DAN CEARNS The Standard
SCUGOG: The Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation made the Christmas season brighter for 29 organizations at their annual Christmas Cheque Presentation and Reception, on Thursday, December 13th.
At the event, the Mississaugas, through their charitable arm the MSIFN Donations Committee, made donations totaling $366,750 to organizations.
The biggest gifts went to the Port Perry Hospital Foundation and the Oak Ridges Hospice of Durham, which each received $100,000 cheques.
“The Oak Ridges Hospice, as many of you know, still does not exist, except as our vision, our dream. We have plans, and we have property, so next year [there will be] shovels in the ground, and with this help, it’s going to be amazing,” Anne Wright, from the Oak Ridges Hospice of Durham, said at the event.
As well, the Scugog Council for the Arts (SCA) received $20,000.
“We’re very, very happy to receive this,” Marion Meyers from the SCA said.
WindReach Farm Foundation received $5,000.
“This event is always a very special one for me every year, to hear about all the good work everybody is doing in the community. It’s heartwarming. Your generosity and support is also heartwarming, so I’m very, very grateful,” Carol Dahlquist, WindReach Farm Foundation Executive Director, told the crowd at the event.
Community Care Durham, Prince Albert Public School, Prince Albert United Church and Scugog Island United Church each received $2,000. Community Living Durham North received $2,500, and Big Brothers Big Sisters North Durham received $2,750. The Scugog Island Community Hall received $3,500.
As well, Feed the Need Durham received a $5,000 cheque.
DURHAM: Plans are underway for the 6th Annual Celebrate Agriculture event, to be held Thursday, October 24th, 2019.
Celebrate Agriculture is an evening of delicious local food, fun and fellowship, for Durham’s agricultural community. The evening also recognizes & awards farm families, agri-businesses and individuals that have contributed to the advancement of the industry, locally, provincially and/or nationally.
Another important aspect of the evening is the ability to raise funds, through the contributions received from our industry partners. Proceeds from this event are used to support Durham Farm Connections’ numerous agricultural education programs and events. Programs are designed to enhance the knowledge, understanding and appreciation of agriculture and the agri-food industry in Durham Region and throughout Ontario.
Durham Farm Connections invites you to join us in 2019, as a sponsor, an auction item donor, an award nominator, a volunteer and/or as a participant. Be recognized as an industry partner, throughout 2019 on our website, with the All About Farming trailer, as it travels throughout Ontario and in the evening’s full colour program.
In the coming months, during our organization’s 2019 program and budget planning, please consider Farm Connections, and also consider submitting a nomination(s) for one or more of the awards categories.
Stay tuned for upcoming opportunities to join us in 2019, found in the New Year, on the Durham Farm Connections’ website at this web address: www.durhamfarmconnections.ca, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
We look forward to your participation in Celebrate Agriculture 2019 ! Don’t miss out!
The 2019 Durham Farm Connections Celebrate Agriculture Committee
The holiday season is a special and spiritual time of year. It can sometimes be easy to get lost in the more commercial aspects of the holiday season, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with shopping for gifts that will show your loved ones how much you love and appreciate them.
For those who want to focus back on the spiritual side of this special time of year, the following suggestions can help in those efforts.
The Gospels of Mark and Luke offer differing accounts of the birth of Jesus Christ. Both indicate that Jesus was born to Mary, who was engaged to Joseph, a carpenter. Mary became pregnant through immaculate conception, as she was a virgin when visited by an angel who informed her that she was to carry God’s son. At the time of Christ’s birth, all Jewish people had to be counted by Roman soldiers for tax purposes. That required people to return to their places of birth. As a result, Mary and Joseph set out on an arduous journey to Bethlehem. Upon arriving in Bethlehem, inns had no vacancies, but Mary and Joseph were given shelter in a stable where Jesus was ultimately born.
Churches traditionally hold religious services on Christmas Eve and Christmas. These services are joyful expressions of faith, music and community spirit. But Christmas mass is not the only time to head to church. During Advent, the four-week period preceding Christmas, Catholics prepare and repent. Advent calendars help count down the days until Christmas.
Make a nativity scene the primary focus of Christmas decorations and encourage children to play with the figures and act out the Christmas story.
Families can focus their energies on faithful endeavors and the spirit of giving that’s synonymous with the season. Do good deeds for others, embrace peace and love and share special time with others.
Spread the holiday spirit through song. Get together with a group of friends or neighbors and go door-to-door, or hold a caroling performance at a centralized location. Select religious hymns, but also include some secular favorites.
The holiday season is a great time of year to reconnect with one’s faith and spirituality.
UXBRIDGE: Durham police have arrested and charged three people after a home invasion occurred in Uxbridge.
According to police, on Sunday, December 9th, at approximately 2 a.m., a group of five youths entered an occupied home in the Reach Street and Testa Road area. The suspects entered a bedroom and attacked a teenage victim, with an expandable baton and metal pipe. An adult in the residence heard the suspects, and then attempted to push them out of the house. A brief scuffle occurred before the suspects fled the scene.
The three people arrested include: 18 year-old Abdullah Haq of Markham, 18 year-old Jahid Golan of Uxbridge, and a 17-year-old Uxbridge man. The trio are facing charges of Break and Enter with Intent; Assault with a Weapon; Disguise with Intent and Conspiracy to Commit an Indictable Offence.
Anyone with new information about this investigation is asked to contact D/Cst. Brown of North Division, at 1-888-579-1520 ext. 2675. As always, people can also make anonymous tips to Crime Stoppers, at 1-800-222-8477.
PC Government Returns to Legislature to Keep the Lights On for Christmas Proposed legislation introduced to protect health and safety of Ontarians
The Ontario government is introducing legislation that will prevent large scale power outages in Durham and across Ontario by quickly addressing the collective bargaining deadlock between Ontario Power Generation (OPG) and the Power Workers’ Union (PWU).
“People across Ontario need and deserve a reliable power supply, especially over the winter months,” said MPP Lindsey Park. “Right now, that’s at risk.”
A work stoppage at OPG would significantly impact Ontario’s electricity supply. If there is a strike, the Independent Electricity System Operator concluded, Ontario would not have the electricity needed to meet consumer demand resulting in brownouts and blackouts across the province.
“We want to see a fair deal reached between the parties,” said Laurie Scott, Minister of Labour. “Our proposed legislation will remove the risk of widespread power outages and allow dispute resolution to happen appropriately.”
The collective agreement between OPG and PWU expired on March 31, 2018. A tentative agreement was rejected by a majority of employees represented by the PWU on August 9, 2018. Following further negotiations, the agreement was put to a second ratification vote, which was also rejected. The parties are in a deadlock and PWU gave strike notice on December 14, 2018.
“We are taking swift and decisive action to keep the lights on for Ontario families, seniors and businesses,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines. “We will not allow families and seniors to dwell in the dark or go without heat this winter and we will do whatever is required to protect the health and safety of the people of Ontario.”
The proposed amendments to the Labour Relations Act, 1995 would prohibit and stop any strikes or lockouts between OPG and PWU for the current round of bargaining and send all matters in dispute to a mediator-arbitrator for a fair dispute resolution process.
The holiday season is not complete without music. Holiday hits play in shopping malls, and families often trim the tree to their favorite albums.
Even if Elvis’ ‘Blue Christmas’ or Johnny Mathis’ ‘Do You Hear What I Hear’ reign supreme in your household, it can be interesting to learn about some of the other songs made famous this time of year.
Classic carols may be the first Christmas songs that come to mind. However, less than a quarter century ago a pop singer managed to contribute to the holiday music pantheon. Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want for Christmas is You,’ released in 1994, is considered to be the most popular modern Christmas standard. With global sales exceeding 16 million copies, the song is one of Carey’s biggest hits.
‘Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,’ with its warning to children to be nice since Santa is keeping tabs on kids’ behavior, has helped children tow the line for decades. Songwriter James ‘Haven’ Gillespie was asked to pen the tune during one of the darker times in his life. Gillespie was jobless and poor and his brother had just passed away, hardly inspiration for a Christmas tune. However, after thinking about the memories he shared with his brother, Gillespie was able to pull together an upbeat and catchy classic, changing his life for the good.
Even though ‘Silent Night’ is the most recorded Christmas song in history, another tune holds the title of the best-selling holiday standard of all time. ‘White Christmas’ was written in 1942 and reminisces about an old-fashioned Christmas celebration. The version recorded by Bing Crosby has estimated sales in excess of 100 million copies worldwide, according to ‘The Guinness Book of World Records.’ There are various accounts as to when and where Irving Berlin wrote the song. Some state he did so at a hotel in Hollywood, while others say it was the Arizona Biltmore. Wherever Berlin happened to be when writing the tune, there’s no doubt he was pining for the quintessential white Christmas.
The song was written for the 1942 movie ‘Holiday Inn,’ starring Crosby and Fred Astaire. It became an instant classic and remains Crosby’s best-selling recording. Some of the most recent versions of the song have been recorded by Pentatonix, Sara McLachlan and Laura Pusini.
Christmas songs remain near and dear to people’s hearts, and a few of these beloved songs have interesting back stories.
SCUGOG: New growth and expansion for Durham Farmers’ County Co-operative officially became reality with the recent acquisition of Wright’s Feeds ‘N Needs in Blackstock, on November 1st.
Wright’s Feeds ‘N Needs owner-operators, Harold and Melanie Wright, saw this opportunity: to sell and enhance their long-standing, family-run business; realign in a changing market, to keep the operation current and competitive; and provide a larger support system and sales force.
“We had been looking for a way to slow down our direct involvement and put plans in place to eventually retire. This opportunity to amalgamate with DFCC was a good fit for us, and will benefit all parties, including the agricultural community of Blackstock and surrounding areas that we have been proud to serve for over thirty-four years.” says Harold Wright.
The Wrights operation is located just 30 kilometres north of Durham Farmers’ Orono location. Equipped with an eight tonne Krauss fertilizer blender system, the well-established farm, garden, and home retail business provides local customers with much of the same products already offered to Durham Farmers’ Co-operative customers in Orono and Grafton.
Murray Lobb, general manager of the co-operative, sees it as a natural extension of the business. “I am confident the transition will be a ‘move-in friendly’ experience for both of our businesses and our customers,” says Lobb.
Wright’s Feeds ‘N Needs will continue to operate under the same name and brand that customers have come to associate with this location, maintaining its existing employees, as well as the Shur-Gain livestock feed, farm, home and garden supplies that customers are accustomed to. Harold and Melanie Wright plan to stay involved, as managers of the business, throughout the transition period. Their mission and values they stand by, in the agricultural retail world, will continue to be important to the success of this new venture.
Durham Farmers’ County Co-operative has more than 4,500 active members, in and around the Durham region, from its two locations in Orono and Grafton. The co-operative was established in 1947 and provides agronomy, feed products and services, and consumer farm and home products, from its two ACE Country and Garden stores. Durham Farmers’ County Co-operative is a member-owner of GROWMARK, Inc., and markets products and services under the FS banner.
Wright’s Feeds ‘N Needs is a family-run business, serving farmers and rural residents in Durham region, from its 2000 square foot retail store, adjoining warehouse, and its fertilizer operation, located in Blackstock. They offer livestock and equine feeds, crop inputs, farm supplies, and home products, including pet and wildlife supplies, plus lawn and garden.
Visit: www.wrightsfeeds.ca to learn more about them.
The Canadian Wheat New Crop Missions 2018 are well underway. These are missions organized and coordinated through three organizations: Cereals Canada, Canadian International Grains Institute (Cigi) and the Canadian Grain Commission. They take place over six weeks, in November and December, and include missions to 17 of our top markets for wheat and durum. I feel honoured to be one of the farmers who will be representing all western Canadian farmers during these missions.
I am currently part of the delegation that is focused on Canada’s leading durum markets, including Morocco, Algeria and Italy. It is not an easy time for durum growers today, with durum prices well below the cost of production.
The primary goal of the missions is to inform our top customers about the quality of the 2018 harvest, and how they can expect Canadian wheat and durum to perform in their mills, bakeries and pasta, couscous and Asian noodle plants. The missions are also about maintaining relationships and dialog with customers. These relationships, which are important during times of normal trade, become even more critical when issues arise that impede the free flow of agricultural commodities.
Canadian exports of durum account for approximately 50% of the world’s durum trade. So, when the demand for Canadian exports are down the world price follows. And demand is down in two of our leading markets – Italy and Algeria. In Italy, we are seeing the impact of the protectionist country of origin labelling laws and the campaign against Canadian durum being run by the Italian farm group Coldiretti. Algeria has focused on their larger than normal domestic crop, to serve their domestic market, but this durum is not of the same quality as Canadian.
Saskatchewan produces approximately 80 percent of the durum grown in Canada, so the participation of a Saskatchewan farmer is a natural fit. The goal of our trip is to re-enforce the value of Canadian durum, in markets that are not buying like they have in the past, and to support customers, like Morocco, who remain loyal customers.
This is the first year Sask Wheat has attended the missions, and I am looking forward to telling a Saskatchewan grain farmer’s story to our customers.
The missions give farmers the opportunity to speak directly to our customers, letting them know how the decisions we make on our farms maintains the Canadian brand of clean, consistent, quality wheat.
When the mission visits Italy, we will be meeting with customers one-on-one to help restore the free flow of trade, in this important durum market. We will also be meeting with farm groups in Italy, who support science-based rules of trade. The issue of Italian country of origin labelling for pasta will be discussed, as will Italian concerns about pesticide residues. On the latter issue, farmers can do a great deal to keep markets open, by following the best management practices to limit residues and mycotoxins.
I will also have the opportunity to talk about the sustainability of modern Canadian agriculture. Canadian farmers have a good story to tell. Modern agricultural practices are reducing fuel use, improving soil health, reducing erosion, sequestering carbon, and allowing us to produce crops even in drought conditions. At the same time, we are increasing the quality of the crop we deliver into international markets.
The new crop missions include the entire Canadian value chain. The Canadian industry cooperating in customer support and development efforts. The voice of farmers is a critical component of the presentations. The missions also allow farmers to hear questions and concerns from customers’ first-hand. This is extremely important, especially in a growing protectionist trade environment.
DURHAM: What better way to kick off the holiday season than a visit to a local tree farm? Spademan Tree Farm in Port Perry sells 100 per cent naturally grown trees without the use of pesticides, herbicides or any other chemicals, and has been in business for over 35 years.
Prestonvale Tree Farms, located in Courtice, is another great place to buy trees in Durham. They currently sell a large selection of fraser fir, balsam fir, spruce and pine trees.
For more information, visit SpademanTreeFarm.com and PrestonvaleTreeFarms.com.
You can also take a trip to Canadian Tire in Port Perry and support the 1st Port Perry Scouts by picking up your real Christmas tree there. The Scouts will have Christmas trees on sale until December 23rd. See ad below for hours.
KAWARTHA LAKES: The Shorelines Slots at Kawartha Downs will re-open to the public as of this Wednesday December 19th, 2018.
Laurie Scott MPP for Kawartha Lakes stated, “I would like to acknowledge the work done by the provincial government, Ontario Gaming East LP and Kawartha Downs to ensure the re-opening of the slots at Kawartha Downs. I would also like to thank the loyal customers of Shorelines Slots and the community of Cavan Monaghan for their patience and support throughout this process.”
Shorelines Slots looks forward to once again welcoming the public to Kawartha Downs.