Master ice sculptor to be at Royal Botanical Gardens - not to be missed.

Event 100By Staff

December 2, 2014



Watch sculpting master Michael Muli use various techniques to transform ice into art at the Royal Botanical Gardens.

Ice sculptor - Muli - head art

A master ice sculptor will be at the Royal Botanical Gardens December 6thand 7th. No to be missed.

Michael is creating an enormous 3D tribute to the RBG Train Show for kids to climb aboard. You can drop by and get your picture taken with the kids.

Be sure to stop by and get your photo taken with the final piece before it disappears!

Event takes place from December 6 (1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.); December 7 (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)


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Mayor to hold fund raiser three days after being sworn in.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

December 1, 2014



Aldershot Village sign Plains Rd

Sign at the western gateway to the city.

With the chain of office officially his for the next four years Mayor Rick Golding can settle in and make Burlington a better place.

One of the first things that he did as Mayor for the 2014-18 term was get his picture taken in front of spanking new sign telling traveler’s they are about to enter the village of Aldershot.

Later today the Mayor will give his Inaugural address and possibly even give us a peek at his thinking for the next four years.

Foxcroft and Mayor Goldring - the Foxcroft look

The guy on the left, Mayor Goldring, invited the guy on the right, Ron Foxcroft, to give the keynote speech at the guy on the right’s Inaugural event. The guy on the right is funnier than the guy on the left.

Mayor Goldring managed to let himself get upstaged by Ron Foxcroft who will deliver the Keynote address – there will be at least one joke at the Mayor’s expense.

On Thursday the Mayor will glad hand with those invited to a fund raiser to pay off his election campaign debt. Goldring fully expected the 2014 election to be a cake walk; there wasn’t a challenger on the horizon other than Anne Marsden who has run frequently in the past.

Council will begin to take care of business on the 15th when the Standing Committees meet.

Goldring had a campaign team which amounted to a collection of names; no one expected to have to do anything. Then out of the blue came Peter Rusin who did very poorly in the vote count but did manage to keep the Mayor on his toes for a couple of weeks.
Fund raising for Mayoral races usually gets done well before the election. If funds have to be raised after the election it is usually because there was a very hard fought race. That certainly wasn’t the case this time around – did the Mayor get caught flat footed on this one?

Expect anyone who thinks they can curry a little favour with the Mayor to happily accept an invitation to this event. The Gazette wasn’t invited.


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Belle Epoch theme planned for AGB 2015 Art Auction; that will be different!

Event 100By Pepper Parr

December 1, 2014



The Art Gallery of Burlington is proud of its rich tradition in hosting an annual, live art auction. The event is a critical fund raiser for the AGB which sees itself as the heart of arts and culture in the region.

With an inspiring variety of exhibitions, education programs and an acclaimed Canadian contemporary ceramics collection, it is vital that AGB raise funds to continue to offer enriching programs to our community and keep the galleries free and accessible to all, seven days a week. Thus the art sale.

The next will be their 36th year and will be grown into a week-long celebration of visual art with local, regional and national artists.
It all begins May 31st and runs through to – June 6th, 2015. Mark those dates on your calendar.

Wine poster - Belle Epoch

The Belle Epoch was a time of new ideas, emerging artists and rife with political controversy. There was a World’s Fair held in Paris – the world was alive with new wealth and ideas – it all ended with the start of the First Great War

This week-long celebration features: an Art Sale; a live auction as well as a Silent AuctionThis year there is going to be a theme to set a tone. The AGB people are stretching their wings and actually getting creative. They have chosen La Belle Époque as the theme, which we are told came out of the creative mind of Cheryl Goldring, chair of the Planning committee and an artist with a reputation of her own

Belle Époque was a period characterized by optimism, peace at home and in Europe, new technology and scientific discoveries. The peace and prosperity in Paris allowed the arts to flourish, and many masterpieces of literature, music, theater, and visual art gained recognition. The Belle Époque was named, in retrospect, when it began to be considered a “golden age” in contrast to the horrors of World War I.

J'accuse front page Belle Epoch

For a citizen of France to accuse the President of the Republic in a newspaper front page letter was unheard of – those were heady times. The Art Gallery of Burlington wants to re-create some of that era with a theme for the 2015 Art Auction.

In the newly rich United States, emerging from the Panic of 1873, the comparable epoch was dubbed the Gilded Age.  In the United Kingdom, the Belle Époque overlapped with the late Victorian era and the Edwardian era. In Germany, the Belle Époque coincided with the reigns of Kaiser Wilhelm I & II and in Russia with the reigns of Alexander III and Nicholas II.

All that rich history will be wrapped into a theme that will set a tone considerable different than previous art auctions. The city can perhaps attend an event that has the potential to get away from the stodginess that has at times crept into AGB events. Looks like they are going to zip it up a bit.

There is also going to be a 200 for $200 event; 200 painting priced at $200 each. That should appeal to the younger set that wants to begin collecting seriously.

The Planning committee wants the public to party like it’s 1889 when the world celebrated the opening of the World’s Fair in Paris and the coming of age of Impressionism. That might be a bit of a stretch – after all this is Burlington.

The Art Gallery of Burlington will be transformed into a Parisian market as guests are immersed in late 19th Century Paris with all the exciting sights and sounds of that vibrant era; art, music, jugglers, dancers, cafes, bistros and marketplaces.

The committee planning this event includes: Cheryl Goldring, Chair, Susan Busby, Anne Brownell, AGB, Catherine Brady, Cheryl Soderlund, AGB, Louise Cooke, Kim Varian, AGB and Don Graves.
Submission packages for artists can be downloaded here.


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Country and western singer Hayley Verall to sing national anthem at council swearing-in on Monday.

theartsBy Pepper Parr

November 30th, 2014



It won’t be the cowboy hat and the blue jeans Monday evening for Haley Verrall, the Nelson High student, who will take to the stage and lead the people at the Performing Arts Centre in the singing of O’Canada as they witness the Swearing In of the new city council.
Hayley is a young, 17, Burlingtonian who is fashioning a career as a singer song-writer who wants to change the world with words and music.

She took part in the city’s culture week and was recognized by Angela Pap Paparizo at city hall and then got a call from the Mayor’s office asking if she would be interested in singing the national anthem for the Swearing In.

Both Hayley and her Mom Kim couldn’t say yes fast enough. The question then was – “Do I have to wear a dress” asked Hayley.

Hayley Varall - sweet smile at piano

Hayley Verrall at the keyboard. She will sing the national anthem at the Performing arts Centre during swearing-in of new city council.

The budding artist has six songs written, a CD with her picture on the cover and more lyrics in the works. Her preference is country and western – with bluegrass where her heart really lies at this point in her career.

Hayley plays piano, trumpet, ukulele, banjo and guitar – you know which the favourite is as she slides the guitar strap over her should and adjusts the instrument to her body and strokes the strings.

Hayley plays around town wherever she can get herself in front of a microphone in Burlington. She has a spot in Waterdown that makes her welcome as well.

Hayley Verrall - standing with guitar

The guitar is her instrument of choice. Hayley Verrall singing “Follow Your Dreams”.

Besides being a musician, Hayley is a gamer. She thinks university is in her future with McMaster or Western as the destination for her. Teaching music is something she thinks she could do quite well – but the long term career isn’t the real focus for Hayley. Right now it is writing some and playing wherever she can find people who want to listen

Her Mom, Kim gets a credit as the co-writer for several of the songs written so far. Described as a musician with influences as diverse as country, rock and pop Hayley has been written up as “a versatile performer who blends her instinctive attitude for fresh melodies with a consistent background as a skilled classical pianist.”

Music for Hayley is more than simple entertainment; it is a medium to inspire, share and tell stories that can relate to an audience in a unique way.

We won’t get to hear the true love music on Monday – not unless Hayley rolls from the national anthem to “Young Gambler”, a featured piece on her CD titled: You Ain’t seen Trouble Yet.


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WANTED! Female under 5'7

News 100 redBy Staff

November 29, 2014



Are you female? Under 5’7” tall?

Sound of Music Leisl

If you can sing “16 going on 17” there is a place on a stage for you.

Do you look the part of “Liesl” from The Sound of Music?

Can you sing “16 Going on 17”?

Then fame and fortune await you – well maybe not fortune.

The people who run Koogle Theatre would like to talk to you about their upcoming concert with Symphony on the Bay “An Afternoon of Rodgers and Hammerstein”

If you’re interested pop them a note:

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Learn more about synchronized swimming and try some of the moves - Centennial Pool - Saturday.

Event 100By Staff

November 29, 2014



If you haven’t got your weekend plans worked out and you are looking for something different to do with the kids – what do you think about Synchronized Swimming ?

The Burlington Synchronized Swimming Club (BSSC) invites families and friends to join us for a FREE family swim as part of the Burlington Sports Festival. Celebrate the power of sport that builds strong communities and get active with BSSC!

Synchronized swimming

Join the Synchronized Swimming Club at the Centennial pool to learn more about synchronized swimming and try some of the moves.

Did you know that synchronized swimming is a hybrid form of swimming, dance and gymnastics, consisting of swimmers performing a synchronized routine of elaborate moves in the water, accompanied by music?

Join us to learn more about synchronized swimming and try some of the moves.

SATURDAY, November 29, 2014 from 3:00 – 4:30 P.M. at the Centennial Pool, 5151 New Street,

Have fun with a FREE family swim that includes a “try it” session offered by BSSC



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Get a close look at how the police do their jobs and consider a career in policing.

News 100 blueBy Staff

November 28, 2014



Are you a teen in the Halton Region who would like to understand more about the Police, Ethnicity and Culture (PEACE) in our communities?

Are you interested in a career in policing?

Have you ever wondered what the police do, how they prevent and investigate crimes and what the different units within the service are responsible for?

Would you like to have hands-on practical experience of what it’s like to be a police officer?

HRPS crestIf you are 15 – 18 years old and the answers to these questions are yes, maybe you’d like to check out the Halton Regional Police PEACE program!

There are still spots available for the Winter Police Ethnic and Cultural Education (PEACE) program, which runs from 6:30 – 9:00 pm every Tuesday night for twelve weeks, starting January 20, 2015 and April 7, 2015.

Each week, students will be given presentations by the different units and bureaus within the police service, with the emphasis being on practical demonstration and involvement. As well, students will learn about cultural awareness and inclusion, how the police service strives to provide equitable service for all communities within our Region and how we are educating new Canadians and recent immigrants about policing in Canada.

You can find out more about this free, voluntary program by visiting our website and clicking on Diversity.

Just complete the application form on line and Email it to the Diversity Coordinator at the contact information on the form.


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The Nucracker to have a three day, four performance run at the Performing Arts Centre: December 18-20.

Event 100By Staff

November 28, 2014



It’s not quite Christmas without taking in a performance of The Nutcracker,

There will be four runs of  Tchaikovsky`s renowned ballet at the Performing Arts Centre December 18th, 19th and 20th.

Nutcracket - National Ballet of CUBA 2The Canadian Ballet Youth Ensemble (CBYE) will be presenting their critically acclaimed production of The Nutcracker featuring the world renowned National Ballet of Cuba.

The CBYE has been bringing arts and culture to the local community since 1991 by collaborating creatively alongside the National Ballet of Cuba in addition to hosting and producing countless shows with a wide range of Canada’s most captivating dancers.

Under the direction of Hamilton Arts and Entertainment Ambassador Ms. Gurdil-Diamante, The Nutcracker features the National Ballet of Cuba’s finest dancers accompanied by an ensemble of talented children from Hamilton and Burlington. The Nutcracker is the perfect ballet experience to delight both first-time attendees and life-long lovers of the art; a cherished seasonal classic for young and old alike.

Nutcracker - National Ballet of CUBAGary Smith, Theatre and Dance Critic for the Hamilton Spectator said “It’s the most authentic, most moving, most spirited Nutcracker there is. It’s filled with the joy and love of Alicia Alonso’s thrilling choreography and Tchaikovsky’s music. Best of all it’s performed with the passion and heart only these Cuban dancers can bring to ballet.”,

Dates for this limited run are:

Thursday, December 18, 2014
Opening Night Performance: 7:30 pm

Friday December 19, 2014
Evening Performance: 7:30pm

Saturday December 20, 2014
Matinee Performance: 2:00 pm
Final Performance: 7:30 pm

VIP tickets, which include a meet and greet with the award-winning dancers and the best seats in the house are available for each evening performance.

Click here for the Box office or call 905-681-6000

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Women of St. Stephen's charge $5 for a potluck and raise $1263.80 that gets turned into $3791.40

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

November 27, 2014



They are the backbone of the community.

There are all kinds of men’s clubs and organizations but they don’t have a hope when they have to go up against a church’s woman’s group.

Woman of St. Stephen's

The red Flood Relief T-shirts were evident.

The Woman’s Group at St. Stephen’s United Church seem to be just that much feistier than many this reporter has met with.

They turned over a cheque for $1,263.80 and broke into applause when Laura Pizzacalla of th3e Burlington Community Foundation told them that the money they raised would be matched by the province on a two for one basis to arrive at total of $3791.40

The women of St. Stephen held a pot luck “breakfast for dinner” that had a $5 ticket price. They apparently had no problems with getting creative about just what a “pot luck” is either. They held their first ever Silent Auction and raised $700 of their total that way.

Linda Draddy - St Stephen's

Linda Draddy runs the meetings of the Women’s Group at St. Stephens.

Linda Draddy appears to run the women’s group – not the kind of woman many people actually say no to – she has a way about her. Sitting off to one side is the groups Secretary, Nelly Ferrell; a quick glance at Nelly and you know she has been taking the minutes for quite a while.

During the fund raising drive the Burlington Community Foundation has run there have been dozens of small groups that found a way to raise funds. Some in the group had their homes flooded but they had time to help others out.

One woman asked if there was still a need for furniture. Another wanted to know how to get the application forms.
With the cheque presentation – Linda Draddy moved the group on to the next item on the agenda; approving the cost of the refreshments for a funeral reception.

Nelly Ferrell - St Stephen's secretary

Nelly Ferrell, secretary to the group. She has probably been taking the minutes for years.

They are indeed the backbone of the community. This was a small group, tucked away in a corner of ward 3 with a larger Catholic Church across the street and a school couple of hundred yards away. There were no dignitaries on hand; the ward Councillor wasn’t there to get his picture taken, the Mayor didn’t make an appearance. One of the men from the Church Council was on hand,

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Writers workshop to take place at Tansley Wood library.

Event 100By Staff

November 25, 2014



HiWire posterBring your pen and pad, come with some ideas or just ready to write.

Prompts will be provided, sharing is requested, but not mandatory.

All writing styles welcome, ages 12 and up.

This workshop is provided for FREE, but donations are accepted.

Thursday – Tansley Woods Library 7-9

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Why not let the public ask questions at the Swearing In on December 1st? Sure it is a bit risky but people have things to say.

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

November 19, 2014



I found myself thinking about the Swearing in ceremony that is going to take place December 1st at the Performing Arts Centre and wondered why the Mayor or perhaps one of the council members or maybe the manager of the city’s communications department or – heaven forbid, the people who are supposed to be working on “community engagement” – didn’t look for ways to open up the evening.

There will be as many as 700 people in the Main Theatre at the Performing Arts Centre. What an opportunity for this Council to use the occasion to actually listen to what residents have to say.

The organizers of the event could have four or five of those hand held microphones and the Mayor could invite people to ask questions of any member of Council.

These wouldn’t be delegations – just people asking questions.

Limit the time for this part to say 30 minutes. Anyone can ask any question. All they have to do is stand up and have the microphone placed in their hands. The questions would have to be short and direct

It wouldn’t hurt if there were a little back and forth permitted as well.

People in this city have things to say. Many will have nice things to say while others will ask pointed questions.

Somebody will have to control the event. Have current General Manager Scott Stewart take on that task; he’s pretty good at managing this kind of event. It will give the public a chance to see the man in action; they are going to be reading a lot more about the guy in the near future.

Is it risky? A bit – but leaders are supposed to lead – show by example. There are not many occasions when there are 700 citizens in one place and every member of Council in that place as well.

Worth a try folks and there is still time to juggle the agenda – no one is going to mind the additional half hour. Most people will stay glued to their seats waiting to hear the questions.

No pre-screening the questions – whatever comes out – comes out.

It will take a little courage but it is worth it.

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Valuable cost-saving tips to make homes more energy-efficient to be shared at sustainability event.

Event 100By Staff

November 19, 2014



No one ever went wrong talking about energy saving – especially when the temperature outside was double digit below and when our friends in Buffalo were getting more than two feet of snow.

Burlington’s Sustainable Development Committee will host a free event on Nov. 25 for homeowners to help reduce home energy costs.

The annual CleanUp-GreenUp campaign Burlington Green organizwes ends with a gathering of the environmental clan at city hall.  One of these years it isn't going to rain on the CleanUp-GreenUp day.

Lynn Robichaud, the city’s senior sustainability coordinator takes part in almost every environmental event in the city – heading up the energy efficiency seminar later this month.

Takes place Tuesday, Nov. 25 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Burlington Public Library, Central Branch, at 2331 New St.

“Homeowners can learn valuable cost-saving tips to make their home more energy-efficient,” said Lynn Robichaud, the city’s senior sustainability coordinator. “Industry experts will be on hand to answer questions.”

Participating organizations include: Burlington Hydro, GreenVenture, Halton Region, Philips Lighting and Union Gas.

In 1990, the City of Burlington declared itself a Sustainable Development Community and set up the Sustainable Development Committee as an advisory body to City Council.

The role of this volunteer citizens’ committee, which includes members of the public and the business community, is to get people talking about sustainable development and to integrate economic and environmental planning at the municipal level.

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City Council will be sworn in at the Performing Arts Centre on December 1st - plenty of seating.

News 100 redBy Staff

November 19, 2014



They are taking the show on the road.

On December 1, the Mayor and the six council members will take their places on the main stage of the Performing Arts Centre and be sworn in.

In 2010 the city spring for some pretty good food – this time it will be coffee and a cookie with pop for the kids. It looks as if that great bar in the Centre won’t be open. Shame.

Mayor and chair

The Mayor`s chair and his chain of office will get taken to the Performing Arts Centre for the Swearing in on December 1.

Moving the swearing in to the Performing Arts Centre will allow for many more citizens and city hall staff to attend. Each Council member will have ten tickets to distribute for reserved seats – the Mayor gets twenty tickets.

The Burlington Teen Tour Band will take part and Hayley Verrall will sing O’Canada.

New this year will be words from Ron Foxcroft who will be the keynote speaker. He is expected to use some thought from a basketball player who talked of “elevating his game”. Foxcroft wants the city to “elevate” its game.

Justice Dale S. Fitzpatrick will oversee the swearing in while the Venerable Stephen Hopkins of St. Christoper`s Anglican Church will do the Blessing.

The Ten Tour BAnd won't be in the FAmily room at the Performing Arts Centre but there will be kids running all over the place. Some will get to tickle the keys on the Grand Piano in the Main Theatre.

The Burlington Teen Tour Band officially opened the Performing Arts Centre a few years ago. They will march during the Council Swearing in on December 1 in the Main Theatre.

The Mayor will also deliver his Inaugural address. We might get to hear some of the “setup” he mentioned in his election campaign but never did expand on.

The Mayor’s chair will be transported to the Performing Arts Centre. There will be seating for each Council member, the interim city manager and Clerk Angela Morgan on the stage with space made available for the Judge, the Clergyman and other speakers.

The event will begin at 6:30 pmThe Main Theatre can hold 700+ people.

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Fortinos writes a big cheque for Disaster Relief; residents who need financial support MUST have their forms in before December 15th

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

November 19, 2014


Another cheque presentation; another photo op – you wonder if they are all the same and why we bother doing them.

Fortinos store sign

Cashier aisles at Fortinos told the story about the help needed and citizens responded.

Making a financial contribution is hard work for the people doing the convincing to get a corporation to write a big cheque and for the people who work for that corporation – it is a big deal. Their employer gave something back to the community.
For the staff at Fortinos – all four locations in Burlington, the T-shirts that were handed out were a statement that every one of them was proud to make.

BCF Fortini chq presentation

Disaster Relief chair Ron Foxcroft on the left celebrates with BCF president Colleen Mulholland and the four Fortinos franchise owners in Burlington: Guelph Line: Joe Mangiapane; Appleby, Frank Scornaienchie; Aldershot Paul Anderson and New Street Photis Kelpis






Yesterday Fortinos proudly presented their cheque for $38,191.36 Which put the Flood Disaster Relief drive over the $900,000 level – and while the official fund raising drive has closed the Burlington Community Foundation can collect funds up to December 15th. That is the date on which the provincial government asks what they have in the bank and matches that amount of a two-for-one basis.

The drive now is to get that $900,000 up to $1 million so that there will be $3 million available for distribution.

The Fortino contribution was the result of a corporate donation which will follow and small amount collected by the cashers in each of their four locations. Those funds were collected in a very short ten day period.

The task now is to make sure those funds get into the hands of people who were un-insured or under insured. There are many families in the flood stricken parts of the city who could not buy insurance – it just isn’t available to them. And – a significant number of those people have suffered more than one flood.

This is not a situation where people were financially irresponsible – their insurance companies said no.

The provincial funding comes from the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program (ODRAP) for which Burlington had to apply.

The original application was actually turned down – it took a lot of telephone calls and some considerable arm twisting to get the province to change its mind. A lot of the credit for that goes to the MPP for Burlington, Eleanor McMahon.

The ODRAP program has severe limits on what it can provide money for. If a furnace was destroyed, if a washer and a dryer were destroyed – those are covered, but if you had an expensive Persian rug in the family room on the lower level the province is not going to advance funds to buy a new one. You will get money for a new rug – but you won’t be replacing that Persian rug with provincial money.

The key word in the program is relief.

The deadline for financial support applications is December 15- and that is a hard deadline. The Burlington Community Foundation has received more than 75 applications for financial support but believe there are still as many as 100 homes that qualify for support who have not yet submitted their forms. The document people are required to complete is complex but – and this is important – there are people at the BCF in place to help you.

BCF mailer side A

3100 of these cards have been mailed to those home in flood ravaged parts of the city advising residents that financial support is available but that there is a December 15th deadline.

You may not have some of the information the forms ask for – don’t let hold you back. The insurance people in place have software tools that will help them figure out some of the information needed. What is critical and important is this – you must have your forms in before December 15th or you will not be able to participate in the program.

The BCF has prepared a mailing piece the city is sending out to 3100 home owners advising them of the program. Funds have been raised – the community has done a magnificent job of donating the funds for those who were flooded.

The objective now is to make sure everyone who needs help gets the help they need.

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Friends of Sheldon Creek and others clean up after irresponsible residents who treat it as a dump.

News 100 blueBy Staff

November 16, 2014



It was certainly an eye sore but it wasn’t really clear who owned the land and who was responsible for its upkeep. The Conservation Authority is in there somewhere – they are the ones who are responsible for ensuring that the flow of water through creeks in Halton is words

Sheldon Creek clean up aerial map

T he red line shows the portion of Sheldon Creek that got a solid clean up from volunteers and a corporation that cared enough to ask their staff to pitch in and clean up a mess.

The call went out anyone who wanted to help clean an illegal dump site near Harvester between Appleby and Burloak. “You are invited to participate and/or share this event with your friends. The dump is adjacent to a parking lot behind 977 Century Drive.  Bellwyck Medical Services had property that backed onto the creek and their staff did a large part of the work one weekend.

The rest got done by a small group of people who turned out on a crisp fall day to pick up trash and help transform about 200M of Sheldon Creek from the dumpiest section to one of the best. The group removed nearly 50 tires, half a dozen mattresses and about 20 bags of trash…

Sheldon Creek clean up - tires

More than 50 tires were pulled out from the creek area along with dozens of bags of trash and mattresses that were deliberately dumped.

The Field and Stream Rescue Team was the biggest group to show up along with people from Friends of Sheldon Creek and Corpus Christi High School.

Sheldon Creek dump 2

This garbage could have and should have been taken to the Regional dump. While the community has volunteer groups who took on this dirty task – where was the Conservation Authority? The creeks in the Region are their responsibility.


Personal thanks went out to the individuals who climbed up and down hills and braved the muck, burs and rose thorns to help Sheldon Creek not just become more beautiful, but better habitat for resident and visiting native flora and fauna. During the event, a Great Blue Heron and a Red Tailed Hawk dropped by. Coincidence? Maybe, but the group preferred to interpret their visit as an expression of gratitude.

Matthew, Cathy, Robyn, Jon, Ainsley, Vince, Jeff, Katie, David, Gen, Shane, Brad along with others were there. This is what community is all about.


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Ho, Ho, Ho man arrives at Burlington Mall by helicopter - reindeer and sleigh waiting for snow.

News 100 redBy Staff

November 15, 2014



Santa - helicopter coming in

Helicopter with Santa aboard arrives at the Burlington Mall.

The Ho, Ho, Ho man arrived at the Burlington Mall Saturday morning. He grabbed his bag of candy canes and headed for the store where he happily sat for hours getting his picture taken with kids on his knee and a smile on his face.

Santa - cookie help Gordana daughter

This is Santa’s “cookie” elf -handing out cookies to the crowds awaiting Santa’s arrival. Check out the pink tool belt with the kitchen utensils.  The elf learned her cooking skills at Tuck elementary school.

The event is an annual thing for the Burlington Mall. Santa will be “in residence” from
10:00 am – 8:00 pm on Fridays, from 10:00 am – 6:00 pm on Saturdays and from 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm on Sundays, starting November 15, 2014.

Once December hits and Santa and his elves have finished making toys for Christmas, he’ll be able to spend more time at his cabin.

Santa listens to gift list

Santa listens carefully to make sure he gets the gift request right.

His December hours are: 10:00 am – 8:00 pm Monday through Saturday, and 10:00 am – 6:00 pm on Sundays.

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Downtowners get to hear what developer wants to do at Locust and Elgin across from city hall and the Performing Arts Centre.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

November 15, 2014

Burlington, ON


She does it differently.

We get to many, but not all, of the local meetings Council members hold and while they each have their own style, ward 2 Councillor Marianne Meed Ward does do something uniquely different. She listens, she coaxes answers out of people and – yes she still talks too much. But her people – and those that show up are very much her people; like her and they trust her.

Elgin - Locust re-developmentThursday evening the community meeting was about a condominium project basically across the street from the Performing Arts Centre wrapped around what is currently the Melodia restaurant. City hall is across another one of the three streets that border this project.

Zoning for the property is four storeys – and that zoning is specific to the property. The developer wants to add an additional floor and is asking for a change in the zoning and the Official Plan.
Meed Ward tends to personally oppose this kind of change in both zoning and the Official Plan. She argues that it is not the city’s job to make changes in zoning so that a developer can gain additional density and this a higher return on their investment.

Zoning on the property:

Permits high density residential, office & commercial uses
Permits density between 51 & 185 units per hectare
Retail uses required at grade
No surface parking permitted
Min. height 2 storeys – max. 4 storeys
Other Downtown Core sites allow up to 8 storey height through rezoning.
This area has a specific policy restricting height to 4 storeys to maintain compatibility with residential uses to the north and west

Meed Ward tends to look for trade-offs – in return for the additional density she looks for some form of contribution to the city. It can be public art or an amenity from which the public will benefit.

The fifth floor in the design is set back by about three metres on each side so that it doesn’t add to the perceived height of the building. What wasn’t stated at the meeting was that the mechanical equipment will be on top of the fifth floor; adding a bit more height.

The design is both traditional and classic in looks with detailing to be done in stone and brick. There will be bay windows in each unit with balconies built into the side of the structure and not hanging out on the side of the building.

Whenever a developer asks for a change local residents bring up the old setting a “precedent” argument and developers do try to exploit that when they are looking for a change in the rules.

City planner Bruce Krushelnicki tirelessly tells people that a change made in one location does not mean the same change is going to be permitted elsewhere. Planners ask one question: Is this a good plan and if, in their judgement it is good planning , they say so in their staff report. Have they made mistakes in the past? You bet your ‘bippy’ they have – the Ghent Street development was a serious mistake that we predict history will prove to have been wrong.

The re-development would be a fine addition to the downtown part of the city. Some suggested that allowing five stories would put pressure on the single storey and two storey dwellings in the neighbourhood – and it will. Many of the properties on Locust do not make economic use of the land they site on. Some of the properties are historic in nature and have to be preserved and the Heritage Advisory committee will be asked for an opinion on their historic credibility. One of the structures used on the property that was purchased by the developer used to house the Blair Lancaster Spa – while the building is on the Registry it is hard to see much in the way of historic value to the structure. It actually looks a little shabby.

The Core District group which keeps a close eye on development in their immediate neighbourhood and everything in the ward is good at getting the troops out to oppose projects. It would be a large step forward if they moved beyond just opposing and got into some serious thinking about what they want their neighbourhood to look like 5, 10 and 20 years out.

Greenberg Ken

Ken Greenberg told Burlingtonians in 2012 that they could have much more input if development proposals brought to the city if they organized.

Noted planner Ken Greenberg was in Burlington in April of 2012, as part of the Mayor’s Insight series of events – one of the better things the Mayor did in his first term of office. Greenberg explained that it is possible for the residents of a neighbourhood to set out their basic principles and invite any developer with plans to meet with them.

That is a part of what happened Thursday evening but that event was organized by the ward Councillor – the residents themselves need to take control.

The architect and the developer that met with the public Thursday evening appeared to be quite willing to accommodate the audience. They have yet to take an application to the planning department. They were convinced to meet with the residents in the community – about 50 people attended and they listened. They will now go back to their drawing boards, perhaps make some changes and submit their application. They have bought and paid for the property so they have sin in the game.

The developer said that they usually build one bedroom units but that real estate people in Burlington advised them that the market wanted two bedroom size units. One parking space for each unit and ¼ of a parking space for each unit to accommodate visitors.

Burlington aerial of city looking at Locust up

The proposed development is two blocks north of this intersection. Adding a fifth storey to the proposed building is not going to change the texture or feel of the neighbourhood.

When built – the structure will add dignity and grace to the streetscape. There really wasn`t much to complain about with this project. The chatter in the Gazette`s comments section based on a piece we published telling people about the meeting had these words: One said: “I do however like the design and the extra story is stepped back nicely and does not appear to be detrimental. If I’m a resident, I’d rather be near a high-quality 5 story building, than a cheapo 4 story building. Or a parking lot that a developer is sitting on in hopes of building something big for that matter. Hopefully they can get this done whether it happens to be 4 stories or 5 stories is not really the most important issue.”

Peter Rusin, a candidate for Mayor said:  “This site is actually quite suitable for an 8-storey redevelopment. There is no reason for any of the old Meed Ward crazy type of resistance; that negative philosophy increases taxes for everybody, keeps unwanted upward pressure on housing price increases for everyone, and kills downtown businesses that hope to rely on more people living in the core. I just hope the old Meed Ward mentality changes in the new term of council. I hope she does her math homework; this assignment is easy. Go to eight stories and encourage even more intensified projects; The future of Burlington depends on it.”

Another astute observer made this comment: “The main difference between Ms. Meed Ward’s point of view and Mr. Rusin’s is that the electorate supported the former and rejected the latter.
A principle of good planning is that we establish a plan and be extremely prudent about changing it. I don’t believe we owe developers the “right” to make a living.

This is a good development. It will be pricy but there will be quality sticking out of every corner. We will be lucky to get it. At least that is my take.

Related content:

What Ken Greenberg had to say about involving the community.
Initial response to the project was divided.


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Three potters contribute more than 100 bowls each to the AGB Soup event. Guild members show their work as well.

theartsBy Staff

November 13, 2014



Soup - bowls on a display case

You choose your bowl, get it filled with soup, enjoy the meal at a table with friends and totter along to the Arts and Craft Sale elsewhere in the building.

Soup and a Bowl is reason enough to visit the Art Gallery of Burlington – the Christmas Arts and Craft Sale is what could keep you there long after lunch.

The Soup Bowl event has been taking place for 18 years with artists from around the province contributing the bowls that are used and then taken home.

The potters get a tax receipt for each bowl they make and a free ticket to the event for every ten bowls they make.

We asked: “Do some potters contribute more than one bowl?” “Oh my gosh” responded Anne Brownell, the staffer directing the promotion of this event, “we had people who made more than 100 bowls each.” Joanne Paas, Chu Luu and Greg Marshall contributed more than 100 bowls each.

We usually need between 700 and 800 bowls – we got 1500 this year so we are set for another year.

Soup - tables ready - BEST

The table setting would put a lot of Burlington restaurants to shame.

The event has always been popular. The table setting in the Shoreline Room is not that far from the way the dining room at the King Edward hotel is set up.

With a tummy filled with unique soups – it is a short walk to the north end of the AGB and an opportunity to purchase art and craft items on sale.

Arts and Craft Sale 2013

The AGB Guilds put on the Christmas Arts and Craft sale at the same time as the Soup Bowl event.

Artists in Burlington see this as one of the premiere events for them to market their work. Six of the AGB Guilds take part in the event – something not to be missed.

The Arts and Crafts sale runs from November 13th through to November 16th.


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Junior League shows three beautifully decorated homes - 32nd Annual Tour.

Event 100By Staff

November 13, 2014



This weekend, November 14th to 16th, the Junior League of Hamilton-Burlington (JLHB) unites with generous area designers, restaurants, and businesses to bring the Annual Holiday House Tour to Hamilton-Burlington for a 32nd year.

Visitors can tour three gorgeous homes, filled with stunning décor and holiday decorating ideas, and feel good about the fact they’re helping the Junior League to improve our community.

Jr League house tour logoThe 32nd Annual Junior League Holiday House Tour includes three beautiful homes in Burlington, Hamilton and Mount Hope. “You can expect lots of excitement this year. The decorators have great things planned and the homes are absolutely gorgeous!” says Raeanne Milovanovic, House Tour Chair.

Every year, generous homeowners loan their homes to the Junior League of Hamilton-Burlington (JLHB) and talented design professionals transform them to showcase stunning holiday décor and entertainment ideas. The public is invited to tour and view the incredible results. This year, the tour boasts three large homes showcasing a broad range of colours and styles.

Jr League tree picture“Often it’s the little things. Everyone can find ideas for their own home, while on the tour.” says Dianne Brown, president of the Junior League of Hamilton-Burlington.

The tour runs for three days from Friday, November 14th until Sunday, November 16th. Don’t miss the chance to tour these distinctive homes and enjoy some holiday spirit.

Tickets are available at: www.holidayhousetour.caAs the JLHB’s signature fundraiser, the 32nd Annual Junior League of Hamilton-Burlington Holiday House Tour of Distinctive Homes generates the financial resources to help the charitable organization, now in its 80th year, continue to make a lasting impact in the Hamilton-Burlington community. The JLHB’s current focus of young women affected by poverty grounds their volunteer efforts and resources in activities and partnerships across the community.

They are committed to helping women affected by poverty by enhancing their life skills and providing what the League can to help improve their chances for success.

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Two of Burlington's best to be recognized for their philanthropy which wasn't limited to donating money. Hard work and open hearts did it.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

November 12, 2014



Can someone really change the world with a giving heart?

The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), will tell you people can, through the giving of one’s time, talent or treasure, make a significant difference.

Seven philanthropists and organizations from the AFP Golden Horseshoe Chapter will be recognized for their commitment to supporting and inspiring philanthropy in their communities through the 7th Annual National Philanthropy Day (NPD) awards presentation. Two of these outstanding people are Burlington.

National Philanthropy Day® is set aside to recognize, and pay tribute to the great contributions that philanthropy – and those people active in the philanthropic community – have made to our lives, our communities and our world. Each year, AFP honours individuals and groups who, through their hard work and dedication, have enhanced and inspired philanthropy locally and around the globe.

National Philanthropy Day is officially recognized by the Government of Canada’s National Philanthropy Day Act. This acknowledges the important role philanthropy plays in building strong communities, promoting civic engagement and improving the lives of Canadians through the work of caring individuals and charitable organizations.

“We are celebrating those who have made significant contributions to philanthropy,” explains Roger Ali, President of the AFP Golden Horseshoe Chapter. “Volunteers, donors and fundraisers, and their dedication to doing good works for charities and causes within our regions is an inspiration to all of us,” he adds. “And we are part of something much broader; we share this day with some 50,000 people in more than 100 communities and around the world who are paying tribute to National Philanthropy Day in many distinct ways. I extend congratulations to all the award winners!”

Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser – Susan Busby: Nominated By: Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation
Not only has Susan Busby’s personal giving been instrumental to the success of ensuring state-of-the-art health services for our community, her volunteer contributions are equally inspiring as an active and valued member of the Joseph Brant Hospital and the Foundation’s Boards. She served as Chair of Board of Directors, Volunteer Governor, member of the Ambassadors Council and Campaign Cabinet member, just to name a few.

Busby Susan

Susan Busby; recipient of the 2014 Association of Fundraising Professionals Outstanding Volunteer award.


Susan is a true champion of children and youth in need. As a former teacher and principal, Susan recognized the importance of student success and achievement and dedicated her time to build the Halton Learning Foundation. Her involvement with the Nelson Youth Centres provided tremendous leadership as a tireless advocate and fundraiser. Through annual fundraisers she helped raise the profile of the organization in the community to support children’s mental health programs.

Susan exemplifies the true spirit and best qualities of our community. Her leadership and passion for engaging others to give truly represents philanthropy and the positive impact others can make in their community.

Outstanding Volunteer Fundraiser – Ron Foxcroft; Nominated by: Hillfield Strathallen College
Affectionately known as “Mr. Hamilton”, Ron Foxcroft is a passionate advocate for causes involving children and a healthy community, as well as a highly successful entrepreneur. In Ron’s words: “Building healthy bodies and minds makes for a stronger community. Recreation leads to a lifetime of better health, self-esteem, leadership and teamwork skills.”

Foxcroft Ron ACP

Ron Foxcroft; recipient of the 2014 Association of Fundraising Professionals Outstanding Volunteer award.

Ron has a steadfast belief that anything is possible with hard work, determination and the support of dedicated volunteers. He has an unwavering commitment to his philanthropy, the Hamilton/Burlington communities, and his untiring volunteerism. Ron never hesitates to use his broad network of connections and relationships to engage others and help him achieve his goals.

Over the years, he has been committed to a broad range of local causes including: McMaster University, St. Joseph’s Healthcare, Hillfield Strathallan College, Mohawk College, Hamilton Community Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters, McMasters Children’s Hospital and City Kidz, just to name a few. Countless individuals and organizations have benefitted from his volunteerism and he is an incredible inspiration and role model for leadership and generosity.

The above is what the Association of Fundraising professionals had to say about Busby and Foxcroft. Here’s the real skinny on those two. Susan Busby will tell you that she has a saint of a husband who has been beside her every step of the way – and then some. Marie, Ron Foxcroft’s wife will tell you that she gave up trying to keep up with Ron. She’s happy when he gets home.

You could not find two people more unlike each other than Foxcroft and Busby. Busby uses her skills as a high school principal to let people understand how something should get done. She has that remarkable ability to let people figure out what she has in mind – and then she helps them get it done.

During her various assignments at the hospital Busby had to deal with people who had very healthy egos; she dealt with those egos very effectively, a testament to her length of service to the hospital and the wider community.

Foxcroft is a little more aggressive. He twists arms – nicely – but you know your arm is being twisted and if you’ve been around Burlington at all – give in when he calls.

Ron is the kind of guy who can keep a secret but he does that a little differently than most of us. He tells you the secret and makes you promise not to pass it on – and then he holds you to that promise.
Mayor Goldring called Ron Foxcroft when he needed help with raising funds for Flood Disaster Relief. Foxcroft had cheques on the table before the end of the week and began going through his Rolodex and making calls.

He set an ambitious target and then did a number on the provincial government to ensure that they too came through with the commitment Burlington needed. MPP Ted McMeekin, responsible for the Flamborough to the west of us was also the Minister who would have to sign off on the funding.

McMeekin got the Foxcroft treatment for three solid days – the man may never be the same. But earlier this week the local MPP’s, Indira Nadoor-Harris and Eleanor McMahon announced that the provincial government would provide up to $3 million to Burlington on a two-for-one basis; for every dollar we raised the province would add two dollars.

Ron Foxcroft didn’t start making calls during the media event at which the announcement was made – but he was on the phone while driving home – a hands free phone.

Fund raising ends on Friday, the evening Foxcroft and Busby are to be recognized. Will Ron walk from table to table asking for cheques – and has he put the touch on Susan Busby yet?

Two fine people being recognized for decades of personal philanthropy – kudos to the two of them.


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