TORONTO – The Economic Developers Council of Ontario (EDCO) recognized excellence in economic development initiatives and leaders from Ontario communities earlier this month, and presented three awards to Norfolk County and its partners.

Best Public-Private Partnership

EDCO awarded Best Public-Private Partnership in the Collaboration & Partnership Awards category to Mumford & Sons, Live Nation, Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show, Norfolk County and the Downtown Simcoe BIA for the Gentlemen of the Road Simcoe Stopover on August 23/24, 2013. The music festival was the only Canadian stop on the award-winning band’s international tour. Tens of thousands of visitors came to Norfolk County in the days leading up to and after the event to explore the area. The event had an estimated economic impact of $10 million.

Mumford & Sons’ management company, contacted in London, England, commented that the accolade is appreciated.

“The Live Nation team is very proud to receive this award with our partners from the Simcoe BIA, Norfolk County and Mumford & Sons. Together we created an event that really celebrated the music, fans and the community,” said Riley O’Connor, Chairman, Live Nation Canada.

“I am so very proud to be the Mayor of a municipality of dynamic, hard-working people who share the vision and objective of making Norfolk a shining example of working together for the greater good,” said Dennis Travale, Mayor of Norfolk County.

EDCO Award photo with Norfolk County reps
EDCO award to Mumford & Sons, Norfolk County Fair, Live Nation, Downtown Simcoe BIA and Norfolk County for Gentlemen of the Road Simcoe Stopover

“We are honoured to be recognized for these accomplishments, but they would not have been possible without the team spirit among the hundreds of private-sector partners we work with every day,” said Clark Hoskin, Manager of Tourism & Economic Development for Norfolk County.

“Winning this award with our partners from the Simcoe BIA, Norfolk County, Mumford and Sons and Live Nation is a positive reaffirmation of everything we do here at the Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show,” said George Araujo, General Manager of the Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show.  “Every event we host is a collaboration between amazing people and organizations.  The support, dedication, and effort put forth by the organizers, and the people of Norfolk for the Gentlemen of the Road Simcoe Stopover, was outstanding. Together, we created a template of co-operation that will serve our community well into the future, and the Norfolk County Fair and Horse Show will continue to be a progressive partner in that future.”

“What a great opportunity for the Downtown Simcoe BIA to partner with the Norfolk County Fair and Horse Show, Norfolk County, Mumford and Sons, and Live Nation,” said Larry Dawson, Executive Director of the Downtown Simcoe BIA. “The community came together as one and embraced  the opportunity to showcase what we have to offer here in Norfolk.   By partnering with one another we learnt to use the strengths of those around the table to meet any challenge which lead to a wonderfully  successful event.  Thanks to everyone for moving ahead and thinking outside the box.”

Advertising Award

Another award went to Norfolk County’s Tourism & Economic Development Division and The Simcoe Reformer in the Promotional Awards / Advertising category for the Footsteps of Rock Legends marketing campaign. The tourism office used social media, online mapping and prize draws, in cooperation with tourism marketing partners and The Simcoe Reformer to encourage visitors to explore Norfolk County’s musical heritage and to pay tribute to Rick Danko of The Band.

“The Simcoe Reformer was pleased to be part of the Footsteps of Rock Legends contest and congratulates Norfolk County Tourism for offering unique opportunities to explore all Norfolk County has to offer,” said Sue Downs, Advertising Manager for The Simcoe Reformer.

Technology and New Media Award 

Norfolk County’s Tourism & Economic Development Division also earned Best Technology and New Media for the Norfolk County Video Library available at The video clips are available to be used by any Norfolk County tourism attraction to help promote the area to visitors. The videos were shot by Rainey Media of Waterford. CBC’s Nature of Things was the first outside video producer to take advantage of the library.

“Participating in EDCO’s Awards Program holds communities to a higher standard throughout the year,” said Jennifer Patterson, EDCO 2013 President. “Allowing communities to learn about winning projects and the ability to compare efforts maintains the need for excellence across the province and throughout all economic development initiatives.  Helping communities raise their profile, and investment and tourism opportunities is a big part of what EDCO does.”

A complete list of 2014 award recipients can be found on the EDCO website at


Media Contacts

Clark Hoskin, Manager, Tourism & Economic Development, Norfolk County, (519) 426-5870 ext 1238

Dennis Travale, Manager, Norfolk County, (519) 426 – 5870 ext 1220

George Araujo, General Manager, Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show, (519) 426-7280 ext 225

Larry Dawson, Executive Director, Downtown Simcoe BIA, (519) 426-5150

Sue Downs, Advertising Manager, Simcoe Reformer, (519) 426-3528 ext 118

Background Info:

Gentlemen of the Road website:

Footsteps of Mumford & Sons / Footsteps of Rock Legends:

Norfolk County Video Library:


Link to larger award photo: Photo 

Caption: EDCO award to Mumford & Sons, Norfolk County Fair, Live Nation, Downtown Simcoe BIA and Norfolk County for Gentlemen of the Road Simcoe Stopover. Front (left to right): Clark Hoskin, Norfolk County; Karen Matthews, Norfolk County Fair & Horse Show; Jennifer Patterson, Economic Developers’ Council of Ontario (EDCO); Tracy Haskett, Norfolk County. Back row: Linda D’Hondt-Crandon, Shelley Darlington, Lorraine DeSerrano and Ted Willey, all of Norfolk County,