virtual model, during COVID-19 to be delivered in schools.

Expand the Central Library to include community and cultural meeting spaces – ensure the library is seen as one of the City’s strongest cultural assets. 


Tentative plans are underway to create a new Central Library that includes meeting rooms where community and cultural groups can meet. In the interim, the Library is launching a new website in October. This new virtual branch will help reach out to the community during the pandemic and promote our online resources – ebooks, audiobooks, music, movies and magazines - and our virtual events.

3. Strengthen culture-led economic development

Shift the mindset in the community toward thinking about culture as an asset; change the thought process from culture as an expense to culture as an investment.
Update coming soon.
Establish tourism as a corporate priority (with a strong emphasis on cultural tourism). 


Food plays an important part in many cultural initiatives. Economic Development is advancing a local food security strategy, as well, there is a Region-wide local food strategy group. May be appropriate to integrate elements into this Action section.

$44,4400 secured from Rural Economic Development Fund (Ontario Government) in 2019 to develop a permanent exhibit and attract tourists to the Pickering Museum Village’s Blacksmith Shop.

$150,000 secured from the Canada Cultural Investment Fund (Department of Canadian Heritage) by Pickering Museum Village to lead a cultural tourism initiative and attract tourists to Pickering.

Pickering Museum Village became a formal partner in Central Counties Tourism “Temperance and Temptation” packaged tourism experiences in South Durham in 2020.

Examine the opportunity to leverage cultural festivals to define a strong cultural brand for Pickering and increase its reputation as a significant cultural destination. 
Update coming soon.
Ensure a strong focus in the Cultural Strategic Plan on the needs of commercial cultural activities and enterprises.


Ongoing efforts to increase Pickering’s profile within the domestic, national and international film industry, resulted in a near tripling of permitted film activity on our roads and private properties by 2019. During the restrictions imposed by pandemic related Health & Safety criteria, Pickering had policies and procedures in place allowing us to remain open to filming events.  The City continues to support construction of a new film production studio on Durham Live lands, and in the meantime, welcomed the opening of the William F. White backlot in October 2020 (now Canada's largest filming backlot), and TriBro Sandy Beach Studios in May 2022.  These developments will serve to increase the opportunity for local job creation in this creative industry, and further the profile of the City as a place to invest by the filming industry.

Examine opportunities to engage the private sector and encourage corporate sponsorships that will maximize resources/investment for cultural initiatives.


Work with corporate sponsors for various sustainability events e.g. Sustainable Seaton: Community-Building Series, plantings e.g. annual pollinator planting & butterfly tagging with Canada Bread Ltd. The former Celebrating Sustainable Neighbourhood Program was largely supported though sponsorship.

Sustain and promote Pickering’s online Cultural Directory as a means of celebrating and increasing the profile of Pickering’s cultural assets. 


The Cultural Directory format is outdated and not compatible with today’s technology. As such, staff sought out an alternative, or updated program. Staff see the Open Data Portal as a solution to the needs to replace the Cultural Directory as is, and support the need for a Corporate wide GIS strategy. As such a MEMO requesting a Transition for the Cultural Directory onto the Open Data Portal was sent in May 2020 – to Manager, Policy and Geomatics

Open Data is digital data that is made available with the technical and legal characteristics necessary for it to be freely used, reused, and redistributed by anyone, anytime and anywhere.

Visit our Open Data Portal to view, download, and learn about the City’s, and other Public Agencies, open data sets.
Create and introduce online user-friendly tools such as a Community Events Application and Community Media Guide to encourage community organizations, residents, and corporate partners to take the lead in the provision of cultural initiatives.

Cultural Services with the help of the Corporate Events Team developed the Community Festivals and Events manual to assist Event Organizers to plan public events and activities within Pickering. Festivals and Events are a significant investment of resources. The contents of the manual assist with the safe and successful operation of festivals and events within the City of Pickering. This manual clearly outlines all areas of responsibility for Community Festival and Event Organizers. The manual includes information on permits, policies, and procedures along with critical paths, checklists, tips, and contact information. This valuable information will assist you to complete the event planning process and assist you to ensure all of your necessary approvals are in place prior to an event. Public Event Organizers will submit a Community Festivals & Events Application prior to operating or promoting their Community event on City property. 

Each year the City of Pickering accepts grant applications from local non-profit community organizations. Guidelines and Community Grant Policy for eligibility criteria and other application details. Staff recommendations with respect to approval of the 2021 grant applications will be provided to Council at the Executive Budget Committee meeting in the first quarter of 2021. Council's final approval of the budget will occur at a subsequent Council meeting.

Cultural Service established the Cultural Portal on to expand, centralize, and simplify the delivery of Cultural initiatives, and recognition of Culture in Pickering. 

4. Conserve and promote history and heritage

Develop programs and facilities to house and conserve archival collections.
Although the Central Library expansion has not taken place, the Library has obtained climate controlled, off-site storage to accommodate a growing archival collection. Library and City staff are also working together to plan for the upcoming purpose-built Pickering Heritage & Community Centre which will ensure the long term preservation of our cultural heritage materials.
Strengthen the promotion of local history assets.

Pickering’s History and Culture provides a vibrant foundation upon which to build our future. Through the actions set out in the Cultural Plan we will increase appreciation for Pickering's vast number of historical and heritage assets, creating pride in pickering, and preserving our past for future generations. 

Information on the history of Frenchman’s Bay and the history of Rotary Frenchman’s Bay West Park was included in a series of interpretive signs that were installed at the new kiosk in Rotary Frenchman’s Bay West Park.

Information on the history of boating on Frenchman’s Bay was included in an interpretive sign that was installed in Frenchman’s Bay Ratepayer’s Memorial Park as part of the parks reconstruction.

Visits to the PADA website held steady over the first three-year period of the Cultural Plan up until a technical failure in March of 2017 making it inaccessible to anyone outside of the Library or City facilities. This meant a much lower number of visits to the digital archive in 2017. A new solution, in partnership with the City, was launched to the public at the end of November 2017. The new Pickering Local History Collection Digital Archive provides improved searching and availability of materials. The site provides access to 8,904 community newspaper issues, 4,006 images, and 2,468 documents dating to between 1798 and 2010. Usage statistics show an average of 21,000 unique user sessions each month and a total of 620,000 items viewed since the new site launched.

Programming and community outreach has increased each year since the adoption of the strategic plan. This includes both a higher number of programs run each year over the previous year and greater attendance overall.

The number of in-person and remote requests for information have also increased each year. Since 2015, 3,500 residents have attended local history programming and outreach events and 1,700 people have had their information requests answered.

The Pickering Community Banner Program celebrates the culture, heritage and beauty of our City, and is now an annual budgeted item. The City of Pickering invites Canadian artists of all ages, or artist teams, to create, design and submit artwork to be used for the Community Banner Program. 

Establish a Visitors’ Centre at the Pickering Museum Village.
Update coming soon.
Leverage opportunities to connect culture and heritage programming with the new Rouge Park.

Currently, the Rouge National Urban Park has proposed a new Northeast Trail system. The proposal is an 11 km wilderness/backcountry trail within the northeast quadrant of Rouge National Urban Park (RNUP) located within the rural areas of Pickering and Uxbridge.

Sustainability Team have supported Rouge National Park through participation in their events as well as, inviting them to participate in City events help to raise awareness about their efforts.

Collaborate with the Region of Durham, Heritage Pickering and Parks Canada to establish a Heritage Path linking the Rouge National Urban Park entrance to the west part of the Kingston Rd. corridor in accordance with the Council endorsed intensification plan for the corridor.

Develop strategies to highlight and celebrate Pickering’s heritage properties that include additional or improved signage to identify arts, cultural, and heritage designations and public properties.
Update coming soon.
Allocate funds to acquire and preserve heritage properties. 

$450,000 secured from Canada Cultural Strategic Fund (Department of Canadian Heritage) to retrofit the Gas & Steam Barn into the Conservation lab at Pickering Museum Village (2017 – 2019). This project established climate-controlled collections storage, an operational conservation lab and wood shop at the museum.

Establish a First Nations Interpretive Centre in partnership with relevant stakeholders.

Cultural Services established, and Council Approved: Report and Action Plan CS 30-20 Indigenous Relationship Building.

That Council adopt the proposed Indigenous Land Acknowledgement Statement as set out in Attachment 1 of that report that reads: “We acknowledge that the City of Pickering resides on land within the Treaty and traditional territory of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation and Williams Treaties signatories of the Mississauga and Chippewa Nations. Pickering is also home to many Indigenous persons and communities who represent other diverse, distinct, and autonomous Indigenous nations. This acknowledgement reminds us of our responsibilities to our relationships with the First Peoples of Canada, and to the ancestral lands on which we learn, share, work, and live.”

That Council endorse the Indigenous Relationship Building Action Plan, prepared by staff and the Cultural Advisory Committee, as set out in Attachment 2 of that report; and;

That the appropriate officials of the City of Pickering be authorized to take the necessary actions as indicated in this report.

Cultural Services established a relationship with HIP (Honouring Indigenous Peoples) and became the first municipality to join the membership of that organization.

Continue to operate the Doors Open program.

Declining attendance and increased cost to run program did not warrant continuing the Door Open program through 2019. Staff continue to monitor the community desire to participate and would welcome a Community Partnership to once again deliver the program.

5. Celebrate and support diversity and inclusion

Ensure representation from diverse communities on the proposed Cultural Roundtable.

The Cultural Advisory Committee composition allows for a diverse membership, by inviting a mixture of Community Appointed membership and Community Stakeholders. Each term membership has the opportunity to revise the composition and make recommendations to change based on the needs of the community.

The current compassion allows for 12 Committee members, 4 members from the public and 8 representatives from related community organizations. Members from the public must reside in Pickering and represent a board range of interests and experience in the cultural sector. Community Organization representatives must be from organizations who serve the City of Pickering. Where possible, appointments to the Committee shall include representatives of the following organizations/ associations:

• Pine Ridge Arts Council
• Durham West Arts Centre
• Pickering Historical Society
• Pickering Public Library
• Ajax/Pickering Board of Trade
• Diversity Groups 

In 2020, two additional sub-Committees were formed to address specific needs of the community.

The CAC, with the support of designated City staff, prepared an action plan and the terms of reference for a taskforce, which included committee composition, selection and recommended areas of focus. The CAC prepared to lead the process of community engagement, recruitment and recommendation, and have developed an action plan to support successful implementation of the ABRT. The Pickering Anti-Black Racism Taskforce will be a community driven initiative where City staff will act as a liaison providing operational and organizational support.

The Anti-Black Racism Taskforce also worked in partnership with the Pickering community, Durham-based organizations, businesses, stakeholders, and the City; to identify barriers and areas of opportunity, in order to enhance the shared experience and opportunities afforded to Black residents; to identify and coordinate opportunities for stakeholder and community engagement, to provide expert input and action on matters relating to the provision of anti-Black racism initiatives within the community; and to celebrate and promote the Black community, and promote Black culture.

As per Council Resolution #372-20, Supervisor, Cultural Services was directed to work with the Cultural Advisory Committee to develop an Indigenous Land Acknowledgement Statement. The advisory committee members approved the creation of an Indigenous Relationship Building Subcommittee, and have (with support from staff) developed content for a public call for subcommittee members. The purpose of the sub-committee is to; work towards a meaningful relationship with the Indigenous Community, which is mutually beneficial; undertake a long-term plan of action which engages the community, honours Indigenous Peoples, and builds appreciation and awareness of Indigenous culture and heritage; advise on opportunities to raise awareness of the history of the land and its caretakers; work in partnership with the Indigenous Community, City and relevant stakeholders to develop a Land Acknowledgement Statement and terms of use for the entire Pickering community; and, provide updates to the CAC at each regular meeting.

Actively engage these communities in defining cultural interests, needs, and opportunities.

Pickering Museum Village secured $4,000 from the Canada Cultural Investment Fund, Spark Initiative, in 2019, to establish a temporary Indigenous Steering Committee, comprised of 8 members, who advised the museum on Indigenous partnerships, programs and planning.

Work closely with the school system to increase understanding of, and appreciate for, the importance of local culture and heritage among youth.

A Pickering Environmental School Grant was newly implemented and is resulting in further engagement from local schools in actions that help further sustainability goals. In addition to the grant, the Sustainability Team continue to work with schools for other environmental initiatives e.g. Take Back the Salmon, plantings, pollinator garden care, litter cleanups.

Pickering Museum Village established a teacher’s focus group in 2020 to advise city staff on trends, priorities and practical program delivery of the museum’s education programs.

Pickering Museum Village established relationships with Educational Consultants in the Durham District School Board in 2019 to advise city staff on trends, priorities and practical program delivery of the museum’s education programs.

In 2020, Pickering Museum Village initiated the development an Education web page and its promotion to educators. Content on the web page included videos, on-line lesson plans, worksheets and activity pages that can be accessed for free by formal and informal educators of youth from Grade 2 level to high school age – all content has curriculum connections.

Develop cross-culture programming by connecting heritage, historic and arts businesses/organizations.

Cultural Services execute the Tom Thompson Celebration in Claremont under the direction of City Staff in partnership with (insert Community reps). This one-off event was used as a Community Mentorship project, and provided hands on training on public event production.

Cultural Services continues to operate and execute several community festivals that include programing proved and developed by heritage, historic and arts businesses/organizations Winterfest, Mayors Levee, Artfest, Canada Day continue our traditional celebrations, and continue to develop new community partnerships.

Pickering Museum Village has engaged many community partners in running cultural events on site at the museum from 2014 – 2019. Events of significance include: Museum Minecraft, Christmas in the Village, and History in Action Saturdays.

Support programming in cultural centers through Marketing and Event guidelines for community engagement.

Cultural Service established the Cultural Portal on to extend the reach and communication of Cultural programs, events and initiatives. 

6. Cultivate opportunities for the creation, education and enjoyment of the arts. 

Develop and implement a public art policy, program, and funding formula.

Cultural Services established for Council endorsement: CUL 130 Public Art Policy, November 25, 2019.

Use art to enhance public spaces, particularly within the City Centre

Current Public Art Inventory can be viewed on the Open Data Portal – Public Art layer: 

Enhancements as well as at strategic entrances and gateways are identified in the Pickering Official Plan and Council endorsed City’s Urban Design Guidelines.

Installation of six public art pieces in Esplanade Park as part of the Ontario Main Street Revitalization Initiative. Two metal sculptures having a pollinator theme were created by Ron Baird. Geordie Lishman created four individual metal figures representing the City Centre’s theme of Live, Work, Gather and Inspire. The artwork was placed amongst new raised planters and site furniture to create a new gathering space at the east end of the park.

Installation of a public art piece called “Our House” by wood sculptor Dorsey James was installed in Rotary Frenchman’s Bay West Park. The piece was donated by the Rotary Club of Pickering.

Assign a 1% contribution to public art from the capital budgets of applicable new or renovated facility and park projects.
Update coming soon.
Establish Public Art Reserve Fund. Public art is considered to include, but is not limited to, sculpture, fountains, architectural components, special lighting or landscaping and murals.

Once the Public Art Program is established, a Council endorsed policy or guidelines should be drafted to establish new development based funding strategies for public art located either in public areas or private publicly accessible areas within the City. The example of “The Percent for Public Art Program” established by the City of Toronto, could act as a precedent of means to provide funding to include and maintain public art not only in prominent areas, as identified by the Official Plan and the City’s Urban Design Guidelines, but in other areas within the City.

Ensure that the City plays a leadership role in addressing the need for a new performing arts or multi-purpose cultural facility preferably in the City Centre.

Community Services established the position of: Executive Director, Performing Arts Centre

Develop connections with local colleges and universities to foster arts education.

Cultural Services, and Library staff are members of Community Partners in Diversity hosted by - Sarah Hickman, Policy Advisor, Diversity and Immigration Program, Regional Municipality of Durham, Planning and Economic Development Department.

Members are drawn from diverse sectors of the community representing agencies, institutions, local business groups and the Region. The DLIP works with community stakeholders to create welcoming communities across Durham Region. Priorities for this work are set out in the Durham Diversity and Immigration Community Plan.