Chair of Niagara Food Festival Brad Morgan, Welland mayor Barry Sharpe, Niagara College acting VP Student and External Relations Gord Hunchak and culinary apprentice student Ben Carlsen toast to a new partnership announced Tuesday, March 27.
Niagara College will be a key ingredient in this year’s Niagara Food Festival – which takes place in downtown Welland September 7, 8 and 9.
NC was introduced as the title sponsor of this year’s Festival, in a partnership that creates the opportunity to combine Orientation events into the Peninsula’s Tastiest Party while raising the profile of Niagara College across Southern Ontario.
“Niagara College has been a part of the Niagara Food Festival for many years as a sponsor and vendor, and we’re very excited to bring our partnership to a new level,” said Morgan. “Niagara College is a very important part of our community and home to the Canadian Food and Wine Institute, which is famous for its unique approach to food, beer and wine education. We think it’s a perfect pairing with the Peninsula’s Tastiest Party.”
“We recognize and appreciate that this is a very well-run family-friendly event that is also a major highlight among Niagara’s many great festivals.” said Gord Hunchak, Niagara College’s acting Vice President of Student and External Relations. “Now, with the new Festival date in early September, this creates a fantastic opportunity for an enhanced partnership with Niagara College.”
For 2012, the Niagara Food Festival moves from its traditional early-October date to early September. The date change accommodates one of the key elements of Niagara College’s sponsorship. As it coincides with the end of Niagara College’s Orientation Week, the festival’s opening night, Friday, September 7, will be Niagara College Night at the Niagara Food Festival. The night will feature a major headline act on the Festival’s main stage, as well as other College connections designed to draw new and returning Niagara College students, staff, faculty and alumni.
“We believe the Niagara Food Festival is the ideal venue to celebrate the return of Niagara College students to Niagara and to warmly welcome those here for the first time,” said Hunchak. “For students who are new to Niagara College or new to our community, whether they are from across Ontario or from across the world, Niagara College night at the Niagara Food Festival is a chance for them to see first hand the warm hospitality of Welland and the Niagara region.”
Hunchak also said that with the Orientation concert moving to the Festival, the College will host on-campus community barbecues for students and neighbours.
To ensure a safe and successful event, the partners have committed to providing increased transportation and security, as well as implementing a wrist-band policy for the sale of wine and beer at this year’s Festival. Further details of the sponsorship include the re-branding of the Niagara Food Festival’s Mobile Culinary Theatre to highlight Niagara College and its Canadian Food and Wine Institute, and the return of the Niagara College Teaching Winery as the Festival’s exclusive wine vendor.
“Partnering with the Niagara Food Festival is a great opportunity to highlight some of our specialized and unique programs, especially those within our renowned Canadian Food and Wine Institute,” said Hunchak.