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

Return to the Front page

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,

Return to the Front page

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

Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.


Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.


Return to the Front page

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.


Return to the Front page

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.

Return to the Front page

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.


Return to the Front page

Burlington artists and the Guilds at the AGB holding their annual Christmas Sale.

theartsBy Staff

November 11, 2014



Join the Arts Burlington Council in starting off the holiday season.

They will be conducting their annual Christmas Fine Art and Craft Sale, which takes place at the Art Gallery of Burlington (AGB) Thursday, November 13 – Sunday, November 16.

Dewey platesThe six Arts Burlington guilds participating in the event include: Latow Photographers Guild, Burlington Potters Guild, Burlington Fine Arts Association, Burlington Rug Hooking Craft Guild, Burlington Hand Weavers and Spinners Guild, and the Burlington Sculptors and Woodcarvers Guild.

The guilds continue to be an integral part of the AGB (formerly The Burlington Art Centre) since its inception more than 35 years ago. As drivers of arts and culture in the community, together the Art Gallery of Burlington and Arts Burlington strengthen the cultural landscape. With objectives to develop and maintain onsite and outreach programs, creative outlets and the expansion of visual arts, both organizations require support from the community. Providing an opportunity to increase public awareness of their services, this event is an important fundraiser for Arts Burlington and the Art Gallery of Burlington.

We invite you to come and take part in gift shopping from the unique works of art provided by the six guilds. In keeping with holiday tradition, there is a special tree filled with small gift items made by the guilds. All proceeds of these specially made items will go to the Art Gallery of Burlington.

Additionally, the AGB is hosting the always well attended Soup Bowl event. For more information and tickets (get them soon!) please visit

Thursday, November 13 – 11am-3pm
Friday, November 14 – 11am-9pm
Saturday, November 15 – 11am-4pm
Sunday, November 16 – 11am-4pm
The Place:
Art Gallery of Burlington
1333 Lakeshore Road
Burlington, Ontario


Return to the Front page

Province will give Burlington up to $3 million on a two for one matching formula. Some funds will flow before the end of the year.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

November 10, 2014



There is so much money coming to Burlington from the provincial government that Ron Foxcroft offered to loan the city a couple of Fluke Transport trucks to get it from Toronto to Burlington.

Ron Foxcroft is the owner of Fluke Transport and the Chair of the Burlington Community Foundation Disaster Relief Fund Raising Committee.

BCF - Foxcroft - Nadoo HArris, McMAhon - MAyor Goldring

From the left: Ron Foxcroft, Burlington MPP Eleanor McMahon, HAlton MPP Indira Nadoor Harris and Mayor Rick Goldring preparing to speak at the media conference where the provincial contribution of $3 million for disaster relief was announced.

MPPs Indira Nadoor-Harris of Halton and Eleanor McMahon, who represents Burlington in the provincial legislature, jointly announced this morning at a city hall media conference that the province has a approved a total of $3 million for Burlington to be given on a two-for-one basis.

If Burlington raises $1.5 million the province will send us $3 million

The Burlington Community Foundation has to date raised very close to $900,000

The 100 day campaign that Ron Foxcroft announced in August will come to a formal close on November 14th – this Friday.

Foxcroft has said there are still some significant corporate contributions to come in and the public can continue to donate until December 14th.

Mulholland at microphone with Moyle

Burlington Community Foundation president Collen Mulholland opens the media conference where the province announced grants of up to $3 million for Burlington. Regional Chair Gary Carr and Burlington Interim city manager Pat Moyle look on.

On December 15th donations close as to applications for financial support.

The funds raised will begin to be distributed once the deadline for applications closes. People who were uninsured or under insured are the only ones eligible for financial support – and that support covers just household essentials.

If the furnace was damaged – you will get compensation. If that 52 inch high definition television set was damaged – think in terms of a smaller less expensive television set.

That Persian rug you had will not be considered essential.

Forms for application for financial support are on the Burlington Community Foundation.

Return to the Front page

Residents opposed to a five story condominium on property with a four storey only zoning.

News 100 redBy Staff

November 10, 2014



This Thursday Nov. 13th at 7pm., Rm 305, at City Hall, the city and Ward 2 Councillor Marianne Meed Ward will host a public meeting to review the proposed five story condominium for the property at Blathwayte Lane and Elgin Street (Stretching over to Locust Street).

The lots are zoned as four storeys maximum. Five storeys will require a zone change and zone changes on any property in St. Luke’s Precinct will set a precedent toward other zone changes.

St lukes precinct 5 storey proposal

Area residents do not approve of an additional storey being added to a proposed condominium in the community.

The St. Luke’s precinct residents have been very successful in having developers stick to the rules and the zoning given to a property.

This meeting is an early stage of the process event where the developer is gauging community reaction. The precinct residents see this as a critical first meeting where they can influence a design and urge to the developer to adjust the building to fit within zone or take their model somewhere else.

St. Luke’s is an easy 15 minute walk from the intersection of Lakeshore Road and Martha Street where a developer wants to put up a 28 storey structure on a site zoned for a maximum of eight storeys.  While there has been strong reaction to the Martha Street project that part of the city has not had the same success as the people in St. Luke’s.


Return to the Front page

Citizens advising government in more than a token way: democracy appears to still have some life left in it.

Event 100By Pepper Parr

November 6, 2014



Local government works best when the people in the community play a meaningful role in the determination of what the tax rates should be and what the money raised is to be spent on.

Bureaucrats can`t do it all. In Burlington, many of the senior people don`t live in the city 0- their relationship with citizens is for the most part paper based and interactions at committee or Council meetings.

Burlington has a number of Advisory Committees – some work exceptionally well while others are a mess. This reporter has sat in on two Advisory Committee meetings where members were throwing copies of reports at each other.



Nicholas Leblovic. chair of the now sunset Waterfront Advisory committee.  Some Advisory Committees work well – others don’t.

The city has created Advisory Committees and shut them down before they completed a full term; that was the fate of WAPA – the Waterfront Access and Protection Advisory committee that was the starting point for that startling decision of the Council that will end its tem at the end of the month.

There are Advisory Committees that do superb work – better than staff people at city hall. And there are Advisory Committees that are poorly chaired.

Who sits on the Advisory Committees?

The city runs advertisements asking for people to submit an application; they are reviewed, people are interviewed and the selections announced. The decisions of city hall staff who make the recommendations then go to Council where they are approved. There have been occasions when Council decide not to approve a particular person – that kind of a decision gets made in a closed session.
Thus the final word on who sits on those Advisory Committees is made by Council – they want to keep the trouble makers out – or do they want to ensure they will get people who will support what Council wants to see done?

Do Council members put names forward?

There are people in this city that do not agree with some of the policies city Council puts forward and they would like to see some form or organized opposition in place.

While municipal governments do not follow provincial or federal party lines – there are people who would like to see something in the way of an organization that is not specific subject based.


Cut line

The Official waterfront advisory committee was shut down by the city – citizens thought it important enough to have a committee and formed something independent of city hall.

The Burlington Library is working with the city this year to put on an event that will let people learn more about the different advisory committees. The event will include committees that are not part of the civic administration.

The event: An Introduction to Boards and Committees, takes place on November 19th at the Central Library – starts at 7:00 pm. Oddly enough it doesn’t appear on the Library calendar and the city hasn’t said a word about it publicly. Disapointing.

The city has since advised that the event is n the city web site and that paid advertising is to appear soon.

While a large part of the city population lives south of the QEW – there are a lot of people north of that stretch of pavement. Why isn’t an event like this held in Alton in the recreational complex up there? This would give the people north of Dundas and those to the immediate south a chance to really participate.

Among the Boards and committees that will have representatives at the event are:

Burlington Accessibility Advisory Committee
Burlington Cycling Advisory Committee
Sustainable Development Advisory Committee
Heritage Burlington Advisory Committee
Senior’s Advisory Committee
Inclusivity Advisory Committee
Mundialization Committee
Committee of Adjustment
Downtown Parking Advisory Committee
Burlington Public Library Board
Burlington Museums Board
Doors Open Volunteer Organizing Committee
Canada Day Committee Organizing Committee
Christmas Parade Committee

Bfast Transit group logo

Bfast is an independent group that is well informed on transit matter. They delegate frequently.

We understand that BFast (Burlington For Accessible Sustainable Transit) will also have a table for people who want to be involved in transit issues.


Return to the Front page

Railways, Regiments and Restoration: A History of the Freeman Station exhibit at the Joseph Brant Museum - opens today.

Event 100By Staff

November 4, 2014



The Friends of Freeman Station are presenting their first museum exhibit in the community gallery of the Joseph Brant Museum.

Titled Railways, Regiments and Restoration: A History of the Freeman Station, the exhibit explores the 108-year history of the train station and the significance of the railways to Burlington using maps, photos and artifacts.

Freeman - cement being poured

Freeman station – the day cements was poured for the foundation.

Visitors will learn about the arrival of railways in Burlington in the mid-1800s, their vital importance to the region’s economy, particularly fruit and vegetable production, the role of the Freeman Station in The First World War, and current efforts to restore the building to its former glory.

Highlights include a scale model of the station as it would have looked in 1906, maps showing the station’s location in the village of Freeman, and Grand Trunk Railway, Canadian National Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway artifacts recently donated to the Friends and never before exhibited to the public.

The exhibit opens November 4, 2014. The museum is open Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and Sunday 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. General admission is $4.50.

The Friends of Freeman Station is a registered charity working to restore Burlington’s only surviving GTR station to its original appearance and open it as a museum. The building was moved to its current location in 2013 and this year the group has lowered it onto a new basement and begun work on the interior.

They are currently raising funds for a new roof and seeking volunteers. Their AGM will be held Wednesday, November 12th at 7 p.m. at Burlington City Hall.


Return to the Front page

The most upscale soup line in the province: AGB holds traditional event - starts November 13th.

Event 100By Staff

November 4, 2014



With the weather slipping into temperatures that call for a sweater and a scarf and a search for your gloves the idea of a hot bowl of soup sounds just about right. There is soup – and then there is soup and we all know the difference.

Individually hand crafted bowls done by artizans across the province.  Enjoy a special gourmet soup and then take the bowl home.

Individually hand crafted bowls done by artizans across the province. Enjoy a special gourmet soup and then take the bowl home.

The Art Gallery has this traditional celebration of both the culinary and ceramic arts. Starting November 13 and running to the 16th – they serve guests from beautiful handcrafted bowls donated by potters from across Ontario ready to be filled with delectable gourmet soups from some of the area’s finest restaurants.
AGB event will feature all of the best loved Soup Bowl elements – beautiful handcrafted bowls donated by potters from across Ontario ready to be filled with delectable gourmet soups from some of the area’s finest restaurants.

Guests choose their bowls, fill them with a gourmet soup to enjoy with the rest of their meal, and then take the bowls home after they are cleaned and packaged for them.

Soup Bowl is an important fundraiser which supports AGB programs and is quickly becoming a sold out event. Tickets are on sale now: $50 ($40 for AGB members) for all lunch and Friday evening sittings.

Tables of eight also can be reserved. Order tickets online or by telephone (905-632-7796, ext 326) or in person at AGB 1333 Lakeshore Road, Burlington.

BAC outdoors from the east sideShopping at the Arts Burlington Christmas Sale is an added bonus during the Soup Bowl. There is no admission charge to browse and buy at the Arts Burlington Christmas Sale, which features a wide variety of handcrafted items produced by the Guilds of Arts Burlington with Christmas in mind.

More than 2,000 visitors are drawn to the annual Christmas Sale of Fine Art and Craft presented by the seven Guilds of the AGB, and also to the seasonal beauty of the Gallery Shop, brimming with gift items carefully selected for quality and design.

It is open to everyone on November 13 from 11 am to 3 pm; November 14 from 11 am to 9 pm; and November 15 and 16 from 11 am to 4 pm.

The Art Gallery of Burlington is located at 1333 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, and is an accessible facility with lots of free parking over the course of the event. The 2014 Soup Bowl is sponsored by Utter Morris Insurance Brokers Limited, Wendy and Don Smith, Smith’s Funeral Homes, Brechin and Huffman, Barristers and Solicitors and J.M. Edwards Associates.


Return to the Front page

Tell five people and ask them to also tell five people: Town Hall meeting for flood victims.

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

November 3, 2014



There are believed to be between 500 and 250 homes in Burlington that were damaged by that August 4th flood that were either uninsured or under insured.

The citizens of Burlington have pulled together and raised $800,000 to date with the expectation that the amount will grow to $1 million by the end of the fund raising campaign.

Now – time to begin putting that money to good use and helping the people whose homes were damaged.

BCF Town Hall meeting


The Burlington Community Foundation (BCF) is holding a Town Hall meeting on Tuesday November 4th to explain the process that is being used to take care of those who need financial help.

To some the forms and the process might be confusing. The BCF will be explaining the process and will also have people on hand to work directly with those who need help,

The BCF believes there are at least more than 100 people who need and are entitled to help. It is vital that these people be in touch with the BCF and if at all possible that they attend the Tuesday meeting.

When you read this , please tell at least five other people and ask those five people to tell five other people.

If you were flooded and are either uninsured or under insured please attend the November 4th meeting.

There are people who can help – but they need to be able to talk to you.

The meeting is taking place at the Seniors’ Centre on New Street between 7:00 and 9:00 pm.

Return to the Front page