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Exploring the Rideau Heritage Route: From Ottawa to the Rideau Canal and the Thousand Islands

Program Number: 20647RJ
Start and End Dates:
6/22/2015 - 6/29/2015; 9/14/2015 - 9/21/2015;
Duration: 7 nights
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Price starting at: $1,825.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: History & Culture
Meals: 18; 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Gluten Free; Low Fat; Low Salt    

Discover Ontario’s historic waterways from Canada’s capital, Ottawa, and on to the Rideau Canal, Lake Ontario and the Thousand Islands. Alongside experts on walks and study cruises, discover the fascinating history of locks still opened and closed by hand and examine up close this engineering masterpiece, and discover the Golden Era “cottages” of the Thousand Islands. In Kingston, Canada’s first capital, explore and learn about Fort Henry, as well as Bellevue House, home of Canada’s first prime minister.




Highlights

• Discover the Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and learn how it created safe passage to Ottawa.
• Meet with an expert at the Museum of Civilization and explore 1000 years of Canadian history, including townscapes and environments from across the country.
• Enjoy an enchanting and scenic cruise to Boldt Castle in the beautiful Thousand Islands.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to two miles; some uneven terrain, stairs, boarding and disembarking boats.




Date Specific Information

6-22-2015, 9-14-2015

Enjoy the latest in hearing technology — listening devices — on this date.



Itinerary Summary

Independent arrival Ottawa, 4 nights; coach to Kingston, 3 nights; departure from Kingston.




Ottawa

From a high bluff overlooking the Ottawa River, the Parliamentary buildings of Canada’s capital are just one of this cosmopolitan city’s many aesthetic and historic delights. With Ottawa’s rich blend of French and Canadian heritage, as well as its multiple arts offerings, it is easy to see why this city has been called Canada's Cultural Capital.



Accommodations
Ottawa: four-star hotel. Kingston:waterfront hotel

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Robert Burchill

Robert is a retired lawyer and Canadian diplomat. He retired in 1997 after 35 years of service, spending half of his career in Ottawa and half in foreign assignments including Brazil, South Africa, Jamaica, and Chicago. Robert served as Canadian Consul General in Sydney, Australia, and as Minister of Commercial and Economic Affairs in London, England.
 
David Jeanes

David Jeanes is a retired professional engineer. He is vice-president of Heritage Ottawa, which is committed to the preservation of heritage architecture. He is also president of Transport 2000 Canada, which is devoted to sustainable public transportation. A native of Britain, David has lived in Ottawa much of his working life and spent 32 years in the high-tech industry on the design, standardization and marketing of global data-communication networks.
 
Mike Teal

A native of eastern Ontario, Mike Teal is a consultant archaeologist for a private company in Ottawa. Prior to this role, he was an archaeologist for Parks Canada for more than a decade, and specialized in protecting and managing pre-contact natives’ sites in Ontario’s five national parks and along the Trent-Severn Waterway. Mike has a bachelor’s degree from Wilfred Laurier University in Ontario and a master’s degree in archaeology from Memorial University in Newfoundland.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Novotel Hotel
  Ottawa, Ontario 4 nights
   Confederation Place Hotel
  Kingston, Ontario 3 nights
 Novotel Hotel
Type: Four-Star Hotel
  Description: The Novotel Hotel is located in the heart of the nation’s capital – close to Parliament, the National Arts Centre, and the National Gallery and minutes away from restaurants and the Byward Market.
  Contact info: 33 Nicholas Street
Ottawa, ON K1N 9M7 Canada
phone: 613-230-3033
web: www.novotelottawa.ca
  Room amenities: The hotel offers a number of amenities, including in-room coffee and tea, hair dryers, iron, and ironing board, high speed internet access. Windows that open!
  Facility amenities: The hotel offers a fitness center and an indoor pool. A laundromat is located two to three blocks away from the hotel.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: Call for availability & rates Please contact the hotel directly on your own Toll Free: 1-855-677-3033
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 Confederation Place Hotel
Type: Three-Star Hotel
  Description: Savor the atmosphere of a vibrant, modern city, shaped by three centuries of tradition. Rich in history, culture and entertainment, Kingston sits at the southern end of the Rideau Heritage Route, a UNESCO Heritage Site. Our spectacular waterfront setting is located in the heart of Kingston's historic downtown and within walking distance of stores, restaurants, art galleries and museums.
  Contact info: 237 Ontario Street
Kingston, ON K7L 2Z5 Canada
phone: 613-549-6300
web: www.confederationplace.com/
  Room amenities: Flat-screen LCD television, coffee maker, hair dryer, iron and ironing board, high-speed wireless internet, clock radio/alarms.
  Facility amenities: Outdoor pool, indoor hot tub, exercise facility, computer workstation with internet access in the lobby; on-site restaurant.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights after: Contact hotel directly. Contact hotel directly. Toll Free: 888-825-4656 ext. 222
  Check out time: 11:00 AM


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Arrivals and transfers to the program hotel in Ottawa, ON. Check-in after 3:00 p.m. Dinner is at 6:00 pm in the hotel. You will be staying at Novotel Hotel that night.
  End of Program:
Departures from Kingston, Ontario after breakfast. Transfer option from Kingston to Ottawa ($$) on the final day. You will be staying at Confederation Place Hotel the night before.
  Required documents:
The Participant Information Form is required. A VALID PASSPORT IS REQUIRED FOR ALL PARTICIPANTS - We will cross the US/Canada border on our 1000 Islands Cruise; all passengers will require a passport or other approved document. Passport requirements are subject to change. Visit www.travel.state.gov/travel/cbpmc/cbpmc_2223.html for up to date information.
  Parking availability:
For information and current rates please contact the program hotel in Ottawa directly 613-230-3033. Airport long-term parking: Approximately CAD$12 per day and $60 per week. For more information, visit www.ottawa-airport.ca/AirportServices/parking-e.php
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Ottawa, Ontario
  Nearest city or town:  Ottawa, Ontario
  Nearest highway: Highway 417 - Nicholas Street Exit
  Nearest airport:  (Ottawa) Macdonald-Cartier International Airport - airport shuttle to hotel is available for approximately CAD$14 one way.
  From End of Program
  Location:  Kingston, Ontario
  Nearest city or town:  Kingston
  Nearest highway: Trans Canada Hwy - 401
  Nearest airport:  Kingston Airport (Norman Rogers)
Travel Details
 

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

   

If you purchased airfare through Road Scholar, you’ll receive free round-trip airport transfers to get you to and from your program.  Please note that the departure transfer is only available if you travel on the scheduled end date.  You will receive detailed information regarding the transfer approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. If you did not purchase airfare through Road Scholar, you will be responsible for making your own way to and from the airport.  Please review the suggested options below.

 

Ottawa

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approximately $30 - $35 CAD
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

25 - 30 minutes 

   

Taxi from the airport is approximately $35 CDN. Please note, there is no shuttle service to the hotels.

 

Ottawa

 

From Train Station

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$10 - $15 CAD
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

15 - 20 minutes 

   

Taxis are available from the train station to the hotel. Via Rail offers service to Ottawa from many major cities in Canada and connections can be made with Amtrak. www.viarai.ca

 

Ottawa

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Public Transportation
OC Transpo
phone: 613-741-4390

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$3.25
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

30 - 40 minutes 

   

Bus service is available from the Ottawa airport to the hotel with OC Transpo. Route 97 departs from pillar 14 outside the level 1 Arrivals area – bus stop - Rideau 3A (Rideau Street) walk east to Nicholas St then turn right(south) hotel will be on your left (3 minute walk). Cost is $ 3.25 per person Please visit www.octranspo1.com for more information

 

Ottawa

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Routes Adventures
phone: 866-745-1690
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$50 pp/one way
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2 - 2.5 hours 

   

A group transfer from the hotel in Kingston, Ontario to Ottawa International Airport (YOW) will be available on the final day (for a fee). This transfer will depart Kingston at 8:00 a.m.; approximate arrival at Ottawa airport is 10:30 a.m. Information and a sign-up form will be included in your Information Package.

 

Kingston

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$25 - 30 (per taxi)
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

20 - 30 minutes 

   

Taxis available to take you to the airport in Kingston, ON.

 

Kingston

 

To Train Station

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$12 - 15 (per taxi)
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

15 - 20 minutes 

   

Taxis available to take you from your hotel to the Kingston airport.

 
Driving Directions
  Montreal (East) From Montreal take AutoRoute 40 West until you reach Highway 417 West (signs to Ottawa/Hull). Follow signs to Ottawa (about 2 hours). Take Nicholas St. exit. Stay in left-hand lane until you reach Daly St., which is the third traffic light. Turn left on Daly, then immediately right into the hotel parking lot. Or go to the next traffic light, Nicholas St., and turn right, then right again into the hotel’s front-door driveway.
  Ottawa Airport (Macdonald-Cartier Int'l Airport) From the airport, follow the Airport Parkway; it turns into Bronson Ave. Follow to Highway 417 East. Take Nicholas St. exit. Stay in left-hand lane until you reach Daly St., which is the third traffic light. Turn left on Daly, then immediately right into the hotel parking lot. Or go to the next traffic light, Nicholas St., and turn right, then right again into the hotel’s front-door driveway.
  Toronto From Toronto take Highway 401 East to Highway 416 North (about 4.5 hours). Follow to Highway 417 East. Take Nicholas St. exit. Stay in left-hand lane until you reach Daly St., which is the third traffic light. Turn left on Daly, then immediately right into the hotel parking lot. Or go to the next traffic light, Nicholas St., and turn right, then right again into the hotel’s front-door driveway.
  Upstate New York From Upstate New York – Take Interstate 90 to Interstate 81 and go north to the border of Canada. Go west on Thousand Islands Bridge to Highway 401 East to Highway 416 North. Follow to Highway 417 East. Take Nicholas St. exit. Stay in left-hand lane until you reach Daly St., which is the third traffic light. Turn left on Daly, then immediately right into the hotel parking lot. Or go to the next traffic light, Nicholas St., and turn right, then right again into the hotel’s front-door driveway.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival and Check-In/Welcome Dinner/Orientation
(Monday, June 22)
   
 Arrive To: Arrivals and transfers to the program hotel in Ottawa. Check-in is 3:00 pm. Meet your Group Leader between 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. at the hotel to register and get your welcome packet; or pick up your package at the front desk if you arrive after 5:00 p.m.
 Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel at 6:00 p.m.
 Evening: Following dinner, you will meet for introductions, a review of the program and site orientation. Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Hotel
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Ottawa and the Rideau Canal/Canada's Evolution from Colony to Nation/Centre Block/Museum of History
(Tuesday, June 23)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: A presentation will examine Canada’s historical beginnings and the evolution from dependency to independence. With the passing of the British North America Act Canada became a Dominion in the British Commonwealth but his did not mean that it was a fully independent country. It remained a colony of Britain for many more years. Learn about the growing independence from Britain and early struggles between the provinces and the federal government as Canada developed into a nation. Also examine the history of Ottawa and the importance of the Rideau Canal to Ottawa and Canada.
 Lunch: Lunch at the Museum of History Cafe.
 Afternoon: Visit the Museum of History (formerly Museum of Civilization), the nation's leading museum of human history and one of the largest museums in the world. Located on the shores of the Ottawa River directly across from Parliament Hill, the Canadian Museum of History is a stunning landmark building that celebrates the achievements and histories of Canadian and world cultures. Meet with a museum curator and explore 1000 years of Canadian history, including townscapes and environments from across the country, as well as Canadian Personalities Hall bringing participants face-to-face with fascinating people whose decisions, actions and accomplishments have shaped Canada.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: History of Ottawa/Ottawa Landmarks by Coach/Canada's Parliament
(Wednesday, June 24)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: A local historian will introduce you to the history of Ottawa and its most significant sites of interest in a guided walk.
 Morning: Explore Ottawa in a unique way aboard the only amphibious bus in the city. Drive by land and water through the National Capital area of Ottawa and Gatineau. A unique historical adventure awaits you. Expert guides take you through the important sites of this picturesque area with fully narrated humorous anecdotes - an entertaining and educational journey.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Step onto the center stage of Canadian democracy on a visit to Canada's Parliament Buildings and Centre Block. From the top of the Peace Tower, gain an incredible view of Ottawa, the Rideau Canal, the Ottawa River and the Gatineau Hills beyond.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Bytown Museum/Free Afternoon
(Thursday, June 25)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Travel through time and explore the stories that shaped Bytown and early Ottawa at the Bytown Museum. From the arrival of Lieutenant-Colonel John By and the construction of the Rideau Canal to the naming of Ottawa as the nation’s capital, the permanent exhibits will introduce you to the people and the objects that helped build this great city.
 Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.
 Afternoon: Free afternoon to explore Ottawa on your own. Information will be available for free time exploration. Ottawa is home to many museums including Canadian Museum of Nature, Canadian War Museum, Currency Museum, Bytown Museum, Canadian Aviation and Space Museum, Canadian Museum of Science and Technology and the Royal Canadian Mint. Other options include historic buildings, gardens and parks, the Byward Market, boat tours and more.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own.
   
Accommodations: Novotel Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: Gatineau Hills/Jones Falls/Rideau Canal Lockstation/Building of the Rideau Canal
(Friday, June 26)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Leaving the city behind we travel through the magnificent Gatineau Hills, renowned for its breathtaking landscapes. Enjoy stunning views of the Ottawa Valley and stop at a scenic lookout along the way.
 Lunch: Lunch in Jones Falls.
 Afternoon: A presentation will acquaint participants with the building of the Rideau Canal and the history of this important waterway. The canal celebrated its 175th anniversary and was designated as a UNESCO Heritage Site in 2007. Following the War of 1812 surveys were carried out to identify a second, safe, route from Montréal to the Great Lakes. Learn about Lieutenant-Colonel John By of the Royal Engineers who was tasked to oversee the making of the route into a navigable waterway, known as the Rideau Canal.
 Afternoon: We will walk to the Jones Falls Lockstation with a local expert who will show you how the locks still work as they did when they were first built. See the Lockmaster's house and blacksmith shop.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Confederation Place Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Fort Henry/Canada's First Capital/Kingston's Historic Sites
(Saturday, June 27)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: Visit Fort Henry National Historic Site, part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with a senior officer guide. Fort Henry is both a museum and a spectacular historic site. Once inside the fortification's wooden gates visitors enter a marvelous reproduction of 19th century military life. The original Fort Henry was built during the War of 1812 (1812-1814), between Great Britain (Canada being at that time a British colony) and the United States of America. Between 1832 and 1837, a second fort was built on the site of the first, and it is this fort that stands here today. Fort Henry is the largest fortification west of Quebec city.
 Morning: A presentation will examine the history of Canada’s first capital, Kingston, Ontario; located at the eastern end of Lake Ontario where the lake meets the St. Lawrence River and the Thousand Islands. The city is home to many historic sites including the final resting place of Sir John A. MacDonald, Canada's first Prime Minister and many historic buildings that have been preserved.
 Lunch: Box lunch.
 Afternoon: Explore some of Kingston's historic sites and landmarks by bus. Founded in 1673 on a First Nation site called Katarokwi, the settlement was eventually referred to as "the King's Town" in honour of King George III, with the name shortening to "Kingston" by 1788. Kingston is also nicknamed the "Limestone City" because of the many historic buildings built with local limestone and was Canada’s first capital. Highlights include Bellevue House, the home of Canada's first Prime Minister, Sir John A. Macdonald; Queen’s University, established in 1841; and the Martello towers, part of the city’s fortifications. There are 21 National Historic Sites of Canada located in Kingston in addition to numerous galleries and museums.
 Dinner: Dinner on your own to explore an array of dining options.
   
Accommodations: Confederation Place Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 7: Coach to Gananoque/1000 Islands Cruise/Arthur Childs Heritage Museum/Farewell Dinner
(Sunday, June 28)

Note: A valid passport is required for all participants for the 1000 Islands cruise which makes a stop at Boldt Castle - on the US side of the border. US and Canadian citizens will be required to have the appropriate documents.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel before we board the coach to Gananoque and the picturesque 1000 Islands.
 Morning: Enjoy an enchanting and scenic cruise through the Thousand Islands including Zavikon Island, Millionaire's Row, the St. Lawrence Seaway and the 1000 Islands Bridge. Participants will disembark at Heart Island, home of the famous Boldt Castle for a 2 hour historic visit. Share the story George C. Boldt, millionaire proprietor of the world famous Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City, who set out to build a full size Rhineland castle in Alexandria Bay, on picturesque Heart Island. The grandiose structure was to be a display of his love for his wife, Louise.
 Lunch: Lunch on board the cruise.
 Afternoon: Reflect on the history of the area as you explore the exhibit halls and interactive displays at the Arthur Childs Heritage Museum of 1000 Islands. The building is reminiscent of the original island cottages and fabulous hotels that were built during the Golden Era and the site on which the Heritage Museum now stands was originally the main station for the Thousand Islands Railway. Learn about the formation of the 1000 Islands and its unique flora and fauna. Walk in the footsteps of the First Nations people, early settlers and voyageurs and the combatants in the War of 1812.
 Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant.
   
Accommodations: Confederation Place Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Program Concludes/Departure
(Monday, June 29)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel is 7:00 a.m.
 Morning: Departures from Kingston after breakfast, according to individual travel plans. A shuttle transfer option will be available from the hotel in Kingston to Ottawa International Airport. Shuttle departs Kingston at 8:00 a.m.; approximate arrival at Ottawa International airport is 10:30 a.m. This concludes our program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Kingston, Ontario Culture & History
Kingston is home to a number of unique museums and historic properties including the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes, Miller Museum of Geology and Minerals, Penitentiary Museum, Museum of Health Care, Maclachan Woodworking Museum, Royal Military College Museum, Military Communications and Electronics Museum, Murney Tower Historic Site, Bellevue House, International Hockey Hall of Fame and more. For additional information, visit www.cityofkingston.ca/visitors/museums/local.asp
  Arts
Kingston boasts a thriving arts scene and is home to a number of galleries including Agnes Etherington Art Gallery, Union Gallery and Modern Fuel Gallery. Theatre goers can choose from a number of options including concerts and performances at the K-Rock Centre, the Grand Theatre, Domino Theatre and Kingston Symphony. For additional information, visit www.tourism.kingstoncanada.com/en/tourism/artssportsandrecreation/theatresgalleries.aspx
  Ottawa, Ontario Byward Market
Established by Lt-Col. John By in 1826, the ByWard Market is one of Canada's oldest and largest public markets. The legendary builder of the Rideau Canal, Colonel By himself laid out the street plan of the Market, designating George Street and York Street to be extra wide to accommodate the creation of a public market and gathering place. You'll find museums, cafés, specialty food shops, boutiques, galleries, restaurants, pubs, hair & aesthetics salons and more! The ByWard Market offers a unique experience for all. For additional information, visit www.byward-market.com/
  City Tours
Ottawa is filled with Capital sights and attractions – and just about as many ways to explore and see them. Some options include walking tours, amphibious boat tours and even bi-plane tours over the city. For additional information, visit www.ottawatourism.ca/en/visitors/what-to-do/tours-and-sightseeing
  Museums
Ottawa is home to many museums including Canadian Museum of Nature, Canadian War Museum, Currency Museum, Bytown Museum, Canadian Aviation and Space Museum, Canadian Museum of Science and Technology and the Royal Canadian Mint. For additional information, visit www.ottawatourism.ca/en/visitors/what-to-do/museums-and-galleries
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


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How to Be a Canadian, Even If You Already Are One


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Moon Ontario


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Selected Stories


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Spectacular Canada


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The Deptford Trilogy


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Three Weeks in Quebec City: The Meeting That Made Canada


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Why I Hate Canadians


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Wolfe at Quebec, The Man Who Won the French and Indian War


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Description: Hibbert brings the campaigns, life at Louisborg and dramatic capture of Quebec in 1759 to life in this tale of the neurotic, complex British general.





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