Renfrew Pulls Bid For 2021 International Plowing Match

IPMstox

A bid to host the 2021 International Plowing Match in the Renfrew area has been pulled.

Renfrew Reeve Peter Emon says they've decided they need more time to find suitable land to host the major agricultural event, because the site they were working on near the Ma-Te-Way Activity Centre won't be adequate.  

"Sometimes, when you use older farmland that's not being used for crops, hay or livestock, some drainage issues can surface", Emon explained.

"With older infrastructure in the ground - sometimes it's clay tile as opposed to something newer - there were some significant failures in the drainage which would have taken a lot of time to repair.  Ideally, you should have a couple of seasons after you've repaired it to make sure", he added.

"If we have rain, and we're hosting it there with inadequate drainage, everybody would be axle-deep, and we just felt we couldn't meet the deadlines because of that", Emon said.

Still, Emon says there's been a lot of work involved in the bid so they're going to try again in 2025.

"We'll definitely try again. The County has approved the terms of reference with the idea of going forward, establishing criteria and selecting a site", Reeve Emon said.

"We were very impressed and gratified by the support from all across the County, with people interested, wanting to serve on a committee, or be a volunteer for a day.  So the capacity to host this event is there, the will is there as well, it's just a matter of finding the right spot, finding the finances, and having all of those things come together at the right time", Emon said. 

The IPM generates tens of thousands of visitors and millions of dollars in economic spinoff for its host communities.

The last time the match was held in the area was in September of 1994 when it was held just outside of Pembroke.