A special Salute to Sponsors, Supporters and Volunteers was held on Thurs., Sept. 27, 2012, to recognize and thank those who helped make a success of the first Oakville Family Ribfest, organized by the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar in June this year.

The first edition of the Oakville Family Ribfest took place on the grounds of the Trafalgar Campus of Sheridan College, June 22-24, 2012. The free event saw 23,684 people come to enjoy ribs, refreshments and riveting entertainment that brought blues, rock, jazz and more to the Ribfest stage. A total of seven ribbers participated.


One goal of the Oakville Family Ribfest was to be as ‘green’ as possible. All garbage was brought to recycling stations throughout the site, which were staffed with the help of 300 community volunteers, and an 85% recycling rate was achieved, far above the norm for a first event.


The site also included a free Kids’ PlayZone with bouncy castles, rock climbing tower, face painters and much more. Several artisans and craft vendors, including students from Sheridan College, put up displays.


To help launch Ribfest, the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar received a three-year, $157,000 grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation. This funding, plus the support of the event’s extensive list of sponsors, enabled the Ribfest to be free as well as generate new philanthropic dollars to share with the community. All-in-all, the event had more than 50 sponsors and hundreds upon hundreds of volunteers and supporters.


Master of Ceremonies Jim Wilson of the Rotary Club of Oakville Trafalgar introduced Ribfest chair Trish Peden and Sponsorship Chair Brian Simpson.  Among the guests were Dr. Jeff Zabudsky, President of Sheridan College; Bruce Galloway , Chair of the Oakville Hospital Foundation; Dave Chisholm of Budds’; Mike Marner of First Ontario Credit; Halton Regional Chair Gary Carr; Gilmar Militar of the Ontario Trillium Foundation; cartoonist Steve Nease; the Oakville Beaver’s Daniel Baird; Metroland’s David Harvey; Jeff Parker of Instant Imprints; and Ben Lyman and Jessica Clarke of TVCogeco.


The presentation ceremony at Ribfest’s Salute to Sponsors, Supporters and Volunteers was followed by a masterful performance by Sheridan College’s Performing Arts students.


The distribution of funds raised from Ribfest and other club activities was also announced at the event, and included a $20,000 gift to Sheridan College in support of its scholarship and support programs, and $50,000 in support of the new Oakville Hospital.