October 3, 2019

Doors Open 2019 – Springwater 25th Anniversary

On September 21st the Cultural and Heritage Committees, with the assistance of Deputy Clerk Sasha Helmkay and Staff, created an event that incorporated the Province-wide “Doors Open” day with the special celebration of Springwater’s 25 Anniversary. We had 14 various groups from within the Township participate by bringing their artifacts, and history – and their people!  We partnered with the “Barn Quilt” folks from the County of Simcoe, and we had re-enactors (dressed in full regalia) from Fort Willow promoting the Fort. The last four Mayors’ “living history” video was well received and captures some interesting insights over the last 15 years of the Township present and past. The video is on the Springwater websiteavailable for all to ‘share’ through social media.

Backyard Chickens

In response to requests from residents, Council is reviewing “backyard chickens” in the Township of Springwater. Currently, chickens are only permitted on agriculturally-zoned areas with a minimum lot area of 86 acres. The Township is looking for feedback from residents on the potential of permitting backyard chickens in residential areas. Share your take on this matter by completing the survey online at www.springwater.ca/chickens orin person at the Township Administration Centre or any library branch. 

A public open house will be held on November 7, 2019 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Township Administration Centre (2231 Nursery Road, Minesing) to discuss the topic and obtain comments.

Off-Road Vehicles

Council in its last meeting approved directing Staff to continue with the review and report of the permitting of Off-Road Vehicles on Springwater roads and outlining the results of the public consultation process that was conducted and then to present to Council options for consideration.

Hasty Tracks Purchase

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) received a request by Springwater to purchase a portion of a Crown land property located at 1132 Snow Valley Road in the Township of Springwater, named Hasty Tracks. The Township intends to use the property for new capital construction projects. Facilities being considered include a Fire Station, multi-purpose recreational complex, multi-purpose outdoor fields and other public uses. The first facility proposed is a fire station. The remainder of the proposed development will be phased to meet the needs of the community. The land proposed for purchase by the Township is located on the east half of the property (approximately 40 to 50 acres).

This project purchase is being planned in accordance with guidelines under the Class Environmental Assessment for MNRF Resource Stewardship and Facility Development Projects. The following studies were completed on the site: Environmental Impact Study, Preliminary Stormwater Management Study, Stage 1 and 2 Archaeological Study, Phase 1 and 2 Environmental Site Assessment and Traffic Impact Study. The studies identified that the project will have no significant social, cultural and natural environmental impact. Mitigation measures have been developed based on the information obtained from the site assessments to further reduce environmental impacts on the site. A public information centre on the Class EA process and project evaluation and to receive comment from interested persons was held on September 26th at the Township office at 7pm. Public input and comment on the project will be incorporated into the planning process. Comments received before October 11, 2019 will be taken into consideration. For more information on the project, to submit comments, or to request further notice, please contact: Jeff Schmidt, CAO at the Township of Springwater.

50th Midhurst Autumnfest

The 50th annual Midhurst Autumnfest Fall Fair was a big success. Congratulations and thank you to the organizing committee, especially the three young students that took the lead this year—Hale Mahon, Ryan Khosrovaneh, and AJ Kapty—and Midhurst Community Recreation Association board members. Thank you also to all the local businesses that supported the event by sponsoring activities or participating as a vendor. 

The Township was excited to officially open the new Midhurst Pavilion with friends, family, and neighbours. We hope community members enjoy the park’s new feature for picnics, family gatherings, holiday events and more. 

Festival at Fort Willow

Visitors at the Festival at Fort Willow last weekend experienced history in action with displays, entertainment and re-enactments of life as it was over two centuries ago. On the students-only day, the site greeted nearly 1,000 students across Simcoe County for an interactive field trip. The Barrie Art Club joined festivities again by dressing up as re-enactors and painting in a collaboration with the public. Visitors of all ages could step up to the artist’s easel to try their hand at a few brush strokes of painting. 

Thank you to the Rotary Club of Barrie that puts on a BBQ each year at the festival. Proceeds from the sale of food and beverages at the event are donated to the Friends of Historic Fort Willow to assist with their restoration efforts. Thank you also to the Friends of Historic Fort Willow and the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority for everything they do to help make this annual event educational and fun. 

Community Improvement Plan

The Township of Springwater has a Community Improvement Plan (CIP) to support and encourage new development within the Township. The CIP also invests in façade improvements, new signage, and building renovations and improvements. There are eight CIP program areas available to eligible applicants, from permit fee rebates to historic property improvements. Council recently approved an application by a business in Elmvale to share in the cost of signage and exterior improvement for a total of $5,522. Learn more at www.springwater.ca/CIP.  

Elmvale Fall Fair 

The Flos Agricultural Society will host the 159th annual Elmvale Fall Fair from October 10-12. As always, there will be agricultural displays, fair entries, rides, and games. The school parade will be held on Friday and the general parade will be held on Saturday. There will be many vendors inside the Elmvale Arena on Friday and Saturday for local shopping and interest clubs. Discounted admission wrist bands are available at G & S Computers in Elmvale from September 23 to October 10, 2019

The Elmvale Fall Fair Ambassador Competition will be held on October 11, which is an incredible opportunity for our community’s young leaders. Talented musicians will take to the stage each night, starting with country star Manny Blu.

Business Breakfast

The Township is hosting a complimentary Business Breakfast on October 24 at the Elmvale Arena to celebrate local business owners and operators. This is a great opportunity for local businesses to meet municipal staffand Council, network with other businesses, and learn more about available support programs in Simcoe County. If you own or operate a business in Springwater and haven’t already received your invitation, please contact edo@springwater.ca to RSVP. 

Outdoor SaveStations

We’re proud to announce that Springwater is the first municipality to introduce numbers of outdoor SaveStations installed across Springwater at parks, community centres and library branches. Each SaveStation houses a life-saving defibrillator (AED), which residents and visitors can access atany time of day or night during an emergency. Free community AED/CPR training will be held this fall at various locations throughout the municipality. Details will be released soon -watch www.springwater.ca for updates. 

Red Pine House Forestry Education Centre

I joined Warden George Cornell and fellow County Councillors, staff and area forestry partners on September 24 to unveil Simcoe County Museum’s latest attraction—The Red Pine House: Forestry Education Centre. The Education Centre features an exploration area for children ages 3-9, where children can learn about different elements of Simcoe County Forests, and provides information on the life of a tree—from seed to harvesting. The Centre also includes historic artifacts such as a tree planter, seed board and double bitted axe, among other pieces. Interpretive panels depict the chronological history of the forests of Simcoe County. Details about the ongoing Kirtland’s Warbler endangered species habitat restoration initiative are also highlighted.

The comments here reflect my perspective and do not necessarily represent those of the whole of Council.

Check out my recent radio interview reviewing current Springwater news items with Rock95 and 107.5 KOOL FMnews director Dan Blakeley. See https://barrie360.com/springwater-update/

Contact me at don.allen@springwater.ca or 705-728-4784 ext. 2013 to set a time to meet or reach me directly at 705-302-4253. We can also stay connected on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @MayorDonAllen and review updates on www.donallen.ca.