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Photo by Laura Lennie

Photo by Laura Lennie

Irene Koudys from Fifty United Church peels peaches and prepares filling for more than 1,500 peach pies for the peach festival, in this 2013 file photo.

Winona Peach Festival is Aug. 22-24

Enjoy thrilling rides, exciting entertainment, great food, exhibits and arts and crafts vendors at this year’s Winona Peach Festival, Aug. 22-24 at Winona Park.

The party begins Friday evening at 7 p.m. with the Third Annual Talent Showcase featuring Abby Rose Kompare and Rutherford and Robichaud. Then at 8 p.m., enjoy an exciting night of the blues with The Blues Family Show Band.

Family entertainment takes centre stage on Saturday at the E.D. Smith Fun Factory. Enjoy Jam Sandwich, the Rawcette Dancers, Jon and those Puppets, plus dinner time music with Barley Brea and The Aquamaniacs.

Saturday’s main stage entertainment begins at 7 p.m. with Woodburn and Celtic rockers The Mudmen.

Family entertainment continues on Sunday with the Conservatory of Musical Studies and Cindy Cook from Polka Dot Door.

Rock away the afternoon with Sam and the Wave and the Practically Hip. Watch the Grimsby Pipe Band march through the park and stay for the closing ceremonies to find out if you’ve won a raffle prize.

The arts and crafts section showcases the works of more than 125 artisans  from all over Ontario, including clothing, hobbies, housewares, jewelry and  leather goods.

Many companies come to the Winona Peach Festival every year  to show off their latest product ideas in the commercial area, which features displays, demonstrations, samples, games, activities and shopping. The Peach of a Car  Show line-up will feature vintage cars, hot rods and classics each day.

The midway has a multitude of  rides, including Spin Out, Ali  Baba and the Tea Cups.

The Winona Peach Festival consists of about 20 community churches,  sports and service organizations. A volunteer board of 10 together with 25  committee chairs work all year to organize the festival.

Each of the groups uses the festival as a major fundraiser for their respective organizations.

This revenue helps members donate to different charities and allows the churches to invest in more  community services. All member organizations are  registered charities or non-profit organizations.

This year’s Winona Peach Festival runs Friday, Aug. 22, 5 p.m. to 11 p.m,  Saturday,  Aug. 23, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday, Aug. 24, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Visitors are reminded that in accordance with City of Hamilton bylaws, pets are not permitted at the festival, with the exception of service animals. Smoking is also banned at all city parks.

Don’t forget to pick up your raffle tickets for a chance to win a new Jeep Cherokee.

Heading to the park

Getting to the Winona Peach Festival has never been easier thanks to convenient parking and shuttle services that take you right to the centre of the action.

Free HSR shuttle routes are running again this year from Eastgate Square, beginning on Friday, Aug. 22.

Ride the big yellow rocket straight to the festival gates at Winona Park, with departures every 12 minutes. Buses will be running on Friday from 5:24 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., Saturday from 10:24 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and Sunday from 10:24 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Riders are asked to bring non-perishable food donations for the Salvation Army food bank.

If you plan on driving to the festival, take advantage of off-site parking at Helderleigh Holdings, 938 Barton St. east of  Glover Road. Parking is free, with a $5 charge to ride the shuttle to the park. All proceeds benefit the Peach Festival’s local member organizations.

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