bayfield breeze issue

The Bayfield BreezeIssue 706 Week 04 Vol 14

January 18, 2023


Issue 706 Week 04 Vol 14
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About 20 people took part in a walk through the village led by historian David Yates on Saturday, July 9, 2022. Participants followed the Heritage Trail through the Village to Pioneer Park and returned to Main Street . A similarly themed hike is being organized for July 8th, 2023 by the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association. (Photo by Jack Pal)

The Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA) is pleased to announce its 2023 hiking season.  Twenty-four hikes and events are planned from now through October.

Starting this week through Feb. 25, Guided Winter Walks will be offered every Saturday at 10 a.m. at the Varna Nature Trails. Participants are asked to meet at the Varna Community Centre, 1 km west of Varna, to hike the Taylor Trail and Mavis’ Trail.  These walks will be between 1 km and 3.5 km and last an hour or less, depending on the group and the weather.

This year’s hikes include the fourth annual International Women’s Day Hike, the third annual Indigenous People’s Day Hike, and the first annual Pride Hike.

The BRVTA will also support the Earth Day Village Litter Walk, the Terry Fox Run, and the Candlelight Walk in support of Huron Hospice.

Guest guides George Ebers, Jordan George, Dave Gillians, Denise Iszczuk, Michele Martin, Dave Pullen, Robert Tremain, and David Yates will offer their expertise on topics from wildflowers to Admiral Bayfield.

All hikes are free and open to the public without pre-registration, unless noted otherwise.  The schedule is subject to change, so always check for updates in the Bayfield Breeze, the BRVTA Facebook page, and the Municipality of Bluewater events calendar, or contact hike coordinator Ralph Blasting at 519 525-3205 or

It should be noted that the Woodland Trail is closed twice a year during hunting season. In 2023 those dates will be Nov. 6-12 and Dec. 4-10.

A list of upcoming hikes and BRVTA activities for 2023:

  • Jan. 21 and 28, Feb. 4, 11, 18 and 25: Winter Hikes, 10 a.m., Varna Nature Trails
  • March 4: International Women’s Day Hike, 10 a.m., Woodland Trail, Bayfield.
  • March 18: “Species at Risk” with Denise Iszczuk, Ausable-Bayfield Conservation Authority,
  • 10 a.m., Morrison Dam Conservation Area.
  • Apr. 1: Candlelight Memorial Walk, 7 p.m., Taylor Trail, Varna, for Huron Hospice. (Rain Date Apr. 2)***
  • Apr. 22: “Woods and Watershed” with Michele Martin, 9 a.m., Clan Gregor Square, Bayfield
  • Apr. 22: Ninth Annual Earth Day Village Cleanup, 10:30 a.m., Clan Gregor Square, Bayfield.
  • May 6: Wildflower Hike with Dave Pullen and Robert Tremain, 10 a.m., Bannockburn Tract***
  • May 20: 8:30am: Birdwatching Hike with George Ebers, 8:30 a.m.,  Windmill Farm***MO
  • June 3: First Annual Pride Hike, LGBTQAI2S+ especially welcome, 10 a.m., Woodland Trail  June 17: National Indigenous Peoples Day Hike with Jordan George, 10 a.m, Varna Nature Trails
  • July 8: Admiral Bayfield Walk with David Yates, 10 a.m., Heritage Trail, Bayfield.
  • July 22: Hullett Marsh Guided Tour, 10 a.m., Hullett Marsh Conservation Area
  • Aug. 12: Scavenger Hunt – all kids welcome, 10 a.m., Varna Nature Trails
  • Aug. 26: Family Evening Hike, 7 p.m., Woodland Trail
  • Sept. 9: Naftel’s Creek Conservation Area with Michele Martin, 10 a.m.
  • Sept. 17: Terry Fox Run, 10 a.m. start, at Clan Gregor Square gazebo, Bayfield.
  • Oct. 14: Fall Colors Hike, 10 a.m. Lobb Trail
  • Oct. 21: Historic Cemetery Tour with Dave Gillians, 10 a.m.  Bayfield Cemetery***MO
  • Oct. 28: Harvest Hike in support of Bayfield Food Bank, 10 a.m., Varna Nature Trails

*** No dogs please.

MO – BRVTA members only; limit 20. Pre-register by emailing



The Helen MacLeod II was built by Louie MacLeod (1888-1961), a third generation of the family who had immigrated from the Isle of Lewis, Hebrides, Scotland. (Photos courtesy Bayfield Historical Society)

After 25 years and with some false starts, the Bayfield Historical Society (BHS)  is hoping to give the Helen MacLeod II project one last try with a twist on the original intent. They are looking for former committee members and new recruits with an interest in preserving this historic schooner for future generations to discover. The first meeting regarding the project is set for Jan. 24.

The Helen MacLeod II (HMII), a 38 foot wooden schooner, was built and launched in Bayfield in 1926. The HMII was built by Louie MacLeod (1888-1961), a third generation of the family who had immigrated from the Isle of Lewis, Hebrides, Scotland.

When Louie’s health declined the boat was sold and left for Detroit. After changing hands and uses, it was acquired by the Great Lakes Schooner company of Toronto who donated the schooner to Bayfield in 1997.

The average lifespan of a wooden boat is anywhere from 10 to 25 years. The HMII was retired after 70 years. She sits in a shed north of Bayfield – still large and imposing but with visible rotting and decay.

The BHS formed a committee in 1997 with the purpose of “restoring/reconstructing” this historic boat.

“After several starts and stops; many good times and some flat times, we have come to the conclusion that the original idea will not fly. Previous committees have also talked about displaying the old HMII either on a moveable trailer or in a stationary building. Another issue will be where could something this large be permanently displayed?” said Ruth Gibson, past president of the BHS.

Over 25 years (and with investment and interest), BHS has $49,000 in a reserved account for the Helen MacLeod II Project.

BHS is in the process of forming a committee including former committee members as well as people who would have an interest in this project. The object of the committee will be to do costing and establish a realistic plan to complete the project without needing fundraising or future expenses.

“We have six people signed, but if you have missed prior notices and would like to join the group, please email,” said Gibson.

The first meeting regarding the project will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 24 at 2 p.m. It will be held at the Bayfield Archives and Heritage Centre located at 20 Bayfield Main Street North.


Yesterday, Jan. 17,  would have been actress Betty White’s 101st birthday and marked the second annual Betty White Challenge.

In 2022, the Betty White Challenge was launched in her memory as the comedian died on Dec. 31st, 2021 just shy of her 100th. The challenge encouraged people to donate to an animal shelter or local rescue in their community to honor White, who was also an amazing advocate for animals. People responded and the #bettywhitechallenge proved very beneficial for animal-centric organizations such as Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines (BFF).

Although the official challenge day was yesterday people can still donate to BFF in honor of the Golden Girl! Thoughtful animal lovers in the community are invited to donate $5 (or more) in her memory which will help to rescue, house, feed, rehabilitate and rehome cats and kittens.


Andy (Submitted photo)

E-transfers can be sent to the Rescue’s email (listed below) 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.

BFF has so many wonderful cats and kittens looking for their forever families right now.

Andy is the Adopt a BFF cat of the week.

He is about as adorable as they come. He was found alone, wet and very cold just after the Christmas Blizzard.

The lovely family who found him has a pretty full house with two cats, a dog and three children but they just couldn’t leave him outside! Attempts to find an owner were unsuccessful and much as they fell in love with this cat they knew in their hearts they couldn’t keep him. It was a tearful surrender but they know because of his outgoing and loving personality he will bring much joy to whoever chooses to adopt him. He is now at the Rescue and needs to find his forever home.

If you can’t resist Andy you can grant his adoption wish by contacting BFF via email at 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.


People often ask if they can add an engraved brick to the path around the Splash Pad in Clan Gregor Square and members of the Optimist Club of Bayfield are pleased to announce that there is further opportunity to have a name added to the circle in 2023.

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.


The Bayfield Community Centre is the new home of the Bayfield Playgroup organized by the Ontario Early Years Child and Family Centre. (Submitted photo)

The Ontario Early Years Child and Family Centre is now hosting the Bayfield Playgroup at the Bayfield Arena and Community Centre, 4 Jane Street, on Thursday mornings.

The sessions are held from 10-11:30 a.m. and are free to all families/caregivers with infants to children aged six years.

The Playgroup offers indoor, outdoor and virtual program options as well as telephone and email support for parents and caregivers. In addition to the program being welcoming, fun and interactive, they provide parents with ideas of activities to do at home to enhance their child’s development.

Pre-registration is recommended by emailing or calling 519 482-8505. To learn more visit or follow them on Instagram and Facebook at @HuronEarlyON.


Calling all Bayfield area tweens and teens! The Bayfield Public Library (Bayfield Branch)  is challenging youth ages 12 to 18 to read at least one book a month from January to June 2023 for a chance to win some amazing prizes. Are you up for the challenge?

For every book a youth reads, their name will be entered to win one of the prizes listed below. Draws will be made at the end of the program. The Bayfield Branch has a tracking form which can be picked up from the branch during regular hours, or can be completed by downloading a form at: Bayfield Teen Reading Challenge Form.

Looking for ideas of what to read? Explore the Huron County Library’s online catalogue or speak with branch staff who are eager to offer reading recommendations.

Prizes for the Bayfield Branch reading challenge include, but are not limited to: $250 gift card from Forever Furniture; $25 gift card from The Village Bookshop; four, $25 gift cards to The Village Bookshop from Pioneer Park; four, Kids Kraft Workshop gift cards from Crichet Handmade Designs; a selection of graphic novels from Friends of Bayfield Library; selection of gift cards from the Bayfield Optimist Club; Hyacinth Bulb kit from Huron Ridge Greenhouses; Sherpa blanket from the Little Inn of Bayfield; selection of books from the Bayfield Agricultural Society;

handmade products from the Bayfield Lavender Farm and Great Lakes Glory; Bayfield booklets from the Bayfield Historical Society; and swag from the Virtual High School & Bruce Power.

All completed tracking forms must be returned to the Bayfield Branch or emailed to  by the contest deadline of Wednesday, June 28.

Friends of Bayfield Library

Colleen R. Maguire

Colleen Maguire (Submitted photo)

The Friends of Bayfield Library (FOBL) and Huron County Library are pleased to co-sponsor the first guest speaker in the 2023 Virtual Saturdays at the Library program.

All are welcome to join the ZOOM meeting on Saturday, Jan. 28 at 10:30 a.m. The guest speaker will be local historian and genealogist Colleen Maguire, whose topic will be “The Man Under the Black Cloth – the Private Life of R.R. Sallows”. In this session, Maguire will pull away the black photographer’s cloth to reveal details about the private life of Sallows – where he lived, who his family was, and what they were like.

Maguire has spent many years researching the life of Reuben R. Sallows, and she was instrumental in establishing the Reuben R. Sallows Gallery at the Goderich Public Library in 2001. Maguire is a recipient of both the Governor General’s History Award for Community Programming and the Huron Arts and Heritage Network’s Heritage Award.

Anyone wishing to participate in the ZOOM meeting is asked to pre-register by clicking on the link provided on the FOBL website:


It is that time of year! Time to consider obtaining or renewing a 2023 Bayfield Historical Society (BHS) membership.

This yearly membership allows BHS to continue to keep the doors open and helps them maintain a safe storage space to preserve the many wonderful Bayfield artifacts and archival records.  In addition, the fee helps support the current digitization project, which ultimately will be populated with all of the precious treasures and stories of Bayfield.

The membership fee is $20 for an Individual and $30 for Family.  Please either send a cheque or e-transfer using the information provided below.

As a thank you for the support, all members will receive a 10 per cent discount on BHS books.  Please also note that only paid members are allowed to vote on BHS business.

Cheques for memberships may be sent to the Bayfield Historical Society and Archives at 20 Main St. N., PO Box 161, Bayfield, ON,  N0M 1G0.  Alternatively, E-transfers for memberships may be emailed to attention Deborah Curran, memberships.

Donations are also gratefully accepted and can also be sent by cheque or E-transfer. BHS is a registered non-profit and receipts for Income Tax purposes on donations over $20 will be provided.


Members of the Bayfield Tree Project (BTP) would like to remind village homeowners that now is the time to think about Spring planting.

“This is the time of year when the Municipality of Bluewater starts to order trees for the upcoming planting season,” said Sondra Buchner, on behalf of the BTP.

Anyone who does not have a tree planted on their property’s municipal frontage (boulevard) and is interested in having one planted should contact the Municipality as soon as possible.

The easiest way to request a tree planting and to learn more about this process is by visiting: Bluewater Tree Planting. The deadline for requesting a tree planting is Feb. 24.


The Friends of Bayfield Library (FOBL) extend a warm welcome to all to attend their  “Coffee & Chat” program in the Bayfield Public Library Meeting Room. The “Coffee & Chat” group meets every Tuesday until the end of March.

Participants can enjoy a hot cup of coffee while engaging in conversation with other community members. The conversation is neutral and inclusive with an endless list of interesting topics for discussion.

The session runs from 2-3:30 p.m..

This is a great way for newcomers to meet new people, learn about the village, and share ideas. Seasoned villagers are also very welcome. There is no need to register for this program. Just show up and be prepared for some lively discussion!


2022-01-12 ChemoPharm Contract Signing

A construction contract signing was held on Jan. 12 to mark the start of creating a new Chemotherapy Unit and Pharmacy at the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) Stratford General Hospital site. Taking part in the signing were l-r: HPHA President & CEO, Andrew Williams; Director Diagnostics, Regional Pharmacy & Chemotherapy, Ryan Itterman; Supervisor Regional Pharmacy & Chemotherapy, Becky Lau; Dr. Janis MacNaugton; Dr. Janis Nicholson; Stratford General Hospital Foundation Executive Director, Andrea Page; Stratford General Hospital Foundation In Our Hands Campaign Co-Chair, Paul Roulston; SEM Construction President, Amir Shenouda; Manager Facilities Management Projects, Francesco Sabatini; and Board Chair, Steve Hearn. (Submitted photo)

It’s not often a stroke of a pen plays a role in improving healthcare, but several were put to good use signing a construction contract bringing a new Chemotherapy Unit and Pharmacy a step closer to completion at the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) Stratford General Hospital site. The event held on Jan. 12, marked the official construction start of a renovation project which will have an impact on thousands of chemotherapy patients along with hospital inpatients that rely on HPHAs pharmacy to provide superior medication management.

The signing of the construction contract takes the project from years of planning, input from staff, patients and patient partners to the next level, from paper (blue prints) to reality. This $13 million project is part of the Stratford General Hospital Foundation’s “In Our Hands” campaign.

“The Stratford General Hospital Foundation launched the In Our Hands campaign at an event attended by 150 donors and a special countdown with astronaut Dr. Roberta Bondar in June 2022 with a goal of $30 million,” said Paul Roulston, In Our Hands Campaign co-chair. “Right now, through incredible generosity of donors we are at $23 million in cash and pledges. Since we receive no funding from the provincial government for medical equipment, every dollar vested into essential equipment and funding for special projects like the Chemotherapy and Pharmacy renovation has been given by those who care about our hospital, our patients and our healthcare team.”

There are currently more than 2,000 patient visits for chemotherapy at the HPHA Stratford General Hospital each year. The Chemotherapy Unit is an integral part of cancer care for patients in Stratford and area, providing top-notch care closer to home, thereby eliminating the anxiety of receiving treatment in an unfamiliar setting, reducing the time and expense of travel, and providing the opportunity to develop close relationships and a support system with other local residents.

“The Chemotherapy program has experienced steady growth in patient volumes and these trends are expected to continue,” said Ryan Itterman, director Diagnostics and Regional Pharmacy & Chemotherapy. “Co-location of the Chemotherapy and Pharmacy programs will help ensure efficient use of resources, specifically in sterile preparation locations and delivery of chemotherapy medications.”

Expected occupancy for the Chemotherapy Unit and Pharmacy is Spring/Summer 2024. A simulated virtual tour is available on the In Our Hands campaign website at

“We can never say thank you enough! Our donors have always been there for us and we know that they will help us raise the remaining $7 million to help make an incredible difference at our hospital,” added Andrea Page, Stratford General Hospital Foundation Executive director. “From new ultrasounds, to the completion of the Chemotherapy and Pharmacy renovation; a new MRI to new youth mental health initiatives, every dollar counts and we can’t do it without our community.”

Those interested in contributing to the In Our Hands campaign can visit the Stratford General Hospital Foundation’s website at or contact the foundation office directly at 519 272-8210 Ext. 2626 or



Mary-Ann and Dylan Van Den Assem, co-owners of Fortress Fencing in Blyth are now certified living wage employers. They are shown here with Lisa Harper (right) from United Way Perth-Huron. (Submitted photo)

Fortress Fencing in Blyth is the latest Huron County business to certify as a living wage employer.

“If people need to work for a living, then they should have a wage they can actually live on,” said Dylan and Mary-Ann Van Den Assem, co-owners of Fortress Fencing. “A living wage benefits the entire community as a person’s money tends to be spent in their community.”

“We would like to thank Fortress Fencing for certifying,” added Ryan Erb, Executive director of United Way Perth-Huron. “By committing to the well-being of their employees through paying a living wage, Dylan and Mary-Ann are helping address the pressing issue of unaffordable living, building an even stronger local community.”

Based on a 35-hour work week, the new Perth-Huron living wage, or $20.70, was calculated using local data and considered the living expenses of a weighted average of family types including a family of four, a single mother supporting a seven-year-old child and a single adult, once government transfers and deductions were taken into account. Everyday expenses in the calculation included food, housing, utilities, clothing, childcare and transportation. For more information about Perth-Huron’s living wage, visit


January is National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, and the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth is pleased to announce it is launching a nation-wide campaign reminding people that the organization is the First Link® to Support, Knowledge and Community. The Alzheimer Society is the first place to turn to for support, care, knowledge, expertise, and referrals.

They have many events taking place throughout the month! They have programs that will provide answers to the questions people may have including:

  • On the first Wednesday of each month there are opportunities to learn about support and services offered at their ZOOM Information session called, “Your Journey of Support Starts Here”.
  •  Meet public education coordinators at local libraries across Huron and Perth Counties throughout the Month of January.
  • Tune into their “Dementia Basics” sessions on Monday afternoons or evenings to learn about Warning Signs, Types of Dementia, Brain Changes and Communication Tips.
  • Join their virtual “Memory and Aging Program™” for information about memory changes that are associated with normal aging and strategies to support memory function.
  • Attend free awareness month movies at the Huron County Museum, 110 North Street in Goderich. “The Artist’s Wife” will be shown at 7 p.m. on Jan. 26 and 2 p.m. on Feb. 2.  “The Cuban” will be offered at 2 p.m. on Jan. 26 and 7 p.m. on Feb. 2.
  • They also have Awareness Displays at North Perth Public Library in Listowel, Stratford Public Library and the Goderich Co-op Art Gallery, 54 Courthouse Square in Goderich. The public is invited to check these out!

To find out more about Awareness Month Events or other Alzheimer Society Huron Perth education opportunities, visit: Education Hour; contact their office at 519 482-1482 or 1-800-561-5012; or email


Screen Shot 2023-01-16 at 2.46.04 PM

Dr. Alexandrea Peel (Submitted photo)

As part of National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month members of the public are invited to join the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth on ZOOM on Tuesday, Jan. 24 for a presentation with local geriatrician, Dr. Alexandrea Peel.
Dr. Peel will be discussing important topics facing seniors in Huron and Perth today. The presentation will begin at 1:30 p.m. Topics will include new medications, driving cessation and more. People are invited to bring their questions for the Question and Answer period.
People can register for this presentation at: Doctor Talk 23. Anyone who has questions they would like to send Dr. Peel ahead of time, or for more information about the program, should contact Christy at the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth by emailing or calling 519 271-1910.
As part of National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month members of the public are invited to join the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth on ZOOM on Tuesday, Jan. 24 for a presentation with local geriatrician, Dr. Alexandrea Peel.

Dr. Peel will be discussing important topics facing seniors in Huron and Perth today. The presentation will begin at 1:30 p.m. Topics will include new medications, driving cessation and more. People are invited to bring their questions for the Question and Answer period.

People can register for this presentation at: Doctor Talk 23. Anyone who has questions they would like to send Dr. Peel ahead of time, or for more information about the program, should contact Christy at the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth by emailing or calling 519 271-1910.


three-thousand-years-of-longingThe Livery Film Fest organizers have their first two film dates of 2023 confirmed for Jan. 19 and Feb. 16.

The new season opens on Jan. 19 with “Three Thousand Years of Longing”, starring Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton.

Swinton plays an academic – content with life and a creature of reason.  While in Istanbul attending a conference, she happens to encounter a Djinn (Elba) who offers her three wishes in exchange for his freedom. This presents two problems. First, she doubts that he is real and second, because she is a scholar of story and mythology, she knows all the cautionary tales of wishes gone wrong. The Djinn pleads his case by telling her fantastical stories of his past. Eventually she is beguiled and makes a wish that surprises them both!

Then on Feb. 16, “Revival69: The Concert That Rocked the World” will be shown.

This is the story of a young concert promoter in Toronto, who was having problems selling tickets to a show at the Varsity Arena.  He had a good line up, featuring: The Doors, Chicago, Chuck Berry, Bo Diddley, and others. John Lennon and Yoko Ono had been in Toronto for their Peace tour, so he called them up to see if they would act as masters of ceremonies for the show. Lennon said he would only attend if he could bring a band and play!  Of course the promoter agreed, and The Plastic Ono Band were such a hit, that John quit the Beatles immediately upon his return to England.  This is the story of how the rock festival came to be, and possibly led to the breakup of The Beatles.

Both films will be shown at the Park Theatre, located at 30 Courthouse Square in Goderich and begin at 7 p.m.

A new opportunity at the Film Fest is a film talk to be held immediately after the shows at Paddy O’Neil’s Restaurant Pub. The pub is located in the Bedford Hotel at 92 Courthouse Square.


For more information, please email: Livery Film Fest Chair Rob McAuley at


Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) has recognized outstanding achievements in conservation each year, since 1984, with conservation awards. The conservation authority will present the Conservationist of the Year Award, for the 40th consecutive year, in 2023.

Past award winners have included rural landowners and residents, agricultural producers and farms, service clubs, community organizations, companies, nature groups, and municipalities.

The local conservation authority invites the public to nominate a person, business, farm, community group, or organization in 2023 for the Conservationist of the Year Award. People may nominate a nominee until Feb. 15.

The nomination form can be found by visiting here: Conservationist of the Year.

“There are many local stewards helping to protect and enhance our local watershed resources,” said General Manager and Secretary-Treasurer of ABCA, Brian Horner. “This award is one way we can say ‘Thank you’ to them for the needed positive stewardship actions they are taking.”

Individuals, organizations or companies who either reside in, or have completed conservation work in, the ABCA area are eligible to win the Conservationist of the Year award. Current ABCA staff members and directors are excluded. The Conservation Award acknowledges one individual or group per year who demonstrates positive conservation principles. The nominee must have undertaken conservation efforts over a number of years showing long-term benefits for nature and society. Examples of conservation work include: improving local water quality; conservation farming; reforestation; conservation education; providing wildlife and fish habitat; and promoting awareness and action for soil, water, and habitat for all living things.

ABCA presents the winner with a hand-crafted gift and makes a donation towards a tree and plaque at a Commemorative Woods site maintained by the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation.

“We have been pleased to recognize many deserving recipients over the years,” Horner said. “We also know there are many others who may not receive an award but who are worthy of recognition and we thank them as well.”


HPPH is changing how it displays local COVID-19 information for Huron-Perth. Up until this point, they have been updating their own dashboards on COVID-19 testing, cases and vaccination; now, similar weekly information for Huron Perth region is also available through Public Health Ontario’s: COVID-19 and Influenza Activity dashboard.

While HPPH prepares a new way to display local information on respiratory illness that will be the most helpful to residents, the previous Tableau dashboards will not be updated.

Public Health Ontario’s dashboard includes a wide range of COVID-19 data about Huron Perth, including case counts by hospitalizations and deaths, vaccine uptake by age, sex and public health unit, outbreaks, and more.


The challenging respiratory illness season in Huron Perth continues. Respiratory viruses including COVID-19, influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are still circulating and are causing severe illness in some individuals.

The number of new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 has been steady. As of Jan. 11, there were two active outbreaks and five people in hospital due to COVID-19. From Sept. 4 to Dec. 31, 2022, there were 121 lab confirmed cases of influenza, nine hospitalizations, one death and one outbreak.  Influenza activity may have peaked in December however local cases continue to be reported.

“Huron Perth is still experiencing a complicated respiratory illness season, which has led to a lot of strain on our healthcare system,” said Medical Officer of Health,  Dr. Miriam Klassen. “I urge everyone to keep ‘layering up’ to protect themselves, their loved ones and the community from viruses such as COVID-19, influenza, RSV and colds.”

Anyone who did not receive a COVID-19 booster in the fall of 2022 should get a booster now. For anyone who received a monovalent or bivalent COVID-19 vaccine booster on or after Sept. 1, 2022, there is no provincial recommendation to receive another dose of COVID-19 vaccine at this time. This includes individuals who were vaccinated using any authorized original or bivalent COVID-19 vaccine. Original and bivalent COVID-19 vaccines will boost immune responses and are likely to provide significant protection against hospitalization and severe disease.

If individuals wish to receive an additional booster, they may do so after talking with a primary care provider and/or vaccination clinic staff. The suggested timing for this second booster would be six months after their last COVID-19 vaccine; the minimum timing is 84 days. Check the Vaccine Dose Calculator at to see options.

Anyone who has recently had a COVID-19 infection should talk to a health care provider and/or vaccination clinic staff about vaccination options.

COVID-19 and influenza vaccines continue to be available at Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) clinics, select pharmacies, and some primary care provider offices.

HPPH COVID-19 vaccine clinic dates and locations up to the end of February are available at For more information about influenza vaccines, visit

Protect yourself, your loved ones and the community by using layers of protection during this “triple threat” season of COVID, RSV and influenza circulating at the same time. These layers include:

More information on using layers of protection can be found at To learn more about how to manage or be assessed for cold, flu, COVID-19 and RSV, visit the Huron and Perth Area Ontario Health Team Caregiver Resources page at


What is her name? What did I come down here for? Where did I put…? The Alzheimer Society Huron Perth has your back! They will be offering their “Memory and Aging Program” again this winter on ZOOM. The Memory and Aging Program is designed for anyone experiencing normal age-related changes in memory or anyone interested in learning more about this topic.

The Memory and Aging Program describes what memory is, how it changes with age, and when to be concerned. Brain healthy lifestyle choices and practical memory strategies are reviewed and practiced, improving a person’s ability to remember those everyday things – including, those pesky names and things you intend to do! Equally important, the Memory and Aging Program is enjoyable and seeks to build confidence in a person’s own memory ability.

The Memory and Aging Program consists of four weekly ZOOM sessions, 1:30-3:30 p.m. on the following Tuesdays: Jan. 31, Feb. 7, 14 and 21. There is a fee of $25, which covers the cost of the program workbook and materials.

People are asked to register online at Memory and Aging Program Winter 2023 or go to the Education Hour section on their website. For information about this or any other programs, please contact Jeanette at the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth by calling 519 482-1482 or emailing


Three people pleaded guilty in Provincial Offences Court in Sarnia on Dec. 5, 2022 for work undertaken without a permit at three properties in the Beach O’Pines community southwest of Grand Bend.

Investigation revealed the property owners hired a contractor to excavate the beach and sand dune and place armour stone blocks and stone material on the beach in front of the three properties in 2019, all without the permission of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA).

Ryan Finch, Brian Finch and Georgina Finch entered guilty pleas to offences pursuant to the Conservation Authorities Act. The work took place at one property on Beach O’Pines Road and two properties on Huron Drive.

The matter has been adjourned to Jan. 26. The Court agreed to defer sentencing until after the landowners have completed supervised restoration works.

The pleas (four in total) in this case are reminders of the need to abide by laws that protect life, property and the environment.

“We hope this case reminds and educates property owners about the need to obtain the required legal permissions before proceeding with proposed development,” said Daniel King, ABCA Regulations coordinator and Provincial Offences officer.

Construction and other development requires conservation authority approval in all regulated areas. Most property owners and contractors contact ABCA early to obtain the required permits, King said, but prosecution is required in some cases when work has taken place without the necessary permits. Permits are required for work in regulated areas, through Province of Ontario legislation including, but not limited to, Conservation Authorities Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. C.27 and Ontario Regulation 147/06: Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority: Regulation of Development, Interference with Wetlands and Alterations to Shorelines and Watercourses.

Calling conservation authority staff first can help a property owner to avoid costly and avoidable fines, the costs of removing unapproved works and restoring a property, and even time in court.

“If you are considering possible development on your property, call us first to find out if a permit is needed,” King said. “Contacting us early prevents unnecessary costs later.”

ABCA Staff say property owners and agents are invited to contact King at 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 Ext. 224, or email

“Our staff work hard to ensure anyone who contacts us receives a timely response,” King said.

To find out more about required permits please visit:  Planning and Permits..


Now more than ever, charities and non-profits are playing a key role in addressing persistent and complex social problems faced by all Canadians. The Community Services Recovery Fund is a $400 million investment from the Government of Canada to support charities and non-profits as they build resilience by making investments in their people, organizations, and program innovation.

“We are now accepting Community Services Recovery Fund applications,” said United Way Perth-Huron Director Governance & Community Impact Megan Partridge. “With this funding provided by the Government of Canada, we will support a broad and diverse range of charities and non-profits to adapt and modernize so they can better support recovery in their communities. We encourage organizations to visit and learn more.”

“The Government is supporting the long-term COVID-19 pandemic recovery in communities across Canada through this historic fund,” said Minister of Families, Children and Social Development, Karina Gould. “This transformational investment with the National Funders supports a more inclusive model of economic growth that creates opportunities at the community level. The Community Services Recovery Fund will strengthen the ability of community service organizations, including charities, non-profits and Indigenous governing bodies, to deliver services and resources where they will have the most impact.”

United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is proud to be taking part in the Community Services Recovery Fund, a collaboration between United Way Centraide Canada, Canadian Red Cross, and Community Foundations of Canada to provide funding to Community Service Organizations, including non-profit organizations, Indigenous Governing Bodies and Registered Charities located across Canada. The Community Services Recovery Fund responds to what charities and non-profits need right now and supports organizations as they adapt to the long-term impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications will be accepted until Feb. 21.


A local committee working to protect drinking water sources is proposing updates to source protection plans for the Ausable Bayfield and Maitland Valley areas.

The plans have been prepared under the Ontario Clean Water Act, 2006, to protect municipal sources of drinking water and to ensure their sustainable use into the future. The Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Source Protection Committee (SPC) invites the public to review and comment on the proposed updates to these plans. Please submit written comments by Feb. 10  to

The local committee developed the source protection plans and the Province of Ontario approved them in 2015. The plans need to be updated, according to the committee, because of recent changes. The wellhead protection area for Belgrave is updated to reflect a new water well. There are also minor changes to wellhead protection areas for Wingham, Palmerston, and Auburn. Policies in the plans are revised to reflect new provincial technical rules and to improve implementation. Key policy changes address road salt, fuel storage, and snow storage.

The proposed changes may affect properties close to municipal wells. For those who live or work in these vulnerable areas, plan policies may affect how and where certain activities which could impact drinking water sources can occur.

Matt Pearson, chair of the SPC, says people are invited to attend open houses, or a webinar, to learn more and to ask questions.

“Locally developed plans have helped to protect municipal drinking water sources since 2015,” he said. “It is now time to revise the plans to keep them current. We want the public to know about proposed changes to policies and we would like to hear people’s questions and comments.”

To review the proposed updates to source protection plans, visit: Source Protection Consultation.

A short video featuring SPC member Allan Rothwell, describes some of the proposed changes. People can view the video, entitled,  “Have your Say” here.

People  are invited to find out more at the following public events:

  • Wingham Open House: Wednesday, Jan. 18, 4:30-7 p.m., Hot Stove Lounge, North Huron Wescast Community Complex, 99 Kerr Drive.
  • Clinton Open House: Wednesday, Jan. 25, 4:30-7 p.m., Board Room, Central Huron Community Centre Complex, 239 Bill Fleming Drive.

For more information or to review a paper copy of the documents please call source protection staff at 519 235-2610, or toll-free 1-888-286-2610, Ext.  247.



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 6,700 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.

This week we take a closer look at a device invented to make the lives of farm families easier seven decades or so ago…


This is a barrel churn used to convert cream into butter from around 1950. The barrel is attached to metal legs and has a pedal on its left-hand side. On the back of the barrel, a maker’s mark reads “Nortman & Ward: London Ontario MANFGR’s”. In between the metal legs and underneath the barrel, there is a piece of wood. On the back of the wood, there is a maker’s mark in black text, but it is too faded to read.

This butter churn was used by Herbert and Marjorie Beierling on their farm in Hay Township. They used it to convert cream into butter. They would then either keep the butter for themselves or they would sell the product locally.

In 1946, Herbert Beierling purchased a farm at Lot 26, Concession 11 in Hay Township from William Scrag, who moved to Indiana, U.S.A. Herbert bought cattle and continued producing milk which was shipped to the Holmesville Dairy and later to Stacey Brothers in Mitchell. The farm was converted to a beef cattle and cash crop operation in 1976.

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This week we wrap up our retrospective with a look back on the year that just was from Aug. 24 to Dec. 28.

This is the perfect time for us to extend our heartfelt thanks to our advertisers for without their financial support we wouldn’t be able to come into your email inbox each Wednesday morning. Several of these advertisers have been with us since “Issue 1” and we are so happy to acknowledge this fact. We would also like to welcome our more recent advertisers interest in advertising in the Bayfield Breeze seems to grow each year and we are truly grateful for this vote of confidence in our publication.

We encourage our subscribers to support our advertisers by visiting their websites (click on their ad) and consider them first when in need of a product or service.

We would also like to take this opportunity to say thank you to you – our subscribers and regular readers – for your ongoing support. We have about 1,500 followers on Facebook now and we’re creeping close to 2,000 email subscribers who are all very engaged! Thank you for subscribing, reading and sharing with others who may not have heard of the Bayfield Breeze. As I like to say, “it takes a village” and this publication is truly proof positive of that!

For a closer look at these images click on any one to open a pop up gallery.



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

Screen Shot 2023-01-17 at 1.52.53 PMIn 2021, I was introduced to Good Reads – a website devoted to book lovers who like to keep track of what they read. I think it is a pretty brilliant site and enjoy logging my books and setting yearly reading goals. In 2022, I set the lofty goal of reading 24 books and finished 22 before the year ran out.

In looking back at the titles I can see I kept things relatively light this year reading a number of titles from my favorite modern day author, Sophie Kinsella and exploring the world of youth fiction for titles to share with my grandchildren. Thank you Matt Haig, J.K. Rowling and Henry Winkler!

Thanks to Good Reads I know I read 7,190 pages with my shortest book being “Miracle on 34th Street” by Valentine Davies with 136 pages and the longest being “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” at 734 pages. The highest rated among my chosen titles was “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” – having been virtually shelved by other readers 5,174,750 times!

My titles for 2022 are a rather eclectic mix with the family book club continuing to help me broaden my horizons away from the world of historic fiction and biography. The last book I squeezed in before the clock struck midnight on Dec. 31st was a recently published local treasure entitled, “A Venture in Antiques in 1950s Bayfield” by Robert H. Roddick and available through the Bayfield Historical Society for $20. Anyone who loves Bayfield and learning about what it was like to live here a few short decades ago, the trials and triumphs of restoring an historic home or the era of honest to goodness antiques would find this a delightful read. It was edited by three village residents with a desire to preserve local history and honor the legacy left by both the Roddicks and Thompsons who were the  caretakers of Bayfield’s Century House property for many a decade.

So what were my Good Reads for 2022? Here they are in all their page-turning glory:

  • Star of the Sea by Joseph O’Connor
  • Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
  • How to be a Canadian by Will and Ian Ferguson
  • The Blythes are Quoted by L.M. Montgomery
  • Anne’s Cradle by Eri Muraoka
  • Miracle on 34th Street by Valentine Davies
  • Chop Suey Nation by Ann Hui
  • Wedding Night, Finding Audrey, Love Your Life, I Owe You One, Fairy Mermaid Magic all by Sophie Kinsella
  • The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, The Prisoner of Azkaban and The Goblet of Fire all by J.K. Rowling
  • Alien Superstar – Lights, Camera, Danger by Henry Winkler
  • The Boat that Wouldn’t Float by Farley Mowat
  • A Mouse Called Mika, To Be a Cat, Evie and the Animals all by Matt Haig
  • A Venture in Antiques in 1950s Bayfield by Robert H. Roddick

Here’s to turning more pages and reaching more reading goals in 2023! – Melody

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