It’s time to celebrate 10 years of Bridges to Better Business and we are going BIG!

This year, to celebrate 10 years of building Bridges, we are incredibly excited to be back at the Elgin County Railway Museum and are thrilled to present a one of a kind experience featuring Mike Downie, award winning documentary filmmaker and brother of Gord Downie, and Choir! Choir! Choir!

Mike is a celebrated inspirational storyteller who will take the audience on a ride exploring how our stories define us. Mike will be joined by Choir! Choir! Choir! for a community building performance that will leave attendees inspired and energized to build up and grow the incredible small business community that is St. Thomas and Elgin County.

To start the event off, attendees will enjoy the amazing Food Showcase featuring the culinary excellence in our community and celebrate the creative, thriving, and vibrant small businesses in St. Thomas and Elgin County. Don’t miss this incredible opportunity for a one of a kind event that is so uniquely local and perfectly encapsulates our local story of entrepreneurship!

The Elgin/St. Thomas Small Business Enterprise Centre team is thrilled about the new direction of this event and to have you to join in the celebration of 10 years of Bridges to Better Business.

5 pm – 6 pm: St. Thomas Elgin County Food Showcase and Networking
6 pm – 6:15 pm: Opening Remarks
6:15 pm – 6:45 pm: Elgin/St. Thomas Small Business Awards
6:45 pm: Mike Downie followed by Choir! Choir! Choir!
8:45 pm: Closing Remarks


If you are interested in a group rate of 8 or more, please contact


Mike Downie, Documentary Film Maker

Mike Downie

Award-Winning Documentary Filmmaker | Co-Founder, Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund

Mike Downie is a multi-award-winning documentary filmmaker and the co-founder of the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund. A celebrated and inspirational storyteller, Downie takes his audiences on a ride that explores how stories define us, remind us of our past, and shape our future, both as individuals and as a nation.

Downie shares memories from growing up in a small town, leaving home to work in a mine, and watching his brother – celebrated musician Gord Downie- rise to fame, to travelling the world and directing award-winning documentary films.

One story in particular has been life-changing for Downie – Chanie Wenjack, an Ojibway boy who died while trying to run away from his residential school. Downie told the tragic tale to his brother Gord and the two vowed to find a way to share this story with the world. The result was the multi-media project Secret Path that has captured the hearts and minds of Canadians across the country.

Downie is a writer, director, and producer of numerous award-winning documentaries including Secret Path, Invasion of the Brain Snatchers, One Ocean, and The Hockey Nomad.

Before his career in film and television, Downie worked as a deep shaft miner in Northern Ontario; a medical researcher at McGill University; a junior economist in Toronto; and as a windsurfing instructor in the US Virgin Islands. He holds a Bachelor of Science with Honours from Queen’s University, and an MBA from York University’s Schulich School of Business.

“Gord and I spend our lives learning, again and again, the power in a story, everyone’s story.”


Choir! Choir! Choir!

International Singing Phenomenon | Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman

Choir! Choir! Choir! has sung with Teagan and Sara at the Junos, performed at a David Bowie tribute in New York, and have even take to the Radio City Music Hall stage with Debbie Harry and The Flaming Lips. A collective led by creative directors Nobu Adilman and Daveed Goldman, the group has amassed a dedicated and passionate community of singers, along with a thriving international fan base on YouTube and beyond. Acclaimed for the ways in which the group brings music alive, its true importance may lie in something much more fundamental: it brings people-from all walks of life- together.

Founded in 2011, Choir! Choir! Choir! requires no auditions – everyone is welcome, and each week between a hundred and three hundred participants show up at a bar or concert hall, to sing and rehearse any number of pop songs.

Daveed and Nobu share the choir’s story with audiences, explaining how being open can lead to great achievements, and how singing with one another can bring teams closer.



The culinary landscape of Elgin County and St. Thomas is growing and the Food Showcase is an amazing opportunity to try a whole lot of options in one place! Show these businesses some love and be sure to visit their locations or look for them at other local events for more opportunities to get a #tasteofstthomas and #savourelgin! We are excited to have these businesses joining us this year!

Catering Port

Clover Pecan

Custom Catering Co.

Elgin Acres

Elgin Harvest

Farmer’s Kitchen

Grandma’s Oven 

Kosuma Energy Bar

Let’s Cook Italian

Mitchell’s Soup Co.

Quaker Springs Farm

Salt & Pepper Meals

Seed Confections

Shebaz Shawarma & Falafel

Tikka Tomato

Thrive Nutrition & Yoga

Two Forks

The Welsh Baker

Wildflowers Farm

The Windjammer Inn

There will also be a cash bar featuring Quai du Vin, Caps Off Brewing Co., and Railway City Brewing Co.


Each year, we have the opportunity to meet with some incredible people and it’s exciting to be able to honour a few of them with awards during Bridges to Better Business. It’s another way to show the Elgin and St. Thomas Small Business Community our support. We are excited to present the following awards at the event!

St. Thomas Small Business Award

Elgin County Small Business Award

St. Thomas Economic Development Award

Elgin County Economic Development Award

Libro Small Business Award

Inspirational Entrepreneur Award

Under 40 Award

Starter Company Plus Award

Summer Company Award

Promising Start Up Award

Lifetime Achievement Award 


Events like this one don’t come together without a community of support and we are incredibly thankful for the businesses that help us help others and build bridges!

Platinum Partners

Silver Partners

Bronze Partners

Media Partners





378 Talbot St.
St. Thomas, ON Canada
N5R 3L7

519-631-1680 ext 4503

“Creating an ecosystem where small businesses in Elgin County and St. Thomas can connect, learn and grow their business.”







8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

12:00 PM – 8:00 PM

8:30 AM – 4:30 PM

MON: 8:30A – 4:30P

TUES: 8:30A – 4:30P

WED: 8:30A – 4:30P

THURS: 12P – 8:00P

FRI: 8:30A – 4:30P