6th Rotary Ribfest drew record 16,500 partiers

July 22, 2015   ·   0 Comments

With lots of sunshine, only a little rain, and large crowds this past weekend, the 6th annual Orangeville Rotary Club Ribfest was a definite success.

“[It was] a little wet on Friday night, but Saturday and Sunday were hot and sunny, the ribs were sizzling, the beer was cold and Orangeville Ribfest was quite a party!,” wrote Ingrid Sproxton, Chairperson of the Ribfest Committee in a press release. “Our wonderful volunteer team – over 100 strong this year – kept Ribfest going smoothly, .”

This year featured six Ribbers – four returning from previous years (People’s Choice winners Boss Hogs, Pistol Pete’s, Gator BBQ and Blazin’ BBQ), and two new Ribbers (Crazy Canuck Smokers and Billy Bones BBQ). The rib-judging contest took place Saturday afternoon, with the seven judges spending just under an hour sampling ribs and sauce from each Ribber.

This year’s judges were Orangeville Mayor Jeremy Williams, Councillor Don Kidd, Lucy Sanzo of Scotiabank, Chris Vernon from the Orangeville Banner, Tabitha Wells from the Citizen, Charles McCabe from the Rotary Club and Cameron Wood from Roto-Mill.

The two newbies cleaned up at the judge’s table, with Judges’ Choice Best Ribs going to Billy Bones BBQ, and Judges’ Choice Best Sauce being awarded to Crazy Canuck Smokers. Boss Hogs once again took home the People’s Choice Award, for the fourth year in a row.

Although last year’s car show had to fight against rain and thunderstorms, this year they had blue skies, bright sunshine, and gorgeous, hot weather, bringing out a large number of vehicles.

Saturday was a record-breaking day for the Ribfest, with more than 10,000 attendees that day alone, leaving the grand total from the weekend at over 16,500.

“Over the entire weekend, attendance was up 5 per cent from last year,” wrote Ms. Sproxton in a press release. “We won’t know for a few weeks what the final number will be for net funds raised but, as in previous years, all funds will go towards the Splashpad in Fendley Park, which is now up and running. Based on preliminary numbers, it’s looking good for achieving this year’s fundraising goal of $60,000.”

Sunday’s guests were entertained throughout the day by all Bluegrass music, and had the opportunity to nab a free cupcake to help celebrate the opening of the splash pad. Four Paws flying entertained attendees with three shows that showcased the talents of their dogs, and Toms Martial Arts provided two shows full of energy as well.

This year, the Volunteer of the Year award went to Troy Everson, for going above and beyond the call of duty.

“The Rotary Club of Orangeville would like to congratulate Troy and to extend a huge thank-you to each and every volunteer who helped us out this year,” said Ms. Sproxton. “We simply could not put on an event like Ribfest without you.”

After Ribfest wrapped up, all the Ribbers, and All Popped Up (Kettle Corn), donated all of the leftover food to Choices Youth Shelter and Family Transition Place in Orangeville.

“Thank-you to our many volunteers, our fabulous bands and performers, our sponsors, our ribbers and all the Ribfest vendors, and to you, the citizens of Orangeville, Dufferin County and beyond, for helping to make the 6th annual Rotary Ribfest such a success,” the press release concluded. “See you in 2016 – July 15, 16 and 17 – save the dates!”

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