bayfield breeze issue

The Bayfield BreezeIssue 650 Week 52 Vol 13

December 22, 2021


Issue 650 Week 52 Vol 13
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Members of county 4-H Sheep Clubs were busy showing the judge their best sheep handling during the 2021 Bayfield Hybrid Community Fair. Bayfield Agricultural Society members are already anticipating the 166th fair. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

December is the month where we all feel a sense of joy and excitement but it is also a time for reflection. The Bayfield Agricultural Society (BAS) wishes the extended community of Bayfield all the joy and happiness during this Christmas season and the very best for 2022. May you connect with family and friends in a safe and joyous manner and enjoy a sense of sharing and delight.

In reflection the BAS feels so grateful for the support it has received for putting on its annual agricultural fair in August. We were thankful that Senator Rob Black, our local, provincial and federal politicians and the Manager of the Ontario Association of Agricultural Societies were able to join with us as we celebrated the 165th fair in Bayfield. The community businesses, companies, clubs and individuals were generous in their financial support of the fair. Through a grant we were able to obtain accessible bleachers and sanitization stations to protect our fairgoers and give them a better fair experience. Three people stepped forward to become new Directors and our Secretary position is now filled. Even though COVID has influenced much of what the world is now able to do, the BAS felt fortunate that it was able to provide a safe and family-oriented event for the Bayfield community.

A special meeting was called for the new Board this past week where an agreement for a partnership with Kevin Morrison and Pat Foster for running the Sunday Market was confirmed. This exciting change will give the community a new experience every Sunday in Agricultural Park. Morrison and Foster have vendors already booking a spot for this market starting on the Victoria Day weekend. Each week will be a new experience where certain skills like blacksmithing are highlighted. Music might happen to soothe the spirits as booths are explored and possibly you will see local non-profit organizations set up to gain exposure to the crowds. The Board was thrilled to support this new venture which will bring more people into Bayfield to explore and see what the village has to offer. The Sunday Market will be a friendly and fun filled spot to visit.

As we look into 2022, the Board, under the leadership of Vicky Culbert, has a lot of work ahead of it. It will be looking after a potential fencing project to protect itself from animals, which might get loose during the fair, getting on the streets. Groups have approached the Society about having additional events during the fair. One resident has already shown the group his parade entry for next year which fits the theme perfectly. Additional volunteers are always welcome.

If you would like to be a candidate for Director, convenor, committee member and/or volunteer during the fair, contact to express your interest. A request for membership can also be made at that address.

The membership at its recent AGM thanked Ted Dunn and Don Brodie for their long-term commitment to the Ag Society. Dunn had been a Director for about 60 years and Don has easily been a Director over 20 years. As Dunn said, “It sort of grows on you.” No one expects our new Directors to commit to that length of term but it does prove the dedication that exists with Bayfield residents to their organizations. The organization wishes them well even though both are still on active committees. It was with sadness that the BAS learned of the passing of Don’s wife, Joan. Joan and Don looked after the art and photography section for many years and they hosted the annual wreath making at their farm. She will be missed.

During this celebration of Christmas and the New Year, let us remember the front-line workers who have faced so many battles during this pandemic as well as our farmers who have continued producing the food we often take for granted. A very blessed Christmas to all and a Happy New Year.



The Pink Flamingo Bakery and Boutique in the village is currently selling paint-your-own cookies and cookie kits to benefit Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines. (Submitted photo)

Five hundred and forty paint-your-own-cookies were sold by The Pink Flamingo Bakery and Boutique as a fundraiser for Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines – raising $2,700 for the Rescue.

“At this time, we would like to give a special shout out to Sharon Thompson at The Pink Flamingo Bakery for her outstanding efforts and continuous work in supporting Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines with her cookie fundraisers,” said Deb Penhale, representing Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines (BFF). “Each time just gets better and better. Sharon donates her time and all the supplies and 100 per cent of the proceeds. We think she is pur-fectly wonderful and we can’t thank her enough.”

BFF has helped hundreds of feral and abandoned cats find their forever homes but many are still waiting.


Beans (Submitted photo)



Beans, a black beauty, and Rebel, a little Silver Tabby are the Adopt-a-BFF kittens of the week.

When these siblings arrived at the Rescue on a cold wet night, Beans didn’t appear to be breathing and volunteers really couldn’t hear a heartbeat, but they warmed him up by putting him on a heating pad, got some probiotics and fluids syringed into him – every 20 minutes for several hours – and then every hour throughout the night after that and he revived and started to improve.

“One of our fabulous volunteers happened to be here upon their arrival and offered to take them home,” said Deb Penhale, representing BFF. “They needed a lot of time in care, more so Beans than Rebel, but with lots of TLC and a trip to the vet, these two have pulled through. They are now two healthy, delightful, little kittens.”

Beans and Rebel will be vetted and spayed/neutered in the New Year and will then be looking for their forever home. These kittens are currently about three months old, they are a bonded pair and would be fabulous in a home together.

Please emaiil for more information if you have room in your home for Beans and Rebel.

The adoption fee is now $200. Adopted cats are vetted, shots are up-to-date and they are also spayed or neutered. Donations are also always appreciated. E-transfers can be sent to the Rescue’s email or email to arrange for a drop off or pick up of donations. Cheques can be mailed to Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines, P.O. Box 33, Bayfield, ON, N0M 1G0


Bayfield Community Centre

Due to the generosity of community sponsors the public will be able to enjoy some time on the ice at the Bayfield Community Centre during the winter break.

“We are pleased to announce that our community sponsors have again supported daily free public skating throughout the holiday season,” said Director of Marketing, Jeff Kish.

From Dec. 20-24 there will be free public skating everyday from 1-3 p.m. The Albion Hotel is sponsoring the first hour each day while village resident, Laurien Trowell is sponsoring the second hour. Then from Dec. 27-30, free public skating will be offered daily from 1-2 p.m. thanks to the sponsorship of Bayfield Garage; followed by youth shinny hockey from 2-3 p.m. due to the generosity of Gayle Waters and Sam Gundy.

In addition, the community sponsored free community skating programs continue: Moms and Tots and Seniors on Mondays from 10:30-11:30 a.m.; Kids Shinny also on Mondays, 7-8 p.m.; and Public and Family Skate on Sundays, 1-3 p.m.


Canceled due to COVID restrictions. Notice will be given when sessions are to resume.

From now until the end of April, the Bayfield Artists Guild meets every second and fourth Wednesday of each month, in the basement of St. Andrew’s United Church, Hwy. 21, across from Clan Gregor Square.

The sessions run from 9 a.m. to noon.

Anyone who likes to paint or draw, and who would like to make new friends with a common interest, should feel free to drop in anytime to check them out. Double vaccination is required.


Trinity St. James Anglican Church in Bayfield will be hosting an in-person Christmas Eve Service but in keeping with COVID-19 protocols worshippers had to pre-register by Monday, Dec. 20 to attend.

There will be no Communion service on Sunday, Dec. 26 or Wednesday, Dec. 29. Morning Prayer will be held on Sunday Jan. 2, 2022 at 11 a.m. Regular services will resume on Wednesday, Jan. 5.


Just in time for the holiday season, Knox Presbyterian Church, Bayfield has a cookbook available for purchase and sales are going very well but it is not too late to purchase one for gift giving.

The Knox Church Cookbook has over 150 wonderful recipes provided by the congregation and former Ministers. The books are selling for $15 each and they can be ordered through any member of the congregation or by leaving a message on the Church phone at 519 565-2913.

The Church building is now open for in-person worship Sundays at 11 a.m. These worship services are also live streamed and recorded. For those who would prefer to participate from home the livestream can be found on YouTube at Knox Bayfield Sunday Service. The worship services are also recorded for later viewing on YouTube.

Unfortunately, the congregation of Knox Church, Bayfield will not be gathering for in-person worship for their upcoming special evening services. The Christmas Eve Service (Dec. 24) has been pre-recorded for people to view from home. These services will feature special music by violinist, Jamie Dow; pianist, Betty Lou Norris; and organist, Jean Walker.

To learn more visit for a link to the Knox YouTube page or follow them on Facebook at

The congregation of Knox Church, Bayfield wish everyone a safe and Merry Christmas!


The St. Andrew’s United Church building is now open for in-person worship Sundays at 11 a.m. and has been decorated for Christmas just in time for some special services to celebrate the season.

For the Christmas Eve service to be held on Friday, December 24 at 7 p.m. Rev. Campbell will preside over the service while Paul Howe will act as music director. Please note there will be no church services on Dec. 26 or Jan. 2. The congregation will gather again on Jan. 9.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, those wishing to attend will be required to observe public health measures such as, wearing a mask, providing proof of double vaccination and maintaining safe physical distance. These decisions have been made in the best interest and safety of the majority to keep everyone safe.

The quilters are back in the church hall on Tuesday mornings. A highlight of these get-togethers is coffee which is served at 10 a.m. when all enjoy a little social time. Visitors are welcome to join together to quilt or just to come for coffee.

St. Andrew’s was unable to hold a bazaar this year but they still have two large quilts, several baby quilts, and lots of lap quilts available. They also have some jams and jellies for sale. Anyone interested in purchasing or viewing the items is asked to contact Kathleen Siertsema by calling 519 565-2479 or via e-mail


The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) will kick off its 2022 season with its traditional Winter Hike and Lunch on Saturday, Jan. 15th.

The event will commence at 11 a.m. at the Varna Complex. Hikers of all ages are welcome to join a guided hike on the Taylor Trail and Mavis’ Trail, followed by a hot dog lunch outside in the covered pavilion. This is also the event at which BRVTA members are encouraged to renew their annual memberships and new hikers to join. Membership is $20 for individuals and $30 for families of two or more.

The Taylor Trail is an easy 1 km loop through the woods, while Mavis’ Trail is a more challenging 2.5 km circuit to the Bayfield River. Hikers may choose to do one or both, with the full distance taking about 90 minutes. Of course, on Jan. 15th trail conditions could be snowy or icy, so warm clothes and snow/ice cleats are recommended. Please note that participants will need to show proof of full vaccination to be admitted to the pavilion lunch, and masks are recommended except when eating or drinking. On the trails, masks are optional when distanced and the vaccination status of hikers is not checked.

Finally, the BRVTA sends a big thank you to everyone who attended 2021 hikes and events in 2021! Even though they had to cancel many dates, the Association hosted 184 people on 15 guided hikes, and that’s not counting those who participated in the Earth Day Litter Cleanup and the Terry Fox Run. The BRVTA sponsors these events and maintains the trails in service to the community.


Bring Pioneer Park home for Christmas!

For the Pioneer Park Association (PPA) Brad Turner, internationally acclaimed filmmaker and director, and Bayfield resident, has donated a limited edition of four images of Pioneer Park that capture a lifetime of memories. They are Turner’s homage to the stretching lawns, sheltering trees and majestic vistas. It is a part of his own dedication to the community’s healthy and vital future.

Views of Pioneer Park

A limited number of the prints are available now in support of the Pioneer Park Association. (Submitted photo)

Any, or all, of these images could make a wonderful gift this Christmas for those who hold a special place in their hearts for Pioneer Park with all proceeds going to the PPA. These 8” X 10” photographs have been handprinted, by Turner, on archival paper, hand signed “in composition”, and authenticated on the reverse. Individual prints are available for $125 each, or a full set can be purchased for $400.

They are available for purchase at The Gallery House, 16 The Square in Bayfield. Inquiries may be sent to Sandra via email or by calling 548-388-1101.



Janet Clarke (Submitted photo)

Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation (ABCF) is pleased to announce the appointment of local volunteer Janet Clarke as the newest member of the ABCF Board of Directors.

Dave Frayne, ABCF chair, said Clarke’s dedication and enthusiasm will benefit the work of the Foundation and benefit the entire community.

“On behalf of the Conservation Foundation, I would like to welcome Janet to our board and I know we will be stronger for her contributions,” he said. “I have had the honor of working closely with Janet on the Conservation Dinner fundraising committee where she is a long-time volunteer and a hard-working, diligent, and enthusiastic member.”

Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) approved her appointment, to the Foundation Board, at the ABCA’s regular Board meeting on Dec. 16.

“I am pleased and honored to be appointed as a member of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation’s Board of Directors,” Clarke said. “The Conservation Foundation has funded many worthwhile projects in local communities throughout the watershed and I look forward to supporting the work of the Foundation.”

She has volunteered with the Conservation Dinner Committee for a decade and is a Past Chair. She tutors students and she has been involved in many other local activities including volunteering with the charity golf tournament for the South Huron Trail, Owl Prowls, and the turtle program.

“I feel very fortunate to live close to the South Huron Trail and I often hike in the watershed,” she said. “I feel being a member of the Foundation board will help me to continue to learn more about the role the Foundation plays in the watershed area.”

A native of Toronto, Clarke has lived in Exeter since 1986. She said it was a lifelong dream to live in a small town and she said she is thrilled to have lived in South Huron for more than 30 years. A retired secondary school teacher, Clarke taught in Moosonee, Clinton, and Exeter before retirement.


2021 12 08 CNOY - FINAL

Those who participate in the Coldest Night of the Year Walk that raise over $150 – $75 for youth under 18 – will receive a CNOY toque. (Submitted photo)

United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is encouraging residents to bundle up and raise money for the third annual Coldest Night of the Year (CNOY) walk in Goderich, a family-friendly winter fundraising event for local individuals experiencing homelessness, hunger and hurt.

“We’re very happy to welcome CNOY back again this year,” said UWPH Goderich & Area Community Committee Chair Beth Blowes. “Funds raised address real challenges in Goderich and area around the issue of chronic homelessness. Based on the success of the past two walks, our community truly understands how important this issue is. We invite everyone to join us in working to raise $94,000 in support of our most vulnerable residents.”

By walking, participants will better understand the experience of being on the streets during a cold Canadian winter while raising funds to aid UWPH’s local work in support of the Huron Homelessness Initiative in Goderich. The initiative includes programs such as the Huron supportive housing worker, shelter for women, children and youth and temporary emergency shelter during the cold months.

This year’s Goderich walk includes a COVID-safe, outdoor event on Saturday, Feb. 26, and a virtual option to walk any time, any distance during the month of February. The in-person walk begins at 5 p.m. and features a two or five km circuit around Courthouse Square. Participants raising over $150 — $75 for youth under 18— receive a CNOY toque. To register as an individual or team, visit

Last year’s all-virtual CNOY raised $92,492 during the month of February thanks to the efforts of 232 walkers, 44 teams and 1,421 donors.


On Friday, Dec. 17, the Ontario government announced additional measures to slow the spread of the COVID-19 Omicron variant. These measures will help to safeguard Ontario’s hospitals and ICU capacity as the rollout of COVID-19 vaccine booster doses accelerates.

Omicron is highly transmissible and is spreading quickly across the province, now accounting for about half of cases. To learn more, visit the COVID-19 Science Advisory Table Fourth Wave dashboard at

“Huron Perth Public Health has investigated more than 150 confirmed COVID-19 cases over the past two weeks and we expect numbers will continue to rise,” said Medical Officer of Health for Huron Perth Dr. Miriam Klassen. “We believe the additional provincial measures will help to curb virus spread in our region and protect our local healthcare capacity.”

As a result of the expected surge in Omicron cases, Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) is implementing new case and contact management processes. Theye are relying on the public to help control virus transmission. Confirmed cases and their close contacts will be required to do the following:

  •  If you test positive for COVID-19, you must self-isolate for 10 days from the date your symptoms started or from the date you were tested, regardless of your vaccination status. Self-isolate means staying on your property, not interacting with anyone within your household (unless you are the primary caregiver of a young child) and not leaving unless you need medical attention. Arrange for someone else to drop off supplies (e.g. groceries) at your doorstep if needed.
  • Tell your close contacts so that they know to self-isolate as well. A close contact is someone you have been within two metres (6 ft) for 15 minutes or more, within the two days before your symptoms started, or two days before you got tested.
  • If you or your child are a close contact to a confirmed case, book a PCR test right away and again on or after day seven. Self-isolate for 10 days since the last time you interacted with the case, regardless of your vaccination status.
  • If you are a close contact of a confirmed case and test negative for COVID-19, you must still self-isolate for a full 10 days since your last interaction with the case. A 10-day isolation applies regardless of your vaccination status.

Although COVID-19 vaccines continue to provide some protection against severe illness and death, there is waning immunity against Omicron compared to other variants. It is important for everyone to get a COVID-19 vaccine booster dose as soon as they are able.

As of Dec. 20, adults aged 18 and older are eligible to book a COVID-19 booster at a mass vaccination clinic or select pharmacies as long as enough time has passed since their second dose. The interval between second and third doses has been shorted to three months (84 days). Use the dose calculator at to find out the earliest date you can receive the third dose.

HPPH is adding as many vaccine appointments and clinics as they can staff. Visit or call 1-833-753-2098 to book. They also continue to provide paediatric vaccines for those ages 5-11, and first and second doses for those aged 12 and older.

Visit the HPPH “Get a Vaccination” page for information on available clinics and other vaccination opportunities. Many partners are working together to provide as many vaccination opportunities as possible across the two counties.

A list of local pharmacies offering COVID-19 vaccinations is available at


The Conservation Dinner Committee held the community fundraiser as an online event, in 2021, for the first time. The Dinner Committee hopes guests will be able to gather in person again in 2022. The Conservation Dinner has supported projects in local communities for more than 30 years. The Dinner Committee has scheduled the fundraising event for Thursday, Apr. 7, 2022. The committee invites people to mark this date in their calendar and to watch for more information in the new year.

Chair of the Conservation Dinner Committee, Dave Frayne said. “We will work towards an in-person gathering. We also want to keep everyone safe so we will follow public health and municipal direction and have the Dinner in person only if and when it is safe to do so.”

Personal donations made now, this year, can be made and charitable gift receipts for income tax purposes provided for the 2021 tax year.

“We encourage people to donate to the work of the Dinner,” he said. “The Conservation Dinner supports parks and trails and conservation areas; conservation education for local youth; job experience and bursary programs for youth; turtle habitat and much more.”

The 2022 Conservation Dinner is scheduled to take place at the South Huron Recreation Centre at 94 Victoria Street East in Exeter. Holding the event in person will require pandemic adaptations and it will depend on the status of public health rules in 2022 and will also depend on municipal rules at that time. The Dinner Committee will post information at and in the new year, closer to the date, as more details are confirmed.

The Conservation Dinner fundraiser supports projects in local communities. Projects include parks and conservation areas; accessible nature trails in Bayfield, Clinton, Parkhill, Lucan, Arkona, Exeter, and Varna; outdoor nature education; a $1,000 student environmental bursary for students in local communities; a summer job at Ausable Bayfield Conservation for a senior secondary school student; turtle monitoring in Port Franks and Ailsa Craig; aquatic habitat studies in Old Ausable Channel at Grand Bend; and other projects.

This dinner and auction started in 1990. The Exeter Lions Club joined as co-partner in 1991. The net profits are split 50-50 between community conservation projects of the Foundation and community conservation projects of the Exeter Lions Club. The event has raised more than $1.255 million over more than 30 years.

To find out more visit and or phone 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.


The Huron Perth Public Health website is updated regularly with confirmed case counts received.

“Our online case reporting is not a real-time tool but is meant to keep the community informed on trends we are seeing,” explains Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Miriam Klassen.

For the latest statistics on COVID-19 cases in Huron and Perth Counties and also the per centage of people vaccinated please visit:


Member of Parliament for Huron-Bruce, Ben Lobb invites local businesses and organizations to apply for funding under the Canada Summer Jobs program. Applications close on Jan. 25th. Those interested can apply online through Service Canada:

This past year saw over 300 summer employment positions created by 224 successful applicants in Huron-Bruce. Applicants for 2022 should receive word about their funding starting in April.


United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is working to bring about their long-term vision of addressing significant local housing and community service infrastructure needs by incubating a planned Community Renewal Company (CRC).

“This is a large project that will have a lasting impact on Perth-Huron,” said UWPH Executive Director Ryan Erb. “After more than a year collaborating with existing agencies, government and other stakeholders, and with support from the Pillar Nonprofit Network, we are pleased to take our first steps. We’re very excited to share our vision with the community and start working on building the CRC so we can address issues such as access to affordable housing and social services across the region.”

The CRC’s initial focus will be on developing and operating affordable rental supply, supportive housing options and innovation in social service access and delivery, including the creation of community hubs to address the challenges some face finding social services where they live. The aim is to have a positive impact on pressing needs such as housing shortages, social isolation and challenges facing vulnerable populations such as mental health, addiction and poverty. The CRC will also play a critical role in the community development ecosystem, working to support and build relationships between local non-profit service providers and their supporters and advocates within the public, private and philanthropic sectors.

“We want to fill a void in the development of high need projects in our communities,” added Erb. “Of course, there are challenges involved in this kind of undertaking, but UWPH, through the CRC, is willing to do the work because it reinforces our strong belief as an organization that everyone is worth investing in. Imagine communities where everyone lives in an affordable, adequate, reliable and safe home. Communities where everyone has access to the social services they need. That’s a big goal, but we feel there is an appetite locally for this kind of endeavor and we want to do everything possible to build a brighter future for our entire region.”

For more information, visit


Conservation educators at Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) are hosting a Winter Open House tomorrow (Dec. 23).

“The event is free of charge and families are invited to drop in when they can,” said Denise Iszczuk, Conservation educator with ABCA. “The event offers something for families to do before Christmas Day while their children are not at school.”

These events are a chance to get outside at beautiful nature areas and to get active, she said.

The Winter Open House – with games, crafts, snowshoeing and “family fun” will take place on Thursday, Dec. 23, from 10 a.m. to noon at Morrison Dam Conservation Area, 71108 Morrison Line, east of Exeter. Conservation education staff invite teachers to stop by with their children to find out more about new hands-on winter programs for the schoolyard, which don’t require snow.

Staff and participants follow public health pandemic protocols to help keep everyone safe. To learn more contact ABCA at 1-888-286-2610 or through the staff contacts web page at this link:

The conservation educators also invite caregivers to register for the 2022 Oaks and Acorns program, for ages 2-4 with caregiver. Oaks and Acorns is an inquiry-based education program. It has an emergent curriculum based on children’s evolving interests and the season designed to give children and their caregivers the opportunity to explore nature with guidance and knowledge from ABCA education staff. Registration closes on Dec. 27 for Oaks and Acorns on Tuesdays in 2022: Jan. 4, 11, 18, and 25. Caregivers can also register for 2022 sessions in February (1, 8, 15, 22); March (1, 8, 22, 29); April (5, 12, 19, 26); May (3, 10, 17, 24); and June (7, 14, 21, 28).


Looking for an important way to serve the community? The Board of Directors for the Bluewater Area Family Health Team (BAFHT), located in Zurich, is inviting people to consider becoming a member and serving as a Director.

They are looking for a team player with an enthusiastic interest in sustaining and enhancing primary health services in the community, with a willingness to:

  • Be committed to a vibrant future of the Bluewater Area Family Health Centre
  • Set aside time to prepare for regular Board meetings and sub-committee meetings
  • Actively participate in the Board’s annual evaluation and planning efforts

Orientation and basic governance training are provided to make sure Directors are comfortable and knowledgeable in their role. Previous Board experience is an asset, but not required.


  • Become knowledgeable about BAFHT’s values, mission, programs and performance
  • Be an ambassador for BAFHT and promote its work in the community
  • Ensure financial accountability on behalf of the community and funders
  • Be available to meet once a month, for one to two hours

The Board is comprised of a maximum of nine members. Board members typically serve a term of three years, with the possibility to serve up to two consecutive terms. The BAFHT are currently looking for individuals to replace Directors whose term has ended. A formal election will take place in June at the Annual and General Meeting.

To explore the opportunity to join this knowledgeable and dedicated Board of Directors, please contact: Francine Vanasse, Chair at OR Sandra Shaw, Vice-Chair at


Now that the community is slowly moving toward group activities the creators of bayfieldactivities.infohave completed a recent update and refresh on the website. People are once again invited to refer to this website to learn what activities, from Pickleball to Majong, are happening and when.


The Huron County Museum is home to thousands of artifacts that illustrate the history of both the rural and urban populations of the area. Space dictates what wonderful curiosities the public regularly gets to see when they visit the museum located at 110 North Street in Goderich. But where there is wifi, there is an opportunity to time-travel with over 3,000 pieces of the museum’s collection now available to view online at

“Remember This” highlights items from the collection of the Huron County Museum and Historic Gaol. Items that have shaped the fabric of the county and the people who have lived here since before the county became the county in 1835 up until more recent times.

As the countdown to Dec. 25th has begun in earnest we explore just a few of the Santa Claus collectibles that the Museum has in their possession…


Screen Shot 2021-12-19 at 1.00.21 PM

This is a knitted Santa Claus doll decoration that was made by Gemey Bland. It has a soft body with knitted red suit, red and white jacket, white mitts, black belt and boots and a red bag. There is a detachable, knitted red and white hat. While the body is soft the bearded doll head is made of a hard material. The doll is also wearing gold, wire glasses.

Doug and Gerney Bland acquired a large collection of Santas and Christmas decorations beginning in 1943, the year they were married. They continued collecting for the next 61 years of their marriage.

Many of the Santas were collected while travelling both personally and professionally. Some came from as far away as Honduras and Mexico, as well as many of the southern states including Tennesse, Florida and Texas.

The Blands collection of 300 Santa and Christmas ornaments were donated to the Museum in 2004.


Screen Shot 2021-12-19 at 12.59.26 PM

This is a knitted Mrs. Claus doll decoration that was made by Gemey Bland. It has a soft body with knitted red suit, white apron and mitts, and a red bag. There is a detachable, knitted red and white hat. While the body is soft the doll head is made of a hard material. The doll is also wearing gold, wire glasses and has black boots.


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This is a rolly polly Santa. It is predominately red and highlighted by black trim. His hat is black with a red nob on top.


First card (1843) from Smithsonian Magazine, Dec. 9 2015

Image of the first Christmas Card created in 1843 as it appeared in Smithsonian Magazine. The issue was published Dec. 9, 2015.

2020-0011-171 002 New Years card 1912

New Years Card 1912

2020-0011-197 001 Angels Christmas card 1911

Christmas Card 1911

2020-0011-202 002 Red Poinsettia on Black Christmas card 1912

Christmas Card 1912

2020-0011-178 001 Church Christmas card 1910

Christmas Card 1910

2020-0011-220 001 Bells & Holly Christmas card 1911

Christmas card 1911


During the Christmas season people customarily send cards and holiday messages to family members and friends who live nearby, across Canada and even around the globe. Email has added a whole new dimension to this tradition and sending our greetings is now more convenient than ever.

Before the 1870s, however, greeting cards were unheard of in Canada. In the nineteenth century, cultivated ladies and gentlemen would express their gratitude, good wishes or caring by hand writing a note and having it personally delivered. These one-of-a-kind letters might feature hand-painted text and elaborate drawings; other notes were simpler expressions of the writer’s feelings.

Proper social etiquette during the Victorian period necessitated a response be sent to most correspondence. At this time postal services were rapidly expanding and penny stamps had been introduced, making letter-writing a popular past-time for both the aristocracy and middle class. (Think of the letter writing by Jane Austen, the Brontes or Susannah Moodie for example!)

In 1843, a feisty English gentleman named Sir Henry Cole, became fed up with so much handwriting and asked a London illustrator and friend, John Horsley, to design a greeting card that could be mass produced. It would be mailed to Cole’s family and business associates who numbered in the hundreds. Horsely’s design was printed on stiff cardstock and showed a family gathered at the dinner table and images of London’s poor receiving gifts of food and warm clothing. A printed message wished all “a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.”’

Sir Henry’s simple Christmas card introduced a new format for keeping in touch. In the years that followed, greeting cards surged in popularity and were exchanged throughout Britain, Europe and North America. Postage stamps introduced after 1870 made mail delivery affordable for the average person. New advances in color lithography allowed cards to have embossed designs and multi-colored images. Factories embraced the new technology.

North America’s hugely profitable greeting card industry took off in 1915 when an American entrepreneur named Joyce Hall, mass produced a birthday postcard. Hall’s business venture became today’s juggernaut – Hallmark Industries. By 1925, larger formats and envelopes were replacing postcards. The greeting card business grew exponentially from the 1930s to the 1960s. Even today, it is an evolving industry featuring niche publishers and innovators.

The Bayfield Historical Society has a collection of greeting cards dating from the early 1900s. Examples featured here include vintage Christmas and New Year’s cards from Ann Chapman’s donation from the Penhale and Westlake families.

2020-0011-171 001 New Years card 1912

New Year’s Card 1912

2020-0011-202 001 Red Poinsettia on Black Christmas card 1912

Christmas Card 1912


Dusting of snow.

Dusting of snow…. By Vreni Beeler

Email your photo in Jpeg format to with the subject line Subscriber Photo of the Week. or…Upload your photo to Flickr.

I am looking for the Bayfield that is a delight to the eye – please share photos with a touch of whimsy, beauty, humor or a sense of fun. If you are to include people in your photos be sure to have their permission to publish their picture on-line and also send in their names and where they are from. And don’t forget to tell me who took the photo for proper credit to be issued.

submission section


My husband and I celebrated 30 years married at the end of November. We decided to mark the occasion with family pictures taken by a professional. I think the last time we hired someone to take pics for us was at our wedding. I usually bring out the tri-pod, set the timer and run back and forth in and out of the pics when we do a family group shot, and even that had been awhile, all the way back to 2014 when our granddaughter was about a month old. She’s seven now. So, it was high time. And frankly, it was making me sad when she asked why she wasn’t included in any of the family pictures on display?

If COVID has taught us anything it should be to appreciate and mark the moments we have together as a family. So over Thanksgiving at the farm we posed for some windswept family photos, because it is almost always windy on the farm. I’m sharing one of my favorites with you today. A digital greeting for the season at it were.

Our Family

(Photo by Dianne Brandon)

From our family to yours – Merry Christmas – with wishes for a happy and healthy 2022. – Melody

Ideas and contributions to the Bayfield Breeze are always welcome.

Deadlines for submissions are Sundays at 4 p.m