This past Tuesday was Groundhog Day. The day when the groundhog comes out of his burrow and if he sees his shadow, returns back to his home and there are six more weeks of winter. No shadow and Spring is on its way. Apparently this winter tradition began back in the 1840’s in North America from traditions brought by those of German descent. It would be nice if Spring were to come early but we can handle another 6 weeks if needed.
Unfortunately there have been two devastating fires in Ontario this year that have resulted in eight people losing their lives. Both fires occurred in homes and in each, four people perished. Fire is one thing we both need and one requiring respect. We require fire to heat and cook but we must respect that when not controlled it can have unexpected consequences.
We are served by a dedicated group of volunteer firefighters who look after our emergencies with professionalism and empathy. As a rural and semi rural community, often the firefighters must truck water to the emergency scene. In the southern part of the village there are fire hydrants that can be used in the event of a fire. If the hydrant is buried in snow it takes valuable time for the hoses to be hooked up and water moving. If there is a fire hydrant near you, take a few minutes and clear the snow 3 meters all around it so that if it is needed, there won’t be a delay. Also with many people working at home and with kids learning online, it’s a perfect opportunity to review your family fire safety plan and practice having two ways out. And don’t forget to check your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. These valuable devices provide the early warning needed in the event of an emergency and require testing regularly.
February, along with being the shortest month of the year also is the month of some significant events. This Sunday is Valentine’s Day and we share our sentiments with those we love. Heart and Stroke month is celebrated in February and if you don’t know how to do CPR there are many online courses that you can take. Doing CPR and using an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) are key in saving someone who has suffered a Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Remember, there is an AED outside the community centre and it is available at all times for anyone to use.
This year Family Day is on the 15th, next Monday. February 15 is also National Flag of Canada Day. This marks the anniversary of our national flag that came into service on February 15, 1965. If you have our national flag, please hoist it high this weekend and help celebrate this great country we call home.
The week of February 15 to 21 is Ontario Heritage Week. Heritage Week is an opportunity for individuals and communities to reflect on their contributions to Ontario, how heritage is conserved, promoted and commemorated, and how they might shape the future. Springwater Township will be celebrating Heritage Week with some interesting virtual events and trivia. Check their social media pages and participate.
From the history of the Anten Mills Community Association we learn this week that there was a Winter Carnival during the weekend of January 26, 1974. The Barrie Examiner had the following description posted in the newspaper. “With all the interest over the Wyevale Winterfrolic and the Waverley winter carnival, let us not forget to mention the Anten Mills winter carnival which was held on Saturday January 26. In its own way this carnival was most successful because, while not on the scale of the Wyevale or Waverley carnivals, the Anten Mills event did serve to bring the community’s residents together for some fun and friendly competition. Anten Mills is growing but it is good to see that despite getting bigger, the community is still retaining its spirit of neighourliness and friendliness as evidenced by this recent winter carnival event.” It’s been several years since a winter event has been held at the rink and community centre and obviously it can’t occur this year. For those who remember these events they no doubt bring back happy memories. It would be of immense benefit to the community to have them again and it can only be achieved by residents stepping up and taking a leadership role. Think about it and when the Community Recreation Association holds its next meeting, attend and participate, everyone is welcome.
A longtime resident and overall great person celebrated a milestone birthday recently. From all of the community we hope that you had a great birthday John and may you have many more!
That’s all for now, Stay Healthy, Stay Strong, Stay Safe. Antenmills1@gmail.com.