It’s a show that is expected to bring hundreds of hunters from across the globe to the GTA this weekend.
However, finding a venue has proven difficult for African Events Canada, who have now found a new location, the third, following cancellations at two previous locations.
The event, which will offer attendees opportunities to book trips to Africa to hunt animals such as lions, leopards, elephants and hippopotamuses had originally been scheduled to take place in a Holiday Inn near Toronto Pearson International.
However, protests from Animal Justice resulted in the hotel cancelling the booking.
A second host was then found, but that venue, The Borgata Wedding and Event Venue in Vaughan also cancelled the booking citing “threats” from animal rights activists.
Birgit Johnstone, who owns African Events Canada, says the news came on Friday as nearly 30 exhibitors were setting up their booths after flying in from Africa.
It was revealed late on Friday evening that a third venue, also in Vaughan had been found, however organisers are remaining tight lipped on the exact location.
Defending the two day event, Johnstone said animal rights activists don’t understand that trophy hunting has economical and ecological benefits for the local population in Africa.
She says that “trophy hunting brings in more money than plain meat hunting because you have the trophy hunter who pays for his trophy, pays for accommodation, pays for his flights, pays staff tips, pays for other excursions in the country and taxidermy work and that’s just him.”
According to Johnstone, the locals would turn to poaching to earn a living were it not for trophy hunting.
These claims have been referred to as ”outrageous” by Animal Justice spokeswoman Anna Pippus.
The group has applauded Borgata Wedding and Event Venue for taking a stance against the industry.