The Holiday Market planned for December of this year appears to be relying on sponsorships: Is there that much loose cash in the city?

By Pepper Parr

October 22nd, 2021



This is about an event proposal that literally slipped through council with very little public input.

At the time the organizers of the event were looking for a five year permit – Ward Councillor Lisa Kearns whittled that down to two years.

The urgency on the part of the organizers was to give sponsors the assurance that they were putting their money into something that was going to be around for awhile.

TD bank was mentioned as people ready to sign the cheque.

The organizers explained that The Burlington Holiday Market was established to celebrate the holiday spirit in the heart of the city, downtown Burlington. 2021 will mark the first year of this annual event. Building on a tradition of bringing the community together, the Market welcomes residents, families and visitors from around the Halton and Hamilton region to come and experience a celebration of the season.

In partnership with the Sound of Music, the Burlington Holiday Market took inspiration from European Christmas markets and infused a flair of Canadiana to deliver a unique and imaginative immersive experience. The Burlington Holiday Market will offer several features including concerts and choirs, a HERO’s lounge, interactive community art features and advent-style community displays.*

After a tumultuous 18-months, the Burlington Holiday Market is ready to bring everyone back together and revitalize the downtown just in time for the holiday season. From December 9th to 12th we will transform downtown Burlington into a holiday wonderland with something to excite all the senses and fun for all ages.

They pointed to the history of large events in Burlington with Sound of Music festival brings 200,000 people into the downtown and RibFest, which has been around since 1996 attracting approximately 175,000 people.

Sponsorships were clearly a big part of the revenue side.

Available for your consideration we are offering limited sponsorship at the following levels:


PRESENTing Sponsorships

1 Available


Gold Sponsorships

4 Available


Silver Sponsorships

7 Available


Bronze Sponsorships

10 Available

And the following unlimited sponsorships:

$3,000 Cheer Sponsorships

$1,000 Snowflake Sponsorships

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market

The PRESENTing Sponsor ($40,000) will enjoy the ultimate in visibility around the region, in the media and during the market. This is an opportunity to leverage an active and engaged audience and offer a high-profile display in the largest activation space available within the Market.

● Market Naming
● Lounge Naming

● 20’x20′ Activation space for the duration of the show for four days – Dec 9, 10, 11, 12

● Verbal recognition from stage hosts
● Prize draw participation

Social Media
● 10 x Mentions and/or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 10 x Shares and/or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

● Logo included on postcard inside delivered parcel
● Opportunity for product inclusion

Thank you
● Inclusion in post-event Thank You video that will be

● Naming recognition on all advertising (website, print

● Logo on print advertising
● Logo on outdoor advertising


distributed on social

and digital)
● Named in all press releases
● Logo on website (linkable)
● Logo on general signage

● Logo on digital advertising
● Logo on printed poster
● Logo on print banner
● Radio advertising mention

● First right of refusal for 2022

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market

Gold Sponsors will benefit from high visibility and numerous touch points throughout the Market, mentions in the media and a presence on all marketing materials leading up to and after the event. Gold sponsorship activation spaces will be centrally located to maximize traffic and audience opportunity

● 10′ x l0′ Activation space for the duration of the show for four days – Dec 9, 10, 11, 12

● Verbal recognition from stage hosts
● Prize draw participation

● Named in all press releases
● Logo on website (linkable)
● Logo on general signage
● Logo on print advertising
● Logo on outdoor advertising
● Logo on digital advertising
● Logo on printed poster

Social Media
● 6 x Mentions and/or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 6 x Shares and/or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

Thank you
● Inclusion in post-event Thank You video that will be distributed on social

● Logo included on postcard inside delivered parcel
● Opportunity for product inclusion

● First right of refusal for 2022

● Logo on print banner
● Radio advertising mention

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market

Silver Sponsors will gain access to high traffic activation sites and logo inclusion on a wide range of promotional materials. This is an excellent opportunity to re-engage with the community and drive brand recognition, leads, sales or showcase products and services just in time for the gift giving season.

● 6’x6′ Activation space for the duration of the show for four days – Dec 9, 10, 11, 12

● Verbal recognition from stage hosts
● Prize draw participation

● Named in all press releases
● Logo on website (linkable)
● Logo on general signage
● Logo on print advertising
● Logo on outdoor advertising
● Logo on digital advertising
● Logo on printed poster
● Logo on printed banner

Social Media
● 3 x Mentions and/or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 3 x Shares and/or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

● Logo included on postcard inside delivered parcel

Thank you
● Inclusion in post-event Thank You video that will be distributed on social

● First right of refusal for 2022

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market

Bronze Sponsors will have the opportunity to present their brand, product and services to a large, engaged audience. Branding will be included on a wide range of promotional materials distributed throughout Halton region and online leading up to and during the Burlington Holiday Market. Reach a large, concentrated audience from sunrise to sunset!

● 6’x6′ Activation space for the duration of the show for one day – Dec 9 or 10 or 11 or 12

● Prize draw participation

● Logo on website (linkable)
● Logo on general signage
● Logo on print advertising
● Logo on outdoor advertising
● Logo on digital advertising
● Logo on printed poster

Social Media
● 2 x Mentions and/or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 2 x Shares and/or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

● Logo included on postcard inside delivered parcel

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market

Cheer Sponsors are big supporters of the community and will be able to take advantage of the opportunity to drive traffic to their website and social media platforms, promote their participation in the Burlington Holiday Market and their support for the artists, vendors, performers and food and beverage providers of Burlington and Halton.

● Logo on website (linkable)

Social Media
● 1 x Mentions and / or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 1 x Shares and/or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

Building a snow sculpture isn’t possible without many snowflakes. Each contributing to building something bigger to be enjoyed by everyone, much like the Burlington Holiday Market. Make your contribution to supporting the community and the downtown core with a Snowflake sponsorship and share your contribution with your friends and followers – we will do the same!

Social Media
● 1 x Mentions and / or tags* on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels
● 1 x Shares and / or reposts* of approved sponsor content on Burlington Holiday Market social media channels

*All sponsorships may be subject to change at the discretion of the Burlington Holiday Market.

The person you want to meet with is:

Meagan Madill
T: 905.995.4343

Bring your cheque book.

There is a lot more behind this situation – Stay Tuned and Stand By!

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Spooktacular event runs between 10 am and 5 pm Saturday at Burlington Central

By Ryan O’Dowd: Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

October 21st, 2021



Burlington Centre transforms this Saturday for their Spooktacular Finds and Drive-In Movie events.

The Mom’s Market Collective hosts the Spooktacular Finds that will be set up throughout the Centre with over 25 vendors selling unique merchandise and products.

Customers are encouraged to bring their kids along for trick or treating.

What do you think he is looking at? Sounds like a great event – the movie tickets were gone in a flash.

After the market shuts down the Drive-In Movie Spooktacular kicks off at 6:30 pm. The sold-out film event has seen 100 available parking spaces fill up for both Saturday and Sunday. Tickets were free and guests are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item that will go to the Gift of Giving Back.

The Mom Market Collective is a Canada wide Collective that believes in supporting local and giving a platform for the small shops in the community. On Saturday October 23rd The Mom Market Halton is hosting their Spooktacular Finds Market at Burlington Centre from 10-5.

The small businesses you can shop from are: 30 Something Co, Li Creations, Simple Bath, Lucy Nixon Norwex, SweetLegs Hamilton With Heather, Honey Harbour Designs, Lottastic, Sweet Peas Baby Company, Ella rose little bows, Barely There Skincare, The Maison Noor, Atelieh, Jai & Miah Boutique, Heather’s Essentials, Wicker Blues, rresintable, Chakra Jewels Accessories, Chewie & Co., Reiki and Rock Craft Wellness and A Plus Teacher

For those who secured tickets for the drive-in portion, restaurants will be open for takeout and snacks are available.

Blaze Pizza is providing a special menu for the event. Spots are first come, first served. Full details can be found on the Burlington Centre website.

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Public School Board hosting Mental Health & Well-Being Information Sessions for Parents/Guardians this Fall

By Staff

October 20th, 2021



The Halton District School Board is hosting Mental Health & Well-Being Information Sessions for parents/guardians this Fall.
Covering specific topics based on feedback from parents/guardians, each session will be led by a mental health expert in that area who will share their knowledge and provide helpful information and resources.

Sessions include:
• Building Executive Function Skills in Teenagers: How Can Parents Help? – Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021 from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.
• Diving Deeper into Anxiety – Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2021 from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.
• Stress, Coping and Resilience – Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021 from 6:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Registration is required for these sessions as limited spots are available. Parents/guardians can register by completing the Mental Health & Well-Being Information Sessions Registration Form. Sessions will be held on Google Meet and registrants will be emailed a link to access the session. Sessions will not be recorded.

Register HERE

Parents/guardians will have the opportunity to submit questions when completing the registration form or during the session.

The Board’s Mental Health & Well-Being webpage has information for parents/guardians and students on mental health, ways to support positive mental health and well-being, and how to get additional support at school and in the broader community.


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City of Burlington recreational facilities and vaccine status

By Staff

October 20th, 2021



The City of Burlington will continue to follow the Provincial mandate and require proof of vaccination in City recreational facilities for all who are eligible for the vaccines.

City-operated services and facilities not impacted include:

  • City Hall at 426 Brant St.
  • Outdoor sports fields
  • Diamonds, parks and playgrounds
  • Burlington Transit
  • Halton Court Services

Parents can watch – but they must show their proof of vaccination papers.

To enter a City facility, visitors will need to show a piece of identification with their name and date of birth and either:

• Show their vaccine certificate with QR code (paper or electronic), or
• Show their vaccination receipt (paper or electronic)

Parents and/or guardians may enter a facility for a maximum of 15 minutes to drop off and pick-up a participant for a program, without showing proof of vaccination. Parents who are required to stay in the facility for the duration of the program must be fully vaccinated.

All current regulations around screening, masking and physical distancing will not change based vaccine status.
To download your vaccine certificate, go to

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Burlington Residents Can Now Enjoy an Interactive Exhibition on Artwork at the Royal Botanical Gardens

By Mark Maycock

October 19th, 2021



If you weren’t yet aware, many things are going on in the area these days, and many residents are enjoying the autumn season.

Those who have been raring to go out can do so with more enjoyment if they visit the Royal Botanical Gardens – where there is an ongoing interactive exhibition on artwork.

Seeing the Invisible at Royal Botanical Gardens

The exhibition, entitled ‘Seeing the Invisible,’ is arguably the most expansive and ambitious exhibition the Gardens has to date. It features a range of contemporary and modern artwork complemented by AR or augmented reality technology.

What it is

We can’t deny the significance of this exhibition, especially since it uses AR technology, which is astounding in many ways. But what exactly is AR? AR or augmented reality is a technology that can add or augment any viewer’s perception of their environment. In most cases, the digital info is superimposed on a real-life setting, but this is fixed in a specific place. At the same time, the user or viewer moves around the environment or moves their gadget around the environment.

The exhibit itself was developed in partnership with other botanical gardens worldwide, and Seeing the Invisible was first launched on September 23 as a participating botanical garden among a total of 12 in various countries. It’s worth noting, however, that it’s the only participating botanical garden in Canada.

What you can expect

The exhibition features work from over a dozen global artists. Its theme expounds on the wonders of nature, sustainability, and the environment, delivering an exploration of connections and boundaries between nature, technology, and art.

Hendrie Gardens at the Royal Botanical Gardens – a world class location

You can engage with the exhibition once you download an app, and it fosters brilliant collaboration between audiences, institutions, and artists. It’s a great way to emphasize and showcase how art can bring people together. Once you’re in the app, you will come across 13 interactive and unique artworks, and these are all spread around the landscape of Hendrie Gardens.   You can even take photos with the larger-than-life artwork, and you can essentially walk around the exhibit and listen to an audio plugin that makes your experience even more artistic and memorable.

The exhibit is now at Hendrie Gardens, and anyone can visit it from Thursday to Sunday. Seeing the Invisible runs until the 6th of November, and it operates between the hours of 10 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon.

The details

To attend, you can pre-register and buy a ticket, and when you purchase your ticket, you will have to choose your preferred time and date. There are six slots; namely, 10 am, 11 am, 12 noon, 1 pm, 2 pm, and 3 in the afternoon.

Tickets cost $24.50 for general admission and only $21.50 for senior citizens and students/youth, with ticket prices at $16.50 for kids aged 4 to 12 and only $2 for members of the Royal Botanical Gardens.

It’s good news for those who are still spending a lot of time at home during the pandemic. But if you want to make more of your time at home, you can also play in an online casino in Canada – who knows, luck may be on your side after you’ve been inspired by the gorgeous interactive technology and the artwork you’ve just experienced.


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Covid19 rules for sports situations are tightened up by Medical Officer of Health

By Staff

October 19th, 2021



Halton Region’s Medical Officer of Health (MOH), Dr. Hamidah Meghani, has issued a letter of instructions to indoor sports and recreational fitness facilities to implement vaccination policies that require all eligible individuals to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to participate in organized sports and recreational fitness activities in these settings.

For businesses and organizations, this means establishing, implementing and ensuring compliance with a COVID-19 vaccination policy by no later than November 26, 2021 for all persons 12 years and older who attend an indoor area of the indoor sport or recreational facility for the purpose of actively participating, coaching, training, instructing, officiating or having similar involvement in organized sports and recreational fitness activities.

These instructions are being introduced to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and outbreaks, further protecting the health of all participants, coaches, officials, volunteers, spectators and others including those with weaker immune systems or who cannot be vaccinated because of their age or for medical reasons.

Robust compliance with masking, physical distancing and other public health measures in all facilities used for sports and recreational fitness activities in Halton Region also remains essential to protect our community.

To read Dr. Meghani’s instructions for indoor sports and recreational fitness activities or for additional public health information and guidance, please visit


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Art Gallery Soup Bowl fund raiser underway.

By Staff

October 14th, 2021



They have been doing it for years and weren’t about to let a pandemic get in the way.

The Annual Soup Bowl event is now underway.

Participation is easy: 1. Chose a Bowl, 2. Plan Your Pick-up, 3. Enjoy your soup! Bowl sales have BEGUN and the event runs from November 8th-30th.

The event is a favourite fundraiser – social distance style! One-of-a-kind bowls are fresh out of the kiln waiting to be filled with locally produced soups.

Five of the restaurants taking part are located in the Downtown Core.


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Mayor will be showing off one of the smartest locations in town.

By Pepper Parr

October 14th, 2021



She is back – we missed those regular updates.

The Mayor does her version of a tell all – see it for yourself right here:

Later today she will be holding a media event at one of the smartest locations in the city -The Pearle Hotel and Spa on Elizabeth street.

The sweeping staircase is spectacular.  And the outdoor space is something you have to experience.


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What happened to civility? - When did words start losing their unifying potency and meaning?

By Staff

October 7th, 2021



Margaret Lindsay Holton, rely on her to do something different.

She has put together WHAT and calls it GROUP THINK; it has been in the works since the release of her second album, CANADADA: TAKE TWO, in 2017.

MLH explains:  GROUP THINK explores several issues that have been brewing since we’ve settled into this ‘new normal’. – How are we really doing?

And, are we really ready for time travel? Will we leave Nature behind, again? The primary focus though is on language. Across the media spectrum, our words have become increasingly volatile, vulgar, and violent. – Why? What happened to civility? – When did words start losing their unifying potency and meaning?

Have a listen to these musical ‘sound thoughts’ and read my notes on the album.

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Operation Impact 2021: Be a Hero. Aim for Zero.

By Staff

October 7th, 2021



Tomorrow marks the beginning of Operation Impact 2021, a national public awareness campaign aimed at making Canada’s roads the safest in the world. By promoting safe driving behaviours, we hope to help prevent collisions, save lives, and reduce injuries on our roads.

From Friday, October 8th to Monday, October 11th, 2021, police across the country will be focused on behaviours that put drivers, passengers and other road users at risk:

  • impaired driving due to alcohol, drugs or fatigue;
  • aggressive driving;
  • distracted driving; and
  • driving without a seat belt.

Most collisions are not ‘accidents’, they are generally the direct result of a conscious decision an individual driver has made. If there were zero problematic driving behaviours at the wheel, we could expect zero collisions, zero injuries and zero deaths on our roads. So this year, we are inviting residents in our community to Be a hero. Aim for zero.

Motor vehicle collisions kill about 2,000 Canadians, seriously injure another 10,000 people and injure about 165,000 citizens in this country each year.

It is not a coincidence that the timing of this campaign to achieve safer streets and highways takes place during this long weekend. More people are travelling, and collisions are therefore more frequent.

If you see driving behavior that puts others at risk, please call 911 at the earliest and safest opportunity.

Operation Impact is organized by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, under the leadership of the CACP Traffic Safety Committee, in support of Canada’s Road Safety Strategy 2025.

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What does cipher and encryption mean? A fascinating exhibit that will appeal to students with a bit of a science bent

By Staff

October 7th, 2021



There is a fascinating exhibit coming to the Joseph Brant Museum – this is one for both parents and the older children.

What ciphers are and the role they play in encryption is explained very well.

Cipher | Decipher, a new exhibition developed by Ingenium – Canada’s Museums of Science and Innovation, in partnership with the Communications Security Establishment (CSE) will open on October 15th providing visitors with a rare and exciting opportunity to view an authentic Second World War Enigma cipher machine.

Cipher | Decipher breaks down communications encryption: what it is, how it works, and how it affects our lives. The 500-square-foot exhibition showcases a wide range of historic communications encryption artifacts on loan from the CSE, and contains both hands-on and digital experiences, as well as custom illustrations that visually demonstrate key processes in cybersecurity, and making and breaking ciphers.

You will be able to encrypt a message with the wheel.

Visitors will be able to scramble their own messages using a cipher wheel, see how an Enigma cipher machine works, and tackle puzzles to learn if they have what it takes to work in the field of cryptology.

The exhibition runs from October 15, 2021 to January 8, 2022. Museum hours of operation are Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 3:30pm. In accordance with COVID-19 protocols, the Museums of Burlington has procedures in place to allow the public to safely enjoy the galleries and exhibitions currently on view.

Visitors to the Museum are asked to pre-pay admission online for a designated entry time. Entry times are available on the 1/2 hour.

Walk-in visitors will be accommodated space permitting.

This is the kind of exhibit that will fascinate – especially those students who are taking the iStem program at the Aldershot High school.


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They don't know who built it or when?

By Staff

October 5th, 2021



The Recommendation was to Authorize the Director of Engineering Services to negotiate and execute a cost sharing
agreement with the owners of property municipally known as 431 Martha Street, City of Burlington, for the design and replacement of a jointly owned retaining wall that is in need of replacement.

“Approve the project geotechnical investigation and detail design costs funding” as noted in engineering services department report.

A retaining wall exists, along the bank of Rambo Creek, at 431 Martha Street, City of Burlington. The lower portion of the retaining wall and foundation is reinforced concrete, and the upper portion of the wall is masonry block. The construction year is unknown, and no information exists respecting who constructed the wall.

That is troubling – city administrations keep everything but for some reason the information doesn’t exist.

How this level of damage to a retaining wall was missed is disturbing.

In early 2021, the City conducted its legislated biennial detailed visual inspections in accordance with the requirements of the Ontario Structure Inspection Manual. During the inspection on April 9, 2021, the City’s consultant assessed this retaining wall as being in poor condition, recommending immediate replacement. The consultant also recommended fencing off the area behind the retaining wall, within a 4m radius of the wall to prevent pedestrian and vehicular access to the area for safety reasons until the retaining wall is replaced. The City proceeded to fence off this area and closed the affected sidewalk and driveway at 431 Martha Street. The City obtained a legal survey and confirmed the majority of the retaining wall (approximately 80%) is located within 431 Martha Street private property limits.

The bit of grate seen at the left is where the creek runs beneath Martha Street. The level of damage is severe.

The remaining 20% of the wall is within the City’s Martha Street right-of-way. Failure of the retaining wall could cause significant damage to private property and Rambo Creek, potentially causing debris to block or disrupt the flow of the creek. If the retaining wall collapses there is also a risk of damaging the surrounding sidewalk as well as compromising the adjacent culvert structure and the Martha Street roadway. The City is working with the property owners to secure a cost sharing agreement which would result in a 50/50 cost split for the geotechnical investigation work and a cost split of 80% ownership of 431 Martha Street and 20% City of Burlington for the design and construction. The City is currently negotiating the terms of a cost sharing agreement relating to the geotechnical investigation as well as the design and construction of the retaining wall. At this time, the property owners agreed to the City managing the retaining wall replacement project, pursuant to the terms of the City’s Procurement Bylaw.

Given the experience the city had during the 2014 flood replacing that retaining wall is critical.

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Thanksgiving - have you thought about how you want to share?

By Staff

October 4th, 2021



It just takes your breath away.

The colours of the leaves on the trees are changing.

The mornings are just a little on the crisp side.

The season is changing on us.

And now we head for Thanksgiving – a time when we will have to decide just how we are going to celebrate and with whom we will celebrate.

If you have a relative who has chosen not to vaccinate – what do you do? Let us know when you figure that one out.

For some a fulsome Thanksgiving celebration may not be in the cards – there is an opportunity to help out if you are so inclined.

St. Matthews Church on Plains Road has been collecting foods and school supplies for those whose budgets aren’t what they used to be.

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The city was listening. Ottawa was listening. Will they act?

By Ryan O’Dowd

October 1st, 2021



Hundreds attended an Every Child Matters Truth and Reconciliation Day ceremony yesterday afternoon in downtown Burlington.

People parading along the Beachway Trail towards Spencer Smith Park

The event, hosted at Spencer Smith Park, was by turns celebratory and somber. Music, dancing, education, and prayer made for a lively afternoon; the speakers reminded everyone why they had gathered.

Residential schools and other systemic injustices were at the forefront of the discussion.

Ward 2 Councillor Lisa Kearns with an Indigenous dancer

The event was punctuated by a resounding plea that events like these aren’t enough, real action must follow. Some speakers issued pointed warnings to the politicians in attendance, recently re-elected Minister Karina Gould and Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.

Speaking to the Gazette event organizer, Amber Ruthart, reiterated the need for reconciliation to be a constant consideration and not a trend.

“Today has been a very beautiful outpouring of support from the City of Burlington, and the community. A lot of people are here and they’re asking the right questions. It’s unfortunate how mass graves had to be discovered for this to happen but in a way, it’s bringing our community together, awareness of it.

“I hope that education continues and is not just a trend. Also, we hope to be doing more indigenous awareness social events in the future here in Burlington,” said Ruthart.

Family members with Residential School survivor

In the afternoon’s most emotional moment, a speaker, White Eagle, brought her mother, a residential school survivor, to the stage. Overcome by the moment White Eagle paused a long while to collect herself before introducing her mother, fighting back tears.

The politicians in attendance were called out by some speakers, demanding they turn their words into actionable change. Minister Gould, who’s Liberal party has been the target of scorn for shortcomings on Indigenous matters, watched stoically.

Dancers preparing to perform at the foot of the Pier

“We all live together. This is what reconciliation is about and I challenge the government to honor her word with the Indigenous peoples in this land,” said a speaker.

MP Karina Gould talking with one of the hundreds of people who took part in the event.

Gould would not say if her presence at the event indicated she would be working in a hands-on capacity with Indigenous issues. Clarifying that Indigenous issues are considerations in every portfolio.

“Today was important and inspiring. It grounded people in why we’re here,” said Gould.

Social distancing and politely listening on a wonderful autumn afternoon

Audio was played of Orange Shirt Day (the basis for Truth and Reconciliation Day) founder, Phyllis Webstad, sharing her story.

The day takes place in September because that is the month during which Indigenous children were taken to residential schools.

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward spoke during the day.

Mayor Meed Ward delivered a speech, and land acknowledgment, discussing residential schools, systemic injustices, and praising the courage of the Indigenous women who organized the event.

“Today is meant to be about listening and learning and working towards healing, to understand what happens in our country, the truth of what really happened. There are issues that still face indigenous people, coast to coast, and right here in the city of Burlington, the discoveries of the mass and unmarked graves at residential school sites, shocked many Canadians and for many, It was the first time that they have learned this evil history,” said Meed Ward.

Drummers with an attentive audience

Education of Canadians on the truth of Indigenous relations was a recurring topic. This came a day after the province announced Indigenous curriculum will be expanded to cover grades one through three.

The ceremony began in song and ended in traditional dance. A song was proceeded with a call and response exercise where the performer taught the audience how to say “I love you” in several native tongues.

Before the ceremony, a memorial walk took place along the promenade. Young people led the way carrying signs reading “every child matters.” They smiled and celebrated along the way, sun danced through foliage and warmed the crisp autumn afternoon. It was a hopeful image on a day about hope. The orange-clad parade passed a surprised wedding party in Spencer Smith Park and shouted well wishes to them. They walked past Joseph Brant Hospital, a hospital with an Indigenous namesake serving the community as the backdrop to Indigenous peoples feeling undeserved by the community.

Several speakers called the ceremony the first Indigenous event in Burlington.

Pop-up storefronts sold “Every Child Matters” T-shirts worn by almost everyone at the event. Orange shirts could be spotted all around the downtown core.

Event organizer, Ruthart, said her native name translates into “loud voice,” her message was loud and clear today. The city was listening. Ottawa was listening. Will they act?


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Did we see a lot of Truth yesterday?

By Pepper Parr

October 1st, 2021



With the first Truth and Reconciliation Day celebrated I find myself asking – just how much truth do I have today that I didn’t have yesterday?

Dancing that reflect centuries of a culture we are now learning much more about.

As I listened to people who know far more about this than I do I heard one woman say: Truth and Reconciliation – yes. But let us make sure, she said, that Truth comes before Reconciliation because without Truth there can be no Reconciliation.

I didn’t hear yesterday anything I didn’t already know.

We know information exists that will shed much light on what really happened, and we know there are people who hold that information very close to their chests for to let it out into the public domain will severely damage their interests.

The churches, the Catholic churches for the most part, have the names and numbers but they aren’t releasing that information.

They should be able to tell us how many cemeteries there were, where they are precisely, and the names of the children they laid to rest.

Why we are making the various tribal bands spend thousands of dollars with specialized radar scanning equipment that can see below the surface is beyond me.

I did hear some statements made by students at schools that were impressive and inspiring. One school wrote a Call to Action asking the province to make the day a paid holiday for every Aboriginal person who is a teacher whose parents were sent to Residential schools.

Another young man wrote a poem that took the breath away from the broadcaster who was doing the interview.

There were a lot of tribal dances, colourful headgear and much singing and drumming which are nice to see and hear. But surely there is more to Truth and Reconciliation than this?

It was a start – we owe those people much more than we are ever going to be able to give them. What we can give them, something we can individually demand, is that it be given and that it is the cold hard truth.

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The gavel is passed at Community Development Halton

By Staff

September 30th, 2021



Another virtual Annual General Meeting.

The type of thing you attend because you have to – the Community Development Halton AGM was a little more relevant because it brought to a close the term of office for President and Chair Jan Mowbray who served for more than ten years starting out as Secretary and serving as President for the past four years.

It was a bumpy ride that included the retirement of an Executive Director after more than 20 years of service; dealing with a couple of rogue board members who didn’t understand what it was to be a Director of a not for profit organization.

And like everyone else – adapting to Covid19 and the restrictions it brought to everyone.

Community Development Halton President presiding over her last meeting as Chair – working from her kitchen counter – just like everyone else weathering our way through the pandemic.  It was one of the few occasions when the pearls came out of the jewelry box.

Community Development Halton (CDH) has served the community for a long time.  It was an incubator for agencies that now provide needed service to the Region.

The three pillars of CDH are:

  • Volunteerism – a hub for those wanting volunteer opportunities or needing volunteers.
  • Age-Friendly initiatives that encourage and promote active aging by optimizing opportunities for health, participation, and security in order to enhance quality of life as people age.
  • Social Planning – data driven using many different resources to focus on economic and social conditions that influence individual and group differences in health status.

CDH is a source of useful data on changes that are taking place in how the wider community works.  They publish Dispatches on a regular basis as well as Community Lens, a publication that digs down deep and takes a tighter look at what the data tells us.

In her last set of comments to her Board, President Mowbray said that ” If you can’t let go of certain particulars, you can’t divine larger patterns.  If you can’t shake off the pains of yesterday, you can’t be open to the possible joys of tomorrow.”

Adding that “This has been a tumultuous year – actually, it’s been a difficult three years with the pandemic taking its toll through the last 18 months. However, my comments today reflect on the past year not the least of which is the pandemic effect.

” That physical hug, the act of holding someone as hard as you can and being held onto in return is the physical reminder that we are together in whatever life threw at us.’

” ‘But it’s not just for the hard times. Most days, it’s a simple, physical reminder that we’ve still got each other, and we’re grateful.’

“I’m not saying staff and board members should all break into hugs – although I would willingly give everyone a hug if I could.

“As a society, we must find some way to safely return to physical, face-to-face meetings. Board and staff need it, we all need it.

“Interaction and discussion is far better, more meaningful, in person than on Zoom. Being in person provides a more supportive, more instinctive, more spontaneous interaction. It energizes and refreshes each of us – we play off each other in a way that doesn’t work on Zoom.

“Zoom is a stop gap meeting space at best –those radio lags really don’t contribute to good discourse.

“American Sign Language is dependent on facial expressions, so you can imagine the deaf community is impacted by the wearing of masks. However, let’s go farther – body language also speaks volumes – and you don’t get that on Zoom. (That we can’t see below the shoulders may well be a good thing from what I’ve heard about the way some people have been dressing at home during this pandemic.)

“Bottom line is we need to find a way to meet in person. Safely. Emotionally, mentally, and intellectually – we all need it.  My one vote of thanks for zoom is that every meeting eliminated a two-hour drive.

“About the CDH board?  I am proud to say that CDH has the best board ever. It has grown, matured and diversified.

Consultations with the overall community told us the changes the wanted to see at CDH, for example –

  • That the board have representation in all four municipalities. Check.
  • That we increase board membership – Check – we have a full complement of 12
  • That we increase diversity on the board – check! But diversity wasn’t the focus during recruitment, it came about as a result of good qualified people applying for board membership. It bears mentioning that diversity isn’t always visible. But this board is diverse in its talent, professions, backgrounds, and interests.
  • That we rotate meetings throughout Halton. Sort of Check We started that process with a meeting in Milton, but the pandemic brought that to a halt.

As Chair Mowbray challenged her colleagues to ask: : Where are we? Where is CDH really?

The Pandemic forced the cancellation of workshops and fee-for-service projects.  Sustainability for CDH is through those avenues and staff is working hard to regain lost ground but the threat of burnout is ever-present.  More financial resources are needed.  She urged the Board to take ownership of this task, a task mandated for all NFP boards – to support the work of the organization.

“To substantially increase our output – workshops, fees-for-service events, we need more staff, to get more staff we need more money.

“What I am saying is that it’s a matter of outreach. We each need to utilize our contacts, reach out, make sure they understand exactly what it is that CDH does; create opportunities for engagement, opportunities where our Executive Director might be of help, perhaps to close a deal.

“To that end, the single biggest issue is trying to explain what CDH is, what it does, what we do.

The volunteer side of things is easier – though I wouldn’t want Heather Thompson or Heather Johnson to think that I think their jobs are easy – far from it.

We need new ideas for increasing our resources. We don’t have the sob story that pulls at the heart strings and makes people empty their wallets. CDH is unique. Can we turn that uniqueness into an asset?

On that note, if you haven’t already, I would remind everyone, to be sure to pay your 2021/2022 membership fees before the end of December.  (CDH Board members are expected to join the organization and pay a membership fee)

They are financially supported by the Hamilton-Halton United Way  and the Region of Halton.

And with that Jan Mowbray said thank you and then almost burst into tears.

The 2021-2022 Board consists of:

Ann Lawlor, president
Joanne McKiernan, Vice President
Ancilla Ho-Young, Secretary
Juan Barangote, Treasurer
Andrew Falls, Nominations & Governance
Nilo Yousof
Fawzia Patel
Steph Nguyen
Gay Loveland
Marg Connor
Bolu Babatope
Jan Mowbray, past president


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Burlington Bulls took it all at the Back to School Blast in Kitchener

By Staff

September 30th, 2021



This past weekend, the 2011 AAA Burlington Bulls won the 10U/11U Back to School Blast in Kitchener.

The Burlington Bulls 2011 AAA is made up of kids from Burlington born in 2011 or after. The team plays in the COBA loop (Central Ontario Baseball Association). The loop contains Rep teams throughout Central Ontario.

The tournament last weekend (Sept 24-26) was The Back to School Blast hosted by Kitchener Panthers. The Bulls went undefeated over two days besting 10U/11U teams from Kitchener, Guelph and Waterloo. They faced Waterloo in the Championship game, winning a tightly contested affair 2-1.

  • Boys played lights out on both sides of the ball. They outscored their opponents 36-5 in round robin play, securing a birth in the championship.
  • Team combined for 58 hits and 15 stolen bases over 4 games.
  • Owen Simpson belted a Home Run securing our place in the championship.
  • Christian Moscato pitched lights out in the championship game going five innings allowing 1 hit, 1 earned run and striking out 14 on zero walks.
  • Nate Ogiltree came in as relief in the championship game going two innings allowing 2 hits , no runs and striking out 3.

From Left to Right:: Back row: Bronson Kung, Coltin Hamor, Brayden McPetrie, Christian Moscato, Owen Simpson. Front row: Henry Hooper, Colton McEntee, Nate Ogiltree, Ryan Wallace, Tripp Mihalik. Missing: Carter Boyko, Jordan Colameco, Owen Petrie Coaches: Bob Hooper, John Ogiltree, Kyle Mihalik. Coaches: Bob Hooper, John Ogiltree, Kyle Mihalik

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One Burlington celebrates the faith and culture of our Indigenous peoples.

By Staff

September 26th, 2021



One Burlington celebrates the diversity of faith and cultural groups in Burlington, Halton and area by hosting engaging multifaith, multicultural events.

In honour of Canada’s first National Truth and Reconciliation Day: September. 30th,  you are invited to an online Zoom event highlighting the faith and culture of our Indigenous peoples.

This is a free event funded in part by the City of Burlington and the Government of Canada.

Please register by Sept. 29th at:

Celebrating an Indigenous Harvest on 30th September starting at 7:30 pm with
– Indigenous Elder of the Mississaugas of the Credit, Carolyn King CM.

– Semiah Smith will performing singing and dancing of the Mohawk Nation at Crawford Lake
– Sherry Saevil of “Grandmothers’ Voice” of the Haudenosaunee at an Indigenous Healing Garden

To attend, please register by 29 September at:

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Advocates for climate change gather in Spencer Smith Park

By Max Bowder: Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

September 26th, 2021




The Burlington/Oakville Climate event was held in Spencer Smith Park yesterday to raise awareness of Climate Change with the mission of raising awareness and educating people on how to make a difference with the environment.

“We want to have people come, learn something about climate and have hope,” said event organizer, Aki Tanaka.

The event had a line up of two children’s choirs, a singing performance by Hayley Verrall, and powerful speeches. One such speech by Liana De Sousa was captivating and called for politicians to take immediate action against climate change.

Environmental groups such as Grand(m)others Act to Save the Planet, Burlington Green, Fridays for Future, and others came to the park hoping to convince people that climate change needs to be taken seriously and what they can do to limit their effects on the planet.

Grand(m)others Act to Save the Planet is a community group started by grandmothers but open to everyone with the purpose of making the planet livable for their grandchildren and everyone else. They have been operating since 2019, advocating to all levels of government and organizing community petitions and rallies.

Sign board at the climate change event held in Spencer Smith Park

Local and federal environmental organizations at the park explained the dangers of climate change and several ways they can make a difference in very large and impactful ways and small things regular people can do everyday.

Large things people can do is get involved in any of the organizations at the event such as Burlington Green and the Halton Environment Network.

These organizations work at raising awareness, particularly amongst  young people with the hope of “teach our children the wonders of the natural world.”

Other things people can do include calling on their local Member of Parliament (MP) and making sure they are aware of their concerns. The other thing is to get involved in any environmental group that does good and effective work in protecting the environment.

Small things people can do include recycling and limiting their consumption of meat and dairy products, together they contribute a total of 50% of all foods contributing to climate change. Planting trees also makes a difference.

Liana De Sousa was captivating – calling for politicians to take immediate action against climate change.

Several youth speakers raised awareness at the event with powerful words calling for immediate action against Global Warming saying we only have six years before we reach a point that can’t be undone making it a climate emergency.

“Dear Politicians, Everyday you continue to refuse to take action, you’re actively stealing the futures of your children, your grandchildren and every generation to come.” – Liana DeSousa

De Sousa is 17 years old and has been involved in public speaking for a few years including giving speeches at other events and at Hamilton city council meetings. DeSousa says there is much more to be done to bring carbon emissions down to zero and she will continue to advocate for the environment.

“We are continuing to do the fracking and old brick logging that needs to be stopped,” DeSousa said.

Event organizers had trouble getting stared with the event – delays due to high winds at the beginning and rainfall nearing the end. Despite the weather event organizers are happy with the way the event turned out.

Many people left the event feeling strongly about environmental action. Many also felt that not enough is being done on the federal level saying they are trying to please everyone, subsidizing fossil fuel extraction that contributes to carbon emissions and not raising the carbon emission taxes high or fast enough.

Environmental organizations to join:

Fridays for future –

Burlington Green –

Halton Environmental network –

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Fleet of model boats to take to the water on Centennial pond

By Alan Harrington

September 24th, 2021



Spencer Smith Park is a wondrous place that offers a little something for everyone.

Beneath the balcony at Spencer’s Restaurant lies the 10,000 sq ft Centennial Pond.

A model of the Canadian Coat Guard tub Spencer

Not just a reflecting pool, but space that over the past 15 summers has been where model boat displays take place.
Once that pond is filled in June, many RF modellers bring their creations down to get wet.

Some boats are hand-made out of wood, while others are kits with specially designed motors, propellers and electronics.

Everything from tiny pleasure craft to a huge Canadian Coast Guard ship.

There are sailboats, tugboats, fishing boats, navy ships – including a 3 foot black submarine.

Even an old wooden Alligator boat once used for logging in Northern Ontario

Referred to as “Alligator” boats these were used for logging in Northern Ontario

These boats can run from $200 to $1000+ depending on what’s in them and how long they took to build.

Batteries last about 30 minutes to an hour and they are controlled remotely with an RF handset.

The modellers are from Burlington and Hamilton and as far away as Mississauga.

The little boats are quite amusing and many people enjoy sitting by the pond to watch their interplay among the waves.

As the pleasant summer fades away and it gets darker earlier, there is one last show where the boats are lit up.

Last night was the night when about 18 model boats got dressed up with all-lights-a blazing to ply the waters.

The model boat fleet on the Centennial Pond water – drop by – the kids will love it.

One was a rowboat complete with a tiny yellow rower in a raincoat pulling on the oars.

Tug boat with the city flag

Spencer Smith Park is the ONLY place around this area with a suitable outdoor pond.

The boaters still come out until the day the pond is drained (ready to become an ice rink) so you may still be able to drop by and watch.

Anyone can bring their own boats down but be cautious of speedboats.

The boaters respect each other’s space and sometimes the boats do get close together.

Drop by this weekend.

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