Mayor's Message - June 11, 2017

Posted on Monday June 12, 2017

Good morning, Bonjour

A beautiful weekend, we see plenty of activity all about town and the tourism spike is evident everywhere I turn. Speaking of tourists man oh man did Midlands butter tart festival draw a crowd or what !  Beyond the town of Midland the impact of the event was felt in all of our local communities.  The importance of all four communities working together on efforts such as economic development and tourism becomes more and more evident as these events unfold.   Upcoming events such as our All things Canadian weekend, the Urban Slide, our splashpad and yes the big yellow duck that is coming will continue attract tourists to our area!

Anyone following the yellow duck controversy most likely recognize that I am on the opposite side of the conversation. There are those that feel the spending on the duck was frivolous and unwarranted. For me this is not a spend, it is a tourism investment . The Duck will attract tourists to all six communities that it will visit. We know from past events of a similar nature that the economic spinoff to each community will be 20,000 visitors or more spending on average $50 per person in our local stores, restaurants, bars, gas stations etc., in total the economic benefit to our local area will be north of a million dollars.  Multiple this by six communities you can easily see the economic lift is north of six million dollars, the HST on six million is $780,000 of which the Province gets back $327,000.  So for an investment of $127,000 for the duck we see 6 million in tourism spending, the government gets their $127,000 back plus an additional $200,000. Beyond the financial numbers, 25% of our workforce are employed in the tourism sector, novelties and unique attractions such as the duck and butter tarts ensure that this type of employment continues.  Personally, I am all in on the duck and I am also ok with sticky fingers from butter tarts ! 

I received the email below from Jack Charlebois (former resident and former Midland Town council member).  It is always refreshing to see our town through the eyes of those whom come to visit us.  Below is Jack’s email to his circle of friends.

MORNING ALL.     GOOD OLD PENETANGUISHENE.         SHE HAS , DONE IT AGAIN.   WATCHED TOWN PLANNER, ANDREA BETTY,   BEING INTERVIEWED , BY OLD VR.  COUPLE OF NIGHTS AGO.    SHE EXPLAINED , NEW 150 ANNIVERSARY FLAGS, AND CANADIAN FLAGS HAVE ARRIVED.   MENTIONED NEW FLOWER HANGING BASKETS , ARE UP.    THURSDAY NANCY ,AND I DROVE OVER TO PENETANG.   IF YOU HAVE THE TIME, MIGHT WANT TO CHECK IT OUT.   FROM THE ANGELS TO THE TOWN DOCK.   EVERY POLE ON MAIN STREET, HAS 150 ANNIVERSARY AND  REGULAR CANADIAN FLAGS FLYING.  AMIDST BEAUTIFUL ,MULTI COLOURED HANGING PLANTS.    STREET SWEEPER ,DID THE JOB IT WAS MADE FOR.   SPIFFY CLEAN ROAD.   WHAT AN IMPRESSIVE PICTURE,  FOR TOURISTS.   SPOKE TO LOCALS AT TOWN DOCK.  THEY REMINDED ME OF CHAMPLAIN, ROTARY PARK.   NEW AMPHITHEATRE , WHERE EVERY FRIDAY, FARMERS MARKET, LIVE ENTERTAINMENT BANDS, OUTDOOR MOVIES..   GIANT WATER SLIDE , DOWN OWEN ST COMING BACK.  .  SPLASH PAD, ON WATER FRONT.    NEW LARGE GAZEBO OUT ON DOCK.   NICE TO SEE GEORGIAN QUEEN, DOCKED BACK AT HER BIRTH.   THEY SURE SPOKE HIGHLY, OF THEIR TOWN.   BEING, A BORN AND RAISED PENETANGER.    I WAS VERY PROUD OF THE MANY ACTIVITIES GOING ON.   WELL, THE BEAT GOES ON.    JACK

Jack’s email reminded me that when I saw our town on the news regarding the flags on our Main Street that I wanted to challenge all of you to fly a Canadian Flag or Canada 150 flag at your residence and/or place of business in celebration of our 150th birthday.  Let’s make Penetanguishene the most visibly proud community in Canada.  Jan and I our buying ours tomorrow, please join us in doing so.

Speaking of our 150th, please do come and celebrate Canada’s 150th Anniversary at our Museums All Things Wheels Parade on July 1st. Meeting at the curling club parking lot of the Parc Rotary Champlain Wendat Park, participants will ride through the park dressed in their best Canada 150th theme and end at the Penetanguishene Centennial Museum & Archives.  Participants may come with any non-motorized vehicle to join the parade; including  bicycles, tricycles, strollers, wagons, penny farthings, unicycles, or scooters. Prizes will be rewarded for best Canada 150 theme in four different age groups which include: up to age 4, ages 5-7, ages 8-10 and ages 11 and up. The winners will be announced at the museum at the beginning of our Canada Day event at 11 a.m. and all participants will be given a voucher for a free hamburger or hot dog. To register for this event, please visit the museum’s website at www.pencenmuseum.com or call at 705-549-2150, registration is FREE.

With the awesome weather we’ve been experiencing and the new additions to the Rotary Champlain Wendat Park I know everyone’s eager to check out the Entertainment Programming for Friday nights throughout the summer at the Amphitheatre! Everything from home growers, artisans, local produces, crafts, music and movie night in the park! Take a look at the full 2017 Entertainment Programming schedule attached for details. I  can share that our kick off this past Friday evening saw a few hundred folks enjoying the park, the music and the vendors.   From all reports it was a smashing success !

The local, annual, garden tour will continue to grow in 2017. Thanks to a group of dedicated volunteers, the garden tour will move forward as the Georgian Bay Garden Tour. The tour will continue to be on the second Saturday of July, with the 1st Annual Georgian Bay Garden Tour on July 8, 2017. This event holds the same promise of an exciting summer’s day filled with natural beauty, fun, and learning that has made the tour an important area event for more than 20 years. All tour proceeds will benefit the Georgian Bay Cancer Support Centre, a place of hope and vitality for those living with cancer, their families and caregivers. For more information about the tour or to learn how you can be involved please contact us at gbgardentour@gmail.com or visit our Facebook page Georgian Bay Garden Tour.

My Week to Be:

Sunday June 11

I have no scheduled meetings for today.

Monday, June 12

In the morning I meet with the Deputy Mayor Dubeau and Jeff Lees, CAO, for a breakfast update meeting.

After my breakfast meeting I meet to review the agenda for County Council and Committee of the Whole. Following County agenda review, I attend an agenda review for the Town of Penetanguishene Council and Committee of the Whole.

For the afternoon, at 1:00 p.m., I attend an Economic Development Planning Meeting. Afterwards I attend a Newsletter preparation meeting and a weekly event and media update meeting.  At 3:30 p.m. I have a conference call to review details for the upcoming Local Food Forum and at 4 I join in on the grand opening of the new Guest House facility in Midland.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017.

At 8:30 a.m. I have a meeting for the Grant Program Task Force.

9:00 a.m. County Council and Committee of the Whole meet.

Meetings for the afternoon include an Economic Development meeting and a team meeting.

Wednesday, June 14

Those who know me or follow my post know that I am quite passionate about efforts that assist in ending homelessness, creating more affordable housing and providing a hand up to those who may struggle for a variety of different reasons at various points in their lives. Part of this overall discussion is food insecurity.  I am happy to report that since our Eat The Math efforts in December 2016 (where we lived off a food box for a week), Karma, the County of Simcoe, the Health Unit, and the United Way, have continued to come to the table to address the food insecurity that Eat the Math effort highlighted.  Knowing that critical conversations are what will lead the way in strengthening our communities' access to and production of healthy, local foods, we are hosting our Food Security Forum, featuring a poignant roster of speakers and interactive brainstorming on mutual next steps.  I will be attending the Local Food Forum Event where I  am Co-MC along with Erin Chapelle. The event will take place at the Simcoe County Museum and is an opportunity to join local planning partners, service providers, no-profits, and community leaders in discussing action-oriented opportunities towards improving household food security in Simcoe County. Please see the attached should you be interested in joining in on the day.

At 6:00 p.m. Council and Committee of the Whole meet in Council Chambers.

You can access the agendas for Council and Committee of the Whole by navigating to the Town’s website or clicking the link provided: http://www.penetanguishene.ca/en/calendar/council

To watch Council and Committee of the Whole via live stream click the link provided: http://www.penetanguishene.ca/en/townhall/test-council-page.asp

Thursday June 15

The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) hosts a board dinner at 6:00 p.m.

Friday June 16

I attend the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) Board of Directors Meeting.

Saturday June 17

Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to noon at the Midland Town Dock for the international men’s march to stop violence against women. I’ll be attending and fundraising for the Walk A Mile In Her Shoes event. The Midland Y’s Men’s Club will be hosting the second annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes event in support of La Maison Rosewood Shelter. Men and boys will come together and walk in a pair of beautiful red heels, to raising awareness about violence against women. I challenge all the males in our community to come out to show your support in helping end violence against women.

Enjoy this beautiful day everyone !

Mayor Gerry