Upper Canada Village’s new fall event Pumpkinferno has proven its status as the largest, boldest and definitely most unique event in Eastern Ontario. Just ask the 35,000 visitors, who passed through the gates.
With performance exceeding even the St. Lawrence Parks Commission’s expectations (approximately 20,000 forecasted), Pumpkinferno will return in 2013 with even more improvements and visual features.
To say investing in the event required a leap of faith by the SLPC’s leadership would be an understatement. The concept was actually a few years in development.
And as the vision and concept was fine-tuned, so to was a business plan and market analysis.
Investment in the range of $600,000 over three years has been allocated for the event.
The Product and Development Team presented a plan to purchase thousands of artificial pumpkins and carving equipment, hire a team of talented local artists and carvers and a supervisor to bring the concept of Pumpkinferno to life.
“It definitely was a calculated risk on our part to support the development of this new event,” said general manager and CEO Darren Dalgleish. “But as leaders in event development, the event business plan really fit with our strategic objectives of product mix enrichment.”
The SLPC has led the way in the region with the introduction of special events both during the regular season at Upper Canada Village, Fort Henry and their other recreational properties as well as during what is traditionally the ‘off-season’.”
“Our experience with Upper Canada Village’s Alight at Night and Fort Henry’s Fort Fright events proved to us that there is interest amongst consumers to visit our sites for a non-traditional product offering,” says Dagleish. “In fact, we find that our audiences for the off season are quite different than for the regular core season. Often visitors have never been to the sites during the main season, so these events offer us a unique opportunity to broaden our appeal and to connect with market segments we previously may have overlooked to be our guests.”
“We attracted guests from Montreal, Ottawa, Kingston, Belleville, Northern New York State and some even from Toronto!”
Dalgleish went on to say: “Development of these very successful off season events is critical to our overall business objective to improve our net performance and by doing so, strengthen our sustainability and tourism brands throughout the Great Waterway Region.”
Next up for Upper Canada Village is the winter lights festival Alight at Night which opens its twelfth year on Friday, November 30 at 5 p.m. and operates on select nights through until Saturday, January 5, 2013.
Admission to Alight at Night is $13 adults (13 to 64 years of age) and $10 for seniors (65+ years of age) and youth (six to 12 years of age.).
Entry, wagon ride and train ride are all included in the admission price. Parking is free. Advance tickets are recommended and can be purchased online at www.AlightatNight.ca