Ice Cream Festival scoops up local support, draws in estimated crowd of 10,000

 

IceCreamFestPhotoBy Adam D’Andrea

 

Local ice cream fanatics got an opportunity to mix, mingle and indulge in their favourite desert at Toddy Jones Park last Tuesday.

The Amherstburg Ice Cream Festival was held July 1, coinciding with Fort Malden National Historic Site’s annual Canada Day festivities happening next door. First-time organizer Kim Hamilton said around 10,000 attendees were counted from the gates between Toddy Jones Park and Fort Malden.

“When I stopped for a moment and looked over the park I felt deep pride because there were so many people at Toddy Jones Park that I couldn’t see through the crowds.  It was very incredible,” said Hamilton.

Although dark clouds throughout the morning may have concerned organizers and attendees, by early afternoon the weather cleared up and made for an ideal festival atmosphere.

“There were a few sleepless nights before the event worrying and preparing for every possible disaster.  In the end it was an amazing day,” said Hamilton. “The vendors all told me that they made more money at this event than any other festival they have worked, and this was only a one-day event.”

But Amherstburg’s ice cream addicts weren’t just there to satisfy their sweet tooth. The event also acted as a fundraiser for the Windsor-Essex County ALS Society and Group Hug Apparel.

“I will hopefully have the final numbers next week,” said Hamilton. “I am hoping we can give each organization $500 when said and done.  That would make me super happy.”

If asked to organize the festival in 2015, Hamilton said she will be looking at possible ways to make the event “bigger and better” including more sponsorships and government grants. Due to their support and contributions toward making the festival a success, Hamilton thanked her balloon artists and face painters, C&E Lawn Care, Lisa Gretzky, Chantelle Boismier and Fort Malden.

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