When our team at CSCMOW first got rolling with organizing Tacofest we had no idea we would receive so much support from our community here in Waterloo Region. It is with unending thanks that I get to announce today that the first ever Tacofest has raised $17,000 for Community Support Connections – Meals on Wheels and More.

We have so many people to thank. Our Presenting Sponsor, MTE has been a long-time supporter of our organization through our Meals on Wheels Adopt-a-Route Program. We look forward to our continued partnership with MTE as we work together to help seniors and adults with disabilities in our community. We also think you guys looked awesome in those big-ass sombreros.

To our Green Sponsor, Imbibe Food’n Drink: we couldn’t have done this without you. If you haven’t met Bill the owner and operator of this amazing restaurant and craft brew pub, please drop in and say hello. Bill was our event’s Green Sponsor, a taco vendor, and our connection to the world of craft beer. He’s an awesome guy who runs a great business, and we hope you will say thank you by dropping in for a pint.

Thank you also to our Silver Sponsor Eyelight Creative Marketing Services and Bronze Sponsor Desire2Learn. It was great seeing so many of your staff attend the event and lend their support. We hope they enjoyed the party! We had a wide variety of in-kind sponsors as well who lent their services to us for the night, including: Bre Creative, Sylvia Pond Photography, Bingeman’s as our ice sponsor, My IT Guy and The Donkey Sanctuary of Canada.

Next up is our vendors. Now would be a great time to remind everyone that 100% of the product, both tacos and beer, was donated by our vendors to the event. Isn’t that amazing? We hope you were able to chat with them about their tacos and beer, and the next time you are thinking of going out for something to eat or drink, you will consider them first.

Thank you taco vendors: The Bauer Kitchen, Beertown Public House, Bingemans, The Bruce, Crabby Joe’s Downtown Kitchener, Imbibe Food’n Drink, The Lion Brewery Restaurant, Little Mushroom Catering, Public Kitchen & Bar and Taco Farm

Thank you beer vendors: Flying Monkeys Craft Brewery, Great Lakes Brewery, Highlander Brew Co., Kensington Brewing Company, Mill St. Brewery, Nickel Brook Brewing, Railway City Brewing Company, Silversmith Brewing Company, Steam Whistle Brewing and Wellington Brewery

Congratulations to the winner of the Golden Taco Award, Taco Farm and runners up with a Very Tasty Taco award Public Kitchen & Bar and The Bauer Kitchen.  Our People’s Taco Award, where visitors voted for their favourite taco, went to Little Mushroom Catering. As an organizer, I was constantly asking people at the event who made their favourite. I can say with certainty that I heard from different patrons that each and every vendor at Tacofest was the best. Everyone did an amazing job and we sincerely appreciate the effort everyone put forward.

We also had a huge number of requests from community members to volunteer at Tacofest. We needed your help, and boy did you all work hard. From serving VIP’s to emptying garbage, our volunteers were amazing. Volunteers are the backbone of events like Tacofest, so on behalf of fundraisers and event planners everywhere, thank you for making all this possible by donating your time.

Finally, thank you Waterloo Region. Thank you for buying tickets, sharing, tweeting, liking, telling your friends and lending a hand. CSCMOW is lucky to exist in such a vibrant and caring community. A community that helps others in need. A community that loves tacos and beer.

If you have any feedback about the event, we would love to hear it. Please feel free to contact me at matthewt@communitysupportconnections.org or by phone at 519-772-8787 x224.

Cheers Waterloo Region!

Matthew Trushinski