Mackenzie reminisces about old mAcdonald's farm
Architectural Drawing (West view) of the proposed new Farm Animal Display Building for Agricultural Park in Bayfield. (Submitted photo)
As funding is now being sought for a new Farm Animal Display Building in Agriculture Park, long-time members of the Bayfield Agricultural Society (BAS) find themselves reminiscing about the myriad of uses the soon to be retired building once had.
One BAS Director who had a major attachment and connection to the former Pet Display Building is Doreen MacKenzie. She submitted the following narrative about the building.
The Old MacDonald's Farm Petting Zoo is always a popular stop for youngsters exploring the Bayfield Community Fair. (Photos by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
The Petting Zoo Building was originally the “Poultry Building” and each year it rang with crows and quacks and honking. The variety of bird species displayed were polished and groomed to a high shine and were a delight to behold. When the number of entries diminished, Mr. Pepper was contracted to bring his collection of show birds, and they too were beautiful. After Mr. Pepper retired (or died) we would put one or two animals in the building for the children to look at. Tom Penhale would bring his sister, Eleanor’s donkeys and there might be a calf or a pig as well.
When we decided to “get serious” about the “Petting Zoo”, we had Jim Koene and his crew retrofit the building. They made proper box stalls with gates in front and they redesigned the old food display cupboards with chicken wire between the sections and wire in the front doors. These had been painted white and were quite tidy looking. The cement floor could be swept clean and added to its use for small animals. We contacted people with animals; a lady who displayed llamas, a girl with rabbits, and at one time the owners of emus.
At this time one of our most enthusiastic directors was Carol Rome McArthur who made sure that her son at the “Pleasant Pheasant” brought animals to the pet display. One was a beautiful three-quarter size pony who was given the stall at the window and would neigh his critical comments to the horses going by in the parade. He won People’s Choice by a landslide vote! Another was a veal calf named “Freezer” that we immediately renamed “Frazer”! A trio of goats also arrived from the “Pleasant Pheasant” to help fill the stalls.
At that time, we contracted for a pony ride which consisted of four ponies that were fastened to a ring and travelled round and round. At night these ponies came into the pet display building much to the ire of Eeyore, the donkey, who would stand up on his hind legs and bray.
One year a mother donkey and her baby were part of the display. This baby was a complete favorite of young and old. One gentleman sat patting him all evening, and when it was time to close, his wife said, “just turn off the lights and shut the doors, - I’ll come and get him in the morning.” Then she turned and left followed by the bemused husband.
The baby had another moment of fame when it was time for him to go home. The owner led the mother out of the barn and said that the baby would follow. “I don’t think so” thought the young rascal and cantered smartly toward the show ring. We all formed a circle around the little fellow and closed in. When he returned to his mother, the owner tucked him under his arm and carried him to the truck. End of argument!
“These comments from Doreen do not include the fact that the large picture depicting Old MacDonald’s Farm displayed on the building was painted by her,” said Doug Yeo, a BAS past-president. “Another very unique feature of the old building is the locking mechanism that Tom Penhale devised. No one could ever figure out how it worked until you were shown the first time. It is hoped that by next year the new building will begin the process of generating new stories.”
The BAS is seeking the community’s support to assist with the funding to replace the Farm Animal Display building in Agricultural Park. The BAS has been working on this project for over a year and a half. This building will be identical in size with a dry storage (15x20’) attachment. This additional space will accommodate a secure office location for the days of the fair and storage the remainder of the year.
It is a $85,000 project. Since last week there is less than $20,000 to raise. This past week one non-resident donor said three generations of his family have attended the fair and he wanted to contribute. His family has appreciated the efforts the BAS has made over the years to organize the fair and all the activities involved. Another donor challenged others to donate and he would match donations up to $2,500.
Members of the Bayfield Agricultural Society are asking for the community's support in raising funds for a new Pet Display Building for the fair. A price matching challenge is in place until the end of the month to help donor dollars go further.
According to Yeo, “Challenges like that illustrate the attachment many in the community have with the experiences they have had being able to see and touch farm animals during the fair. Other challenges to groups in the community are certainly welcome.
"The BAS is beginning to realize the generosity of the community when it has needed assistance. This past week was quite spectacular when the first Rafter sponsor approached us. If families are wanting to have their names recognized on our donor wall, this week would be good time to call 519 482-9296 for information even if they want to make the donation at some point in 2019."
A brick wall will recognize these generous supporters: Rafter sponsors, $10,000 and greater, Quoin and interior sign; Beam sponsors, $5,000-$9,999, 12”x12” brick; Frame sponsors, $2,000-$4,999, 8”x8” brick; Wall sheeting sponsors, $500- $1,999, 6”x6” or 4”x8” brick; Floor board sponsors, $100 - $499, included on a plaque.
Donations can be made by cheque. They may be made out to the Bayfield Agricultural Society and mailed to treasurer, Jim Erwin, Box 236, Bayfield, ON, N0M 1G0. In addition, arrangements have been made to handle donations of stocks or bonds. All sponsor level donations will receive a charitable receipt for income tax purposes. Donations may also be made to honor the memory of a loved one.
bayfield's forgotten felines in need of funds this christmas
It’s Christmas time and in the holiday hustle and bustle the most vulnerable creatures living among us sometimes get forgotten. The volunteers behind “Bayfield’s Forgotten Felines” are hoping that the cats and kittens that they help will be remembered by those in the community and have launched a Christmas appeal. Funds have been depleted due to an influx of felines in need.
Funds are always needed to support the work, but right now there is an even greater urgency. Financial contributions can be made at Shop Bike Coffee on Main Street.
Organizers shared that they have had 11 kittens/cats neutered since Nov. 14 and they have four more scheduled to go to EVAH in London, ON for the procedure on Jan. 3. Three of these kittens were rescued from Carriage Lane after a coyote grabbed one feline in the litter.
In the summer of 2016 a small group of volunteers organized this Trap-Neuter-Release (TNR) program for the village’s felines and some of the more fragile among the colonies have found forever homes after a little Tender-Loving-Care (TLC).
The word "feral" is used to define a cat that lives outdoors. It essentially does not belong to anyone. Feral cats are the result of a domestic cat being abandoned or lost and left to fend for itself. The offspring of the domestic (now considered feral) cat are usually never handled by people and become terrified.
In addition to neutering the cats also receive a rabies vaccine, are de-wormed, given a flea treatment and receive other vaccinations as necessary plus antibiotics if needed. Currently these cost on average $90 per cat. Females are slightly more expensive to neuter than males. This does not include the transportation costs of volunteer drivers. These costs are totally born by donations as the volunteers receive no money from the municipality.
Besides the medical and transportation costs, the cats are fed daily. There are also expenses for purchasing shelters, cat carriers and kennels to keep the felines in while they are being held before and after surgery as well as for socializing those that are adopted.
Engraved bricks to be added to park path a possibility
The engraved pavers in Clan Gregor Square are a reminder of how great area residents and visitors are when it comes to supporting such projects as the Playground and the Splash Pad. People often ask if they can add an engraved brick to the path. Members of the Bayfield Optimist Club have learned that this may indeed be possible in the Spring of 2019.
They may have the opportunity to add some “In Memoriam” stones for loved ones with the work being done on site in the spring using the same three brick sizes that are already installed around the Splash Pad. The cost of these engraved bricks will vary depending on the size, printing and quantity of bricks to be engraved at that time.
Anyone with an interest in adding a brick can contact Mike Dixon via email at email@example.com or by calling 519 955-5254 for further information.
A change of scenery for the Editor is upcoming and as a result, readers can soon look forward to some Hiatus Issues.
Please note that anyone who would like an article published in the Bayfield Breeze issues to be dated Dec. 26, Jan. 2 or Jan. 9 should submit their information by Thursday, Dec. 20 at 4 p.m.
Live issues of the Bayfield Breeze will resume on Jan. 16.
LIFE AT THE RINK
Hockey fans will have two opportunities to watch a game this week.
The Relics have home ice advantage against the Lucan Leprechauns tonight (Dec. 19) starting at 8:30 p.m.
The Bayfield Relics are an Oldtimers Hockey Team that was founded in 1987. Their home ice is the Bayfield Arena. The Relics play their season schedule versus teams from Huron and Middlesex Counties.
In additon, Bayfield 50+ will host Goderich Over 50s on Thursday, Dec. 20 starting at 8 p.m.
Anglican Christmas Services
The local Anglican congregations request the pleasure of your company at their upcoming Christmas services.
Trinity Anglican Church will present their annual “Service of Lessons and Carols at 9:15 a.m. on Dec. 23.
On Dec. 24, Trinity will host a Happy Birthday Jesus Party for area children and their families. It will be held in the parish hall starting at 4:30 p.m. After the party all are welcome to attend a Christmas Eve Family Service at 5 p.m.
A more traditional Christmas Eve service will follow at St. James’, Middleton starting at 7:30 p.m.
And then on Christmas Day all will be received to herald the birth of the Christ child with a quiet service at Trinity at 10 a.m.
Looking ahead to the New Year, starting Jan. 6 service times at Trinity will be 8:30 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
Presbyterian Christmas Services
The Christmas season can be a difficult time for some for many reasons including, loss, depression, grief and separation from family among. Knox’s Longest Night worship service on Dec. 21 at 7 p.m. is meant to bring comfort and a sense of encouragement. Reminding people that they are not alone.
Dec. 24th is a time of anticipation and joy. All are welcome to come and enjoy a Christmas Eve Candlelight service at 7 p.m. There will be candles, carols and special guest soloist Linda Street as the congregation and community join together to celebrate the peace of the season.
EMPTIES FOR ALZHEIMERS
Dianne Brandon, Carrie and Ava Sabourin would like to remind everyone preparing for holiday gatherings that their tradition of collecting empties for Alzheimer's Disease is continuing this year.
The trio will be participating in the Huron County 2018 Walk for Memories in May of 2019 and are now collecting donations for the cause.
It is, of course, hoped that everyone will celebrate responsibly this festive season and when doing so plan to donate the empty beer bottles and cans; wine and liquor bottles to their team, “For the Love of Elane and Doris”. After living with Alzheimer’s, Elane Brandon, Sabourin’s grandmother died in April 2015 while Doris Schilbe, Dianne’s mother died in August of 2014.
Empties may be dropped off at Brandon's Hardware in Bayfield, or picked up anytime, just call Brandon’s Hardware at 519 525-8884. Empties may also be dropped off at Bayfield Convenience in their names
Anyone interested in forming a chess club in Bayfield?
The idea is to provide a regular forum, not only for experienced players, but also those who would like to take up the game. Depending on the response, we will pick a place and weekly time that best suits everyone.
For more information please call Ian Scott-Douglas at 519 441-2433 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Home4Good would like to announce changes to their Shopping Buddy Program with the regretful closure of the Nip ‘N Tuck which offered grocery delivery in Bayfield over the past few months.
To fill this need Home4Good is recruiting shopping buddies willing to partner with a senior and either take them shopping and/or pick up their groceries. Call Leslie at 519 955-1531 for information about being a buddy or getting a buddy.
Home4Good shopping buddies will take seniors shopping (or pick up shopping for them) at least once a month but not more than once a week. They are screened volunteers, and will probably be doing their own errands as they help others.
The Home4Good Info Hub operates on the first Monday of the month at the Bayfield Public Library from 1-3 p.m.
The Hub helps seniors in the Bayfield area find local community services, resources and supports. Volunteers will assist in finding relevant information for daily living, overall health and wellbeing. At any other time of the month should people have concerns or questions they are welcome to approach library staff who will refer inquiries to Hub volunteers.
To learn more visit: www.home4goodbayfield.ca.
GIRL GUIDE COOKIES
Have you got your Chocolatey Mint Girl Guide Cookies yet? At $5 a box they make terrific hostess gifts and stocking stuffers!
They can also be purchased now from members or by calling Melody Falconer-Pounder at 519 525-3830.
Profits from sales help with program activities, field trips and camps.
One of the most anticipated events of the New Year is the annual Winter Walk hosted by the Bayfield River Valley Trail Association (BRVTA). This year the walk held on the Varna Nature Trails is set for Jan. 12.
The Winter Walk that starts at 11 a.m. provides occasion to breathe fresh air, explore a local trail, meet community members and get moving into 2019. The Winter Walk is hosted at the Varna Complex 1 KM West of Varna. Guided hikes are led between 11 a.m. and noon along the Mavis Trail or Taylor Trail. Participants are asked to arrive by 10:45 a.m. for the 11 a.m. start and to dress appropriately with hiking boots, as the trails may be slippery.
Following the hikes, everyone is invited to warm up indoors with cider and a light lunch. This is also a great opportunity for people to renew their BRVTA membership! Everyone welcome.
The hike leaders will be: Dave MacLaren, 519 565-5480; Peter Jeffers, 519 933-4555 and Roger Lewington, 519 565-2202.