JARVIS – The 23rd annual Jarvis Cornfest will have a new element this year. Gord Caruthers, who owns the Jarvis Country Market, which hosts the annual event, has added a special tribute to First Nations to open this year’s event, Friday night, Aug. 15th, on the main stage.
Laforme and the Healers are booked to appear, starting at 6 pm. Both Laforme, of the Mississaugas of the New Credit, and The Healers, from Six Nations of the Grand River Territory, are very popular with both Native and non-Native fans and should bring a good crowd.
Also performing throughout the weekend will be Dave Cook, on Sat. from 12-1 pm, Sterling Stead, at 1:30 pm and at 4:30 pm, the Paul Nathan Band from 3-4 pm, the Steel County Band from 6-7:30 pm, and a ZZ Top Cover band from 8 pm until close.
Sunday, there will be a karaoke open mic, with it all climaxing on the main stage with the Christine Smith from 12-12:45 and Paul Atkinson Band between 1:30 and 2:15.
Everything gets underway Aug. 15th and will run to the 17th, with a full itinerary including crafts, games, a petting zoo, venders of all kinds and all the trappings of what has become one of the finest country fairs in the area.
It all culminates with a giant fireworks display. Caruthers reports that last year’s fireworks display rivaled that of Burlington and Hamilton’s Canada Day fireworks show, according to many of those who attended last year.
One feature of the Jarvis Cornfest, which is held at the Jarvis Country Market, 2095 Main St. N., Jarvis, is that it is a free admission to the public with sponsors and advertisers covering the full cost of the event.
Since it first began 23 years ago, the Jarvis Cornfest has become an important thread in the tapestry of Jarvis and Haldimand County in general.
Carruthers and a committee of about six people began work on the 2014 event immediately following the 2013 festival, and will do the same this year, always looking for ways to improve and grow the event. This year’s tribute to First Nations is one of those changes which Carruthers believes “is the right thing to do” in bringing the people of Six Nations and New Credit and those of Haldimand together in an atmosphere of great food, great family fun and great entertainment. .
The event has been through some hard times recently, created by too much work and not enough volunteer help to pull it off. But Carruthers and his committee have come through it all with renewed energy and vitality, and have grown the event since those days.
Carruthers estimates that there has been 30,000 or more people through the gates of the Jarvis Cornfest over the past three years, and expects that trend to continue to grow this year as well.
A part of the proceeds of the Jarvis Cornfest will go towards the Townsend Lions Club, the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, Camp Trillium and to 16-year-old Annaleise Carr from Norfolk County – the youngest person to swim across Lake Ontario.