Community turns out for Beef in the Burg


By Joel Charron

What started out as a General Amherst High School cancer foundation fundraiser as transformed into an annual community barbecue.

The Amherstburg Rotary Club hosted the seventh annual Beef in the Burg last Wednesday evening at Toddy Jones Park under near perfect weather conditions.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better day,” said Rotarian Carl Gibb. “There were some clouds in the afternoon and I got a little worried but this is fantastic. It’s just a nice outing in the middle of the week.”

Gibb said the Beef in the Burg as become an event the entire community look forward to.

“The food is fantastic and you can’t beat the price,” stated Gibb.

Gibb noted that if it wasn’t for all the sponsors contributing to the event, Beef in the Burg would be a lot more difficult to host.

“Without the support of all our major sponsors, none of this would happen,” he said. “If we had to put this on ourselves we would never make a go of it.”

Beef in the Burg volunteers Bart DiPaolo, Tim Girard, Mike Bates and Barry Loreto perpare a tray of roast beef sandwiches. Over 400 people attended the annual event, which was the best attended Beef in the Burg to date.

The Beef in the Burg, which in previous years has been held on a Friday, was switched to the middle of the week because the Rotary Club thought it would avoid conflict with other events and attract more families.

Gibb applauded the efforts of Rennie Rota of Sobeys, who donated the food, Chuck Kelly of The Athletic Club, who donated door prizes and Rosa White who organized the preparation and distribution of the food.

“It’s always a lot more fun to get something really tasty when you’re donating to a good cause,” said Rota.

According to Rota, 250 pounds of roast beef was prepared by the Verdi Club, which is down from the 350 pounds that was cooked last year.

“We had to scale it down a bit because last year we had so much left over,” explained Rota. “This year looks like we planned it out perfectly.”

Rota noted it’s amazing what can happen when people come together to put on a quality event for a good cause.

“It’s very special when it’s all community oriented individuals helping out for a great cause,” he said.

Former town councilor Rosa White said she continued to volunteer with the event because “Amherstburg is still in her heart.”

“Giving back is a part of who I am,” said White. “It’s great watching everybody working together and making sure that this happens. This event is great for the community.”

Amherstburg Rotary Club president Lena Lazna said the Beef in the Burg is a good pre-curser to the Rotary Club’s RibFest happening July 6-8.

“Beef in the Burg is the perfect prologue to RibFest, which is only a month away,” she said.

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