Good food, a great atmosphere, and incredible cars at this year’s Ribfest
There’s nothing more ‘small-town’ than an awesome community event filled with fantastic food, great music, and lots and lots of cars. It’s one of the great things about living in a smaller community, where an event like the Orangeville Rotary Club’s Ribfest feels more like a neighbourhood barbecue than a festival of strangers.
This year saw over 150 volunteers responsible for keeping the 7th Annual Orangeville Rotary Ribfest running smoothly by filling roles such as greeters for guests, cleaning tables, serving beer, and helping manage waste and recycling stations, with the help of Dufferin Waste Services.
Continuing in true Orangeville Ribfest tradition, the event once again broke it’s attendance records, both on Saturday and Sunday individually, as well as over the weekend as a whole. According to the Rotary Club, more than 20,000 people passed through the gates at Ribfest this weekend.
This year, a new champion took the title of Best Ribs, and a newcomer took the best sauce votes during the celebrity judging.
Billy Bones BBQ took home the prize for Judges’ Choice Best Ribs this year, while newcomers Hawgs Gone Wild earned the title of Judges’ Choice Sauce. It seems the people were in agreement with the judges this year, as Billy Bones BBQ also took home the trophy for People’s Choice Award.
Of course, one of the biggest highlights of the weekend was the Ribfest Classic Auto Show, held late Saturday afternoon. This year is the second year that David Murphy, Business Relations Manager at MacMaster Buick GMC, ran the show, and it was yet another great success.
“The weather was good and the ribs were amazing,” said David. “It was a good night, and this year there were a lot of Community Choice award votes. There were over 200 votes, which means we had at least that many people come over from the ribs and beer tent to look at cars.”
Along with the Community Choice award, each of the Ribbers had the opportunity to scout out the vehicles present and pick their favourites to win an award. And this year, there were far more cars to pick from, as the space behind Ribfest filled in quickly with cars of all makes, models, and years.
“There were 97 cars in total that showed up, and almost 80 had pre-registered,” said David. “We had everything from a 1957 Buick Cabellero to the 33 Willy’s, which is a local favourite. We also had some Concourse-ready muscle cars.”
He added that a lot of people also came to the show from outside the area, including some cars from Guelph.
“Everybody had a lot of fun,” said David. “I lost track of how many people asked me if my ribs were going to be a door-prize.”
While there were a number of fantastic vehicles out at the event, there were a few that definitely stood out the most. The most unique vehicle at the show was a 1928 Ford Model-T pick-up, originally produced in Canada, in its original condition. It sat in a barn for 50 years, and was driven to the show all the way from Alliston.
David’s favourite vehicle was the 1957 Buick Cabellero, which is no surprise given his affinity for Buicks.
“That car is absolutely gorgeous,” he said. “Everything is just perfect about it.”
The absolute most expensive car to roll up to Ribfest this year was a 1970 Chevelle SS454 Convertible.
“It’s a very rare, and very expensive car,” said David. “Because it was a convertible, it’s definitely worth even more.”
He added that there were a few other cars there worth over $100,000.
“This was probably one of the most consistent shows we have done, as far as variety and quality go,” said David.
The winners of this year’s Ribbers and Community Choice awards are:
Peter Morneau – 1978 Camero – Crazy Canucks
Larry Gilkinson – 1979 TransAm – Gator BBQ
Jim Ferris – 1970 Chevelle – Billy Bones
Ron Passer – 1957 Buick Cabellero – Brickyard BBQ
Sam & Joanne Gogas – 1968 Oldsmobile – Boss Hogs
Aaron – 1933 Willy’s – Hawgs Gone Wild
Bonnie McClellan – 1956 GMC – Community Choice
The 8th Annual Orangeville Rotary Ribfest will take place July 14, 15, and 16, 2017.
Written by Tabitha Wellls