Attractions & Events

Font Size: A | A

City of Hamilton - Logo

MSDO is pleased to announce that the 2017 National Conference will be held in the City of Hamilton.  Bounded by the picturesque southern shores of Lake Ontario and the lush trails of the Niagara Escarpment, the municipality has a broad mix of urban centres and sprawling farmland, offering beautiful sights at every turn.   Hamilton is a city of many communities, built on community spirit.  From Flamborough to Stoney Creek and all points in between, the municipality is industrious and culturally diverse.

Rich in history and culture and surrounded by spectacular nature, Hamilton is a city like no other. Unique for its distinctive urban feel and vibrant arts and culture, Hamilton also boasts deep roots and a proud history. 

Hamilton boasts endless experiences for the most discerning traveler. Take an exhilarating trip through nature’s most beautiful work at the Royal Botanical Gardens; commemorate one of Canada’s most pivotal moments during the Bicentennial of the War of 1812; set your sights on Canada’s living military history at the Canadian Warplane Heritage Museum and the HMCS Haida; drive through African Lion Safari’s animal game reserves and get up-close with Lions and Giraffes; wander through one of the finest collections of art in Canada at the Art Gallery of Hamilton; take a leisurely stroll through the stalls at one of Hamilton’s local farmer’s market; find your sense of play at top-ranked golf course, or catch future stars in action at a Hamilton Bulldogs OHL game.

On your travels you’ll find award-winning restaurants across Hamilton with committed chefs attracted by the high-quality seasonal produce across the region. Be sure to track down a local food truck for a curbside meal and rediscover that some foodie pleasures never fade; enjoy fish and chips on the beach, an afternoon ice cream on the waterfront, tea in a quaint café or tasting fine wine made by award winning wine-makers.

Ideally located in the heart of the country’s most popular travel destinations, the City of Hamilton lies halfway between Toronto and Niagara Falls, less than an hour from each, making it an ideal destination, an attractive overnight detour, or a convenient stopover.

We look forward to welcoming you to the City of Hamilton!

Visit for all you need to know about enjoying your time in the vibrant City of Hamilton

Kirsten Marples

2017 Conference Host


Welcome Reception

Monday, September 25, 2017
6:00 pm – 9:30 pm (evening)
Design Annex, Art Gallery of Hamilton
118 James Street North, Hamilton

Logo for the Design Annex - Art Gallery of Hamilton

The MSDO Welcome Reception will be held at the Design Annex at the Art Gallery of Hamilton, located in the heart of the James Street North Arts District.

Situated in a restored 19th century heritage building, the Design Annex features beautiful exposed brickwork and hardwood floors. Modern, urban finishes create an atmosphere of casual elegance, while the gallery showcases contemporary art installations by local and regional emerging artists. 

To create unforgettable culinary experiences, the Design Annex is proud to partner with Hamilton-based restaurant Chefs and the event will feature a wide variety of refreshments and hors d’oeuvres showcasing local flavours.

Proceeds from the Design Annex Event Services portfolio benefits the wide range of programming presented at the Art Gallery of Hamilton for people of all ages - to spark their imaginations, challenge their minds and explore their creativity.

Photo of the Design Annex - Art Gallery of Hamilton

Alfie Smith and Nicole Christian

The Welcome Reception will feature a special performance by Alfie Smith and Nicole Christian.

Alfie Smith and Nicole Christian are old-style slide guitarists, multi-instrumentalists and a blues duo not to be missed.   

Alfie is a prolific songwriter, an accomplished performer and talented multi-instrumentatlist.  Known best for his resophonic guitars, brazen slide licks and uncompromising vocals, Alfie is endorsed by several luthiers including Goodman Guitars (who have recently named a guitar model after him) and Goldtone Banjos.  He has been nominated for a dozen Hamilton music awards including Best Male Vocalist and Best Guitarist, and has represented Toronto in the Memphis International Blues Challenge.

Nicole Christian is a little roots, a little country and a whole lot bottle-neck blues.  A multi-instrumentalist who specializes in flute, piano and resophonic guitar.  Nicole was selected as a finalist for the Toronto Blues Society’s Talent Search and was nominated for two Hamilton Music Awards, Best Female Vocalist and Best Blues Album.  She has appeared Toronto Talent and has won a Hamilton Arts Award for performance.  Nicole performs regularly throughout Southern Ontario primarily as a duo with Alfie Smith.

Featuring Alfie's belting baritone vocals mixed with Nicole's sass and jazz flute, they bring you blues, roots and songwriting in a way you have never heard before.

“Come on into their kitchen, and you won't be disappointed."

Nicole Christian - Signer

Alfie Smith - Singer

Networking Dinner

Tuesday, September 26, 2017
5:30 pm – 10:00 pm (evening)
Edgewater Manor
518 Fruitland Road, Stoney Creek

Edgewater Manor Restaurant Logo

The MSDO Conference Networking Dinner will be held at Edgewater Manor, an award winning fine dining restaurant, known for its prime location, with tunning grounds overlooking Lake Ontario, and locally sourced fresh meats and seafood.

image of Edgewater dinning Surf and Turf plate 

Steeped in history and radiating elegance, Edgewater Manor offers the perfect marriage of modern day facilities set within a Manor House, reminiscent of the Great Gatsby era. Constructed in 1921, it features historical materials and memorabilia from all over the world.

The evening will start with a cocktail reception followed by a spectacular dinner as Edgewater Manor’s award winning menu focuses on freshness and authenticity.

Live entertainment will be provided by award-winning Steve Strongman.

Steve Strongman

JUNO award-winning Canadian bluesman Steve Strongman is a versatile talent, and a restless one. By constantly pushing himself in new directions, he has kept himself vital.  

His talent is huge and impossible to miss, and it’s matched by his staggering musical ambition — as guitar-slinger, songwriter or vocalist. The same structures and progressions that animate blues and roots music can also choke the air out of it, smothering it in caricature and cliché. But Strongman is a subtle shape-shifter who manages to slip that trap without betraying the music he loves. Throughout, he never sounds an inauthentic note or loses touch with the essence of the blues.

In the tradition of The Howlin’ Wolf Album and Muddy Waters’ After the Rain, Strongman’s new album No Time Like Now offers tribute to blues-rock as a full-blooded, living thing, not a museum piece.   With No Time Like Now, one of this country’s most talented and compelling blues players becomes a juggernaut. Backed by an impressive pack of players (including drummers Dave King and Adam Warner, bassists Rob Szabo and Alec Fraser, keyboardist Jesse O’Brien), the band is pure fire — both athletically limber and wickedly tight. The session also features a stellar guitar cameo from Randy Bachman on Strongman’s muscular cover of Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet”.  No Time Like Now buzzes with fresh energy — loose, playful and reinvigorated — but it’s thanks to the caliber and chemistry of the players that it lands its punches so consistently.

Strongman’s impressive resume includes stints opening for guitar legends such as Johnny Winter, B.B. King and Buddy Guy.

The performer’s breakthrough 2012 release A Natural Fact was hailed as a standout, earning Maple Blues Awards for Recording, Songwriter, and Guitarist of the Year as well as a 2013 Juno Award for Blues Recording of the Year.   In 2014 he was thrice-nominated at the Maple Blues Awards (Guitar Player, Electric Act, and Entertainer of the Year) and in 2015 received a second Juno nod for Blues Album of the Year for Let Me Prove It To You.

Steve Strongman - Singer


Conference Shuttle Service

Complimentary shuttle service will be available to transport conference attendees between the Homewood Suites by Hilton to the Conference Networking Dinner.

Shuttle service schedules will be located in the hotel lobby and at the MSDO Conference Information Desk located on the second floor of the Homewood Suites by Hilton.

For more information please contact Shelley Darlington, 2017 MSDO Conference Liaison.

Tel.  519-426-5870 ext 1320 or Cell 519-420-7207

Tags: Things to do in Hamilton, MSDO Conference

Our Sponsors

Champion Sponsor

Microsoft: Proud Sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Salesforce: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Verint: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Oracle: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference

Supporter Sponsor

Municipal Service Delivery Officials atFocus: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Hamilton, Ontario: Proud Host of the 2017 National Conference Adoxio: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Deloitte Digital: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Customer Service Professionals Network: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference Impact Mobile Inc.: Proud sponsor of the 2017 National Conference