submitted by Deanna Clark

A new “Fresh Baked Adventures” culinary tour featuring 12 area bakeries and 7 cafés is off to a very sweet start. The self-driving Adventures initiative was launched today at the Kemptville Public Library by the United Counties of Leeds and Grenville Economic Development Office.

Area bakers, chefs and business owners made it enticing with a selection of signature baked goods and breads for everyone in attendance to sample. “This region has always been known for our breathtaking landscapes, rich history and warm welcome,” Leeds Grenville Warden Nancy Peckford said in welcoming the group to the North Grenville community where she is Mayor.

“With the introduction of signature culinary tourism experiences such as Fresh Baked Adventures, we are adding a new dimension to our tourism offerings, highlighting the tasty treasures that lie within our communities,” Warden Peckford said. On behalf of Counties Council, Warden Peckford also expressed gratitude to the 19 participating businesses for their commitment to making the region “a more delicious place for local citizens and visitors.”

A Counties webpage lists all participants with a map of their locations. See the full itinerary here and visit “. We are so excited to launch a brand new tourism experience that will draw people in and help them explore all corners of the Counties,” said Shelbi McFarlane, Business Development Officer with Leeds Grenville.

“By focusing on our bakeries and cafés, we are celebrating an age-old tradition that brings people together, fosters community pride, and reflects the diverse culinary heritage of our region,” Ms. McFarlane said. Each bakery in the Adventures tour offers its own unique flavours and stories, providing a truly authentic experience for our visitors. “What interested us in becoming involved in this program is we love to experience what other bakers are doing and network and grow as a community,” said Daphne Sword, co-owner of Tasty Goodness Bake Shop in Westport.

“We believe as a small business this really is an amazing way to improve tourism and promote the region,” Ms. Sword said. “It will not only create a greater awareness to our small little community, it will also drive increased visitors and highlight Westport as a wonderful spot to shop.”

Culinary tourism is a rapidly growing sector within the broader tourism industry. It offers a unique way for visitors to immerse themselves in the local culture, connect with the community, and create memorable experiences.

The Counties Economic Development Office completed a regional tourism destination strategy last year. It recognized the importance of the region working collaboratively toward the common goal of increasing visitation to Leeds Grenville. As part of the implementation, the United Counties have formally adopted the 1000 Islands Rideau Canal Waterways brand and are evolving existing tourism products and experiences while developing new ones, including Fresh Baked Adventures.

The Fresh Baked Adventures announcement is the second of three, with the first being the Garden Adventures announced last week. The new Foodie Shop Adventures initiative will be launched on July 6th.


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