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Ottawa hosts networking event for gay businesses

Attendees will mingle with MPs and the Mayor

Denis Schryburt, regional director for the Eastern region of Ontario Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. Credit: Pat Croteau photo

Ontario and Quebec gay business people are heading to Ottawa for a networking event this weekend, and they’ll be mingling with MPs on the Hill and Mayor Larry O’Brien at City Hall.

The event — dubbed the Summit of Two Shores — is a joint venture between the Ontario Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (OGLCC) and Chambre de commerce gaie du Québec (CCGQ).

Organizers expect to draw between 40 to 50 business people from Québec City, Montreal, Gatineau, the Greater Toronto Area, the Niagara Region and the Ottawa area. The weekend kicks off Friday, March 19 with a cocktail reception on Parliament Hill.

“The reason for the event on the Hill is so that business people in the gay and lesbian community and people who make legislation and laws and deal with budgets can get together and have discussions,” says Denis Schryburt, regional director for the eastern region of the OGLCC. “It’s about a sharing of ideas and experience from different levels and different areas of the country.”

Organizers have intentionally kept the summit light — there are no speakers, only networking opportunities — so Chamber members have the opportunity to share information and ideas beyond provincial borders.
“This is our first event with the other cities, so we want to keep it light. We want people just to come to Ottawa, and get to know the two provinces,” says Schryburt.

Schryburt says it’s a great opportunity for members to meet each other and explore the city.

“Ottawa is a great city and we have some great businesses,” says Schryburt. “It’s important to bring in more people from other cities to come and visit and partake in what [Ottawa’s small businesses] have to offer.”

The Summit of Two Shores ends with a brunch with the mayor at Ottawa City Hall on Saturday, March 20.

For more information on the Summit of Two Shores:

Ontario Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

Chambre de commerce gaie du Québec.