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Newmarket is a small town north of Toronto, with a population of just 84,000. But when it comes to adaptation of technology it’s in the big league.

Downtown Newmarket
Downtown Newmarket

It has just won a Google eTown Award, which the search-engine giant says honours the towns and cities whose businesses are embracing the opportunities of the Internet.

“I am delighted to receive this prestigious award and congratulate our business community for embracing the Internet as a key driver of economic growth,” said Lois Brown, member of parliament for Newmarket-Aurora.

“I encourage all entrepreneurs to get online and experience for themselves the power of social media and how it can help their business grow.”

Lois Brown receives the award from Google's Sophie Chesters

Lois Brown receives the award from Google’s Sophie Chesters

The business-friendly Newmarket was one of five cities recognized this week. The others are Halifax, Saint-Sauveur, Que., Canmore, Alta. and Whistler, B.C. In choosing the five, Google said it worked with the independent research firm IPSOS to analyze the online strength of local small businesses across Canada.

“We’re proud to recognize the growing entrepreneurial spirit in Newmarket,” said Chris O’Neill, managing director of Google Canada.

“Every day, Canadians turn to the Internet looking for products and services, and it’s the businesses and communities engaging with consumers online that will lead Canada’s future economic growth.”

O’Neill noted that despite the growth of Internet use in the country, more than half of all Canadian small businesses still do not have a website.

The Newmarket photo is courtesy of the Town of Newmarket and the award photo is courtesy of Google Canada.