Woodstock Ingersoll Echo - 07-05-24

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Woodstock Ingersoll Echo

County receives homelessness prevention funding


Oxford County’s funding allotment from Ontario’s Homelessness Prevention Program (OHPP) increased by $1.22 million last year, bringing total funds received from the province to $2.3 million. Of that, approximately $2.6 million was transferred to community partners who provide supports and services to people at risk of or experiencing homelessness.

Warden Marcus Ryan said they are very appreciative of the province for the additional funding, but much more needs to be done as the number of homeless people continues to increase.

“Anyone who lives or drives in Oxford County will know, especially now that the nice weather has come, people are trying to escape situations they don’t want to be in and don’t have a choice in February but have one now. There are more encampments.”

Ryan added 86 per cent of the OHPP money flows to partners like Operation Sharing, the Inn in Woodstock, community health services and those providing mental health and addiction services. He said that is the most effective way to help those in need.


The National Anthem sung


integrity commissioner resigns


The Town of Ingersoll’s integrity commissioner and closed meeting investigator has resigned due to workload issues.

In a news release from the town, it acknowledges and appreciates the contributions Robert Swayze has made during his tenure. In the interim, John Mascarin has been appointed as acting integrity commissioner.

“The process of appointing a new integrity commissioner is underway, and the town is committed to ensuring investigations continue smoothly and without interruption. Under the Municipal Act, an integrity commissioner must be appointed to serve the town council, town staff,

and the public with the respective parties' questions or concerns,” the release said.

The Gazette reached out to the town’s clerk, Danielle Richard, for more information regarding current investigations.

“Complaints are submitted to the attention of the integrity commissioner, who, upon receipt, determines if the matter has merit per the code of conduct which will determine if it will be investigated. The integrity commissioner will conduct their investigation and the outcome and recommendations will be considered at a council meeting.”

She added until the report is made public, the town will not comment on the status of any investigation, nor are staff typically aware of that status.

by STAGES Kids. See more coverage on page 2.

Canada Day in Woodstock Boundary adjustment public meetings held by Woodstock and Norwich

The City of Woodstock and Township of Norwich held two public meetings on Thursday, June 27 to share more information about the proposed boundary adjustment between the communities.

Property owners heard from city, township and Oxford County staff about the lands under consideration, the reasons for the boundary adjustment and how municipal taxes, services and by-laws would change.

“A boundary adjustment is a significant undertaking and this is an important process to plan for the future of both of our communities,” said David Creery, Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Woodstock. “We want to reassure property owners that this is not an expropriation. Land use does not change as a result of a boundary adjustment.”

During the meetings, the public had the opportunity to ask questions and share their concerns about future development of the land and the financial impacts to property owners.

“The Township and the City are taking this matter very seriously and we are here to listen. No decisions

have been made yet. We encourage residents to continue to share their feedback so that our Councils can make an informed decision,” said Lee Robinson, Chief Administrative Officer for Township of Norwich.

Written comments can be submitted until Aug. 2, 2024. Comments can be sent to clerksinfo@cityofwoodstock.ca or karmstrong@norwich.ca and must include your name and address. Anonymous comments will not be accepted.

The feedback and details of the final proposal will be presented in a report at the following meetings:

• Norwich Township Council — Aug. 13, 2024

• City of Woodstock Council — Aug. 15, 2024

• Oxford County Council — Sept. 11, 2024

The draft proposal must be approved by all three councils before it can be submitted to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for their approval.

More information including the presentation from the meeting can be found online at www.cityofwoodstock.ca or www.norwich.ca.

Southside Park hosted a huge party on the holiday Monday for celebrations and events. The park was filled with fun for all ages, showcasing live music, a Canadian Kids Zone, a marketplace and food vendors. As always, the evening ended on a bang with spectacular fireworks show.

Always a treat, Face Painting for the young From the Northern Fire Circus was Luna Blaze, lighting up the stage
Feeding time for the animals

Ontario presents two retailer awards to local grocers

Oxford MPP Ernie Hardeman has recognized two county grocery stores with Foodland Ontario Awards.

Blake Sharpe and Foodland Ingersoll has received a Gold Award for building creative produce displays that drive sales of local Ontario produce and demonstrate an exceptional commitment to Ontario’s local food industry.

Sharpe said he and his team were thrilled to win.

“We’ve never won one of the gold ones before and those are the top 12 in the province, so we are pretty happy with that.”

He added much of the credit goes to the hard-working employees at the store.

“They’re great. I have a really good and dependable staff here. We’re not the biggest store in the world but we make it work. Everyone tries their best.”

Sharpe explained the store has won silver awards in the past for promoting local foods during the growing season, but the gold is another level altogether.

“There are top four creative, top four cross-merchandise and top four local displays so we won for creative for our peach display last year. We made a big Bowser’s castle from Mario Brothers.”

Hardeman said displays like the one at Foodland in Ingersoll highlight the quality of locally grown items in Oxford and area.

“It’s great to recognize our local retailers for supporting area farmers by displaying the wide variety of fruits and vegetables they produce,” said Hardeman. “It’s displays like these that show how easy it is to access quality, homegrown, local pro -


the gold award to Ingersoll Foodland

manager Blake Sharpe and owner Chris Macdonald.


For more than 35 years, the annual Foodland Ontario Retailer Awards have recognized the creative talent of retail managers

Ingersoll’s integrity commissioner resigns

“Any investigation that was active at the time of Mr. Swayze's resignation would be assumed by the interim commissioner. To source a new integrity commissioner, staff will be bringing forward a report for Council consideration detailing options under the town's procurement policy.”

Swayze has been in the commissioner’s role for several Ontario municipalities including the City of Mississauga where he also resigned last year citing workload issues. A story in the Mississauga News from March 8, 2023, said “he’s the integrity commissioner in 30 other municipalities and the most active is Mississauga and has requested to be relieved of his duties.” His tenure in Mississauga wasn’t without controversy. The story goes on to say his resignation followed controversy around his treatment of allegations that a councillor vandalized a colleague’s vehicle. Swayze initially declined to investigate the allegations and after one of the councillors went public, he eventually did and the offending elected official had their pay suspended for 60 days.

Swayze is or has been an integrity commissioner for Belleville, Stratford, Carleton Place and Oxford County, just to

name a few.

Richard explained the town is committed to ensuring the public continues to have access to an accountability officer who acts as the town's commissioner.

“This obligation is taken very seriously which is why the Town moved swiftly to accept Mr. Swayze's resignation and appoint an interim accountability officer.”

Any questions from the public should be directed to Richard at danielle.richard@ ingersoll.ca.

and staff who build eye-catching promotional displays to promote Ontario grown and in-season fruits and vegetables.

This year, 63 Foodland Ontario Retailer Awards are being presented to 60 grocery stores across the province to celebrate excellence in retail display and promotion in support of local Ontario foods.

John and Wendy Cameron, owners of Sobeys Tillsonburg received a Foodland Ontario Silver Award.

“Congratulations to all the winners of the 2023 Foodland Ontario Retailer Awards,” said Rob Flack, Minister of Farming, Agriculture and Agribusiness.

“Our local grocery stores play a pivotal role in getting Ontario-grown food from farm to fork. By creating eye-catching instore displays that celebrate fresh, locally grown produce, grocery stores are helping shoppers identify and purchase Ontario products and support Ontario farmers.”

For more than 45 years, Foodland Ontario has connected with families on how to recognize, prepare and enjoy locally grown foods. Ontario has one of the most diverse agriculture and food industries in Canada, producing more than 200 commodities, including asparagus, berries, tender fruit, apples, greenhouse tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers and so many more. To know when all your local fruits and vegetables are in season, visit Foodland Ontario’s Availability Guide at https://www.ontario.ca/foodland/page/ availability-guide.

MPP Ernie Hardeman presents
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Oxford County calling for more provincial supports to combat mental illness and drug abuse

“County council has received many reports and we have had many robust debates including (last week’s) council meeting. If you get more money but don’t know if you are spending it in the right way, it doesn’t necessarily help.”

A large part of the debate at the meeting was about the OHPP funding but Ryan said only 25 per cent of those living in encampments are looking for or willing to consider a housing option if offered to them.

“To you or I that might seem bizarre. How can you be living in a tent in a valley and not want a home if it is offered to you. In a lot of cases, there are inadequately addressed mental health or substance abuse issues and people are saying I’m not ready for a home,” said Ryan. He added municipal governments are not set up to provide those supports but the provincial ministry of health is. Ryan said the county needs to see more from Doug Ford’s government.

“The funding we receive is good and welcomed, but flowing it out to our community partners, it’s only going to go so far. If we send someone to the Inn in Woodstock to talk to a person in the emergency shelter and it’s recognized

they need more mental health supports but we don’t have anywhere to send them, all we have done is identify an issue but have done nothing to resolve it.”

Ryan added each level of government needs to do what it is supposed to do and do it well but the county spends more than what the provincial and federal governments spend combined on affordable, transitional and supportive housing in Oxford.

“We are more than doing our part for the housing portfolio which is our responsibility. We need the provincial government to do the same in healthcare. We will be talking to them to say we need you to do more to help us. If we provide a transitional house for somebody but the mental health and substance abuse supports aren’t there, we can only move them on so far if they don’t have those supports. The province needs to, more effectively for Oxford residents, address mental health and substance abuse misuse issues.”

Punkeydoodles Corners construction set to begin Oxford County Council has approved a $1.08 million construction contract for intersection improvements at Punkeydoodles Corners.

The move fulfills the recommendations of the Intersection Control Feasibility Study released in October 2023. It addressed community concerns in the area, a section of roadway bordering Oxford County, Perth County, Wilmot Township and Region of Waterloo.

The scope of work for this project, which is planned for July to November of this year, includes several safety measures including adding a new south -

bound left turn lane, northbound right turn lane, and deceleration lanes along the curve on Perth Road 101. It will also realign Road 101A at Perth Road 101 to improve sightlines and add lighting at the intersection of Road 101A and Perth Road 101.

Oxford warden Marcus Ryan said all councils involved agreed the plan is the best way forward to make improvements for residents and motorists.

“That was based on engineering analysis, best practices, and evidence-based decision-making about what is the safest solution for that intersection for now and for the foreseeable future.”

Many area residents are steadfast in their belief an intersection is the best way to slow down traffic in the area which has seen the number of vehicles increase recently. Some also feel speed reduction would help in the event a roundabout wasn’t approved. Maximum speed through the area will remain at 80 km/h.

“We heard from lots of residents about lots of things they wanted, which is good, but council is confident the solution we have chosen to move forward is going to be the one that is going to be safe for residents,” he added.



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Woodstock artists awarded public art commission to commemorate Florence Carlyle

Two Woodstock artists have been chosen to create a sculpture in honour of historic painter Florence Carlyle.

Duane and Urszula Kumala-Thomas were awarded the public art commission for the City of Woodstock. Their sculpture, BIRD SET FREE, was selected by the public art committee from a shortlist of four proposals.

Inspired by Carlyle’s nickname, “Bird,” the artwork combines three components — a bird, a birdcage and a corset — and explores the theme of confinement and freedom, reflecting on Carlyle’s life and the evolving societal norms of her time.

The husband-and-wife artist team, who live in Woodstock and co-own a local photography and framing studio, have a unique personal connection to Carlyle.

“This project holds a special place in

our hearts. Beyond the significance of celebrating Florence Carlyle’s legacy in our community, as parents of two, we have had the honour of raising our family in the same home Carlyle grew up in,” said Duane Kumala-Thomas.

The Woodstock Art Gallery launched the public art commission in May 2023 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Carlyle’s death.

“BIRD SET FREE is a fitting tribute to Florence Carlyle’s accomplishments as a trailblazing female artist. I’d like to extend my sincere congratulations to Duane and Urszula and thank the members of the public art committee who made this thoughtful selection,” said Mary Reid, Director/Curator of the Woodstock Art Gallery.

The sculpture is expected to be installed in Florence Carlyle Park by 2025. More information can be found at www.cityofwoodstock.ca/publicart.

The project is funded in part by the Government of Canada.

Zorra Township council meets in new chambers

get down to business in these chambers.”


Mayor Marcus Ryan called to order the first meeting in the township’s new municipal office in Thamesford on June 19.

“The first council meeting in a building other than the one that we occupied for the first 49 and a half years of Zorra’s conscious existence,” Ryan highlighted. He added the intention is to keep council meetings accessible and transparent, but warned there may be technical issues as they proceed.

“So, with that, the best thing to do is

New parking policy being explored after safety issues in front of TDRC Township staff will be reviewing its traffic calming policy after concerns were raised about one of the exits at the Thamesford District Recreation Centre.

A new traffic calming policy was just enacted in March, restricting parking in front of the TDRC on Middleton Street within nine metres of all three entrances for safety reasons, but according to a report prepared by Don MacLeod, the township’s chief administrative officer, staff have expressed concern about vehicles parked even nine metres away.

On at least one occasion, two large pickup trucks had parked on the edge of the parking zone, making it difficult for staff pulling out of the complex to see oncoming traffic. MacLeod recommended prohibiting all parking in front of the TDRC.

Councillor Katie Grigg explained the nine-metre setback for the location was not arbitrary and was based on metrics. It is also used at other intersections raising concerns about whether a nine-metre setback was different from other intersections or if Zorra should be re-evaluating the policy.

MacLeod explained the entrance to the arena is unique and more narrow than other intersections without two full lanes in and out which makes a significant difference to sight lines. He is not aware of any other issues related to a nine-metre setback at any other intersection in the

A letter was signed by all staff members using the exit regularly, expressing health and safety concerns about the impact of a vehicle parked right on the edge of the zone. It added if council reduced the parking to a 15-metre setback, it would be beneficial to staff and patrons.

“Of course, we want to make sure sightlines are clear,” said Grigg. “We want to make sure we have safety entering and exiting. But from this report alone, I didn't feel like there was enough information to justify why this intersection should be treated differently.”

Council amended the motion to file the CAO report and requested staff to review the traffic calming policy for proposed amendments and explore a new parking-related policy.

County Road 6 accidents a concern

After noticing an increase in collisions at a Zorra intersection, Wayne Noble, who has been in the trucking industry for over 40 years, delegated to the township looking for answers.

A longtime resident, Noble said in the last year alone he has seen five accidents at County Road 6 and Tollgate Sideroad, otherwise known as Line 37 and Road 74.

“Effects are felt throughout the area when an accident does happen,” Noble said. “I’ve placed a call to the township and the reply I got the first time was well this is a county problem because the accidents are on the county roads.”

Noble said the intersection is two-fifths township and three-fifths county and he went to Frank Gross, manager of transportation and waste management at Oxford County, who indicated that the county is looking into the problem.

Noble advised putting flashing lights warning of stop signs at the intersection and rumble strips on Road 74 or converting the intersection to a roundabout, although he acknowledged that would be costly.

“We don't need another accident like we had last year with a school bus,” Noble said. “We don't need to see any more deaths.”

After the delegation, Councillor Kevin Stewart said traffic issues are not isolated to this one location.

“Overall, we’re seeing an increase in east and west traffic. You're asking for some solutions to one location, but I don't think it's isolated. And that's the issue we need to consider carefully in every circumstance here. The data does suggest there's a lot of accidents in that one location, but it's happening in quite a few other locations as well.”

Councillor Crystal Finch echoed Stewart’s remarks, saying they need to make the right decisions for all residents although it comes down to a money and funding question for these roads.

“We don’t have a big enough pocket to

fix this ourselves,” she said.

Noble again said something as simple as a stop sign with flashing lights would benefit the intersection, inquiring about whether Perth County, which has put up several similar signs on its roads.

During his delegation, Noble submitted a four-second video which he said was taken from a truck cab and showed him approaching an intersection with flashing lights, demonstrating how effective that setup is.

Noble asserted that the video was taken from a camera in the truck, something Ryan found hard to believe.

“I find this incredibly challenging, frankly, to take your delegation seriously. When you submitted a video of you using a handheld device while driving a vehicle of how we should do things to make people less distracted while driving.”

Finch advised Noble to approach Oxford County since the intersection is controlled by them.

Zorra councillor Kevin Steward named to new joint police services board

Councillor Kevin Stewart has been appointed to the Oxford Rural Detachment Joint Board, a new police services board involving all second-tier municipalities in the county.

“I'm excited to try this out,” Stewart said. “I think the challenge to me seems like because it's new it's going to come with some learning for everyone involved. And I think that's going to be important to maintain efficiency in that process rather than sort of spinning in circles.”

In March 2019, the Ontario government passed the Community Safety and Policing Act, intended to modernize policing in Ontario.

As a result, all OPP police boards were dissolved to create one and in 2021 Zorra Township supported the approval for the Townships of Blandford-Blenheim, East Zorra-Tavistock, Norwich, South-West Oxford and Zorra, and for Tillsonburg and Ingersoll to form their own board.

The board will have seven membersone elected official from each of the partnering townships, one provincial member and one community appointee.

Ryan wondered if it would be possible for Zorra and other member municipalities to track costs associated with this new board since it is provincially mandated and will burden the tax base. There will be expenses related to meeting remuneration and mileage, administration, and training. Total costs are unknown.

“I'm not suggesting the province would ever pay this bill,” Ryan said. “But I would certainly be willing to go to the solicitor general and say by the way, here's the bill for the extra thing that you make us do now. I think we should at least attempt to have that conversation.”

CONNOR LUCZKA Echo Correspondent

Rural Oxford EDC teams up with Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show on new exhibit

Rural Oxford Economic Development Corporation has joined Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show (COFS) to create a Discover Rural Oxford exhibit.

“The exhibit will bring local fare to an international stage, said Rural Oxford EDC Economic Development Officer Crystal van Roekel.

The exhibit is an exciting initiative set to debut at Canada's Outdoor Farm Show, the country's premier agricultural event. The exhibit aims to spotlight the vibrant entrepreneurial landscape of Rural Oxford.

The Discover Rural Oxford tent will host four distinct Rural Oxford businesses each of the show’s three days. Those businesses selected will then have the opportunity to showcase their products and offer visitors an interactive experience, allowing them to taste, touch, or try locally sourced goods firsthand.

“The vendors will have the opportunity to sell their products directly on-site, giving rural businesses access to a larger market stage,” explained van Roekel.

“By providing a platform for Rural

Oxford businesses to engage with a diverse audience of local and international visitors, Discover Rural Oxford promotes economic growth within the region and fosters connections between producers and consumers in the agricultural community,” she added.

This innovative market-style approach promises to unlock new opportunities for Rural Oxford's entrepreneurial ecosystem while enriching the overall experience of attendees at Canada's Outdoor Farm Show. Participants will benefit from the exposure at the 3-day event and be included in an extensive marketing campaign through Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show and Rural Oxford EDC channels.

“We couldn’t be more thrilled to add a new dimension to our event which attracts over 36,000 visitors,” explained Carol Carson, COFS Sponsorship and Partnership Lead.

“12 Rural Oxford business participants will benefit from being showcased

alongside a diverse array of businesses spanning the agriculture sector at the show. We highlight not just agriculture but also manufacturing, technology, tourism, and agrifood enterprises, many of which hail from Southwestern Ontario,” she added.

“We look forward to bringing this exhibit to such a staple event in our community and being able to champion our Rural Oxford businesses on this platform,” said van Roekel.

For over 30 years, Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show has been bringing together visitors and exhibitors from across Canada and beyond, to showcase the newest and most innovative products and technology in agriculture. It takes place on September 10, 11 and 12, 2024.

Participating businesses will have use of the booth at no charge and van Roekel said it will be a wonderful opportunity for them to new markets.

"By showcasing these businesses at the Farm Show, which attracts a large

and diverse audience, the project provides an opportunity for Rural Oxford businesses to access a wider market that they may not have been able to reach otherwise in a short amount of time.”

She added a dedicated social media campaign spotlighting the participating businesses will amplify visibility across various platforms.

“This concerted effort maximizes exposure for the businesses, reaching a broader audience and generating increased interest in their products and services.”

She added the rural Oxford businesses have the chance to network with other vendors, industry professionals, and attendees, fostering connections that can lead to future collaborations and opportunities for growth.

Rural Oxford businesses that are interested in applying for this program can find the application form here https://ruraloxford.ca/discover/.

Only businesses located in a Rural Oxford Township are eligible and preference will be given to those who meet program eligibility. This year’s Outdoor Farm Show occurs on September 10, 11 and 12.

County announces new planning director

Oxford County has a new director of community planning. CAO Ben Addley has announced the appointment of Paul Michiels as Director of Community Planning, effective July 1.

Michiels has 30 years of progressive community planning experience, most of which has been with Oxford’s Community Planning Office. He began his career with Oxford as a Development Planner, during which time he provided planning advice and direction and development review services for many of the area municipalities in the County. He later moved into a Senior Policy Planner role and in 2010 accepted the role of Manager of Planning Policy, where he led the County’s planning policy team and oversaw various County-wide planning initiatives, including Official Plan reviews, growth studies, and source protection planning, while also guiding the County and area municipalities through numerous provincial legislative and policy changes.

Addley said Michiels will play a key role in an important and constantly changing department.

“Over the past few years, a number of significant legislative changes, combined

with Oxford having one of the fastest growth rates in Ontario, has heightened the focus on how we grow our communities. Paul has been a key part of our provincial advocacy, how we work with our neighbouring municipalities to do this, and how County Council is briefed to make fundamental decisions about growth.”

He added having worked closely with Michiels over the last couple of years, his passion for excellence in community planning and his extensive knowledge of the County’s varied communities and interests will serve the residents of Oxford well as we continue to plan together for our future.

In assuming the leadership of Oxford’s Community Planning Office, Michiels will lead a team of 20 professional planners and technical and administrative support staff. The community planning office provides a full range of land use planning services for the County and all eight area municipalities.

It oversees the review of all Planning Act and development applications, official plan and zoning by-law development and updates as well as undertaking planning-related special projects and studies. The team also maintains various land use-related data, mapping and other resources.

Michiels said as he steps into the director role his priority is to continue to provide strong direction and leadership for the county’s planning team.

“I also want to strengthen relationships with our area municipalities and other community stakeholders so that we can continue to work together to ensure Oxford and its communities remain vibrant and sustainable. With the many recent

provincial changes and significant growth the County is experiencing, there is much that will need to be done to achieve that vision and I look forward to the challenge.”

Oxford is one of the fastest-growing municipalities in Ontario, annually processing roughly 500 development applications and undertaking numerous planning-related studies and other initiatives.

Woodstock Ingersoll Echo is a bi-weekly newspaper available both in print format and online (theecho.ca)

Published every other Friday, our next editions are: Friday, July 19, 2024, Friday, August 2, 2024, Friday, August 16, 2024

Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Oxford County has named Paul Michiels as Director of Community Planning

Big Brother burger beating mental health stigma

Warning: This article contains mentions of suicide

Ingersoll-based mobile eatery That Food Truck’s latest addition to the menu honours their son’s legacy and creates conversations about mental health and suicide prevention.

That Food Truck’s Big Brother burger is a double-patty cheeseburger with lettuce, onions, pickles, and the food truck’s secret sauce. It was launched in memory of Brayden Danahy, son of Anthony Pinheiro and stepson of Juanita Keddy, co-owners of That Food Truck after Danahy died by suicide in mid-May. There’s also a single patty version called the Little Brother burger.

"When he would come down to the truck, he used to make something very similar,” Keddy said. “His dad and I just thought it seemed fitting."

Proceeds from both the Big Brother and Little Brother burgers will go towards the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council, as Danahy lived in Waterloo. The non-profit offers free support services for people contemplating suicide, who know someone who is, and survivors of suicide loss.

Since launching the burgers, That Food Truck’s story has received shout-outs on social media and reached news outlets such as CBC, the London Free Press, and CTV News London. All That Food

Truck’s social media posts about the burger will tag Danahy’s mom Kimberly Petersen, so she can see the support as well. Keddy said that there are lots of people coming to the food truck, from regulars checking in to newcomers sharing how touched they are by the cause.

“There's days where it's exhausting and in a good way,” Keddy said. “But it's exhausting, but everybody at the truck has a story. Every single person."

A professor who attempted suicide twice drove to Ingersoll from the GTA after hearing about the Big Brother Food truck on CBC, and he gave Keddy and Pinheiro hugs, handshakes, and bought a fundraising burger and pop for $100 towards the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council. A mother brought her 13-year-old daughter contemplating suicide so Keddy could offer support.

A few parents showed up to the truck and talked about losing their children to suicide. A man was unable to talk about his son but he now does after starting to come to That Food Truck.

“He comes in every single day to tell me a random fact about his son because that makes him feel better,” Keddy said. Although there’s been an outpouring of support, the truck has also received some backlash. Keddy said a group of people told the food truck staff they shouldn’t be “promoting” suicide, even though she corrected them and said the mandate is to raise awareness on prevention. The next day, another man came up to the food truck, apologized, and donated money to the cause.

just didn't want to do that."

“He wanted to give a donation and let me know that not everybody are jerks,” Keddy said. “So, you know, it kind of balances it out. But like I said to Kim, they may be talking about how bad we are for promoting this, but they're still talking.'"

Petersen, who is in Northern Ontario, isn’t directly involved with That Food Truck itself but said she received lots of support when she and the rest of the family shared the obituary for her son. Many told her they appreciated the cause of death was mentioned.

“When it is a suicide, they don't actually say the cause of death,” she said. “They usually say died suddenly and we

Along with raising money for the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council, That Food Truck also points to the 9-8-8 suicide crisis phone number, which is available across Canada and the United States for free. Petersen said that none of her 12 kids, including Danahy, knew about the 9-8-8 number nor did she and no one at his memorial knew.

"If we can drive that home and just save just one person, then Brayden's death was not in vain and that's important to us,” Petersen said.

That Food Truck is located at the Canadian Tire Parking lot on 98 Mutual Street South, Ingersoll.

If you’re struggling and need help, call or text 9-8-8.

Echo Correspondent
(Left to right) Brayden Danahy’s family including stepdad Ian Petersen, mom Kimberly Petersen, stepmom Juanita Keddy, dad Anthony Pinheiro, brothers Talon, Kameren, Aaron, niece Ivy, and siblings Karissa, Amaryn, Tovah, Hudson, and Logen. Keddy and Pinheiro launched the Big Brother burger for That Food Truck, raising money for the Waterloo Region Suicide Prevention Council in memory of Danahy.

Business funding organization celebrates Entrepreneur Awards

Three Oxford County businesses were honoured at the Community Futures Oxford annual general meeting held in Woodstock at county council chambers.

Matthew Bannon of Macnab Transit Sales Corp – Access to Capital Program Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner.

Based in Ingersoll with a 35,000 square foot facility, Macnab’s commitment to providing top-notch services is evident in their inventory, ability to modernize vehicles to new standards and help offered in navigating the complexities of buying and selling buses.

Kelsey Streef of Willow Grove Animal Wellness Centre Inc. – Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award winner.

Willow Grove, located in Princeton is a full-service animal wellness centre catering to cats and dogs.

Her 7500 square foot state-of-the-art facility provides qualified and licensed professional care for animals through integrative medicine, boarding and daycare services."

Huron Park Secondary School Sustainability Project – Community Economic Development Project of the Year Award Winner.

More than 300 students participated in this project, funded in part by Community Futures Oxford. Based on seven of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, students identified ways to improve sustainability in the school and local community. Elementary students were also invited to attend and learn about the projects. Winning projects received implementation funding.

“Each year, we are impressed to witness, and contribute to, the growth of a vibrant Oxford County


Circle K

Thamesford Variety

JC Graphics

Tim Hortons


Embro Food Market

Kintore Coffee Co.

Highland Restaurant

Embro Hub - Fuel & Coffee


Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons



Woodstock Ford Sales

Woodstock Toyota

Gord Anderson Automotive

Anderson KIA

Woodstock Nissan

Woodstock Home Bldg Centre

Zehrs Woodstock

Civic Centre Arena

Woodstock Ag Society


Jesse's Breakfast

Coffee Culture

Rosso Barber-o Shop

Shoppers Drug Mart

City of Woodstock

Beantown Coffee

Dino's Dining Lounge

Union Burger

Royal Canadian Legion

Woodstock YMCA

Food Basics

Goodwill Community Store

Tim Hortons

Quesada Burritos

McDonald's Restaurant

Woodstock Hyundai

Honda Woodstock

Dubois Mazda

Woodstock Jeep

Peavey Mart

Haight's Garden Centre

Tim Hortons

Early Bird Coffee


McDonald's Restaurant

Canadian Tire Service Dept

Scott's No Frills

Holiday Inn Express

Days Inn by Wyndham

Tim Hortons

economy, evident in the creative and resilient businesses we are pleased to support,” said Allan Simm, the organization’s general manager.

With support from the Government of Canada, Community Futures Oxford provides support to grow the Oxford County regional economy.

“Small businesses are at the heart of our economy and vital to our community. We are here to ensure these businesses have access to the right tools and support needed to succeed,” added Simm.

Since its inception, the organization has handed out $24,896,264 in loans and equity to 426 businesses that were starting or growing in the community.

“This directly impacted 3,319 jobs. Since 1993, Community Futures Oxford has awarded 381 grants totaling $1,359,408,” he explained.

Pick Up Locations

Quality Hotel & Suites

Best Western Plus

Pharmasave Woodstock General Hospital

Lobby, Woodstock General Hospital

Reeves Community Complex

South Gate Centre

Daisy Mart


Beachville Museum


Riverside Minimarket

Canadian Tire

Ingersoll Karate

Tim Hortons


McFarland Rowlands


Miss Ingersoll

The Olde Bakery Café

Kraft Korner

Hometown Style

Ingersoll Public Library

Town of Ingersoll

Ingersoll 50+ Centre

Tremblett's Independent


Tim Hortons

Home Building Centre

King's Variety

Elm Hurst Inn


Louie's Pizza & Pasta

The Evergreen Coffee Lounge

Shoppers Drug Mart

Matthew Bannon from Macnab Transit Sales receives the Access to Capital Program Entrepreneur of the Year Award from Allan Simm
Kelsey Streef from Willow Grove Animal Wellness Centre is given the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award from Allan Simm
Huron Park Secondary School was awarded the Community Economic Development Project of the Year Award. Pictured are Teachers Lindsay McLaren, left, and Sarah Stephenson accept the award on behalf of the school

Woodstock man donates blood for the 200th time

About 60 years ago Bill Kruis was walking in his local mall in North Brantford when a couple of women sitting at a table called him over and asked him to give blood.

They must have had an impression because even now, at the age of 79, Kruis is still donating blood and just gave blood for the 200th time on June 28.

“I’m not 100 per cent sure of when I started,” Kruis said from the donation chair at Goff Hall in Woodstock. An attendant from Canadian Blood Services had just administered the needle and blood began to travel up the tube and into a bag. He didn’t seem to notice. “But I do know I started after I got my licence and I got it the exact minute Kennedy was shot.”

Kruis has lived a full life since then. He quit school in grade seven, electing to stay home and work on the family farm. When he was 35, he started driving professionally, hauling chickens and turkeys – something he still does today.

About 10 years ago, Kruis moved to Woodstock from Etobicoke after being laid off and finding new employment.

“You gotta keep active,” Kruis said. “I enjoy it.”

It's a similar story for Kruis when asked why he still gives blood all these years later.

“It’s O-negative, which is the top choice of blood,” Kruis explained. “And you do

Toronto Police have charged a 14-yearold Toronto teen with two counts of first-degree murder and seven counts of attempted murder.

Police say a stolen pickup truck collided with an empty parked vehicle on June 3, and a suspect was arrested after a short foot pursuit.

After further investigation, officers determined the young offender was involved in the shooting.

61-year-old Delroy "George" Parkes died in hospital after shots were fired in a North Albion Collegiate Institute parking

things because they’re good and you feel good to help somebody.”

The attendant looking after Kruis interjected, saying that each time anyone gives blood three people are helped. Someone

will receive the blood’s platelets, plasma, and red blood cells.

Doing the math, it stands to reason that Kruis has helped 600 Canadians with his donations, a feat that he is proud of. It is

Woodstock Police briefs

lot shortly before 11:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 2.

Police say a group of men had gathered in the park ing lot after a soccer game when a dark pickup truck pulled up. Two suspects got out of the truck and shot at the men, before hopping back in the vehicle and taking off.

Officers found five people suffering from gunshot wounds when they arrived on the scene. A second victim died in hospital.

Two city women charged in drug busts

A pair of Woodstock women have been arrested following drug trafficking investigations.

On Saturday, June 15, the Woodstock Police Service Criminal Intelligence and Drug Enforcement Unit conducted a drug trafficking investigation. A 37-year-old woman was arrested and police seized suspected fentanyl and methamphetamine with an approximate street value of $1500 and Canadian currency.

The accused faces two charges of possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of proceeds of property obtained by crime under $5000.

On Friday, June 14, police arrested a 36-year-old woman. They seized suspected fentanyl with an approximate street value of $7520 and $1700 in Canadian currency.

rare for someone to give blood 200 times since blood can only be given every 56 days.

Renée Horton, communications lead at Canadian Blood Services, said in an emailed statement to the Echo that Bill’s accomplishment takes dedication to achieve.

The organization doesn’t have an exact number of people who have achieved that milestone, although she indicated many donors in Canada share the distinction with Kruis.

“Every donation is significant. Whether it's a first donation or Bill's 200th,” Horton said. “Each one has the power to save a life. For example, a person living with leukemia may need blood from up to eight donors every week. We need more dedicated donors like Bill to ensure hospitals remain stocked with life essentials for patients over the long weekend and throughout the summer.”

For anyone unsure about donating blood, Kruis said that they should at least try.

“Don’t feel bad if you can’t because of circumstances. But if you can, try to. There are a lot of people dying, waiting for your blood.”

For his 200th donation, Kruis’ son Jim joined him, giving blood for the 42nd time. He said giving blood was always something his dad did. His father set a good precedent for him, but when asked if he thinks he will ever get up to 200 as well, Jim was doubtful.

“Oh no,” Jim laughed.

Police say she is in custody and faces one count of possession of an opioid for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of proceeds of property obtained by crime under $5000.


A 48-year-old is facing impaired driving charges after blowing nearly four times over the legal limit.

On Thursday, June 20 at approximately 11:30 a.m., the Woodstock Police Service responded to reports of an individual driving impaired in the area of College Avenue. At approximately 11:45 a.m., police located the vehicle in a driveway, running with the accused sitting in the driver’s seat. Open alcohol bottles were located inside.

Police say the driver provided a breath sample nearly four times the legal limit.

The Woodstock Police Service is appreciative of the diligent community members reporting suspected impaired drivers and wants to remind motorists that impaired driving kills.

Support businesses that keep your community and its newspaper thriving
CONNOR LUCZKA Echo Correspondent
“This is what 200 looks like,” a Canadian Blood Services attendant exclaimed, as Bill Kruis donated blood for the 200th time at the Goff Hall in Woodstock on June 28.

This year marked the version of the event, held in Embro on July 1st. As the oldest Scottish games in Ontario, it celebrates Embro's Scottish heritage. Attendees enjoyed a full display of Scottish traditions including

Embro Highland Games

competitive Highland Dancing, pipe bands, piping competitions, Tug of War and thrilling heavy events. It was a family-friendly day featuring Scottish livestock, agility dogs and the much-loved Scottish dog pa-

rade. Visitors had the chance to indulge in traditional Scottish fare at the tearoom or partake in Scottish-themed crafts and activities for children. Adults could explore vendors, savor the offerings of fabulous food

trucks, and enjoy local craft beers and distilled drinks at the fully licensed grounds while relaxing to live music from the Celtic band The Steel City Rovers and the beloved local duo, The Paddystones.

The Seann Triubhas took part in competitive Highland Dancing
The Tug of War Competition is always a fan favourite
Ingersoll Pipe Band preparing for their event.
Visiting the Tartan Display were Robert McKim and Wanda Harris
Clans MacDougall and MacDowall with Valerie and Scott MacDougald

Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency visits Oxford County

Oxford County recently welcomed visitors from Atlantic Canada to showcase Oxford’s excellence in tourism. The Culinary Tourism Alliance organized the trip to bring representatives of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency to Oxford for a best practices mission.

Representatives from Tourism Newfoundland and Labrador, Tourism PEI, Hospitality Newfoundland & Labrador, Taste of Nova Scotia, and the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency came to Oxford for two days before heading to the Niagara Region. Tourism operators who aspire to grow culinary and agritourism in their home provinces from Atlantic Canada were also on hand.

Tourism Oxford’s Meredith Maywood and Joanne Wolnik from Ontario’s Southwest led the tour, sharing insights into how Oxford County and Ontario’s Southwest work together to support destination development in Oxford County and showcasing some of the unique and mouth-watering culinary tourism destinations in Oxford County. The group visited local tourism attractions that have won multiple local, regional and provincial awards for experiential tourism in Udderly Ridiculous Farm Life, Ottercreek Woodworks and sixthirtynine. The group stayed at the Elmhurst Inn and Spa in Ingersoll.

Oxford County also hosted a best practices mission in July of 2023, welcoming visitors from Flanders, Belgium. The representatives from Flanders came to Oxford to learn best practices, product development and experiential tourism from Tourism Oxford and local tourism operators as part of a visit to Oxford County, Prince Edward County and the Niagara Region.

cultural immersion unlike any other, this voyage

the heart and the highlights

Oxford County recently hosted representatives of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency to Oxford for a best practices mission.

On June 22 and 23, the Woodstock Fairgrounds hosted an incredible dog festival complete with well-behaved owners. This free, family and dog-friendly event supports pet rescue initiatives and increases awareness of the struggles faced by abandoned and abused animals in Canada.

Over 1000 dachshunds gathered for the event that catered to dachshund enthusiasts and all dog lovers. This year's lineup included various fun activities such as

the beloved Dachshund Races, costume contests, and professional photo sessions with the Wienermobile. Vendors from local areas and across North America set up booths offering a range of products like animal dietary supplements, apparel, leashes, pet services, and handmade crafts. Many local and nationally known businesses, serving as sponsors, were also present. Additionally, visitors had a variety of food options provided by local charities and food trucks.

Scott and Gina Maywood with Piper and Winnie took in the events
James and Sue Poulet with their dogs who were cooling off on a hot day

Woodstock Ingersoll Echo SPORTS

Carly Brintnell

Sales Representative

Cell: 519 - 635- 8640

Office: 519 - 539 - 2070

Email: carlybrintnell@royallepage.ca

Website: carlybrintnell.royallepage.ca

757 Dundas St. Woodstock, ON N4S 1E8

Woodstock U18 girls take silver in major tournament


The Robbie has donated to Cystic Fibrosis Canada to support life-extending research, treatment and education for those living with CF.

In 1967, a group of soccer enthusiasts met in John Wimbs’ Scarborough, Ontario, living room to organize a small soccer festival. From upstairs they heard three-year-old Robbie receiving treatment for cystic fibrosis. In that moment, the organizers decided to dedicate the event not just to soccer, but to fighting cystic fibrosis. The Robbie was born. Cystic fibrosis is the most common fatal genetic disease affecting Canadian children and young adults. There is no cure, yet. Funds donated by The Robbie support cutting-edge research through the Robbie Award for Most Promising

Area of New Research.

When Robbie was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis in the 1960s, he was not expected to live long enough to attend kindergarten. Much has changed, Canadians with cystic fibrosis are now living longer, healthier lives than ever before, but CF is still ultimately fatal. Last year, half of Canadians who died of cystic fibrosis were under the age of 33. However, fundraising events like The Robbie, make an enormous difference. As of 2017, the estimated median age of survival for Canadians with cystic fibrosis is among the highest in the world, at 52.3 years of age.

Robbie lived with cystic fibrosis until he was 33, he lives on in the festival and tournament he inspired.


Ask the Arborist

Dear Arborist,

I have a very large Willow tree, I know you are not supposed to top trees, but I am wondering if there is a way to make it smaller. It is a mess. Also, there are these little shiny blue bugs and they bite. I don’t like bugs.


I Don’t Like Bugs,

Dear I Don’t Like Bugs,, I don’t like those little bugs either. The shiny blue bugs are called Willow Leaf Beetle. While they make the Willow tree unsightly and cause damage, they are rarely fatal to the tree. Normally, we would not recommend topping a tree. However, Willow trees are

the exception to the rule. Once you do top a Willow it will need to be done every so many years. Topping removes any branches that are at risk of falling, as well as dead wood. Topping the tree will likely solve your insect problem as well (as you might assume from their name, these beetles like leaves.) So, if you remove a significant amount of leaves, it should mostly eradicate this invasive insect.


The Arborist

Joel Hackett is a certified Arborist residing in the St. Marys area. Currently, he spends most of the year running Joel’s Tree Service. For contact call 519 272 5742 or email jtsquote@gmail.com

The Woodstock FC U18 girls left everything on the field in an electrifying match, narrowly missing victory with a 1-0 loss to Liverpool Mississauga in The Robbie soccer tournament finals. They hit the crossbar and came inches away from scoring on a corner kick before it was barely cleared from the line. Congratulations on a well-played tournament.

Sports Standings





Ingersoll strawberry supper

On Friday, June 21st, St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church in Ingersoll opened its doors to the community by hosting what is becoming its annual Strawberry Supper. It’s that wonderful time of year when they truly appreciate the bounty of the season, and local strawberries are certainly one of them. Rev. Allan Brouwer, the pastor at St. Paul’s, shared that this has been a huge team effort for the church. They have had members picking the strawberries, washing and preparing them, setting up the tables, and also selling tickets. There’s great joy in working together as a team to put on such an event. It was also wonderful to see people inviting their friends and neighbors, buying tickets to say thank you to someone who has helped them out and gathering to enjoy that sense of community over a great meal. Rev. Brouwer said that this is one of the goals of St. Paul’s in offering these types of events. “We want to create a place where people can come and enjoy a lovely meal and the spirit of hospitality and community.”

Piping in the strawberries were Piper Nancy Matthews and Laurie McCarney
Organizing and serving the meals were Terry McKibbin, Meg Walden, Laurie McCarney, Rev. Al Brouwer, Nancy Matthews, Barb Riley, Kathy Smit and Hawkings Imagine your team in a fantastic 3,359 sq. ft. o ce space located o Parkinson Road on Universal Road, near Welford Place.

Route to the Past – Early Hollywood Has Oxford Connections

Most of us are familiar with the likes of Jim Carrey, John Candy and Mike Myers and know that they are all Canadians who have loomed large on the silver screen. But do you remember the likes of Walter Pidgeon, Ruby Keeler, Raymond Massey and Mack Sennett?

While the first three were Canadian actors, Sennett was an early movie mogul who perfected the art of cinematic comedy. In fact, he was coined “The King of Comedy”. Sennett’s production house excelled at comedies, especially the Keystone Cops -that bumbling police force that travelled the streets of America amidst death-defying antics and stunts in hot pursuit of hapless criminals.

Sennett’s slapstick humour was the schtick that helped launch the careers of many early comedians and comediennes.

When movies first started, they were all silent films. Flash cards of script appeared on the screen, and an organist or pianist in the movie house provided live musical accompaniment.

At the beginning of the 1900s, young men and women, and in many cases mere boys and girls were drawn from Canada to the United States, attracted to the motion picture industry.

By 1908 motion pictures were emerging as a form of mass entertainment. At that time there were seven major motion picture companies centred around New York City. All were producing silent movies that were generally twenty minutes in length. The success of the early motion picture shows by the likes of Thomas Edison had spawned the construction of movie theatres

across North America. The Capitol in Woodstock was one such example. The Mason or Maitland Theatre on King Street West in Ingersoll was another example, but which has now been converted into a variety store.

Most Canadian actors began their careers in the Big Apple. Then, around 1910, film makers moved to the west coast to take advantage of the Californian winters. One, Canadian Al Christie, was the first to build a permanent movie studio in Hollywood. Alfred Christie and his brother Charles were both born in London Ontario, but their parents were from Ingersoll. Their father George, a police officer, is buried in the Ingersoll Rural Cemetery.

Many actors became stars during the early 20th Century heyday of cinema, but they quickly and often tragically fell out of favour with the advent of “The Talkies”. Their voices were simply not what people expected or imagined from their leading man or lady.

Besides Mack Sennett and the Christie Brothers, certain other Canadians played a major role in the development of this fledgling industry, especially people like “America’s Sweetheart” --- Toronto-born Mary Pickford. Not only was she the highest paid actress of her day, but she and her dashing husband Douglas Fairbanks along with English immigrant Charlie Chaplin, formed their own production company United Artists.

Besides Pickford, several other Canadian cinematic pioneers achieved enormous wealth and worldwide fame including the co-founder of MGM Studios, Louis B. Mayer from Saint John New Brunswick, and London Ontario born Jack Warner of Warner

Brothers fame. They were, in their day, among the most powerful personalities in Hollywood. Occasionally, movies are based on best-selling novels. One example was the 1937 RKO Pictures production of “Jalna” that was inspired by the world-famous book of the same name written by Canadian Mazo de la Roche while she lived in Clarkson Ontario (present-day Mississauga). Benares Historic House

in that city is said to have been the inspiration for Jalna. In that same year, another novel was turned into a feature film.

“The Prisoner of Zenda” was written by Anthony Hope in the late 1800s. Residents of Salem Ontario were looking for a new name for their hamlet and a local farmer suggested Zenda because of his fondness for the book, making this the only place in the world to be called Zenda. In 1937,

motion picture producer David O. Selznick invited the twelve residents of Zenda to be flown to New York City as guest of honour for the world premier of “The Prisoner of Zenda” which starred Ronald Colman in the lead but included Toronto born Raymond Massey as the villain. Two other residents of the hamlet were unable to attend the movie because they were the local cheesemakers! Not to be outdone, a large wheel of their own cheese was flown to New York and presented to Mayor La Guardia

From time-to-time American producers were willing to make a movie about Canada, but in almost each one our country was portrayed as a rural backwater populated by moose, Mounties and mad trappers!

Early efforts to establish a film industry in Canada met with little success. Canadian-produced feature films were few and far between; they simply could not compete with those from the United States, Britain, and France. Canadian theatre owners were quite content to show these “foreign” films because they were cheap to rent. Likewise in the 1940s, Canadian distributors like Oscar Hansen of Toronto-based Sterling Films inspired a fidelity to these flicks by giving away such incentives as bone china to Canadian audiences. Many Canadians, like the aforementioned Carrey, Candy and Meyers and Tommy Douglas’ grandson Keifer Sutherland, have found fame and fortune in Hollywood. But it was those early cinematic pioneers who travelled south when Hollywood was still in its infancy that have made a lasting impact both on the screen and behind the camera on what became the shape and future of the motion picture industry.

Notice of the passing of Development Charge By-Law

TAKE NOTICE that the Council of the County of Oxford passed development charge by-law No. 6639-2024 on the 12th day of June, 2024, under section 2 (1) of the Development Charges Act, 1997, S.O., 1997 c. 27, as amended;

AND TAKE NOTICE that any person or organization may appeal to the Local Planning Tribunal under section 14 of the Act, in respect of the development charge by-law, by filing with the Clerk on or before the 22nd of July, 2024, a notice of appeal setting out the objection to the by-law and the reasons supporting the objection.

The charges in the aforementioned by-law will apply to all new residential and non-residential development, subject to certain terms, conditions and limited exemptions as identified therein.

County-wide development charges are levied against new development to pay for the increased capital costs related to the provision of such municipal services as library, ambulance services, growth-related studies, waste diversion, long-term care and services related to a highway. Schedule 1 sets out the development charge rates applicable throughout the County.

Area-specific development charges related to the provision of water and wastewater servicing apply to the specified areas of Woodstock, Tillsonburg, Ingersoll, Plattsville, Drumbo, Tavistock, Innerkip, Norwich, Thamesford, Embro and Mt. Elgin. All area-specific charges are listed in Schedule 2.

Key maps are not set out in this notice as the details and scale of such maps would be difficult to reproduce in an accurate and legible form. Map schedules for each applicable service area are attached to the by-law on the County’s website.

The development charges imposed under the bylaw, which came into effect on June 13, 2024, are calculated and payable on the date of building permit issuance.

Copies of the complete development charge by-law are available for examination during regular business hours (weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) in the offices of the County located at 21 Reeve Street, Woodstock, and on the website at www.oxfordcounty.ca

For further information, please contact the Clerk’s Office at 519-539-0015, ext. 3001.

Chloe J. Senior County Clerk, Oxford County clerksoffice@oxfordcounty.ca 21 Reeve Street, P.O. Box 1614 Woodstock, Ontario N4S 7Y3

Schedule 1 – County-wide Development Charge

Schedule 2 – Area-Specific Development Charge

Woodingford Lodge Antique Car Show

On June 25th, Woodingford Lodge in Woodstock hosted an Antique Car Show and BBQ for its residents, families and guests. The event featured entertainment by the band 1962 who performed songs from the 60s, delighting all who attended. Woodingford Lodge is a municipally owned and

homes in Oxford County.

Residents, families, and friends looking over some of the cars on display
Jude and Nancy Dolson and Errol Peters enjoying the event with residents Opal and Doug Dolson Ron Williams and Cindy McMaster of the band 1962 entertained attendees

Bruinsma receives legacy scholarship from Woodstock Art Gallery

Recent Ingersoll District Collegiate Institute graduate Emily Bruinsma was surprised to win the 2024 Friends of Woodstock Art Gallery Legacy Scholarship.

The $1,000 award is given to a graduating high school student from Oxford County pursuing post-secondary education in a fine art or media art program such as graphic design, painting, sculpture, photography, digital art, and/or fibre arts. The recent high school graduate received the award during the Woodstock Art Gallery Open House on June 8.

“I wasn't expecting it,” Bruinsma said. “I just did it because art is what I'm going into and I just have a passion for it so much, but I wasn't really expecting to win."

Bruinsma will be attending Western University in the fall to pursue her undergraduate degree in studio arts. She plans to eventually attend Teacher’s College and become an art teacher.

She always knew she wanted to pursue a creative career over a desk job, but it was only a recent realization that she would like to go into teaching. She mentored Grade Nine students for her peer mentoring class, and she had a co-op as a teaching assistant for a Grade five and six class at Laurie Hawkins Public School.

“Once I started immersing myself in teaching aspects in my school and through classes,” Bruinsma said. “I kind of found a passion for it and it just takes two things that I love so much and put them into a dream job."

Bruinsma enjoys graphite and pencil drawings and prefers to focus on realism instead of abstract art.

"I like seeing things like the way that they are, especially with my drawings,” she said and added her parents supported her throughout her journey as an artist, having a craft room in the house and encouraging her to draw, colour, and create. Bruinsma is also grateful for the support she received from her art teacher Ms.



$1,000. The


"I knew I always liked art,” she said. “But then once I got into her class and she helped me and taught me the fundamentals of art, I really grew as a person and enjoyed it so much more. I feel like she has been a major influence."

Bruinsma said that her supporters helped shape her into who she is today, and she is now more outgoing through expressing herself through her artwork.

“It's gotten me out of my shell, I think. I don't think I would've ever been able to do an interview like this without their help. This is just a huge thank you to them."

Her artwork is located at www.instagram.com/emilybruinsma_art.

“I know the paper is free, but can I get a subscription anyways?”

Yes. We understand that some people might like the convenience of the Woodstock Ingersoll Echo arriving at their home (located near or far) through Canada Post, so we do have subscriptions available for this purpose. The price for a subscription is $52 plus GST = $54.60. To subscribe, please e-transfer granthavenmedia@gmail.com and include your full mailing address in the comments, or send a cheque with mailing address to Grant Haven Media, PO Box 2310, St. Marys, ON N4X1A2

Emily Bruinsma, a
graduate of Ingersoll District Collegiate Institute, received the Friends of the Woodstock Art Gallery Legacy Scholarship award worth
scholarship will help Bruinsma during her studies at Western University as she pursues the studio arts program.

OH, THE PLACES WE’LL GO: Fresh lobster, thump mats, mummers and a linguistic lesson

Every visitor to Petty Harbour – well, every Canadian music lover, at least – wants to know which of the houses in the Newfoundland coastal community was home to Alan Doyle.

Every guide and every local resident will point to the white and green house.

But if that’s all you come to Petty Harbour for, you are missing a terrific day in a charming and vibrant community. There is actually a surprising amount of choice in a community of less than 1,000 inhabitants – everything from hiking and zip-lining to shopping and heading out on an ocean excursion.

My time in Petty Harbour was divided between a sea

voyage and eating, and then shopping in a venerable gift store, and eating, and making a thump mat out of a lengthy piece of rope – and eating.

Petty Harbour is home to a nonprofit social enterprise called Fishing for Success, headquartered right on the water in the Island Rooms of Petty Harbour.

These rooms, by the way, are cabins located all along the harbour used for everything related to fishing – twine stores, salt stores and more. There are also stages – rough-hewn outdoor docks where fish are processed.

In this case, the rooms occupied by Fishing for Success are used for crafts, equipment storage, educational sessions and food preparation (did I mention I ate?).

Kimberly Orren is co-founder of Fishing for Success, an organization with a number of goals. One is to give Newfoundland children hands-on experience around fishing and the crafts that go with it. She laughs that their program may involve taking kids out on the ocean in small boats, and then giving them knives to filet the fish.

“But kids need risky activities,” she says.

I tell her I agree.

Kimberly, a former teacher, and her colleagues, including story-loving Captain Leo, also

offer programs to tourists and other visitors, individually and in groups, and the income from those events fund the educational programs for kids.

And I can tell you firsthand that those events are terrific. We suited up in warm coats and life jackets and headed out to sea in a small boat called Grace. On the ocean, we followed a lobster-fishing boat and watched the two-person crew haul up lobster traps and display their catches.

They also had smaller denizens of the sea in the traps and since we were close at hand, they tossed them to us to examine before we returned them to the water. So, I can say I caught a sea star – although it was in the air, not the water, when I caught it!

We returned to the Rooms, where Kimberly showed us how to make thump mats – a decorative rope creation that was once of very practical use, used to protect the decks of ships.

As we wove, the Fishing for Success team brought us food –crab salad, fish chowder, homemade partridge berry muffins and, finally, large chunks of the very same lobster we had watched the lobster fishers catch an hour or so earlier. Amazing!

I also visited Herbie’s Olde Shoppe, a general store in Petty

Harbour that was built in 1933 and has operated continuously ever since. Today, RhodieAnne Woodland is a co-owner. Between serving customers, she works at her beloved rug hooking and tells stories about the late founder and the Petty Harbour community she loves.

Everything in the eclectic shop is made by Newfoundlanders including models and stained-glass images of the famed Newfoundland Mummers. Mummering is the Christmas-time tradition of visiting neighbours in disguise.

And I believe I mentioned food? On a second visit to Petty Harbour, we dined at the popular Chafe’s Landing Seafood Eatery where I sampled the excellent fish chowder, but then moved on to another Newfoundland staple. I mowed down a mooseburger accompanied by a local beer, since Newfoundland is now replete with craft breweries.

And you can’t visit Petty Harbour without spending some time strolling along the harbour capturing pictures of the boats named for family members, the colourful rooms and the green hills rising high on all sides.

Petty Harbour is less than a 20-minute drive from St.

John’s, but it’s an entire world away. Both communities are well worth visits. I’ll be writing a lot about St. John’s in subsequent weeks but to get a feel for traditional Newfoundland, conveniently near the capital, Petty Harbour is ideal. It is still a working fishing centre with fishers catching lobster, crab and even cod during the food-fishery season which allows each boat to catch up to 15 cod.

Oh, and in Petty Harbour, I learned that when a Newfoundlander refers to fish, he or she doesn’t mean any random kind of fish. Fish on the Rock is cod and nothing but cod. Everything else will be called by its proper name – halibut, for instance.

And if you are after trout in the streams of Newfoundland, you aren’t fishing, you are “troutin’.” Ah, you gotta love Newfoundland and Labrador, and Petty Harbour is a great place to get very near the heart of this island province.

Paul Knowles is an author and travel writer, and President of the Travel Media Association of Canada. To contact Paul about travel, his books, or speaking engagements, email pknowles@golden.net.

PAUL KNOWLES Echo Contributor
Up close and personal with a sea star... which was soon returned to its natural habitat.
Kimberly Orren of Fishing for Success.

Thamesford News

Shaye’s Superhero Memorial Fun Run returns for second year


From Batman to front-line healthcare workers, Thamesford residents will have a chance to be a superhero for a 5K fun run to raise money for Children’s Hospital.

Shaye’s 2nd annual Superhero Memorial 5K Fun Run will be held on July 14 at 10 a.m. in South Park, Thamesford. Proceeds from the fun run will support London’s Children’s Hospital, with half of the proceeds going to the Natal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and the other half towards the Child and Adolescent Mental Health Unit.

About 3,500 children in the Oxford County region utilized the services at Children’s Hospital in London in the past year. Sheila and Greg Weir organized the event in honour of their late daughter, Shaye, who passed away at just six-weeksold 16 years ago. Shaye spent her life in the NICU, and Sheila said that mental health care is also close to her heart as she has loved ones who either struggle with mental health issues or die by suicide.

“It's very important to us to get the word out there that you may not think about Children's Hospital for anything outside of going to emerg, but it's so much more than what they do,” she said.

Sheila went into full-blown eclampsia and was on life support for three days when she was 25.5 weeks pregnant, and Shaye was born premature. She was taken to the NICU when it was at St. Joseph’s Hospital in London at the time. Shaye started to be able to breathe on her own but developed an infection that her body couldn’t fight off and she passed away.

Sheila, who now volunteers with the Children’s Health Foundation with her son, expressed immense gratitude to -

wards the NICU and wants to give back to the critical care unit that supported her daughter in her short life.

“We were very blessed to have her for the six weeks that we were,” Sheila said. “Because no one thought she was going to make it through the night, and she was our little fighter.”

Her son was born after Shaye’s passing, but he volunteers for the Children’s Health Foundation thinking of his sister. His reason for volunteering is so no other family would have to go through what his family did.

“He's been saying that since he was 10, so proud mom moment right there,” she explained.

Sheila’s friend suggested the superhero theme for the event, as a way to be a superhero to children. The inaugural superhero fun run held in 2023 hosted a variety of superheroes. Sheila and her mom were NICU nurses for the event, and her son was Batman. Sheila recently looked at the photos from the previous event and reflected on the fun everyone of all ages had at the fun run.

“It's all about having fun and giving back,” she said. “We've decided to stick with this superhero theme for every fundraiser that we're going to do moving forward. It is literally so much fun."

After the fun run, participants can enjoy the park’s splash pad and a barbeque from the Thamesford Lions Club. There will also be contests awarding the best tie for male and female participants, best costume, and best kid’s costume with prizes such as tickets to Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Blue Jays games, a $200 Your Independent Grocer Gift Card, and passes for Tera Nova Nordic Spa and Café.

More information can be found by visiting www.childhealth.ca/events/superhero-5k-and-fun-run.

EMILY STEWART Echo Correspondent
Be a superhero for a day and raise money for London’s Children’s Hospital during Shaye’s Second Annual Superhero Memorial 5K Fun Run on July 14 in South Park, Thamesford.
Thamesford Trojans captain Matthew Pimentel will be back with the team for the 2024-25 season. The 21-year-old overager from London scored 14 goals and added 14 assists during the regular season and added 14 points during the Trojans Provincial Junior Hockey League playoff run last season.

FROM THE GARDEN: Lavender ticks all the boxes!

Gardeners grow many kinds of plants in their gardens for various reasons. Herbs have been popular to grow because of their diverse uses and are categorized in groups, based on their properties.

Aromatic herbs are valued for their delightful fragrances, often used in perfumes, soaps, candles and aromatherapy. Culinary herbs are the ones used in cooking, adding unique flavour to dishes and edible products. Ornamental herbs are primarily grown to enhance the visual appeal in gardens and landscapes. And then there are the medicinal herbs which have historical and contemporary uses in herbal medicine. Lavender is one herb that ticks all these category boxes.

Lavender (Lavandula) is a genus of over 45 known species of

this perennial flowering plant in the Lamiaceae or mint family. It originated from the Mediterranean coastal region. Records show lavender dates back over 2500 years. In Ancient Egypt, it was used in the mummification process and as a precious perfume. Lavender was a favourite ingredient in herbal baths of both the Greeks and Romans. Actually, the word lavender is derived from the Latin verb ‘lavare’ meaning ‘to wash’ or ‘to bathe’.

During the Middle Ages, lavender, with its insecticidal properties, was strewn over floors of castles and sickrooms as a disinfectant and deodorant. Other historical uses for lavender include an ingredient in smelling salts, disinfecting wartime wounds, insecticide to protect linens from moths, treatment for headlice and fleas.

In the Renaissance period, lavender became increasingly popular especially during Queen Elizabeth 1 reign. She absolutely loved lavender, wore lavender perfume, drank lavender in her tea as she believed it helped treat her frequent migraines. Queen Elizabeth 1 encouraged the growing and development of lavender farms. During this era, lavender was first

distilled to extract its sweet-smelling essential oil from its flowers. Also, with the many pandemics of cholera and the black plaque, lavender was prized for its ability to protect against infections.

The fondest of lavender with all its valuable uses didn’t wane in the following centuries. Queen Victoria also loved lavender, and had it grown in her gardens. She ordered the furniture to be cleaned with lavender oil and beeswax and to freshen linens. In recent years, lavender has become increasing popular with its essential oils, fragrances and trendy in cleaning products. There is barely a cleaning brand manufacturer that doesn’t offer at least one lavender-scented product.

Culinary uses for lavender also have a rich history and dates to the Middle Ages. In recent decades, it is popular to use lavender flowers in sweet desserts or to flavour savoury dishes. The two main lavender varieties in cooking are English Lavender (L.angustifolias) and Provence Lavender, sometimes called lavandin. English Lavender is sweet and used for cookies, jams, jellies and teas. Provence Lavender is used in savoury spice mixtures in French cuisine. Other lavender

varieties may taste too harsh, perfumery or medicinal for culinary use. It is always best practice to check the lavender is marked for culinary use or grow your own.

As an ornamental, lavender is a good plant for xeriscaping as it does not require much water and is excellent for sandy and poorer soils where there is good drainage. Not only will it help repel nuisance bugs like mosquitos and fleas, but lavender also attracts beneficial pollinators such as

bees and butterflies to its fragrant blooms in the garden. There are many plants we can grow in our gardens but none as versatile as lavender that ticks all the boxes with its uses and properties.

Sources: www.ontario.ca/page/ growing-lavender-ontario-introduction-prospective-growers https://newcropsorganics.ces. ncsu.edu/herb/lavender-history-taxonomy-and-production/

How would you like to see municipal tax dollars spent?

Which ser vices are most impor tant to you and why?

Ox ford County’s municipalities are wor king together to learn more about the ser vice pr iorities of residents.

Have your say by August 30, 2024, at oxfordcount y ca /speakup

I’m tall when I’m young, I’m short when I’m old. What am I? A pencil

What’s worth more after it’s broken? An egg

What has wheels and flies, but it is not an aircraft? A garbage truck

What do geometry teachers have decorating their floor? Area rugs

You measure my life in hours and I serve you by expiring. I’m quick when I’m thin and slow when I’m fat. The wind is my enemy.

A candle

What did the smelly feet and smelly shoes say to each other before going on a long day of walking? This socks!

You cannot come in or go out without me. What am I?

A door

If you throw a blue stone into the Red Sea, what will it become? Wet

What goes up and down the stairs without moving?

A carpet

Featured Pet


This is Nala, he is from Woodstock! Nala is 2.5 years old and has a brother named Pepper! Nala is a fun loving cat, and is ALWAYS full of energy! He loves meeting new kitty friends, and oh of course he loves his treats and wet food! What cat doesn’t? His favourite toys are all the ones with the bells, of course! During the night time he always curls up on his chair and relaxes. Nala always hides in the funniest spots! He hides on top of cubbords or in the bathtub!

Nominate your pet to be a Featured Pet by emailing info@theecho.ca


July 13th; 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

Cedarview Retirement Home: 511 Finkle Street, Woodstock

The Ontario Military Vehicle Association will be here, with face painting, and venders. The association will be doing military jeep rides around the block.


July 19th; 7 p.m. - 10 p.m.

Ingersoll Cheese & Agricultural Museum

Admission by donation. Line dancing, live music, games and more! RSVP here: bit. ly/3UHQIQ7


Presented by the Salford Hall Board

Saturday, July 13, 2024; Gates and Food Trucks: 6 p.m. Band: 7-10 p.m.

Salford Ball Diamond, 383908 Salford Rd. BYO lawn chairs, Complimentary popcorn, coffee & water. Tickets: $20 each, 12 & under FREE. Donations graciously accepted for hall and park improvements.



Caring Hearts Support Network: St. David's United Church, 190 Springbank Ave., Woodstock ON

A safe and supportive space to explore your grief, with the guidance of trained facilitators. Please contact for upcoming dates. No cost to attend. To register or for more information call or text 519-536-3370. www.caringheartssupportnetwork.com. One-on-one grief support is also available.


A new Woodstock Optimist Club is in the process of being formed. If anyone is interested in dates for next info session please email chofrundraiser@gmail.com or maidykeir@ sympatico.ca. The Optimist Brings out the Best in Kids, helping the youth in the community.


4th Saturday of each month; 10:00 a.m.Noon

Hosted by East Oxford 403 Anglican Churches

St. John’s Church, 685860 Oxford Rd. 2, Woodstock

Repairs to clothing, textiles and minor nonelectrical household items by donation. Also offered: learn how to make your own repairs.


July 21st; 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Yvonne Mott Memorial Park, Ingersoll featuring the Chapelaires. Bring a lawn chair.



July 15-19th; 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Ages 5-14. Call the church office now for details on how to register. 519-421-4722.

WOODSTOCK MOOSE LODGE EVENTS: 690 Sutherland Drive, Woodstock


July 13th; 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Once a month car show


July 27, Aug 24 and Sept 21; 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

$25/ couple

$15/ Single


Sunday, July 14th


August 10th; 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

BEACHVILLE LEGION EVENTS: 434852 Zorra Line, Beachville


July 12; 5:30 p.m. Call 519-423-6363 to order


July 20; 7 p.m.

Got a Classic Car? See you in parking lot at 6 pm


July 26; 5:30 p.m.

Call 519-423-6363 to order


August 10; 7 p.m.


Thursdays; 7 p.m.


Fridays; 8 p.m. (Except June 28)




Saturday, July 6th; 8 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Come indulge your Christmas Spirit on Saturday, July 6th from 8 am – 12 pm. Find great bargains on Christmas trees and decorations. Indulge your sweet tooth at the bake sale table.

ROYAL CANADIAN LEGION EVENTS: 642 Dundas Street, Woodstock


July 6th; 7 p.m. - 12 a.m.

Back to Back

July 13th; 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Jeff Dawdy

July 20th; 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Juke Box Junkie

July 27th; 7 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Randy Thomas


July 21st

Music by Chuck Moyer. Donations at the door to go the

Legion requested by David Thomas. 2-5pm

David Thomas, Ethan (Grandson), Mike Slager, Bill Morley, Ken Roberts, Tom Foster, Henry & Jen Grevers, Jamie Levesque.


July 26th; 5 p.m. - 6 p.m. Hamburger's, Potato salad, Corn on the Cob, Brownie Delight. Take out available


July 27th; 3 p.m.



July 9th; 7 p.m.

No General Meeting this month

Downtown Ingersoll BIA PIZZA FEST

Thursday July 25 4 – 8 pm

Downtown Ingersoll

Live Music – Blind Dog Joe, Street Performers – The Pizza Chef, Vendors, Stores Open Late, Children’s Activities, Hands On Exotics –Safari Adventure and of course Pizza! Seating available.

Free Admission – Food Tickets: $1 ea. Pizza Slice: 3 Tickets Pop/Drink: 1 Ticket Proceeds to local charities. Visit



Shade trees, Fruit trees, Apple, Pears, Peaches, Plums, Sweet and Sour Cherries, Apricot, Nectarines, Blueberry, Haskopp, Black Chokeberry, Grapes etc.

Lots of Spruce, Pine, Cedars for windbreaks and privacy hedges, Sizes 1 to 6+. Flowering shrubs and much more. Come check us out Mon-Sat 7:00am - 6:00pm Martin's Nursery, 42661 Orangehill Road, Wroxeter (1 concession north of Wroxeter on Belmore Line)


and TV Sales & Service. Pickup, delivery & in

service available. See the Experts at Shurr Electronics.ca 157 Thames St S Ingersoll 519-485-2790


Call for time and place. 1-800-706-9833 or App Available


It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Bruce Robinson on Monday June 24, 2024 at the Woodstock Hospital with his loving family by his side. He leaves behind his wife Linda and children; daughter Carol Robinson of St. Mary’s, son Michael Robinson of Burlington and daughter Amanda Swangard of Kitchener. Proud papa to Kelly Hodgins, Greg Hodgins, Tori Purdy, Derek Robinson, Owen Robinson, Sophie Swangard, and Graeme Swangard. Great grandpapa to Luci and Lili Steffler.

Cremation has taken place, and Celebration of Life will take place on Wednesday, July 17, 2024 from 2-4 and 6-8pm at the Brock and Visser Funeral Home, 845 Devonshire Ave., Woodstock.


She Was Our North Star, Wise, Solid, Selfless, and Dependable.

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of a “True Fighter” Marilyn Elizabeth Dunn (nee MacIntosh). “Mac” was born on October 11th 1935 to Art & Esther MacIntosh. She was the loving wife of Dave for 63 years. Cherished mom of Lisa (Norm). Adored Gram of Tyneisha (Brandon), Zack (Sarah), Tyson (Krista). Special Grandma of Alan, Jace, Jazzlyn. (Mya, Ashton). Gone before her were her sons David and Bill, granddaughter Catashia, grandson Billy, brothers Don and Gary, and sisters-in-law Mary (Clarence) and Marge (Norm). Marilyn leaves behind sisters-in-law Carol and Becky (Dick). As well as many cherished nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews. Also, dear friends and neighbours. As per Marilyn’s wishes there will be no visitation or funeral service. A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, July 21st at the Elmhurst Inn from 1-4p.m. All Welcome! In lieu of flowers donations in Marilyn’s memory to St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church and Westies in Need would be appreciated. Personal condolences may be posted at www.mcbeathdynes.ca.

“Not a Good-bye But Until We Meet Again”

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