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Sep. 21, 2019 | Saturday
Local News
Shades of Summer dinner wraps up peach celebrations

When U.S. visitors Eric and Tina Harper witnessed the Shades of Summer dinner in Niagara-on-the-Lake last year, they knew it was something they wanted to be a part of.

So, this past weekend, the New Jersey residents returned, donned their white attire, and dined al fresco in the middle of Queen Street on Sunday evening.

The first time the Harpers visited NOTL was for the Shaw Festival, and they’ve been coming back for 12 years.

“We’re well-travelled and we still come back here,” said Tina, adding they loved the event.

Hosted by the NOTL Chamber of Commerce, the annual dinner concluded a two-day peach celebration. The event runs in conjunction with the chamber’s annual Peach Festival, held on Saturday.

Part of Queen Street was closed to vehicles as the chamber set up tables near the cenotaph. Participants had to bring their own tablecloths, cutlery, dishes and food. The Thomas Nelson band provided live music.

Lyuda Tsonev was at the event for the first time as well. She came from Toronto with her husband Georgi Tsonev and two children, Vira and David.

“It’s amazing how open and warm people are here compared to Toronto,” she said.

Some other guests were veterans of the dinner.

Sharon Cooper was there for the fifth time. Being with good friends, planning and having a good time celebrating the peach festival is what brings her  back every year, she said.

For Nancy Hummel, who has been coming to the dinner since it started, it was a “beautiful event” to have in town and a “nice excuse” to get dressed up. She said by
bringing her children along, she hopes they will remember it as a family tradition and would bring their own children to it.

Dimitar Minkov, who owns the Historic Wilson-Guy House B&B with his wife Maria, said the Shades of Summer dinner was emblematic of the peach festival.

“More people have to know about this event,” he said.

“It’s the best event of the summer for Niagara-on-the-Lake,” added Maria. “It is very classy and a lot of fun.”

For former Niagara regional chair Alan Caslin, the evening was a chance to socialize and meet people.

“The food was fantastic and the weather was co-operative,” he told The Lake Report.

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