August 10, 2009 15:45 ET

Celebrating Canada's Contributions to the World of Sports

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Aug. 10, 2009) - From the centuries-old game of lacrosse to basketball, Canadians have created great ways to play and compete. This ingenuity is being celebrated by the launch of four eye-catching stamps showcasing four sports invented by Canadians: basketball, five-pin bowling, lacrosse and ringette. The stamps are being issued today on the 100th anniversary of the invention of five-pin bowling by Guelph, Ontario native Thomas Ryan.

"We had to invent pastimes, especially to stay in shape during our long, harsh winters," says Robert Waite, chairman of the Stamp Advisory Committee and Canada Post's senior vice-president of Corporate Social Responsibility. "This is what inspired James Naismith, for example, to invent basketball more than 100 years ago: he wanted athletics to continue between the fall football and spring baseball seasons."

The stamps display the "tools of the trade" of four made-in-Canada sports-basketball, lacrosse, ringette and five-pin-with a background line drawing of the appropriate playing surface. Though sporting equipment has evolved over the years, Canada Post decided to feature original well-worn equipment for each sport.

The 54-cent stamps measure 24.75 mm x 32.25 mm (vertical) with simulated perforations. Lowe-Martin printed 2.5 million stamps which will be sold in a booklet of 8. The self-adhesive stamps will be printed using lithography in 4 colours on Tullis Russell paper. They are general tagged on all sides. The Official First Day Cover will bear the cancels NORTH BAY ON and GUELPH ON.

The Official First Day Cover showcases historic photos from the sports' early days and envelope seals feature the footwear required to play the games.

Additional information about Canadian stamps can be found in the News section of Canada Post's website, and photos of these new stamps are also available. Stamps and other products will be available at participating post offices, or can be ordered online by following the links at Canada Post's website, or by mail order from the National Philatelic Centre. From Canada and the USA, call toll-free: 1 800 565-4362, and from other countries, call: 902 863-6550.

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