Sunday, May 27, 2018

Sunday May 27, 2018

Ladies and Gentlemen

Our lovely summer weather continues and about 60 new home purchasers were at the Seasons on Little Lake sod turning event on Saturday to appreciate it. This is a major residential project that will add over 1,000 homes and some 2,000 to 3,000 new residents. They expect to get the first phase ground work done this summer and possibly start foundation work on the homes in the fall.  Occupancy is slated for spring 2019.

The Week Ahead

Monday the 28th and right to business with a closed meeting at Town Hall at 6:30 pm. We will be discussing a personal matter (staffing).   At 7:00 pm it’s the May Council meeting including:

-       Public meeting (you may speak) on two topics:

o    Removal of the holding symbol at 960 Sumac Lane

o    Midland’s 2018 water and wastewater rates

-       Three deputations

o    Georgian Bay Fisheries presentation by Mary Muter

o    2018 Terry Fox Run organization with Don Chapman

o    Request to rename the seniors room at NSSRC

-       2018 tax rate by-law should be passed. We are looking at an all in average tax reduction of 1.2%. (Yes, that was reduction)

On Tuesday the 29th at 11:00 am the OPP Central Region will be holding its Awards Ceremony at the Quality Inn. Then at noon the Askennonia Senior Center, along with Huronia Museum and students from Georgian Bay District Secondary School will be showcasing their project  "A Peek at the Past".  It's an oral history project and students have interviewed three North Simcoe residents.  The interviews have been recorded and edited by local videographer, Eamonn O'Connell. Askennonia is hosting a free, open-to-all luncheon at noon. That’s at the NSSRC.

Wednesday sees an Audit Committee meeting for the County at Midhurst. You can attend that too.

Thursday the 31st features a very timely discussion on Lyme Diseases at the Weybridge community centre, 8340 Hwy 93. Starting at 7:00 pm the evet features expert speakers Jackie Davenport, SMDHU; Dr. Sheila Driver; and veterinarian Larry Herr. No admission charge.

Friday June 1.  One week until the provincial election.  Advance polls are open so vote early and avoid the lineup. Find you closest advance poll at

Week - End

Saturday June 2

-       9;00 am - Kids Fishing Derby and Bike Rodeo at the Town dock

-       Air show at Base Borden. You want to be there before noon

-       12:00 pm - Lakeside Massage opens at their new location 238 Midland Ave

-       1:45 pm the Midland Lions 724 Squadron Air Cadets have their annual ceremony at the NSSRC

-       9:15 pm - Downtown movie night The Jungle Book, 509 Bay Street, Midland

Sunday June 3

-       Air show at Base Borden. You want to be there before noon

Council Issues Update

Downtown Safety

The Community Safety Task Force had its first working meeting.  The work has been divided into two phases: Problem Statement – what are the problems we are seeing in the downtown and what are the root causes; Solution – development of a Midland specific safety model and techniques

The CSTF has set itself an aggressive agenda and intends on meeting its August 31st target.

Midland Bay Landing

With the formation paperwork now approved by Council, the search is one for quality directors to help develop our 40 acre waterfront gem.  The Town is now advertising for Board of Director positions for the new Midland Bay Landing Development Corporation. If you or someone you know may be interested please go to the Town web page


The County of Simcoe is introducing a new curbside collection program for textiles to help divert these materials out of landfills. Simcoe County residents will receive one textile collection this June, with our area’s pick-up scheduled for June 18-22 (Zone 2). Similar to Leaf and Yard Waste collection, pick-up does not necessarily coincide with your regular collection day. Items should be placed at the curb by 7 a.m. on the Monday of your collection week. For more information visit

**  Reminder for Today – Sunday May 27.  The Mayors Mac and Cheese dinner takes place from 4:00 to 7:00 pm at Phil’s Pub and Eatery in Midland.  All proceeds to We Are the Villagers children’s charity.  Hope to see you there.  **

Gord McKay

The Year for Forging Our Future - 2018


Sunday, May 20, 2018

Sunday May 20, 2018

Ladies and Gentlemen

No spring this year – it seems like we are headed right into summer. Time for BBQ, festivals and enjoying the good life in Midland.

The Week Ahead

Monday 21 – Victoria Day - holiday – what more needs be said. 

On Tuesday the 22nd at 9:00 am it’s County Council. Council will receive the Transportation Tomorrow Survey results, that you may recall participating in last year.  A few survey facts: 95% of all trips made by residents in Simcoe County involved a car/light truck.  In Midland about 60% of our trips are within Midland, with our next most popular destination being Penetanguishene. Staying local – shopping local.

At 2:00 pm a very special signing ceremony will take place at Neezhoday Park on King Street.  The Town of Midland and the Beausoleil First Nation will be entering into a Protocol Agreement – a formalization of how we will cooperate in economic development, land use planning and generally the sharing of a common geography.  The Town of Midland is established on the Traditional and Treaty Territory of the Beausoleil First Nation. 14% of Midland residents identify as having an aboriginal identity.  This formal recognition is long overdue. Please do come and witness this historical event.

At 3:00pm the North Simcoe Housing Working Group meets at Town Hall to further their work on the affordable housing file.

Wednesday the 23rd starts with the Community Safety Task Force at 10:00 am at Town Hall.  The meeting will decide the form of engagement on the topic of safety for our Midland community. At noon Rotary celebrates Random Acts of Kindness Day with a free hot dog lunch at the Town Dock.  I understand that free coffee is also available at the Town Hall, and something about parking violations being overlooked…

At 1:00 pm the Governance Review Committee meets at Town Hall to consider the committees and procedures your elected officials will follow in the years to come. And at 5:00 pm at the MCC it gets political as our provincial election candidates square off in a debate. All are welcome to attend and learn more about who our next MPP will be.

Thursday sees the SS Keewatin open for its summer season in Port McNicoll.  At 1:00 pm the Cruise Ship Industry Group reconvenes at Town Hall to review the progress on our Town led project to grow cruising in the Great Lakes.

On Friday the 25th the Huronia Museum invites you to look at our history through the eyes of local residents.  The Four Jewels Oral History Project takes place from 6:30 to 8:30 pm and it’s free.  A DVD containing the stories is available for purchase.  At 6:00 pm the OPP host their Veterans’ Dinner at Quality Inn.

Week - End

Saturday May 26

-       11:00 am - The Midland Bay Sailing Club has its start-of-season Sail Past from their location

-       11:30 am – The Hanson Development Group hosts the groundbreaking for the Seasons on Little Lake project on Hwy 12.  You are invited to attend

-       8:00 pm - Stef Paquette entertains à La Clé d’la Baie, 63 rue Main, Penetanguishene.  Chanteur-auteur-interprète franco-ontarien, il reprend la route, sans sa guitare, ni de musiciens pour prouver aux gens qu'il n'est pas drôle pantoute!

Sunday May 27

-       12:30 pm – The Lions Guide Dog Walk steps out at the Town Dock

-       1:00 pm - Hike for Hospice takes place at Wye Marsh.  Registration opens at 11:00 am.

-       4:00 pm to 7:00 pm – Mayors Mac and Cheese dinner takes place at Phil’s Pub and Eatery on Hugel. Come enjoy a festive family meal with the mayors and help out the We Are the Villagers children’s charity.

Council Issues Update


General Committee recommended the Shareholders Agreement for our new Municipal Development Corporation, that will look after our Midland Bay Landing project. Once approved by Council we should be out looking for a new development partner by this fall.


Following the review of the natural heritage system, the project team is now finalizing Midland’s Draft Official Plan, a framework to guide and support future development in the Town.  Key features in the draft include:

-       Disaggregation of the “employment” designation into employment lands, employment areas, mixed use corridors and commercial corridors.  This will allow us greater flexibility if building a more livable community

-       Implementation of the Downtown Master Plan recommendations to support ongoing development, investment and revitalization in Midland’s downtown

The next step will be a Public Information Session scheduled for June. All recommended revisions will be incorporated into the Draft Official Plan. The OPR process will then pause for the election with the final Draft Official Plan targeted to be presented to Council in spring 2019.


Three items in closing:

1)     Southern Georgian Bay Farmers Markets will be returning to the 526 Bay Street Parking Lot (behind Subway) in downtown Midland, every Sunday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm (May 20th - October 7th, 2018)!

2)     On May 15th the Midland Fire Department will be launching the S.A.F.E program to educate residents on the need for working home smoke alarms.  This home program is completely voluntary - residents are free to participate or not.  The purpose of the program is to help residents with the installation and maintenance of smoke alarms.  The MFD will be knocking on doors throughout the Town to help residents with the location and operation of their alarms. 

3)     Summer movies return to the downtown at dusk at the 509 Bay Street Parking Lot. A hot summer lineup for you:

-       June 2 – Jungle Book

-       June 3- Canadian Bacon

-       July 4 - Jumanji

-       July 18 - Coco

-       August 1 - Avengers

-       August 15 - The Muppets

-       August 18 – Tragically Hip Concert

-       August 29 – Star Wars – The Last Jedi

-       October 13 – Hotel Transylvania

Gord McKay

The Year for Forging Our Future - 2018


Sunday, May 13, 2018

Sunday May 13, 2018

Ladies and Gentlemen

Seeing a lot more people out on the streets these day.  Must be spring.  And if spring is here our Ontario’s Best Butter Tart Festival is fast approaching.  They are looking for volunteers to help make the day a success.  If you, or someone you know, is interested in helping out on Saturday, June 9, please register at   There are plenty of opportunities to fit your schedule and interests.  All volunteers receive a t-shirt and lunch, including butter tarts for dessert – what else?

The Week Ahead

Monday the 14th at 7:00 pm you are invited to the May General Committee meeting at 7:00 pm at the Town. A relatively short agenda including:

-       Discussion on how we will welcome our cruise ship visitors this summer

-       SGB Farmers Market requests to move back to its former location on Bay Street

-       Lots of festival requests including: Canada Day plans, Rotary’s Random Acts of  Kindness Day and summer music returns to Little Lake Park

On Tuesday the County of Simcoe, will hold a Public Information Centre regarding the reform of the property tax rebate program that currently exists for vacant commercial and industrial buildings. The goal is to provide background information to those interested and to seek their feedback on proposed changes. That’s at the Simcoe County Museum, 1151 Highway 26 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm.  And from 4:00 to 7:00 pm our Community Living Huronia hosts an Open House at their 339 Olive Street location. You are most welcome to attend and find out how this important organization helps us all.

Wednesday May 16th invites you to attend a review of Midland’s transit service. You chance to provide comment on how well (or not) our transit service fits your needs. The consultation is from 2:00 to 4:00 pm and again from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm at the NSSRC.  And to encourage your attendance, Midland transit will be free to all during the time of the consultation.

Thursday the 17th local businesses, organizations and entrepreneurs from the skilled trades are hosting the 2018 edition of the Simcoe Muskoka Skilled Trades Expo at the Elmvale Community Arena. The student/school session for grades 7/8 is from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm, while parents and the general public are invited from 5:00 to 7:00 pm.  Also at 7:00 pm you may wish to drop by the Midland Library as they hold their regular Board Game Night.

Friday May 18th – are you ready for the long week-end? But first a busy Friday. At 9:00 am the County’s Affordable Housing Advisory committee reviews its 2017 highlights including a motel conversion in Barrie; allocating $2M for affordable housing in rural areas; building 1017 new affordable housing units over the last 3 years. Another very positive sign is that the Ontario and Federal governments are working together, committing an initial $4.2B for new housing over ten years.

At 11:30 am you are welcomed to Town Hall for the retirement party for Arlene Shirley.  Those who have met Arlene know of her sunny disposition and bottomless candy dish for all visitors.  She will be missed.  Port-O-Rama gets into high gear in Port McNicoll this week-end. All sorts of family activities.

And Friday also sees the start of the ever popular Uke Fest at the MCC.  This 3 day festival, the first Uke Fest in Ontario, allows ukulele players of all ages to participate in workshops, jam sessions, concerts and all things ukulele-based.

Week - End

Saturday May 19

-       All day - Port-O-Rama in Port McNicoll

-       All day – Uke Fest at the MCC

-       All day - Huronia Museum is now open 7 days a week

-       All day - Discovery Harbour is open for the season

-       12 noon - Opening of I’m So Cute a kids clothing store at the Georgian Bay Mall on King Street

Sunday May 20

-       All day - Port-O-Rama in Port McNicoll

-       All day – Uke Fest at the MCC

Council Issues Update

Downtown Safety

The first meeting of the Community Safety Task Force took place this past week.  The meeting confirmed the Terms of Reference and started organizing the consultation process that will engage interested parties in the community solution.

An informal survey shows relatively few safety related incidents in our downtown over the last few weeks.


Two items in closing:

1)     Beginning this October, The County of Simcoe will stop sending its curbside organics (Green Bin) to Hamilton and will instead begin shipping the material to an Elmira facility.  This will allow Simcoe to add pet wastes to its curbside organics program, starting this fall. The County considered adding diapers and other sanitary products to its organics collection but decided to defer this decision due to the technical challenges.

2)     GUYS WHO CARE - North Simcoe raised $17,000 in 45 minutes for Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Simcoe. Now that’s efficiency for you!  I understand a lady’s group – GBay Gals Give – is being organized to give the guys a run for their money. If you are a gal and want to join the fun, e-mail

Gord McKay

The Year for Forging Our Future - 2018


Sunday, May 6, 2018

Sunday May 6, 2018

Ladies and Gentlemen

In the spirit of the season our own Midland Garden Club is preparing a “Midland themed” garden that will be located at Martyrs’ Shrine. This garden is intended to demonstrate the connectedness of the Shrine to the local community. You are invited to attend the unveiling of the garden during a ceremony on June 10th. And remember that Sunday May 13th is Mother’s Day. Town restaurants will be busy so plan ahead.

The Week Ahead

Monday the 7th sees the first meeting of the Community Safety Task Force.  The meeting will focus on organizing the work and ensuring that we meet Council’s August deadline. The meeting is at 10:00 am at the Town Hall.

The Province will test the Ontario Alert Ready System at 1:55 PM using TV, radio and now through cell phones. The alert message will “test” the functionality of the system, and inform consumers of emergency alerts. You do not need to take any action with this test alert.

An information session is being held to update you on the new Waypoint Chigamik Healthcare Center – that’s from 4:30 pm to 6:00 pm at the Chigamik offices at 845 King St.  And at 5:30 pm Guys Who Care meet at the Midland Golf Club on Hwy. 93. If you are a guy, please join us as we raise funds for local charities.

On Tuesday May 8 County Council takes place at 9:00 am in Midhurst.  At 1:00 pm the Town holds its Governance Review Committee meeting, primarily to update our municipal procedure by-law. At 4:30 pm the Library’s teen event swings into gear with Bubble Art Print Making.

Create fantastic art for any space using these simple art supplies and household items. Ages 13-18 and it is FREE.

That evening Dr. Rose hosts Our Health - Medical Cannabis, Weeding Through the Issues - at MCC. Unfortunately it is sold out.  If you are having trouble getting out to this popular series, you can access them online by Googling Our Health North Simcoe, then, click on the Rogers TV site (bookmark for future reference) and choose which video you would like to view. 

On Wednesday you are invited to our annual Candlelight Ceremony at the Cenotaph.  We gather at 7:00 pm to pay tribute to the many who have given their lives for our freedom.

On Thursday the 10th all artists are invited to a grant information session with the Ontario Arts Council. The OAC provides funding in the areas of dance, literature, multi and inter-arts, music, theatre and the visual arts.  Their priority groups include Francophone, Indigenous and artists living in regions outside of Toronto. This free session runs from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. at the Midland Public Library. Those interested in attending are encouraged to RSVP to Karen Mealing.

Friday the 11th sees me at Rama for an all-day conference with the County. But if you want to have some fun, join our Library at their block party.  From 4:00 to 8:00 pm come celebrate the Library’s new brand, the arrival of spring and our awesome community!  We’re closing down Elizabeth Street between King and First and setting up giant jenga, duck races, green screen photos, and much more. It is free for all ages so come on down and join the party.  And if you are looking for something good to eat, plus lending a hand to the Wye Marsh, the third annual Wye Marsh Fundraising Dinner takes place from 5:00 to 7:00 pm at the Oakwood Community Center in Victoria Harbour.

Week - End

Saturday May 12

-       All day - Model train show at the NSSRC – A delight for children both little and big

-       All day - Martyrs' Shrine and Sainte-Marie Among the Hurons are open for the season

-       All day - Treasure Day Weekend – put your reusable treasures out by 8:00 and back in by 5:00 pm

-       11:00 am - New Saturday Storytime with Jess at the Midland Library

-       1:30 pm - Sistema variety show and fundraiser at the Alliance Church 829 Yonge Street Freewill offerings. (This event was rescheduled from earlier due to weather)

Sunday May 13

-       All day - Model train show continues  at the NSSRC

-       All day - Treasure Day Weekend – put your reusable treasures out by 8:00 and back in by 5:00 pm

-       11:00 am - Good Morning Apocalypse brings you something special for Mother’s Day.  Treat mom to the award-winning comedy troupe Good Morning Apocalypse at the MCC for a high tea and a comedy show, as they perform their brand-new Mother’s Day comedy revue: The Mom Show!

Gord McKay

The Year for Forging Our Future - 2018