"Fun in the Sun"…
…in the Germania Park, at Lake Niapenko. This is where the K.G. Narrhalla ‘58 hosts this annual summer event.
It did not look as if it was going to be a sunny day – around noon – and there were only a few people fishing for carp in the lake. Huge thunderheads started to build up in the west and heavy clouds wandered slowly across the sky. But it did clear up after a while and the rest of the afternoon was sunny and bright. So much for the weather report!
The fun part started when the guests arrived from as far as Kitchener, Brantford, Brampton, Hamilton, Toronto and surrounding areas. Since they all know each other from the rare carnival events during the winter, they now had an opportunity to renew old acquaintances in the summer and a chance for a leisurely conversation and the exchange of ideas without a lot of inescapable noise in the background.
In the meantime the regulars started to prepare for the fun part by blowing up balloons, some with air and some with water for the water-toss – which followed the ‘shoe-toss’ – all opportunities for young and old to get involved with during the afternoon.
Tables were being covered with plastic tablecloths, big paper suns were applied on every suitable surface and the club building started to take on a festive atmosphere. By the time the guests started to arrive, the musical entertainment was ready to go, and the kitchen-crew set up the barbeque and condiment table for the schnitzel-dinner and bratwurst – hot off the grill – scheduled for about 3 pm. The general agreement, by the way: "Great Food"! Unfortunately it was too cold this year to go swimming in the lake and policy is that the fish that were caught had to be released again also! Those are the rules!
Kudos to all the selfless helpers that toiled to provide the
wonderful ambiance to make sure that the visitors really had ‘Fun in the
Sun’ again, this year.
"This is your Festival"…
…in Gage Park, where Hamilton’s version of Toronto’s ‘Caravan’ takes place once a year. Surrounding the large clearing in Gage Park are a great variety of vendors and food outlets of all descriptions - offering their services to a grateful public.
The Germania Club of Hamilton hosts one of the largest food operations each year, where hundreds of visitors can enjoy delicious sausages, hamburgers, schnitzels and fruit juices.
If you are in the mood for something other than traditional fare you could try everything from African Specialties to Belgian waffles.
This event is almost reminiscent of a giant open-air flea market where you can buy flags, jewellery, clothing and many wonderful handcrafted items.
Various bands and musicians also provided entertainment on the large stage during the day and late into the evening on Thursday - ‘Canada Day’.
Of course this year they did not have to compete with
"Caravan" in Toronto since this event has been re-scheduled for around
…the new favorite at Downey’s "Strawberry Festival" this year was available for tasting in the wine boutique at Downey’s Farm Market in Caledon, north of Brampton. Judging by the crowded wine boutique one can only come to the logical conclusion that ‘Fruit Wines’ are "IN". More and more people have discovered the pleasure of a leisurely glass of wine after dinner or just for the enjoyment it can provide. Many of the ones I talked had read my report in Echo Germanica, some mentioned that a friend had told them about Downey’s, or that they were introduced to the fruit wines at a party or a dinner. So, ‘word of mouth’ seems to be an effective marketing method also.
In the relatively short time that Downey’s have been in the fruit wine business, they have already garnered an enviable reputation for the quality of their prize-winning products. You may recall that I wrote about this in the past and mentioned that they won "Best of Show" with some of their wines at the Toronto Wine and Cheese Show last year. Not to mention the Gold, Silver and Bronze medals which were also won in the past.
Downey’s Wine Boutique is really a haven – and heaven – for fruit wine lovers. All the available wines may be tasted and compared there – with the knowledgeable input by the staff, if required. Whether you like them sweet or dry, you be the judge. The price is right also!
What else was going on at the Strawberry Festival and the Canada Day Celebrations?
Well, it started out with a strawberry pancake breakfast in the morning, served by the Rotary Club – that lasted all day. Entertainment included Dickson Reid, with Canadian folk songs, Brian Crawford, (vocals and piano) the DogSmart – K9 team, Dae Nuvo magic and juggling, plus games and the farm animals in the Kritter Koral. There were free balloons and birthday cake and of course all the wonderful selections at the farm market inside. For more information on happenings during the rest of the year, visit Downey’s website at: www.downeysfarm.on.ca
Happy Birthday Canada!
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