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Gastronomic delights await participants on new local food tour

Midland woman creates walking and driving food tours for both tourists and residents alike
2021-07-02 midland-food-tours (1)
Kelly Kurtz hopes to start a walking food tour of downtown Midland in September.

Kelly Kurtz wants to bring the region’s great food and wonderful scenery to both tourists and local residents alike.

The Midland woman has founded a new tourism venture called Midland Food Tours. The startup company has partnered with local restaurants and food producers to showcase the rich local food bounty while enjoying a scenic drive through the countryside.

Kurtz said she was inspired to create the venture based on how much she’s enjoyed similar tours in places she’s visited over the years.

“The idea is certainly not unique,” said Kurtz, a retired teacher who has also worked in both the tourism and food service industries.

“I did the first one (tour) in 2018 in Kingston, and that planted the seed.”

Kurtz began researching her plan last fall and took a few business webinars before creating a business plan.

A self-described “foodie,” Kurtz plans to start offering her walking food tours in September, which will include a guided walk through downtown Midland with stops for tastings at selected restaurants and the opportunity to learn about the town's rich history and culture.

"My original plan was the downtown walking food tour,” she said, adding COVID-19 restrictions put a wrench into that idea. “I partnered with six restaurants for the walking tour.”

But for the time being, her one-woman operation is offering self-guided driving food tours through scenic Tay, Tiny, Midland and Penetanguishene, stopping at pre-selected eateries and food producers to sample the establishment's best offerings.

“I have added other points of interest they can see and then I've included bits of background information and information about the restaurant,” Kurtz said.

“It is a food tour, but it's a really unique experience as well. It has the feeling of a day trip, a day out and just going for a beautiful drive and then you end up in the nice small towns.

“You get to experience North Simcoe County and have great food waiting for you. And you learn about the history and culture of the place as well.”

Costing $107, the all-inclusive driving tour allows participants to safely experience the countryside, visit small restaurants for take-out samples, connect with local food producers, and learn about the restaurateurs, local history and culture through short videos played on their phones.

Two of the participating establishments are Captain Roberts’ Table at Penetanguishene’s Discovery Harbour and Farm2Door in Perkinsfield.

“And that view is amazing as well,” Kurtz said, referring to Captain Roberts’ Table, which sits a stone's throw from Penetanguishene Bay. “And Jeff and Sarah White who have that place and also have Georgian Bakery are just such hospitable people."

Kurtz's goal is to draw visitors to our area, and support the hardworking restaurateurs and food  producers who make North Simcoe County a flavour-filled destination.

More information can be found on her website, or on Instagram and Facebook @midlandfoodtours.

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Andrew Philips

About the Author: Andrew Philips

Editor Andrew Philips is a multiple award-winning journalist whose writing has appeared in some of the country’s most respected news outlets. Originally from Midland, Philips returned to the area from Québec City a decade ago.
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