Summer Beer Fest includes more of Downtown Cornwall

Jan 5, 2017

The recipe for a popular summertime event includes a liberal dose of downtown, and a new location.

Summer Beer Fest will take place on June 24 at Lamoureux Park in Cornwall, and will include a number of culinary delights prepared by downtown restaurants.

The Summer Beer Fest is an interactive craft beer tasting event that is founded on the core principle of celebrating the best of our community that is organized every summer by the Seaway Food Festival. The main objective is to promote Cornwall as a “foodie destination” in southeastern Ontario and attract tourists from Quebec, and the United States. With the tremendous growth of our local culinary scene and the development of the Ontario Brewing industry, especially in the Capital Region, Cornwall’s Summer Beer Fest has become the intersection of the best beer and food in the area.

With a new location so close to downtown, the recipe for success is only sure to improve.

Last summer’s edition drew over 1,750 festival goers and with an even bigger turnout expected this summer, Summer Beer Fest will move to the spacious riverfront of Lamoureux Park.

“In the back of my mind, this was always part of the natural progression of what we were trying to do. But none of this would be possible without the tremendous support we have seen from our ‘Seaway Foodies’, the city, the restaurants, and our partners,” said Seaway Ferstival director Sebastien Manigat. “We think we are on the cusp of building something really great here, something that the community as a whole can be proud of. We are very conscious of the unique experience that Summer Beer Fest has presented consumers with in the past, and with this move we are very focused on continuing to deliver a top-notch event.”

With the change of location from the NAV Centre to Lamoureux Park comes a new set of opportunities but also a few challenges. With this reality in mind, this past fall the Summer Beer Fest added three new team members: Operations Manager Matthew Girgis (owner of Crooked Cashé), Sales and Community Partnerships Coordinator Justin Towndale (current City Councillor), and Event Coordinator Laura Ellam.

“We have been planning, discussing, and putting several items in motion for months now. We are very aware of what this new space entails and all of us are focused on delivering a fantastic day for the community,” said Ellam.

Again, guests can expect local eating establishment will be participating as food vendors during the event. They will be displaying unique menus representative of their establishments. Last year’s vendors included local favorites such as Love Love Food, Table 21, Eight Zero Zero, ESCA Pizza, and Sheep’s Head. As for the participating breweries, guests can expect another diverse set of regional vendors. Last year, 16 breweries brought over 60 beers and ciders for guest to enjoy. A number of breweries and vendors have already confirmed their participation and the full list of participants will be released in the upcoming months.

“Well, without divulging much, we can confirm that we want to utilize our new space to enhance the festival as much as possible. For example, we will be adding a ‘market’ featuring local producers, artists, and handmade/homemade items. We are also looking into new ways to improve the overall experience from structural changes to aesthetics. Lastly, but most importantly we are extending the day until 11 p.m. to include a major concert to cap off the night. We are very excited and can’t wait to share all the details with you in the next couple of months,” said Girgis.

Tickets will go on sale in March and past guests can expect a similar format as years past. But putting this type of endeavor together doesn’t come easily overnight. It takes a concerted effort from stakeholders, sponsors, and vendors: “We are very aware of all the different moving parts that have to come together. But we also know that we have a unique opportunity to assemble brewers, artists, vendors, and local businesses together to produce something pretty great. In fact, we view this as a perfect opportunity to give back to our community. Last year, Summer Beer Fest worked with Crafting-A-Cure to raise money and awareness for JDFR. Our hope is to continue to work with local organizations and use our platform to try to make a difference locally,” said Towndale.

If you have any questions regarding sponsorships or community partnerships feel free to email Justin Towndale at If you’d like to participate as a vendor or would like to request more information about becoming vendor, please email

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