Barra Fion’s: Spanish inspired tapas restaurant, part of the Taste of Burlington

Michele Bogle
October 15, 2020
BURLINGTON, ONTARIO

Barra Fion’s Pre-Fixe Taste of Burlington menu boasts seven appetizers and five delicious-sounding entrees to choose from. With such a fantastic selection, it took us longer than anticipated to decide.

This Spanish inspired tapas restaurant was well spaced with plexi-glass shields in between the tables set in the middle of the room to allow for additional and safer seating. The best part was the non-contact facial recognition temperature scanning at the entrance. Our servers were patient, knowledgeable about the menu, and engaging. The restaurant was clean and guests wore masks while moving within the restaurant. As a reminder; using the Taste of Burlington Passport App also allows you to read menus digitally to avoid paper contact.

fioni crab cakes

Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes

For starters we tried the ‘Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes’. Two, only, may not sound like a generous portion but they were considerably large, hearty, flavourful and the aioli sauce was addictive, as well a perfect compliment to the dish.

Fioni shrimp

Blackened Shrimp and Farro Mediterranean Salad

We had also ordered the ‘Blackened Shrimp and Farro Mediterranean Salad.

This dish overloaded my senses. A culinary delight which was visually intriguing with all of its elements. Each ingredient with a specific purpose; a little crunch, a little spice and a little zing. I highly recommend this item on the menu.

fioni stew

Spanish Inspired Seafood Stew

Delightfully perplexed by my choice for the next course, we happily landed on ‘Spanish Inspired Seafood Stew’ as our entree. Don’t let the uninspired name fool you. This dish was a whole new eating adventure with its individual elements. The perfectly spiced blackened tilapia needed to be experienced first before dropping into the delicious seafood broth below; held up by a generous number of mussels and surrounded by a medley of stewed vegetables and herbs. Within the broth were found large gorgeous shrimp and an almost serrated roll of calamari. In my mind the garlic bread was provided to enjoy the delicious broth with. I was still echoing an “mmm, mmm, mmm” as I placed my empty bowl to the side.

dessert pumpkin

Pumpkin Spiced Mini Churros

For dessert, my daughter and I chose the ‘Pumpkin Spiced Mini Churros’ with caramel sauce. I think that the chef forgot that they were supposed to be minis. Shhh, it’ll be our little secret. Adding a touch of pumpkin spice to an already perfect dessert is ‘brilliant’.

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Barra Fion and would recommend that if you haven’t yet experienced their food, that the pre-fixe menu offered during the Taste of Burlington Dining Event is a perfect time to try different items on their menu at an excellent price.

Please note that this event runs only until October 25. You won’t want to miss it. Some restaurants are giving out additional offers. The more you use the Passport App to check-in when you dine at one of the participating restaurants, the more chance you have of winning the weekly gift-card giveaway and the grand prize of a $500 gift card to a restaurant of choice.

Barra Fion is located at;

1505 Guelph Line, Unit 10A
Burlington, ON L7P 3B6
905-319-3466
Open 7 days a week, 12-9pm

 

Michele BogleMichele Bogle is a Burlington resident who writes for the Gazette on community issues. Ms Bogle has taken part in the Food Network for the second year in a row to audition for the ‘Great Chocolate Showdown’ 2020 and 2021. She made it to the second stage of auditions for ‘Wall of Chefs’ 2019 and finished top 1% of auditions last year for ‘The Great Canadian Baking Show’.

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Thefts from unlocked vehicles in driveways south of the QEW have increased: Police saying Lock it or Lose it

Crime 100By Staff

October 15th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Residents in southern Burlington – south of the QEW, are reported to be getting a little sloppy about locking their cars at night.

The younger criminal set are finding they can steal small change and at times electronic equipment from unlocked cars.

HRPS crestHalton Police are reminding residents to Lock it or Lose it: there has been a recent increase in overnight thefts in the city, especially south of the QEW.

Over the past few weeks, a significant rise in theft incidents from vehicles has been reported to police. The reported incidents have occurred during the overnight hours and involve thieves entering unlocked vehicles to steal loose change and other valuables from inside.

The latest rash of incidents has occurred across the City, but thieves have been primarily targeting Burlington’s south end, south of the Q.E.W.

As police continue to investigate these crimes, we would like to remind and are urging Burlington residents to remain vigilant by keeping watch for suspicious vehicles and or persons in their neighbourhoods and to report it immediately to police.

Police are reminding the public of the following prevention tips:

Ensure your unattended vehicle(s) are kept locked/secure
• Never leave personal identification or valuables in your vehicle
• Park in well-lit and attended areas whenever possible
• Never leave spare keys in your vehicle
• If you have to leave valuables in your vehicle, lock them in your trunk. Don’t tempt thieves by leaving packages or purses in plain view or on the seat.
• Remove garage door openers, G.P.S. navigation, cell phone devices and power cords from your vehicle if possible or at the least, removed from view
• Consider installing C.C.T.V. / Surveillance cameras which can capture the crime and aid in suspect identification
• Ensure residences and garages are locked when absent from the home or turning in for the night
• REPORT SUSPICIOUS ACTIVITY TO POLICE IMMEDIATELY

Anyone with information related to these incidents is asked to contact the 3 District Criminal Investigations Bureau at 905 825-4747 ext. 2316. Tips can also be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers. “See something? Hear something? Know something? Contact Crime Stoppers” at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca.

For additional information about community concerns in Burlington, follow us on Twitter @HRPSBurl. Additionally, for the latest crime data, crime prevention tips, news releases and general information – visit the Service’s website www.haltonpolice.ca.

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Food bank misses the annual Gift of Giving Back food delivery

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 15th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The relationship between the Food Bank and the Gift of Giving Back people grew much stronger this year.

Cole, Thomas and Colby from the Burlington Eagles 07 team stopped by the Food Bank to drop off what they could gather from their family & friends during the holiday weekend. Last year at this time they were part of the huge annual Gift of Giving Back food drive where they actually filled three gyms with food.

Each year a number of teams make arrangements to stop by the Food Bank to take a quick tour and experience a little about what happens behind the scenes, as well as learn about a number of the struggles that some of their neighbours may be facing and needing the support of our services. We appreciate their visits and will miss them this year due to covid restrictions, nevertheless we appreciate any donations they are able to collect for families here in Burlington.

Weigh scales

When Covid19 was not ravaging the community Burlngton youth were collecting food as part of the annual Gift of Giving Back. Here volunteers are calculating what has been collected and sorting it into different bins for delivery.

The Burlington Eagles 07 team challenges other teams to do their best as well.

Scot Connor, a Food Bank volunteer, admits that he keeps blowing the horn of Gift of Giving Back – but adds that “these people are the absolute best of the best of all of our wonderful volunteers and charities. The people are great but its what they do to help teach our Burlington kids that makes them so special. it’s a real shame we don’t get to see a high school gym FULL of food again this year – and all the teams running around helping each other.

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Artists find a way to support the hospitality sector.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 14th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Burlington’s favourite fundraiser is back… social distance style!

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 from a local restaurant.

In an effort to support our local restaurants, we’re hosting this year’s Soup Bowl Fundraiser to go!

Bowl sales begin Thursday, October 15, 2020 and the event runs through the month of November. Stay tuned for exciting updates including restaurant announcements, supporting sponsors, bowl gallery preview, and more!

How it Works

Step One: Choose a Bowl
Browse our online gallery and select a handcrafted, one-of-a-kind, ceramic bowl. Bowls are $55 – AGB Members: watch your email for an exclusive discount code. Your purchase includes a voucher for a bowl of soup from one of our participating restaurants. Complete your purchase and keep your receipt handy – you’ll need it for the next step.

Step Two: Plan your Pick-Up
After your purchase, you’ll be notified of dates and times available for you to pick-up your bowl from the gallery. When you arrive, you’ll be given a Soup Bowl Swag Bag that includes your bowl & soup voucher.

Step Three: Enjoy your Soup
Contact your restaurant of choice during the month of November to book a time to redeem your soup voucher. Be sure to book your favourite restaurant as soon as possible; some limitations may apply.

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What is it that determines when a member of council should declare a conflict of interest?

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

October 14th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Every time the development at the top of Clearview Street in Aldershot comes up Ward 1 Councillor Kelvin Galbraith declares a conflict of interest.

His home is within the 120m distance from the development and he is seen as having a conflict.

Galbraith doesn’t have any problem with having to take this decision – he sees it as the right and proper thing to do.

Clearview from the south

The Clearview development runs the length of the space between Clearview and St. Matthew.

The Clearview development is contentious and has gone through a number of changes. Galbraith takes no part in the debate and does not vote on the matter.

KG house to street end

Kelvin Galbraith’s home is to the right of the tree trunk, one lot to the west, The Clearview development is at the top of the street where the think grey fence is located.

Galbraith knew that when he was elected he would have conflicts. He chose to do the smart thing and meet with the City Solicitor before he was actually sworn, in we understand, to ask what the rules were and what was required of him as a Councillor.

Galbraith has property interests along Plains Road as well and will declare a conflict of interest should that property become part of a development issue.

Galbraith slight smileWhat we are seeing is a sterling example of how a Councillor should behave, which was certainly not the case with at least one member of the 2014-18 council.

During the September 30th Standing Committee meeting Mayor Marianne Meed Ward and Ward 2 Councillor Lisa Kearns put forward nine amendments to the Official Plan that was being debated.

One of the amendments related to the Lions Club property that is bound by New Street, Maria, Martha and Elizabeth.

Lions Park

The Lions Park. The Mayor lives kitty corner from Maria Martha intersection centre top of the illustration,

The Lions Club began buying up pieces of property in the 1920’s. The structure that is currently the Club House for the Lions and home to ROCK – Reach Out Centre for Kids also has space in the building which is due to have a second floor added.

While the land is owned by the Lions Club it operates as a city park and is maintained by the city.

The city also has a right of first refusal should the Lions Club choose to sell the northern portion of the property.

An interesting side note – the building on the southern part of the site was once the barn for the transit cars used by the Radial Railway that used to run along what is now Centennial Trail.

View MMW to park

The Mayors home is approximately where the truck is parked in the driveway. The North East edge of the park is seen on the right hand side

During the debate around how the property would be zoned the Lions delegated and said they would like to see the park zoning designation removed from the property. They felt that zoned as parkland lessened the value of the land should a time come when the Lions wanted to sell and the city chose not to be a buyer.

Living next to a park is usually a plus for a property owner.

The Mayor happens to be a property owner who lives kitty-corner to the park.

At no point during the debate did the Mayor declare a conflict of interest.

The Gazette sent a note to the City Clerk (Does the Mayor not have a conflict – she lives across the street?) asking if there was not a conflict.

The City Clerk sent back a note saying:

Please note that the our Members of Council are bound by the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. M.50. In accordance with the Act, it is the duty of the member to disclose an interest. Staff does not provide comment or advice on whether a member may have a potential conflict under the Act. Section 28 of the Procedure By-law outlines the process that must be taken if a member has an interest that they disclose.

We don’t know if the Mayor has a conflict.  Councillor Galbraith said he has a conflict and his house is as close to the Clearview development as the Mayor’s house is to the Lions park.

This is a question that the provincial Ombudsman can answer.

 

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Virtual pre-consultation for major Brant Street development.

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 14th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The virtual Pre-consultation for the Molinaro development proposed for the Brant and Ghent intersection will take place this evening between 7 and 9:00 pm

Molinaro Brant and Ghent

The development covers three of the four corners at Brant and Ghent.

Instructions for Zoom Webinar

Participate On-Line via Zoom:

https://zoom.us/j/96657726680

Webinar ID: 966 5772 6680

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A delay in getting that new version (the endorsed one) of the Official Plan to the Region - wonder why?

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

October 14th, 2020

Official-Plan-Binder_Image

Grow Bold went out of favour.

BURLINGTON, ON

 

A source in the city communications department told us that: “The logistical details of how we submit the OP to the Region are still to be confirmed.”

That document was passed at a Special Meeting of Council on October 6th.

Why the delay?

Perhaps a new design for the cover is in the works?

Related news story

Getting the plan to the Region

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Just what DID Heather say?

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

October 14th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Just what DID Heather say during both the September 30th Standing Committee and the October 7th Council meeting?

Heather, being Executive Director Heather MacDonald who is also the Chief Planner for the city, was asked on multiple occasions if she supported the amendments made to the Official Plan late in the process of revisions being made to the OP that have been ongoing for more than a year.

MMW Oct 6 anthem 2 look

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward, standing in the Council Chamber during the singing of the national anthem.

The amendment came out of the minds of the Mayor and ward 2 Councillor Lisa Kearns.

Each of the amendments was strenuously debated at the Standing Committee and done as a recorded vote at the Council meeting.

Specifics on those changes brought forward, and eventually passed at council, will be covered in a separate story – they are a little on the complex side.

Sharman at transit

Councillor Sharman – a very deliberate questioner

Councillor Sharman led the putting of the question to MacDonald on each item. “Do you support the amendment?”

MacDonald + Enns

Heather MacDonald, on the right with Alison Enns at a public meeting.

During the first two amendments MacDonald was a little hesitant – not with her answer but in the way she expressed it. By the third amendment she had her answers formed in her mind and said consistently:  “we gave council our best planning advice and are comfortable with what we did”.

She added later that she could not professionally support the amendments. While the consultant the city hired to advise, at a cost of $600,000 plus on a sole sourced contract, was not taking part in the meeting, Sharman asked if he was supportive and MacDonald said he was not.

MacDonald was put in a very awkward position. She and her staff had done a gargantuan job of ensuring that the recommendations put forward were solidly researched and based on defensible planning practices. The numerous studies done were there to support the decisions made.

Audit Kearns 5

Ward 2 Councillor Lisa Kearns.

Then the Mayor and Councillor Lisa Kearns, come forward with major changes – mostly to the east side of Brant Street.  There was nothing inherently wrong with the changes – why didn’t they come from the planners?

Councillor Sharman concluded that when (he made a point of not saying if, but when) the plan is appealed to the Local Planning Act Tribunal (LPAT) the city will have to hire new  planners because ours, Heather MacDonald, has already said she could not support the amendments.

Councillor Nisan took exception to the mention of hiring lawyers and added that this had already been covered; something that would have been done in one of the now infamous Closed Council Sessions.

This is high stakes stuff at a very professional level – it is the kind of thing one stakes their reputation on. One has to wonder if there was a meeting between MacDonald, city manager Tim Commisso and the Mayor at which MacDonald may have said that she could not support the amendments and would resign before they were passed by Council.

That would have put the fat in the fire.

The planners at every level did some fine work. The amendments took the bloom off the rose; they could have been discussed in detail before it got to the point where the Mayor was challenging the planners.

Meed Ward did say that she understood the position the planners had taken and added that the planners are in place to give council their best thinking.

She also said that Council has a moral and ethical responsibility to do what they believe is best for the city saying  “this council is not a rubber stamp”.

There is now a state of tension between Council and the planning department that should not exist.

Sharman folded

Councillor Sharman

Angelo B

Councilor Bentivegna

Galbraith slight smile

Councillor Galbraith

The recorded votes, with one exception, were 4-3: Councillors Sharman, Bentivegna and Galbraith voted against the Mayor’s amendments and the other three siding with the Mayor.

Council Sharman pointed at that there are at least 23 appeals before LPAT – arguing those appeals are going to be a boondoggle for the planning and legal professions.

Salt with Pepper is the musings, reflections and opinions of the publisher of the Burlington Gazette, an online newspaper that was formed in 2010 and is a member of the National Newsmedia Council.

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Traffic restrictions on John and James for the installation of a construction crane

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 13th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

John Street between James Street and Maria Street will be closed on Thursday, October 15 and Friday, October 16, 2020, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. for crane activity.

Gallery

The look of lower Brant when the construction is completed.

Local access will be maintained from Maria Street only and through traffic will be detoured around the block.

The Gallery, the name given to the  23 storey condominium tower going up across the street from city hall, has advanced the construction – they now need to begin building up as well as down.

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Performing Arts Centre turns the stage lights on - very small audiences until province eases up on how many people can be in a theatre

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 13th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

When the lock down was put in place Tammy Fox knew she had a problem – she just didn’t know how big a problem it was going to be.

Today – she knows.

Tammy Fay smile

Tammy Fox, Executive Director Burlington Performing Arts Centre

Tammy is the Executive Director of the Performing Arts Centre.

The two theatres in the building – one, the Main Theatre, holds 720 people; the other, the Community Studio Theatre, holds 165 people – have been empty for months.

The building needed some attention during the lock-down – while minimal, the costs were nevertheless real.

A very interesting production has been announced that will give young people who have a deep interest in theatre a chance to get some solid experience and mentoring.

Rebuilding the audience is going to take time. The immediate future is iffy at best. The province has limited the number of people who can attend events. “I can’t put much more than 50 people in the Main theatre – close to impossible to pull in the revenue needed to support the operations” said Fox.

“COVID social distancing cuts into what we can earn from the bar.”

On the upside, the Performing Arts Centre has a solid core of patrons who have stayed with us.

Our volunteers have been great – we had them in for a run-through on what it means to manage and direct people when they are entering the theatre and explaining the seating arrangements. We held three separate sessions – 90% of the volunteers have returned to usher people.

During the balance of October there will be:

Gord Downie

A fund raising concert that sold out – broadcast as a live stream of the performance featuring Tom Wilson

LEGACY – A Tribute to Gord Downie featuring Tom Wilson is sold out.

The Livestream of the fundraising concert and special evening to celebrate the man, the music and his enduring legacy take place on October 15th and 16th.

BENEATH SPRINGHILL: The Maurice Ruddick Story takes place on October 17th and 18th – at 1:00 pm on both days.
This is the dramatic true tale of seven miners trapped beneath a small mining town and the racial tension that surfaced as a result.

Elise LeGrow

Elise LeGrow; an impressive chanteuse

Elise LeGrow will perform on Sun Oct 25, 2020 at 4pm and at 7pm in the Community Studio.
Her voice and storytelling abilities are second to none. She has performed at the Performing Art Centre before to solid audiences.

Then there is the ALTdot Comedy Lounge on Friday Oct 30, 2020 at 7pm and again at 9pm

Featuring Sean Cullen, Jackie Pirico with host Ali Hassan! For 24 years, The ALTdot Comedy Lounge has been one of Toronto’s premiere comedy shows.

Nancy Brewer BPAC chair

Nancy Brewer, Chair Burlington Performing Arts Centre

The Performing Arts Centre has a new Chair, Nancy Brewer, a Chartered Professional Accountant in Burlington. Nancy is actively involved in community service having served as Chair of Joseph Brant Hospital and the Halton Learning Foundation.
Fox has put the finishing touches on the budget for next year – it is going to be painful.

Much depends on how long the current audience limitations are in place – assuming that we don’t slide back into a second lock down – and the arrival of a vaccine that proves to halt the spread of the virus.

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Council does not appear to be interested in taking a long term view of the application for new quarrying licenses in the Escarpment

City Council was given a thorough report on what was involved in the Nelson Aggregate application for new licenses; one to quarry on land to the west of the current site and another to quarry on land to the south.

Quarry map

The shaded area are where Nelson Aggregates want to expand.

The information Council was given was more in the way of background – nothing was going to happen for a couple of years – other than the preparing and issung of a number of technical studies.

This part of the process was expected to cover several years.

What became clear during the meeting was that while the quarries were in Burlington proper, the city was certainly not going to have the last word – they would be lucky to have much to say at all.

The Regional government was going to spearhead the messaging while the JART – Joint Application Review Tribunal would do all the initial review of the document – which comprised of thousands of pages of technical data.

All that data and the summary of them would get presented to Burlington, the Region of Halton, the Niagara Escarpment Commission and the provincial Ministry that oversees the operation of mineral extraction operations, they would all be expected to weigh in on what it would all mean to the city.

The NEC and the Ministry are what count.

The document that held the most information for everyone at Council was a Process Time Line that sets out who is going to do what and when.

Quarry time line

What was entirely overlooked at the Burlington Council meeting was the long term Nelson Aggregate intention to turn the quarried out properties to the city who could then turn them into a huge public park.

This council did not seem to want to take a long term look – the focus seemed to be the impact the application might have on the 2022 municipal election.

The Escarpment is seen as sacrosanct – no housing developments except for maybe something very very small in the three settlement communities of Lowville, Kilbride and Mt Nemo.

Golf courses are OK with the residents – the accepted community norm is that those people who can afford five and ten acre properties on which they can build relatively large homes are more than welcome.  Gated driveway are acceptable architectural features.  If you don’t fit into that demographic – then the Escarpment just isn’t for you.

16 Rendering of bowl Golf club or main quarry

The existing quarry on the north side of Side Road # 2 is close to being mined out. Rehabilitation is currently already underway. When completed there will be a swimming area, paths and park area with acres of land to roam around on.

That Burlington is going to grow immensely is a given – mostly housed in apartments or condominiums with not much in the way of parkland.

We are seeing exceptionally large crowds along the Beachway where parking becomes an expensive issue when you see the amount on the parking ticket.

The several Conservation areas are now regulating who can go into their parks and how long they can stay.

While we are not out of public park space we are now rationing the space we have and charging fees for entrance.

Beach - swimming

The property on the south side of Side Road # 2 would be turned into a lake with a large shallow area that will be very safe for young children. The Jefferson Salamander habitat will be well to the east of this lake.

Another large park in the Escarpment area makes sense and certainly deserves consideration.

Not by this Council and certainly not during that period of time when re-election is the focus.

The last time Nelson Aggregates made an application for new licensees they were turned down because the Jefferson Salamander habitat was threatened.  Nelson Aggregates has made sure that issue is covered in this latest application.

To the surprise of some there is a citizen organization with a reported 400 members supporting the long term development of turning the quarries into public park space.

There is also a well organized citizens group opposed to the quarry expansion,

Council has to determine what they want to do. Will they choose to say they will protect the Escarpment.  From what?  Newcomers having a place to play?

Part 1 of a three part series on the Nelson Aggregate issue.

A very large development that is a short drive from the Escarpment – no park land for those people.

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Performing Arts Centre offering unique opportunity for local youth to participate in a professional theatre production

artsorange 100x100By Staff

October 13th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Performing Arts Centre has created a unique opportunity for local youth to participate in a professional theatre production of ‘Into the Woods: In Concert’ this November and December!

Into the woods - graphic

The production was the Dora Mavor Moore Award winner for Best Production of a Musical in 2010.

As part of the Burlington Performing Arts Centre’s upcoming presentation of Into the Woods: In Concert, there will be  a three-week Youth Mentorship Program.

Up to 22 local youth will become a part of the ensemble, participating on stage or behind the scenes, experiencing the rehearsal process with the professional cast, and performing in a one-of-a-kind production of a Broadway classic, produced by one of Canada’s leading independent professional theatre companies.

Applications must be sent in no later than Friday October 23rd.

Physical distancing and all proper COVID-19 safety measures will be followed during the program, and masks will be required for all participants.

“Participating in this kind of production is a great opportunity for young performers, designers and fans of theatre, in general,” said Burlington Performing Arts Centre Executive Director Tammy Fox.

The program: Into the Woods: In Concert was created by the Talk is Free Theatre company based in Barrie Ontario. The opportunity to take part in this production is every theatre kid’s dream, and a unique opportunity to learn from industry professionals, said Fox.”

Applicants must be between the ages of 12 and 20, must commit to approximately 20 hours of rehearsal at The Burlington Performing Arts Centre, between November 16 and December 6, and must be open to the creative process and respectful to their environment.

An introductory workshop will be provided by Leslie Gray of Burlington’s own Koogle Theatre.

Participants can participate in acting, singing, design, directing, stage management and more, based on their interests.

Those seeking a performance role will get to act in this iconic musical alongside some of Canada’s leading musical theatre actors, whose productions credits span from Mirvish Productions, Shaw Festival and Stratford Festival.

Into the Woods performer

Into the Woods In Concert performer. Photo by Alex Medvick.

Every participant will also receive one-on-one mentorship from a member of the professional cast and/or creative team. These mentorship sessions consist of two 30-minute meetings which will be scheduled during the rehearsal and performance timeframe.

This unique opportunity to be part of the show costs $200, which includes two complimentary tickets to the production. Interested youth must apply by Friday, October 23 on the BPAC website. (https://burlingtonpac.ca/youth-mentorship-program/)

About Into the Woods: In Concert
Talk is Free Theatre presents Into the Woods: In Concert at the BPAC’s Main Theatre for 10 shows from November 27 to December 6.

Into the Woods is a musical journey that intertwines the several beloved Brothers Grimm characters and explores the consequences of their individual’ wishes and wants. Characters include Little Red Riding Hood, Jack (and the Beanstalk), Rapunzel, and Cinderella to name a few. At the centre of the story is a childless baker and his wife who will do anything to have a family, but they encounter a powerful witch who has placed a curse on them. Throughout this magical journey, characters from different fables encounter each other as they fight for what they believe is their happily ever after. The original Broadway production earned three Tony Awards in 1988.

BPAC people in pic

The stage lights are back on – the Performing Arts Centre is once again operational.

About Talk is Free Theatre
Talk is Free Theatre was founded in 2003 in Barrie, ON by Artistic Producer Arkady Spivak and colleagues, and has since produced close to 100 works. TIFT’s recent production The Curious Voyage is an internationally recognized first-of-its- kind immersive experience that physically transported participants to London, England as part of an inescapable narrative. Their co-production of Sondheim’s Assassins with Birdland Theatre as a sold-out success, a Dora Mavor Moore Award winner for Best Production of a Musical in 2010 and has been named on the 10 Best Toronto Theatre Shows of the Decade by NOW.

Tickets can be purchased online or by telephone:
905-681-6000 | burlingtonpac.ca/into-the-woods
Tickets: Regular $49 / Members $44

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Beer Store closes Elizabeth Street Location: employee tested positive for COVID

News 100 redBy Staff

October 12th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

beer storeThe Beer Store announced today that its 396 Elizabeth Street location has closed while they complete a deep clean.

The Beer Store learned that an employee at the store tested positive for COVID-19. The Beer Store is working in consultation with Halton Public Health and has closed the location.

It will re-open on Tuesday, October 13.

All potentially affected employees will self-isolate and symptom monitor as a precautionary measure.

The Beer Store has implemented mandatory employee face coverings in all their stores, in addition to robust cleaning and public distancing protocols already in place.

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Community Development Halton moves to an open membership format: a much needed and welcome change.

News 100 yellowBy Pepper Parr

October 12th, 2020,

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Community Development Halton (CDH) is not an organization that is immediately recognized when the letters CDH are mentioned.

It is one of a number of non-governmental organizations in place to serve the community.

It relies on public money to exist – most of the funding comes from the Region of Halton and the United Way.

CDH logoLike all the other incorporated not for profit organizations – it holds an annual meeting.

CDH did something startling at its Annual General Meeting earlier this month.

When the province made changes to the Not-For-Profit Corporations Act, many organizations amended their  by-laws, reducing voters to board members only – CDH followed suit a few years ago. However, when the current board reflected on the impact to its transparency and inclusiveness, it voted to reverse the change.  What CDH has done is re-open the organization to membership – which is what elects the Board of Directors that sets policy and direction.

Jan + scarf

CDH president Jan Mowbray.

“They amended the rules related to membership.  There are now two forms of membership: Individual and Organization” explained CDH president Jan Mowbray.

“Organization” means any non-profit or charitable organization; grassroots group, or public or private entity, but does not include a political party or political organization.”

“A member must live or work in the Region; members must pay the membership fee.”

The membership fee structure for individuals has yet to be confirmed – however, the members of the Board pay an annual fee of $100.

“Each individual member and a single representative of a member organization shall be entitled to cast one vote on each question at any Annual General Meeting or Special Meeting, provided that the individual or organization was a member in good standing on December 31 of the prior year and remained so for the period up to and including the date of the Annual General Meeting.”

The AGM is always in September – thus preventing any last minute attempt to add new members and change the direction of the organization.

“Ten percent of the membership can petition the President to call a meeting of the Board.”

“A quorum at an Annual General Meeting shall be more than 10% of CDH members in good standing.”

“A motion or resolution shall be carried if it is approved at an Annual General Meeting by more than 50% of those voting.”

There are far too many organizations in place to serve the city that use the Directors in place as their membership – they keep re-electing themselves or determine who they want to join the Board.  They become the “old boys club”.

This is a very healthy change, hopefully one that will be taken up by other Not-for-Profit organizations with the Sound of Music (SoM) being an organization that needs a change.  There was a time when there were more than 100 SoM members.

In the past far too many NGO’s suspended membership and changed their constitutions to having the members of the Board being the only members who could re-elect themselves at will.

The logic behind changing the rules was that “the board was unanimous in its desire to be completely inclusive and transparent.  When only  the board could vote on an issue, it left our stakeholders with no say at all in an organization that represents all of Halton”, said Jan Mowbray, President of the CDH Board of Directors.

Nixon Image

Executive Director Mike Nixon

CDH also has a new Executive Director – Mike Nixon –  who was in complete support of the change.  A number of Staff changes were made as well.  COVID issues meant putting some staff on furlough for a period of time.

The organization has now completed the needed structural changes.

Edwardh-Joey

Dr. Joey Edwardh

Dr. Joey Edwardh, who retired last October after more than twenty years at the helm during which time some significant changes were made in the way social issues were deliberated upon at a public level.

 

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On Being Thankful

Fall colours Oct 20The things for which we are thankful.

This is a day to pause and think about what we are thankful for during these stressful times.

These trees caught our eye – we found it a good place to start thinking about all there is to be thankful for.

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West Plains Bistro: part of the Taste of Burlington event - running until the 25th

By Michele Bogle
October 11, 2020
BURLINGTON, ONTARIO

West Plains Bistro is located in Aldershot. It has a warm comfy feel, almost cozy at the west end of Burlington: this little European-styled bistro is conveniently accessed off busy Plains Road. There was plenty of outdoor seating but a little noisy, so we chose to eat inside. Tripadvisor.ca rated it at #9 out of more than 300 Burlington restaurants.

West Plains Bistro

West Plains Bistro – rated #9 in Burlington on Tripadviser

What I observed upon entering: at the door was the restaurant’s ‘Food & Safety Inspection Sheet’ prominently placed for patrons to read before entering. When entering, we were greeted by mask-covered staff. There were only booths as a choice for seating. The additional tables were eliminated for appropriate spacing. Before being seated the server informed us that both doors at either end were open for improved air circulation. The tables were not pre-set. The restaurant looked clean.

‘Soup of the Day’ was red pepper with goat cheese and bacon. However this combination sounds, I can assure you that the flavours make you stop and redirect your conversation. This was a taste experience that made this cook want to attempt to recreate this soup at home. I’d return just for the soup.

Taste WPB greens on top

Smoked Salmon Crepe

Next, we chose the ‘Smoked Salmon Crepe’ as our entree. At first glance you might think that you’ve been transported into an expensive New York restaurant featured in a food magazine. The plating was beautiful and the quantity of food sitting on the plate, minimalistic. Inside this tidy package I found a fully-loaded crepe of smoked salmon, red onion and goat cheese. The dill sauce was a perfect complement to the dish.

Taste WPB pie

Pumpkin Pecan Torte

Appetite now completely satisfied, it was time for dessert. Dessert was a choice from eight delectable creations. A list of which can be found on their website https://westplainsbistro.square.site/gallery-3. It was very difficult to choose. We went with the Pumpkin Pecan Torte, which in my opinion was more of a tart, than torte, and the Peach and Apple Crumble. The crumble was mushy and there was little evidence of peach present in my dessert. I wouldn’t recommend this particular item on the menu. As a baker, my specific area of strength is in flavour profiles. After tasting the Pumpkin Pecan Torte, I would give the balance of spices within this torte, three thumbs up.

The overall dining experience was good. At $20 per person during the Taste of Burlington Pre-Fixe Dining Event, I received more than my money’s worth of delicious food.

Make sure to sign up for your Taste of Burlington Passport App found in the link below, if you haven’t already; to make ordering and your check-in process safer and easier.

https://tasteofburlington.ca/prix-fixe-program/

As a reminder this event runs only from October 5-25. Reservation required at most locations. Don’t miss out on a great opportunity to try new restaurants and or to visit some of your favourites while supporting hospitality in Burlington, Ontario.

West Plains Bistro
133 Plains Road, East
Burlington, ON L7T 2C4
905-333-9449
info@westplainsbistro.com
https://www.westplainsbistro.com

Remember, every time you participate in this event using the Taste of Burlington Passport, you increase your chances of winning the weekly gift card giveaway, or the $500 gift card to a participating restaurant of choice.

Michele BogleMichele Bogle is a Burlington resident who writes for the Gazette on community issues. Ms Bogle has taken part in the Food Network for the second year in a row to audition for the ‘Great Chocolate Showdown’ 2020 and 2021. She made it to the second stage of auditions for ‘Wall of Chefs’ 2019 and finished top 1% of auditions last year for ‘The Great Canadian Baking Show’.

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Citizen suggests a pause on adding people to Advisory Committees

opinionred 100x100By Lawson Hunter

October 10th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

As Council knows, public engagement is near and dear to my heart. I’ve spoken about community education, a wider approach to give citizens the opportunity to comment on policies and plans, and I’ve proposed various methods of having community voices heard – in particular – citizens’ assemblies.

I respectfully ask that Councillors search out information on how Citizens’ Assemblies work and how they are successfully being used around the world.

Fortunately, I have the time to attend Standing Committee and Council meetings being held during the day. Many in our community cannot afford to take time off to participate.

I attended one of the Citizen Action Labs, have spoken to several ex-members of Citizen Advisory Committees, attended a few of those committee meetings as a silent observer, and read the various documents, staff reports, committee minutes and the recommendations from the Citizens Advisory Committee Review Team. As you know, I go in for the deep dive.

As public engagement goes, I look at what the City has done with regard to the Adopted Official Plan and the ‘Take a Closer Look Downtown’ initiative as the gold standard. Dozens of opportunities, countless interactions, volumes of documents to pour over, many, many Get Involved messages, even walking tours and town halls.

Compare that to the City’s outreach for the Advisory Committee Review. Three Action Labs, an online survey and a questionnaire at an outdoor market. All done over a year ago. Yes, there was a citizens Review Team that, I presume, worked diligently to interpret the responses heard. But there was no opportunity to respond to the document that they produced.

Basically, a year has passed and silence. If nothing screams Public Engagement – in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS – it’s the Advisory Committee structure. Something that the public has been complaining about for over 20 years.

Then, on Sept. 17th up pops a staff report with a phased in approach and a request from the Corporate Services CSSRAC committee to start recruiting Advisory Committee members.

Which to my mind, means that we’ve gone back to the status quo while the Clerk’s office works out the details.

So here’s my request. Hit the pause button for a few more months. We’ve all been distracted by COVID. Parents are struggling how to send their kids to school and keep their families safe. Operations at City Hall has morphed into a giant Zoom call. Council is about to be swallowed up with the City’s 2021 Budget. Business owners are fighting to keep their doors open. And more and more people have lost their jobs, and are lining up at Food Banks and COVID testing sites.

Is this the time to start recruiting for Advisory Committees? We’ve gone seven months without them. What harm would another few months do?

Hit the pause button and give this staff report, and some details, to those people who spent their time attending the Action Labs, who bothered to fill out the surveys, who sit or have sat on previous Advisory committees, the Engagement Charter and Shape Burlington.

Give us a chance to review what’s being proposed. One last chance to make a suggestion or comment. A bit more time to decide whether or not we want to sign up for a committee, or decide to let others take over.

That would be Public Engagement, the kind that we deserve here in Burlington.

 

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Thanksgiving Day - what's open - what isn't open.

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 10th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

What’s open; what’s not open – Thanksgiving Holiday.
Animal Services
The Animal Shelter at 2424 Industrial St. remains closed to the public due to COVID-19.

To report an animal control-related emergency, call 905-335-3030 or visit www.burlington.ca/animal.

Burlington Transit Burlington Transit will operate a holiday schedule on Oct. 12. The downtown Transit Terminal, Specialized Dispatch and the administration office will also be closed on this day.

Schedules and specialized booking are available at burlingtontransit.ca. For real-time schedule information visit Google/Apple Maps or triplinx.ca.

City Hall Closed on Monday, Oct. 12.
The Service Burlington counter will re-open Oct. 13 and is available for the following in-person payments from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday to Friday:

– Parking permits and tickets
– Property taxes
– Freedom of Information requests
– Garbage tags
– Dog licenses
– Property information requests
– Recreation services

Service Burlington continues to offer marriage licenses and commissioning services by appointment. Please call Service Burlington at 905-335-7777 to schedule.

Cash payments are currently not accepted. Many service payments are also available online at burlington.ca/onlineservices.

Anyone entering City Hall must wear a mask or face covering unless exempted from by the Mandatory Mask Bylaw.

Residents are asked to bring and wear their own masks.

Building and Planning
Service counters for building and planning are currently closed and staff continue to process applications electronically.

For more information about building permits and business licences, visit burlington.ca/building.

For information about development applications, visit burlington.ca/developmentinfo

Halton Court Services – Provincial Offences Office Closed on Monday, Oct. 12.

Administration Counter Services, at 4085 Palladium Way, will re-open on Oct. 13 and are available from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday to Friday.

Telephone payments are available at 905-637-1274, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. Many online services are also available, please visit Halton Court or email burlingtoncourt@burlington.ca

Free parking is available downtown, on the street, in municipal lots and in the parking garage on weekends and holidays.

NOTE: The Waterfront parking lots (east and west) do not provide free parking on statutory holidays.
Parking exemptions are currently not required for overnight parking on City streets between 1 and 6 a.m., due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. burlington.ca/parking

Recreation Programs and Facilities Arenas will be closed on Oct. 12 and re-open on Oct. 13.

Angela Coughlan Pool will be open on Oct. 12. Pre-registration is required. For scheduled programming, visit burlington.ca/fall

Roads, Parks and Forestry Administrative office closed on Monday, Oct. 12.

Essential and reduced parks maintenance services will be provided.
rlingotn.ca

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Fire fighters and anonymous young men collect for the Food Bank

News 100 yellowBy Staff

October 10th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

The Burlington Dads drove to the Food Bank earlier this week  at the end of their Food Drive in Kilbride with 167 pounds of donated food.

Food bank fire truck

Heritage Firetruck used as a back drop for food collected in the Kilbride community by the volunteer fire fighters.

The Dads partnered up with the Kilbride Volunteer Firefighters Association to do a non-perishable food collection and stopped by numerous friendly local businesses that offered their offices as drop-off points along the way. One of the Dads (Jordan Bradburn) organized the event and drove an old 1937 Ford fire truck to lead the way, proudly flying the DADs flag.

Each year at this time the Burlington Dads host their annual Ride to Provide spin marathon as their own fundraiser. In lieu of the pandemic it was cancelled, however last year’s host’s – Cedar Springs Health Racquet & Sports Club squash members helped out by collecting 40 donated turkeys from their members for us to distribute to families this weekend!

Food bank - three young men

Three unnamed young men dropped off a bin of food they had collected.

Being Squash Members, a few of them included squash as well.

One last thing –the photo is of three young men who just showed up last night and dropped off a full bin of food as a donation – anonymously! Two hockey players and a soccer player (that’s all we know). Amazing!

Are there some proud parents who want to identify these young men?

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L3Harris applied systems manager recognized at the national Women of Color (WOC) STEM Virtual Conference

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 9th, 2020

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Annie Wang: a manager in applied systems at L3Harris’ Burlington operation.

Annie Wang

Annie Wang

She is among 40 women nationwide being honored across 15 categories at the conference this year. Wang is a manager in applied systems at L3Harris’ Burlington operation. In addition to Wang, five other L3Harris employees are being recognized this year at the national Women of Color (WOC) STEM Virtual Conference October 8-10.

“I’m truly honored about receiving this award. I’m very appreciative of the recognition, and the initiatives and effort of the organization in promoting and maintaining diversity in the workplace,” said Wang, who will receive the Technology All Star award.

The WOC STEM Conference has been promoting the achievements of women across the STEM fields for 25 years. At the conference, award winners and other attendees have an opportunity to discuss key issues in the scientific and technical workforce, share best practices and participate in professional development, networking and recruiting. In addition, conference attendees can participate in virtual panels which will be comprised of leaders from Fortune 500 companies, government agencies and universities.

About L3Harris Technologies
L3Harris Technologies is an agile global aerospace and defense technology innovator, delivering end-to-end solutions that meet customers’ mission-critical needs. The company provides advanced defense and commercial technologies across air, land, sea, space and cyber domains. L3Harris has approximately $18 billion in annual revenue and 48,000 employees, with customers in more than 100 countries.

Their new location in Waterdown is under construction.

They have been a leading technology organization in Burlington for some time.

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