Past Industry News

George Canyon, Aaron Pritchett and Emerson Drive Coming to the Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show

The Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show, is thrilled to announce the second concert performance at the Grandstand for this year’s fair.

On Friday, October 5thth a triple bill will headline the Canadian Country Smash Up featuring George Canyon, Aaron Pritchett and Emerson Drive on stage. Gates open at 6:30pm.

For well over a decade, Emerson Drive has been a staple in the country music community, known for being a band to crank out the hits, deliver electrifying stage shows and wow audiences all across North America. During their evolving career, the Canadian band has scored numerous hits such as “I Should Be Sleeping,” “Fall Into Me,” “Last One Standing” and their emotional, chart-topping ballad, “Moments.” They have racked up countless award nominations in both the U.S. country market at the ACM’s and CMA’s, as well as in Canada where they have picked up multiple trophies for Group or Duo of the Year from the CCMA (Canadian Country Music Association). But it was their 2007 hit, “Moments,” that pushed Emerson Drive over the top in country music.

To call George Canyon “accomplished” would be the understatement of the century. Throughout his career he has won multiple awards including Juno Awards, CCMA and ECMA Awards to name a few. George has been inducted into the Nova Scotia Country Music Hall of Fame, recorded 12 albums and regularly performs all over the world. George Canyon’s latest album is titled Southside of Heaven. George was overjoyed to once again work with producer Jeff Johnson. The pair have collaborated on twelve brand new tracks including the current single, “Better Off In Love” and featuring wonderful renditions of Stompin’ Tom Connors’ “The Hockey Song.”

Aaron Pritchett’s legacy continues to be unstoppable. His authentic desire to connect with his fans, whether it be onstage, via his digital platforms, in person or through his music, has sustained and grown a robust and loyal fan base for well over a decade. Pritchett has charted anthems like “Dirt Road In Em”, “Let’s Get Rowdy,” “Hold My Beer (Certified GOLD),” and also appealed to the softer side with powerful hits like “Done You Wrong,” and his recent top 5 smash – “When A Momma’s Boy Meets A Daddy’s Girl.” Recently, Pritchett was welcomed back to the nomination circles with a Juno for Country Album of the Year, as well as multiple CCMA Award nominations, including Male Artist of the Year!

TICKETS for The Canadian Country Smash Up featuring Aaron Pritchett, George Canyon and Emerson Drive go on sale Friday August 24th at 9:00 a.m. Thanks to our community partners including Simcoe Reformer, Scotlynn Group of Companies and KX94.7. Purchase online at, by phone 519-426-7280 x 233, or in person at the fairgrounds, 172 South Drive, Simcoe – Building #5

“Party on the Track” presented by Ramblin’ Road remains a fan favourite for our Friday and Saturday Grandstand Shows. “We are thrilled to have Norfolk County’s Ramblin’ Road Brew Farm as sponsor of Party on the Track. Having local support and the recognition that goes with it is another step in putting our great community on the map” said Development Officer Catherine Akins. “We are very happy to have been offered the opportunity to partner with the Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show as a Presenting Sponsor of “Party on the Track”. I truly believe that the Fair is a showcase event for Norfolk County and as a supporter for many years, stepping up as a local small business is a real honour”, states John Picard, owner of the Ramblin’ Road Brewery Farm.

Trackside Reserved seating for the Canadian Country Smash Up is $29. General Admission (standing), on the track is only $25. Tickets are limited! This will be a licensed area and only available to track patrons. Grandstand seating is free with paid admission to the Fair. Party on the Track gates open at 6:30pm on the day of show where you can enjoy your favourite Ramblin Road beverage. This is an all ages event.

New brands and new bands at the Harvest Beer & Wine Festival will be taking place Friday, October 5 to Monday, October 8 beginning at 1pm each day in the Rec Centre Arena. Come and discover Norfolk County’s bounty of beverages under one roof. Live musical entertainment each day with great new evening acts. Friday – The hard rocking styles of AC/DC Canada. On Saturday – Canadian Star Marshall Dane. Sunday – It’s Fiddlestix with their power rock fiddles and dancers. Monday brings the Norfolk Karaoke Championship with a $1,000 first prize to the winner of this all day event! The Rec Centre will be licensed and open to all ages. For more information, full schedules on upcoming events within the Rec Centre during Fair visit

The Harvest Dinner Concert goes “Back to the Barn” for its 8th year. This is a separately ticketed event. The Harvest Dinner includes a VIP package consisting of admission to the Fair, parking, drink tickets, your chance to win amazing prizes plus a wonderful presentation of local food, beverages and desserts. Then diners will be whisked up to the Rec Centre to enjoy COLIN LINDEN with special guests JACK DeKEYZER and SUE FOLEY. All three are Juno Award winners and seating is limited. Tickets available at the Fair Office, online at or by phone at 519-426-7280 x 233. The Harvest Dinner is sponsored by Blue Star Ford Lincoln, Ramblin’ Road, Tri-County Insurance, Oldies 99.7, Ontario South Coast Wineries and Growers Association and Sobeys. This is a fundraising initiative for the Norfolk County Fair.

Don’t forget to buy your tickets early and save! Advance tickets for admission to the Fair can be purchased at your local Roulston’s locations in Simcoe, Port Dover and Delhi. Ride one day, all day vouchers are also available for a limited time. Don’t miss out. All tickets are also available at the Fair office, 172 South Drive, Simcoe or online at

Click here to read the full press release.

Get on Board with the Conductor’s Choice Culinary Tour in St. Thomas

On September 22, 2018 board the train for a culinary adventure exploring local flavours and experience the #tasteofstthomas and celebrate our agriculturally rich surroundings! Enjoy the full day from coffee and brunch to dinner or choose only the day trip or dinner portion – either way guests will experience the #tasteofstthomas and discover some of the emerging local farms and businesses working to provide our community and its visitors the very best in local flavour.


Conductor’s Choice melds the exciting new direction of St. Thomas’ culinary landscape with its rich railway history – from CASO to ECRM and all stops in between, this is a one of a kind opportunity to celebrate what makes us #stthomasproud.


This event is presented by Railway City Tourism​ in partnership with Savour Elgin.​


Click here to read the full press release.

Alton Farms Estate Winery is Celebrating its fifth anniversary with a Fresh New Look!

August 8th, 2018 – Five years in business cannot go unnoticed!  …so we have a rebranded ourselves and are throwing a 2-day party! Everyone is invited! This will be a celebration to remember! 


The first 50 people each day will receive a $5 gift certificate! Come and meet the Altons and share in the festivities with them. Enjoy live music throughout the afternoon with Paul Garrett and Sue MacIntyre. Heaven’s Wildlife Rescue Rehabilitation & Education Centre will be there with their rescued wildlife, showcasing the rehabilitation of wild animals – a wonderful experience for young and old alike. Hop on the hay wagon and tour the vineyards, and learn how wine is made! 


Click here to read the full press release.


Grand Bend and Area Extends Tourism Season into September

GRAND BEND – Fall into Broadway this September! Businesses in Grand Bend and area, through the support of the Government of Ontario’s Regional Tourism Organization 1 (Ontario’s Southwest) and 4 (Huron-Perth-Waterloo-Wellington) are partnering on a new campaign designed to extend the peak tourism season in Huron County.


More than just beaches and bars, this community-driven initiative has created the opportunity for the bustling destination to expand on its reputation as a summer hot spot and allow visitors to explore all the area has to offer in the fall.


Click here to read the full press release.

Announcing Concerts in the Vineyard

July 11th, 2018 – Today, Burning Kiln Winery, located on Front Road near Turkey Point, Ontario, which overlooks the UNESCO World Biosphere of Long Point, announced its first ever Concert in the Vineyard Series.


“We are thrilled to announce that we have four incredible twilight performances coming to our Vineyard in August and September”, said Karen Matthews, General Manager. “We are grateful to the support of the Province of Ontario, through the Celebrate Ontario fund, along with local community partners. We are excited to share the concert experience and our award-winning wines with visitors from across the province”.


The lineup includes:

August 2 – Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Inductees, The Drifters

August 23 – Juno Award-winning crooner of Jazz standards, Matt Dusk

September 13 – From Blue Rodeo, Jim Cuddy

September 27 – A Harvest Party feat. Canadian Country Music Award Nominees the Western Swing Authority


Click here to read the full press release.

Bluewater Borderfest Festival – One Month Away & Attracting Thousands to Sarnia-Lambton Area

June 28, 2018 – Sarnia, Ontario; The Bluewater BorderFest Music Festival is only one month away and already attracting thousands of people to The Sarnia Lambton Area on July 26th, 27th and July 28th for the concert events. Saturday’s Bluewater BorderFest headlining band – Arkells are one of the hottest and top Canadian Rock Bands today, and last weekend headlined a sold-out Tim Horton’s Field show in Hamilton, Ontario with 24,000 people in attendance.


“We are very excited and pleased with the ticket sales and response so far, throughout the months of May and June”, explained Mark Perrin, Director of Bluewater BorderFest. “We are looking forward to a strong July too, as one of our goals has been to aid in Sarnia being a destination tourism location, as it will provide a boosted to the regions economic impact while increasing both growth and revenue for many local businesses in Sarnia Lambton. To date, we have had people purchasing tickets for Bluewater BorderFest from British Columbia, Alberta, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, and Michigan, as well as, from across Ontario attending from Kingston, Toronto, Barrie, Hamilton, London, Windsor and many additional cities.”


Bluewater BorderFest is very proud to contribute to the local business economy as one of the largest tourist attractions for the Sarnia-Lambton Area, Bluewater BorderFest is a non-profit event, with the goal of creating as many local partnerships as possible. “We know that the success, growth and continuation of our Bluewater BorderFest begin with great community support and we strongly believe with the communities support we can continue to produce an event that the community is proud of, while it creates awareness and funding that supports many non-profit and charity organizations within our communities.” Said Perrin. For 2018, our community partners have included: Pathways Centre for Children, Bluewater Tae Kwon Do, Canadian Blood Services, Canadian Cancer Society, St. Joes Hospice, Huron Boys Home, Community Living, Parrot Heads on the St. Clair, Bluewater Health and more.


Click here to read the full press release.

Introducing the Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab

Do you have a new tourism idea or experience you’re trying to introduce? The Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab is looking to help take your idea to the next level. This new tourism incubator’s goal is to find, foster, and support new tourism ideas that will enhance the region’s current offerings and increase visits. The new “Spark” program will match selected participants with an industry mentor and provide a $3,000 grant to help take their idea to the next level of development or implementation. Participants also gain access to a network of tourism innovators and entrepreneurs and receive a guide outlining other supporting resources provided by their partners.


The Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab is a big step forward in development for the region and is valuable for bringing more tourism revenue into the region. This initiative is being led by Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island and will begin in Windsor Essex Ontario before being expanded to other regions in the province next year. Applications from individuals, small businesses, and non-profit organizations based in the city of Windsor and/or the County of Essex will be accepted from June 12 to August 1, 2018. The chosen applicants will be invited to a pitch session in October where the program participants will be selected.


For more information visit

The Grand Opening of Creative Collections

Creative Collections is a group of a dozen small business entrepreneurs that have gotten together to form a collective.  Sharing a rented space that was previously empty, together they have created a beautiful boutique. Not only is it a great place, but it allows each business owner an opportunity to express their creativity and passion for what they make and do. More importantly, the collective allows them to start up their own small business for very little investment of time and money.  Both things are key reasons why people never get started on their dream of opening their own business.  


There are many activities going on at the boutique over the opening three days and we invite you to come to take a look and share what we are up to with the public. Hopefully, we’ll find others who have dreams of opening their own business too.


Click here to see the full flyer for more details.

Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab seeks to Spark New Ideas in Windsor Essex

Windsor, ON – Founding Partners Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island, Southwest Ontario Tourism Corporation and Libro Credit Union officially announced the Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab at the St. Clair Centre for the Arts today. This new tourism incubator is being launched with a pilot in Windsor Essex, Ontario, in 2018, and then will be expanded to other regions in the province next year. Its goal is to find, foster and support new tourism ideas, experiences and collaborative partnerships that will enhance the region’s current offerings, motivate travel and increase visits.


The Lab’s “Spark” Program will match selected participants with a tourism industry mentor and provide a $3,000 grant to help take their idea to the next level of development or implementation. Participants will also gain access to a network of tourism innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders, and receive a guide outlining other resources and support services provided by their partners. This is the first program of its kind for tourism development in the province.


Click here to read the full press release.

It’s not the Destination, it’s the Journey

Tourism Sarnia-Lambton and Grand Bend Motorplex want you to Cruise the Coast


Monday, May 28, 2018 – Earlier today, officials from Grand Bend Motorplex announced a new partnership with Tourism Sarnia-Lambton and specifically the Cruise the Coast initiative. “Tourism Sarnia-Lambton has always been a great advocate for all of us in the area. We hope that everyone coming to the track for these events will stay an extra day or two and visit the wonderful things our region has to offer.” Paul Spriet,  Grand Bend Motorplex.


The Sarnia-Lambton area is also known as Ontario’s Blue Coast, referring to its proximity to Lake Huron and the St. Clair River, and more specifically their miles of beautiful shorelines. While navigating these shorelines, you will see, award-winning floral gardens, sandy beaches, picturesque parks and charming waterfront communities. One of those waterfront communities being Grand Bend, which is home to Grand Bend Motorplex.


Situated on over 400 acres, Grand Bend Motorplex consists of a Drag Strip, Road Course and a ¼ mile oval track, all of which play host to some of the biggest motorsports events in Canada.  For 2018, with assistance from Tourism Sarnia-Lambton, Grand Bend Motorplex will be hosting 2 upcoming events with added incentives for anyone cruising the coast.


Promo Video –


See the full press release here.