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What is Northern Lights?

Northern Lights is Canada’s #1 Arctic and North Business and Cultural Showcase, specifically profiling opportunities and culture in the regions of Nunavut, Nunavik, and Labrador/Nunatsiavut. The show serves many purposes, including:

  • Creation of stronger relationships between northern regions;
  • Promotion of our respective regions to southern markets and business concerns;
  • Promotion of economic development opportunities available in the Eastern Arctic
  • and north;
  • Promote joint ventures and the exchange of information between the northern
  • regions and others;
  • Allow northern organizations the opportunity to establish new relationships with
  • southern businesses;
  • Promote Expo Labrador, the Nunavut Trade Show and Conference, the Nunavik Trade Show, and other regional trade shows and conferences to the south and to the other northern regions;
  • Promote Eastern Arctic and North tourism, culture and the arts to both the south and other northern regions; and
  • Provide a high profile southern venue for the sale of arts and crafts.

Who organizes Northern Lights?

Northern Lights is a project of the Labrador North and Baffin Regional Chambers of Commerce. The partnership was formed in 2003, resulting in the establishment of the first Northern Lights in 2008. The initial event was so successful, the Chambers continue to deliver the show every two years.

Where is Northern Lights held?

The 2018 show is being held in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada at the Shaw Centre, located at 55 Colonel By Drive.

What are the dates for the Northern Lights Conference?

The upcoming event is being held January 31-February 3, 2018.

What can I participate in at Northern Lights?

For those looking for new business opportunities or partners in Canada’s Eastern Arctic and North (Nunavut, Nunavik, Labrador/Nunatsiavut), or to build upon existing relationships, Northern Lights is a ‘must-attend’ event. Northern Lights provides unprecedented access to Northern corporate, government and Aboriginal leaders and decision-makers, and the multi-industry trade show provides extensive networking opportunities.

Our extensive conference and workshop program provides detailed and timely information regarding Arctic and North opportunities. Sessions cover a number of topics, including sovereignty, natural resources, energy, transportation and infrastructure, tourism, and many others. The multi-industry trade show offers extensive networking opportunities with businesses, government departments and agencies, NGOs and other stakeholder groups.

If you are an artist or just an art enthusiast, Northern Lights has one of the largest recurring Northern visual, craft, and performing arts shows in Canada. Watch artists at work, browse their finished product and purchase arts and crafts from renowned and up-and-coming artists. You can also enjoy a musical performance, cultural demonstration, or fashion show featuring talent from across the Eastern Arctic and North region.

How many people will there be at the conference?

Typically, Northern Lights attracts approximately 200 exhibits and 1,200 total participants from Canada’s North, all provinces and territories, and nearly 20 countries. In addition, about 2,000 people from the general public visit the Arts and Cultural pavilion and Trade Show over the course of the event.

Is there anything I should know when planning my trip?

Northern Lights delegates are eligible for travel discounts from a variety of partnering companies. For a full list of participating airlines and hotels, visit the Plan Your Stay page for more information.

During your stay in Ottawa for Northern Lights 2018, take time to check out this exciting and vibrant city including activities surrounding arts and culture, entertainment and nightlife, museums, parks, shopping and outdoor events. To heighten your experience in Canada’s capital city, visit Ottawa Tourism for more information.

Ottawa Tourism offers Northern Lights participants the Flash Your Badge Program, providing discounts to various attractions, restaurants, and tours in the National Capital Region. Just show your Northern Lights badge at any of the participating suppliers to receive your discount!

What are the highlights of Northern Lights?

Trade Show

The displays on the trade show floor include private business and all three levels of government from the participating regions and southern interests. Exhibitors represent a variety of industries, from tourism to natural resources to government, and much more. The opening day of the trade show is business-to-business day, with the remaining two days open to the general public.

Conference and Keynotes

The conference will principally focus on economic development opportunities in each of the regions. Speakers from each of the participating regions and across North America will present on issues and topics of benefit to those in attendance, both southern and northern. The conferences will be preceded and followed by breakfasts and lunches with keynote presentations from a variety of high-profile speakers.


Workshops, roundtable discussions, and other presentations will also occur during the trade show at the Shaw Centre. Some of the workshops with broader topics of general interest will be promoted and open to the general public and/or delegates. Other, more focused workshops will be open to delegates only or a targeted group. Participants in the roundtable discussions will be invited by the organizers of that specific roundtable.

Arts and Cultural Pavilion

The Arts and Cultural Pavilion includes a stage for cultural presentations and an area to demonstrate and profile regional art and artists. Delegates and the general public will have access to arts and craft demonstrations, various musical and cultural performances, and can even purchase arts and crafts at the Pavilion.

Social Events

On the opening evening, the event officially kicks off with the Meet and Greet. In 2018, Northern Lights has once again partnered with the Arctic Inspiration Prize to include their annual awards ceremony as part of the Opening Ceremonies.

The final day of Northern Lights includes a formal gala held in the Trillium Ballroom on the 4th floor of the Shaw Centre, with a spectacular view of Capital Hill, Rideau Canal, and the surrounding area. This event will include the closing ceremonies, a Northern fashion show, high-profile performers from across the Eastern Arctic and North, and a charity auction with proceeds to support various causes in Nunavut, Nunavik, and Labrador/Nunatsiavut.

Throughout the event, a number of organizations will host hospitality suites and/or special events that may be open to all delegates or by invitation only.

What is the Arctic Inspiration Prize Awards Ceremony?

An immense territory of majestic beauty, the Canadian Arctic is home to a growing population of over 100,000 northern Canadians, with a majority of indigenous peoples with a millennial history and rich culture. Once considered as the last frontier, change and modernization are rapidly making the Arctic more accessible and the subject of increasing public, scientific, industrial and political interest.

Addressing the challenges and seizing the opportunities of accelerating changes in the Arctic environment, culture, technology and economy require innovative approaches, mobilizing the best knowledge from various sources into concrete solutions.

The Arctic Inspiration Prize recognizes and promotes the extraordinary contribution made by teams in the gathering of Arctic knowledge and their plans to implement this knowledge to real world applications for the benefit of the Canadian Arctic, Arctic Peoples and therefore Canada as a whole.

There are five equally important pillars that contribute to its ongoing success: annual prize money, the teams who apply for and win the Prize, the distinguished Selection Committee and our remarkable, engaged Partners and Ambassadors.

Laureates of the sixth annual Arctic Inspiration Prize (AIP) will be announced at a special Awards Ceremony on the evening of Wednesday, January 31st in conjunction with the Northern Lights Business & Cultural Showcase being held at theShaw Centre in Ottawa, Ontario.  New this year, the AIP will award up to $3 million through three new Prize categories, making the AIP ever more accessible to innovative teams across the Canadian North.

For more information regarding the Arctic Inspiration Prize and the new Prize categories, visit www.arcticinspirationprize.ca.  Tickets for the Awards Ceremony can be purchased on the Northern Lights Registration Page.


Register Today!

If you’re interested in attending Canada’s only cultural and business showcase that highlights our country’s Eastern Arctic & North, register now for Northern Lights 2018, taking place at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa, Ontario.

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Amazing four day event in Ottawa

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