BAYFIELD BROTHERS PORTRAY JEAN CANTIN IN "NARCISSE"
Brothers Isaac and Nigel Van Aaken, of Bayfield, are spending part of their summer on an outdoor stage in St. Joseph as members of the cast of "Narcisse". The boys attend St. Boniface School in Zurich and are the children of Leigh Anne and Rob Van Aaken. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
BY MELODY FALCONER-POUNDER
Back in the winter a schoolmate approached Isaac Van Aaken, 13, about trying out for a part in a community play to be held in St. Joseph, ON in July. Isaac thought it sounded like it might be something fun to do in the summer. His, younger brother, Nigel, 9, thought he might as well try out too because if his brother got a part he’d have to go along to the practices anyway.
And so it came to be that following February auditions the boys were cast as the same character but at different stages of his life. In addition, they play the part of extras in a variety of scenes from members of parliament to workers in a brickworks.
Nigel portrays, the younger version of Jean Cantin, one of Narcisse Cantin’s sons, during life in Buffalo, NY. Isaac is an older version of Jean at the time of the family’s arrival in St. Joseph.
The brothers are among over 50 other actors staging “Narcisse” a new play about St. Joseph by playwright Paul Ciufo, of Grand Bend. Duncan McGregor is directing this outdoor theatre experience.
The St. Joseph and Area Historical Society will present 10 performances of the production from July 19-30.
The play is the story of Narcisse Cantin, founder of St. Joseph, who was born in 1870. Of French Canadian descent, it was his dream to build a canal from Lake Huron to Lake Erie that would serve as a transportation center. Fulfillment of his dream depended upon government approval and its subsidies for the canal.
The website created for the production states that while petitioning the government for its help, Cantin acquired land and proceeded to plan a town site to include several hundred residential lots and streets for palatial homes. He built a three-story hotel, named it “Balmoral,” and attracted businesses that included an organ factory, a winery, a brickworks, and other essential stores to serve the community. He also enticed a number of French Canadian families living in Chicago to move to the new town of St. Joseph.
For a while, the town experienced growth and there were signs things would go as planned. However, fate intervened in the form of WWI and there were no funds for the canal. Thus ended the dream of Narcisse Cantin and the prospects for St. Joseph. The three-story Balmoral Hotel was demolished in 1920 without ever having a guest.
Both Isaac and Nigel have taken part in weekly rehearsals since the end of March but now as opening night draws near they are attending daily two-hour practices. These rehearsals have moved from local halls to the large outdoor stage set up on the grounds of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, on Hwy. 21, 1.6 KM north of St. Joseph. Both Cantin, and his wife Josephine, are reported to have been married in the church and a number of people depicted in the play are buried in the cemetery located there.
As cast members the boys have three costume changes and in one scene they will even be sporting moustaches, which they seem to think is good fun.
Isaac noted that, “the fight scene is brutal”. He reportedly gets punched in the stomach and lifted overhead. He also acknowledged that learning how a fight scene comes together and how to fall safely was really interesting.
Nigel said, “The hard part for me is to stop laughing in a scene when I’m supposed to.”
Both boys also enjoyed learning several songs in French. The musical numbers that are performed are done in French as a reflection on the community’s cultural heritage.
The boys have also learned a lot about local history as well as a bit about their own family tree as they discovered that their mother, Leigh Anne, had a great uncle who was married to a Cantin.
Tickets for “Narcisse” are available by calling toll free to the Blyth Festival Box Office 1-877-862-5984. There will be 10 performances from July 19-30 (the stage will be dark July 24-25); Tuesdays to Fridays the show begins at 6 p.m., Saturdays, 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults and $12 for children 16 years and under. Seating is general admission on a first come first served basis, the grounds open at 4:30 p.m. on performance days.
For more information, visit the website at www.narcissetheplay.com.
FIREMEN FRY UP THE BACON
The members of the Bayfield Fire Department held their annual Firemen's Breakfast on the morning of July 9. For the second consecutive year they served over 800 people - 20 more than the previous year. The Bayfield Firefighters Association would like to thank all their generous suppliers and of course the residents and visitors who helped to make the breakfast such a success. (Photo by Dianne Brandon)
Environmental milestone to be celebrated on July 21
A celebration of four decades of Bayfield River Watershed stewardship will be held on July 21 at the Bayfield Community Centre and all in the community are welcome to join in the festivities.
Almost 40 years ago, the Province of Ontario, with support of local municipalities, expanded the area of the former Ausable River Conservation Authority to include the Bayfield River Watershed and some smaller streams draining into Lake Huron. The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario of that time, The Honorable William Ross Macdonald, approved the Order-in-Council on July 21, 1971.
Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) invites everyone to attend this anniversary event to honor this environmental milestone. A social time with the service of light refreshments will begin at 6:45 p.m., followed by a short formal presentation starting at 7 p.m. The event will conclude with cake.
The evening will feature a major local announcement related to the protection of the Bayfield River Watershed. The anniversary’s theme is honoring achievements of the past, today’s progress and positive plans for the future. Anyone interested in attending is invited to RSVP by July 15 to Jessica Schnaithmann at ABCA either by email at email@example.com, or by calling 519 235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.
“Protection and improvement of the Bayfield River Watershed is taking place because landowners and residents are getting involved,” said Jim Ginn, chairman of the ABCA Board of Directors. “This celebration of four decades of Bayfield River Watershed stewardship is a chance to share some positive news about future efforts to protect and improve the watershed and also to thank the public for their positive actions so far.”
Earlier that same day, the ABCA Board of Directors will hold their monthly meeting in Bayfield to honor the board meeting of 40 years ago. This board meeting will take place at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building at 3:30 p.m. and is also open to the public. Please contact Judith Parker at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone ABCA at the numbers listed above for more information.
The conservation authority assumed additional responsibility for the Bayfield River Watershed in 1971. The area also included all other streams entering Lake Huron from the point where the north boundary of the former Ausable River Conservation Authority met the shore of Lake Huron to the point where the north boundary of the village of Bayfield meets the shore of Lake Huron. Bayfield River Watershed is in the northern part of the ABCA’s area. The basin includes almost 500 square KMs beginning north of Dublin and out letting at the Village of Bayfield.
The Bayfield River Watershed celebration is being hosted at the Bayfield Community Centre in cooperation with the Municipality of Bluewater Communities in Bloom Committee, which is holding an open house there on the evening of July 21 from 7-9 p.m.
Youth unlimited members serve at trinity
Teens from Youth Unlimited spent part of Serve Week, July 1-8, at Trinity Anglican Church in Bayfield helping the congregation with tasks from steam cleaning carpets and chairs to painting. When the "to do" list was complete the team posed for a picture, clockwise from centre: Daniel Boers, Helena Schuurman, Angela Mutoigo, Anika Bosua, Daniel Tamming, supervisors, George Vander Tuig and Dina Zomer; Tiffany Voordenhout, Rory Wright, Meghan Vander Stoep and Jordan Pedro. (Photos by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
Teens from Youth Unlimited spent part of Serve Week, July 1-8, at Trinity Anglican Church in Bayfield helping the congregation with tasks from steam cleaning carpets and chairs to painting.
Youth Unlimited was established in 1919 as the American Federation of Reformed Young Men's Society and has since evolved and grown into an avenue of service for churches with junior and senior high youth groups across North America.
Pastor Sieman Speelman, of the Vanastra Community Christian Reform Church, coordinated Serve Week in Huron County. The youth and leaders who helped out for four days in Bayfield hailed from different parts of Canada and the United States with many being from Ontario.
This year Serve Week took on a different twist. In the past they have found work sites through local churches, thrift stores and various agencies in the area. This year they added other outside organizations such as the Huron County Food Banks, Soup & More, Christian Business Missions of Huron, and Habitat for Humanity.
“We got involved through Terry Boa-Youmatoff's connection with the Huron County Food Bank, Feed My Sheep, at Trinity Anglican Church. She was at a food bank meeting where it was discussed that any facility that houses the program would be eligible for the visiting students’ efforts. We submitted a list of possible tasks and were accepted into the program,” said Olga Palmer, a member of the Trinity congregation. “On our part we took turns hosting the group, making sure they had lots of refreshments. Our warden, Philip Keightley, was our coordinator and many others enjoyed spending time at the church with the enthusiastic and hard working group!”
ATTENDANCE INCREASES AT VETTEFEST
The sun shone brightly over the 250 corvettes that parked in Clan Gregor Square for the 2011 edition of Bayfield Vettefest held on July 9. Thirty-seven corvette owners belonging to the South Western Ontario Corvette Club based out of Collingwood were among the attendees. Other participants came from as far as Oakville, Toronto and Windsor. Attendance was up by about 20 cars over last year's event. (Photos by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
In addition to the Saturday event, corvette owners were invited to join in a Cruise Night that departed from Clan Gregor Square on the evening of July 8. Between 70 to 80 vehicles took part in the cruise which took their drivers and passengers the long way to Goderich and back.
John Brown, of Owen Sound, took a moment during the car show to polish the wind shield of his 2000 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible.
TURNING A PAGE
Bradley Skinner, principal architect with Skinner & Skinner Architects, of London, presented the initial plans for the Bayfield Public Library to about 40 citizens, some representing organizations like the Bayfield Historical Society and Archives and the newly formed Friends of the Bayfield Library, on the morning of July 9 at the Bayfield Community Centre. In addition to a new home for stacks of books, the plans include much desired space to offer library programs, public washrooms and post office boxes. A closer look at the plans for the Bayfield Public Library will be featured in an upcoming issue of the Bayfield Breeze. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
The Southern Ontario Thunderbird Club (SOTC) hopes to have 100 Thunderbirds park in the shade of Clan Gregor Square during their 14th annual car show in Bayfield on July 17.
All Thunderbird enthusiasts are welcome to this largest single gathering of the SOTC for the year. Participants don’t have to be SOTC members; anyone with a T-Bird can come into the park and join in celebrating the club’s 32nd anniversary.
There will be music, door prizes, food and great fun for Thunderbird lovers both old and young. The event begins at 9 a.m. and participants are encouraged to come early to get a nice shady spot under the trees and near the gazebo. The day will conclude about 4 p.m.
The members of the Bayfield and Area Horticultural Society and their invited guests will enjoy their annual Summer Potluck on July 18.
This annual event will be held at the home of John and Kathleen Siertsema, 34541 Mill Road, starting at 6:30 p.m.
Those who attend this rain or shine event are reminded to bring a favorite dish to share, their own plates and cutlery as well as a lawn chair.
Summer is here and there is no better time to kick back and enjoy the music.
One of the performers who played on Parliament Hill for Canada Day in the presence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will soon grace the stage at the Bayfield Town Hall. Jenn Grant, with opening act, Wsg, will be featured on July 14 as part of the Bayfield Concert Series
The concert will be held in the Bayfield Town Hall with the doors opening at 8 p.m. and the show starting at 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $30 each and are available now at www.ticketscene.ca
Sadly for those yet to get tickets, Ron Sexsmith’s Summer Show to be held on July 22 is now sold out.
For the second consecutive year, the Municipality of Bluewater is proud to be a part of the Provincial Communities in Bloom Program competition. There are new dates for the judges’ visit. They will be coming to Bluewater July 20-22.
Last year, the Municipality of Bluewater printed a pamphlet that explains the program. This highly recognized program is not just about floral displays. It promotes environmental responsibility and beautification through community participation and friendly competition!
The judging criteria is based on eight categories: tidiness, environmental awareness, community involvement, natural and cultural heritage, tree/urban forest management, landscaped areas, floral displays, turf and groundcovers.
The color scheme for this year’s “Bluewater Blooms” is red, purple, pink and blue. People will notice these colors in planters on the streets of Hensall, Zurich and Bayfield.
In conjunction with the judges’ visit, the Municipality of Bluewater Communities in Bloom Committee, will be holding an open house at the Bayfield Community Centre on the evening of July 21 from 7-9 p.m.
The Bayfield Town Hall Heritage Society in conjunction with the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival will be hosting an evening of musical entertainment as part of the Rural Roots Concert Series on Aug. 1.
Comas, with opening act Ashley Anderson, will take to the Bayfield Town Hall stage at 7:30 p.m.
Comas are a band firmly rooted in Irish music, but with enough space to allow in original compositions. Formed in 2003 the four members have performed together all across Europe and following their week at the Celtic Festival will be touring in the Eastern United States.
Translated from the Irish/Gaelic their name means power, Comas is said to be at the forefront of what traditional music is about today.
Tickets are available now for $15 adult; $10 youth; (or $18 at the door) by calling the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival Box Office at 519 524-8221 or emailing email@example.com or in Bayfield by calling 519 565- 2202 or 519 565-2894.
The fish will be frying on July 30th when the congregation of Knox Presbyterian Church holds their first annual Fish Fry at the Bayfield Community Centre.
The meal will be served from 4:30-7 p.m. Two salads, tomatoes, rolls, and a baked potato are sure to compliment the Lake Huron white fish. Delectable homemade desserts will finish things off nicely.
Tickets are $17 for adults; and $10 for children 11 years and under. Take-out will also be available. For tickets please call 519 565-2435, or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or consult any member of the Knox Church congregation.
Photography is a passion best enjoyed when work can be shared with others and a talent best improved when surrounded by like-minded individuals. For these reasons some local photographers are exploring the idea of establishing a photography club in Bayfield.
“There are obviously a large number of good, and even great, photographers here and we could all benefit from each other’s skills and talents, share interesting photos, set up challenges and hold workshops; whatever such a group might want to do,” said Jack Pal.
Anyone who might like to join a local photography club and/or anyone with insights on how one might be best established here are invited to contact Pal at email@example.com or Gary Lloyd-Rees at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anyone who is 55+ years of age is invited to join the members of the Bayfield Diners’ Club for their weekly Thursday lunches. Newcomers and summer residents are most welcome to join in the meal.
The meals are served at noon at the Bayfield Community Centre. The cost for the lunch is $8 per person. Anyone who wishes to enjoy the meal but cannot make it to the community centre is invited to order a take-out lunch.
Participants should call Betty Brodhagan at 519 565-4123 on the Monday prior to the Thursday lunch to inform organizers of their intention to attend or not to attend the luncheon.
The Bayfield Diners’ Club is also looking volunteers to assist in the kitchen for the summer months. Anyone who can donate two hours of their Thursday morning to help prepare or serve the lunch would be most welcome and should contact Brodhagen at the number listed above.
Summer is here and now that all those good fitness habits have been established it is time to get out and enjoy not only the weather but a variety of opportunities to keep fit as well.
One Care is sponsoring several programs for both men and women to stay fit over the summer months. The following activities are scheduled to run from now until August.
Dancefit and Toning classes are held on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9 a.m. The cost is $40 for four months or $3 per class. The Sit and Get Fit classes are offered on Mondays and Wednesdays at 10:15 a.m. The cost is $1 per class.
Both of these fitness opportunities are held at the Bayfield Community Centre.
For the more adventurous among us, there is Pole Walking. Walks for women will start at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays, while the men can venture out on Mondays and Fridays at 8:30 a.m. All walks begin from 6 Main Street and poles are provided free for those who require them.
A Yoga Class will be held at the Bayfield Town Hall starting at 10 a.m. on Tuesdays. New for the months of July and August is a Yoga Class to be held in Pioneer Park on Thursday mornings at 8:30 a.m. weather permitting. The cost for either yoga experience is $3 per class and participants are asked to bring a yoga mat.
Call 519 565-2202 for more information on the above exercise opportunities.
For those people looking to exercise their minds, Women’s Bridge is played every Wednesday at 1 p.m. No partner needed to play the cost is $1.50 per game. For more information call Brenda Blair 519 565-2881.
Mah Jongg games and lessons are also offered on the first and third Mondays of the month starting at 1 p.m. Call 519 565-2468 for more information.
Both Bridge and Mah Jongg are played at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building.
Bridge lessons and Duplicate Bridge games are offered in Goderich. Tom Rajnovich is the Goderich bridge contact 519 524-6374.
Bayfield residents can join the Zumba craze as classes are now being held in the village. Zumba is a dance fitness class that combines Latin rhythms and easy to follow moves, creating a calorie burning dance party suitable for all ages.
ZUMBA classes continue in the village with Instructors, Alison de Groot and Lorraine Dietz. One-hour classes are held Monday mornings starting at 9:30 a.m. at the Bayfield Town Hall and evening classes are held at the Bayfield Community Centre on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. For more information contact de Groot at email@example.com.
Please be advised that the Wednesday Evening Bridge Club will meet next on July 6 at the Bayfield Lions’ Community Building. The cards will be dealt starting at 7 p.m. All are welcome to attend.