sunflower selfies with social distancing to raise funds
Sunflowers will be bursting forth soon in a field just south of the village in honor of Max Rombouts and many involved in making the fundraiser happen gathered to see the progress recently. The Rombouts family, Kevin and Jamie and their sons, Zack and Hudson (to the right of the sign) joined field owners Brian and Mary Ellen Coombs (foreground) as well as Brian and Marni Van Aaken (to the left of the sign) and Brian Schoonjan (far right). Also involved in the project but unavailable to take part in the picture were Taylor Van Aaken and Greg Keys. (Photos by Elaine Coombs)
Something bright and sunny is popping up all over in a field just south of the village – sunflowers are beginning to bloom at 75774 Bluewater Hwy just across the road from Bayfield Foodland.
Thousands of yellow miracles are raising their heads to the sky in memory of a very special little guy. The field was planted to honor Miracle Max, a brave young boy who fought every day of his life against leukemia.
Miracle Max's Minions fundraising sunflower field will be open to the public starting today (July 8) for social distancing selfies. Those who visit are asked to leave a cash donation or send an E-transfer.
The field is owned by Brian and Mary Ellen Coombs who are also friends of Max’s parents Jamie and Kevin Rombouts. The sunflower crop was made possible through the generous support and work of Taylor Van Aaken, Greg Keys, Brian Van Aaken and Brian Schoonjan.
The Coombs and Rombouts invite people to visit the sunflower field.
“Although Max’s fight on earth ended at the tender age of two, Max’s spirit lives on in our hearts and in this field,” said the Rombouts and Coombs in a joint press release.
With social distancing measures in place this field will be open to the public starting today (July 8). A donation box (or etransfer) is on site and all proceeds will go to Miracle Max’s Minions. E-transfers are also welcome. Please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Donations will be made to a variety of agencies that helped Max and his family during their fight, with the hope that they can help other families in their time of need.
Birdhouse Sale raises funds for bayfield firefighters
Connor and Tim Withers (far left) presented Bayfield Fire Chief Brian Brandon with a big cheque on June 28. (Photo by Dianne Brandon)
At the end of June people driving through Bayfield may have noticed a colorful display of birdhouses for sale just before the turn onto Clan Gregor Square. The Birdhouse Foundation was having a sale from which $1,000 was given to the Bayfield Fire Department. The youth behind the Foundation, Connor Withers, wanted to raise some funds to support the community’s first reponders as the Bayfield firefighters were unable to hold their annual Firemen’s Breakfast this year due to COVID-19.
Withers began making birdhouses in 2013 at just 8 years-old. His dad, Tim, encouraged his carpentry skills and collaborates with him on both marketing ideas and growth opportunities. His whole family gets involved with promotion and sales. In the last seven years, Withers has rasied more than $40,000 for the Joseph Brant Hospital Foundation. In 2013 he was named Junior Citizen of the Yeat by the Ontario Community Newspapers Assocation. He has also been recognized by the City of Burlington and the Province of Ontario for his efforts.
The Birdhouse Foundation has also achieved global recognition with birdhouses being installed in Tanzania and Hong Kong and after this very successful local sale there should be quite a few colorful houses popping up around the village too.
How to be part of the virtual bayfield community fair
Several of the Bayfield Agricultural Society’s (BAS) Directors met on the fairgrounds to finalize the planning for the 2020 fair. No one could have predicted that this group would be learning how to videotape, have timelines way before the fair dates, and rethink what is possible in a completely different environment. Some of the standard activities at the fair are just not possible or there were not enough volunteers to fully carry them out.
The good news is that the homecraft and agricultural elements will be well represented. There will be some great demonstrations, interviews with area experts and discussions with judges who will describe what they look for when evaluating exhibits. There will be entertainment – currently the Directors are not sure if it will be live streamed or taped. Food is always part of a fair and a drive by food service will be available for presold ticket holders; there will also be a demonstration to make one of the foods that is a class in the prize book.
The Bayfield Fair is a community fair and so the Directors have several ways in which the community can be involved before fair weekend – Aug. 14-16. The first way is to make “Blossoms, Butterflies and Bees” since that is our theme this year. People of all ages are asked to make one or more of the theme items and we will be displaying them in the fairgrounds. Large craft items are certainly welcome and people have several weeks to create them on these hot humid days. They will be outside when displayed so that might be one consideration when planning them. They can be dropped off at the fairgrounds near the new BAS building on Saturday Aug. 8 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“We hope to have a fence full of items so that those who drive by picking up their food can drive along the fence and see all the creativity in Bayfield. Those who made them can pick them up on Sunday, Aug. 16 from 3-4 p.m.,” said Doug Yeo, representing the BAS.
The second way to get involved is to pick up a fair prize book at the Bayfield Convenience Store. Note the BAS is not using them this year; however, they would like people to submit a picture of themselves or their family members looking at the book at any local site.
“We will be sharing some of your submitted pictures during the fair weekend and displaying all the others on our social media sites. Each picture requires the names of who are in the picture and permission to use the pictures on our sites if there are any children in it. Let’s see how creative you are ensuring the 2020 prize book is visible,” said Yeo.
He also added that there will be one more competition using the book which will be announced shortly.
The third way to be involved is for youth to prepare a poster for the 2021 fair. The theme, “Harvesting Memories, Planting the Future”; the date, “August 20-22”; and the fair name, “Bayfield Community Fair” or “Bayfield Fair”, must be on the poster. The winning posters will be used on the 2021 prize book with recognition of the top posters. Participants should add the age of the person submitting the poster so the BAS can pick a top poster from different age groups. The poster will be on 450 copies and likely in color as well.
Entertainment is always showcased at the fair and is the fourth way to be involved. Entertainers of all ages are invited to submit a two to four-minute tape of their individual or group talent.
“This is the chance to share your magical, musical, acrobatic or other talent,” said Yeo. “Several will be randomly chosen to be seen during the fair weekend and the others will be shared through our social media sites.”
Finally, volunteers are still needed for video editing, some video taking and if there is an event someone would like to ensure takes place, they are asked to let the Directors know.
All contacts and submissions should go currently to email@example.com or call 519 482-9296.
“Keep watching for further ways to be involved and our competitions will be posted on our website,” said Yeo. “You can truly make this one of the most memorable fairs even though we cannot see one another which is the norm at a conventional fair. The Bayfield Fair will still have a presence in Bayfield during August.”
People invited to release butterflies in a safe place
Two hundred and twenty-five butterflies found their wings on the afternoon of Sept. 7, 2019 as part of the third annual Memorial Butterfly Release, a fundraiser for Huron Hospice. The 2020 event will be held in a way that supports COVID-19 protocols. (Photo by Blanka Jordanov)
The Fourth Annual Butterfly Release, a fundraiser for Huron Hospice, will be held on Saturday, Aug. 29th but the experience will be a little different in 2020.
The annual release is an event that is cherished by the community. Losing a loved one is a painful experience and this event is a meaningful and beautiful way to recognize the impact of the loss and honor that person.
“The act of releasing a commemorative butterfly keeps the memory of our loved one alive and provides us with a moment of appreciation, recognition, gratitude, and acceptance. Being part of this event strengthens the connection between the community and the end-of-life care that the Huron Hospice provides,” said Kayla Gauthier, Fund Development intern at Huron Hospice.
Due to COVID-19, the event this year will be virtual. Participants will do a curbside pick-up at a specified time to receive their pre-purchased butterfly the day of the event, and will then be able to release their butterfly on their own at a safe location that is special to them. There will be a livestream ceremony at the Huron Hospice Residence in the Memorial Forest shortly after the pick-up that will include the reading of the memorial names, speeches, and the release of butterflies.
Monarchs are available to purchase until July 27th, for $30 via eventbrite.ca. Purchasers will receive an email with a time for pickup and care instructions for the butterflies. Organizers ask that participants please refer to their given time during the pickup to maximize the safety of their butterflies.
Gauthier noted, “In addition, this event brings awareness to the importance of, and the role of, wildlife in our community. Butterflies are important pollinators. Their release helps our community by enhancing butterfly gardening.”
She went on to say that butterfly gardening reduces the need for insecticides which is a direct benefit to local farms and wineries. The release of butterflies also aids in replenishing native populations, and provides important learning opportunities for children about the importance of wildlife and butterflies.
“We welcome you to join us in participating in the 4th Annual Butterfly Release on Aug. 29th!” concluded Gauthier.
Painting of helen mcLeod II to be auctioned for archives
This painting, by artist Doug Darnbrough, of the Helen MacLeod II is being auctioned off as a fundraiser for the Bayfield Heritage Centre & Archives. (Submitted photo)
The Bayfield Historical Society (BHS) is hosting an online Art Auction from now to Aug. 29. Up for bids is an orginal painting of the historic schooner, Helen McLeod II, by artist Doug Darnbrough.
According to the BHS website, “The Helen MacLeod II, a Lake Huron fishing schooner, was built in 1925 by Louie MacLeod (1888-1961) in Bayfield. It had an overall length of 36 feet, a beam of 10 feet, and a 3-foot-6-inch draft. For good luck, Louie used a piece of the Malta, which had been shipwrecked near the Bayfield shoreline in 1882. Cypress wood was ordered from Louisiana, and local Red Beech wood was used in the “boxed heart” keel. The Bayfield hardware store ordered a barrel of nails for the construction.
The first Helen MacLeod was built in 1890 by Louie's father, Hugh MacLeod (1834-1908), an immigrant from the Isle of Lewis, Scotland, who settled in Bayfield. Hugh named the vessel after his daughter Helen. Wooden boats at the time had a life span of about 25 years.”
The Helen MacLeod II is currently stored in Bayfield, with plans to eventually display the schooner for public viewing but the lucky bidder can have their own artist’s representation to hang in a place of honor in their home by summer’s end.
“We are delighted to present this opportunity to local historians and residents who can own a piece of our history preserved in this beautiful painting,” said President of the BHS, Ruth Gibson.
This framed work, done in acrylic medium on gesso over hardboard, measures 18 x 24 inches, framed 22 x 29 inches. A color poster of the original is on display in the window of the Bayfield Heritage Centre & Archives on Main Street in the village. Viewing of the original painting can be arranged by appointment; email firstname.lastname@example.org.
How to Bid: Anyone wishing to bid is asked to email their bid amount to the above addres with their bid amount, name, address and phone number. People must bid at least $25 above the latest high bid posted online. This high bid will be updated weekly on the BHS website and on their Facebook Page. Due to the value of this historical painting, a reserve bid has been placed. If final bids result in a tie, there will be a draw. The winner must pay by cash or e-transfer and will be announced on the BHS website and Facebook Page on Aug. 31.
To learn more or to check on the bids visit: www.bayfieldhistorical.ca/online_art_auction.html.
Darnbrough attended the University of Windsor and the University of Guelph, graduating in 1973 with an Honors BA, majoring in Fine Art Studies. His works have been exhibited and sold across the province of Ontario and in New York state. His work is also part of the collection at the Canadian consulate in London, England, and in the following corporate collections: Canadian National Railway; Torwest Properties, Commerce Court, Toronto; and CIBC, Toronto. He considers artist and educator Eric Cameron and photorealist artist Ken Danby to be two of his biggest influences.
Proceeds from the auction will go towards the restoration of the Bayfield Heritage Centre & Archives on Main Street.
COUNTDOWN TO SPLASH DOWN
June 16th was an exciting day in Clan Gregor Square when work began on the reconstruction of the Bayfield Splash Pad. Ward Councillor for Bayfield, Bill Whetstone reported that municipal staff is working with the contractor to push through to completion as quickly as possible. As of this July 3rd update, the cement had been poured and work was scheduled to begin in the pump house, as well as returning the brickwork around the pad, starting July 6. If all goes to plan the Splash Pad should be open in about one week. (Photo by Melody Falconer-Pounder)
The Bayfield Farmers' Market will hold their eighth market of the season on Friday, July 10. From fresh vegetables to homemade pierogis, burgers to ribs, the Bayfield Farmers' Market is stocked with amazing local products.
This week, be sure to check out: fresh leafy greens and herbs, from Firmly Rooted; hand made pierogis and vegan dips, from J.Bogal Foods: bacon and pork ribs, from Cedarvilla Angus Farms; fresh breads and pastries, from Red Cat Bakery; pies, jams and ciders, from Bayfield Berry Farm; burgers, satays and curries, from Petojo Food, locally roasted coffee and granola, from Shop Bike Coffee Roasters; and lots more.
Orders can be placed on the market's new online marketplace openfoodnetwork.ca/bayfield-farmers-market/shop. All orders must be placed by 11 p.m. on Wednesday. Customers of Firmly Rooted Farm are asked to place orders directly on their online store, www.localline.ca/firmly-rooted, by Tuesdays at 8 p.m.
Market pick-up hours are 3-5 p.m. every Friday. The pick-up location is the parking area on the north side of Clan Gregor Square.
Customers with a last name beginning with initials A-M are asked to pick up in the first hour (3-4 p.m.) and N-Z in the second hour (4-5 p.m.).
Delivery within 15 KMs of Bayfield is available for a flat fee of $5.
Should anyone have a question about a specific product, please contact the vendor directly. Their contact information can be found on their profile page on the online market store.
County Fire Ban
As of yesterday (July 7), the Huron County Fire Chiefs have declared an open-air fire ban in Huron County. There will be no open air burning permitted in Huron County until further notice.
Open air fires are defined as any fire outside of a building. This include bonfires, campfires, burn barrels, fireworks or any other fires set in open air.
Campfires for the purpose of cooking are permitted from noon to midnight only. After midnight, all fires must be completely extinguished.
This fire ban is being imposed due to the extreme dryness of all vegetation in the area and shall remain in effect until further notice.
With seasonal crops being harvested, farmers are encouraged to use extreme caution when operating equipment as field fires can quickly overtake equipment or neighboring crops. These fires can also spread quickly into adjacent woodlands.
If anyone discovers an open-air fire, it is very important that they report it immediately by calling 9-1-1. Do not delay reporting while attempting to control or extinguish.
No burn permits will be issued until the ban is lifted.
If anyone has any questions regarding this order, please contact the local Fire Department. Bluewater, 519 236-4351; Central Huron, 519 482-3997; Huron East, 519 527-0160, Ext. 28; South Huron, 519 235-1981; and Goderich, 519 525-7229 or 519 524-8344.
With community events and public gatherings put on hold during these uncertain times, the Friends of Bayfield Library (FOBL) has made the difficult decision to postpone this year’s book sale at the Bayfield Public Library until 2021.
While FOBL recognizes this news is a disappointment for everyone who looks forward to this annual event, there just isn’t any safe way to hold a used book sale at present. FOBL looks forward to planning and hosting the book sale again in 2021. Anyone who has been saving books, CDs, DVDs, puzzles, and games to donate to the book sale, please hold onto them until next year when these donations will be more than welcome!
Bayfield Garden Club memberships helped volunteers plant the urns in front of the library for the summer season. (Photos submitted)
The Bayfield Garden Club (BGC) executive have decided to cancel the garden tour planned for July and the August summer potluck and tour due to COVID-19 and the need to limit group activities and continue physical distancing. They had a great line-up of speakers and events planned for this year and they will keep people informed of future events later in the season.
“Thanks to everyone who got their Bayfield Garden Club memberships for this year. This has helped our volunteers plant the urns in front of the library and the planters around Clan Gregor Square in Bayfield. The Clan Gregor Square planters are battling with the squirrels who are digging up plants to bury peanuts and leaving the plants on top!” said Susan Beatty, representing the BGC. “As you drive through Bayfield take a look at the library urns in front of the library and enjoy the other floral displays on Main Street, courtesy of the Municipality of Bluewater and the shopkeepers. Thanks again for your support.”
The BGC executive will keep people informed as to when they can resume their regular meetings.
centre for the arts
In an effort to stay in touch with the community and offer creative experiences to its followers, Bayfield Centre for the Arts (BCA) is posting carefully curated links to a variety of artistic organizations on their Facebook page Bayfield Centre for the Arts (@ bayfieldarts). To date, painting tutorials, photography workshops and performances have been popular.
To support the continued growth of the BCA, the organization is now selling custom designed journals with three different custom covers. The creatives behind the covers are Debra Macarthur, Leslee Squirrell and Jack Pal. Each journal measures 6” x 9” and has 200 acid free, archival pages of 28 lb paper, lined or unlined. The journals are selling for $15 each.
These journals could be used as diaries, sketchbooks and travel logs. They are also perfect notebooks for gardening records, meetings or workshops. The journals are available on the BCA Facebook Page. Details can be found by clicking on the “Shop” button. At the moment those who purchase journals are asked to pick them up from the front porch of 15 Dow St in Bayfield.
Or they can also be found at The Village Bookshop on Main Street in Bayfield. In addition to the great selection of books they are known for, the bookshop is now carrying artist supplies, including the beautiful, creamy Chroma acrylic paints which some members of the BCA are fans of.
The purchase of these journals will help the BCA provide workshops, studios, mobile art programs and exhibitions in the visual arts for all ages and abilities.
For more information email Hello@bayfieldarts.ca.
Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, Grand Bend and Area Chamber of Commerce has undertaken various efforts to support local business, this latest effort, “Shoreline ToGo”, crosses all local municipal and county “borders” to support local food and beverage providers with a single online hub of delivery and takeout options open to residents.
Launched Apr. 20, Shorelinetogo.ca already has 32 food and beverage businesses listed, a number that grows daily. Published with address, phone number, takeout-delivery menu and hours of operation, restaurants, farm-gate operations and craft beer, wine and cider producers are ready and open to serve. Residents in Lambton Shores, South Huron, Bluewater and North Middlesex can check out the offerings online, order takeout or delivery, and help support the same businesses who have contributed so much to these communities over the years through donations and sponsorship.
Restaurants, farm-gate and beverage producers throughout the market area – Bluewater - Lambton Shores, South Huron, North Middlesex - are encouraged to visit ShorelineToGo.ca to register and showcase their delivery or takeout options. There is no cost to any business to participate and the process is the completion of a simple online form. Any business needing resources or assistance can contact Chamber Manager Susan Mills at email@example.com.
Throughout this area, restaurants, farm-gate and craft beverage providers have contributed hugely to the local economy and the livability of towns and villages. Recovery from the Covid-19 crisis will be in large part energized restaurant owners, chefs, kitchen staff and servers, and the support of local customers.
Youngsters are unleashing their creativity in a variety of ways while staying at home during the pandemic. And a local group would like to capture this creativity for posterity. Especially the stories and artwork that the children, ages 12 and under, are producing right now while they are truly living through history.
The Bayfield Historical Society (BHS) wants to help preserve these memories of what life during the pandemic was like for children.
According to Barb Durand, “The Bayfield Historical Society is asking children in Bayfield and surrounding area to submit written stories and or their artwork for a future collection. We will display this collection in our windows (at the Archives on Main Street) when we are allowed back on the street. Either a scanned copy or their original artwork will be kept at the archives for a future collection. We may also use the material to create a printed book.”
Durand, who looks after publications for the BHS, notes that, this is not a contest but a collection that will document the children’s stories. She asks that the children sign their artwork or story on their cover page and on the back cover list their age and school.
“We will ask for the submissions when the time comes for us to re-open. We are documenting history. Thank-you and wishing all families to stay safe and healthy,” Durand concluded.
For more information on this BHS project please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
IMPAIRED DRIVING CHARGE
Officers with the Ontario Provincial Police Huron Detachment responded to a call in Bayfield on the morning of Sunday, June 28 after receiving reports that an SUV had driven through the beach access barrier at the Cameron and Tuyll Street intersection, proceeded over the cliff estimated to be a drop of about 15 metres, and ended up on the beach below. The officers who assisted the driver noticed that the person had signs of alcohol impairment. Breath samples later indicated that the driver was above the legal limit. The driver, a 41- year-old London woman, has been charged with impaired driving. Her licence was suspended for 90 days and her vehicle impounded. She is scheduled to appear in court on Oct. 5. (With files from the London Free Press) (Photo by Shauna Wentzell)