The City of Chicago announced today that Bixi (Public Bike System Company) of Montreal in conjunction with Alta Bicycle Share of Portland, Oregon have been chosen to build and operate Chicago’s first large-scale bike-sharing program giving Chicagoans an affordable, healthy option to existing transportation choices. Chicagoans will warmly receive this bike-sharing program as it imitates the popular car-sharing programs that they are already using such as iGo and Zip Car. This program will simply use bicycles instead of cars.
Quebec cheese companies received top honors at the 2012 World Championship Cheese Contest held in Madison, Wisconsin on March 5-8, 2012.
Winning 13 awards in 11 different classes of cheeses, Québec cheesemakers earned 6 Best of Class Awards and Alexis de Portneuf’s Bleubry-Smooth Blue cheese was chosen among the 16 Gold Medal Finalists for World Champion.
February 27-29, a Québec delegation led by Eric Marquis, Head of Mission at the Québec Government Office in Chicago, participated in the semi-annual meeting of the Great Lakes Commission in Washington, D.C.
The Alliance Française de Chicago, along with a number of French-speaking consulates and other partners, organize a dozen francophonie-related programs during the month of March. The signature event of the festival is the Kick-Off Evening, which features delicacies from Belgium, Canada, France, Haiti, Québec, Romania, and Switzerland.
About a dozen organizations will take part in a pilot project aimed at creating a recognized carbon footprint certification system in Québec. Launched by the Ministère du Développement économique, de l’Innovation et de l'Exportation (MDEIE), the initiative will receive $24 million in funding from the Québec government. The term “carbon footprint” refers to the total greenhouse gas emissions produced during the full life cycle of a product, from design to disposal.
Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec (CALQ) has just awarded the first prize for the best Canadian and US tour, which comes with $10,000 in prize money, to circus company Les 7 doigts de la main for the United States tour of Traces.
British firm Quacquarelli Symonds Limited (QS), which specializes in higher education information, announced its Best Student Cities in the World 2012 ranking in February. Montréal was ranked 10th in the world, 2nd in North America and 1st in Canada, outranking cities like Barcelona, Tokyo, New York and Amsterdam.
On February 20, Minister of Culture, Communications and the Status of Women, Christine St-Pierre, attended on her own behalf and that of Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, the unveiling of the program for the second edition of Planet Quebec at South by Southwest (SXSW) 2012, which will be held in Austin, Texas, from March 9 to 18. Minister St-Pierre will attend the event to show her support for Québec participants.
Clément Gignac, the Minister of Natural Resources and Wildlife and Minister responsible for the Plan Nord, has just announced the creation of a new joint venture between TM4, a subsidiary of Hydro-Québec, and Prestolite Electric Beijing Limited (PEBL). This joint venture will market electric drivetrain systems for buses, trucks and other heavy vehicles in Asia.
Québec Premier Jean Charest and Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks Pierre Arcand today unveiled the guidelines that are to frame the government’s commitment to dedicate 50% of the area of the Plan Nord territory to environmental protection, safeguarding biodiversity, strengthening the natural heritage and non-industrial development by 2035.
On January 31 in Montréal, Monique Gagnon-Tremblay, Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie, met with 56 diplomats stationed in Québec, including representatives of Belgium, France, Honduras, Portugal, Tunisia, Lebanon, Greece, Russia, Wallonia-Brussels, the United Kingdom, the United States, Yemen and Lithuania.
The “festival de la francophonie” is a month-long celebration of French-speaking cultures! The Alliance Française de Chicago, along with a number of French-speaking consulates and other partners, organize a dozen francophonie-related programs during the month of March. Most programs are free and very popular, so reserve your spot early.
Québec Premier Jean Charest is taking part in the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF, in Switzerland, from January 25 to 28. He is accompanied by Sam Hamad, Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade and Minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale region. The mission is an opportunity to meet with political and economic decision-makers, highlight the advantages of investing in Québec and share Québec’s experience in manpower mobility and sustainable development.
Bursaries for teaching French to non-French speakers are granted to instructors, authors and students through the Association internationale des études québécoises (AIEQ) and a donation from Anne-Marie Boucher. Projects submitted by applicants must be aimed at increasing awareness of Québec, its culture and its literature through the teaching of French. Applications must be filed with AIEQ by February 21, 2012.
Starbuck, a film by Québec filmmaker Ken Scott, captured top honours by winning the Audience Award during the closing ceremony of the 23th Palm Springs International Film Festival on Sunday 15 in California.
On January 4, the Governor of New York, Andrew M. Cuomo, expressed his desire to build an “energy highway” linking Québec’s power generation installations with consumer markets in Downstate New York, including New York City. The Governor delivered this message in the traditional State of the State address in Albany, the state capital, before assembled legislators and members of the public.
Congratulations to Québec brewers and micro-brewers!! Breweries and micro-breweries from Québec won 10 awards at the prestigious World Beer Awards 2011. Unibroue, a brewery from Chambly, Québec, took seven prizes home amongst which world’s best standard pale ale with the Blonde De Chambly, world’s best fruit wheat beer with the Ephemere Cassis (Black Currant), world’s best spiced wheat beer with the Blanche De Chambly, best amber pale ale with the Maudite, best blonde / golden pale ale with La Fin Du Monde, best flavoured dark ale with the Quelque Chose, and best strong wheat beer with the Don De Dieu.
Tourisme Québec hosted a media marketplace and luncheon on December 1, 2011, at the Paris Club Restaurant in Chicago. Local Destination Québec representatives Annemarie Heidbuechel, Director for the U.S. Midwest and Mountain States, and Debra Ruzbasan, Manager for Leisure Travel, along with their partners from Tourisme Montréal, Québec City Tourism and Le Québec Maritime welcomed over forty guests for a showcase of Québec’s leading tourist attractions. Tourism materials were distributed and each representative presented some not-to-miss happenings in their region for the upcoming year. Highlights included the Red Bull Crashed Ice World Championship in Quebec City, the inaugural ice hotel in Montréal’s Snow Village and dogsledding and baby seal watching in Québec’s maritime region.
The Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec (CALQ) has just announced that, beginning in 2012, it will award the Prix pour la meilleure tournée au Canada et aux États-Unis to an organization that stood out by the exceptional quality of a tour across Canada or the United States or both. This new biennial prize, which comes with a $10,000 cheque, will be presented at the Bourse RIDEAU event in February 2012.