Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister makes his way to a press conference at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2019. The Manitoba government is launching a new program, offering grants to organizations that offer remote programming like live-streamed performances, to help people stay at home over the winter during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister makes his way to a press conference at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2019. The Manitoba government is launching a new program, offering grants to organizations that offer remote programming like live-streamed performances, to help people stay at home over the winter during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods

Manitoba government offers money for online performances so people will stay home

WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government is hoping that free online entertainment and classes will help people through the pandemic winter and convince more folks to stay home.

The Progressive Conservative government announced a $3-million grant program Monday for performing artists, fitness instructors and others who can stream their services to the general public.

“We recognize that staying home this holiday season and not being able to see our friends and family will be very difficult,” Municipal Relations Minister Rochelle Squires said.

“Additional programming over the holidays will make that time a little easier, we hope.”

The money will be available for a wide range of items such as online cooking classes, musical performances and yoga. Recipients must make their programming available to the general public for free.

One event already in the works is a variety show that will be pre-recorded at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Company.

The announcement was another indication that Manitoba is likely to be under substantial restrictions on public gatherings and business openings for at least the near future.

The current set of health orders includes a five-person cap on public gatherings and the mandatory closure of bars, concert venues and non-essential retail stores.

It also forbids people from having house guests, with some exceptions. Dr. Brent Roussin, the province’s chief public health officer, again urged people to stay at home as much as possible in order to slow the spread of COVID-19.

“Our case numbers remain too high to sustain. There’s still too much strain on our health-care system,” Roussin said.

Health officials reported 325 new COVID-19 cases in Manitoba Monday and 12 additional deaths. The rate of people testing positive remained high, at more than 13 per cent.

Roussin cautioned snowbirds and other winter travellers to cancel any non-essential travel — not just because of the health risks.

“Restrictions are changing quickly and may be imposed on countries with little warning. Your travel plans could be severely disrupted … you may be forced to remain outside of Canada longer than expected.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Town of Ponoka and the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) have ratified a new agreement, averting a strike. (File photo from Facebook)
Alberta gov’t ‘using pandemic as shield to lay off workers,’ says AUPE

The Government of Alberta’s “attacks on workers” is continuing with a new… Continue reading

Rocky Mountain House RCMP, EMS, Search and Rescue, STARS air ambulance and Alstrom Helicopters worked together to rescue a fallen ice climber Friday. (Photo contributed by Rocky Mountain House RCMP)
Rocky Mountain House RCMP help rescue fallen ice climber

Rocky Mountain RCMP helped assist a fallen ice climber Friday afternoon. At… Continue reading

Students Association of Red Deer College president Brittany Lausen says she’s pleased the college is offering students a choice to attend class in-person or remotely. (Red Deer Advocate file photo)
Red Deer College winter term enrolment dips

Enrolment down about six per cent but mix of online and in-person instruction is going over well

Brett Salomons, of Salomons Commercial, and Mark Jones, CEO of the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre, in the CACAC's new temporary home. (Contributed photo)
Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre’s One Day Challenge returns

Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre has announced its One Day Challenge is… Continue reading

Dwayne Buckle, 40 of Red Deer finished a 1,638-kilometre walk, in honour of his family. The 12-week, 82 day-journey wrapped up in Port Hardy, B.C. on Monday. Facebook photo
Red Deer man completes 1,638 km hike for cancer research

Dwayne Buckle, a Red Deer firefighter returned home Friday after his 12-week journey

A Suncor logo is shown at the company's annual meeting in Calgary, Thursday, May 2, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Body of worker whose bulldozer fell through ice on inactive tailings pond recovered

FORT MCMURRAY, Alta. — Oilpatch giant Suncor says the body of a… Continue reading

A restaurant manager in Orlando used a sign to secretly ask an 11-year-old boy if he needs help from his family after they were spotted withholding food from him. (Photo courtesy Orlando Police Department)
WATCH: Restaurant manager uses secret note to ‘rescue’ child, says Orlando Police

The manager of an Orlando restaurant is receiving praise from police after… Continue reading

Tourists take photographs outside the British Columbia Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday August 26, 2011. A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging the provincial government to not pursue plans to ban domestic travel to fight the spread of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. travel ban will cripple struggling tourism sector, says industry coalition

VICTORIA — A coalition of British Columbia tourism industry groups is urging… Continue reading

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Provinces work on revised plans as Pfizer-BioNTech shipments to slow down

Quebec and Ontario, the two provinces hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic,… Continue reading

The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police "E" Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on Friday April 13, 2018. A young snowshoer who set out alone on a rugged mountain trail on Vancouver's north shore Thursday has died. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Snowshoer dies after overnight search on Vancouver-area mountain: RCMP

SQUAMISH, B.C. — A snowshoer who set out alone on a rugged… Continue reading

nunavut
‘It was joyous:’ Sun returns to some Nunavut communities for first time in weeks

IQALUIT — A sliver of orange rose over Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, earlier… Continue reading

People take photos through the extensive security surrounding the U.S. Capitol in Washington, Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, ahead of the inauguration of president-elect Joe Biden and vice-president-elect Kamala Harris. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Susan Walsh
Less pomp, very different circumstances as D.C. prepares to inaugurate Biden, Harris

WASHINGTON — Some pomp. Very different circumstances. Inauguration day is supposed to… Continue reading

Winnipeg Jets' Nathan Beaulieu (88) and Nikolaj Ehlers (27) defend against Jansen Harkins (12) during scrimmage at their NHL training camp practice in Winnipeg, Wednesday, January 6, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods
Winnipeg Jets cancel practice due to possible COVID-19 exposure

WINNIPEG — The Winnipeg Jets have cancelled their practice today due to… Continue reading

Most Read