A Mobile Concert Experience

By Staff

August 9th, 2023



THE CONCERT TRUCK will be presenting 10 free 30-minute performances across Burlington.

See it is as a Mobile Concert Experience taking place across the city brtween Wednesday August 9, through to Sunday  August 13, 2023

Burloak Park: Wed Aug 9 at Noon

Berton Park: Wed Aug 9 at 7pm

Chartwell Lakeshore Retirement (5314 Lakeshore Rd.): Thu Aug 10 at Noon

BPAC Outdoor Plaza: Thu Aug 10 at 2pm

Burlington Mall: Fri Aug 11 at 4pm

Civic Square: Fri Aug 11 at 6pm

BPAC Outdoor Plaza: Sat Aug 12 at 1pm and 3:30pm

BPAC Outdoor Plaza: Sun Aug 13 at 1pm and 3:30pm

All Concert Truck events are free to attend!

The Concert Truck is a mobile music venue that strengthens communities by redefining the concert experience and making live music accessible to all. Created by pianists Nick Luby and Susan Zhang, the project aims to engage diverse communities and audiences nationwide with thoughtful, timely programming, and works with arts organizations of all sizes to build a critical presence in their communities.

The Concert Truck is a 16-foot box truck and a fully functioning mobile concert hall, complete with lights, sound system, and piano. Nick, Susan and the truck have toured across the country, partnering with arts organizations to help build their presence in the communities they serve by presenting concerts in city streets, music and arts festivals, schools, neighbourhoods, parks and beyond.


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We talk about community: this weekend we saw it in action

By Pepper Parr

August 7th, 2023



It took Daryl Fowler just about a month to pull together the people that worked with him on getting the local food drive going.

When he set things up for the Friday start he asked the Burlington Food Bank for a hamper to put what was donated in. They delivered a big blue container – mid day Saturday he knew they were going to need more – not sure the Food Bank would be open on the weekend – he turned to his network and before the end of the day three more bins were in place.

It became really clear – Darryl leaned on his network – people he deals with on a regular basis and they all answered the call.

Stuff just kept coming in – $3000 in gift cards.

Daryl & Hannah Fowler – have three children; a four year old, a 2 ½ and a 1 ½. Hanna was a stay at home Mother but is looking forward to returning to the bank she has worked at for a number of years.

Daryl bought their first home in Hamilton, did very well on the sale of that home in 2017 which made it financially possible to move to Burlington. They don’t even think about moving anywhere else.

Daryl has been in HVAC all his working life. There were some labour difficulties during the early part of Covid and Darryl thought this was a good time to strike out on his own.

He describes himself as a one man shop with good talent that he uses on an as needed basis.

Four bins and half a tonne of food later – the photo op was earned.

“I am a people person, I like doing things with and for people – being on my own means I don’t have to spend time managing staff – all my effort goes into keeping customers happy.

He rents space at a storage facility – thinks maybe at some point he will open up a shop but at this point he thinks working on his own is best for him and his customers.

Darryl Fowler takes the shop with him when calling on a customer.

What he is finding however is that the cost of everything has increased: gas, parts, food – he knows everyone is feeling the same pinch.

He makes heavy use of social media and has a five star Google rating.  His approach is “if they support me – I support them.

Julie Neal, who worked at setting a record for a bottle drive she and her husband took on in 2021 was part of that supporting network – a bit of a cluster there.

Burlington Together with its massive following was a part of making this happen. Burlington Dads were there as well.

These groups work independently; at the same time they are part of a collective that are more than an arms length from city hall.

This is what real community is all about.


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Burnout? Lean in by Stretching Back

By Pepper Parr

August 5th, 2023



Does the prospect of a week spent lazing somewhere warm, book in hand, fill you with joy?

That’s how I feel—until the holiday begins and I realize I’ve forgotten to answer an email. Then I see two messages sitting, accusingly, in my drafts folder. I start tapping out a quick list of reminders for when I get back. This feels nicely productive, until suddenly the list has 27 items.

Nice way to spend an afternoon – something on the light side.

If you have a demanding job, proper breaks are vital. Psychoanalysts explain why relaxing can be so hard for people who feel “burnt out”—and argue that it’s not just our jobs that overwork our minds.

You could start by writing a great out-of-office reply. But try not to overthink it: perfectionism is out of favour with workers and companies alike.

No wonder so many employees are quiet quitting. Or are you more of a “cyberloafer”? If so you may be more productive than you think.

This summer, lean in by stretching back.

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Arborists will take part in competitive tree climbing

By Staff

August 4th, 2023



If you thought arborists were people who came out to look at your trees and give you some advice and direction and at times told you you were not permitted to do what you wanted to do – pause and see them as sports people who climb trees competitively.

The will be competing at LaSalle park mid September – mark your calendars – this should be something exciting to watch.

The Ontario Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture (ISA Ontario) hosts its annual tree climbing championship Friday September 15 & Saturday September 16, 2023 at LaSalle Park 50 North Shore Blvd E, Burlington. At this fun, competitive, spectator-friendly event, professional tree climbers from across Ontario will compete for the title of top climber in the province.


Krista Strating: 2018 International Tree Climbing Champion from the ISA Ontario Chapter.

This unique event showcases arborists in action demonstrating the exceptional skills required for professional tree work. Competitors will perform five different preliminary events simulating the skills required to work safely and efficiently in the trees. From a timed speed climb, a targeted throwline toss, a work climb, an ascent event using specialized equipment and an aerial rescue, each challenge gives climbers a chance to demonstrate their incredible skills.

The climbers who score the highest during these preliminary contests will compete in the Masters’ Challenge. In this final round, the winners (top male and female) will be crowned the Ontario Champions. They’ll earn the honour of representing Ontario at the 2023 International Tree Climbing Championship (ITCC).

This FREE event is open to the public and starts 1:00 PM on Friday September 15 and runs through Saturday September 16 at 5:00 PM.

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Saturday afternoon and on into the night - it will be the place to be: Spencer Smith Park for the Freedom Celebration

By Staff

August 3rd, 2023



Saturday, August 5th at Spencer Smith Park.

This is not something you want to miss.

The 2023 Halton Freedom Celebration Festival is celebrating the 189th year of Emancipation throughout the British Commonwealth, bringing together musical acts, children’s activities, cultural art, food, crafts, and heritage, historical, genealogical, and multi-cultural groups, promoting inclusivity and community integration.

The multi-cultural ambience is infused with Canadian R&B, Reggae, Soul, Funk, African, Ska, Soca and Pop Artists with some of our country’s finest musicians.

Festivities are from 1 p.m. to 11 p.m. Please bring lawn chairs, sunshade, appetite, and dancewear for optimal enjoyment.

Click here to learn more about the 2023 participating musicians.

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What’s open and closed at the City of Burlington for the Civic holiday on Aug. 7

By Staff

July 31st, 2023



City of Burlington administrative services will be closed for the Civic holiday on Monday, Aug. 7. For a list of which City services and facilities are available on the long weekend, please see the summary below or visit burlington.ca.

Fireworks reminder
Fireworks are not permitted to be set off on the August Civic holiday. As per the City’s bylaw, family (low-hazard) fireworks can only be set off on Canada Day and Victoria Day. For more information regarding who to contact if you have a personal safety concern related to the use of fireworks, visit burlington.ca/fireworks.
City Service Holiday Closure Information

Animal Services The Animal Shelter at 2424 Industrial St. will be closed to appointments on Monday, Aug. 7. To report an animal control related emergency on a holiday, please call 905-335-7777.

Transit on the Sunday Schedule for the 7th

Burlington Transit Burlington Transit will operate on a Sunday schedule on Monday, Aug. 7. For real-time bus information and schedules, visit myride.burlingtontransit.ca.

The Downtown Transit Terminal, at 430 John St., and Specialized Dispatch will be closed on Monday, Aug. 7.

City Hall Service Burlington and the Building, Renovating and Licensing counter on the main floor of City Hall at 426 Brant St., will be closed to all appointments and walk-in service on Monday, Aug. 7.

Many service payments are available online at burlington.ca/onlineservices

For online development services:
MyFiles can be used by residents who have applied for Pre-Building Approval after April 24, 2023. Once an account has been created, applicants can check the status of their files at burlington.ca/MyFiles.

Halton Court Services – Provincial Offences Office Court administration counter services at 4085 Palladium Way will be closed on Monday, Aug. 7.
Except for the Civic holiday closures, telephone payments are available at 905-637-1274, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. All in-person services are available from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday. Many services are also available by email at burlingtoncourt@burlington.ca or online at Halton Court Services. Payment of Provincial Offences fines is available 24/7 at www.paytickets.ca.

You now have to pay for parking at the Beachway on weekends. You get a permit if you live in the Region.

Parking Free parking is available downtown, on the street, in municipal lots and in the parking garage (414 Locust St.) on weekends and holidays, including the Civic holiday on Monday, Aug. 7.

• The Waterfront parking lots (east and west at 1286 Lakeshore Rd.) do not provide free parking on holidays
• Parking exemptions are required to park overnight on city streets and for longer than five hours. Visit burlington.ca/parkingexemptions
Paid parking is in effect at Beachway Park (1100 and 991 Lakeshore Rd.) on weekends only (including holidays) using HONK Mobile
Please make an online reservation using Park Pass to visit Lowville Park on weekends. Reservations are free and available in three-hour time slots

Recreation Programs and Facilities Drop-In Swimming
Nelson Pool and Splash Park, Mountainside Pool and Splash Park, and LaSalle Wading Pool and Splash Park are open for swimming through the weekend and on the Civic holiday (weather permitting). Outdoor pool lap swims and recreational swims are walk-in only, with no reservations.

Indoor pools swims vary over the weekend, including a free swim presented by Access Storage on Saturday, Aug. 5, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., at Centennial Pool (5151 News St.). Pre-registration is recommended. Registration opens online at burlington.ca/dropinandplay for residents seven days in advance. Walk-ups are welcome if capacity remains.

Drop-In Skating
Appleby Ice Centre is open on Saturday, Aug. 5 for drop-in skating and recreational hockey programs. For schedules and registration please visit burlington.ca/dropinandplay.

This is a large part of what Burlington is about. Easy evenings at the Band shell listening to music. Now if taxes can be kept reasonable – you might be able to continue living in the city.

Concerts in the Park
Head over to the Central Park Bandshell on Sunday, Aug. 6 at 7:30 p.m. to enjoy an entertaining evening of music. Bring your own lawn chair and blanket. The concert series runs each Wednesday and Sunday evening from 7:30 to 9 p.m. (weather permitting). For more information including performer listings visit burlington.ca/concerts.

Splash Pads
The City’s nine splash pads are located throughout the city and are free to use. To find a splash pad near you visit burlington.ca/splashpads.

Outdoor Activities
Burlington has a wide variety of outdoor activities to enjoy with your family during the long weekend including:
• trails and multi-use paths
• parks and playgrounds.
• picnic site reservations for La Salle or Hidden Valley Park
Find out more at burlington.ca/outdoorplay.

Good golf course – but why is the city paying for some of the upkeep? Link to that story https://burlingtongazette.ca/taxpayer-funds-are-expected-to-support-the-golf-course-going-forward/

Tyandaga Golf Course is open for the season and tee times can be booked online at tyandagagolf.com or by calling 905-336-0005, ext. 2.

Play Lending Library
Our Lending Library has a variety of outdoor and indoor play equipment available to borrow in time for the long weekend at no charge. From archery to wiffle ball, and Kanjam to pickleball. Lifejackets in various sizes are also available for your next outing on the water. Check out burlington.ca/playlending for details.

Customer Service
Recreation, Community and Culture customer service is available to assist you in person at recreation facility counters during program times.
Customer service is also available:
• By email at liveandplay@burlington.ca
• By phone at 905-335-7738, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday (including Aug. 5, 6, 7).

Roads, Parks and Forestry The administrative office will be closed on Monday, Aug. 7. Essential services will be provided as required.

Links to related stories:

Public money paying for maintenance of the golf course


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Begin thinking about what the redesign of the adaptive reuse of the recently acquired Robert Bateman High School should look like

By Staff

July 24th, 2023



City has announced dates for visioning exercises on the redesign of the adaptive reuse of the recently acquired Robert Bateman High School.  The events are being called Community Visioning Workshops.

Dates are

August 22,  Appelby Ice Centre  7:00 -9:00

August 23, LaSalle Park  1:00- 300

Don’t expect to see council members at the event unless they are going to drive back to Burlington from London where most are expected to take part in the three day annual AMO conference.

The city now owns the property- they have rented out much of the space to the HAlton District School Board and Brock University.

The city has asked people to register to attend:  use  –  getinvolved@burlington.ca to register

Additional events are scheduled for October 18, Tansley Woods  7:00-9:00 and a Zoom events October 19 at  7:00 pm

An alert Gazette reader points out that community engagement was expected to take place in  Q2 2023.  The reader added that Phase 1 of the project was expected to be complete in September 2024 not September 2025.


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Learn how to harvest seeds from your garden this year - then use them next year. Free at the Public Library

By Staff

July 20th, 2023



You spent the time you needed to plant your garden and in the weeks ahead you will harvest and put some fresh produce on the table.

What about the seeds for next year’s garden?

Get the most out of your flourishing garden plants by harvesting their seeds this summer.

In this workshop, get to know the basics of seed collection, cleaning, sorting, and storage. Learn about cross pollination and ways to avoid surprises next season.

The talk covers popular vegetables as well as ornamental plants—and you’ll create some secure, no-tape seed packets to take home!

Sunday, July 30th, 2:00 to 3:00 pm

Link to sign up HERE

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Jazz on the Patio. Another great line up for the 8th year

By Pepper Parr

July 18th, 2023


For those who want a bite to eat – Curb Side will be there.


It is the best summer event deal in the city.  Might not draw the mobs that Sound of Music pulls in but for a great entertainment day – ‘Jazz on the Plaza’ is tops

Highly anticipated annual community event, showcases  a series of emerging and established Canadian musicians in an al fresco setting.

Tammy Fox, Executive Director of the operation has taken it all a step further with the inclusion of a Food Truck.  Curbside will be on hand for those that want a little more than the bar offers.

The performers for each of the two day event are:

Saturday August 12th

Elise LeGrow – a Canadian vocal powerhouse

Sat Aug 12, 2023 at 2pm

With a raspy, spellbinding style and elegant, dynamic mystique, Elise LeGrow is the Canadian powerhouse defying pop culture chronology, wowing Questlove, Betty Wright, and a crew of R&B legends along the way.

Heather Bambrick

Sat Aug 12, 2023 at 4pm

Heather Bambrick, one of Canada’s top Jazz vocalists, has collaborated with some of the best around and has appeared as a guest performer with numerous Jazz ensembles. If you’re a CBC listener you will know her well

Sunday August 13th

Ori Dagan

Sun Aug 13, 2023 at 2pm

Award-winning jazz singer-songwriter Ori Dagan has attracted a dedicated and growing audience, both in his native Toronto and internationally.

Micah Barnes and Billy Newton Davis

Micah Barnes and Billy Newton Davis: Former Nylons in Concert
Sun Aug 13, 2023 at 4pm

This show features Billy Newton Davis performing “Sammy & Me” about his real-life experience working with Sammy Davis Jr., and Micah Barnes taking you on the roller coaster ride of his career in “Micah at The Sands Hotel”!


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Celebrate 150 years of Burlington’s rich and unique heritage during Heritage Week, Aug. 5-12

By Staff

July 17th, 2023



Burlington’s Heritage Advisory Committee invites you to take part in an exciting lineup of activities for Heritage Week, Aug. 5-12, 2023. In honour of Burlington’s 150th anniversary, a special week of heritage events are planned, focusing on sites that have shaped Burlington throughout its history.

A detailed schedule of all the events taking place during Heritage Week, including locations and how to register, is set out below:

Registration is open between July 10 to 28. All are welcome.

Schedule of events

Heritage Week is organized by the members of Heritage Burlington, in collaboration with the Burlington Historical Society, Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlington Public Library, Burlington Museums, Beach Canal Lighthouse, Freeman Station, Halton Black History Awareness Society, Heritage Services – Halton Region, and David Craig of History Pix, along with a growing list of other organizations.

Michele Camacho, Chair, Heritage Burlington

Michele Camacho, Chair, Heritage Burlington, one of the really good examples of what an Advisory Committee can achieve said:  “Heritage Week is a time to celebrate the many aspects of Burlington’s various heritages. The celebrations are even more special this year, as Burlington celebrates its sesquicentennial anniversary. Heritage Burlington is so glad to be able to welcome the community to take part in a fantastic lineup of events to mark this milestone. Thank you to our civic partners, community groups, and volunteers who make learning more about the history of our community interesting and fun. A special thanks to Marsha Paley, Co-Vice Chair of the Heritage Burlington Advisory Committee for her leadership.”


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What Has Changed a Year later After a New Online Gambling Legislation in Ontario Was Adopted

By Eva Johnson

July 17th, 2023



After a major legislative update of Ontario online gambling laws in April 2022, Ontario became a place of rapid industry development as dozens of online casino operators acquired the local license for legal performance.

Already in a couple of months after the legislation update, the industry showed a major boost and Ontario became a successful case in Canada and globally.

This positive case allows us to make suggestions and predictions about the development of the online gambling industry in the province.
General Expectations for the Online Gambling Industry in the Province

Canada has always been gambling-friendly.

Canada has always been gambling-friendly, but Ontario has pioneered among other provinces by introducing its new legislation in 2022. Already in a couple of months, the Ontario gambling industry saw an increase in revenues, taxes, and positive competition.

Based on this fact alone, there are several predictions that can be made about the future of the industry and the licensed online casinos in Ontario.

Increased Revenue
The legalization and regulation of online gambling is already resulting in a significant increase in revenue for the province, as more people will be able to access and participate in Internet gambling activities legally.

Not only do Internet casino operators make more money because local players are more willing to try their casino sites out but also more taxes are paid to the province and charities.

Healthier Competition
With the legalization of online gambling, more companies will enter the market, resulting in increased competition. AGCO has already closed the transition period when operators could request the local license, so the number of Internet casinos in the province will not show unlimited growth.

However, the increased number of legal competitors will lead to better services and products for customers, as companies try to outdo one another.

Good jobs in a safe environment are part of what makes gaming as attractive as it is in Canada

More Jobs
According to the gambling statistics, the online gambling industry is likely to create more jobs in Ontario, as companies set up operations and hire staff to manage their Internet platforms. Of course, not much is needed to run an Internet casino locally because it only means access to the services while all the staff can be located elsewhere. However, legal online gambling means more control and supervision in the corresponding agencies that will hire staff.

Also, Live Dealer facilities may want to hire local Dealers for Ontario players, and so on. Who knows what new type of gambling entertainment will be invented next in a transparent and competitive market?

Enhanced Responsible Gambling Measures
With the legalization and regulation of Internet gambling, the government is likely to introduce more responsible gambling measures to protect players. This could include increased education on gambling addiction, self-exclusion programs, and limits on the amount of money players can spend.

AGCO and iGO have strict Responsible gambling policies and requirements that all operators must meet, and it is very likely that with time, these measures will become even more specific and elaborate.

Potential for Increased Gambling Addiction
While responsible gambling measures are likely to be introduced, there is a risk that the legalization of Internet gambling could result in an increase in gambling addiction. The government will need to be vigilant in monitoring the industry and ensuring that appropriate measures are in place to prevent and treat addiction.

It is too early to provide any adequate statistical data about addictive gambling issues increased in Ontario since April 2022 but this seems to be a legit consequence of more available and affordable gambling entertainment.

Technology has become a large part of the growth of gaming in Canada

Technological Advancements
The Internet gambling industry is likely to continue to evolve and develop new technologies to enhance the user experience.

This could include virtual reality casinos, Live dealer games, and more. Interestingly, many technologies are developed as entertainment first because people are ready to pay for fun whereas they are not ready to pay for useful things.

Some streaming technologies, KYC and verification procedures, payment technologies, and other inventions for Internet casinos can eventually turn out useful in other niches.

Potential for Increased Tax Revenue
The legalization and regulation of online gambling could result in increased tax revenue for the province, which could be used to fund public services and infrastructure.

International Competition

Ontario’s online gambling industry could face competition from other jurisdictions, both within Canada and internationally. Of course, being the first, Ontario is now a dream-come-true province for all Canadian players.

However, as other provinces and states follow (which can really happen with time!) Internet casino operators may find other locations more attractive for licensed services, and Ontario will stop being a buzzword in the online gambling industry.

Final Thoughts
Ontario shows a positive example to all provinces in Canada and other jurisdictions that were reluctant to upgrade their gambling legislation and preferred to turn a blind eye to the gray zone in which gambling currently operates in the majority of countries. Therefore, it is easy to understand that Ontario is being watched closely to analyze its case.

However, the industry is rather unpredictable, and new inventions can create additional nuances in the near future – like the introduction of AI technologies did for many industries. Therefore, while Ontario seems to be managing well, it is still too early to state that its example will be followed massively.

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Who got Neighbourhood Community Matching Funds

By Pepper Parr

July 14th, 2023



The City announced the 2023 recipients of the Neighbourhood Community Matching Fund (NCMF).

It was a number of years ago but these four lads, working with their parents got funding to improve the ball diamond at the park next to their school.

The fund was created to inspire Burlington residents to actively champion projects in the community to improve, build and strengthen the social contract and enhance the quality of life for everyone.

Bringing neighbourhoods and communities together to make new connections and create a sense of belonging is just as important as the project itself.

The funds objectives are:

  • Improve, build and strengthen Burlington neighbourhoods
  • Create a greater sense of belonging
  • Foster individual well-being and community pride
  • Inspire residents to become more actively involved in the community
  • Build stronger relationships

Public Pollinator Garden ($3,640)

This project aims to create a public pollinator garden at Port Nelson United Church. The pollinator garden will provide a safe and nurturing environment for pollinators while enhancing the beauty of the area.

Burlington Tennis Club ($5,000)

This project aims to install and provide outdoor public Wi-Fi and web cameras in the west end of Central Park, near the Burlington Tennis Club.

Sycamore Park Neighbours ($9,981)

This project aims to build a bumping space within Sycamore Park in the Palmer community. Bumping spaces are places where people can “bump” into neighbours. It allows informal interactions with community members, meet-ups with friends and forming friendships and connections. The project includes three round metal picnic tables, one of which will be accessible for those who use wheelchairs, and a sensory garden. Sensory gardens are intended to stimulate sight, sound and touch.

On balance this is a good program.  On occasion a bit too much goes to well established community groups but on occasation the department takes a chance on something different – the bumping stations could be interesting.

For more information on the Neighbourhood Community Matching Fund, visit burlington.ca/matchingfund.



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Stroller Tours of Art Gallery offered each Thursday - from 10 - 10:30 Just show up

By Staff

July 13th, 2023



Are they having fun?

If you’re looking for some summer fun but aren’t part of a summer camp this year, the Art Gallery of Burlington is offering Stroller Tours each Thursday from 10 – 10:30 AM.

They meet inside the doors of the Lakeshore Roads entrance and for the first ten minutes of touring, ten minutes of story time, then ten more minutes of exploring.

For those who have not yet had an opportunity to introduce their children ti an art gallery – this is a nice way to get them started.

A special way to experience art together.


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By Staff

July 13th, 2023



The Burlington Performing Arts Centre (‘BPAC’) is seeking local performance-based artists and collectives to participate in our 2023 Culture Days ‘Live & Local’ Artist Showcase on Saturday, September 23rd at BPAC.

Selected artists will also be considered for participation in BPAC’s 23/24 Season ‘Live & Local’ Series.  This call is open to all Burlington-based artists, in any performing arts discipline.  This includes, but is not limited to, music (all genres), dance, theatre, comedy and family entertainment.

Burlington-area emerging, community-based artists are invited to apply, and we encourage applications from Indigenous, equity-seeking and racialized communities.  The creation of BPAC’s Live & Local Artist Development Initiative program is intended to support local artists and to connect artists and the community through activation, engagement and presentation opportunities.

Applicants should be Burlington-based or strongly affiliated with the City.  Examples would include artists who work, live or go to school within the City, or who are connected to the Indigenous heritage of the land.

Applications are now being accepted. Deadline for submission is Friday, August 4th, 2023.

The application form can be accessed HERE


  • What is your performing arts discipline? (Music, Singing, Dance, Theatre, Drama, etc.)
  • Provide a list of past performances in the Burlington area (indicate paid or volunteer)
  • Describe your artistic goals and how the LIVE & LOCAL program could contribute to your success as an emerging artist (Max. 100 words).
  • Supporting Materials – Please provide two (2) digital samples of your work and website link.

Artists will be provided with an honorarium and technical support.  Showcase performances will be approximately 30 minutes in length each, and BPAC staff will determine which venue is most suitable for your showcase performance (Community Studio Theatre, Main Theatre, Family Lobby or Outdoor Plaza).

BPAC’s Live & Local Series is generously sponsored by Daniel Durst of Desjardins Insurance.




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The Swan was one of two short stories given first place in the Write Hear. Write Now 18+ category

By Staff

July 11th 2023



The Write Here. Write now contest received an incredible number of entries this year—they doubled last year’s total!  The creators ranged in age from 10 all the way up to 93.

The Gazette is publishing the two winners in the short story 18+ category.  The first is below, the other will follow later in the week.

The winners in each category are:


10-12: Kayla Gareau, Dream experts, Dream catchers, Dream chasers

13-17: Griffin Dekker, Beginning of an End

18+: Denny Williams, Reflections on pet ownership

Short Stories

10-12: Avery Parkes, Ali in Winterland

13-17: Mia Greene, Nefelibata

18+: Jennifer Filipowicz, The Swan and Gregory Blount, Cooper Falls


10-12: Brody Hanks, Muffinhead and Bagel-Brain

13-17: Ali Thompson, The Duck

18+: Dominique Bowler-Brown, Elephant Bones

The Swan by Jennifer Filipowicz

“Don’t touch that.”

Jayda pulled her hand away instantly, as thought her mother’s voice had the power to move her like a marionette. Still the dead swan beckoned, as pristine as it had been in life, and Jayda felt a desperate urge to stroke its pure white feathers. She watched out of the corner of her eye until her mother’s attention was diverted to the windsurfers sailing across Burlington Bay, then Jayda reached out and stroked the twisted neck.

The swan was beautiful, like snow white in her coffin, and like the handsome prince, Jayda kissed the majestic dead bird on its black beak, just below its vacant staring eye.


“I was just pretending,” Jayda said, the coolness of the beak still on her lips.

Mom rummaged in her beach bag, pulled out a package of disinfectant wipes and frantically wiped Jayda’s face and hands. “We don’t know how the swan died,” Mom said. “It might have a disease.”

“It doesn’t look sick,” Jayda said. “Just dead.” “We don’t know, so we don’t touch it just in case.”

Jayda nodded solemnly. “Can I keep a feather as a souvenir?” Jayda yanked out a tail feather from the corpse and held it up.

“Jayda,” Mom answered neutrally.

Jayda brushed the soft feather across her face. A man wearing swim trunks walked his golden retriever along the beach. The dog lunged toward the dead swan, causing the man great physical exertion as he held his companion back. Finally the man in the swim trunks successfully turned back the way he came. Jayda watched the dog gallop along the beach, then turned her attention back to the swan.

Suddenly she got a wonderful idea.

“Mom!” she exclaimed. “If we went and got my wagon we could take the swan with us!”

“No, Jayda,” Mom said, her voice tired.

“But it will look so nice in my room,” Jayda said. “And I won’t even touch it, just look.”

“It will rot.”

Jayda imagined the swan as its body shriveled, maggots eating holes in its flesh, until only a skeleton remained. “Neat.” “It will smell really bad.”

Jayda considered this. “Worse than Daddy’s feet?” “Infinitely worse.”

“The birds at the ROM don’t smell or rot.” “The museum birds are stuffed.”

“Can we–”


Swan at the LaSalle Park waterfront

“You don’t know what I was asking.” “We can’t have this swan stuffed.” “Why not?”

“Because I don’t know a taxidermist.”

Jayda’s mother stared out over the water again, one of the windsurfers lost his balance and fell into the waves. His head popped up again and he held onto his board.

“Mom, what’s a taxidermist?”

“A person who stuffs dead animals.” “I want to be a taxidermist!”

“You can be anything you want to, Sweetie.”

“I have an idea!” Jayda said. “We can take the swan home and I can practice stuffing it!”


“I’ll wear my paint smock, so I won’t get any blood on me.” “I’ll let you keep the feather,” Mom said.

“I can’t stuff a feather, Mom.”

“You can stuff things when you’re older.”

Jayda kicked at the sand so that beige and grey dust sprinkled over the swan corpse. Then she crouched down and brushed the sand away until the swan was pristine again. Her mother was ready with the wipes. “It’s time to go home,” Mom said.

They walked together along Burlington Beach to the playground near where their car was parked. Jayda glanced back at the swan, now a splotch of white in the distance.


“Yes, Jayda?”

“Can we come back every day to watch the swan rot?”

We tell our readers a little more about Jennifer Filipowicz later today

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Gregory Blount shares first place in the 18+ Library writing contest for Cooper Falls

By Staff

July 9th, 2023



The Write Here. Write Now contest received an incredible number of entries this year—they doubled last year’s total!  The creators ranged in age from 10 all the way up to 93.

The Gazette is publishing the two winners in the short story 18+ category.  The first is below, the other will follow later in the week.

The winners in each category are:


10-12: Kayla Gareau, Dream experts, Dream catchers, Dream chasers

13-17: Griffin Dekker, Beginning of an End

18+: Denny Williams, Reflections on pet ownership

Short Stories

10-12: Avery Parkes, Ali in Winterland

13-17: Mia Greene, Nefelibata

18+: Jennifer Filipowicz, The Swan and Gregory Blount, Cooper Falls


10-12: Brody Hanks, Muffinhead and Bagel-Brain

13-17: Ali Thompson, The Duck

18+: Dominique Bowler-Brown, Elephant Bones

Gregory Blount proves to be imaginative and quite a story teller.

Well worth a read.

Chief Librarian Lita Barrie explained that two of the short stories were so good they decided to make both winners.

The were certainly right.  The story reminds me of Stephen Leacock’s Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town


It was a sunny June day. Russell Stewart and I were cutting through Memorial Park on our way home from the falls. As usual, I wasn’t feeling very sunny myself. There were two spots up at the river where a kid could test their courage, Chicken Run and Dead Man’s Bluff. Chicken Run was about ten feet over the water, and Dead Man’s Bluff, at the top of the falls, was about twenty-five feet high. Russell, a freckle faced redhead, wasn’t the only boy in town brave enough to run right off Dead Man’s Bluff, but he was the only one who could do it blindfolded. I, on the other hand, had never progressed past Chicken Run with my eyes wide open. I would sometimes crawl out along the slippery rocks of Dead Man’s Bluff, but one look into that dark green water far, far below with the roar of the falls drowning out all other sounds and I would start shaking so bad I’d have to crawl right back away from the edge. Russell was always pushing me to try things. Life was easy for him and he saw no good reason why it shouldn’t be easy for me too. We were opposites, but we were also best friends.

On our way home we passed the old cannon near the gazebo in the centre of Memorial park.

Russell stopped and made an announcement, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, for our final performance this afternoon we proudly present Sam Cooper, the Human Cannonball! He will astound you with his amazing 500-foot flight into this glass of water.’ He held out a pretend glass of water. ‘Sam, do you have any last words?’

‘Russell, this is silly, come on?’

‘Come on yourself! Need I remind you this is not Dead Man’s Bluff, Sam. Do you have any last words?’
I knew when I was beat and announced, ‘I would like to dedicate this feat to Mary-Anne McCovey the prettiest girl in the universe!’
Russell and I both had a major crush on Mary-Anne McCovey.

‘Dream on,’ said Russell, ‘and now observe ladies and gentlemen as the fearless Human Cannonball enters the cannon. Get in the cannon Sam.’

‘Come on Russell.’

‘Come on yourself Sam! Need I remind you that … ‘
‘ … this is not Dead Man’s Bluff,’ I finished. Okay.’

And I lowered myself into the cannon feet first.

And Russell pulled the lever.

Now one fact that neither of us was aware of at the time was that the park caretaker, Elroy Stubbs, had made no mistakes in his job these 25 years. Two days earlier, he was loading that very cannon for a 21-gun salute for Flag Day. Elroy carefully placed the charges in the cannon, ‘1, 2, 3,’ he counted; I want you to remember that last number, 3.
At that very moment, the Mayor of Cooper Falls, a round and soft young man by the name of Junior Follows (who incidentally was up for re-election that year) ceremoniously marched out to the cannon where Elroy was working to present him with his Error-Free Certificate.

“Elroy Stubbs,” the Mayor interrupted, “For 25 years of error-free service I hereby present you with this lovely certificate. I hope I can count on your vote, Elroy.” Whereupon, he handed the certificate over to the astonished Elroy, shook his hand and marched back to City Hall.

Elroy folded up the certificate, shoved it into his pocket, spit, and with a puzzled look on his face, resumed loading the cannon, ‘3, 4, 5, 6,’ etcetera.
The upshot of this was that after the ceremony was over, there was still one charge left in the cannon. And as I climbed in, and Russell pulled the lever to “pretend” fire the cannon there was an ear-shattering … BOOM!

Several things happened very quickly at this point. The dinner plate sized circle of blue sky that I was looking at out the end of the cannon was instantly replaced by a scenic view of Cooper Falls from about 300 feet up. My body was going quite a bit faster than my brain at this point. In fact my brain was still trying to work out how I could be seeing all this from inside a cannon.

As my body exited the muzzle of the cannon there was a loud THWACK as my clothing exploded. Singed articles of clothing drifted to the ground not more than ten feet from the end of the cannon, shirt, socks, sneakers, bathing suit.

Deafened, Russell froze on the spot with his hand on the lever, his mouth hanging open, and his red hair standing straight up. Then he looked into the barrel and saw nothing but a bit of smoke. He must have thought the clothes were all that was left of me. Then he high-tailed it, screaming, across the park to the police station where he commenced to blubbering something about shooting his friend. When it was obvious no one there understood a word he was saying, he grabbed one of the deputies, and with superhuman strength carried him kicking and screaming into the park.

By an extraordinary coincidence, three blocks away, the beautiful Mary-Anne McCovey was having a pool party. There were a dozen girls from our class sitting along the edge of her pool with their hands carefully placed on their thighs and stomachs, and so on, marking the furthest splash up to that point in the cannonball contest. Mary-Anne McCovey was standing on the diving board about to take her turn.

At about 500 feet, I felt a queasy sense of weightlessness. Time itself seemed to slow down. I began to fall.

That was when I learned something about myself that I hold dear to this very day. I did not scream hysterically, and my life did not pass before my eyes. The screamers and those whose lives pass before their eyes do not often survive the predicaments they are in. It is the people who spend this short time planning who, on occasion, survive. I found out that I was a planner.

I looked down and saw a tiny rectangle of blue in front of me. Could it possibly be a swimming pool? And could it possibly be directly in line with the cannon in Memorial Park? Was there any chance that I might land in a swimming pool? I began to move my body as I had seen stunt men in the movie serials do, head down, feet up, slow tumble to land flat on my back.

But as I picked up speed, I realized that even if I was lucky enough to land in water, I had better not land flat on my back so at the last moment brought my knees up and held them in my arms … SPLOOSH!”

The resulting splash blew all twelve girls flat against the fence, and Mary-Anne who you will recall was on the diving board at the time found herself looking down from her neighbour’s roof. I couldn’t climb out of the pool on account of the new water level, and had to be rescued by Mary-Anne McCovey and her friends, which they did shortly after they rescued Mary-Anne from her neighbour’s roof. I would have been out quite a bit quicker if the girls had been able to control their laughter.

Around this time, the town’s three deputies were dragging Russell to jail for his own protection. And old Abraham Johansen, a farmer on the outskirts of town, who had been scanning the horizon and wishing for rain for more than five weeks, was burning his copy of the Farmer’s Almanac. He thought he heard thunder, and ventured out onto his porch. Several drops of water splashed his face. He looked up at the clear blue sky, and grumbled, ‘Very funny.’

I won the cannonball contest, although the girl who was ahead at that point challenged it briefly on a technicality, and for several weeks my rear end swelled up to four times its usual size.

You see, in the end, that trip to the falls changed Russell and me forever. About a month later I went up to the falls and easily leaped off of Dead Man’s Bluff.
Russell was never the same again. Although we remained friends, he never again went near the cannon in Memorial Park. He never even went near the park if he could avoid it. However every now and then down at the gas station where he works, a car backfires, and he loses about a week of his lifespan.

I was fortunate enough to marry Mary-Anne McCovey, and periodically, whenever I get too serious about things, she’s kind enough to lean up close and whisper into my ear …BOOM!

“Oh yeah, and Elroy Stubbs had to return his certificate to the Mayor

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City sticks with the plans it has for cooling centres

By Staff

July7th, 2023



Yesterday we published an article on how different communities were handling a situation where the world had reached its hottest day in recorded history July 3rd and then see an even hotter day on the 4th

The article was an in depth look at what communities are up against when record setting heat condition prevail. Included in the article was mention of a book: The Heat Will Kill You First,  in which veteran journalist Jeff Goodell makes a searing case that most of us think about extreme heat is all wrong, and to disastrous effect.

We wondered what Burlington was doing in the way of revising its plans or at least discussing with the Leadership Team what the city and its citizens might be up against.  We sent a note to the City Communications department asking:

Can you confirm that meetings have and are  taking place to prepare for the opening of additional locations where people can cool off during the intense heat waves.  The response we got consisted of a list of the locations people could get away from oppressive heat.

The response is set out below.  It was almost as if nothing had or was being done.

What happens when there isn’t enough room for all the parents who want to find a place for their children to cool off ?

Cooling Centre information: Where to go in Burlington

Library locations:

Aldershot Branch

550 Plains Rd. E.

Alton Branch

3040 Tim Dobbie Dr.

Brant Hills Branch

2255 Brant St.

Central Branch

2331 New St.

New Appleby Branch

676 Appleby Line

Tansley Woods Branch

1996 Itabashi Way

The Communications department added:

The adjustments that summer camps make during a heat wave include:

  • Provide staff and children opportunities for additional water breaks
  • Engage in outdoor activities in the morning hours in shaded areas
  • Encourage staff and children to stay indoors in air conditioned rooms during the height of the heat wave; simultaneously, we also incorporate a more regular break schedule and utilize air conditioned, cooler spaces at times when heat is less intense but it’s still hot outside.
  • Utilize splash pads, and some of our camps include swimming as a means to cool off
  • Play additional water games as another means to cool off
  • There are too many parts of the city where facilities like this just don’t exist.

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Summer Music at the Ireland House Oakridge Farm

By Staff

July 6th, 2023



An evening listening to local musicians on the historic grounds of Oakridge Farm at Ireland House Museum starts on the 14th and runs through to the end of August.

The outdoor stage will feature local musicians on select Friday evenings throughout July and August.

Performances are from 7:30pm – 8:30pm, gates open at 7pm. There will be lawn games to play and light refreshments available for purchase from local vendors. Bring a lawn chair or blanket and relax while listening to local talent.

Admission is “pay what you can”, the suggested donation is $5/person (cash, debit or credit accepted). Donations will be collected at the front and back gates of Ireland House Museum. Your donation provides support to the exhibitions, collections management, special events and education programs that bring our mission to life.

REVEL Realty Inc., Brokerage is sponsoring the event.

Summer Music Series Schedule:

July 14 – Hayley Verrall
July 21 – Sarah Church
July 28 – Jeremy Guther
August 11 – Warren Jones
Aug 18 – Natalie Reis
Aug 25 – Dan Taylor

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The Redesign of Civic Square - Part 3 - how did council react ?

By Pepper Parr

July 4th, 2023


Part 3 of a 3 part article on the redevelopment of Civic Square

City Hall released a plan last week to redesign Civic Square.  The three parts are:

What was done before the plans that are now before the public?
What did the Staff report have to say in their report to Council ?.
And how did council react


The outline of the redevelopment of Civic Square. How the Queen’s Head pub (the yellow box inside the project limits) is going to be handled is a question that was never asked.

Councillor Nisan was first out of the gate with two important questions.
“Overall, I’m very, very pleased to see what’s coming forward; there’s a lot of emphasis on engagement and emphasis on design excellence. The look and feel of the location is sort of underpinning everything. We ensure that we don’t sort of build like a camel versus a horse here.

Becky Lewis, Senior Landscape Planner for the City of Burlington.

Becky Ellis:,   Senior Landscape Planner for the city explained: Design excellence is built into our goal. We have a team of internal and external consultants who are professionals and design experts. We can put your worries to rest – design excellence won’t be a major consideration for this project.

Nisan: “With that in mind. I didn’t see a mention there in terms of location being in front of like at the seat of low local government. Assume that’ll be part of it as well.

“My only other real question is? I thought we were going to look at doing a design competition for this area to get as many ideas from local and abroad. Now is that still a possibility or does the hiring of this team mean that they’re the ones who are designing? It wasn’t clear to me how that would play out. Is it possible to have a few different you know, really great. companies taking a look at this area ?

Ellis: “There will be no design competition held for this. We did have an RFP process that went through our standard procurement process. And city has selected a team of professionals that we feel are a great design team.

Ellis: “ I hope that answers your question.”

Nisan: Maybe there’s one follow up. . So why didn’t we do it? And what if the design doesn’t go the way we hoped it would?

The meeting went silent and someone asked “did someone else speak up? Or am I just hearing?

Ellis: “No, sorry to go back.. I’m sorry, Your questions are?: “ Why didn’t we do that? And I’m sorry, can you repeat the second question?

Ward 3 Councillor Rory Nisan who lives in ward 2

Nisan: Why didn’t we do it? And what if the design doesn’t come out the way we hoped it will?

Ellis: “So in terms of why we didn’t do that? I’m not sure

Chair asks: I’m hoping I can look to maybe Alan or Tim, to comment on that first, and then I can I can move on to the second question.

Alan Magi: “I’m happy to weigh in on this. Is as Becky indicated, we did go through a robust process in selecting our consultants for this, as well as reporting back to council. That what we wanted – to ensure that we had early engagement with counsel as we’re doing the design, development, and to make sure we are all on the same page.

“Participating in that design work as it’s succeeding and not waiting until the final sort of completion of that; you’ll see it in the project schedule and engagement plan that we’ve built into the early part of the design development – so that there’s touchpoints, coming back to council. In addition to the broader engagement with the community, – we would do all that before we really embark on the final sort of detailed design and preparing the packages for tender.

City Manager Tim Commisso

City Manager Tim Commisso: “That is at the front end – allowing consultation with counsel at a couple of touch points – they’ll jump in. Through my many years; I have done a lot of projects and when you have a project that requires iterative design and extensive community consultation, a design competition tends not to work as well. Because you really are in a process of iteration.

“I can say that when we did the waterfront, 20 years ago, we put the new facility at Discovery Landing out for design competition. We had the land, we were looking for a design for that kind of facility and it worked well there.

“But I think that was a unique circumstance. I think in this case, it’s the evolving involvement in the design, through the entire process of engagement. That makes it a challenge to then put out to a design competition, because inherent within that process is designed and we’ve got to you know, very qualified firm firms, quite frankly, to do that. That’d be my thoughts on it.

Ward 1 Councillor Kelvin Galbraith

Question from Councillor Galbraith: “ I recall this conversation back when we had the previous design of Civic Square and I actually liked it back then. This is obviously a much bigger project now including Elgin Street and other parts of it. So it’s a much bigger project. The financial impact talks about some of the government contributions, just wondering if we have a total cost of this entire project yet ?”

Ellis:  “We do not have a cost estimate yet because of course, we haven’t started design. We do have an understanding of what our financial commitment is through the ISEP funding. And we will be budgeting additional money for that phase of work that includes the Brant Street entrance to City Hall.

“Right now, the ISIP funding sits around in the $5 million mark, and we will be adding to that capital funding to that for the architectural changes.

Clock outside City Hall – it will probably be moved but will play a significant role in the look of a redeveloped. Civic Square.

Galbraith: ‘My one other question, was reading the engagement report? I know we’ve heard, and we’ve worked with our twin cities, in our Civic Square. I think the clock was donated by one of our Twin Cities, just wondering if that will form any part of the engagement. I know I’ve heard the mayor say several times, she’s learned a lot about our city, during visits to our other twin cities and their city halls. Just wondering if that is any part of the engagement thought at all.

Ellis: “Are you talking specifically of the clock? Or are you talking about engagement with our Twin Cities?

Galbraith: “Yeah, engagement with our Twin Cities, just, you know, maybe some research on what they have of our city over there and what we could incorporate in our Civic Square here of our Twin Cities. Appledoorn and Itabashi.

Ellis: “I think we can certainly explore some engagement or some outreach to representatives of the Twin Cities. We will note that Sheila (Spruce Labs) is also here on the line. I don’t know if she had anything to add, or if that’s just something that we can note for the engagement plan.

“I was just going to say thank you for bringing that up. I think that’s an excellent idea. And that we will definitely consider how to how to work together to bring that in.

The eight points that drive the thinking going into the redevelopment of Civic Square.

Question from Councillor Sherman: “This is a very robust design process, I’m really impressed with the degree of engagement to make this a place for gathering of human beings. That leads me to the question: to what degree have we addressed the question of place making? Are we satisfied that we’ve covered all the angles for this particular location? Would it be useful for other locations as we evolve the city, the community with different places such as this that we’d like to, to design in a similar fashion? How comprehensive of this I guess this question for Sheila?

Suggestion that the question be deferred because it goes beyond this scale of this project?

Ellis:  “Yeah, I think that’s fine. I guess I’m just looking for some clarity on your question. Are you asking if we believe we will be including other sites start? Can you clarify your question for me?

City Manager: “If I can interpret the question. I think the question is clear that this is a special place, right? This is, an investment where, you know, I think when I hear the budget, we can do and it already is a special place. The question is, is how do we ensure that place making design you know, that this becomes even more special is inherent within the design? And, you know, whether it’s principles of place making I know in the past, we have touched reached out, you know, project for public spaces, places, you know, organizations like that.

This is what makes the design approach an iterative one; every step taken is expected to inform the steps that follow.

“So, I’m just going to interpret Councillor Sherman’s comments as making sure that that inherent with that is really a strong foundation of place making. The only thing I was going to mention too, and it was just last month that we dealt with another special place. And that is the water feature. And also, you know, Discovery landing, which is also concurrently going to be renewed. And I think, you know, in the context of both of these going forward at the same time, and I’m not suggesting that, you know, that the sign will inform, but I do think that they have a similar element to people places, and really, you know, nailing down I think the next 20 to 30 years of having them become where the community just celebrates, and everybody is welcome. And so, I think, you know, I’m not the designer, I wish I was, but that’s not my, that’s not my background, but I love I love these kinds of projects. So I’m hoping I’m characterizing Councillor Sherman your views properly.

Alan Magi: “If I could add maybe just to that, I think in terms of the comments about seed government and remembering to and not that there’s an integration with the renovations that we’re doing to city hall right now, so that this will all tie together both for the streetscape from the end of the Elgin promenade that we have right now. And tying this all together, I think that this is all inherent as part of this project, making that sort of special place, recognizing that this is the focal point of government of the city as well as a public space for the citizens.

Ward 5 Councillor Paul Sharman: Looking for public art to be part of the redevelopment and wants to see the approach being taken with Civic Square as a template for other places in the city.

Sharman: “Thank you very much. I got the answer to my question. But it raises another question, which is whether or not we’ve involved the manager of arts and culture. In this particular design, we give we provide a $50,000 a year for arts and I think it could be triple that. And I think that I know that our manager of arts and culture has phenomenal training and experience in cultural training and cultural development. I’m just wondering if he has been involved in this discussion? And should be or not?

Ellis: “Yeah, oh, yeah. Through you chair. The project team and Angela have already had several meetings. And they are fully integrated into this process, there will be a public art component to this there is there is funding for public art. So beginning next year, there will be a solicitation for a public artist to integrate something really special into the design.

Question from Mayor Meed Ward. “Great suggestions and questions. Just wanting to ensure that we have the broadest possible scope for input and consideration of this project. “We’ve heard about features that would echo our Twin Cities, perhaps there’s community amenities. Indigenous consultation will be a part of that, maybe a fire pit. Making sure that there’s water sound, proper wiring for it to be an event space, flex streets for example. So those are just some of my ideas. And my question is, is all of that in scope? If we hear it from the community? If, if it seems like a good idea with our consultant that that could come back as part of this design?

A long pause.

Ellis: “Yes. So we have is as part of the process of obtaining the consultants there would be professionals on our team that could help us with all of those things that you mentioned. Those are all on the table and part of the scope of work for the project.

Mayor Meed Ward outside City Hall. The redevelopment of Civic Square – She loves it. It’s awesome.

Meed Ward: “I’m okay to move it and make some comments. I was hoping that would be the answer. And I will say that I agree that this is a robust process. I want to make sure that we have the broadest funnel to receive input from the community. Because this is a once in a generation, maybe once in a few generations opportunity.

“When Civic Square was last before Council, we paused it in part, because of our anxiety over were we thinking big enough and broad enough in scope. And we want it to be more than we’re gonna, you know, we might move a few flagpoles and fix the bricks, so it’s accessible and maybe plant a tree or two. I think we have a real opportunity to make this a destination community gathering space, and to Councillor Sherman’s point earlier, a new template for how we’re going to design our civic buildings.

“I’m very glad to see the roads in and around it as part of this, and the Elgin promenade piece, because that is an awkward section of Brant Street. This is a real opportunity to have a holistic design. And I think I think all of the things that we’ve talked about and that have been raised by my colleagues are really important considerations.

“I love the idea of consulting with our Twin Cities. This is just an incredible opportunity to land a magnificent design. So I look forward to the consultation.

Councillor Stolte: “My question is about flex streets. I know that we have been talking we’ve had significant conversation over the last few years in regards to that section of Brant Street and Elgin, particularly Brant Street from James south. I know that a big piece of it could extend so for the scope of this design, but just in keeping with this whole place making and tying it together and having a broad enough scope, is it possible to consider phasing this project, particularly the design part?

“I understand, Becky, that you mentioned right at the beginning of your presentation that the roadwork in front of Brant Street at the corner of James is going to be on hold due to the construction at the southeast corner of James and Brant; if that’s what I’m understanding correctly, that we’re not going to be going into construction on Brant street.

“I’m wondering if the design can possibly encompass that concept of potential pedestrian friendly open streets, shared streets, flex streets, even if it’s a phase two that doesn’t happen for a couple of years. I think the design needs to be considered broad enough that in the end, it’s all cohesive, and that we don’t do Civic Square, and then look at potential shared or flex streets on Brant Street, and but the design of Civic Square wasn’t necessarily built into that. So does that question make sense as far as understanding that the construction for Brant Street is not in the scope, but considering some high level design phase two, in case the community does go forward with wanting some sort of pedestrian shared fleck street on Brant and Elgin?

Commisso: “Your question is very pertinent. Scott Hamilton, Director of Engineering and Alan Magi have had that discussion about how this design informs the broader reconstruction of Brant Street. There is a lower and an upper Brant; we have our eye on the whole street.

Scott Hamilton: Director of Engineering

“ Scott should comment because I know he is very informed as to sort of our plans for reconstruction, going forward but the idea of how this design informs that particularly on lower brand street, I think is very appropriate question.

Scott Hamilton: “The intent is that we tie this all together. We’ve got a lot of development happening. As you mentioned, there’s the different parts of Brant and James where development is pending and then our streetscape guidelines would come into play. At complete streets and what have you in the area, the intent is that we can kind of pull it all together..

Councillor Sharman: “I didn’t really understand the conversations we were having a few years ago about what we were going to do to Civic Square – it was very confused. What you’re proposing now is not confusing. I support it completely. I think this is a wonderful opportunity in the context of the future of buildings and changing so dramatically, that we get to make the statement now.

“But that statement should represent what we want for the future of Burlington. And therefore, you know, I go back to my comments about culture, that we actually have to begin thinking about the culture we want for the community going forward. And that needs to be reflected in staff. But that’s a different conversation. Right now, we need to be talking about where we want our community to go.

Commisso: “When we had that discussion, four years ago, it was a constrained budget discussion. We were asking committee for more money ($1.1 million) to do a few more things.

“We’re talking a whole different discussion here. We move forward; this is really an opportunity to do something special.

The Mayor moves the motion:
Okay, but a great conversation. So before calling the vote anyone else like to comment? Note, we’ve exhausted the conversation. Thank you very much. So seeing no further comments, I’ll call the vote on item 4.1. Please raise your hand. All those in favour? Any opposed? And that carries?

The Motion was to Receive and file engineering services department report providing an update to the Civic Square and Brant Street renewal project.

Redesign of Civic Square – Part 1

Redesign of Civic Square Part 2

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Heat Warning issued for Halton Region

By Staff

July 4th. 2023


As a result of extreme heat and humidity, Environment Canada has issued a Heat Warning for Halton Region starting July 4, 2023. This warning is issued when forecast temperatures are expected to reach 31 degrees Celsius or more with overnight temperatures above 20 degrees Celsius for two days, or when a humidex of 40 or higher is expected for two days.

Especially at risk

Seek shade from the sun.

• older adults (over the age of 65), infants and young children, people who work and exercise in the heat, people without adequate housing and those without air conditioning; and

• people who have breathing difficulties, heart problems, kidney problems or are taking medication that increase their heat-health risk.
Prevention tips

• drink plenty of cool liquids, especially water;

• avoid strenuous outdoor activities;

• seek shade from the sun;

• spend time in air-conditioned places, such as shopping malls and community centres; and

Some choose to sit in the shade listen to the music and enjoy time with their neighbours – summer in the city

• visit friends and neighbours who may be at risk and never leave people or pets in your care unattended in a car.

If you or someone in your care experiences rapid breathing, headache, confusion, weakness or fainting, please seek medical attention right away.

Weather and heat information are available on local radio and television stations and the Environment Canada Weather Conditions and Forecast webpage. For information and tips on how to protect your health during heat warnings, including a listing of air conditioned locations in Halton, please visit our Heat Warning webpage at halton.ca or call 311.



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