Six decades of dedication to The Royal

TORONTO, Nov. 12, 2015 /CNW/ - Bill Braden was hoping to go out on a high note on what could be his last year exhibiting at The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair (RAWF). After 60 years of showing hogs, sheep, vegetables and, now, heritage turkeys, Braden is thinking of retiring. He was hoping to get Grand Champion turkey, but he had to settle for the Reserve designation.

"I got Reserve when I started in 1954 and now I'm ending with Reserve," says Braden of Bonnie Boyne Farm in Alliston. Braden's commitment to The Royal is so strong that he donates the trophy for Best Turkey. The trophy handed out at the 2015 RAWF is the second trophy, he explains, because the first one wore out! In the many years he has sponsored the class, Braden's name has appeared as Champion all but three times. This year, the honour will go to Greg Bray of Innisfil for a Bourbon Red Old Male.

"I wanted to donate a trophy because I want a record that I've been here," Braden says. But he won't soon be forgotten because he was awarded the John Tilt Memorial Award for his contribution to the poultry division. In addition, his grandson Anthony Braden is now showing poultry at The Royal,  continuing in his grandfather's footsteps.

Braden concentrates on showing turkeys to help preserve heritage breeds and he ships eggs across Canada as part of his preservation initiative. He says he has no idea how many ribbons he's won in his six decade tenure at The Royal but they fill several boxes.

The Royal is supported in part by the City of Toronto and the Province of Ontario.

The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair is the world's largest combined indoor agricultural and equestrian show. This year, the 93rd Royal Agricultural Winter Fair runs November 6-15, 2015 at Exhibition Place, Toronto. For competition schedules, live webcasting, results and to purchase tickets, please visit

SOURCE Royal Agricultural Winter Fair

Image with caption: "Bill Braden at the 2015 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair (CNW Group/Royal Agricultural Winter Fair)". Image available at:

For further information: Karen Poncelet, Marketing Communications and Community Relations Mgr, The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair, 39 Manitoba Drive, Exhibition Place, Toronto, ON M6K 3C3, Direct: 416-263-3411 Fax: 416-263-3488


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