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Friday, October 31, 2014

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Great Pumpkin Trail Offers Safe Trick or Treating
Friday, October 31, 2014 (132 reads)

The 26th Annual Great Pumpkin Trail, a great alternative to having your children go door to door through busy streets in traffic, in the dark will be held tonight starting at 5pm in the Pioneer Village.  This traffic free and youngster driven Hallowe'en event proves as much of a social event for the parents as it is for the kids.

Trick or Treaters will be given a site map to assist them in their adventure. Individuals or businesses sponsor pioneer buildings by decorating the doorways and outside areas in a theme, then dress in costume and shell out the candy Muskoka Heritage Place provides.

Admission is $3 or $10 for the family.

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Town Adopts New Flag Policy
Friday, October 31, 2014 (1290 reads)

Huntsville Town Council modified the town's flag policy yesterday, following controversy last week after Cpl. Nathan Cirillo was killed in Ottawa and the flags in Huntsville were not lowered.

Mayor Claude Doughty explained that the flag policy was written for the Town Hall flag, which was lowered after concern was expressed by members of the community.  Doughty said the policy did not cover the events in Ottawa, and he elected to not lower the flag, as he had not lowered it for Warrant Officer Vincent who was killed two days earlier.

The new policy will see the Town Hall flag and most others flags throughout town lowered at the request of the mayor, if something occurs that is not on the policy.

Council discussed the matter of replacing some flag poles that do not have the capability of lowering the flag without taking the pole down itself.  A report will come back to the next council to decide.

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15cm On The Way
Friday, October 31, 2014 (3194 reads)

The Weatherman is warning that Halloween brings the first significant snowfall of the season.  A low pressure system developing over Eastern Lake Superior is tracking southeast towards the Lower Great Lakes. An area of precipitation associated with this system is expected to begin advancing into Southern Ontario and continue through tonight.

Precipitation is expected to begin as wet snow East of Georgian Bay, including the Haliburton Highlands.

Current indications suggest that total snowfall amounts of 10 to 15 cm will be possible.

The snow is expected to taper off early Saturday as the low system pulls away to the southeast.

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Miller Applauds Release of Ornge Air Ambulance Report
Friday, October 31, 2014 (298 reads)

Norm Miller is pleased that the Ornge Air Ambulance and Related Services Summary Report was finally tabled in the Provincial Legislature yesterday. Miller says that this report is the culmination of over two years of hard work by Public Accounts Committee.

The report details the investigation into the practices at Ornge Air Ambulance and raises a number of specific areas of concern to the Provincial Government, including:

• Compensation of executives and salary disclosure

• Design and procurement of the helicopter fleet

• Conduct of the Board of Directors

Miller said “During my time as Chair of the Public Accounts Committee work on the Ornge investigation saw dozens of witnesses testify and consumed countless sessional days. The entire process has spanned over two calendar years.”

Miller introduced new legislation in the form of a Private Member’s Bill in the spring of 2014. that strengthens the powers of Ontario’s Auditor General to allow her office to follow provincial dollars that flow into third party organizations. This bill was debated and passed second reading shortly before the Legislature was dissolved in May for the purposes of a general election.

Miller has re-introduced the Auditor General Amendment Act this session as Bill 25.

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Clement Says That Family Tax Cut Puts $1140 Back in Families Pockets
Friday, October 31, 2014 (699 reads)

Parry Sound-Muskoka MP Tony Clement said new measures announced yesterday, including the Family Tax Cut, will help make life more affordable for hard-working families across our region.

All families with children will benefit from the new measures introduced by the Conservative Government. The average tax relief and benefits for these families will be $1,140 in 2015.

Clement said that “Parry Sounders and Muskokans tell me that helping families make ends meet is a big priority. They want us to make important priorities like child care and after-school sports more affordable. Under this plan, every family with children in Parry Sound-Muskoka will have more money in their pockets, to spend on the priorities they choose," he said.

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10-15cm Accumulation for Halloween
Thursday, October 30, 2014 (27943 reads)

The Weatherman is warning that Halloween brings the first significant snowfall of the season.

A low pressure system developing over Eastern Lake Superior will track southeast towards the Lower Great Lakes Friday. An area of precipitation associated with this system is expected to begin advancing into Southern Ontario tonight and continue through Friday night.

Precipitation is expected to begin as wet snow East of Georgian Bay, including the Haliburton Highlands  and will begin overnight and snow will continue through Friday and  into Friday night.

Current indications suggest that total snowfall amounts of 10 to 15 cm will be possible Friday and Friday night. However actual snowfall accumulation on the ground in these areas may be less due to melting on the still relatively warm ground.

The snow is expected to taper off early Saturday as the low system pulls away to the southeast.

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Kitchen Fire Causes $70,000 Damage
Thursday, October 30, 2014 (10040 reads)

A crew from Huntsville Station 1 responded to a report of smoke at a residence on Dairy Lane shortly after 7pm.  Upon entering, the crew found a fire in the kitchen above the stove and were able to contain the damage to that area. 

The occupants of the home discovered the house filled with smoke upon returning to the home.  Smoke‎ and fire damage is estimated at‎ ‎$70,000.00. The cause has not been determined.

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Women of Distinction Recipients Announced
Thursday, October 30, 2014 (13722 reads)

The happening place to be last night was the Bracebridge Sportsplex for the 2014 YWCA Women of Distinction event.  Attendees enjoyed the Marche style food and drink and a fireside chat with Dara and Dee Howell.  There were silent and live auctions, the liveliest being lunch with Tony Clement that went for $140.00.

The well-deserving award recipients of the various categories included:

Wendie Donabie - Arts, Culture and Creativity

Cheryl Dove - Health, Sports and Wellness

JoAnn Jordan - Mentorship

Debbie Kirwin- Community development and social Activism

Arden McGregor - Business Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Barbara Power - Lifetime Achievement

Hailey Scott - Young Woman of Distinction

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Flag Protocol Subject of Special Council Meeting Today
Thursday, October 30, 2014 (2312 reads)

The Town of Huntsville has called a special council meeting for this afternoon and will be discussing a report from staff on Huntsville's Flag Protocol.  The flag policy came under heavy fire last week after the events in Ottawa resulting in Huntsville not lower its flags to half mast compared to most municipalities in the region and around the country.

Council will then go into closed session to hear a report on staff matter related to the Public Works operational review.

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Military Recover Tail Section of Downed Plane
Wednesday, October 29, 2014 (2724 reads)

Two young airmen killed during the Second World War were honoured with a moment of silence yesterday as wreckage of their crashed plane was pulled from Lake Muskoka.

A recovery team hoisted a wheel and part of the plane’s tail section from Lake Muskoka, where the Northrop A-17 Nomad sank in December 1940 after a mid-air collision.

Both airplanes were on a rescue mission searching for an airman who had gone missing.

The other plane was located shortly after the crash; both men on board were killed.

The 24-year-old pilot Peter Campbell and 27-year-old observer Theodore Bates was found in 2010 after the military conducted a search.  The remains of Campbell and Bates were pulled from the water in 2012.

The military says that they hope to have the main fuselage of the plane out of the water by Sunday.

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Mother Nature Dishing Out Tricks on Hallowe'en
Wednesday, October 29, 2014 (2039 reads)

Mother Nature will be dishing out tricks and treats this Halloween.  According to the Weather Network, Canadians in the western and northern parts of the country generally won’t need to worry about frightful weather this Friday.

However some parts of the country will getting tricked. Chief Meteorologist Chris Scott says British Columbia and the Territories may see some scattered showers, and dry conditions will prevail across the Prairies.

It’s a different story in Ontario and Quebec, where Scott says temperatures are forecast to fall to the lowest levels of the season and even dip to -2 overnight on Friday.

Scott says Atlantic Canada residents will be treated to nicer weather, as stormy conditions will hold off til Saturday.

The abrupt change, Scott said, means parents will want to take extra care when dressing their children for their Halloween adventures.

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Gravenhurst Re-elects Donaldson
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (340 reads)

Paisley Donaldson has been returned as Mayor of Gravenhurst, while Sandy Cairns, Paul Kelly and Terry Pilger were elected as District councilors.

Heidi Lorenz, Erin Eiter, Bob Colhoun, Randy Jorgensen & Jeff Watson round out the rest of the council table.

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Bracebridge's Graydon Smith Wins in Landslide
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (692 reads)

Bracebridge Mayor Graydon Smith was returned for a second term in a landslide victory over Phil Kolyn.

Steve Clement, Lori-Lynn Giaschi-Pacini &  Don Smith were all elected for District.

Bracebridge Ward saw Chris Wilson beat out 2 other candidates, while Rick Maloney was successfully re-elected in Macaulay ward.

Archie Buie, and Barb McMurray were re-elected in Draper and Oakley wards.

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Firefighters Respond to Buck Lake Fire
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (4360 reads)

Shortly after 2 pm yesterday Huntsville and Port Sydney fire crews respond to a structure fire just north of Huntsville on Buck Lake. When crews arrived they found the building totally involved and had to contend with not only the building fire but also two large propane tanks that were burning.  The fire was quickly knocked down and the propane tanks were controlled to safely allow the propane to burn off. The property owner was on site at the time but working outside when he noticed the fire inside the main building. The exact cause of the fire is still being investigated and crews will be looking a small propane heater that was operating in the living room area. No dollar value has been place on the loss at this time.

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No Changes at Lake of Bays
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (399 reads)

In Lake of Bays, Mayor Bob Young, and councilors Glover and Baker were acclaimed.   They are joined by Robert Lacroix, Nancy Tapley, Ruth Ross & Ginny Burgess.

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Aitchison Wins Huntsville's Top Job
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (15014 reads)

Scott Aitchison is Huntsville's new mayor beating both former mayor Hugh Mackenzie and first time councilor Tim Withey.  Aitchison came in with 3708 votes compared to Mackenzie at 2264 and Withey at 2198.

In Huntsville ward, Bob Stone was successful, while Det Shumacher and Chris Zanetti were both re-elected for Stisted, Stephenson and Port Sydney wards.  Jonathan Wiebe came in on top, with 2039 votes in Chaffey ward and Dan Armour easily won in Brunel.

In District long time council John Davis was defeated, with councilors Karin Terziano and Brian Thompson returning.  They're joined by new comer Nancy Alcock.

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Furniss Upsets Murphy
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (3217 reads)

In Muskoka Lakes Township, Don Furniss who beat incumbent Alice Murphy last night, said his first priority it to meet with the incoming council and make sure everyone is on the same page.  He said they need a strategic plan and codes of conduct.

In the District races, Ward A Ruth-Ellen Nicshikawa beat challenger Greg Knight, while Allen Edwards was acclaimed in Ward B.  Phil Harding won in Ward C, narrowly beating W. Ron Brent.

Sandy Currie, Gault McTaggart, & Jean-Anne Baranik round out the council table.

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Thrale Tops Kearney Race
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 (1471 reads)

In Kearney, Lance Thrale topped for polls in the mayor’s race with 647 votes.  Art Murdy and John Canning trailed behind with 349 and 144 votes respectively.

Yvonne Wills, Carol Ballentyne, Ron Patton, Ken Ball, Paul Ziraldo, & Cheryl Phillips were all successful council candidates.

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Military Begin Recovery of WWII Era Plane From Lake Muskoka
Monday, October 27, 2014 (7623 reads)

The military has begun an operation to recover a plane that crashed in Lake Muskoka in 1940 after crashing with another plane while in a training mission during World War II.

The Northrop Nomad 3521 collided with another plane in December  in 1940 during a training mission, crashing into Lake Muskoka.

Military divers recovered the bodies of the airman in 2012 and are undergoing an operation to recover the training aircraft from the bottom of the lake.

The operation is expected to take up to 10 days and the plane's wreckage  will be turned over to the National Air Force Museum of Canada.

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Hot Ashes Cause Fires
Monday, October 27, 2014 (6712 reads)

Two recent fires have Gravenhurst firefighters issuing a reminder to properly dispose of fireplace and wood stove residue. Late Saturday afternoon, firefighters were summoned to a North Muldrew Lake Road address after ashes disposed of outside, ignited a brush fire.  Alert neighbours saw the smoke and started to extinguish the fire while the fire department was being called. Strong gusty winds most likely stirred up the ash pile and then threatened to spread the fire as it grew in the brush.


A similar case which could have had a disastrous outcome occurred earlier this month when residents of a cottage on Kilworthy Road vacuumed up what they thought were cool ashes from a wood stove. The ashes started a fire inside the central vacuuming system. The fire damaged the central vac system but fortunately did not spread further.

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Load Restrictions in Place For Stephenson Rd 1 Bridge
Monday, October 27, 2014 (3540 reads)

Engineers from the Town of Bracebridge came before Huntsville Town Council on Friday to advise them of repairs that need to be done to the Stephenson Rd 1 bridge that both municipalities share.  The engineers told councilors that the load restrictions for the bridge have once again been lowered, this time to 5 tonnes or the weight of a pickup truck.

The engineers report that repairs will have to be done to the wooden deck, which is rotting out - until the bridge is replaced.

Councilors heard that the plan is to replace the bridge with a bailey bridge sitting on concrete piers, pending funding from the province.  The engineers said more repairs will have to be done, if there is a delay in replacing the structure next year.

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Mayor's Golf Tournament Donates to Charities
Monday, October 27, 2014 (807 reads)

Huntsville town council donated another $7,000 to the Table Food Bank on Friday, bringing the total up to $27,000 in the last month.  The money is part of the funds raised at the Mayor’s Golf Tournament.

Besides donations to the Food Bank, last month the town donated $5000 to the Salvation Army, and $1500 each to the YWCA, Junior Achievement and Muskoka Sexual Assault Services.

On Friday, the town donated $1500 to Christine’s Place, The Door, and an additional $500 to Muskoka Sexual Assault Services.

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Muskoka Lakes Recruiting Firefighters
Monday, October 27, 2014 (820 reads)

The Township of Muskoka Lakes Fire Department is recruiting people who are interested in becoming a Firefighter.  The Township of Muskoka Lakes will be holding an Information Session at the Port Carling Fire Station, Thursday, October 30th, at 7:00 pm.

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Flotrons to Close
Monday, October 27, 2014 (14398 reads)

Flotron's in downtown Huntsville announced that they are going out of business yesterday.  The business is part of a chain operated under the name Tweed & Hickory, which bought the historic business nearly 20 years ago.

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Voters Can Cast Ballots Until 8pm - Full Results Tonight
Monday, October 27, 2014 (16817 reads)

After months of hearing from the candidates in Huntsville's mayoral race, voters will be casting their ballots in the municipal election.

Residents will decide whether to return former mayor Hugh Mackenzie to office, or elect long time councilor Scott Aitchison or relative new comer Tim Withey to the mayor’s office.

Voters in Bracebride will choose between incumbent Graydon Smith or challenger Phil Kolyn.  In Muskoka Lakes Don Furniss is taking on incumbent Alice Murphy in what is a very contentious election.  Lake of Bays has returned Mayor Bob Young by acclimation.

If you haven't voted yet, you can turn your ballot in and vote at area town halls until 8pm tonight.  In Huntsville, voter turnout is high, with nearly 7,000 ballots cast.  We'll have full details on the results tonight after the polls close.

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New Memorial to be Dedicated Tomorrow
Friday, October 24, 2014 (22797 reads)

The Town of Huntsville and the Huntsville Legion Branch 232 are inviting the public to a dedication ceremony to be held at the new memorial installation at memorial park behind the Active Living Centre.

The dedication, honoring those who served and continue to serve the country will be held at 11am on Saturday and will include a Colour Party, and remarks from the Legion President and Mayor Claude Doughty.

Given the recent events in Ottawa, the public is invited to attend.

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Clement Recounts Emotional Return to Work Yesterday
Friday, October 24, 2014 (5302 reads)

MP Tony Clement said that yesterday was full of emotion starting his day at the National War Memorial, watching Prime Minister Harper lay a wreath where Cpl Nathan Cirillo died the day before, in what Clement called a day of insanity.

Clement said that MP's were united and happy to be back to work and it was important to be in our chairs.  MP’s thanked Sergeant -at-arms Kevin Vickers as he entered the chamber with a standing ovation.

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Huntsville Town Hall Open Tomorrow to Assist Voters
Friday, October 24, 2014 (430 reads)

Huntsville Town Hall will be open on Saturday from 9am - Noon to assist eligible voters to register and vote in Monday's Municipal election.  Any resident who has not voted can come into town  hall, register and vote.  This applies to residents who may have lost or never received a ballot in the mail.  Anyone who has a ballot, is asked to return it to town hall by 8pm on Monday.

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Huntsville Town Hall Flag Lowered
Friday, October 24, 2014 (8439 reads)

After a public outcry, the Canadian flag has been lowered in Huntsville.  The decision came late last night after MP Tony Clement talked with Mayor Claude Doughty.  The town had originally decided to lay a wreath commemorating the events that led to the death of Cpl Nathan Cirillo in Ottawa on Wednesday.

Councilor Scott Aitchison explained to concerned residents that the town's flag policy didn't cover such events and ultimately it was up to the mayor who had decided that laying a wreath was appropriate.

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Last Low Cost Rabies Clinic Tomorrow
Friday, October 24, 2014 (2325 reads)

Saturday is the last day low cost rabies clinics will be held in the area.  Each October, veterarians in the area participate in a low cost rabies vaccination program held by the Simcoe Muskoka Health Unit.

Tomorrow the clinic will be held at the Bracebridge Fire Dept  from 10am -2pm.  The cost is $20.

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Book Your Flu Shot Online
Friday, October 24, 2014 (486 reads)

The Simcoe Muskoka Health Unit is urging you to get your flu shot sa ying that the flu season is just around the corner and it make sense to get the shot now so your body is set to defend against the flu virus.

This year, flu clinics are by appointment and can be booked online. The Health Unit says the vaccine protect  you and your family, friends and anyone that works or plays close to you.

To book your appointment , follow the link

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Donaldson Comments on Events in Ottawa
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (15428 reads)

Mayor Paisley Donaldson commented on yesterday's events in Ottawa and said Gravenhurst is shocked and saddened by the tragic events in Ottawa yesterday. We extend our deepest sympathies to the family of fallen soldier, Cpl.Nathan Cirillo, and to all, who stand for our democratic freedoms every day, our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult moment.


Flags at the Gravenhurst Municipal Town Hall will be lowered to half-staff.

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Coleman Honoured At District
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (673 reads)

District Councilor Fran Coleman was honoured on Monday by fellow District Councilors , constituents and District staff.  “I must start off by saying we are NOT naming this room after a politician!” began Community Services Committee Vice-Chair, Steve Clement.  “We are naming this room after a dedicated, thoughtful and compassionate person who just happens to be a politician.” 

The Pines Community Room in Bracebridge was named after Fran Coleman for her determination to fight against homelessness, her fight for attainable housing, her advocacy for child care and housing for seniors and she was one of the driving forces that lobbied all levels of government for funding to build the new Pines, the addition to the Pines and McVittie Place.

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Huntsville Council Meets Tomorrow
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (8685 reads)

Huntsville Council will be holding their monthly council meeting tomorrow instead of Monday, which is election day.

Council will get an update on the remaining funds from the Mayors Golf Tournament and decide how to distribute the funds which will be in excess of $10,000.  Council had donated $20,000 from the Tournament to the Table Food Bank last month.

Council will also hear a report from the District on an affordable housing initiative.

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Voters Can Cast Ballots Right Up Until Monday Night
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (243 reads)

Voters are being reminded to drop off their ballots at municipal offices in the remaining days before Monday's election.  Eligible voters who have not received a ballot can vote by going into your municipal office and registering and voting up and until Monday at 8pm.

The Town of Huntsville will be open on Saturday from 9am-noon to allow people to vote.

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PM Says Canada Will Counter Threats & Keep Canada Safe
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (856 reads)

Prime Minister Harper addressed the nation last night, and said "Today, our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Corporal Nathan Cirillo of the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders of Canada.

He said "in the days to come, we will learn more about the terrorist and any accomplices he may have had.  But this week’s events are a grim reminder that Canada is not immune to the types of attacks we have seen elsewhere around the world."

Harper continued by saying “But let there be no misunderstanding. We will not be intimidated - Canada will never be intimidated"

Harper said that the nation security agencies will take all steps to identify and counter threats, and keep Canada safe here at home.

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Death of Soldier "Crushing" - Clement
Thursday, October 23, 2014 (18298 reads)

MP Tony Clement said that yesterday's events in Ottawa that ended up in the death of a Canadian Soldier was crushing and he and his colleagues extend their condolences to the family of 24 year old Nathan Cirillo.

Clement told HBR that he was in caucus when they first heard noises that they assumed was construction, then came to realize that if was gunfire.   Clement said that the PM was rushed out of the caucus room and he and fellow MP's barricaded the door to prevent gun men entering the room and spraying it with bullets.

Clement was able to get out of the room with a group of other MP's and find an empty office where they waited for security personnel to rescue them.  Later in the day they were moved to a room in the peace tower and wait until nearly 8pm before being able to leave the building.

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Huntsville Mayor Claude Doughty "Shocked & Saddened" By Events in Ottawa
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (8284 reads)

Huntsville Mayor Claude Doughty said today "I watched the live news and was shocked and saddened to see the events as they unfolded today in Ottawa.

The last time I had that feeling was on 9/11. The world continues to change and sometimes not for the better."

Doughty said that "On behalf of all residents of Huntsville our sympathies go out to the family of the fallen soldier who was so needlessly murdered today in Ottawa. Like him, all of the soldiers who have served our country so well and who have fallen in the line of duty deserve our thanks, our appreciation and  our respect."

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Clement Calls Constituency Office to Report He's Safe & In Lock Down
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (14730 reads)

Police are asking the public in Ottawa to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity.  When asked if the situation has been resolved, Police said that it is too early to determine that and if there is a 3rd suspect.

A perimeter has been set up about the immediate area around Parliament Hill and an ongoing operation is ongoing to clear the area before the area is deemed safe and opened up to the public.

One shooter is dead, a Hamilton soldier has been killed,  another shooter has been reported shot, and possibly another on the loose.

MP Tony Clement is in a safe location at Parliament Hill.

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One Shooter Dead, Police Pursuing Another
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (105 reads)

One shooter is dead inside the Centre block and police are pursuing a second possible shooter in Ottawa.  A man with a long gun has shot a soldier who was standing guard at the War Memorial has died according to reports.  MP Tony Clement reports at least 30 shots fired during  a caucus meeting.  Parliament is in lock down according to Clement's Office until the situation is safe.

Government offices all across Ottawa are in lockdown and all Canadian Forces bases across Canada are closed to the public.

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Shots Fired Near Parliament Hill
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (15240 reads)

A man with a long gun has shot a soldier who was standing guard at the War Memorial in Ottawa this morning.  MP Tony Clement reports at least 30 shots fired during  a caucus meeting.  Parliament is in lock down according to Clement's Office until the situation is safe.

Ottawa police have sealed off the area are warning people to stay away from Parliament Hill.

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Swift River Quiet on Future Plans
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (703 reads)

The Swift River Energy Company is still obtaining the necessary permits before they can enter the site of the proposed hydro electric project in Bala.  The District had given permission to the company to enter the site on Monday, after the Cranberry Festival had come to an end.

However, the MRN says that while the project is slated to go ahead, some permits are still required.

The company however issued a statement saying that they are working with MNR on how best to proceed with on-site works.  They said that given the sensitivities around the situation, they were not at liberty to provide any further details.

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Regional Fire Dept Could Be a Reality for Southern Almaguin
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (1256 reads)

Armour Township Reeve Bob MacPhail says that the township should be looking at creating a regional fire department. Macphail said that if a South Almaguin fire service was created, costs could be reduced by sharing equipment and possibly having fewer fire halls. 

MacPhail said that reducing the number of halls could create savings, but maintained that there would not be any job losses due to the change.

The plan is to pursue the idea with the next council with the goal of  having the new structure in place in a few years.

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District Announces New Commissioner of Planning & Economic Development
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (7381 reads)

The District of Muskoka has announced that Samantha Hastings has been selected as the new Commissioner of Planning & Economic Development.

Ms. Hastings, a resident of Bracebridge, has been with the District since 1999 and has held the Acting

Commissioner position since June of 2013.

As the Commissioner of Planning & Economic Development, Samantha will lead the District in the areas of Planning, Environmental Policy & Programs, Economic Development, Geographical Information

Systems and the Muskoka Airport. She will work closely with Council and Senior Management to advise on a wide range of matters and their impact on the District.

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Town Hall Open Late to Accept Ballots & Register Voters
Wednesday, October 22, 2014 (524 reads)

The Town of Huntsville will open late tonight to accept ballots and register voters who have not received a ballot for this municipal election.  The municipal office will be open until 6.30pm tonight and will open on Saturday from 9am ‘til noon to assist voters cast their ballots.

Anyone, who has a ballot is advised to drop it off at town hall rather than mail it, to ensure it arrives in time to be counted.

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Female Elementary Students to Learn Computer Programming
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (3320 reads)

On October 23, girls from elementary schools will take part in the TechnoGirls program at Huntsville High School. TechnoGirls is an educational program designed to enrich female elementary students on the opportunities in the field of computer science.

High school mentors will teach the elementary students basic computer programming skills and the participating elementary students will return to their schools and teach what they learned to their classmates. Members will reconnect throughout the year with the high school mentors to discuss their progress.

The final goal for the students is to create a cell phone application that will meet a need in their community.

The TechnoGirls will be heading to the TLDSB LEGO Robofair in the spring to demonstrate their new skills.

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Miller Pleased With Nurse Practitioner Station Announcements
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (2442 reads)

Norm Millar MPP for Parry Sound Muskoka applauded the decision to fund new nursing stations in Muskoka yesterday, saying “I am very pleased with the decision by the Minister of Health to make this local proposal a reality."

“Providing access to healthcare is a challenge, particularly when many in need of care already travel great distances to receive treatment,”  he said. “I believe putting this ‘Made-in-Muskoka’ plan into effect will help to address the key challenges faced by seniors and low income families, as well as the seasonal residents” added Miller.

“The success of nursing stations in the Parry Sound District illustrates the value that they provide for small, rural communities. With the significant community support that exists already for the District of Muskoka plan, I look forward to first steps of establishing these new nursing stations.” he said

Details of the decision include:

• Funding for a 3-year demonstration project for primary care staff in community hubs in the Port Carling and Dorset areas

• A mobile nursing station unit to provide service to the communities of Port Severn and Severn Bridge

• Reinstating nursing support for the Wahta First Nation

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Dorset Approved for Nurse Practitioner Station
Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (876 reads)

Dorset has been approved for funding of a Nurse Practitioner Station.  The announcement was made yesterday by Lake of Bays Twp.  Dr Eric Hoskins, Minister for Health and long term care approved the Dorset Hub, plus a similar facility in Port Carling and re-instating funding for the Wahta Mohawk facility.

Mayor Bob Young said that the project could not have happened without the strong support of the community.

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High Water Level Advisory in Effect
Monday, October 20, 2014 (4862 reads)

The Ministry of Natural Resources have issued a Water Safety Statmenent for all watersheds within the District Municipality of Muskoka, Parry Sound and a north-west portion in the County of Haliburton.

Water levels and flows in local lakes and rivers have been higher than what is normally expected or experienced at this time of year due to rainfall amounts received including isolated but extreme rainfall events that have occurred across the region over the last few weeks.

Residents and those visiting the area are advised to be aware of current watershed conditions, exercise caution while around waterbodies and maintain close supervision of children and pets.

The MNR is warning that water levels and flows are expected to rise in the coming days as a result of the forecasted rainfall amounts and the current saturated watershed conditions.

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Utterson Student Awarded Bursary
Monday, October 20, 2014 (2987 reads)

An Utterson student has been awarded a $500 bursary by the province in a program that recognizes students who demonstrated excellent performance while working at an Ontario Park this past summer.

Taylor Madden, who attends Carleton University and worked at Arrowhead Provincial Park this summer, is one of 30 recipients this year in a field of over 1500 students who worked in the parks during the summer.

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Voters Reminded Not to Mail Their Ballots
Monday, October 20, 2014 (4746 reads)

Registered voters who have not mailed in their ballot for this municipal election are being advised not to drop your ballot in the mail starting today and instead take them to your municipal office to ensure that they will be received on time.

In Huntsville over 5,000 ballots have arrived at Town Hall compared with over 8,000 votes cast in the last election, which was held using the internet.

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Lakeland Donates $10,000 to Local Hospital Foundations
Monday, October 20, 2014 (258 reads)

Lakeland Holdings, owners of Lakeland Power, Bracebridge Generation and Lakeland Energy has announced that they have donated a combined $10,000 to the South Muskoka Hospital Foundation and Huntsville Hospital Foundation.

“We are extremely grateful,” says Paul Hammond, of the South Muskoka Hospital Foundation.  Hammond said that their $5,000 would be applied to the Foundation’s diagnostic imaging project which includes replacement of the hospital’s CT scanner and mammography machines as well as upgrades to the hospital’s x-ray suites.

In Huntsville, the $5,000 will be used to support the Diagnostic Imaging CT Scanner in Huntsville and for other priorities such as upgrades to the Chemo suite and digital communications according to John Crockett, Chair of the Huntsville Hospital Foundation.

Chris Litschko, Chief Executive Officer of Lakeland Holdings said that the company has increased annual contributions to $50,000 within our local communities.

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Bracebridge Dog Park Receives Grant
Friday, October 17, 2014 (862 reads)

Members of the Bracebridge Off Leash Dog Park Committee announced they received a $15,000 grant, from the TransCanada Pipelines Limited Community Investment Program, to assist in the development of a Dog Park at Kerr Park.  The estimated cost to construct the 1.7 acre Dog Park, is $40,000.

The Dog Park will be located at the southwest corner of Kerr Park.   Lori-Lynn Giaschi-Pacini, Chair of the Bracebridge Off Leash Dog Park Committee said “This location is ideal because of its easy access from the parking lot, trees for shade, close to the Trans Canada Trail, and its access in the winter as the parking lot is plowed.”

The Committee is launching a fundraising drive to raise the additional funding needed to build the Dog Park. Donations are being accepted at the Bracebridge Sportsplex, Bracebridge Municipal Office, or on-line at

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Autumn Home Tour for Huntsville Hospital Auxiliary Tomorrow
Friday, October 17, 2014 (341 reads)

The Huntsville Hospital Auxiliary is holding their annual Autumn Home Tour tomorrow.  Six homeowners and the Waterloo Centre will open their doors to the public.  Tickets are $25 and include art displays, tablescapes and lunch at the Active Living Centre.

Tickets can be purchased at the Algonquin Theatre or at the Branches Hospital Gift Shop.

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MNR Admit No Lease At Bala Falls
Friday, October 17, 2014 (4982 reads)

A letter written by a Bala Falls resident has sparked an admission by the MNR that there is no active lease for a proposed hydro project in Bala.  Bill Purkis challenged the MNR to admit that it did not  have a signed lease for the crown lands at the Bala Falls.  Purkis also stipulated that since there was no lease, the company, Swift River Energy and their agents have no right to cut down or harm any trees or do any other site work near the property.

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Zombies Infest Arrowhead Park Tomorrow
Friday, October 17, 2014 (1124 reads)

The Running Scared 5km Trail run returns Saturday, October 18 and is promising to take participants through the beautiful landscapes of Arrowhead Provincial Park.  Like last year, participants will have to run for their lives from flesh hungry zombies while conquering obstacles strategically placed throughout the course.

The event starts at 1pm, with Shuttles running from the Staples parking lot for participants. Laganza will be performing after the run, with a BBQ and refreshments.

For more info, visit

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Theo Fleury Speaks At Algonquin Theatre Tonight for Victor Movement
Thursday, October 16, 2014 (677 reads)

The Muskoka Victor Movement is bringing Stanley Cup Champion Theo Fleury to Huntsville tonight.  Fleury, who championed the Victor Movement will be bringing the issue of child sexual abuse into the light to help support Muskoka's children who are victims of sexual abuse and help turn them from victims into victors.

One organizer of the event said that “When Theo Fleury addressed the crowd of more than 500 people at St. Clair College you could hear a pin drop. His message was both sad and powerful. Communities, schools, youth programs...all of us, have a responsibility to protect young people from the realities that Theo experienced.

Funds raised will go to the Muskoka Victor Therapy Fund for treatment of local youth impacted by sexual abuse.

Tickets are $30 and can be purchased through the Algonquin Theatre box office or online at

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Gravenhurst Hires New Treasurer
Thursday, October 16, 2014 (1121 reads)

Gravenhurst Mayor Paisley Donaldson and Dave Weldon, Chief Administrative Officer announced yesterday that after completing a national executive search, the Gravenhurst Town Council has hired Val Sequeira as its new Director of Corporate Services-Treasurer.

Mr. Sequeira has over 20 years of relevant experience, including positions held at the City of Scarborough, City of Toronto, York Region, and the Town of Amherstburg. He holds a Masters Certificate in Municipal Management from York University, a Diploma in Public Administration from Western University, a Master’s in Business Administration, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Statistics.


Mayor Donaldson said that “During his career in public service his experience has been in the delivery of a wide spectrum of financial services. He brings a valued strategic perspective to our important corporate initiatives.”

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Police Searching for Missing Woman
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 (19010 reads)

Members of the Southern Georgian Bay OPP are currently searching for a missing woman from the Waypoint Centre in Penetanguishene.

The missing woman was last seen at 10:20am Oct 14,2014 and failed to return to the hospital in the evening of Oct 14. Investigators believe she may be in the Midland- Barrie area.

Kristine Rawlings is 44 years of age and is described as being a white female, 5' 6" tall, 167 lbs, dark brown long hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing dark clothing. See attached photograph.

Police and hospital officials are asking for the public's assistance in locating the missing woman and would ask that any information be provided to the OPP at 1-888-310-1122 so she may be safely returned to the hospital.

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Small Business Week Kicks Off With Open For Business Expo Next Monday
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 (6161 reads)

The Muskoka Open for Business Expo will be taking place at the Rotary Centre in Bracebridge on October 20th, kicking off Small Business Week.  The expo will feature new businesses that have opened with the assistance of the Business Enterprise Resource Centre, Muskoka Small Business Centre and Muskoka Futures.

The expo will also feature Muskoka Brewery's Gary McMullen and Solterra Co-Housing's Shelly Raymond who will share their success stories.

The expo runs from 1-6pm next Monday at the Rotary Centre for Youth on Wellington St in Bracebridge.  The event is open to the public.

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Ballots Should be Dropped Off At Town Hall After Oct 17th
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 (788 reads)

The Town of Huntsville is advising residents that are eligible to vote that they should have received their ballots in the mail by now.  If you haven’t received a Voting Package for the Municipal Election, or you need to confirm or be added to the Voters List, please contact the Huntsville Town Hall.

The deadline to mail in your Election Return Envelope, is October 17th. After October 17th, Election Return Envelopes should be dropped off at the Town Hall up to 8:00 pm on Election Day - October 27th, 2014.

Town Hall will have extended hours for submitting your Election Return Envelopes and making changes to the voters list on October 15 & 22 from 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm and October 25 from 9:00am to 12:00pm.

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Huntsville Festival Holds AGM
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 (312 reads)

The Huntsville Festival of the Arts will be holding their Annual General Meeting on Saturday October 18 in Partner’s Hall of the Algonquin Theatre.

The meeting will start at 11 am and is open to all members of the community. The meeting will review the artistic and financial results of the past year. A short video, that captures the 2014 season in pictures, will be screened. Board business will include the election of a new Board of  Directors, who will guide the Festival in its upcoming 23rd season’s activities. The meeting is expected to last approximately one hour and will be followed by light refreshments. For further information please contact Festival General Manager Rob Saunders at 705-788-2787.

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Low Cost Rabies Clinic This Weekend
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 (1819 reads)

A walk-in, low-cost rabies clinic is being offered this Saturday, October 18 from 11am to 1pm at The Huntsville Animal Shelter at 19 Bickley Country Drive. The clinic is provided in partnership with Huntsville Animal Shelter, Huntsville Animal Hospital and the Health Unit.   The cost is $20.00 per pet – cash only.

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Committee Week Starts in Huntsville
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 (1600 reads)

Its Committee week at Huntsville Town Hall and today the Public Infrastructure and Protective Services Committee as well the Community Services Committee will meet to wind down their term.  The agenda's are slim with reports from directors about the ongoing operation of the town to be heard, but little in the way of new initiatives.  The PIPS committee starts at 9.30am, followed by Community Services at 1pm.

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Health Unit Warns of Blue-Green Algae Bloom
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 (13266 reads)

The North Bay Parry Sound Health Unit is advises that a bloom of blue-green algae has been detected in three places in 3 area lakes: Cache Lake in West Nipissing, Clear Lake in Perry Township and Lake Talon in Bonfield. Blooms include species with potential of producing algal toxins.

The Health Unit is advising residents and visitors to Cache Lake, Clear Lake and Lake Talon to avoid using the water from the lake for drinking, cooking and bathing. Use another source of water for these purposes.  The health unit says boiling the water or using home water treatment devices will NOT destroy the toxins.

Avoid swimming and other water sport activities that could increase the risk of algae material and toxins contacting your skin or being swallowed.   Avoid using water from the lake for livestock or pets.

The Health unit advises you not to eat the liver, kidneys or other organs of fish caught in the water. Be cautious about eating the other parts of the fish caught in water where blue-green algae blooms occur.

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Dara Gives Back to the Community
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 (6492 reads)

This Saturday, the Muskoka Community Foundation will be awarding grants to 2 amateur female athletes in Muskoka at the ‘Dara’s Women into Sport Fund’. A maximum of $1,000 is available per athlete. Overall, the Foundation will be granting $2,000 from the Fund.

Howell created the ‘Dara’s Women into Sport Fund’ in April 2014 to give back to the community that supported her on her journey to the olympic podium.

Olympic Gold Medalist Senator Nancy Greene Raine will join Dara to present the grants at Dara’s Women into Sport Event, this Saturday, October 18th at the Active Living Centre in Huntsville.  Howell, and Greene, who won a gold medal in the Giant Slalom at the 1968 Olympics in Grenoble, France, will share what it’s like to be an Olympian and discuss how sport has changed in the last 46 years.

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MAHC Appoints New Chief of Nursing
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 (4374 reads)

The MAHC has appointed a new Chief Quality & Nursing Executive replacing the departed Bev McFarlane after she joined another organization.

The MAHC says that Karen Flemming brings with her 22 years of leadership experience in health care, most recently as a Director of Maternal, Child, Youth Programs and Interprofessional Practice at Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre.

Flemming holds a Master’s of Education from Brock University and a degree from the University of Western Ontario.

Flemming assumes the full-time role of Chief Quality & Nursing Executive on October 20.

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