The best party of the summer concludes today, July 16, with the Tall Ships 2007 Parade of Sail in Halifax Harbour. About 600,000 people picked their way through 25 Tall Ships. Financial help for the festival was provided by the province and Halifax Regional Municipality. The provincial government has contributed $600,000 in cash and in-kind services to ensure that all Nova Scotians share the economic benefit across the province. “With a track record for economic impact of about $20 generated for every $1 dollar invested, Tall Ships events in this region continue to be a leading tourism and economic development generator,” said Premier Rodney MacDonald. The Tall Ships Nova Scotia Festival began in Halifax on Thursday, July 12. Today, July 16, the ships head south to Lunenburg, Shelburne and Yarmouth, while other ships head north to Port Hawkesbury, Louisbourg and Sydney, and to Pictou. For Halifax Regional Municipality, the event continues to build on the momentum of nearly a quarter of a century of hosting modern-day Tall Ships gatherings in the Halifax Harbour. HRM contributed $300,000 to host the Halifax Harbour event July 12-16. “Halifax Harbour is well-known as one of the deepest and most serviceable harbours in the world,” said HRM Mayor Peter Kelly. “Our waterfront is an exceptional platform to showcase this large fleet of amazing tall ships as well as the thousands of people who admire them.” The budget for the Tall Ships Nova Scotia festival is about $3.3 million, which includes attracting ships to each of the eight ports, host fees, entertainment and administration. “Tall Ships is an amazing event and we’re proud to host it, here in Nova Scotia, said Eric Thomson, chair, Waterfront Development Corporation Ltd. board of directors and chair, Tall Ships executive committee. “We’re very pleased that three levels of government have provided cash and in-kind support to attract the largest gathering of Tall Ships in North America this year, it will be a great event for our province.” Cumulative corporate sponsorship support totals $976,000 and an additional $1,011,000 will be raised through earned income on ticket sales, vending and merchandise. Tall Ships Organizers expect more than 600,000 visitors will come to Tall Ships Nova Scotia Festival 2007 at venues across the province. On-line ticket sales and inquiries have come from as far away as Germany, France, and the United States and across Canada.