Northern Lights shone bright

Event attracts about 1,200 people

Evan Careen
Published on February 22, 2016

Sterling Peyton, chairman of the Northern Lights showcase, speaking at the event in 2014. Peyton said this year’s event was extremely successful.

©Photo submitted

The biannual Northern Lights showcase ended on Jan. 30 and chairman Sterling Peyton said it was a huge success.

“I think everything this time was a highlight,” he said.
“It was the busiest event that we’ve ever undertaken regarding Northern Lights. We held our attendance numbers from two years ago, around 1,200. The sessions were all well attended and we had a few special guests as well.”
One of those special guests to the event in Ottawa was Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the first sitting prime minister to attend the event. Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Dwight Ball was also in attendance, as well as Nunavut Premier Peter Taptuna.
Peyton said it’s a good sign for the current government’s interest in the north.
“I think there was always an interest but it’s been renewed and I think people are just genuinely interested in connecting with the north and the eastern arctic now,” Peyton said.
“When we’re talking about diversifying our economy away from the things we’re used to, the commodities such as oil and gas, things are changing in those sectors and people are looking to other opportunities, such as those that exist in the north.”
Those opportunities were some of the industries showcased at Northern Lights.
There were 150 exhibitors in the trade show, 18 conference sessions and 19 workshops. Some of the areas covered included northern fisheries, northern transportation, the environment, and arctic sovereignty. Peyton said all were well attended and people seemed really interested in the topics.
“When we put this together we put together a conference committee and go through what is topical in the recent year and put the agenda together based on what people are interested in,” he said.
“Not to coin a phrase but I think we hit the ball out of the park this time, there was a lot of interest. The early feedback we’ve been getting is really good as far as comments are concerned. We’re really pleased.”
Peyton said the attendees were from areas far and wide as well, with the majority of provinces and territories being represented.
The showcase, a collaborative effort of the Baffin Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Labrador North Chamber of Commerce, is held every two years and Peyton said they’re already looking forward to the next one.
For more information on
the event and for a recap of the
different exhibitors visit