Last weekend Francine and Alexander and I headed out of town for a few days -- we went up north to give my Mom a hand with some yard work that desperately needed doing.
But we just couldn't leave town without first making a visit to the first annual Hamilton Wingfest!
Given our love for chicken wings and the fact that Hamilton was one of the first Canadian cities to embrace the food (something having to do with our proximity to Buffalo, commonly associated with being the birthplace of chicken wings or Buffalo Wings) we just couldn't miss this historic event.
I mean, Burlington has its annual awesome Rib Fest, so why shouldn't Hamilton have a Wingfest? (I still have to go to Toronto for the Beer Fest to properly round out the fests, but we'll get one here soon enough - I have faith)
We headed down on the Friday night, which was rather chilly for late May and the sky was threatening rain. By the time we parked and walked in to Pier 8, the rain had started spitting down on us, but by the time we got to the kid's midway and bought our tickets, the rain stopped again. Alexander enjoyed a bunch of fun rides there -- he even won the prize of his choice at the kiddie duck pond, a giant blow-up dolphin.
The last ride enjoyed was the ferris wheel which I joined him on -- we had an awesome view of the grounds of Wingfest as well as the harbour. My favourite part of the ride was when on the quick descent of the ferris wheel Alexander started giggling and said: "That tickles" -- referring, I assumed, to that tickling feeling you get in your testicles when descending quickly.
We moved from there to the main grounds of the Wingfest, and, while we only had time to wait in one of the lineups (it was getting extremely cold, rather late and past Alexander's bed time), we quite enjoyed the experience. We polished off some french fries while listening to the Practically Hip -- a fantastic Tragically Hip cover band. Having seen the Hip in concert, I was amazed with this group and enjoyed their performance as much as the original band's. Actually, I enjoyed their performance MORE than the Hip -- and not just because frontman Dean (aka "Gordie") didn't almost kill me like Gord Downie did. (For a detailed explanation, read this blog post from 2006 that explains the details of an encounter many years ago with the original Gordie)
The music was great, the wings fantastic and Francine and I bemoaned the fact that we weren't going to be able to check out the rest of the fest over the weekend. We had originally planned on attending Wingfest on the Saturday night and enjoying seeing David Wilcox perform -- I've seen him dozens of times over the years and always enjoy his live shows.
But we did have a great time -- and made it out of there just before the rain really started coming down. We're certainly looking forward to next year's.
So, to sum up, this week I'm counting the fact that Hamilton, already rich with fun and wonderful things to do every single weekend has now added Wingfest to the repertoire. Needless to say: "WOO HOO!" and to the folks who organized it: "THANKS!" and "CAN'T WAIT UNTIL NEXT YEAR!"