Meet Our Local SLIDERFEST 2019 Chef Competitors!

Five local slider masters from Butcher & Banker, Country Corner Market, Cracker Jack’s (43 North Group), The Righteous Monger (at Kame & Kettle Beer Works) and Toffolo Catering (Meridian Community Centre caterer) will be showing off their best sliders as the Fonthill Lions once again host their highly popular culinary competition at G. L. Klager Park on Saturday August 24th.

Now in its 3rd year SLIDERFEST, presented by PenFinancial Credit Union, is the Fonthill Lions Club’s largest fundraiser.  The Fonthill Lions are celebrating 75 years of community service.

Chef J. Mark Hand, aka The Righteous Monger, is the one returning Chef to this year's SLIDERFEST. As a  Certified Chef de Cuisine - Canada’s highest accreditation for Chefs, Mark is sure to be a top contender for the BEST SLIDER Title!  His incredible culinary CV includes working as the Executive Chef for ten years at the Niagara Culinary Institute and opening many renowned Niagara establishments including On the Twenty, AG and The Deck at Creekside by J Mark.

Chef Kenny Fraser, Butcher and Banker Pub Fonthill discovered his love for the culinary arts early in life when he started as a baker at Tim Hortons at the tender age of 14.  Just a few months later he joined the team at Emma’s Back Porch as a dishwasher and worked hard move up the “food chain”.  He honed his culinary skills at Niagara College.  Shortly thereafter he found himself running a major corporate cafeteria in Burlington, prior to his instrumental role in opening The Butcher and Banker Pub in Beamsville in 2009. Kenny created a crowd-pleasing menu that stood the test of time and resulted in the opening of the second Butcher and Banker Pub in Fonthill in 2018.

Chef Abbey Solomon, Corporate Chef, 43 North Group (Cracker Jacks Thorold): Chef Abbey was originally from Toronto but relocated to the Niagara region in 2008 and immediately fell in love with the area. His great motivation, talent and creativity won Abbey many culinary honours, including 2011 Readers Choice Best Chef and Restaurant for West Lincoln, 2013 Iron Chef Champion, 2014 Iron Chef runner up, 2015 Norcliff Farms Fiddlehead Final Three and Food Network Canada’s Chopped Canada runner up. Abbey was Executive Chef for Lookout Point Country Club prior to his current position as Corporate Chef at 43 North Restaurant Group representing Johnny Rocco’s, Mick and Angelo’s, and newest concept, Doughbox Wood Fired Pizza and Pasta in Hamilton.

Sausage Master Dalton Lowes, Country Corner Market refined his skills working with his father, Rick Lowes. Over the years the father/son team have perfected their skills creating some of the best tasting recipes a sausage lover could imagine.  Never one for shortcuts, the quality and flavours of their sausages grew over the years to 40 plus varieties.  Country Corner Market just celebrated its 25-year anniversary, having grown from a simple deli store to a Specialty Food Store.  Can you guess what Dalton’s slider recipe might be?

Tim Toffolo, Toffolo Catering is a multi-tasker master at heart.  He is a realtor and leader of the Pelham Panthers, but his keen interest in cooking and love of great food led him to add catering to his portfolio of talents.  He has been in the catering business for over 10 years, however he blossomed as a self-made chef when he took over catering at the Meridian Community Centre about two years ago.  Tim’s unique interpretation of foods will add new interest to the SLIDERFEST competition this year.

Everyone who attends SLIDERFEST can try each of five specialty sliders and cast their vote for their favourite. The $35 ticket price also includes a serving of Fonthill Lions renown fresh cut French fries, local fresh corn on the cob and a non-alcohol drink. Children under 12 don't need a ticket to enter or to be served fries and corn. Kids menu hot dogs will be available for purchase.

There’s plenty of things for kids to do.  Cabar-eh Youth Theatre hosts a family fun zone filled with fun retro-style activities and loads of prizes.

Local blues band The Rhythm Hounds will be back by popular demand playing live in the park starting at 5:30pm and rocking the night away.

Enviro-Niagara Hearth and Barbeque returns as the SLIDERFEST Grand Prize Raffle Sponsor generously donating a Traeger Pro 20 Wood Pellet BBQ Grill. Tickets for the Grand Prize Raffle are available leading up to the event for $5 each (or 3 for $10 and 10 for $20) at Fonthill Lions Supper Market trailer or any member of the Fonthill Lions. Tickets are also sold at Enviro-Niagara on Highway 20 and at the event on August 24.

There are also penny raffle and 50/50 draws, plus a Silent Auction filled with exciting bidding opportunities such as a wine fridge filled with “Niagara’s Finest”, a helicopter trip over the Falls, “Wine & Dine” limo rental for the day, just to mention a few.

The top slider will be announced 8:30 pm at SLIDERFEST. The winning Slider Master will be awarded with the coveted Top Slider Trophy and bragging rights for the next twelve months.

There are only 500 SLIDERFEST tickets available on a pre-sale basis. Event organizers recommend not to leave it to the last minute and try to buy tickets at the door. SLIDERFEST tickets are available from any Fonthill Lions Member, every Thursday at the Fonthill Lions Pelham Supper Market trailer or online at www.sliderfest.ca