Explore Durham Region’s tempered past on this new drink tour

Beer lovers take note: there’s a new way to explore the growing brewery scene in Durham Region. “Drama in Durham: War on Whiskey” is part of the Temperance and Temptation tours launched last month in York, Durham, Headwaters – the area North-East of Toronto that includes everything from Caledon to Oshawa. bootlegger-band The tour exists as a self-guided experience (check out the map here) or for a lucky few who snag a spot, a fully immersive guided experience full of mystery, intrigue and of course, drama. We got to test drive the first ever guided tour of Durham Region, one of our favorite beer region’s in the province. Without ruining too many of the surprises found along the way, here’s what happened. Unlike the tour suggests, there is very little actual drinking of whiskey on the guided tour. There is however, Mag Ruffman*, who, along with a troup of talented actors â€‹brings the stories of the region to life through re-enactments and song. terra-nova-01
*Okay, let’s take a moment and acknowledge how cool this is. Margaret “Mag” Ruffman is a Canadian comedian and actress. You may remember her from some quintessential Canadian television like Anne of Green Gables and Road to Avonlea.

We started our day at the Uxbridge Historical Centre where, with the secret password, we were let in to explore Joe’s Barbershop, a speak-easy slash museum depicting the temperance movement in the area. After a few rounds of cards and a game or two of dice, we moved on the heritage railway where we were greeted by banjo players for our train car lunch of Ontario cheeses and beers from The Second Wedge Brewery in Uxbridge. 
 Each tour features different stops and stories, focusing on the local history of each region. In Durham, we then moved on to explore Old Flame Brewery and Brock Street Brewing Company, before checking into our hotel. All along the way, we’re followed by Mag, a fierce temperance lady on the hunt for bootleggers. In the morning, we’re carted off to explore a winery and distillery in York.
The guided experiences start at $399 per person and include everything – your food, drink, hotel and transportation. It’s one of the few fully loaded, all-inclusive tours in the province. If guided is not your style, there’s also self-guided experiences in all three regions. They’re all a little different and don’t necessarily overlap with the guided experience, so you could do both!

Interested? Find out more about the The Durham Story here.

For more ways to eat, drink and play in Durham Region, check out Durham Tourism.

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