Ribfest returns with modified event

July 15, 2021
Cornwall Ribfest
Cornwall Ribfest

One of Cornwall’s most cherished summer events is returning in a modified format.

Cornwall Ribfest returns on Thursday, July 22nd to Sunday, July 25th with its familiar mix of music, entertainment and, of course, ribs! But things will look a little different as extra safety measures are put in place to comply with Covid-19 protocols.

“It’s been a tough year. Everybody needs this,” said Terry Muir, President of the Optimist Club of Cornwall which organizes the festival. “We want to give the people a good party while still being safe. Masks will be mandatory and people will have to reserve their spots as space will be limited. It will look different this year but it will be equally awesome.”

How it works

Here are some key points on how attendance at Ribfest will work this year:

– You must have a pre-ordered reservation in order to access the entertainment/beer garden area as well as the midway. They are two separate areas and you must purchase a spot for both if you wish to attend both areas. The entertainment/beer garden area has been divided up into seven 3.5-hour blocks of time spread out over the three days. For contact tracing purposes, you must know the names of all attendees in your spot upon registration. Spots come in groups of 2, 4 or 6 and they cost $5 per person. You must reserve your spot online in advance at the Cornwall Ribfest website.

– The midway will be enclosed in its own dedicated area with a limited number allowed in at once. There will be seven five-hour slots throughout the festival and tickets will be $25 for each five-hour time slot (includes unlimited rides). Due to capacity restrictions, it will be first come, first serve until capacity is reached. There is no pre-order. After each time slot, the midway will close and be sanitized for the next window of time.

The midway timeslots are as follows:
Thursday from 11:30 am – 4:30 pm
Thursday from 5:30 pm – 10:30 pm
Friday from 11:30 am – 4:30 pm
Friday from 5:30 pm – 10:30 pm
Saturday from 11:30 am – 4:30 pm
Saturday from 5:30 pm – 10:30 pm
Sunday from 11:30 am – 4:30 pm

– You do not need a reservation to access food. You just walk in, line up and purchase your food.

– The entertainment begins at 3 pm on Friday and continues at 11 am on both Saturday and Sunday. Switchgear, Mena Hardy, The Shiners, The Capital Beatles and The County Lads are among this year’s performers. The full entertainment schedule can be found on the Cornwall Ribfest website.

– All health protocols will be followed including distancing when lining up and masking.

Enjoy more ribs with the Community Cookout!

Love ribs? Get started early with the Ribfest Community Cookout! Visit a participating restaurant from July 16th to July 22nd and try their amazing rib-inspired creations for a chance to win $1,000! Participating restaurants include Schnitzels European Flavours, King George Restaurant, Hops and Barley, Boston Pizza, Esca Gourmet Pizza, Edward’s Bistr and Simply Jennifer.

Stay up to date

Make sure you have the latest information on Ribfest by checking out the Cornwall Ribfest website or their Facebook page in advance of your visit.

Don’t forget to visit us!

While you’re in the park, don’t forget to stop by the Cornwall Tourism pop-up visitor information centre at the eastern edge of the park near the entrance to the Cornwall Civic Complex! We’re open seven days a week from 9 am to 5 pm and if the weather is bad, you can find us right inside the front entrance of the Civic Complex. Stop by and pick up a Visitor Guide or get some recommendations on other fun things to see and do during your visit to Cornwall!

You can also text us anytime at 613-938-4748 and we will be happy to assist with any questions you might have.

Play it safe!

We all have a part to play in combating the spread of COVID-19. Residents are encouraged to wear masks, practice frequent hand washing and physical distancing, and stay home if not feeling well. For the latest guidelines and restrictions related to COVID-19, please visit the Eastern Ontario Health Unit website.


Looking for other fun things to do in Cornwall? Check out the Explore section of our website for other fun-filled activities to keep you busy. Better yet, consider extending your stay with a night at one of our great accommodations!

Got a question?

Got questions? Need recommendations? We’re here to help! Call or text us at 613-938-4748 or email us at info@cornwalltourism.com and we’ll be pleased to help you with any questions you may have!

Also make sure to check us out on Facebook and Instagram for updates and more great reasons to visit Cornwall!