TORONTO – The National Basketball Association (NBA), Dairy Farmers of Ontario (DFO) and the City of Toronto today unveiled the newly restored Don Mount Court (DMC) in Toronto’s downtown community of Rivertowne, marking the first official Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA)-themed court in Canada. The court design – which features the iconic logos of the WNBA and DFO’s youth lifestyle brand MilkUP – was created by local Toronto illustrator Fiorella Granda to celebrate women’s basketball in Canada and around the world.
“DFO is committed to supporting local communities across Ontario through MilkUP, our youth lifestyle brand, and together with the NBA we have proudly created the first WNBA-themed outdoor court in the country,” said Cheryl Smith, Chief Executive Officer at DFO. “We hope the Riverdale neighbourhood and all communities are able to enjoy the court that visually celebrates women’s basketball and provides an inclusive space for young girls who want to learn and play the game.”
“The amazing upgrade to this popular basketball court provides an exciting new space for Rivertowne community youth and others to enjoy playing the game while encouraging young girls and women to join the game and to be proud of their ongoing contributions to the sport,” City of Toronto Councillor Paula Fletcher (Toronto-Danforth).
To celebrate the collaboration and court unveiling, the non-profit organization Buckets & Borders hosted an immersive event for fans that featured a basketball clinic for youth in the community, fun activations, live music from a local DJ, and a basketball competition featuring Hoop Queens, a network for Canadian female basketball players. The event builds on MilkUP’s efforts to bring unique community-driven experiences to local neighbourhoods across Ontario to empower youth on and off the court, while highlighting dairy’s nutritional benefits.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better reception to the first WNBA game in Canada from local fans, partners and the larger basketball community and we’re thrilled to team up with the Dairy Farmers of Ontario on this legacy project in celebration of women’s basketball in the country,” said Leah MacNab, Sr. VP, NBA Canada. “This court symbolizes the passion and enthusiasm for basketball across Canada and we can’t wait to see Rivertowne’s community members utilize this court for years to come.”
The first WNBA Canada Game presented by Tangerine featuring the Chicago Sky and Minnesota Lynx was held on May 13, 2023, at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto in front of nearly 20,000 fans. The first WNBA game ever held in Canada set league records for attendance, viewership and merchandise sales. Nineteen marketing partners from across Canada, including DFO, supported the game through fan activations, digital marketing, out of home assets, TV commercials, ticket giveaways, merchandise and community clinics.
MilkUP is Dairy Farmers of Ontario’s bold and dynamic Gen Z lifestyle brand. Whether through academics, sports or entertainment, MilkUP is there encouraging Gen Zs to ‘milk every moment’. Our brand motivates Ontario youth using authentic experiences that inspires them to realize their untapped potential and re-embrace milk as a lifestyle staple. Learn more about MilkUP initiatives at milk.org/MilkUP.
About Dairy Farmers of Ontario
Dairy Farmers of Ontario (DFO) is the marketing board for the largest sector of Ontario agriculture. Our mission is to provide leadership and excellence in the production and marketing of Canadian milk for a dynamic, profitable growing dairy industry. Ontario’s 3,273 dairy farmers, their families and employees are proud to produce high-quality milk for Canadians. For more information, visit www.milk.org.
About the WNBA
The WNBA, which tipped off its 27th season on May 19, is a bold, progressive basketball league that stands for the power of women. Featuring 12 teams, the W is a unique sports property that combines competition and entertainment with a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and social responsibility. Through its world-class athletes, the in-game fan experience, TV and digital broadcasts, digital and social content and community outreach programs, the league celebrates and elevates the game of basketball and the culture around it.
In 2020, the WNBA and the Women’s National Basketball Players Association (WNBPA) signed a groundbreaking eight-year CBA that charts a new course for women’s basketball – and women’s sports overall – with a focus on increased player compensation, improvements to the player experience, expanded career development opportunities and resources specifically tailored to the female professional athlete. Key elements of the agreement are supported through the league’s partnership platform, WNBA Changemakers, with AT&T, the WNBA’s Marquee Partner and inaugural Changemaker, as well as fellow inaugural Changemakers Deloitte and NIKE, Inc, and subsequent additions Google, U.S. Bank and CarMax. During the 2020 season, the WNBA and WNBPA launched the WNBA Justice Movement forming the Social Justice Council with the mission of being a driving force of necessary change and continuing conversations about race and voting rights, among other important societal issues.
About the City of Toronto
Toronto is home to more than three million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture, innovation and climate action, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit www.toronto.ca or follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/CityofToronto, on Instagram at www.instagram.com/cityofto or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cityofto.