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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

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CBC's Stefano Faita Headlines What's Cooking Bracebridge
Monday, September 29, 2014 (255 reads)

Bracebridge will be hosting a new event called What’s Cooking Bracebridge the weekend of October 3rd and will feature a host of Cookbook authors including TV's Stefano Faita.  The weekend boasts live demonstrations in venues throughout town, including lunches, and a sit down Italian dinner with Faitia.

For more information follow:

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North Words Literary Festival This Weekend
Monday, September 29, 2014 (527 reads)

October 3rd to 5th, sixteen acclaimed, award-winning Canadian Authors bring their talent to Bracebridge for the NorthWords Muskoka Literary Festival. You can meet the authors, learn about their books and their inspiration.

Nipissing University provides the venue for the first two events on Friday, October 3. On Saturday, the Festival moves to the Riverwalk Restaurant.  The Festival comes to an end after breakfast at Bracebridge Library on Sunday.

For event registration and tickets, visit

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Muskoka Studio Tour Starts This Weekend
Friday, September 26, 2014 (1188 reads)

The Muskoka Autumn Studio Tour is continuing its rich legacy of the arts in their 36th year of presenting scores of diversely talented artists in Muskoka. The tour was conceived by one person three decades ago, with the idea of giving people a glimpse into the studios where raw materials are transformed into superb pieces of art.

No less than 19 artists are inviting visitors into their galleries to share their art and the process behind it through discussion, demonstration and display.

This year the tour dates are the weekends of September 27-28, October 4-5.

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Sweater Weather Tour Kicks Off This Weekend
Friday, September 26, 2014 (587 reads)

The Almaguin Highlands is holding its 2nd annual Sweater Weather tour this weekend and the weather will be perfect opportunity for drive to check out the colours and enjoy a special exhibit at the Screaming Heads, or visit take in Tree Ring Record artists performing at the Highlander Brewing Company in South River, or throughout the region.  The area offers lots to do with the Almaguin Arts Council Studio Tour as well.

For more information visit

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Bracebridge Offers Incentives to Promote Development & Economic Growth
Friday, September 26, 2014 (1632 reads)

In order to encourage strong economic growth and sustainable development, the Town of Bracebridge has implemented a series of development incentives to promote new investments in the community.

A primary incentive being implemented by the Town is the elimination of all non-residential development charge fees. Other incentives being made available by the Town include:

• a freeze on 2015 building permit fees to their 2014 rates;

• façade, sign and building improvement grants and interest-free loans through its Community Improvement Plan; and

• rebates of municipal property taxes for significant increases in assessment due to development.

Mayor Graydon Smith said that “Through these decisions, the Town of Bracebridge is sending the message to the development community that Bracebridge is open for business,” he said. “Like all communities in Ontario, Bracebridge is recovering from a significant downturn in the economy and Town Council wants to assist in the recovery by providing incentives that will attract new investment to Bracebridge. We want to encourage new investment and new business ventures that lead to strong economic growth, job creation and sustainable development in the community” he concluded.

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Tell us Who's Leading in the Huntsville Mayor's Race
Friday, September 26, 2014 (2247 reads)

If you are a resident of Huntsville, HBR wants to know what you think about the upcoming mayoral race.  Have you made up your mind on who you will support, and what are the biggest issues for you? Or maybe you are undecided.

Visit our Facebook page to take our quick online survey and let us know what you think.  It’s all completely anonymous and takes less than a minute.  We'll release the results on Oct 3rd.

To take the survey, visit our Facebook page, or follow this link:

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Ballots Hit the Mail Soon - Check to See if You are on the Voters List
Friday, September 26, 2014 (460 reads)

With the first week of mayoral election debates behind us, voters should get ready to receive their mail in ballots which will be sent out starting at the beginning of October.  Registered voters will start seeing the voting package in their mail soon and will be able to vote as soon as they have received it.

But you must be on the voters list in order to cast a ballot.  Residents who are eligible to vote should check to see that they are on the voters list.

Huntsville, Bracebridge, Gravenhurst, Muskoka Lakes and Lake of Bays Twps allow you to check the list online and request to be added to it if you can't find your name on the list.  If you're not on the list, you won't receive a ballot.

Visit the links for each municipality to check to see if you are on the voters list.

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Nominations Extended For Women of Distinction Awards
Friday, September 26, 2014 (910 reads)

The YWCA has extended the nomination deadline for their annual Women of Distinction awards to October 3rd.  This annual evening of celebration honours women who have made outstanding contributions to the Muskoka community in a wide variety of ways. In its 13th year, the gala will take place on the evening of October 29th at the Bracebridge Sportsplex and Rene M. Caisse Theatre and will feature a silent auction and Marche food tasting and spirit sampling in addition to the awards.

In addition Dara Howell and her mom, Dee will be on hand for a fireside chat with those in attendance.

for more information, visit their website at

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Bracebridge Awards Grant to The Great Muskoka Paddling Experience
Thursday, September 25, 2014 (229 reads)

Bracebridge Mayor Graydon Smith presented a $1,500 Event Tourism Grant to the Great Muskoka Paddling Experience for their 2014 event. The event will be held at Annie Williams Park on Saturday, October 11th.

The Great Muskoka Paddling Experience is in its fourth year and draws over 100 paddlers from across the province to Bracebridge during the Thanksgiving long weekend. The past three years have seen a sharp increase in the number of participants, and organizers are optimistic that the trend will continue this year.

“Based on the positive feedback from last year's race and the number of people that have expressed an interest in returning with friends, we are expecting an increase in the number of participants and the number of boats again this year,” says Sandy Schofield, Chair of the event which was the Ontario Marathon Canoe and Kayak Racing Association’s  “Race of the Year” in 2011 and 2012.

 “The Town is very excited to be able to support an event that has been recognized provincially for its success,” explains Bracebridge Mayor Graydon Smith. “All services and materials for the race are sourced locally so it really is a Muskoka-based event.”

The race also gives back to the community, donating the money raised through registration fees to the Muskoka Watershed Council to support their efforts in protecting and promoting the Muskoka River Watershed.

For more information about the Great Muskoka Paddling Experience, visit

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Low Cost Rabies Clinc Coming to Bracebridge
Thursday, September 25, 2014 (3125 reads)

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has arranged for a number of low cost rabies vaccination clinics to be held throughout the County of Simcoe and District of Muskoka. These clinics have been arranged in order to allow dog and

cat owners to have their pets vaccinated at an affordable rate. Pet owners who may not have had their

dog or cat vaccinated recently because of the cost are encouraged to attend one of these low cost clinics.

The clinics are being held in Bracebridge and will take place on:

Saturday, October 25, 2014

10:00a.m. – 2:00p.m.

16 Dominion Street, (Bracebridge Fire Hall)

The cost of each vaccination will be $20.00

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Roads, Hospitals & Education Priorities for Withey
Thursday, September 25, 2014 (4056 reads)

Tim Withey the Brunel Ward councilor running for mayor in Huntsville recapped this past council's record of accomplishments and put together a plan for the future which he said would maintain low taxes, reducing debt and keep G8 infrastructure working for the town.

Withey said that roads would be a priority, and he would use new technology to build roads that would last longer and would handle the severe weather events that are occurring more often.

Withey also said that his experience on the board of the MAHC would position him to ensure that our hospital would remain a fully functional acute care hospital serving the residents of northern Muskoka.

Withey said that he would change the U of W to a facility that would house a variety of post secondary education including colleges and universities that would be for the people of Huntsville, so that they could go to school and work in Huntsville after they graduate.

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Aitchison Says He'll Throw Town Hall Doors Wide Open
Thursday, September 25, 2014 (2575 reads)

Councilor Scott Aitchison, who is also running for Huntsville Mayor said that he has 20 years experience and his goal was to not just be mayor, but be a leader who interacts with the community.  Aitchison said he would listen to the community and act on issues.  He promised to throw the doors of town hall wide open.

Aitchison said he has lots of experience co-chairing various Ontario Games in the past and would spearhead an economic development committee in the district to create jobs so you can support your family.

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Mackenzie Says Huntsville Has Too Much Debt
Thursday, September 25, 2014 (2853 reads)

A full house came to listen to the Huntsville mayoral candidates last night at the Algonquin Theatre. Hugh Mackenzie was the first to speak saying that he thought that there was too much government and too much debt, explaining that he could find efficiencies at the District and cut duplication.  Mackenzie also said that Huntsville's debt combined with its portion of the district debt was $28 million dollars.

He promised to maintain roads and bridges, which he said was let go in the past term and would put together a capital plan that works.

Another concern was the hospital, with Mackenzie saying that we must keep our acute care hospital, but if compromise was needed he could consider a single sited hospital at Port Sydney.

When asked about the town's finances, Mackenzie the town's real deficit when capital assets were added in was $1, 680,000.  He did not elaborate on earlier accusations that town was hiding the true picture of the town's finances.

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Mayor's Golf Tournament Raises $37,000
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 (1317 reads)

The Mayors Golf Tournament was a huge success, raising over $37,000 for charity.  Karin Terziano said that council didn't waste any time, presenting a cheque for $20,000 to the Table Food Bank, who had to access their emergency funds in recent weeks and were warning that they didn't have the money to pay for the last shipment of food.

The town also donated $1500 each to the YWCA and Junior Achievement(pictured).  Another $1500 is slated to support sexual assault services.

A discussion on what the remaining funds could be used for, will take place at the next council meeting.

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Council Approves Gun Club Zoning Change
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 (758 reads)

Huntsville council approved a zoning change on  Gun Club Rd that will allow for light industrial uses including a contractors yard, self storage units, or warehousing on Monday.

The property is vacant land located beside the Gun Club and is essentially a old pit that has been unused for years.

When approving the re-zoning, councilors dis-allowed a transportation business on t he property and also requested that a 40 metre buffer be maintained.

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Harrowsmith Almanac Predicts Milder Winter This Year
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 (2237 reads)

Last week, the Old Farmer’s Almanac predicted that Canada is “looking at the T-Rex of winters,” saying it will be “colder” and “snowier” than last year. Marc Sirois, a long-range forecast specialist with Harrowsmith’s Almanac, says, that he is predicting a milder winter than last year.

Sirois says that by looking at factors ranging from solar activity to ocean currents, as well as years that had similar weather pattern to this year, that he's looking at a bit of a milder than normal pattern.

A cold snap could kick off the season, but will be milder in December.  And Environment Canada's Dave Phillips is onside saying that this winter is not going to be as brutal as last year.

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YWCA Recieves Grant For Senior Women's Programming
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 (71 reads)

The Ontario Seniors’ Secretariat has approved a grant of $10,000 to YWCA Muskoka through the new Seniors Community Grant program. The funding is for projects that help seniors stay connected, active and involved in their community by encouraging greater social inclusion, volunteerism and community engagement.

“Focussing on the needs and interests of senior women has been named by the YWCA’s volunteer board and staff as important for a number of years.” says Hannah Lin, Executive Director. “This funding is like having a door opened to new spaces and ways to enrich the lives and circumstances for senior women in Muskoka” she said.

For further information, please contact YWCA Muskoka at 705-645-9827 or visit

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Huntsville Mayors Debate Tonight
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 (1870 reads)

Hunters Bay Radio along with other local media are presenting the Mayor's All Candidate Meeting tonight at the Algonquin Theatre.  The forum starts with a meet and greet and 6pm, followed by questions of the candidates from residents starting at 7pm.

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MNR Warns of High Water Levels
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (3395 reads)

The Ministry of Natural Resources is advising area residents that water levels and flows in local lakes and rivers are higher than what is normally expected or experienced at this time of year due to the large amount of rainfall received over this past weekend.  Significantly higher amounts of rainfall were received within the watersheds of the North Branch Muskoka River,  Magnetawan River,  South River  & Lower Pickerel River  systems. 

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 closely monitoring the weather and developing watershed conditions. The MNR say further updates will be issued as needed.   

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New Outdoor Gallery in Oxtongue Lake
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (327 reads)

A new outdoor gallery featuring Tom Thompson and The Group of Seven opened to the public earlier this month at Oxtongue Lake.  The exhibit was initiated in early 2013 when community members at Oxtongue Lake came together to inform the public about Tom Thomson, A.J. Casson and The Group of Seven’s connections to the Oxtongue Lake area. 

The Group of Seven and Tom Thomson Outdoor Exhibit is now on permanent display at the Oxtongue Lake Community Centre.

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Chamber Seeking Runners, Zombies & Volunteers
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (2265 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.

Organizers are looking for participants who will run the course and be chased by zombies or participants can join the undead and register as a zombie.

Volunteers are also needed to help with set up, registration, race kits, security, make up and more.

For more info contact the Chamber of Commerce at 705-789-4771

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MAHC Tops in Province For Colorectal Cancer Pathology Reporting
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (1601 reads)

Cancer Care Ontario has recognized Muskoka Algonquin Healthcare as a top performing hospital in the province for the Pathology Post-Surgical Report Turnaround Time for Colorectal Cancer.

Between April 2013 and March 2014, MAHC met the provincial target of completing all post-surgical reports for colorectal cancer within 14 days 100% of the time and MAHC was among the province’s top performing hospitals in turnaround times.

Natalie Bubela, Chief Executive Officer of the MAHC said “I am very proud that we are leaders in the province for this performance indicator. This is a remarkable achievement for our community hospital.".

Pathology is based at the South Muskoka Memorial Hospital Site.

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Korean Free Trade Agreement Good for Muskoka: Clement
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (647 reads)

Parry Sound-Muskoka MP Tony Clement  said yesterday's signing of the Free Trade Agreement between Canada and Korea marks another step forward in securing Canada`s economic prosperity and creating new jobs.

Clement said ``Our Government is focused on creating jobs and opportunities for Canadians in every region of the country, including right here in Parry Sound-Muskoka,`` he said.  ``In these uncertain times, our prosperity depends on our ability to take advantage of economic opportunities in emerging markets such as Korea.``

The Government has launched the most ambitious trade expansion plan in Canadian history. In less than seven years, Canada has concluded free trade agreements with 38 countries and is negotiating with many more.

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Town Warns of Flooded Roads
Tuesday, September 23, 2014 (7638 reads)

Huntsville OPP is warning residents and motorists to be aware of flooding in and around Big East River within in the Town of Huntsville.

Roads that are currently affected include:

- River Cove Drive

- Silver Sands Road

- Trailer Park Drive.

The Huntsville OPP is also concerned with the fast rising water in and around the area of Old North Road.  Residents living in this area should take precaution and it is strongly recommended that they secure their property.

The Town of Huntsville along with the OPP will continue to monitor the affected areas.

Town officials will provide updated information in the morning should conditions deteriorate or if other roads become impacted.

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Animal Sanctuary Seeks Donations for Repairs After Storm
Monday, September 22, 2014 (3500 reads)

The Aspen Valley Wildlife Sanctuary went into its emergency protocol after yesterdays storm washed away part of a coyote enclosure that housed eight orphaned pups.  The Sanctuary is calling for donations to help with repairs to the enclosure and some roads that were also washed out.

Donations can be made on their website

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Council Rubber Stamped Raises for Next Council
Monday, September 22, 2014 (2081 reads)

Council passed a by-law today that rubber stamped pay increases for the mayor and council in the next term of council.  The actual increase was approved in May, but only after halfing the increases that were being proposed.

The original proposal called for a $24,000 increase for the mayor’s salary over 4 years, while councilors were to see a $4000 increase over the same time period, however it was soundly defeated after much discussion around the table.

In the end, council elected to half the increases, with councilors getting $500 increases each year for 4 years, and the mayor getting $3,000 each year for 4 years.

Councilor Withey stopped the proceedings to declare a conflict as he did in the earlier meetings.  All the other candidates voted yes on the by-law, whether they were running in the election or not, with the exception of Councilors Davis & Terziano, who voted against the raise.

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Huntsville Council Approves Deerhurst Village
Monday, September 22, 2014 (10863 reads)

Huntsville Town Council approved an amendment to the official plan that includes an expansion to Deerhurst Resort known as Deerhurst Village this afternoon.

The plan calls for a mix use of commercial, residential, and hospitality uses, phased in over a period of years.  Mayor Doughty told residents in the gallery that the next steps included zoning changes and site plan agreements for each phase as its brought to council for approval in the coming years.

Deerhurst is currently working to build a new Lakeside Lodge replacing the old structure had fallen into decay.  

All councilors voted in favour of the new official plan amendment except for Councilors Davis and Terziano.  Councilor Thompson was absent.

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Deerhurst Village on the Agenda at Huntsville Town Council
Monday, September 22, 2014 (1079 reads)

Huntsville Town Council will be meeting this afternoon and will hear another report on Deerhurst Village with a new secondary plan for the proposed expansion of the resort.

Council is expected to vote on changes that would take in the new expansion  of the resort as part of the towns Official Plan.

Zoning changes and site plan agreements would have to be approved by the town before any construction could begin.

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Huntsville Week Starts Today
Monday, September 22, 2014 (874 reads)

The Town of Huntsville is celebrating Huntsville Week and Culture Days, starting today and running to September 28.  Members of the community can experience free programs, special lectures, activities, clinics and guided tours to celebrate the arts, culture and heritage in addition to celebrating a healthy and active community.

The week is packed full of great programs and activities for all ages at various town facilities including the Active Living Centre, Canada Summit Centre, Algonquin Theatre, Muskoka Heritage Place, the Huntsville Public Library as well as The Culture Station. Most of the programs offered are free of charge but some require a nominal fee.

The town says that there is something for everyone. For a complete schedule please visit

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Gravenhurst Renames Arena in Honour Of Paralympian
Monday, September 22, 2014 (7250 reads)

Graeme Murray said he couldn't have seen a better day than this following the renaming of Gravenhurst's Centennial Centre's arena to the Graeme Murray Arena.  Murray thanked Mayor Donaldson and council along with the people that helped him learn to play hockey including his parents and grandparents.

Graeme said that he was “so proud” to live in the community.

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Sections of Muskoka Still in the Dark
Monday, September 22, 2014 (9651 reads)

Thousands are still without power after a torrential rain storm ripped through the area last night, washing out roads and causing flooding in some parts of the area.  That didn't deter Huntsville Fall Fair goers, who took in the yearly event despite some rides on the midway being under water.

Hydro One says that most people will have their service restored by 4pm today.

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Parry Sound Area Men Win Amazing Race
Monday, September 22, 2014 (23579 reads)

Two Parry Sound area men are the winners in the TV Reality Show Amazing Race Canada which came to a conclusion last night.  The pair who are from Sequin were the first to the finish line in the last segment of the show.  Mickey Henry & Pete Schmaltz said that it’s been a wonderful ride and they were stoked that they could share their journey with their fans.  The pair win $250,000 each, new trucks and gas for life as well as a year of free travel.

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Huntsville Council Expected to Approve Deerhurst Expansion on Monday
Friday, September 19, 2014 (6789 reads)

Huntsville Town Council will be meeting on Monday and will hear another report on Deerhurst Village with a new secondary plan for the proposed expansion of the resort.

Council is expected to vote on changes that would take in the new expansion  of the resort as part of the towns Official Plan.

Zoning changes and site plan agreements would have to be approved by the town before any construction could begin.

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Farmers Almanac Says Fall Will Warm Up and a Colder Winter
Friday, September 19, 2014 (3862 reads)

The Farmer’s Almanac is calling for a bit of a warm up next week and calling for a return to more seasonal temperatures.  October is looking mild with rain and a chance of snow in the middle of the month.

The long term forecast says Winter temperatures and precipitation will be below normal, with the coldest periods in mid-December, early and mid-January, and early to mid-February, with snow fall amounts that could be above normal in some areas.

The Almanc claims an 80% accuracy rate.

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Huntsville Fall Fair Kicks Off Today
Friday, September 19, 2014 (3861 reads)

The Huntsville Fall Fair starts today and runs through Sunday at the Fairgrounds on Ravenscliffe Rd.  The event offers a midway, food vendors, a Western Horse Show on Saturday, live entertainment, baby contests and more!   Admission is just $5 with children accompanied by parents are free.

The Huntsville and District Agricultural Society was founded in 1882, originally under the name of the North Muskoka Agricultural Society.

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MacTier Service Ontario to Temporarily Close
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (340 reads)

The Service Ontario centre at 411 High Street in MacTier will be temporarily closed from Monday, Sept. 22 to Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014, re-opening on Monday, Sept. 29.

Residents who can’t get to a Service Ontario centre in person can access services online at

During the temporary closure, MacTier residents can also visit nearby Service Ontario centres in:

 Parry Sound – 7 Bay Street

 Bracebridge – 15 Dominion Street

 Gravenhurst – 275 Muskoka Road S.

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Gravenhurst Firefigthers to Hold Smoke Alarm Blitz
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (1469 reads)

Gravenhurst will be holding a Smoke Alarm Blitz that will be happening throughout Gravenhurst and area September 29, 30 and Oct 1. Firefighters will be going door to door to offer information about smoke alarms and other fire prevention matters. This year’s nationwide theme during fire prevention week October 5-11, is, “Working smoke alarms save lives- test yours every month”.


“Our primary purpose of the visits is education,” said Chief Larry Brassard. “We will also discuss home escape planning and other fire prevention information and of course answer questions about fire safety in general. We can also check the operation of the alarms, if people invite us into their homes.”


Residents can expect a visit from the local fire department on; Sept 29 – Station 3, Ryde area; Sept 30 – Sta¬tion 2, Kilworthy area; Oct. 1 – Station 1, Gravenhurst core area between the hours of 7pm and 9pm.

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YWCA Urging Residents to Nominate a Woman of Distinction
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (420 reads)

The YWCA of Muskoka is urging members of the community to nominate a woman of distinctions for their upcoming awards to take place on October 29th.  “I think each of us could identify a woman of distinction in our lives if we thought about it,” says Beth Ward, former executive director of the YWCA Muskoka.  “ Someone who has inspired us or led us in the right direction; someone who works to make Muskoka a better place to live through her work, her voice, her creativity…you name it” she said.

The annual evening of celebration honours women who have made outstanding contributions to the Muskoka community in a wide variety of ways.  In this, its 13th year, the gala will take place at the Bracebridge Sportsplex and Rene M. Caisse Theatre and will feature a silent auction, Marche food tasting, and spirit sampling in addition to the awards.

For more information on how to nominate someone for a Woman of Distinction or to register for the gala visit

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Poor Weather Results in Muskoka Sound Posting Small Loss
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (12099 reads)

The Muskoka Sound was a success despite poor weather and lower than expected turnout.   Kelly Haywood, the Chamber's Executive Director said that they recieved positive comments from musicians, concert goers and emergency services that the festival was well organized and has a great organization in place to move forward in the future.

Haywood said that there are a few changes they would consider for next year and had already addressed the volume levels on Friday after complaints from nearby residents over the noise.

She said that she would have liked to see more ticket sales, but that was dictated by weather conditions.

In all, Haywood said the festival lost approx $15,000 this year which represents 3% of the budget, and put it down to unfavourable weather.

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Mackenzie & Aitchison Withdraw from HBR Debate
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (6044 reads)

Huntsville Mayoral Candidates Hugh Mackenzie and Scott Aitchison have bowed out of 2 previously scheduled debates to held live on HBR.  The first one was to be held today, the others on October 2nd & 23rd.  Both Candidates have indicated that they will only participate in the October 2nd debate.

Today we offer an interview with Bracebridge Mayoral Candidates, incumbent Graydon Smith and challenger Phil Kolyn.

The broadcast starts at 11am, on HBR.

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Zanetti Misses 2nd Debate in a Row
Thursday, September 18, 2014 (3552 reads)

Yesterday, less than 100 people attended the two all candidates forums held for District and Ward Councilors to answer questions from the public.

Councilor Zanetti who threw his hat into the ring on Friday, was not present at the Ward forum.   He was not present during the forums in 2010 election that saw him re-elected in Stisted, Stephenson and Port Sydney Wards.

In the District forum, Councilor Terziano explained her reasons for jumping to District from Huntsville Ward, saying that 2/3 of your tax bill goes to District and she says she would look at eliminating duplication to reduce taxes.

John Davis, told residents that he has been on council since 2006 and has sat on 7 committees in the past.  Davis says roads are a priority.   He also wants to eliminate duplication.

Brian Thompson, the only incumbent wants to bring back the Business Retention & expansion program and grow jobs in the area.  Roads, the environment and renewable energy are other planks in his platform.

Nancy Alcock, says that she has been working 25 years for this job and comes with an extensive knowledge and experience in planning, having worked for the province and teaching planning at Ryerson University.  She said she knows she can make a difference.

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Huntsville Debates Tonight
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 (811 reads)

Tonight residents of Huntsville will have an opportunity to listen to Ward & District candidates present their ideas and ask questions of them at the Algonquin Theatre starting at 5pm with a meet and greet. 

The forums begin with District Council at 6pm, followed by Ward Council at 7.30pm.

The Mayoral debates will be held on Sept 23rd at the Train Station by the Huntsville Historical Society and on the 24th at the Algonquin Theatre presented by local media and the Chamber of Commerce.

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Firearms Bylaw Draws Ire in Lake of Bays
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 (4784 reads)

A proposed firearms control bylaw was quickly withdrawn at yesterday's Lake of Bays Council when the gallery was packed with residents who voiced their concern that the bylaw was too restrictive.  Councilors one by one said that the setbacks from roadways and acreage needed to lawfully discharge a firearm should be sent back to staff for more work.  Councilors also asked that controls on bows be removed from the bylaw before it comes back. 

Staff said the bylaw was attempting to control the discharge of any gun in community zones and control where a gun could be discharged in rural zones and only outside of hunting season.

The mayor apologized to residents for upsetting them after sending the bylaw back to staff and promising more consultation before anything is passed.

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Lots of Free Programs During Huntsville Week
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 (10727 reads)

The Town of Huntsville is inviting the community to participate in Huntsville Week and Culture Days, running September 22-28.

Huntsville week is an opportunity for the community to experience programs, special lectures, activities, clinics and guided tours to celebrate the arts, culture and heritage in addition to celebrating a healthy and active community.

The week is packed full of great programs and activities for all ages at various town facilities including the Active Living Centre, Canada Summit Centre, Algonquin Theatre, Muskoka Heritage Place, the Huntsville Public Library as well as The Culture Station. Most of the programs offered are free of charge but some require a nominal fee.

The town says that there is something for everyone. For a complete schedule please visit

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Muskokans Benefit by EI Payroll Tax Reductions: Clement
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 (1605 reads)

Local job creators are being given a boost by the Government, said MP Tony Clement, as the Small Business Job Credit announced last week will reduce EI payroll taxes by nearly 15% in the next two years.

Clement said that``Small businesses are the backbone of the Parry Sound-Muskoka economy. Our entrepreneurs work hard to create, sustain and grow their businesses. This payroll tax reduction will make room for them to grow, and to create job opportunities in communities across the region.``

Almost 90% of all EI premium-paying businesses in Canada will receive the credit. According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses, small- and medium-sized businesses employ 70% of the total private sector workforce in Canada.

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Watershed Council Warns of Aliens Amongst Us
Wednesday, September 17, 2014 (1238 reads)

The Muskoka Watershed Council are asking if you are prepared for the Aliens amongst us at a lecture being held at the Waterloo Summit Centre in Huntsville on September 25th.

Dr. Andrea Smith says that Invasive species are considered one of the greatest threats to biodiversity globally, and can have profound negative effects on the economy and society as well. Yet, compared with other major environmental problems, like climate change and pollution, invasive species have garnered relatively little public and political attention.

This talk will provide an overview of the invasive species situation in Canada by reviewing major threats and challenges, and will examine how well we are addressing the problem through legislation, public awareness and stewardship tools.

The lecture is $15 and for more info or to register, visit

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Huntsville Debate Tomorrow
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 (2763 reads)

Tomorrow residents of Huntsville will have an opportunity to listen to Ward & District candidates present their ideas and ask questions of them at the Algonquin Theatre starting at 5pm with a meet and greet. 

The forums begin with District Council at 6pm, followed by Ward Council at 7.30pm.

The Mayoral debates will be held on Sept 23rd at the Train Station by the Huntsville Historical Society and on the 24th at the Algonquin Theatre presented by local media and the Chamber of Commerce.

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Huntsville's Terry Fox Run Raises Nearly $10,000
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 (2272 reads)

About 300 runners took part in Huntsville's Terry Fox Run on Sunday and have raised nearly $10,000 for the event.  The run is one of several in the region and across the country.  The run is in its 34th year with Terry's parents spearheading the run in his memory.  Fox once said that "Even if I don't finish, we need others to continue.  It's got to keep going without me."

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Fitzgerald Running in Port Sydney
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 (749 reads)

Jason Fitzgerald has entered the race for Stisted, Stephenson and Port Sydney wards in the upcoming municipal election.  Fitzgerald says he's running because he feels he has something to offer the people in his ward as a councilor.

Fitzgerald is an active member of the Stephenson Lions Club and resident of Port Sydney for the past 6 years.  Fitzgerald says that there are numerous challenges facing council  and his project management experience will be an asset.

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LOB to Hear First Impressions of Dorset at Council Meeting
Monday, September 15, 2014 (1257 reads)

Lake of Bays Council meets tomorrow for their regularly scheduled meeting and will recieve a deputation from a delegation from a Magnetawan group who are participating in the First Impressions Community Exchange Program.

The group which includes a Magnetawan councilor, Real Estate sales person, Newspaper editor and economic developement officer will advise council of their first impression of the village of Dorset.

The group will advise on Dorset's strengths and biggest challenges.

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Lots of Chances to See Huntsville Debates
Monday, September 15, 2014 (10504 reads)

You’ll have plenty of chances to hear from your council and mayoral candidates with the first of several mayoral debates taking place tonight at Diamond in the Ruff at 6.30pm.  Wednesday, an all candidates forum takes place at The Algonquin Theatre at 7pm.

The Huntsville Lake of Bays Sports Council will be holding another all candidates forum on Sept 18th, also at the Algonquin Theatre at 7pm.

Huntsville mayoral candidates will be debating for the Huntsville Historical Society at the train station on Sept 23rd, and then on the 24th at the Algonquin Theatre.  They will also debate on the radio on HBR on October 2nd.

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Zanetti Changes Mind to Run at the Last Minute
Monday, September 15, 2014 (5672 reads)

Stisted, Stephenson & Port Sydney Councilor Chris Zanetti has thrown his hat into the ring at the last minute after telling the press that he didn’t plan to run in this municipal election.  Zanetti said that when he was sitting at Corporate Services last Wednesday, that he realized that he enjoyed chairing that committee and leading the town in a fiscally responsible manner.  He said “I believe I can continue and would enjoy leading Council in that fashion.”

Also in the race is Karen Insley, who says she is running to protect the ward system which she says was brought into question in the last year.  She says being accountable to the people Council represents through the use of planning, assets, and Official Plan development is key.  Prioritizing projects will be both a challenge and an opportunity she says.

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LOB's Mayor Bob Young Acclaimed
Friday, September 12, 2014 (986 reads)

Lake of Bays Mayor Bob Young has been re-elected by acclimation, as well as District Councilor Shane Baker and Mclean Ward councilor  Terry Glover.  Other wards have 2 people contesting for each seat at the council table.

In Ridout/Mclean ward for  District, incumbent Robert Lacroix is being challenged by Howard Rosenthal.  In Franklin Ward,  incumbent Nancy Tapley is  being challenged by Brent Statten and in Sinclair ward Ruth Ross will be talking on Henry McClelland.

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Bracebridge's Graydon Smith Has a Challenger
Friday, September 12, 2014 (7237 reads)

Bracebirdge has a mayoral race on its hands after Phil Kolyn filed to run against incumbent Graydon Smith. 

Six candidates are competing for 3 Districts councilor positions including John Duck, Joey Baratto, Steven Clement, Don Smith, Lori-Lynn Giaschi-Pacini and Ian Wallace.

Bracebridge Ward has 3 fighting for one spot.  Leonard Chilton, Chris Wilson and Mike jefford hope  to be elected.  In Muskoka/Monck Ward Mark Quemby has been acclaimed.

Incumbent Rick Maloney is being challenged by Cam Hoffman in Macaulay Ward,  and Archie Buie is going up against Gerry Tryon in Draper Ward.  Oakley Ward will see Barb McMurray competing with Rosemary Ramsay.

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Final Slate of Huntsville Candidates
Friday, September 12, 2014 (5154 reads)

The deadline has  passed for new candidates to file to run in the next municipal election scheduled for October 27th.  In Huntsville, a few new candidates have declared.

In Port Sydney, Stisted, and Stephenson wards, Jason Fitzgerald, Karen A. Insley, and sitting councilor Chris Zanetti have joined Gordon Haig and incumbent Det Schumacher who declared earlier.  The Ward will elect 2 councilors.

The mayor's race includes former mayor Hugh Mackenzie, current councilors Scott Aitchison and Tim Withey.

Huntsville Ward has two new candidates fighting for one position.  They include John Boysen and Bob Stone.

Wanda Lumley and Jonathan Wiebe  are fighting for one spot currently occupied by John Davis.  Davis is contesting for one of three district councilor positions.  Also running for district is newcomer Nancy Alcock, and town councilor Karin Terziano.  District councilor Brian Thompson rounds out the race.  In total 4 people are running for 3 spots.

There's also a big race for Port Sydney, Stisted & Stephenson ward, with 2 to be elected.  Both incumbents Det Shcumacher and Chris Zanetti are running, along with challengers, Jason Fitzgerald, Gordon Haig, and Karen  Insley.

Brunel ward has 3 running to fill a spot vacated by Tim Withey who's running for mayor.  Former Councilor George Young is joined by Dan Armour and Sue Ashley.

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Classic Car Show Downtown Saturday
Friday, September 12, 2014 (2518 reads)

Huntsville will be busy over the weekend, with Muskoka Sound at Lions Lookout and the Classic Car Show on Saturday downtown.  Portions of Main St will be closed for the car show on Saturday.  On Sunday the Terry Fox Run will be held at the High School at a new earlier time - 9.30am with registration at 8.30am.

No parking zones will be signed and enforced around the High School with a tag and tow policy in effect.  Designated parking for Muskoka Sound will be at the Huntsville Fairgrounds, with a shuttle service running between the parking area and the Muskoka Sound Venue.

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McPhee, MCN Part Ways
Friday, September 12, 2014 (499 reads)

Muskoka Community Network, the agency that has been behind the roll out of High Speed Internet is some areas of Muskoka have parted ways with its Executive Director, Rob Mcphee.  Officials with the organization say that Mcphee's contract was not renewed.

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Deadline to File Nomination Papers 2pm Today
Friday, September 12, 2014 (270 reads)

The deadline to file nomination papers is quickly approaching.  All candidates who want to run in this municipal election must file their papers by 2pm today.  The election will be held on October 27th by mail in ballots in most municipalities in the area.  Voters are encouraged to check to see that they are on the voters list before ballot packages are mailed out.  Contact your municipality to check to see if you are eligible.

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Muskoka Sound Starts Tonight
Friday, September 12, 2014 (1771 reads)

The Stages have all been set.  The area around Lions Lookout Field has all been fenced and secured. Muskoka Sound Music Festival, the biggest 3 day festival in the area is about to get underway.  And it all starts tonight at 5.30pm.

The festival is expecting thousands to take in the 3 day music fest that includes 19 national acts on the big stage,  and 14 locals acts sponsored by HBR on the Homegrown stage.

Tickets are still available online today at

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MNR Warns About High Water Levels
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (2650 reads)

The Ministry of Natural Resources is reporting that water levels and flows in local lakes and rivers are currently higher than what is normally expected or experienced at this time of year due to the large amount of rainfall received over the previous 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.

Higher than normal lake water levels and river flows are expected to continue into next week before subsiding to more seasonal conditions.

The warning is in place for Muskoka and Moon Rivers, The Magnetawan River, The Seguin River, Lower Pickerel River, Black River & Boyne Rivers.

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Aitchison Challenges HBR Story
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (11869 reads)

Huntsville mayoral candidate Scott Aitchison has challenged Hunters Bay Radio's  story where we reported that he said mayoral candidate Hugh Mackenzie was lying.  Aitchison says that he did not say "suggesting or lying" as we reported but rather "suggesting are lying."

Aitchison says he never said that Mackenzie is lying, and instead said that "I said that he (Mackenzie) is suggesting our staff is lying. "

Aitchison said that there is a significant difference in the meaning of what I said and what HBR reported. The full comments made by Aitchison and follow up comments from Mackenzie can be found here:

Aitchison Offended By Mackenzie's Assertions on Town Finances

Mackenzie Claims Aitchison is Misstating the Facts

You can also listen to the full interview with Scott Aitchison, go to our Facebook page.

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Huntsville Corporate Services Approves $21,000 on a Fuel Control System
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (4002 reads)

The Corporate Services Committee had an extended discussion on whether the Town of Huntsville should spend $21,000 on a fuel control system at the Madill Yard.  Staff told councilors that they had 3 different refilling stations, but were recommending that the Madill Yard be equipped with a control system that would track which employee refilled which vehicle.  The information would be used to help the town better understand usage and control any loss.

Councilor Terziano asked if there was a problem and Councilor Zanetti answered that there was the potential for a problem.  He also indicated that the town had 2 other refill sites that wouldn't have the system, which is $21,000 per site.

Councilor Thompson urged councilors to leave the purchase for next year’s council as it was unbudgeted.  Council Aitchison said that fuel was the 2nd biggest expense at this former employer and was supportive of the system.

Council voted to purchase the system for the Madill Yard and would look at options for further control for other town vehicles.

Public Works spent $228,000 on fuel last year.


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Withey Challenges Automatic 2% Increase in Fees
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (1695 reads)

Huntsville Town Staff are working on starting to put together a status quo budget, including user fees for geomatic services that were proposed to go up by 2%.  Councilor Withey challenged staff that if they were working on a status quo budget, asking why is there a 2% increase built in.

The 2015 capital roads budget will be brought forward at the next committee meeting.  The committee will discuss each set of budgets as they are presented, but will leave any instructions for staff to the next council.

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LOB Offers Voter Assistance Sessions
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (174 reads)

Lake of Bays Twp is reminding residents to check to see that you are on the voters list in order to receive a vote by mail ballot for the upcoming municipal election.  You can check to see if you are on the voters list at

In addition, The Township of Lake of Bays Clerk’s Department will be available to assist you after normal business hours on

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Dorset Recreation Centre

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2014

6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Dwight Community Centre

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Baysville Community Centre

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Watershed Council Offer Researcher for a Day Cruise
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (1517 reads)

The Muskoka Watershed Council is inviting residents to become a "Researcher for a Day."  Tomorrow, September 12th, you can join other participants aboard the Peerless II with Dr. Norman Yan and Sunset Cruises.  Participants will learn to make their own zooplankton net and learn about the living lawn mowers in our lakes while collecting and examining samples on a cruise of Lake Rosseau.

The cruise leaves the Port Carling Docks at 9.45am tomorrow and returns at 11.45am.  Tickets are $50.  For tickets, contact the Watershed council at

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Enterprising Women Conference October 7th
Thursday, September 11, 2014 (302 reads)

Women entrepreneurs will be in the spotlight at the upcoming Enterprising Women conference happening on Tuesday, October 7 at Nipissing University in Bracebridge.

The conference’s keynote speaker will be Heather Payne, CEO of HackerYou and founder of Ladies Learning Code.

In the afternoon, participants will have the opportunity to meet with successful women entrepreneurs from Muskoka who have leveraged the strengths of Muskoka. Topics include how local markets and community events help promote business, the importance of networking, and how local agencies like Muskoka Futures or Chambers of Commerce can help sustain and grow businesses.

Interested women can register online at or call 705-645-9827.

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Muskoka Sound Call For Volunteers Today & Tomorrow
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 (6326 reads)

The Muskoka Sound Festival is calling out for volunteers to help set and tear down the event.  Organizers are on site now and need help setting up fencing today and tomorrow.

You can head out to Lions Lookout Field or call the chamber for more information at 705-789-4771.

Day passes to the show are being offered as a thank you.

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Huntsville to Hold 2nd Closed Session Meeting on McCulley Roberston Park Acquisition
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 (1668 reads)

Huntsville Town Council will hold its second special council meeting this week, in closed session to reconsider a potential acquisition involving McCulley Robertson Recreation Park.   A previous closed session meeting was held yesterday.  The details of which are unknown.

Today council will reconsider its actions of yesterday.

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Huntsville's Corporate Services To Discuss User Fees
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 (1064 reads)

Huntsville's Corporate Services Committee meets today and will hear reports on User Fees for town services.  The councilors will also hear a report from staff on Property Tax Assessment Write-offs as well as reports on the Building Canada Fund for small communities and the Ontario Community Infrastructure Fund.

The meeting starts at 1pm in Huntsville Council Chambers.

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Special Weather Statement Calls For Downpours
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 (20439 reads)

The weatherman has issued a Special Weather Statement calling for thunderstorms with very heavy downpours and gusty winds possible this afternoon and into tonight.

An early fall type of low pressure system over Iowa will track northeastward towards the Great Lakes today. This moisture laden low is expected to drag a fairly sharp cold front across Southern Ontario tonight. Thunderstorms with very heavy downpours and gusty winds will be possible late today and tonight and could give local rainfall amounts near 40 mm.

The cold front will sweep out the moisture laden air mass by Thursday morning and considerably cooler air will arrive in its wake.

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Table Food Bank in Need of Donations
Wednesday, September 10, 2014 (3098 reads)

The Table Food Bank is dipping into their emergency funds and is desperately in need of cash donations to help fill the shelves.  Heather Berg says that the food bank continues to feed  10.3% of the nearby population and financial help has been sparse this year.

Donations can be dropped off at the Table Food Bank or donated online via credit card or paypal at their  site,

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