Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sunday November 16, 2014

Ladies and Gentlemen

The snow is here – and we love it, right  ;-)

A number of major developments on our area tourism front you should know about. Some three years ago the four North Simcoe municipalities identified tourism as a major economic pillar and decided to devote time and energy to building our tourism capabilities.  A consulting firm was brought in to develop a tourism plan. The plan was turned over to the new Tourism Action Plan Committee (TAP). That Committee is made up of our major area tourism services and attractions and all four municipalities.

Their first task was to choose a “brand” for our area. Not a simple task.  For example, when you say “Muskoka” most people think of lakes; woods; a Muskoka chair on a dock; and getting away from it all. When you say “Mildand/Penentanguishene/Tiny/Tay” – not much comes to mind. So we need a brand and that starts with selection of a brand name. Ladies and gentlemen that name is:  “The Heart of Georgian Bay”..” Au Coeur de la Baie Georgian” 

Initial work to build our brand has started with the launch of our area tourism website  More website work to come. Additionally, four TAP members (Martyrs’ Shrine/Wye Marsh/Huronia Museum/Keewatin) are developing a “Passport” marketing initiative for the tour and vacation markets, and will use a telemarketing campaign to attract new visitors to our area. And to cap off our excellent tourism week, the Province on Ontario has just announced that both St. Marie Among the Hurons and the SS Keewatin are now recognized as "Ontario Signature Experiences"

Our tourism initiative is on a roll.


Monday November 17th – your chance to enjoy good food at Boston Pizza and help out the Frank Graham 2015 Cycle Liberation Tour. Boston Pizza has graciously agreed to donate 10% of all food sales between 5:00 and 8:00 pm towards this special veteran’s event.  Then at 5:30 pm it’s the Big Brothers and Sisters AGM at NSSRC. 

A very busy evening on Tuesday November 18th.  At 6:15 pm the Salvation Army will launch its Christmas kettle campaign. The kick-off is at the Canadian Tire store on Hwy 93.  At 6:30 pm you are invited to join the Guesthouse for its AGM at St. Paul’s church. And at 7:30 pm at MCC, A Day in the Life features the internationally renowned Canadian tenor, Mr. Ben Heppner. Ben Heppner has been hailed as the finest dramatic tenor of our era.   He has excited audiences in the great opera halls of the world and with many of the leading orchestras.

Wednesday the 19th the four mayors will meet to start developing a plan to support our hospital and healthcare services.  The mayors are coming together in response to growing concerns about the potential loss of healthcare services and shortfalls in hospital funding. Left unaddressed, these challenges could negatively impact our future. The solution includes effective civic engagement, starting with the mayors and involving all citizens.  I expect the mayors to meet regularly over the next few years and involve the public fully in the process.

Thursday November 20th is another busy day. At 9:00 am the County will bring in the newly elected Councilors for their first training session. A lot to learn.  At 9:30 am the County is hosting a half day workshop entitled “Housing Solutions for Simcoe County” at the Simcoe County Museum in Midhurst.

That evening at 7:00 pm the YMCA Peace Medallion will be awarded to We are the Villagers charity for the excellent work that they do in our community with underprivileged children. The award will be accepted by Julianna Matayas and Geoff Crompton, the driving forces behind the charity. That’s at the YMCA Employment Centre at 334 King St. Please bring a non-perishable food item

On Friday November the 21st you may wish to attend the regular Waterfront Project Committee meeting at 11:00 am at Town Hall.  Then for your evening entertainment at 7:00 pm John Kokkinos opens his Digital Labyrinth exhibit in the Quest Gallery at the MCC. And at 8:00 pm it’s the Big Wigs stage show extraordinaire, also at the MCC.



-       9:00 am you will want to visit the fall and winter Farmers Market at NSSRC

-       10:00 am artists takeover the Huronia Museum until 4 pm with all sorts of artwork and crafts

-       Also at 10:00 am the Friends of the Midland Public Library will be marking the 4th anniversary of the Book Cellar, the library’s used bookstore. Buy a bag of books for $5. The sale runs until 2 pm with funds raised going to support your library

-       7:00 pm the Martels Rock and Roll show at NSSRC

-       8:00 pm its Big Wigs at the MCC


-       From 10:00 am to 4:00 pm is the Lorraine Jordan Community Carnival at the old Zellers location at the Mountainview mall.  Games, blow up castles, food, cotton candy and much more. Admission is free with a non-perishable food item or the donation of a new or nearly new item for YMCA Gifts to Give. All proceeds to local charities.

Gord McKay

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