Filled with agricultural and culinary tapestries, it’s a local spot that has so many hidden gems. Here are six businesses that truly showcase how Wainfleet found harmony in harvest.
Kehoe & Kin: Century-old Barn Filled with Love
Filled with rustic charm, Kehoe & Kin is a family-owned event farm that specializes in barn weddings.
Katie Hinks and her mother Joanne Martin opened the space during the pandemic, but that wasn’t the beginning of the barn’s story. Hinks’ grandfather bought the property back in 1974 after falling in love with the structure. Hinks and Martin worked hard at keeping his legacy alive by restoring it.
Now, the renovated space, which is filled with both rustic character and modern touches, is constantly filled with couples celebrating their love for eachother.
The key to the business’s ongoing success is passion. “No one loves our barn and property more than my mom,” Hinks states.
“She’s passionate about preserving its authenticity and beauty, infusing it with quirky and delightful elements that never fail to surprise and delight our couples and their guests.”
“And together with my passion for crafting an exceptional client experience and a distinctive brand aesthetic, we’ve got a space and service that’s truly unique and inspiring.”
When it comes to culinary delights, Chef Eddy Arul knows what he’s doing. With over 40 years of restaurant experience, he opened Wainfleet Motel & Restaurant in 2005.
The space is comprised of a motel, a wedding venue and a restaurant and sees several international and local guests.
With always-changing daily specials, Arul says he has customers coming from across the region to sample the casual dining menu. In fact, some guests have been extremely loyal, constantly returning for 18 years.
Having a community that supports the restaurant, word of mouth is the most common way new customers find the hidden spot.
“Word of mouth, that is the main thing for me. People come in and always tell other people. I have clients from all over the neighbourhoods up to Hamilton and St. Catharines,” says Arul.
Heather Etling didn’t always know she wanted to be in the chocolate business. With a policing background, she eventually took over the shop in 2018 when the original line of owners were looking to retire.
Marshville Chocolates originally opened in the 1970s as a home-based hobby, before turning into the shop that is now known for its handmade sweets.
“It’s handmade, we make it piece by piece. You’re getting a fresh consistency, it’s not mass produced. So there is a special taste to it, and I think that’s why it tastes delicious,” Etling states.
While keeping many beloved recipes and customer favourites, Etling has continued to serve delicious chocolates to a group of loyal customers.
“The majority of our businesses is repeat customers. I think they just love coming in here.”
On top of that, Etling also conducted a recent expansion and opened a second location in Port Colborne.
What started as a hobby and a dream for Heather and Jay Kent, quickly became a successful reality with Feeder Flower Farm.
The couple didn’t come from a growing background but have since excelled at growing buds for their local community.
“I went to school for graphic design and marketing and advertising. Jay went to school as a carpenter. So we have different backgrounds,” says Heather Kent.
“We’ve always grown stuff, even when we lived downtown, our little 10 by 10 patio was just jammed with things. So we just kind of started to do what we like to do, and it took off.”
The 15-acre farm is now known for growing sustainable farmed seasonal annuals, perennials, foliage and willows.
One thing that sets them apart from other growers is their stunning dahlia field, which serves up colourful hues in the late summer and fall.
The Kents work hard at supplying flowers for weddings and events, with every bouquet and arrangement having its own personal touch.
For decades, Ron Pols and the team at Pols Enterprises Ltd. have been a leading provider of ventilation and equipment solutions for poultry and livestock barns across the province.
Pols doesn’t follow what other suppliers do. He works hard to bring new equipment to his company, travels trade shows to learn more, and even helps educate his customers.
However, it’s more than just selling equipment for Pols, it’s also about animal welfare and ensuring every barn they work with has the equipment needed to maintain this.
“Our main goal is animal comfort,” says Pols. “And no matter if it’s a pig, a chicken or a cow if you can make that animal comfortable, you actually have better production, better health, better everything.”
Wainfleet is filled with companies big and small that are working hard to bring more to the agricultural and culinary scene.
Whether they are growing flowers, making chocolate, or fixing local barns with the best ventilation equipment, all of these spots are working together in harmony.
If it wasn’t for Kehoe & Kin, Wainfleet Motel & Restaurant, Marshville Chocolates, Feeder Flower Farm, Pols Enterprises Ltd, and Rhora’s Nut Farm and Nursery, this small community wouldn’t be what it is today.
Did You Know?
Charles Rhora, who is a Wainfleet native, opened Rhora’s Nut Farm and Nursery back in 1967. He has been experimenting with growing seedlings for decades and has been able to show how beneficial they are up North.
Now, the company grows a variety of unique nuts, such as Heart Nuts, Carpathian Walnuts, Chinese Chestnuts, American Chestnuts, Pecans and edible Pines. Rhora’s also carries a variety of rare and unusual trees and shrubs.