Joanne’s Downtown Memory

The Burlington Downtown Business Association is celebrating 40 years of memories!

From November 15 – December 15th, 2020 we invited all residents and business owners to join us for a walk down memory lane for a chance to make even more memories with one of 3 grand-prize overnight visits to our beautiful downtown core. View full contest here.

When my grandparents purchased the Coronation Public House on Brant Street in downtown Burlington in 1963, it’s unlikely that they imagined their hard work and dedication would build over 40 years of history and memories. Over the years, Burlington residents and city visitors were drawn to their family-run business that expressed hospitality, extended friendship, and much like the business motto claimed, it was the place Where Good Sports Meet. Shortly after the purchase of the business, my dad became part of the management team for The Corn (as it was later nick-named by our regular customers). For this reason, from a very young age I too knew what it felt like to be part of a family-run business. When I was about five years old, I would proudly hang individual bags of chips and peanuts on a display for the customers to purchase. Throughout the years, our family and employees would arrive in the early morning to prepare for the 11am opening. There was never a shortage of work.

Joanne's Downtown MemoryWe were busy unloading food and beverage deliveries, wiping down tables and chairs, filling salt and pepper shakers, doing repairs, prepping food in the kitchen and cleaning the basement party room after a previous night’s celebration. I remember all the scrubbing and cleaning but I also remember the fun and many laughs. I just never knew who might stop by The Corn to say hello or share a story or two! As a business that was very connected to the city, we purchased much of our food, beverages and services from other local business. Relationships mattered. We supported each other’s livelihood. The Coronation was a place where people gathered with friends and other players of their local sports team. They shared a bite, watched sporting events and championship games, and perhaps enjoyed a pint or two. My hero and late-dad, John Yurincich, was an avid sports fan and most notably a fan of his customers. He was always smiling, telling jokes, listening to their stories, and he made everyone feel at home. The Coronation was a member of the Burlington Downtown Business Association. My dad and Uncle David also gave back to their community and led fundraising for local charities on a regular basis. They supported the Burlington Braves, Children’s Wish Foundation, Joseph Brant Memorial Hospital, Variety Village, YMCA camp for kids, Burlington Food Bank and so much more.

The Coronation was always involved with the special events held downtown. After the annual Santa Clause parade, patrons would stop by to enjoy the holiday spirit and a snack on a serving of wings, a hamburger or fish and chips – just to name a few of the favourites. I recall adding green food colouring to the draft beer for the St. Patrick’s Day walk, sitting on the flat roof of the Coronation to watch fireworks in Spencer Smith Park, and serving cold drinks to the runners of the Moon in June Race. Perhaps one of my favorite memories was the annual Sound of Music Festival, an event that required my entire family and many friends to have allhands- on-deck to serve the hundreds of patrons that would stop by that weekend. Each year we would transform our parking lot into a huge patio filled with tables, chairs and a stage. Throughout the festival weekend, customers enjoyed the talent of local musicians and a chance to meet up with friends both old and new.

Downtown Burlington is a place that fills my soul with energy, joy and wonderful memories. I continue to live near the core with my family, never too far from the beauty of the downtown area and the dedicated people that make it what it is today. Downtown Burlington is a place to support local business, reminisce with family and friends, and an opportunity to make new memories. It is the place that has already captured my heart. For me, downtown Burlington is home.