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Other Interesting Community Stories

Audiences and Artists are Re-energized by Theatre Collingwood’s New Porchside Festival!
Collingwood, ON: Theatre Collingwood is overjoyed by community response to its inaugural summer series, known as the Porchside Festival, which came together in response to Ontario’s guidelines that allow for small-sized gatherings taking place outdoors in Step 2 of the Roadmap to Reopen. 14 talented artists were invited by Theatre Collingwood to perform for audiences of just 25 people who bring their own lawn chairs to the private backyards of some of the town’s most historic homes for a one-of-a-kind entertainment experience. After many months of coordinating with the actors and musicians through online meetings and virtual rehearsals, the shows were matched up with the ideal locations, and the festival commenced on July 8th with Maja Ardal’s captivating one-act play, A Cure For Everything.  “We know that people have been looking forward to the return of live entertainment, but there is something really special happening both for the artists and for the patrons who are attending our summer series this year. The basis of what we do in theatre is gather people together to share stories. After such a long intermission, it’s energizing for everyone when the performers on stage reconnect with a live audience,” says Erica Angus, Executive Director of Theatre Collingwood. Arts enthusiasts acted fast to snap-up the available tickets when information about the festival was announced earlier this spring. All 24 performances sold-out before opening night. However, with the province moving into Step 3 on Friday, July 16, and in response to the overwhelming popularity of this initiative, Theatre Collingwood has made the decision to release a limited number of tickets to upcoming shows in the festival where locations allow for larger numbers with social distancing. The company is also excited to announce the addition of a well-known local performer to the roster. Alt-folk singer-songwriter, Shane Cloutier will join the Porchside Festival for two performances next month on Saturday, August 7th and Sunday, August 8th. “Theatre Collingwood has worked hard to stay vibrant during the pandemic while continuing to offer our community opportunities to connect and be entertained. This festival is a small step forward in our return to live events and we’re thrilled to welcome Shane Cloutier to the playbill,” says Angus. For nearly forty years, Theatre Collingwood has staged live professional theatre around South Georgian Bay. The Porchside Festival is designed to strengthen and restore community connection with an emphasis on accessibility and inclusion. The company’s vision is to grow the festival over the next three years to enable audiences to hear more diverse voices and to see many cultures represented on stage through the magic of live performance. Theatre Collingwood wishes to acknowledge financial support received from The Province of Ontario, The Town of Collingwood, Tourism Simcoe County, Blue Mountain Resort, TD Bank, EPCOR, Tim Hortons and Royal LePage Locations North for its 2021 Season. Local individuals and businesses also provided sponsorship for each production in the Porchside Festival. To purchase tickets, please call Theatre Collingwood’s Box Office at 705-445-2200 or visit www.theatrecollingwood.ca.

Georgian offering virtual events for people who want to get to know us
Curious about Georgian College and want to find out more about your postsecondary options? We’re here to help. The college is offering a series of Get to Know Georgian virtual events on Tuesday evenings over the summer – July 20 and Aug. 31. Each event will run from 5 to 6 p.m. and will cover programs and services at all campus locations. Get to Know Georgian virtual events are helpful whether you’re thinking about attending Georgian yourself or are a parent or supporter of a future student about to graduate from high school. Data shows that high school students have been particularly reluctant to apply or register for college during the pandemic. They’ve also had a stronger-than-normal tendency to stay close to home. Wherever you are in the educational journey, these events are your opportunity to connect with our friendly recruitment team about all things Georgian – located right here in your community. Get to Know Georgian is a great opportunity to learn about your flexible study options, including 130+ programs and options for full-time, part-time and online study. You can also: get information on the many supports available to students find out about the Georgian Learning Guarantee discover financial aid options learn about student life, activities and clubs and more. Each event includes a Q&A session, so come prepared with your questions. Plus, those ready to apply can learn how Georgian will cover the $95 OCAS application fee so they can apply for FREE! Register online and get full details about all the upcoming sessions at GeorgianCollege.ca/GetToKnowGeorgian.

Tiny announces “Beach Bundles” a 2021 Pilot Program to support local businesses
The Township of Tiny is excited to announce a new pilot program intended to support Tiny businesses while providing opportunities for families to enjoy a day at the beach. ‘Beach Bundles’ will support the local economy by infusing monies in participating local merchants. Each bundle includes a single-day use parking permit valid on either Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday at one of Tiny’s five major beaches – Woodland, Bluewater, Jackson, Balm, Lafontaine. It also includes 50 Tiny Dollars to be spent at any of the participating businesses. Participants are encouraged to ‘spread the wealth’ by shopping at more than one merchant. At the May 19 Regular Meeting of Council, Deputy Mayor Steffen Walma expressed the need to support the local economy, “it’s important to recognize the financial hardships being endured by local businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic and do what we can to support them.” “Beach Bundles” are available for purchase as of July 20, 2021. Individuals and families should plan to purchase and pick-up their Beach Bundle the same day they wish to visit the beach. The cost is $50.00 per bundle. The program runs for 6 weeks and opportunities are limited so don’t delay. Please visit www.tiny.ca/beachbundle for detailed information regarding this initiative along with the list of participating vendors. 

Fight Like Mason Foundation is Taking the Fear out of Paediatric IV Treatment
Themed intravenous poles will help young Soldiers’ patients live out their superhero dreams. ORILLIA, ON – The Fight Like Mason Foundation (FLMF) is donating nine “Mason Power Poles” — IV poles disguised with superhero, emoji and bright-coloured branding — to make treatment less scary and more empowering for young patients at Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital. The poles were donated with financial support from the Miles Hammond Endowment Fund and will be used in both the Paediatric Outpatient and Inpatient Departments and the Paediatric Oncology Clinic. The FLMF got involved with Soldiers’ after learning about the Hammonds, a local family who recently lost their young son to cancer. The organization is a registered charity named in honour of Mason Bacon-Macri, a 4-year-old Ontario boy who died in 2016 after his own brave and hard-fought battle with cancer. His parents, Chantelle and Iain, created the Foundation to honour his short life by giving other children a chance to fight just like Mason did. “We made Mason a promise that we would continue his fight and that’s what we’re doing today,” shared Chantelle Bacon, Mason’s mom and one of the co-founders of the Fight Like Mason Foundation. “We love when we can bring these poles into a hospital to make any child happy. Even if it’s sad when we’re honouring other kids who passed away, it’s still good to know we’re not alone in this childhood cancer world.” Kate and Kent Hammond’s one-year-old son Miles lost his young life earlier this year after battling cancer. The family’s experience touched everyone at Soldiers’ and the community at large, resulting in a record number of donations to the Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital Foundation in Miles’ honour. “Miles was a really, really smiley baby,” said Kate Hammond, Miles’ mom. “All the nurses and doctors — he just adored everyone — and that joyful attitude will be carried on through these poles that other kids will use.” The new poles will be used throughout the Paediatric Program at Soldiers’. “It is great to be able to launch something as wonderful and heartfelt as this,” expressed Audra Jesso, Program Manager of Paediatrics and Children’s Services at Soldiers’. “Miles left an imprint on all of our hearts. As much as you’re in the hospital, our goal is to always make sure the experience is the best it can be, under the circumstances. We now have one pole for every patient room and the nurses are excited to use them and the kids will love them. It helps us take better care of our kids and families.” Also in his memory, the Hammond family created the Miles Hammond Endowment Fund to support ongoing paediatric needs at Soldiers’. Miles’ dad, Kent Hammond, added, “After all the great care we had at Soldiers’, it was really important for us to invest our time and energy into Soldiers’ because it’s directly affecting our community. We’re hoping on an annual basis to rally our friends and family to be able to continue to donate to the OSMH Foundation.” Through their grief, these two families are inspiring others to make a difference in honour of Mason and Miles. To learn more about the Fight Like Mason Foundation, please visit fightlikemason.org. To make a donation to the Miles Hammond Endowment Fund in support of paediatric needs at Soldiers’, please visit osmhfoundation.ca/donate. About Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital Foundation. The OSMH Foundation is a proud partner of Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital and the communities it serves. The Foundation fundraises to purchase medical equipment, sustain programs and assist the Hospital in maintaining its position as a leader in providing quality community-based healthcare.

It Looks Like S.S. Keewatin Will NOT Be Part Of Ontario’s Re-Opening!
Port McNicoll, ON – The charity that restored S.S. Keewatin and has operated her as an historical attraction for the last seven seasons announced today that it did not expect to re-open the ship to visitors in 2021. “We are still fenced-out” said Wayne Coombes, President of The RJ and Diane Peterson Keewatin Foundation, popularly known as Friends of Keewatin. “We offered to request that our volunteers resume conducting tours of the ship in return for performing the maintenance necessary to prevent her deterioration, but her owner, Skyline Investments Inc. did not even bother to acknowledge receipt of the offer, let alone reply to it.” “This is a blow to tourism in the region.” said Coombes. “KEEWATIN is a top-ranked attraction, awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for the last four seasons, and boasting a Google Reviews rating of 4.6 out-of 5. We understand KEEWATIN ranks among cruise ship passengers’ most requested attractions and has the highest satisfaction level reported in post visit surveys conducted by cruise ship companies.” “We’re concerned about her condition” said Fred Addis, Friends of Keewatin’s Curator. “When Skyline fenced us out a year ago, they interrupted needed repairs to the upper deck at the bow, which had only been started. The seals around structures and doorways had been removed for replacement leaving the ship in the worst possible situation. The bow has undoubtedly been leaking through last year’s rains, winter’s snow and ice, and this spring’s numerous thunderstorms, into the rooms below. Ships like KEEWATIN always needed continuous, knowledgeable attention… and at 114 years of age, as the only survivor, she certainly deserves it now!” “I said at the time that the excuse offered by Skyline for fencing us out… concern about COVID-19… was disingenuous, but clearly it has been shown now to have been ridiculous, as is any claim to be acting in the best interests of the ship.” said Coombes. “Equally, that a public company would choose to renege on its contractual commitments, its public promises to a community, and its moral obligations to volunteers seems inexplicable.” “We’re saddened to be prevented for another year from showing visitors the remarkable treasure KEEWATIN is, and telling the story of the CPR Upper Lake Service and life in the unique town of Port McNicoll at the time. Instead, we’ll spend our summer telling visitors what is going on… and trying to figure-out why.”

County of Simcoe New LINX Transit Route
The County of Simcoe celebrated the new LINX Transit Service route on Tuesday, July 20 at the Oakwood Community Centre. Route 6 will connect the communities of Midland and Orillia, with stops in Victoria Harbour, Waubaushene, Coldwater and Warminster, furthering linking communities right across Simcoe County to key service, health, labour and education hubs. There are already 5 other routes up and running.

LINX Route 1 provides 1 hour and 30 minute service from the Town of Penetanguishene to the City of Barrie
LINX Route 2 provides 60 minute service from Wasaga Beach to Barrie.
LINX Route 3 provides 2 hour service from Orillia to Barrie.
LINX Route 4 provides 60 minute service from Collingwood to Wasaga Beach.
LINX Route 5 provides 60 minute service from Alliston to Bradford​.
Schedules with service hours/dates can be found on the County of Simcoe website under LINX TRANSIT SERVICE.

Township of Tiny By-law Department Wraps up Noise Enforcement Campaign
Date: July 13, 2021
The “Noise Enforcement Campaign” took place between June 28 to July 5, 2021 with enhanced enforcement by Municipal By-law Enforcement Officers. The objectives of the campaign were to:

• Promote awareness of the new Noise Control By-law #21-028;
• Increase education and enforcement of the specific rules;
• Promote awareness of the By-law Department coverage.

Over the course of the 8-day campaign the By-law Department attended to 24 Noise complaints. During the campaign, a total of 9 charges were issued. There were 6 charges issued for loud music and 3 charges issued for yelling or shouting. Below is a breakdown of the 24 noise calls received during the campaign:

• 11 complaints were regarding loud music;
• 8 were regarding yelling and shouting;
• 4 complaints were filed regarding barking dogs;
• 1 was referred to the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP).

Dog owners are reminded to take precautions and address the issue of barking dogs before a complaint is filed with the By-law Department. The Township of Tiny would like to remind the public that the Noise By-law prohibits these activities 24 hours a day. Noise Control By-law #21-028, General Prohibitions Section 3.1, states, “No person shall emit or cause or permit the emission of noise resulting from any activity listed in Schedule “A” if clearly audible at a point of reception”. Under Schedule “A” General Prohibitions, the following activities are subject to prosecution pursuant to Section 3 of the By-law, if clearly audible at a point of reception:

1. The operation of any electronic device or group of connected electronic devices incorporating one or more loudspeakers or other electromechanical transducers, and intended for the production, reproduction or amplification of sound;

2. The operation of a stereo or other electronic device designed to amplify sound in, or on, a motor vehicle in such a way that the sound can easily be heard outside of the motor vehicle;

10. Ring bells, blow or sound any horn, yelling, shouting, hooting, whistling or singing;

12. Any unwanted or meaningless sound that in the opinion of the Officer is likely to disturb the inhabitants of the Township.

The By-law Department can be reached at (705) 526-4136 and will provide the following coverage:
Enforcement Summer Coverage Hours
Monday to Thursday (9:00am to 11:00pm)
Friday and Saturday (9:00am through to 3:00am)
Sunday (9:00am to 11:00pm)

To review the Townships By-laws, please visit: www.tiny.ca/Pages/Bylaws
To review recent By-law Enforcement Activity Reports, please visit: www.tiny.ca/bylawactivityreports
To receive Public Notices and Press Releases sign-up to receive Tiny Connect, please visit: www.tinyconnect.ca

Georgian statement re: Fall 2021 return to campus activity
Dear students and colleagues, On Friday, we received new direction from our Ministry of Colleges and Universities regarding plans for Fall 2021 and a resumption of on-campus activity. Shelley Tapp, Deputy Minister, wrote to advise that “assuming the continued progress of provincewide vaccination rates and continued improvements in key public health and health care indicators, it is anticipated that all in-person instruction and on-campus activities at PSE institutions would be permitted to resume without capacity limits of physical distancing requirements starting in Fall 2021.” Our Deputy Minister further indicated, “I want to emphasize that PSE institutions continue to have the flexibility to deliver academic instruction in the mode that best suits the needs of students and institutions including virtual and hybrid delivery models.” The ministry will release an updated framework in early August, to ensure alignment with the most current public health and safety guidance and advice for September 2021 and onwards. This is welcome news and something we have been looking forward to and planning for!  Our students have made their plans for the fall and in keeping with our commitment to them, our academic delivery schedule will remain the same for Fall 2021 and include a combination of remote online and in-person delivery. Georgian students and employees can expect a gradual increase in on-campus activity as the semester progresses. We will soon post what services will be available either in-person, online or both as well as what to expect when you return to campus. As required, we will update our health and safety protocols to align with our Ministry framework as well as our local public health unit requirements. They’ve served us well because you’ve followed them so rigorously. Please remember Georgian has a number of resources to help you manage your mental health, should you require support. Visit the student or employee portals for more information.  Working together, we’ve adjusted and adapted throughout the pandemic and will continue to do so, always keeping our students at the centre of our decision making and doing all that we can to ensure their health, safety and ultimate success. As more information is available and decisions are made, we’ll be sure to update you regularly. In the meantime, everyone is encouraged to get vaccinated – it will bring us all back together faster.

Community Health Hub soon to Launch a Coffee Cart Program and the Huronia Community Foundation is First to Donate in Support
Waypoint is launching a new Coffee Cart Employment Program at the Community Health Hub this fall. The Coffee Cart Program has been in the works for a couple of years, Jill Woodley, Jennifer Perriault and Anna Huson developed the plan to start the new program when Waypoint Outpatient Services moved into the Community Health Hub last May.  Unfortunately, Covid 19  delayed the start. The purpose of the Coffee Cart Program is to provide community clients’ training in customer service, cash handling and food service. This in-viro training is supported through evidence-based research and is an important step in training, assessing and enhancing job readiness skills. The program will operate out of the Community Health Hub, and will serve staff, clients, as well as the public. The cart itself was beautifully crafted by Marcelleville, using wood from a tree that was removed during the construction of the Community Health Hub. In addition to the new trees that have been planted, this locally crafted piece honours this beautiful space dedicated to the mental and physical wellbeing of our community.  The coffee cart logo was designed by Recreation Therapist Adam Vassair. Many thanks to all who have worked hard to make this program a reality.  A special thank-you to the Huronia Community Foundation and the Tom and Lucille Gay Memorial Fund for the wonderful donation in support of this program.  The Coffee Cart Program is set to launch in September.  

HCF’s Annual Community Grants Program Wrapping Up
HCF’s Smart and Caring grants program is wrapping up another successful year of supporting our local community by getting funds into the hands of those who need it the most. The program combined with our scholarships and other support from countless fund holders has disbursed $74,568.38 back to our communities in support of local charities and organizations. A huge shout out to our community volunteers who worked through the process this year and helped HCF direct the funds to organizations throughout the Southern Georgian Bay region. Smart and Caring is what HCF’s grants program is all about, it matches community needs with the generosity of our donors to support funding requirements serving the arts & culture, community services, environment, heathcare & mental health, youth & scholarships, seniors and sports & recreation.
The following is the complete list of HCF’s Smart & Caring Grant recipients:
Askennonia Senior Centre Inc. -$ 1,000.00
Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Simcoe -$ 1,300.00
Boys & Girls Clubs of North Simcoe -$ 650.00
Breaking Down Barriers An Independent Living Centre Inc. -$ 750.00
Catholic Family Services of Simcoe County -$ 800.00
CLH Foundation -$ 1,000.00
Community Reach North Simcoe -$ 1,000.00
E3 Community Services Inc. -$ 700.00
Elephant Thoughts Educational Outreach -$ 1,500.00
Friends of the Clearview EcoPark & Community Garden -$ 1,200.00
Friends of Wye Marsh Inc. -$ 1,000.00
Georgian Bay Cancer Support Centre -$ 2,000.00
Home Horizon Georgian Triangle Residential Services -$ 1,680.00
Hospice Huronia -$ 1,000.00
Midland Public Library -$ 750.00
Quest Art School + Gallery -$ 1,000.00

HCF 2021 Grants – Final Funding Allocations:
Scientists in School -$ 1,000.00
Severn Sound Environmental Association -$ 1,500.00
Sistema Huronia Music Academy -$ 1,000.00
Warm and Cozy Children’s Charity -$ 1,200.00
Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care -$ 1,000.00

HCF supports CLH Foundation’s Commitment to Care
This year, CLH Foundation’s fundraising efforts will help ensure that individuals who live in CLH Supported Living Homes will continue to fully access the unfunded medical supplies and essential items they need to thrive. Covering these unfunded expenses, which are not covered by any traditional model of government support, has always been the practice of CLH, a tradition and level of care that is unique to CLH. The financial challenges of the past year have drawn attention to the need for CLH Developmental Support Services to find other ways to continue to cover these costs without placing any financial burden on the individuals themselves. CLH Foundation’s Commitment to Care campaign will help meet that need. The funds disbursed by Huronia Community Foundation from the “CLH Foundation Endowment Fund” will be directed to the Commitment to Care, and CLH are grateful to have this source of support to help meet our goals.

Tornado Recovery Information for affected residents
The City is working to ensure you have the support and resources you need during this challenging time. Please do not enter any homes unless deemed safe by City Building Officials. Visit barrie.ca/TornadoRecovery for the most current information and links to additional resources. If you need assistance, call the tornado assistance line at 705-728-8442 or visit City staff at the information centre in the trailer located near Saint Gabriel’s School (10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily). Red Cross number for residents directly affected: 289-206-8275

Waste Disposal and Clean-Up
Residents can throw out household garbage, building material or debris in public disposal bins in the area. Household hazardous waste items must be left beside the bins and City staff will remove them for proper disposal. An up-to-date map of all bin locations is available via barrie.ca/TornadoRecovery. City staff have also set up separate disposal bins to clean the streets and sidewalks. For safety reasons, please do not remove items from disposal bins. Once the streets are cleared of debris, street sweepers will go through the area to help facilitate travel, allow work crews to get through streets, and to allow residents to reach their homes safely.

Building Safety, Assessment and Repairs
Stay out of damaged buildings until they can be assessed and temporarily repaired. Unsafe orders have been issued and will be posted on homes that have suffered extensive structural damage and are deemed to be unsafe. If an order has not been posted on your house, and you think it may be unsafe, call the tornado assistance line at 705-728-8442 and Building Department staff will investigate. You can also email building.official@barrie.ca. If you are an affected resident, you will be provided with detailed information to assist you with next steps to take for property assessments, supports and help available, and how to handle temporary and final repairs. Contact your insurance company for an assessment of the property. If you are the tenant, call your landlord to notify them of the damage. Damage from the tornado may extend beyond what you can visibly see. The tornado has imposed loads on the buildings in excess of what it was designed for. We recommend an evaluation by your insurance company if you are concerned, even if an unsafe order has not been issued.

Fees waived at Barrie Landfill
For affected residents, fees will be waived at the landfill until July 23, and the landfill will be open on July 19 (usually closed on Mondays) to handle additional waste.

DO NOT park on the road. There will be a no parking order in effect for the affected areas overnight from Sunday, July 18 until Tuesday, July 20 so streets can be cleaned. A map of the no-parking area is available via barrie.ca/TornadoRecovery. Tow trucks will be brought in to help remove vehicles from the street if they can’t be moved due to damages.

Food Safety
If you lost power, your food may be affected. A power outage can result in certain foods becoming potentially hazardous for consumption. If you are unsure if a food is safe for consuming, throw it out. For more information on food safety following a power outage, visit “Emergency Preparedness” via simcoemuskokahealth.org.

Financial Support
If your home was damaged, document the damage as best you can for a property tax relief application, available via barrie.ca/PropertyTaxes. The Government of Ontario offers two programs that offer financial support following sudden, unexpected natural disasters. Visit emergencymanagementontario.ca for more information.

Water and Gas
Some homes that were damaged but remain habitable may have water service turned off. If people are returning home and need their water turned back on or have questions about water service, please call 705-726-4242 (follow the prompts if after-hours).

Enbridge Gas is working to restore gas service to affected customers when it’s safe to do so. It’s expected service will be restored to the majority of customers by end of day on July 17. Enbridge will go door-to-door to undertake this work for houses that are safe to occupy, and will need to access the inside of homes to safely relight natural gas appliances. Do not attempt to relight your own appliances.

Helpful Contacts

The Barrie Public Library Painswick branch (48 Dean Ave) offers computers, free wi-fi, and laptops that can be borrowed in-branch if you need internet or computer access. Call 705-728-1010 or visit barrielibrary.ca.

Ontario 211: Community and Social Services: call 2-1-1 or visit communityconnection.ca

Canadian Mental Health Association Simcoe County: cmhastarttalking.ca

Ontario SPCA support for anyone who needs temporary housing or food for their animal: 310-SPCA (7722).

Barrie Police Service Non-Emergency Line: 705-725-7025

Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868 or kidshelpphone.ca