bayfield breeze issue

The Bayfield BreezeIssue 759 Week 05 Vol 15

January 24, 2024


Issue 759 Week 05 Vol 15
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Bayfield Main Street North is part of the Heritage Conservation District. The community is invited to sessions in February to have their say in the district plan update. (Photo by John Pounder)

The Heritage Conservation District boundary map. (Image courtesy Municipality of Bluewater)

The Heritage Conservation District Plan for Bayfield Main Street North and Clan Gregor Square is currently being updated and people will have a chance to join in on the conversation on Feb. 7-8.

On Nov.  4th of last year, 20 members of the community and five members of the Municipal Heritage Advisory Committee attended the initial project open house hosted by the Municipality of Bluewater and the consultant team, ERA Architects and GSP Group.

The take-away from this open house was that the heritage value of Clan Gregor Square and Main Street North is valued by residents, business owners and visitors to Bayfield. The hosts heard that the current Plan, written in 1983, does not contain detailed design direction which has created subjectivity in terms of criteria. They also heard that the process for changes to a building is not well understood.

There are three purposes for updating the Heritage Conservation District Plan.

The first purpose is to confirm the boundaries of the Study Area. Which properties should be included as part of the district? Several properties along Main Street North and around Clan Gregor Square ‘opted out’ in 1983 and are not included in the current Plan. There is an opportunity to include new properties based on community input.

The second purpose is to update the design direction. What specific character elements contribute to the district? The public’s insights will assist with development of guidelines that will include detailed design direction on elements such as entrances, windows, rooflines, materials, additions to existing buildings, new buildings, etc.

The third purpose is to clarify the process. This is an opportunity to ensure that flexibility is maintained for property owners and business operators within the district. What is the process when a property owner would like to add an addition to their building? What is the process should a building be proposed for demolition? What is the process when a business owner would like to install a new sign?

The project consultants, ERA Architects and GSP Group, will be in Bayfield on Feb. 7-8 to gain community input on the Heritage Conservation District Plan. During this two-day session, there will be designated times for input from members of the community, property owners within the Study Area, business owners within the Study Area, and members of the Heritage Advisory Committee and Council.

Members of the public are invited to drop by the Trinity St James Anglican Church Parish Hall, 10 Keith Crescent in Bayfield, and provide their input. An Open House style format will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 7 from 10 a.m. to noon and on Thursday, Feb. 8 from 2-4 p.m. A formal presentation and an opportunity for questions will be offered on Feb. 7 from 6-8 p.m.

For further information, visit: Bayfield Heritage Conservation District Plan or email


Just as CBC is hosting Canada Reads on the National level, The Village Bookshop is hosting Bayfield Reads 2024 on a local scale. The local instalment will be held on Sunday, March 3rd at the Bayfield Town Hall.

Some familiar Bayfield friends will be defending this year’s Canada Reads books. Everyone who attends can help choose the defender who will receive the People’s Choice Award. The celebrity judging panel of Tyler Hessel, Dave MacLaren, and Rachael Rishworth will be on hand to pick the winner of this year’s event. CBC has again developed a theme that allows people to review five Canadian books and decide which “one book to carry us forward”.

Peter Ferguson will defend “Meet Me at the Lake” by Carley Fortune. This book tells a story focusing on a random connection that sends two strangers on a daylong adventure where they make a promise one keeps and the other breaks, with life-changing effects.

Ferguson embraces his lifelong love of reading that was inspired by his Mother during summer vacations as a child in Grand Bend. As a teacher and a Principal, Ferguson encourages his own students to love reading and he also knows the importance of modeling a love of reading.

“There is nothing quite like seeing the sparkle in the eye of a five year-old who is totally engaged with a story,” said Ferguson.

Bayfield Reads organizers look forward to watching Ferguson as well as the other defenders: Catherine Tillmann, defending “Bad Cree” by Jessica Johns; Madison Thornton, defending “The Future” by Catherine Leroux; Paula Brent, defending “Shut Up You’re Pretty” by Tea Mutonji; and Faith Wyant, defending “Denison Avenue” illustrated by Daniel Innes with text by Christina Wong.

Bayfield Reads shall begin at 2 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door for $5. Refreshments will be served.

This year’s Bayfield Reads book selection, and so many more, are available at The Village Bookshop located at 24 Bayfield Main Street North in Bayfield. People can also shop online by visiting: village


(Graphic by Tom Gill – image courtesy National Park Service – US Department of the Interior website)

As ice forms on the lake, it constantly breaks up, refreezes, and gets pushed toward the shoreline, forming ice shelves that can stretch several metres out into the lake. It appears almost as an extension of the shoreline in some places and is very appealing to the adventurous walker or photographer.

However, these surfaces are not safe to walk on.

Unlike the ice that forms over bodies of standing water, ice forming over the Great Lakes is thinner and less stable because the lake is always moving beneath it. What appears to be thick, stable ice, can hide large cracks or caverns. One wrong step and individuals can find themselves falling through the cracks and getting trapped in the caverns or plunging into the frigid waters. Hypothermia can set in within minutes if the temperatures are cold enough. Depending on conditions, it can be difficult for rescue crews to respond.

As beautiful as these natural phenomena are, it is far better, and safer, to enjoy them from the shore.


Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines (BFF) volunteers know that the cats and kittens that come into their care all have a story to tell – a few are happy, some infuriating and others just plain sad, but this week – the story is rather humorous.

Valury is the Adopt a BFF kitten of the week.

“This beautiful little Tabby took matters into her own hands and surrendered herself by walking into the Pet Valu store in Goderich,” said Deb Penhale, representing BFF. “She has both beauty and brains as well as great survival skills because she knew just where to go for help.”

Penhale went on to say that the always amazing staff at Pet Valu set her up with a soft, warm place to stay and filled her empty, little belly.

“Well, maybe not that empty, as we fear she may have babies on board,” said Penhale.

Valury is spunky, sassy, playful and looking for a foster until she has her babies (volunteers will know for certain shortly) and can be vetted.  Then she will be ready for her forever home.

Valury is a reminder that BFF is desperately looking for foster homes for cats and kittens like her.

“The phone never stops ringing with regards to cats and kittens in need,” said Penhale.

Foster homes are great but forever homes are even better and with that in mind BFF will be hosting their first Adoption Weekend Event of 2024 at Pet Valu in Goderich on Jan. 27-28 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on both days.

Anyone interested in becoming a foster or adopting is encouraged to email BFF at the address listed below.

Financial donations may be sent via E-transfer to or mailed to P.O. Box 33, Bayfield, ON, N0M 1G0. The adoption fee is $250. Adopted cats are vetted, shots are up-to-date and they are also spayed or neutered.

In addition to accepting monetary donations, BFF has an Amazon wish list. This list contains items they need for the day-to-day care of their cats and kittens as well as some truly “wish” items. Items are marked as to their priority, number needed, and many explain what their use will be. There is a wide variety of prices and BFF appreciates whatever you can supply. Items need not be purchased through Amazon, the list is merely a guideline.

To view the items on the list please visit:  BFF Wish List.

Pet Valu in Goderich is another location where donations can be made or items purchased for the benefit of BFF. The business is located at 35400 Huron Road.

BFF has a Facebook group dedicated to adoptions known as “Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines ADOPTION Group” so people can view more of the fur babies ready for homes. Adoption inquiries may also be made to the BFF’s email address above.


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 2024.

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 2024 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, $120. 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.


One of the roles of the Bayfield Ratepayers Association (Ratepayers) is to monitor Bluewater Council and provide periodic updates on actions and other important council topics that affect Bayfield. The following was written with this role in mind.

The Municipality of Bluewater passed a strategic plan for Council at the Dec. 5, 2023 Council meeting. There are nine initiatives to be worked on over the next three years and an action plan will be agreed upon for each initiative.

Council plans to begin work on a Corporate Strategy Plan from now until 2027, starting with the top three priorities in January/February, completing them by mid-2025. These top three priorities include the following:

  • One Bluewater Asset Management Plan – Complete an Asset Management Plan that embraces a “One Bluewater” approach to asset/facilities consolidation (where appropriate).
  •  Fire Master Plan & Station Location review – Execute a Fire Master Plan and Station Location Review to modernize Bluewater’s current fire and emergency services delivery model.
  •  Council Composition / Ward Boundary Review – Design and execute a Council Composition/Ward Boundary Review emphasizing robust community consultation and expert technical analysis.

For more information or to provide input please contact the Ratepayers via their website:


On Thursday, Jan. 25, the Bayfield Branch Library will host “Cinephile Connections” offering the movie “The Wife”, from 2017,  starring Glenn Close and Jonathon Pryce. In this film, a “wife questions her life choices as she travels to Stockholm to see her husband receive the Nobel Prize for Literature”. The movie shall commence at 3:15 p.m.

Cinephile Connections is intended as an adult program because the films shown may include mature themes. Those who watch this classic film are invited to stay and chat about it after the viewing. The program is sponsored by the Friends of the Bayfield Library.

Movie-goers are asked to register using the contact information provided above.

The Bayfield Branch Library is located at 18 Main Street North in the village.


Gentle Flow Yoga is being offered at the Bayfield Community Centre and Arena on Tuesdays in January.

Drop-ins are welcome to attend “Gentle Flow Yoga with Shannon” on Tuesday mornings starting at 9 a.m. The drop-in fee is $10 per person or $40 for a monthly pass. Participants should note that classes will not be held in February but will resume on March. 5.

For more information please contact Shannon by calling 519 404-5199 or by email at


The congregation of Trinity St. James Anglican Church invites those in the community to worship with them on Wednesdays and Sundays.

Wednesday services are held starting at 10:30 a.m. while Sundays services begin at 11 a.m.

Morning Prayer with Lisa Currah will be held on Sunday, Jan. 28.

Rev. Mary Farmer will soon lead a one hour, six-week, Lenten Study starting on Thursday, Feb. 8 at 10 a.m. This Study will be held on ZOOM to allow folks to take part without the worry of travel. It is open to all in the community that may have an interest. Please reach out to Rev. Mary Farmer for further details and a link by emailing

Trinity St. James Anglican church is located at 10 Keith Crescent in Bayfield.


Knox Presbyterian Church in Bayfield is located at 2 Bayfield Main Street, North. (Submitted photo)

Knox Presbyterian Church in Bayfield  has reconvened their Book Study following a break for Christmas. They meet on the lower level of the church on Mondays at noon (excluding holidays). The reading is a launching point for their discussions.

Their current focus is “Shalom Sistas – Living Wholeheartedly in a Brokenhearted World” by Osheta Moore. All are welcome to join. For those who wish to take part, the book can be purchased at: The Village Bookshop. Please note that the Book Study will not be held on Jan. 29 and Feb. 5.

Members of the congregation are currently gathering items for re-use and upcycling. Upcycling takes something no longer in use and gives it a second life with new functions, for example, the outer milk bag can be upcycled into sleeping mats. These mats are distributed to people in need throughout the world. Knox Bayfield gathers clean outer milk bags that have been previously washed and dried, used stamps, empty egg cartons and eyeglasses.  Items can be dropped off at the church from 10 a.m, to  2 p.m. on Sunday and Monday (excluding holidays). People’s generous contributions are warmly accepted and will change lives.

All are welcome to join in weekly services at Knox Bayfield on Sundays at 11 a.m.

Prayer requests can be shared in several ways. Please contact the minister by emailing for more information.

Knox Presbyterian Church Bayfield is located at 2 Bayfield Main Street North. To learn more visit or follow them on YouTube – Knox, Bayfield.


The “Coffee & Chat” group at the Bayfield Branch Library has reconvened following a summer break. The Friends of Bayfield Library extend a warm welcome to all who would like to join in.

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 “Coffee & Chat” group will meet in the Bayfield Library Meeting Room every Tuesday from 2-3:30 p.m. The program will extend until the end of June 2024.

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!


Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) has recognized outstanding achievements in conservation and stewardship, each year, with conservation awards. In 2024 the conservation authority will present its Conservationist of the Year Award for the 41st time.

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 2024 for the Conservationist of the Year Award. People may make nominations until Feb. 9. To submit a nomination, visit the website. The nomination form on the Conservation Award web page can be found by visiting: Conservationist of the Year.

Marissa Vaughan is Chair of the ABCA Board of Directors. She says the award is one of the ways the conservation authority thanks local stewards for protecting and enhancing local watershed resources.

“We appreciate all the local landowners and residents who are taking positive actions to create healthy watershed communities for today, and for future generations to come,” she said. “It is an honor to recognize one of these worthy stewards with the Conservationist of the Year Award. Although we select one winner each year, we know there are many, many individuals and groups who are worthy of recognition and I thank you all.”

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, sustainable 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.


Kathy Vassilakos (Submitted photo)

United Way Perth-Huron (UWPH) is proud to announce Kathy Vassilakos as the new director of United Housing.

“We’re pleased to have Kathy join us,” said Ryan Erb, UWPH executive director. “She brings an incredible breadth of experience and a commitment to public service to this role. We welcome her to the UWPH team.

“As our community continues to see so many people experiencing the effects of the current housing crisis, it’s important we continue building United Housing. I look forward to working with Kathy on new and existing housing projects and securing the $543,000 in funding we need to ensure United Housing, alongside many partners, achieves our community goal of a place to live for every person in Perth-Huron.”

“I’m excited to take on the director’s role with United Housing,” said Vassilakos. “Getting new, affordable housing built is critical to the health of our region. Through my time on Stratford City Council, I’ve seen the significant amount of work being done by both the City of Stratford and the County of Huron as the Consolidated Municipal Service Managers responsible for delivering and administering housing programs and services to our region. We believe that United Housing is a perfect vehicle to support the existing work and further increase the amount of available, affordable housing stock.”

Vassilakos brings a wide-ranging skillset to the director’s role. In her time as a city councillor in Stratford, she not only worked within the community, but across municipalities and provincially. Highlights included time on the Association of Municipalities of Ontario’s housing taskforce, the Grand Trunk Master Plan and the Britannia Street Housing Project in Stratford. Vassilakos has also served on many boards and committees including as co-chair of UWPH’s Social Research & Planning Council and chair of Huron Perth Public Health.

“Ultimately, the only way we can address this housing crisis is by coming together as a community,” added Vassilakos. “Everyone — developers, government, nonprofits and the larger community — must join in the effort. So much foundational work has already been done on United Housing thanks to Ryan and Mitch. I look forward to getting out into our region and furthering discussions with our local partners around how we can get people housed.”

As Vassilakos ramps up her work on United Housing, UWPH also celebrates the contributions of outgoing director, Mitchell Rhodes.

“We’d like to extend our gratitude to Mitch for his work,” added Erb. “Over the past two-plus years, he has been an incredible collaborator in helping build the United Housing initiative. His knowledge of the nonprofit housing space, and his willingness to help however was needed to build our initiative, has been invaluable. We’re also glad to announce Mitch has agreed to stay on part-time as a senior consultant with United Housing.”

“It was an honor and privilege to work at UWPH,” said Rhodes. “Addressing the housing deficit — and more acutely the affordable housing deficit — is the issue of our time and we all must be part of the solution. Studies show that without a strong, local nonprofit housing developer, affordable housing needs will not be met. I’m proud that, along with colleagues and community support, we were able to move United Housing from being an idea of how we can help address the housing crisis locally, to the reality of projects in the pipeline that will bring affordable housing units to our communities. I’m excited to see work continue under Kathy’s leadership.”


Amanda Mongeon (Submitted photo)

Management of emergencies in rural areas is a complex issue. Gateway Centre of Excellence in Rural Health’s (Gateway) latest episode in their ongoing virtual rural health lecture series will address this topic.

This lecture will feature a presentation by PhD Candidate Amanda Mongeon, from the University of Guelph, who will be presenting her doctoral research, “Enhancing Emergency Management in Rural Northern Ontario: Learning from COVID-19″. In this lecture, Mongeon will be using Northern Ontario Municipalities’ experiences with COVID-19 to identify opportunities for future emergency response.

Joining Mongeon in this presentation will be panelists: Fort Frances Councilor Wendy Brunetta; Karrie Lepoudre and Adam Zuback both from the Canadian Red Cross.

This one hour lecture will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 6,  starting at noon via ZOOM.

To register please visit Gateway’s website at


Highly recommended, “Anatomy of a Fall” is the next instalment of the Livery Film Fest. The film takes the viewer on an intimate journey and a courtroom dissection of a complicated marriage. Samuel and Sandra, brilliantly performed by Sandra Hüller, their son Daniel and his guide dog Snoop are living in a partially renovated, remote chalet in Savoie, France. The marriage is further strained by Samuel’s resentment toward his wife and her current writing successes versus his creative block.

Daniel discovers his father dead below their attic window. At first Sandra assumes it must have been an accidental fall but a head injury suggests Samuel was pushed from the balcony. A clever and compelling drama ensues when Sandra is charged and must prove her innocence after the unexpected death of her husband.

Justine Triet, the film’s co-writer and director won the illustrious Palme d’Or at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival becoming the third female director to win the award. Anatomy of a Fall has received many awards, notably European Film Awards for best actress and best screenplay and most recently, two Golden Globe Awards.

This highly recommended film will play for one night only, Thursday, Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. at the Park Theatre in Goderich. The Box Office will open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $12, or $8 for Livery members. Please note tickets are only available at the door, there are no advance sales.

For more information please email

The Park Theatre is located at 30 Courthouse Square.


A combined outbreak of COVID-19 and Influenza A at the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance (HPHA) – Stratford General Hospital has been declared over by Huron Perth Public Health. The outbreak had been declared on the Medicine Unit on Jan. 15.

“Upon declaring the outbreak, immediate precautions were implemented, including prevalence testing for patients,” said Erica Jensen, manager Quality, Patient Safety and Infection Control.

The Medicine Unit has been reopened to admissions and transfers. Family and Caregiver Presence on the Unit has also been restored. Full guidelines can be found on their website at

“While this outbreak is over, we can’t stress enough the importance of layering up your protection to help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses that are circulating in Huron Perth,” added Jensen. “Keep up-to-date with your flu and COVID-19 vaccines, wash your hands often, stay home if you are feeling sick and wear a mask when required/needed.”

Speaking of masks, they are required to be worn in all clinical areas of HPHA hospital sites. This includes inpatient units, emergency departments, outpatient clinics, imaging, labs and waiting rooms. Medical grade masks are provided at the entrances and at masking stations throughout hospital sites.

“To keep our patients and team members safe from hospital-acquired respiratory infections it is important to follow the masking requirements when attending medical appointments and visiting loved ones,” explained Jensen. “This includes wearing a mask in the patient’s room when visiting. If you, or anyone in your household, feel sick or have symptoms of illness it is strongly advised that you do not visit people in the hospital until you are fully recovered. Patients in the hospital are vulnerable and are at a higher risk of developing more severe illnesses from COVID-19, the flu or even a simple cold.”


Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA), working with local landowners and other project partners, has planted more than one million trees since 2006.

Ian Jean is ABCA Forestry and Land Stewardship Specialist. He said it is the work of local landowners, and the support of project partners including funding partners, that has made the tree program so successful. Local landowners plant tens of thousands of trees each year.

“When we looked back at the numbers recently, we noted that, since 2006, just more than one million trees had been planted across the watershed,” he said. “The other thing we noticed was an increasing trend in the number of people planting trees.”

While more people are planting trees, this does not necessarily translate to more trees being planted each year. The number of trees planted in the watershed remains steady, fluctuating between 35,000 and 70,000 annually. The presence or absence of one or more large planting projects can make the difference between tree planting numbers at the higher or lower end of that range, according to Jean.

Trees and forests help to create clean air and clean water, Jean said. Trees and forests also contribute to better mental and physical health.

More than 200 landowners in the watershed planted trees or had ABCA staff plant trees for them in 2023. This high level of interest, in taking action to improve the water, air and soil, is worth noting.

“People are engaged, and they are working to make positive improvements,” he said.

Spring is not far away and ABCA staff say a sure sign of spring coming is the Spring Tree Order Form. It is posted at the conservation authority website at on this web page: Order Trees.

Interested landowners may submit mail-in tree orders until Jan. 31. Tree orders accompanied by payment are taken until Feb. 29.

ABCA offers a wide range of trees through its spring tree planting program. The Forestry and Land Stewardship Specialist encourages interested landowners to visit for the spring tree order form or to give him a call at 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 to discuss planting projects.

“We’re happy to help with project design and help to apply for funding for eligible projects,” he said.

Funding programs are available in many areas for naturalization dependent on the type of project, location and specific program details.

ABCA thanks grant program funding partners including member municipalities, Huron County Clean Water Project, Forests Ontario, the Government of Canada’s Canada Nature Fund, Sunset Community Foundation and Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation, along with other funding partners, community donors and other valued funding partners.

Anyone who has property on which they can plant trees, is asked to consider purchasing a tree through the tree order program. If someone doesn’t have room on their property for trees, they can still help to improve forest conditions by donating to tree planting through the Footprints to Forests program. To learn more visit:  Footprints to Forests.


In 2024, the South Huron Arts Centre (SHAC) continues to offer a wide range of programs in the arts. But SHAC has also made additions to its calendar in response to community interest. As always, whether people are interested in art, music, crafts, cooking, photography, fabrics, decorating, self-care, or dance, they can find what they are looking for.

Registrations are picking up, but all programs still have openings. While readers are asked to check the SHAC website for details, here is an overview.

As noted, arts and crafts remain very popular. People may wish to spend time with Denise Antaya as she explores ‘landscapes through the eyes of the artist.’ Or bring a preschooler where they will learn to love the arts.  New and intermediate artists will find programs in acrylic painting and of course, watercolor programs are big again. Pick from evening watercolor parties or actual classes or learn about watercolor with wool.

For the ‘hands-on’ artist, afternoon and evening programs are offered in pottery. People can get creative with clay, stained glass, printmaking or landscape design.

Crafts remain a strong program area. Perhaps a person’s interest lies in creating a spring floral display, a project in crochet or Ukrainian Easter eggs. SHAC also offers an upcycling custom flannel program.

Moving to music, SHAC still offers lessons in guitar whether for beginners or for those wishing to improve their skills. It’s expected ukulele lessons will be popular again.

For individuals who enjoy cooking SHAC offers four programs including, meal planning and preparation, the art of canning and gluten free cooking. BYOC (bring your own crock) is a program that helps people learn how to make bread.

Last but not least, SHAC believes people need to take good care of themselves. Opportunities in this regard include: the art of the pedicure, morning wake-up dance-exercise class and how to learn the Texas two-step, the waltz and  jive among others.

To register, or to find out more, visit: or email

The South Huron Arts Centre is located at 42 James Street, Exeter in the Exeter United Church.


The office of the Municipality of Bluewater Council has submitted the following to the Bayfield Breeze as highlights of their regular meeting of council held on  Jan. 15.

  • Adopted an Investment Policy.
  • Appointed Sophie Skaith to the Communities in Bloom and Environmental Committee.
  • Scheduled a budget meeting for Feb. 7 commencing at 6:30 p.m.
  • Cancelled the regular scheduled Council meeting of March 18.
  • Authorized two traffic and parking by-law exemptions at 93-95 Wellington Street, Hensall and 121 Centre Street, Dashwood.


St. George’s Anglican Church in Goderich will host their 44th Shrove Tuesday Pancake and Sausage Supper on Tuesday, Feb. 13 with three meal service times and some special musical entertainment.

The first opportunity to indulge in some pancakes will happen at lunchtime. This meal service style is designed for people to come and go between 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.

There are two evening sittings. The first sitting will be at 5 p.m. The doors will open at 4:15 p.m. for pre-dinner music in the church sanctuary provided by the Goderich District Collegiate Institute (GDCI) Jazz Band. The second sitting will begin at 6:30 p.m. with the doors opening at 5:45 p.m. and once again the GDCI Jazz Band will provide some musical entertainment for attendees.

Tickets for the Supper are $10 per person; children under five years of age are free. Tickets are available now by visiting Fincher’s and Cravings, both located on The Square in Goderich or by calling the church office at 519 524-2274.

St. George’s Anglican Church is located at 87 Nelson Street in Goderich.


Good Neighbours of Bluewater (GNOB) is excited to announce the return of “Muffin Time” now on Thursdays for one hour beginning at 10 a.m. This is a great time to renew acquaintances, meet new friends and indulge in baked goods! Muffin Time is sure to become a Thursday staple amid the other GNOB activities of the day.

In addition to their coffee hours, exercise classes, cards and board games, GNOB hosts special educational events.

GNOB will host two Learning Hub “Staying Safe Online: Internet Safety for Everyone” classes. The first will be held on Feb. 1st from 6:30-8:30 p.m. followed by the second on Friday, Feb. 2 from 1-3 p.m. In this course, participants will look at how to safely navigate the Internet including creating strong passwords (and how to remember them), social media safety, how to avoid phishing and malware and learn about two factor authentication. For more information or to register please contact the Learning Hub directly at 519 527-2288 Ext. 2508.

Good Neighbours of Bluewater is located at 28 Goshen Street North in Zurich. People can learn more about GNOB by visiting:


The cost of housing is top of mind for many, and United Way Perth Huron (UWPH)’s Social Research and Planning Council (SRPC) wants to learn how individuals and families across the region are being affected.

“The news is full of housing statistics,” said Kristin Crane, director of Social Research and Planning for United Way. “What we hear less often are stories about the people behind the numbers. The Cost of Housing survey offers a safe space for people to share their experience. The SRPC and United Way are in the business of helping us all understand and build our communities. We want to cultivate compassion and caring and learn how we can better help those facing the challenges of homelessness, precarious housing and unaffordable housing.”

Open during January, the survey offers people a chance to share how they have been impacted by the current crisis. The digital-only survey is anonymous and takes around seven minutes. For a link, visit

“This information is critical from the perspective of community building,” added Ryan Erb, UWPH executive director. “It also helps UWPH as we continue addressing housing and homelessness regionally, whether that’s helping with rent arrears through the Urgent Needs Fund, connecting vulnerable people with services at our Connection Centres or developing and sustaining housing through United Housing. We encourage people to take the survey.”


The Alzheimer Society Huron Perth will host two movies, “The Father” and “Supernova”  at the Huron County Museum in Goderich as part of their 2024 Alzheimer’s Awareness Month.

These movies will be presented for free but donations to the Alzheimer Society would be gratefully appreciated.

The Father will be shown on Thursday, Jan. 25 at 2 p.m. and again on Thursday, Feb. 1st at 7 p.m. Supernova will be presented on Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. and once more on Feb. 1st at 2 p.m.

The Father is an Academy Award Winning movie that stars Anthony Hopkins (Antony)  and Olivia Colman (Anne). It tells the story of how father and daughter navigate difficult choices – safety and independence, good days and bad, boundaries and love.

Supernova stars Colin Firth (Sam) and Stanley Tucci (Tusker). These partners of twenty years are on a road trip across England visiting friends and family. Enroute they reflect on life’s priorities, dealing with loss and their ongoing commitment to each other.

For more information please contact the Alzheimer Society Huron Perth by emailing or by calling 519 482-1482.

The Huron County Museum is located at 110 North Street in Goderich.


Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) is preparing for the future of local conservation by creating a new watershed strategy. The local conservation organization is looking to the public to provide input into this plan to guide local watershed management.

A new Watershed-Based Resource Management Strategy (WBRMS) will fulfil requirements of the Conservation Authorities Act. It will also meet local needs to protect life and property from natural hazards and to manage and protect resources on a watershed basis.

During the first phase of development, earlier in 2023, the public was invited to provide feedback on the ABCA vision and mission, guiding principles and objectives.

“The feedback was largely positive,” said Kate Monk, ABCA Projects coordinator. “We are building on the first phase to identify the best way to address the issues, fulfil our responsibilities and serve the community.”

The draft strategy proposes six focus areas for the ABCA:

  • Protecting life and property from natural hazards of flooding and erosion
  •  Conservation authority lands and passive recreation
  •  Research and monitoring
  • Outreach and education
  • Stewardship, restoration and forestry
  • Drinking water source protection

These areas comply with the Conservation Authorities Act and enable the ABCA to deliver the programs identified in agreements with the municipalities.

“No single agency has the capacity to do everything,” she said. “We will continue to collaborate with municipalities, citizens and agencies to work towards the goal of a healthy environment for future generations.”

At their Dec. 14 meeting, the ABCA Board of Directors approved these program areas for public review. Interested people can review this phase of the Strategy and provide feedback through a survey which includes spaces for written comments. The feedback period for this phase of the document continues until Jan. 31st, 2024.

To learn more about the WBRMS, people can visit the: Public Consultation Page on the ABCA website.  If they have questions, they can contact staff by telephone at 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.


The Conservation Dinner community fundraiser and auction will take place on Thursday, Apr. 11, 2024. Tickets are available now.

Chris Keller, of the Exeter Lions Club, is Conservation Dinner Committee Chair. He said people are encouraged to buy tickets for themselves and guests. He also said tickets are a great gift during this holiday season.

People can buy their tickets from a Conservation Dinner Committee member or from the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) office. People can pay for their tickets by cheque, cash or credit card. They can even pay by e-Transfer. Anyone who is buying their ticket by e-Transfer, is asked to use the email address and include their mailing address and/or email address in the e-Transfer message box and specify if the payment is for a Conservation Dinner ticket or if the payment is a donation to the Dinner.

The Conservation Dinner takes place at South Huron Recreation Centre at 94 Victoria Street East in Exeter. Tickets are $100 each and patrons receive a charitable gift receipt, for income tax purposes, for a portion of that amount.

To buy tickets to the Conservation Dinner, or to donate, phone 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email or visit the ABCA office east of Exeter at 71108 Morrison Line (just south of Hwy 83).

The 2024 Conservation Dinner is the 34th event since 1990. This community fundraiser has raised more than $1.335 million for the community over 33 years. The Exeter Lions Club has been co-partner, with the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Foundation (ABCF) and the watershed community, on the Dinner, since 1991. Net profits are split 50-50 between community conservation projects of the ABCF and community conservation projects of the Exeter Lions Club.

The auction and dinner supports projects such as a family-friendly fishing derby, accessible nature trails in Bayfield, Clinton, Parkhill, Lucan, Arkona, Exeter, and Varna; opportunities for students to experience outdoor nature education; a $1,000 student environmental grant for students in local communities; a summer job at ABCA for a senior secondary school student; turtle monitoring and events in Port Franks and Ailsa Craig; aquatic habitat studies in Old Ausable Channel, Grand Bend; nature day camps; Owl Prowl; and parks and conservation areas.

The annual event features live and silent auctions of art and distinctive items such as travel packages and sports and entertainment memorabilia. The Dinner has special raffles, general raffles, appetizers, wine tasting, a wonderful meal, and fun and fellowship.

Find out more at or visit the ABCF’s webpage: Conservation Dinner.


Well owners may know that having well water tested is an important part of ensuring their family, friends and neighbors are safe but they may find it isn’t always as convenient as they would like. Getting a sample bottle locally and having someone deliver it to Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) for them, makes it much easier, according to organizers of water wise well testing events.

The Londesboro and District Lions Club is hosting a water sampling event on Thursday, Jan. 25  between 7-9 p.m. at Lions Hall, 282 Kings Road. Lions members are distributing sample bottles to homes in Londesborough prior to the event. Water testing sample bottles are also available for pickup, in advance of the event, at Nature’s Nest and Hensall District Co-op’s Londesborough locations. Sample bottles will be available at the event as well.

The Londesboro and District Lions Club is working with drinking water source protection to host the event. The Lions Club volunteers and source protection staff ensure samples are kept chilled and delivered to Huron Perth Public Health for testing the next morning. Experts on well protection and septic maintenance are to be available to provide information and answer questions at the event.

The Londesboro and District Lions Club encourages well owners to take advantage of this convenient way to check on the safety of their well water. When water sampling of private wells is made easier, more people will do it. That’s the idea behind the “Water Wise” events happening in some villages, hamlets and shoreline communities in the Ausable Bayfield Maitland Valley Source Protection Region.

In case of extreme winter weather, the snow date is Jan. 29. Please visit the: Londesboro Lions Facebook page for updates.

Other community groups who might be interested in partnering or hosting a “Water Wise” water sampling event can contact Mary Lynn MacDonald, Source Water Protection Program co-supervisor, by email  at or by phone 519 235-2610, or toll-free 1-888-286-2610, Ext. 247.  To learn more, visit the local drinking water source protection web page: Best Practices. The region is sharing information about the events on social media with #BestPractices and #WellWise and #WaterWise hashtags.

Remember This

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.

The arrival of snow always offers challenges to get the youngest children safely out and about but a search of the Museum’s artifacts would indicate that people were inventing and perfecting items to do so even in the 1800s…


This is a Child’s Snow Sled Stroller from 1888. It is a Portland-style cutter sleigh used to transport an infant. The sleigh is painted black with red wooden runners. The runners are edged with metal and supported with metal braces. The seat of the cutter is upholstered in black and white ticking fabric. There is a wooden handle used to push the sleigh. The handle is also painted black.




The property located at 5 The Square in Bayfield has undergone a metamorphosis of late receiving a welcome boost of energy from visionaries Amy Saunders and Torey Dean, who along with Amy’s husband, CJ, have transformed the heritage house into Suzie Blu Suites, a boutique style accommodation.

The creative duo are also the co-owners of the Wave Bar Hair Boutique that has made the move from the village’s Main Street to the rear half of the house. The addition of this on site salon adds to the uniqueness of the property as individuals or groups that book rooms can also book appointments to have their hair styled for their special occasion or event.

Saunders explained that the pair had the initial idea to open a bigger salon when they learned the property was available but they then decided to create a business that “could provide some extra income for their families and also show their kids how you can run your own business”.

Suzie Blu Suites offers three themed bedrooms as well as two bathrooms. The rooms can be booked individually on a nightly basis or all three rooms can be rented for a six night minimum.

The rooms have been decorated in themes that will be familiar to those acquainted with the village. The Marina room bears a nautical theme; The Market room reflects the Bayfield Farmers’ Market that happens every Friday across the street in Clan Gregor Square from Spring until Autumn; and the 565 Tours room is in honor of the many wineries and breweries that guests might visit during their stay. The Marina room on the lower level has its own ensuite bathroom while the other two rooms are located on the second floor with a shared bath. Each room has a Keurig coffee machine, bar fridge, microwave and television with WIFI available throughout.

There is also a common area downstairs for guests to relax in that offers a large screen television, comfy furnishings and a cozy fireplace.

Saunders explained that the interior design process was an amazing experience. A lover of all things bohemian, the finished look is outside the scope of what she would usually do.

“We tried to respect the heritage home in keeping with the charm of Bayfield and I think we nailed it,” said Saunders. “Everyone has their own style and we worked together to ensure we were both happy with the design outcome.”

The pair chose neutral and warm tones for their color scheme adding in wood elements to ensure light and airy spaces that are still cozy enough to feel like home.

The accommodations opened to accept bookings just before Christmas with their first guest staying the night of Dec. 23. The hair salon opened in its new location in early January.

The name, Suzie Blu Suites, was inspired by a number of factors.

“The name suggests that this is primarily a female driven business while the exterior of the building itself is painted in a heritage blue,” said Saunders. “And I came across a song written by Ben Harper, entitled ‘Suzie Blue’, that reminded me of this place and when I played it for Torey she was in total agreement that it should be the name.”

To learn more about Suzie Blu Suites or to book accommodation visit



Frozen Beach Branch

Frozen Beach Branch…by Jane Seifried

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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

I have been a fan of actor Henry Winkler nearly my whole life. I was six years-old when “Happy Days” first premiered and I lived for Tuesday night at 8 p.m. when I sat down on the floor of my family’s living room and sang along to the theme song ready to watch the antics of Ritchie, Potsie and Ralph Malph and, of course, the Fonz. (For the next decade I would remain a faithful viewer.)

I convinced my parents to take me to the drive-in to watch “Lords of Flatbush” in which Henry played a part. I recall my seven year-old self being disappointed in that film as there wasn’t enough Henry!  Capitalizing on his success on Happy Days the marketing team for the movie made it appear like he was in it more than he actually was. Jaded by Grade 2? Nope, I never lost faith in the Fonz. 

In our home, displayed on a shelf that I walk by everyday, I have the Fonz action figure, a tattered notebook bearing his likeness, a stack of trading cards and a boxed puzzle, among other little tributes, from that period of my life I recall so fondly. 

So when I discovered that Henry had recently published a memoir it quickly went to the top of my Christmas wish list and my step-kids were kind enough to grant my wish. 

I finished the book last night and for the first time in quite a long time I cried while reading the last chapter of a book. Not because it was a sad ending, far from it, I found myself crying because it was the last chapter. 

Some might say I had a crush on the Fonz when I was six years-old. Having finished his memoir I can now honestly say I didn’t. I think I felt Henry was a kindred spirit – the vulnerability that he brought to the character of the Fonz resonated more with me than his coolness ever did. 

Toward the end of the book he shares that finally after so many years he is no longer saddened by the fact that the world could only see him as this one character and has gradually come to accept what the Fonz has meant for so many everywhere. 

Two pages before the end of the book, when talking about interacting with the public he wrote:, “…Sure! Melody! How you doin’?”  I stared at that sentence for quite a bit of time…of all the names and all the variations of spellings…he picked that one as an example?

My six year-old self wouldn’t have doubted it for a moment. – Melody 

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