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The Windsor-Essex Chamber of Commerce ‘Business Excellence Awards’ presented by Windsor Star are going virtual.

Despite best intentions by the Chamber and the volunteer organizing committee to hold the event with limited in-person attendance, uncertainty over COVID-19 conditions and which level of restrictions will be in place on May 20th has led to the decision to hold the ‘Business Excellence Awards’ (BEAs) in a totally virtual format.

“The Awards have always been about recognizing business excellence in our region” states BEA Chair Jason Toner.  “But first and foremost, they are about the safety of our guests, Sponsors, Partners and staff at the Chrysler Theatre and St. Clair College Centre For The Arts”.

Although there will be no in-person audience, as previously announced the 30th anniversary of the ‘Business Excellence Awards’, produced by Media Street Productions, will be available live on the YourTV YouTube channel and also to local Cogeco television subscribers of YourTV.  The broadcast will start at 7:00pm and follow the same format as when the BEAs are held in person. 

A total of 12 ‘Business Excellence Awards’ will be handed out.  This year’s Believe Windsor Essex Award winner, sponsored by WFCU, is FARROW while the recipient of the ATHENA Leadership Award, sponsored by Bell, is Marlene Corey.  All other Award winners will be a surprise until announced by the category Sponsor.  The list of Finalists and Sponsors is available at  Gordon Orr, CEO of Tourism Windsor Essex Pelee Island, will be the Host.

A unique, locally themed ‘Stay At Home Ticket Package’ will allow purchasers to select where to redeem their dinner voucher from a variety of restaurants, wineries, breweries and coffee shops in the city and county.  The current list of eateries, including options for catering and group orders, is attached.  More restaurants will be added in the coming weeks.

Each ‘Stay At Home Ticket Package’ includes exclusive access to the YouTube stream as well as a Johnson Insurance BEA Gift Bag, featuring a bottle of wine from the EPIC Wineries collective, and other items from local sponsors and makers to provide a fun, safe and unique viewing experience.  The current list of Gift Bag items is attached, with more to come.

Sales of the ‘Stay At Home Ticket Package’ start March 4th on the Chamber’s web site.  Companies and individuals who purchased tickets for the ‘Business Excellence Awards’, originally scheduled for May 21, 2020, will be contacted by the BEA Committee with information on the new offerings.  The choice of restaurants will be on a first available basis.

The ‘Business Excellence Awards’ Official Program, printed by Windsor Star, will be distributed on May 13th and also in a digital format. The program will be included in all Johnson Insurance BEA Gift Bags.  Information on advertising opportunities is available from Windsor Star. 

“In person networking is a big part of the ‘Business Excellence Awards’ and truthfully that part will be missed” comments Toner.  “But people will still get to see the glitz and glamour that’s part of the event and we’re adding some interactive elements on social media.  Our committee is already planning the BEAs for May 2022 for a live audience”.  Nominations for next year’s Awards will open in the summer.

The ‘Business Excellence Awards’ are the premier business event of the year.  They not only put the spotlight on local companies and individuals while celebrating their success, the BEAs also engage and incorporate local suppliers, vendors and partners.  For updates, follow WE Business Excellence Awards on Facebook, on Twitter @BEAwards20 and at #BEA20 on Instagram.  

BEA ‘Stay At Home Ticket Package’

Current list of restaurants where ticket buyers can redeem their $100 gift card:

  • Eat, Drink, Dine, Kingsville (valid at any of the 12 Member businesses)
  • Mazaar Lebanese Cuisine, Downtown Windsor
  • Mazaar Lebanese Cuisine, South Windsor
  • Mezzo Ristorante and Lounge
  • Joey’s Seafood Restaurant
  • Jose’s Bar and Grill, Windsor
  • Jose’s Bar and Grill, Leamington
  • La Guardia Italian Cuisine
  • St. Clair College Centre For The Arts  (take-out and delivery only)
  • Thanasis Olympus Greek Restaurant
  • The Cheese Bar
  • The Keg Devonshire
  • The Keg Riverside
  • The Vines Restaurant at Cooper’s Hawk Vineyards Winery
  • Vito’s Pizzeria

Subject to availability, first available basis, more restaurants will be added

Items in the Johnson Insurance BEA Gift Bag include:

  • A bottle of wine from the EPIC Wineries
  • Face covering courtesy of ParkerDKI
  • Notebook provided by Motor City Community Credit Union
  • Ocean Bottom Soap courtesy of Gisele Lavasseur, RBC Mortgage
  • Gourmet popcorn bag
  • Handi-wipes courtesy of University of Windsor Alumni Association
  • Bottle of water from Pure Water Brand
  • Tile coaster from Floor Coverings International
  • Complimentary saganaki from Thanasis Olympus Restaurant
  • Scented candle courtesy of Walkerville Candles
  • Munchies provided by ONESource Moving Solutions
  • USB plug from DS Electric
  • Selfie Photo Props provided by Pirkko Marketing
  • Official BEA Program printed by Windsor Star

More items to be added. Contents subject to change.

Tickets available at