Haldimand Playbook is this Summer’s Source for All Things Recreation, Leisure and Culture

If you’re looking to make new summer memories, the Haldimand Playbook—which hit resident mailboxes this week and is also available online—is your guide to our County and all it has to offer.

The Playbook includes information about registering for summer aquatics and camp programming, heritage and culture workshops and Library programming.

If you’d rather take a less scheduled approach to your plans, visit our splash pads or wading pool to cool off on a hot day. Enjoy our parks and greenspaces including skate parks, ball diamonds, tennis and multi-use courts and picnic areas in several communities as well as disc golf in Caledonia’s LaFortune Park. Visit one of our many trails and pathways throughout the County and along the Grand River.

If tennis is something you’ve always wanted to try, the County is hosting an Introduction to Tennis program, offered in Caledonia, Dunnville and Jarvis. Check the County’s website for more details.

For anyone looking to explore the farthest reaches of the County there are two new tours: the geotour is suitable for adventurers of all ages and skill levels, with twenty geocaches stashed throughout Haldimand, while the public art tour is a County-wide display of 24 handmade wooden paddles painted by local artists. Details are available online and both tours include ongoing contests.

Remember to stop and enjoy a meal or snack at our local eateries, or hit the local shops to experience the County’s many unique offerings as you build out your Haldimand experience.

As always during these unusual times, we ask that you follow the current provincial and public health COVID-19 guidelines when visiting our parks, facilities and trails or participating in programming and activities. Please be respectful of others and do not litter; dispose of garbage or take out what you brought in.

The Playbook also includes a survey—on the back cover or online—about how the County can better stay connected to you. Please let us know how we can best communicate with you!

Visit Haldimand County’s Administration Building or Library Branches for your free copy of the Playbook, or check out the County’s website at https://www.haldimandcounty.ca/recreation-guide/.

Haldimand & Norfolk Counties Opt Out of Canborough Landfill Facility Proposal

Haldimand County Council and Norfolk County Council, as joint owners of the Canborough Landfill Facility located at 499 James Road Dunnville, considered an unsolicited proposal made by a private sector entity for the use of the property.  After deliberations, both Councils agreed to not accept the proposal. In accordance with the conditions of the offer, the details will remain confidential.

Haldimand County Public Library Announces 2021 One Book, One Haldimand Reading Selection

Join fellow Haldimand County readers by participating in this year’s One Book One Haldimand program!

One Book One Haldimand is an annual community-wide reading program through which individuals across Haldimand County are encouraged to read a selected Canadian title and join the author and other community members for a virtual reading and Q&A in early December.

This year’s selection, Precious Cargo, written by Canadian author Craig Davidson, was a finalist for Canada Reads in 2018 and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. The book follows a young Craig Davison before he became a critically acclaimed writer.

“Broke and living alone while trying unsuccessfully to write, Davison plucked a flyer out of his mailbox. It read “Bus Drivers Wanted,” and it marked his first step towards an unlikely new career: driving a school bus for kids with special needs. Fortified only with a sense of humour similar to that of his charges, a creative approach to the challenge of driving an awkward vehicle while corralling a rowdy gang of schoolchildren, and unexpected reserves of empathy, Davison takes us along for the ride.” – Inside Cover

Copies of Precious Cargo are available now at all library branches. Individuals who wish to read the book may call 289-674-0400 to arrange a curbside pickup.

More information about the virtual author visit will be shared and posted on the library’s website and social medial pages in late October.

Share your love of reading and community by participating in One Book One Haldimand 2021. For more information or to suggest a title by an Ontario author for 2022, please contact Katrina Krupicz, Community Outreach Coordinator at 905-318-5932 ext. 6118.

Haldimand County, OPP, GRCA Encourage Water Safety

Haldimand County, OPP and the Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA) encourages all local residents and visitors to the County to take personal responsibility and make water safety for themselves and their children a priority this summer. It is extremely important for everyone to be aware of safe boating and swimming practices while enjoying the waterways in Haldimand County.

On Tuesday June 8, 2021 at 2:53 p.m., OPP responded to the dam area of the Grand River in Caledonia for a report of a dangerous condition. A concerned passerby noticed a group of youths walking along and swimming in the dam area.

Investigation revealed the youths entered a prohibited area, marked by red and white danger signs, and into the water. Fortunately no one was injured and all parties were accounted for. Tragedy can happen very quickly and the danger of the waters should never be underestimated.

Every year, emergency service personnel respond to many marine related calls including stranded boaters, people fishing or swimming in unsafe areas. Many times, misadventure can lead to tragedy.

It can’t be stressed enough that everyone using the waterways understand the importance of not swimming or boating in prohibited areas. The dam areas in Dunnville and Caledonia are often used by individuals but the water conditions are extremely dangerous.

’Run of the river’ dams, like those in Caledonia and Dunnville may not be as visible from upstream and pose a great risk to river users who disregard warning signs. Like larger dams, low-head dams can also create an underwater recirculating current downstream that is nearly impossible to escape. This current can be so strong that it has the ability to pull people under water, even while wearing a lifejacket. Never swim, walk on, fish, or boat near these dams.

GRCA dams are marked by red and white danger signs. There are also fences, buoys and booms warning you to keep out. You should always:

  • Stay a safe distance outside of the marked danger areas when fishing, boating and swimming
  • Stay off all dams. Use only approved walkways or observation areas.

All parents and caregivers are encouraged to speak with their children about water safety and the dangers of prohibited areas.

The prevention of drownings requires law enforcement efforts and public education but most importantly, prevention starts with you.

There is no one single cause that leads to drownings but there are common contributors. Basic safety practices such as learning to swim at an early age; wearing a lifejacket or a Personal Flotation Device (PFD) while on a vessel or in water; adult supervision of children while swimming; and not drinking and boating can make the difference between surviving, or not.

OPP is also reminding all boaters to ensure they have all of the required safety equipment on board as well as all the required documents to operate a vessel.

For more information about dam safety, visit the GRCA’s website at www.grandriver.ca/en/our-watershed/safety-around-dams

For more information regarding water safety, visit the Lifesaving Society website at www.lifesavingsociety.com/water-safety

For more information on boating safety, visit the Transport Canada website at www.tc.gc.ca/boatingsafety

Haldimand County Recruiting for New Youth and Seniors Advisory Committees

Haldimand County is launching two new community engagement opportunities for residents who want to get involved: a Youth Advisory Committee and a Seniors Advisory Committee. These Committees will advise Council about issues and policies that impact the quality of life of youth and seniors in the County.

The Youth Advisory Committee is looking for members from ages 16 to 24 years from across the County, while the Seniors Advisory Committee welcomes interested residents 60 years and older. Both Committees will have ten members and will work with staff to establish a vision and work plan with action steps, timelines and outcomes for each term of Council.

Youth Committee members will act as representatives for the County’s youngest residents, advising on ways to enrich and enhance their health and quality of life. Seniors Committee participants will share information about issues impacting seniors while developing recommendations and action plans to build supports for older adults. Both Committee offer opportunities to make new connections, gain knowledge and skills and make a meaningful contribution to Haldimand County.

Applications will be accepted until August 15, 2021. For more information about the committees, application process, terms of reference or the expectations of members, visit www.haldimandcounty.ca/community-partnerships or contact Andrea Moodie at 905-318-5932 Ext. 6119 or amoodie@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Haldimand County Summer Program Registration Opens June 14

Summer is quickly approaching and the Haldimand County Summer Programs Team has been hard at work creating plans for a safe return to day camps and aquatic programs!

This summer will see the return of Camp HaldiFUN, Camp Creative Campers and the Leadership Initiative in a variety of locations: Caledonia, Cayuga, Dunnville, Hagersville and Jarvis.  Fun will be the focus as staff make sure every day at camp is filled with a variety of activities, crafts and games.

If you’re looking to cool off this summer, visit one of the County’s three outdoor pools located in Caledonia, Dunnville and Hagersville for a swim or for some lessons. Watch the Haldimand County website and social media accounts for a pool opening announcement coming soon!

Safety measures related to COVID-19 will be in place to ensure everyone has a safe camp or aquatics experience.

Pre-registration for public and fitness swims will be required again this summer. Residents can book free public/fitness swim slots using the County’s online registration system (link.haldimandcounty.ca) or by calling Haldimand County customer service at (905) 318-5932. Please note there will be an overall reduction in the number of public swim spots available to comply with social distancing requirements, and participants are encouraged to book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

Registration opens on Monday, June 14 for day camps and aquatic programs; you can register by using the County’s online registration system or in-person at the Haldimand County Administration Building in Cayuga.

For more details regarding the camp and swim programs, contact the Summer Coordinators at (905) 318-5932 ext. 8383.

Make a splash this summer!!

Haldimand County to Raise Pride Flag to Recognize Pride Month

At the June 7, 2021 meeting, Haldimand County Council voted unanimously to fly the Pride Flag at the Haldimand County Administration Building for the remainder of June in recognition of Pride Month.

“Haldimand County stands in solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community and supports diversity, equity and inclusivity,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

Council also directed staff to review the existing Flag Protocol Policy, which restricts flags flown at County facilities to the Canadian flag, Provincial and Haldimand County flag, for the potential to allow broader recognition practices for important events and to acknowledge the contributions of community groups in the future.

Haldimand County Expands Fleet with Low Speed Electric Vehicles

Haldimand County has added two low speed electric vehicles to its fleet. The two new vehicles will be used for municipal enforcement and building inspection purposes starting this summer, as well as community events and activities.

The vehicles were purchased using Community Vibrancy Funds, which ensures a 0% impact on the tax levy. Operation of the vehicles will be limited to urban areas where speed limits are 50 km/h or less and to cross roads with a speed limit up to 60 km/h as permitted by a Provincial regulation and a recently enacted Haldimand County By-law.

The new vehicles are quiet, sustainable, exhaust-free and environmentally responsible, requiring a standard 110 volt outlet for charging and a range of 60 km per charge. “The County has acquired two vehicles to demonstrate environmental responsibility and to help reduce our carbon footprint,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

Given the Province’s commitment to new and emerging technologies that can help move people safely, promote transportation modes that are environmentally friendly, reduce air pollution and reliance on conventional fuel, the pilot program will help Haldimand County determine the feasibility of possible future uses.


Haldimand County Public Library offering virtual ‘Paws to Read’ program

Haldimand County Public Library, in partnership with Therapeutic Paws of Canada, is offering an exciting literacy program designed to help children who would benefit from extra practice with their reading.

Children can register for a free 15-minute session to read a book of their choice to a certified team. Paws to Read dogs provide undivided attention to the children as they read aloud.

Studies have shown that reading to dogs encourages confidence and boosts self-esteem in children who struggle to read aloud in class, therefore boosting their literacy.

For the month of June this program is being offered virtually on June 2, June 16 and June 30 starting at 4:00pm. Registration is required and spaces are limited.

For more information or to register please contact Katrina Krupicz, Community Outreach Coordinator at kkrupicz@haldimandcounty.on.ca or 905-318-5932 ext. 6552.

Haldimand, Norfolk Counties Lower Flags To Honour Kamloops Residential School Victims

Haldimand and Norfolk counties will be lowering flags at all public facilities to honour the 215 Indigenous children found buried at a former residential school near Kamloops, BC.

Both counties will lower flags across public facilities from Monday, May 31 to Monday, June 8 in one hour increments to symbolize each of the 215 children whose lives were taken.

“Lowering our flags is one way to recognize this abhorrent tragedy and signify that we stand unified with the Indigenous community in mourning the loss of these children,” said Norfolk County Mayor Kristal Chopp.

Chopp was compelled to act after being contacted by a young resident of Norfolk County, Kasey McDonald – a member of the Turtle Clan and Anishinaabe member of Kettle and Stony Point First Nations. “It is inspirational when young individuals get involved in their community and advocate for things that are important to them, especially regarding a matter of this magnitude,” Chopp noted.

“In the spirit of Kasey’s letter, taking small actions to generate awareness and change on a broader level can have an immeasurable impact,” Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt stated. “By recognizing this tragedy, we can only hope to shine a light on the past in hopes of creating a brighter future,” he added.

Haldimand County logo. A yellow sun rising or setting atop green and blue waves. Haldimand County in black lettering below.