bayfield breeze issue

The Bayfield BreezeIssue 665 Week 15 Vol 13

April 6, 2022


Issue 665 Week 15 Vol 13
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Sunday, Apr. 21, 2019 was the last time the village had an Easter Egg Hunt. Following the relaxation of some provincial COVID-19 protocols the Bayfield Optiimst Club is bringing the hunt back for 2022. It is set for Apr. 17. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)

It has been a couple of years since children have experienced the thrill of the hunt but it will be back on Sunday, Apr. 17. That’s right, folks – the Easter Egg Hunt hosted by the Bayfield Optimist Club is on for 2022!

Four thousand, molded, chocolate Easter eggs, will be worth their weight in gold to countless youngsters when they are tossed on the lawn in Clan Gregor Square for the annual Easter Egg Hunt. Children will be invited to scramble for the eggs starting precisely at 1 p.m.

Those youngsters who participate in the event are reminded to bring a container to collect their chocolate treasures in and remember the hunt happens very quickly so be sure to be on time.


Anyone who has walked or driven along Bayfield Main Street in the past couple of weeks will have noticed some physical prep work has been done ahead of the start of the Bayfield Main Street Revitalization (BMSR) project.

The Municipality of Bluewater Council awarded the tender for the BMSR construction to Lavis Contracting Co. Limited during the council meeting held on Jan. 24th.

Construction Map

Construction will take place in the commercially zoned areas of Bayfield Main Street North from the Square to Catherine Street, including extension of sidewalks adjacent to the commercially zoned areas of Charles St. (Photo courtesy Municipality of Bluewater)

Construction will take place in the commercially zoned areas of Bayfield Main Street North from the Square to Catherine Street, including the extension of sidewalks adjacent to the commercially zoned areas of Charles St.

It is anticipated that the project will start this month and run until November 2022 with a break from construction activities in July and August to allow for the tourist high season. This break in construction is scheduled to run from June 24 to Sept. 5, with landscaping becoming the focus of the project from Sept. 5 to Nov. 10. The plan is to have the top coat of paving completed in May 2023 with an end to construction work set for May 31, 2023.

The scope of the reconstruction work includes burying of hydro, exposed aggregate sidewalks, road reconstruction including parking spaces and curbs, landscaping, tree planting, street lighting, and replacement and installation of drainage infrastructure including rain gardens.

Communication with the community as the project evolves is a key component and the Municipality of Bluewater will endeavor to provide updates in the Bayfield Breeze on the first and third Wednesdays of every month.

They also welcome people to sign up for the municipality’s “Beautifying Bayfield” newsletter to get all the latest updates!

Other ways of keeping up with Public Works construction news and updates in the Municipality of Bluewater can be found by visiting:



Bayfield Centre for the Arts (BCA) Art Truck travelling studio is ready to head out on the road again this summer. A fundraising campaign has recently been launched to support the vehicle as well as the many other projects provided by the organization. (Photo courtesy BCA)

The Bayfield Centre for the Arts (BCA) is asking people to help fuel the arts in Huron County.

“The BCA is grateful for the support the Bayfield community has shown us over the past two years,” said Leslee Squirrell, president. “With your help we have been able to accomplish some amazing milestones.”

The Centre had more than 400 people participate in 50 BCA classes led by five full time students and they had over 450 people participate in their successful Year of the Barn Exhibit.

“With the support of Lake Huron Chrysler and government partners, our unique Art Truck travelling studio was launched, and the ‘Arts Trails on 21’ driving adventure began,” she said.

In addition, more than 1,500 people now follow the BCA on social media and their posts engage with more than 35,000 people.

“All this during one of the most difficult times in history as pandemic restrictions affected our ability to operate. While we do receive some government grants, as with many arts organizations the bulk of support comes from individuals who believe in our vision,” said Squirrell.

For this reason, they have launched a “Friends and Family Campaign” to ask for financial help.

“Your donation will help us operate the Art Truck, offer visual art workshops and events and move closer to our goal of making Bayfield and Huron County a more vibrant place to live and work,” she noted.

To assist with the campaign, BCA has partnered with Canada Helps, a national agency that has supported over 24,000 partner charities in their 21-year history. Please donate now by going to: One time or monthly donations will receive an instant tax receipt.


Eugene Dufour (Submitted photo)

Eugene Dufour (Submitted photo)

On Friday, Apr. 1st, Eugene Dufour retired after a 42-year career in Hospice Palliative Care.

Dufour, a Bayfield resident, is a clinically trained Individual, Marital and Family Therapist, Bereavement Specialist, Compassion Fatigue Educator and Therapist and Critical Incident Stress Debriefing Facilitator. At the time of his retirement, he was working as a Psychosocial Spiritual Care Clinician with the Huron Perth Palliative Care Outreach Team.

“It has been an honor and privilege to “walk” with over 7,300 individuals that have died and supported their many family members,” he said.

He offered a thank you also to all the First Responders that have allowed him to walk with them as they dealt with so much trauma. “I have received much more than I gave,” he noted.

“Spirit means “breath” and soul means “from the depths of your being” It has been such an honor to hear people share their vital breath that comes from the depth of their being as they approach their death,” he shared.

He went on to say that when someone is given the news that they have a life-threatening illness the focus in Hospice Palliative Care is on living – not so much on dying. It is so sacred to walk with people as they struggle with the themes of meaning, purpose, misery and then mystery as they approach their final stage of growth.

“Thank you to all the clients and family members that have put their trust in me as one of their caregivers. Thank you for the incredible team members that have supported me. One does not work in Hospice Palliative Care alone and I have had many fantastic team members,” he said.

Upon his retirement, he wanted to extend a thank you to his family and friends for their ongoing support.

“Most of all, thank you to Taunya and Mike, Derek and Alison, and Brittany and Alex for your unending support that you provide for your Dad. Thank you for my wonderful grandchildren, Julia and Everly, Dylan and Owen, Aroura and Oaklyn and little one for making retirement so exciting.”

He also wished to acknowledge some special people that have died that are his inspiration – his mother and father as well as Richard and recently, David.

He noted that his partner has taken the fear out of retirement and filled it with so much joy. “Thank you to Grace for all the support and healing you provide as we share our vital breath that comes from the depths of our being.”

“All of you have helped me be a better person, and therapist, and have given me a life with deep meaning and purpose. I am feeling very blessed,” said Dufour.

He added that Bayfield residents have been, and will continue to be, a fantastic support for him.

 “My first retirement project will be to write a book on ‘Complicated Grief’ with all proceeds going to Hospice. COVID-19 created a great deal of Complicated Grief and this will be a book of ‘how to’ deal with this kind of grief. I will be doing all the writing in my writing studio nestled in the woods along the Bayfield River,” he concluded.

Dufour received his Bachelors and Masters degree from King’s College at the University of Western Ontario. He had been working in the area of bereavement and trauma work, hospice palliative care, and the HIV/AIDS movement for the past 30 years. He is a past president of the Ontario Palliative Care Association and the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association. In 2002 Dufour was presented with the Commemorative Medal for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth IIs Golden Jubilee by the Governor General of Canada for his work in hospice palliative care.


Bayfield Arena Community Partners Association (BACPA) and the Bayfield Community Centre Team (BCCT) are gearing up for the return of a highly anticipated spring event. The Bayfield Beer, Wine and Food Festival is back for year six on May 14th.

“The Bayfield Beer, Wine and Food Festival is scheduled back to its normal weekend and now at full capacity,” said Bill Whetstone, co-event chair. “This is our major fundraiser and 100 per cent of the proceeds go back into youth sports, programs, equipment and subsidies at our facility so everyone can play.”

Whetstone went on to say that, just like everyone else, BCCT and BACPA have been hit hard by the pandemic and the organizers are hoping that people will return to support the festival that raises funds for the not-for-profit organization now running the Bayfield Community Centre. He would also encourage newcomers to attend.

“If you’ve never been, consider coming to this great event,” he said. “There are 22 vendors signed up to participate and three bands scheduled to play.”

The event will run from 2-9 p.m. Tickets are $45 per person and will include eight food tickets and eight drink tickets.

Tickets are available now at (Bayfield Beer & Food Festival), at ShopBike Coffee Roasters on Main Street, or by calling Whetstone at 519 955-0682. Check Facebook at @ Bayfield Beer & Food Festival for more information.


The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) is pleased to announce three events for April: “Agriculture and Nature in Harmony”, Apr. 9; “The Woods are Waking Up”, Apr. 16; and Bayfield’s Eighth Annual Earth Day Litter Walk, Apr. 22.

Huron County is the most productive agricultural region in Ontario and also home to beautiful natural areas.  Did you ever wonder how they coexist?  Wayne Cantelon is a third-generation Huron County Farmer.  Nathan Schoelier oversees stewardship and conservation programs for the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority. Join them for “Agriculture and Nature in Harmony” a hike in the Linfield Conservation Area on Saturday, Apr. 9 at 2 p.m.

Participants are asked to meet at 37940 Pavillion Road in Bluewater. The Area is west of the Pavillion Road and Goshen Line intersection, southwest of Varna and north of Zurich.  This is an easy walk through woodlots and open trails for about 2 km and will last about 90 minutes.

“The Woods are Waking Up”, with environmentalist Michele Martin will take place along the Woodland Trail in Bayfield on Saturday, Apr. 16 starting at 11 a.m. Martin has supervised environmental education programs in Toronto, Waterloo and the Seychelle Islands. A regular visitor to Bayfield, the BRVTA is excited to welcome her as a guest hike leader.  As the forest wakes up from a long winter, Martin will show participants what to look for on the Woodland Trail. Those who take part are asked to meet at the David Street trail head. A map can be found at

Bayfield businesses, visitors and residents of all ages are invited to join the BRVTA for their Eighth Annual Earth Day Litter Walk. This annual spring clean-up event will be held on Friday, Apr. 22 starting at 2 p.m. with Clan Gregor Square the base of operations. Participants are asked to wear gloves and brightly colored clothing or borrow one of the BRVTA’s safety vests. Organizers will provide garbage bags and people can choose the area in the Village where they want to pick up litter. Registration will take place from 2-3 p.m. with garbage to be returned by 4 p.m.

“Together we can keep our streets clean, protect the environment from harmful plastics and household waste, and enjoy an afternoon in the great outdoors,” said Ralph Blasting, hike coordinator for BRVTA.

April hikes are open to the public without registration.  Dogs on leash are welcome. For more information on any event, contact hike coordinator Blasting by calling 519 525-3205 or emailing


Muffin (Submitted photo)

Muffin (Submitted photo)

Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines (BFF) has helped hundreds of feral and abandoned cats find their forever homes but many are still waiting.

Muffin is the Adopt-a-BFF cat of the week.

Muffin just arrived at the rescue on Monday, Apr. 4. She was found wandering out in the country where she showed up at a park. She was going from door to door trying to get in and begging for food. Although she was being well fed by some of these neighbors no one was able to keep her. Some of her benefactors checked around to see if they could find her owner but none were found so she was brought to the Rescue.

Volunteers note that Muffin is very sweet and very affectionate. She is also very, very hungry. Once she is checked by the vet, given her shots and is spayed she will be available for adoption.

If Muffin is tops in your book please email for more information.

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.



Although no official report was available from the Municipality of Bluewater at deadline, photographic evidence shows that at least one lane of the new bridge was open to traffic midday on Tuesday, Apr. 5. And by 4 p.m. it was reported that both lanes were open! (Photo by Sally Leitch)


The Municipality of Bluewater is excited to announce the start of the Recreation Master Plan project! The Recreation Master Plan will help guide Council and staff in the provision of recreation (parks, trails, waterfront, programs, culture, and service delivery) over the next 15 years. This will include consideration of cost recovery and revenue generation to ensure the Plan is both implementable and sustainable.

Bluewater has contracted thinc design to manage the project and develop the Plan. In preparing the plan, thinc design will conduct an extensive community and stakeholder engagement process to ensure residents across Bluewater and a broad range of recreation users and service providers (both traditional and non-traditional) are considered in its development.

The project will be completed in four phases: Phase 1 Background Review (March), Phase 2 Community Consultation (April-August), Phase 3 Needs Assessment (May-July) and Phase 4 Draft Master Plan and Implementation Strategy (July-September). In September, the Draft Master Plan will be presented to Council and the community for final input.

The community engagement process has been kick-started online with the launch of the Recreation Master Plan Community Consultation Hub, graciously hosted by Huron County. This is an online space where the community and stakeholders are encouraged to ask questions and share their ideas on all things, recreation! This could include parks, facilities, trails, programs, activities, events and service delivery. The Hub also highlights key milestones and project updates. In mid-April, the Hub will host a link to an Online Survey where community input is integral to the Plan’s successful development.

The people behind the project welcome individual’s thoughts and participation in the process. Please visit the Municipality of Bluewater’s Recreation Master Plan Community Consultation Hub to learn more:


“It’s strange to express a pleasure in looking forward to having a meeting,” said Doug Yeo, representing the Bayfield Agricultural Society (BAS).

But he is very pleased to announce that the first general meeting, in a long while, of the BAS will be held on Monday, Apr.11 at 7 p.m. in the basement of St. Andrew’s United Church, 6 The Square in the village.  Anyone is welcome to attend and be part of the planning of the 166th agricultural fair on Aug.19-22.

“There has not been an in-person meeting where everyone has been invited in quite some time and it is exciting to actually realize there are bodies attached to the heads we have seen on screens over the last two years.  Those who would like to hear what is going on, assist, become a member or share an idea have that opportunity next Monday,” said Yeo.

He concluded with, “Put the fair in your summer plans.”


Hop on the BUS!

The Bayfield Ukulele Society (aka the BUS) is back strumming their stuff at the Bayfield

Community Centre (upstairs) on Wednesday evenings. Anyone who has ever wondered what it’s like to play and sing with a group of enthusiastic players is invited to come to check out the group. With lots of great music from their own BUS songbook, everyone regardless of experience can join in.

For the month of April, they will be running “learn to play the uke” lessons on Wednesday nights from 5:30-6:15 p.m. prior to the regular BUS sessions. Come for a lesson and stay for the jam from 6:30-8:00 p.m. Of course, there is no cost to participate, but small contributions are always welcome to help offset costs.

Anyone who would like to be on the BUS mailing list is asked to please email and be sure to follow them on Facebook. Come on out on Wednesday night and find out what the fun is all about!


Spring has sprung and the Bayfield Garden Club (BGC) is looking forward to resuming activities this year and welcoming new members.

The BGC is a community group most interested in the planting, trimming and tidying of planters and beds in many of Bayfield’s public gardens. They have garden-type activities planned for the summer months and into the fall. They are always looking forward to sharing their gardening stories, best practices and suggestions for future meetings or garden tours. Anyone who has an interest in gardening, flowers, vegetables or the environment may want to consider becoming a garden club member. BGC members are eligible for discounts at many of the local garden centres.

People are encouraged to please mark on their calendars Saturday, May 7 as that is the date the BGC will be holding their annual plant sale in Clan Gregor Square from 9-10:30 a.m. or until sold out. There should be a wide variety of plants, shrubs, herbs and trees for sale. Anyone who is interested in donating plants to the BGC sale is asked to please contact Lori Hill at 519 565-5278 for more information.

Memberships can be purchased for $10 by visiting the BGC booth at the Bayfield Home and Garden Show, Apr. 29 to May 1, or by contacting Nancy Kale via email at Please include name, address and email address.


Are there Lions in your attic?

This year the Bayfield Lions’ Club members are celebrating 75 years of service to the community. In addition to several big projects to commemorate the occasion, they are gathering items to display at an upcoming event. And the community is requested to help!

“Even a quick glance through our history shows many names that began with founding our club in 1947, helped with building the arena (twice), initiated different area programs, and supported community efforts in countless ways. The descendants of most of these people are still in the area,” said Kathy Gray, with the Bayfield Lions’ Club. “For that reason, if you have pictures, videos or stories of Lions or Lioness in your home, please share with me. I will be sure to return your property to you, or you could even scan photos and email with the description.”

Email to share items.


Forget Robins, Tundra Swans and Maple Syrup, nothing signals spring quite like Classic Chocolate and Vanilla Cream Sandwich Cookies! That’s right, Girl Guide cookie season has arrived.

Cookies are available now from the membership for $5 a box. Please note grocery store chains will not have cookies for sale and they will not be available online this campaign – only in-person!

Money raised helps Bayfield Guiding subsidize activities and outings for their membership. Anyone who would like to purchase a box, or two, is asked to contact Melody Falconer-Pounder at 519 525-3830 or email



BFIT Chair Bill Whetstone (left) accepted a cheque for $163 from Ron Keys, representing Bayfield Brewing, from the sale of Snook Stout at a special event held at the brewery on the village’s Main Street on Saturday afternoon. (Submitted photo)

Bayfield Brewing hosted the Bayfield Spring Thaw on Saturday, Apr. 2 to celebrate another year of skating in the Bayfield Arena.

During the event, held on the back garden patio of Bayfield Brewing, $163  was donated to the Bayfield Facility Initiative Team (BFIT) from the sales of their Snook Stout created in honor of hockey player Ryan O’Reilly, captain of the St. Louis Blues.. This program continues with the support of the O’Reilly family. BFIT is in a private-public partnership with the Municipality of Bluewater for the Bayfield Arena and Community Centre. The cheque was presented to BFIT Chair Bill Whetstone from Ron Keys representing Bayfield Brewing.

Participating in the Bayfield Spring Thaw were: Three Sheets Brewing, of Port Elgin; Brewster Mills, of Grand Bend and Bayside Brewing from Erieau. In addition, 2nd Street Light Estate Winery from Central Huron was the guest winery. Adam Cousins of Brussels provided musical entertainment.


The 2022 sale of engraved bricks around the Splash Pad in Clan Gregor Square will close on Saturday, Apr. 16 so now is the time to reserve a brick from the Optimist Club of Bayfield if anyone has been thinking of doing so. 

The engraved pavers in Clan Gregor Square are a reminder of how great area residents and visitors are when it comes to supporting such projects as the Playground and the Splash Pad.

“In Memoriam” stones for loved ones as well as “just because” stones can be ordered with the work being done on site later in 2022 using the same two brick sizes that are already installed around the Splash Pad. The cost of these engraved bricks will be medium, $90; and large, $110. The plan is to have the bricks engraved in late May just prior to opening the Splash Pad.

Anyone with an interest in adding a brick can contact Mike Dixon via email at or by calling 519 955-5254 for further information. 


Knox Presbyterian Church, Bayfield has returned to in-person Sunday Services, with social distancing and masks, as before. They will also continue to offer the 11 a.m. service on ZOOM and YouTube, for those who are unable to attend in-person.

For a ZOOM link to this special service, as well as regular services, please visit the church website: or follow them on Facebook at


Trinity St. James Anglican Church in Bayfield has returned to in-person services on both Sunday and Wednesday mornings. In keeping with COVID-19 protocols, worshippers must pre-register to attend the services that begin at 11 a.m and 10:30 a.m. respectively.

In light of the ongoing pandemic, those wishing to attend will be required to observe public health measures such as, wearing a mask. Pre-register is no longer required. 

Looking ahead, during Easter the congregation of Trinity St. James will be participating in joint services with their sister Parish in Seaforth and the community is invited to attend. 

 The Maundy Thursday service will be held on Apr. 14 at Trinity St. James starting at 6 p.m. followed by the Good Friday service on Apr. 15 at Parish of the Holy Spirit, Seaforth at 10 a.m. Easter Sunday will be observed at Trinity St. James at 11 a.m. on Apr. 17. 


United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is proud to announce the seven recipients of its New Initiative Grants.

“This year we were able to provide a record amount of over $115,000 in funding for grants,” said UWPH Director Governance and Community Impact Megan Partridge. “We are thrilled to be able to support these new approaches and innovations in community services in our community.”

Building Resiliency with Developmental Services Clients — Family Services Perth-Huron: Providing social work supports to those in the developmental sector and their families, caregivers and/or supports in an effort to build stronger communities for these individuals and their families.

Hygiene Health 4 Seniors — Huron County Food Bank Distribution Centre: Providing hygiene products for food bank clients in Huron and Perth (including Stratford and St. Marys) as well as the Mobile Food Bank program to meet a basic need providing a dignified lifestyle to elderly clients.

Hope Kits — John Howard Society of London and District: Providing essential support to aid individuals released from Stratford jail to ensure a safe and successful return to the community, who otherwise may face homelessness.

Prevention and Early-Intervention Models to Serve Youth — Stratford/Perth Shelterlink: Researching and developing prevention and early-intervention models to serve youth from all populations in a culturally appropriate manner.

Stratford Pride Community Centre: Providing a community centre for the local LGBTQ+ community, serving as an information and social hub.

The Next Journey — The Community Table Exeter: Addressing the transportation barrier in accessing essential and non-essential services for individuals living within the Huron Park area.

Finding Your Way — YMCA of Three Rivers: Providing clients with a level of autonomy to identify their needs, where they can bridge the gap and enable access to Settlement, Employment and Language programs and resources to meet needs and make the newcomer journey easier.


2022 03 31 Campaign Announcement 2

United Way Campaign Co-chairs Rob and Leslie Edney celebrate a record breaking 2021 campaign. (Submitted photos)

United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) marked the end of the 2021 annual campaign and announced a record-breaking total of $2,236,904, well over the campaign goal of $2.002 million.

2022 03 31 Campaign Announcement 1

United Way Perth Huron had a record breaking campaign for 2021 – giving the campaign two thumbs up were: (l-r) Ryan Erb, UWPH Executive director: Elizabeth Cooper, manager Community Development, Stratford & Area; and Rob Edney, Campaign co-chair.

“We appreciate the incredible support donors have shown,” said UWPH Executive Director Ryan Erb. “Vulnerable local people are still struggling and we know that with the cost of everything rising, more people need a helping hand. We are committed to continuing our work addressing pressing needs across Perth-Huron.”

“We’re grateful to our communities for supporting UWPH,” said UWPH Campaign Co-chair Rob Edney. “All over Perth-Huron, people really demonstrated their support for United Way’s mission. That’s something I will definitely take away as a memory from the past seven months.”

“Being co-chairs meant we were lucky enough to experience the local love in our communities,” added UWPH Campaign Co-chair Leslie Edney. “That spirit of generosity and caring will help so many get the support they need. Thank you to everyone who gave to UWPH.”

Through a series of Spirit of Community videos, UWPH celebrated the positive impact local donors, workplaces, volunteers, partners and communities had in supporting UWPH’s work across the region; including through community committees in Exeter, Goderich, North Perth, St. Marys, Stratford and Wingham, as well as events such as Coldest Night of the Year. The organization also shared stories of local people who have the chance for a brighter future thanks to UWPH and supported partners and programs. The videos can be viewed at UWPH is also grateful to Famme & Co. Professional Corporation, investStratford, McCutchen & Pearce Professional Corporation and Monteith Ritsma Phillips Law Offices for sponsoring this year’s videos.

As part of UWPH’s celebration of donors, the organization also acknowledged the support of local workplaces. This year’s top five workplace campaigns, including employee giving, corporate matching dollars and event gifts, are: 1- FIO Automotive Canada, 2- Steelcraft, 3- Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance, 4- City of Stratford and 5- Scotiabank.



Cassandra Bryant (Submitted photo)

Gateway Centre of Excellence in Rural Health (Gateway) and the University of Guelph Research Partnership are continuing their research on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on rural healthcare workers and would like to invite healthcare workers, including, personal support workers and health support professionals to participate.

Gateway and the University of Guelph partnered on a project in June of 2022 that sought to identify COVID-19 stressors that rural healthcare workers were experiencing and forms of support to mitigate the stress they experienced. The project’s first phase included a survey completed by 153 respondents in Huron county. This follow-up study will help to continue the research into the impact on the well-being of rural healthcare workers.

Dr. Al Lauzon, professor at the University of Guelph and lead researcher on the project, shares that, “to use a running analogy, the first wave was similar to sprinting where circumstances, information, preparation, the uptake of a large amount of stress and fear occurred in an extremely short period of time. Since then, rural healthcare workers are now running an ongoing marathon.”

This second phase will seek to learn more about how rural healthcare workers in Huron are managing and the impact it has had on mental, physical and emotional health. It will also seek to understand if sources of support at home and at work have changed. Lastly, this research aims to uncover possible experiences, challenges and impacts specific to rural healthcare workers as there appear to be very few studies focused on rural healthcare.

According to the study’s initial findings in terms of stressors, fear was the overriding stressor. Fear for their own health, fear that they might infect loved ones, and the fear that arose from the delivery of services to patients and changing protocols. Other stressors were: increased workload or feeling overworked, constant change, and management and communication challenges in an environment that was continually changing. Furthermore, 65 percent of the respondents indicated these stressors did not exist prior to the pandemic. In addition, 76 percent of respondents indicated that workplace stressors impacted their life outside of work with over 50 percent indicating it impacted their physical and mental health. Ten percent indicated that some of the protocols such as social distancing resulted in them feeling isolated and feeling lonely, especially for those who lived on their own.

Gateway’s President Gwen Devereaux said, “We are extremely happy to partner with Dr. Lauzon and the University of Guelph on this very important project. I hope you are able to help us by taking the time to do the interview. It would be so appreciated.”

They would like to invite healthcare workers, including, personal support workers and health support professionals to participate in this follow-up study. Participation in the study requires 60 minutes of time for a phone interview. The interviews will take place from April to May of this year. Anyone who is interested in participating or would like more information is asked to please contact Casandra Bryant, Ph.D. student and Research Associate, at People can also submit their interests and availability here:


It was noted on March 31, that nearly two weeks after the lifting of many public health measures, some COVID activity indicators are rising; Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) reminds residents to follow measures still in place and to make informed decisions on managing COVID.

Some activity indicators, such as wastewater signals, have plateaued or increased recently.  In the last few days, there has been a re-increase in percent positivity, hospitalizations and ICU admissions after several weeks of plateau or decline.

“This was expected after the lifting of public health measures and we continue to monitor the situation,” said Medical Officer of Health for Huron Perth, Dr. Miriam Klassen.  “Since transmission rates are still quite high, I encourage everyone to make decisions that will best protect themselves and their loved ones; remember that some public health measures remain as well.”

Although there is widespread immunity against severe infection – through a combination of high vaccination rates and previous infections – the following groups remain at higher risk of severe outcomes (long COVID, hospitalization or death) from COVID-19: people of advanced age, those living in congregate settings, people with underlying health conditions, the unvaccinated and the marginalized.

While not a replacement for vaccination, antiviral treatment for COVID-19 is available and can protect against severe outcomes for certain highest risk individuals who are identified early.

To learn about eligibility to receive COVID-19 antiviral treatment and where to get it visit: People can also contact their health care provider or Telehealth at 1-866-797-0000.

Individuals can lower the risk of COVID-19 transmission by continuing to: wash hands often or use alcohol-based hand rub; use high quality masks when necessary to protect vulnerable people or yourself ; limit the number of close contacts indoors; and stay home when sick or symptomatic

Have symptoms? Tested positive? Here’s how to isolate: Individuals who have symptoms of COVID-19 or who test positive for the virus must still isolate.  Anyone who thinks they may have COVID-19, or were exposed to the virus, should visit to learn what to do.

They can also call the toll-free Provincial Testing and Isolation Information Line for answers about COVID-19 testing and isolation guidance. The line can be reached at 1-888-777-0730, and is available from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday to Sunday.

Provincial requirements for face coverings remain in place for several settings, including: public transit, long-term care, retirement homes, other health care settings, including clinics that provide health care services, shelters, jails and congregate care and living settings, including homes for individuals with developmental disabilities.

Also, some people will be required to wear masks for a limited amount of time if they have been exposed to a case of COVID-19 or if they have travelled internationally.

Finally, some individuals are choosing to wear masks due to their personal or loved ones’ risk factors.  Please remain patient and kind, and respect that people’s comfort levels may vary during this time of transition away from public health measures.  Wearing a well-fitted mask in public spaces will continue to lower risk and is especially important when rates of community transmission are high.

Vaccination continues to be the best defense against COVID-19.  HPPH strongly encourages everyone eligible, including those who have previously had COVID-19, to get the doses recommended for them including boosters. Visit to learn more.

HPPH is also seeing people who are requesting a fourth dose but are not eligible. More information on current fourth dose eligibility can be found at

HPPH will continue to offer vaccination clinics in several locations throughout April.  Some clinics are walk-in while others are appointment only. All clinics are family-friendly. Dates and locations are posted at   Vaccines are also still available through pharmacies and primary care providers.

HPPH will soon be receiving a limited supply of Novavax Nuvaxovid, the recently approved protein-based COVID-19 vaccine. Individuals who are eligible and interested in receiving this vaccine can call COVID Intake at 1-888-221-2133 Ext 3299 to be placed on a waitlist.  Appointments will be booked once the supply is confirmed.

Novavax Nuvaxovid has been approved by Health Canada for adults 18+ who: have not received any doses of the COVID-19 vaccine; have allergies to mRNA vaccines or who are looking to receive a non-mRNA vaccine. More information about Novavax is available at


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 percentage of people vaccinated please visit:


It was announced on Apr. 1, that Ontario is investing nearly $40,000 that will enrich the lives of Huron – Bruce seniors and recognize their significant contributions to our province.

This year’s Seniors Community Grant project will help Ontario’s Seniors to stay fit, active, healthy and in their communities.

Riding recipients include:

The Municipality of Brockton will receive $14,478 to improve cognitive health and abilities for those aged 55 and over through physical fitness, healthy eating, and keeping their minds active through social interaction, seminars and creative activities.

The MacKay Centre for Seniors in Goderich will receive $25,000 to enhance coping skills needed to navigate post-COVID reconnections building on their lived experience through the delivery of an education and skills-building program to isolated older adults so they can stay active and socially engaged.

“These projects will make a big difference in the lives of older Ontarians here in Huron-Bruce,” said Lisa Thompson, MPP for Huron-Bruce. “They offer meaningful opportunities for older adults to safely take part in local life and keep connected to friends, family and the community.”

“Our government is proud to invest in local organizations which are well-positioned to meet the needs of seniors in their community,” said Raymond Cho, minister for Seniors and Accessibility. “Seniors Community Grants provide tremendous enjoyment and personal value to older Ontarians.”

The Seniors Community Grants Program provides funding ranging from $1,000 up to $25,000 for local projects. Ontario’s Seniors are the province’s fastest growing demographic, and by 2023, there will be 3 million Ontarians over the age of 65.


Mitchell Rhodes (Submitted photo)

Mitchell Rhodes (Submitted photo)

United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is proud to announce Mitchell Rhodes as the Director of the new Community Renewal Company (CRC).

“We’d like to welcome Mitchell to the UWPH team,” said UWPH Executive Director Ryan Erb. “There’s already been so much work behind the scenes, making local connections and sharing our vision of the CRC. Mitchell brings a wealth of experience developing the kinds of projects we have in mind and we welcome his expertise and vision.”

“I’m pleased to join UWPH and work with Ryan and the team,” added Rhodes. “I have family ties in Stratford and after years working on affordable housing I’m happy to live here and build this collaboration. UWPH’s vision for the CRC as a way of helping keep communities affordable and act as a counter-balance to the prevailing continued rise in housing costs is compelling. I look forward to getting to know the local communities better and collaborating on some exciting projects.”

Part of the UWPH team since January, Rhodes’ previous position was as the Director of Coordinated Access for Halifax and Rural Nova Scotia for the Affordable Housing Association of Nova Scotia; where he worked within the federal Reaching Home program, which is under the umbrella of the National Housing Strategy. Rhodes has lived and worked in Ontario, BC, Quebec, Nova Scotia and Rwanda. He also lived in Sweden where he obtained a master’s degree in Sustainable Development and has two undergraduate degrees in Honours Business Administration from the University of Windsor and Economics from the University of Western Ontario.

The CRC’s initial focus is developing and operating affordable rental supply, supportive housing options and innovation in social service access and delivery, including community hubs. Chief among the projects in the pipeline is the Listowel Access Centre (LAC). Components under consideration for the LAC include a new library retaining the Carnegie section of the building, a community hub for social services and 40 rental apartment units. The CRC will also play a critical role in the community development ecosystem, supporting and building relationships between non-profit service providers and their supporters and advocates. For more, visit


The Ausable Bayfield and Maitland Valley conservation authorities say that saturated soil conditions are making some bluff areas along Lake Huron prone to collapse.

Recent rainfall and snowmelt have saturated the land and softened the clay till bluffs. This makes them more unstable. It can lead to slope failures along the shoreline and increased gully erosion.

Erosion along the bluff is a concern because it places structures and life at risk. Erosion at the bottom of the bluff destabilizes the bluff and leads to top-of-bluff recession. Erosion at the top of the bluff may occur in one large failure or in many smaller failures.

The two local conservation authorities are encouraging people to stay away from top-of-bluff areas in case there has been any movement of the lake bank. In some cases, there may be a delay between erosion at the toe (bottom) of the bluff and subsequent bluff failure.

“Bluff failures are very unpredictable in terms of when they will happen or how extensive they will be,” said Geoff Cade, Water and Planning manager at Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA). “We are encouraging people to be very careful and not get too close to the edge of the bluff.”

Conservation authority staff are discouraging residents from walking along those shoreline areas where a beach is accessible below bluffs. Injury or loss of life could occur if a bluff collapses and beach users are below that bluff failure.

ABCA and Maitland Valley Conservation Authority (MVCA) recommend that landowners check their shoreline property, when possible, to look for signs of erosion. Bent or leaning trees and a lack of vegetation on the slope are among the signs that the property may be in an area of erosion. The ABCA and MVCA can provide landowners with mapping indicating the erosion risk in their area. If anyone sees a significant crack running parallel to the shoreline, they are asked to contact their local conservation authority. A crack running parallel to the shoreline is one of the signs a failure may occur.

Please call ABCA at 519 235-2610 or MVCA can be contacted by email at or by phone at 519 357-6670.

Visit or to learn more.


Community members are invited to attend an information session to learn which local organizations are currently working to provide support to the people of Ukraine, what supports are currently available to newcomers who might be arriving from Ukraine, and how local residents can contribute to these efforts.

The community information sessions are being organized by the Huron County Library and Huron County Immigration Partnership.

“Many community members have indicated they would like to know how they could help and prepare,” said Kristin Crane of the Huron County Immigration Partnership. “These information sessions will highlight current local actions, and provide residents with information on how they may be able to contribute, as the needy arrive locally.”

The locations, dates and times for four information sessions are as follows: Exeter Public Library – Apr. 12, Seaforth Public Library – Apr. 13, and Virtual Session – Apr. 10, all three sessions at 7-8:30 p.m.; and Alice Munro Public Library in Wingham – Apr. 14, 2-3:30 p.m.

Pre-registration is required and can be done online by visiting:

To learn more about the work of the Huron County Immigration Partnership, visit:


Now that the community is slowly moving toward group activities the creators of have 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.

Men’s fashion has certainly evolved over the decades; this week we take a closer look at some of the hats and accessories that comprise the Museum’s collection…


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This is a pasteboard box for a man’s top hat. The interior and exterior is made of white paper. The box corners are rounded and the hat fits snugly inside. The close-fitting lid is attached with a short pink ribbon.

There is a gummed label on the lid that bears the name “H. J. A. McEwan” in pencil; other details are illegible. The label is printed white on black and reads: “W. & D. Dineen, Hatters & Furriers, Toronto”. Printed on the side of lid is written “Christy’s London”. Hand written in ink is “6.50”. Also written on the outside of the box is “Manufactured expressly for W. & D. Dineen & Co. Ltd. Corner of Yonge & Temperance Streets, Toronto”.

This hat box, and the top hat (top right), belonged to Hugh John MacEwan who lived on Bruce St. in Goderich. He served as the Mayor of Goderich from 1925 to 1930 and again from 1935 to 1940. He wore the hat for special functions as Mayor. He was an innovator and investor and was an executive for the West Shore Railway.


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This is a man’s black top hat. It is made with fur, possibly beaver. The rigid crown curves outward slightly from the base. The rigid brim turns upward along each side with a rigid inward-turned edge. The back of the brim turns down farther than the front. The hat has a black grosgrain band, which is one-inch wide and is tied in a flat bow on the left side. The soft brown leather interior headband is stamped on the left side in gold: “Christy’s London”. The crown is lined with silk. The hat size is 6 3/4.

The hat was owned by Hugh John MacEwan, a mayor of Goderich during the 1920s and 30s.


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This is a black felt bowler-style/derby hat with a black grosgrain hat band. The inside of the hat has a leather band with the “Christys’ London” logo stamped on the side. Underneath the leather band is a piece of paper that reads “Mary Jervis / Holmesville / Ontario”. There are air holes formed in a star-shape on the crown of the hat for ventilation.

This derby hat belonged to Percy Walters of Benmiller, ON.




In early January of 2020, Bayfield residents Justyne Chojnacka, travelling with her partner, Wally Racicot, embarked on a 119-night World Wonders Cruise, departing Los Angeles aboard the magnificent Viking Sun. This once-in-a-lifetime cruise was meant to visit over 50 ports in New Zealand, Australia, SE Asia, India, the Middle East and Europe.

However, the rise of a global pandemic ensured that this magnificent holiday did not go according to plan but evolved into a rather interesting adventure that Justyne herself shared with readers back in April of 2020. This story was first published in Issue 561** of the Bayfield Breeze with a follow-up on how the Canadians did finally make their way back home in Issue 562*

On Feb. 1st, 2022, the Bayfield Breeze received an email from Justyne. She wanted to share with readers that the couple is now once again sailing the world on their return trip that was interrupted by COVID in 2020. (Visit Issue 657 for more details.) At that point, they had been on the ship for about six weeks and were Omicron free as both crew and passengers were taking daily COVID tests. Their original itinerary was updated in order to allow the passengers to be allowed off of the ship taking them along South America to Cape Horn instead of French Polynesia; Australia and New Zealand. About a month later, Justyne provided an update of their travels as featured in Issue 661.

This week, the story behind the sailing adventure of a lifetime continues…

On March 9, the ship docked overnight in Valletta, Malta where it would spend a couple of days providing ample opportunity to tour this UNESCO World Heritage Site. A highlight for the pair occurred on March 11 when the couple attended a concert at St. Paul’s Cathedral in the old fort city of Mdina.

This was the first occasion that they noticed NATO jets flying overhead patrolling the Mediterranean Sea, no doubt a reaction to the war in Ukraine. Justyne shared that their ship would continue to sail as long as it was deemed safe.

“We have ten Ukrainian crew members and the ship’s passengers raised some extra funds to help them to bring their children to a safe country. We have learned that some churches are trying to sponsor children or find families willing to take the children,” she said.

Prior to arriving in Malta, the Viking Star took the travellers to the 10 volcanic islands that comprise the archipelago of Cape Verde, with a stop in Mindelo. And then it was off to Madeira, Portugal, known as the Garden Island for its rich fertile volcanic soil and good year-round climate. It was there that they learned about the island’s hydraulic watering system known as levadas, which date back to the 15th century and are still used for irrigation today. Dug into the steep hillsides the 2,170 km (1,350 miles) of levadas provide water from the mountainous areas to the more fertile yet dryer land below.  On this island tour, they also stopped at the Cabo Girao Skywalk, a glass platform that offers incredible views from the world’s second highest sea cliff. Justyne feels that Madeira would be the perfect place for a winter getaway.

The Viking Star also made a stop in Seville, Cádiz in Spain, where they toured the Andalusian countryside and its rich history including the lighthouse at Cape Trafalgar which marks the location of the 1805 naval Battle of Trafalgar.

“On March 3rd, we were in Gibraltar where our 2019 cruise ended due to COVID-19 almost to the day! Now we had a chance to see it,” said Justyne. “A British territory since 1713 it has a long history. Within the Rock are a series of tunnels that were dug by defending British troops during the Great Siege 1779-1783 and later by Allied troops during World War Two. The tunnels are used today for the military. For me it was good to see the General Wladyslaw Sikorski Memorial.”

The Sikorski Memorial in Gibraltar commemorates the 1943 Gibraltar B-24 crash that occurred on July 4, 1943 which caused the death of the General who was at the time the commander-in-chief of the Polish Army and Prime Minister of the Polish government in exile.

They also had the pleasure of visiting St. Michael’s Cave marvelling at its colorfully lit stalactites and stalagmites. They learned that the largest chamber, the Cathedral Cave, hosts music events due to its superior acoustic qualities. Before departing Gibraltar, they also took a six-minute cable car ride, 412 m above sea level to see the playful Barbary Apes roaming freely.

March 4 found them visiting the cities of Granada and Malaga in Spain.

“Malaga is one of the oldest cities, full of Moorish architecture and Christian details. It is the city of Pablo Picasso. It was here we got to see a performance of Flamenco dancing – what an exuberant show it was!” she said.

The Viking Star then cruised along the Mediterranean Sea for a day prior to stopping in Palma De Mallorca on March 6.

“It rained here, only a half day, but we found it to be a very beautiful island. Remnants of past civilizations are plentiful.” she said. “I found a monument to Frédéric Chopin as this is where he died.”

Other highlights of Palma included seeing the massive La Seu Cathedral and the Royal Palace of Almudaina.

On March 8, the Viking Star arrived in Sardinia, Italy where the farmland has lush vineyards blanketing its hillsides.

“Cork oak trees are prevalent too. Cork is used for bottling wine and olive oil as well as for bags, shoes and belts,” said Justyne.

Around March 12, they visited the Greek islands of Corfu and Crete and then stopped in Katakolo, Greece to see Olympia – the classical birthplace of the modern Olympic Games.

Two days were spent in Venice, Italy where they got to see St. Mark Square and as is the custom for tourists they also enjoyed a gondola ride along the Grand Canal.

And then it was off to see four of the independent countries that once were part of the former Yugoslavia.

“They were all beautiful and interesting,” said Justyne. “Croatia reminded us of today’s Ukraine, now at war, since they suffered a similar conflict in 1991 and although they have rebuilt since the evidence of the war is still there. We hope the war will stop before more innocent lives are lost.”

As of March 27, the couple has been on their cruise for about three months, and so far, their itinerary has stayed the course. In Justyne’s most recent email, they were on their way to Saudi Arabia via the Suez Canal.

So, where in the world are Justyne and Wally now, some of our readers may be wondering? Well, a quick search of the internet shows that as of Apr. 5th, they are now cruising the Red Sea at eight knots with sunshine and a gentle breeze and temperatures reaching 35C. May they have nothing but smooth sailing as their adventures continue – we will share more missives should they send us future electronic postcards in the coming days…

** To access these Issues click on the Archives button at the top of this page and type “561” or “562” into the Search and press enter. The Issues should appear for your access.




The Lion in Winter…By Sally Leitch

Submit Your photo

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.


Image of Melody Falconer-Pounder


Melody Falconer-Pounder

My step-daughter and I have decided to go on a little adventure over the Easter weekend. We’re going on the hunt for some of the Little Free Library locations in Bluewater, Central Huron and Goderich.

Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization founded in 2009 and based in Hudson, Wisconsin. Their mission is “to be a catalyst for building community, inspiring readers, and expanding book access for all through a global network of volunteer-led Little Free Libraries”. Now I gather lots of people may follow the Little Free Library concept but they may have chosen not to register with the organization so for that reason I need a little help in finding some of our local ones.

If you know of the location of a few, or maybe have one yourself, please send me an email. I’m thinking a tour of these little literary wonders would make a fun feature for the future! – Melody

Ideas and contributions to the Bayfield Breeze are always welcome.
Deadlines for submissions are Sundays at 4 p.m.