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Ottawa Wine and Food Festival 2018 has been Cancelled



Ottawa Wine and Food Festival, scheduled to hold this year on Nov. 2 to 4, has been cancelled. This year’s event was to be held at the EY Centre on Uplands Drive close to the Ottawa International Airport and would have marked the 33 years’ anniversary for the festival which entertains Ottawa’s food and beverage fans every year, says a report on Ottawa Citizen

Posts on the festival’s Facebook page revealthat over 7,300 people were interested in attending.

All were seemingly disappointed by the group’s latest post, which read “Thanks to Everyone for your interest in the 2018 Festival. We are taking a pause on this year's event and we will be back November 1st & 2nd 2019 with a re-imagined Event. Watch for Upcoming News!”

Prior to this post, there have been posts on the page by frustrated people who wanted to be a part of the festival but couldn’t get tickets online. Apparently, interested participants had already begun preparing for the festival after they announced on their page in September that the festival was going to hold this year. The announcement had read, “Sadly our #summer is coming to an end ... but you know what that means? The Ottawa Wine and Food Festival is coming, join us this November 2 - 4 at the EY Centre for your 33rd annual #Ottawawinefood! Subscribe to our website to stay in the loop on all our exciting updates, and to watch for tickets to go on sale! See you there!”

A Cantley, Que., resident, Jasmine Hubble, a fan of the festival who was interviewed by Ottawa Citizen, said she has booked a non-refundable hotel room after she had contacted the festival’s director of sales Elizabeth McMenemy, in early October about attending this year. Mcmenemy had confirmed to her that the tickets to the festival would be available soon.

“I’m shocked at the lack of the communication from an event that has had (up until now) an excellent reputation. I’m disappointed beyond belief and our hard-earned money that I had saved up to be able to attend,” she said.

The event producer, Joan Culliton says she feels sorry about disappointing the fans. She blames the cancellation on the sudden critical illness of a family member. However, it can be recalled that the festival has been in the news since 2016 over their legal battle with the Ottawa Congress Centre Corp. The festival was over $200, 000 in debt to the corporation anda Sept. 7, 2018 judgment by Ontario Superior Court Justice Robyn M. Ryan Bell established that the OCCC was entitled to be paid in full.

Culliton, however, does not acknowledge this as a reason for the cancellation of the festival.

“We’re taking a pause to reimagine and re-envision the event,” she had said Thursday in an interview. “We will be back in 2019 on Nov. 2 and 3.” This contradicts the dates announced on their Facebook page. Hopefully, the festival would use this year to sort out their logistics.