CFN– What is it about Ribfest in Cornwall Ontario that worked so well Friday night when Lift Off crashed in flames? One wag suggested more people attended Ribfest Friday night than attended the whole Lift Off Weekend.
Was it because Economic Development’s Bob Peters wasn’t allowed to be in the middle? Was it because it wasn’t clique ran? Was it because there aren’t any Vegetarian’s in Cornwall? Was the beer colder? The Rides better? Music Better? More access to dollar store sunglasses for $20 per pair?
No, it’s about community. With no entrance fee people from all over could come down to the biggest party of the Summer. Anyone could walk in. Sure some could not afford to buy some of the premium items, but they also didn’t have to listen to people like Seaway News manager Rick Shaver after a few beers spew about “those welfare bums” not buying a ticket to get in sitting outside of the fence.
Is Ribfest perfect? Nope. There were huge issues with the wait time for beer tokens? What is it about Ontario and Saudi Arabia that you’re not trusted to wander around with a beer like most Country Fairs?
Summertime is when you take a break. It’s awesome to see friends and family you haven’t seen in awhile and it’s always a blast to party, especially with some good music in the background and at the end of the day does your average local care if it’s Lou Gramm or a local cover band?
And that’s why Cornwall Ontario has chosen its preference for Ribfest over Lift Off even if Ribfest didn’t advertise with two of the largest media outlets in the city (CFN and Corus Radio were blocked out) and won’t make as much money for organizers as Lift Off did.
Maybe the powers that be in Cornwall can learn from Peterborough’s Musicfest?
The Peterborough Musicfest is a non-profit charitable organization that presents concerts every Wednesday and Saturday at 8:00pm on the shores of beautiful Little Lake in Del Crary Park, downtown Peterborough. All concerts are presented free of charge to ensure that all members of the community can enjoy an evening of entertainment in spite of economic or social barriers.
A secondary benefit of the Musicfest is the large economic impact that the event brings to the community through tourism. A 2010 Economic Impact Study revealed that the Musicfest supplies a $4.8 million impact to the region through hotels, restaurants and shopping.
Because the Musicfest is free-admission, it is funded completely through corporate sponsorship, fundraising initiatives, and private donations as well as through municipal support at all levels.
The Peterborough Musicfest is proud of the past 26 years and looks forward to its 27th season beginning on June 29, 2013. To learn more, visit our website at www.ptbomusicfest.ca
The people of Cornwall clearly have spoken. They don’t necessarily want balloons and deep down it’s not about the overpriced ribs as good as they are. Frankly I went down and I’m not big on standing in line to buy over priced food in styrofoam containers as good as I’m sure the ribs are.
I enjoyed my walk around and then headed to a new local restaurant that’s opened, had a yummy meal, and wrote a review. Local businesses on Pitt Street frankly don’t benefit from the current events at Lamoureux Park which is something that needs to be looked at and solutions found.
Proper management and true teamworkwork push can lead to awesome events and there’s no reason why we can’t have them in Cornwall too especially with our location and incredible downtown park.
Ribfest is a good start and I’m sure that local promoter Phil Shorey and his Cornwall Seaway Lion’s Club are happy with the results, but if anything should be learned is that the people of Cornwall Ontario really do love a good party and will come if you put one together.
What do you think Cornwall? Did you go to Ribfest and what was your favorite part? You can post your comments below.