The sixth annual Hastings County Tourism Awards have been handed out to businesses, organizations, and individuals contributing to the local tourism industry.

The award celebration was held tonight in Bancroft’s Village Playhouse. Hastings County Marketing Coordinator Luisa Sorrentino says this was a record year for nominations, with around 125 of them rolling in.

The first award of the night was for the Festival of the Year. It recognizes an event that’s primary audience is from outside Hastings County, and has enhanced to become more successful over the years.

That award was given to the organizers of the Farm to Table – Canada 150 event in Tweed. The municipality’s Mayor Jo-Anne Albert, Manager of Community Development Rachelle Hardesty, and Assistant of Community Development Lori Crellin accepted the award. Hardesty says it’s great that events like this are recognized, especially in honour of Canada’s 150th anniversary.

Farm to Table brought more than 1,100 people to the region this year.

From left to right: Hastings County Marketing Coordinator Luisa Sorrentino, Tweed Manager of Community Development Rachelle Hardesty, Tweed Assistant of Community Development Lori Crellin, Tweed Mayor Jo-Anne Albert, and Hastings County Warden Rodney Cooney. Credit: Andreas Pandikiu – Moose FM.

Hastings County also handed out the award for Champion of the Year. It recognizes a business or organization that’s products or services support tourism.

The winner of this award was Tweed & Company Theatre. Artistic Director Tim Porter, General Manager Emily Mewett, and Artistic Producer Tricia Black accepted the award. Porter says it feels incredible to win the award.

From left to right: Hastings County Marketing Coordinator Luisa Sorrentino, Tweed & Company Artistic Director Tim Porter, Artistic Producer Tricia Black, General Manager Emily Mewett, and Hastings County Warden Rodney Cooney. Credit: Andreas Pandikiu – Moose FM.

Finally, the award for MVP of the Year was handed out, which recognizes a volunteer who demonstrates significant dedication to their organization, and goes above and beyond in their role.

This award was given to Nancy Hopkins, Editor and Publisher of Country Roads Magazine. The award was accepted on her behalf by her husband, John, who says it’s very special to be recognized in this way.

The magazine has a readership of over 270,000 people.

From left to right: Hastings County Marketing Coordinator Luisa Sorrentino, Nancy Hopkin’s husband John,, and Hastings County Warden Rodney Cooney. Credit: Andreas Pandikiu – Moose FM.