DARRYL KNIGHT The Standard
UXBRIDGE: It was another banner year at Woodnewton as the former cross country ski club paid host to a pair of great outdoor events.
Located on Conc. 6 between Hwy. 47 and Durham Rd. 21, the season at Woodnewton kicked off with an Ontario Cup mountain biking event in April.
The event attracted more than 500 riders from across Ontario to the municipality, raising hundreds of dollars in support of Canadian Tire Jumpstart’s North Durham chapter.
In August, Woodnewton played host to the third annual Mudnewton mud run.
The event has seen significant local growth since its launch in 2011. According to organizer Erin Bennett, approximately 20 per cent of the particpants from this past year’s run hailed from Uxbridge, up from just one per cent in 2011.
The event was hugely successful, raising $3,500 in support of Jumpstart North Durham and drawing families of competitors from across the province from as far away as Sarnia, with many raving about the natural beauty of the Uxbridge countryside.
"Everyone we talked to loved the event. The biggest complaint we heard was that there isn’t a hotel in Uxbridge, but that’s probably for another council meeting," added Mr. Bennett.
In total the events raised more than $4,000 in support of Jumpstart, which provides the opportunity for sports and recreation to families in need. According to Mr. Bennett, the funds raised through the two Woodnewton events accounted for ten per cent of the local contribution towards Jumpstart.
A planned third event - a cross country meet hosted by local elementary schools- was unfortunately derailed due to insurance issues with the Durham District School Board, as organizer Andy Luukonen explained.
Mayor Gerri Lynn O’Connor congratulated the pair for the success of their events, but added that the events at Woodnewton, as well as the CMX motocross races in Zephyr will both potentially have zoning issues to deal with going forward.
However, Township Clerk Debbie Leroux clarified that those events should be dealt with through the township’s Special Event By-Law, which is tentatively scheduled to be brought before council at their meeting on Monday, Nov. 18.
With both events at Woodnewton raising funds for Jumpstart, Mayor O’Connor credited the pair for their commitment to keeping Uxbridge residents active.
"I couldn’t think of a more worthy organization than Jumpstart to make the contribution to, $4,000 is a great amount for Jumpstart," Mayor O’Connor said. "It’s all about the kids, and we have to look after them because, they’re our future."
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