Haldimand Museums Reopen to the Public

Haldimand Museums is excited to announce the reopening of its three sites to the public following recent pandemic closures.

As of Tuesday July 27, Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum in Selkirk and Edinburgh Square Heritage and Cultural Centre in Caledonia will be open to visitors, along with the already-reopened Heritage Centre located in the Cayuga Public Library.

Residents and visitors are encouraged to check out a diverse range of on-site and online programming and activities for the summer and fall, including:

You Can’t Live Without It, the newest exhibit at the Heritage Centre—located at 19 Talbot Street, Cayuga—runs until September 30 and highlights the history of advertising and how this form of communication was and is used by businesses to promote their wares and activities.

On August 18 at 1:00 pm, join Heritage Centre staff via Zoom for the presentation Historical Kitchen Gardens, which looks at how early settlers tended their kitchen gardens, a vital part of their families’ survival. Advance registration at www.link.haldimandcounty.ca.

Edinburgh Square Heritage and Cultural Centre (80 Caithness Street, Caledonia) tips its cap to the history of headgear with A Head for Fashion, an exhibition featuring some very unique hats, their significance and the stories they tell.

Edinburgh Square will also be offering in-person its popular summer Discovery Days workshops for children during the month of August – from arts and science to mystery and mayhem. Check out www.link.haldimandcounty.ca for a complete list of Discovery Days programs and to register.

Stop by the Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum to experience The Life and Times of Lyric Poet Wilson MacDonald, with displays highlighting the history of rural education and the heritage of the surrounding community. This original one-room school house is located at 3513 Rainham Road, Selkirk.

Registration for all Haldimand Museums programs and special events is open, and residents and visitors can reserve their space using the County’s online reservation system www.link.haldimandcounty.ca or by visiting the Haldimand County office in Cayuga.

Pandemic-related protocols which allow patrons to safely explore our local arts, heritage and culture remain in place. Visitors to Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum and Edinburgh Square Heritage and Cultural Centre will be required to wear a non-medical face mask and physical distance while on site. Visitors are encouraged to book their visit in advance where possible. A maximum number of four patrons may be admitted at one time, with each visit limited to 45 minutes. Visitors without a prior reservation may be admitted if capacity allows.

At this time, the archives and reference collections located within the Haldimand Museums sites and all in-person services will remain closed until further notice. These services continue to be available upon request through email at museums@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Paddle Art Tour Haldimand (PATH) an Ideal Way to Enjoy Local Talent in Parks Throughout the County

Haldimand County is pleased to announce the official launch of its newest outdoor public art initative on Saturday, July 10.

The Paddle Art Tour Haldimand (PATH) is a celebration of the municipality’s local talent and the importance of the Grand River and Lake Erie to Haldimand County.

Haldimand County residents and visitors will be inspired by 24 unique designs created by 23 local artists who used wooden paddles—hand made by high school students—to create art portraying the area’s natural landscapes, wildlife, history and much more.

The paddles have been installed throughout the County with the generous assistance of Dunnville Silo. Haldimand County also gratefully acknowledges the support of Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) for tourism businesses in southern Ontario in completing the project.

For those interested in a self-guided tour of the PATH, a map of the locations, as well as contest information for anyone who manages to visit all or most of the sites, can be found on the County’s website. Printed copies of the map may be picked up at the Haldimand County Administration Building, Libraries or by calling 905-318-5932 extension 6370.

When you are out enjoying these public spaces, please comply with current public health orders and maintain physical distancing at all times.

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 County Launches Outdoor Dining Campaign

With restrictions being lifted, and the summer season well underway,  Haldimand County is pleased to highlight all the amazing outdoor dining options available throughout the County via an upcoming social media campaign.

The campaign, taking place over the next several weeks, will promote the various outdoor dining options,  and can be found at tourismhaldimand.ca. This new landing page features an interactive map and highlights all the participating locations.

“The hospitality sector including restaurants have struggled throughout the pandemic . With the recent announcement of the Province moving into stage two, we believe that it is now more important than ever to remind local residents that all of their favorite dining experiences are opening up again” said Lidy Romanuk, Manager of Economic Development and Tourism.

With over 30 patios, food trucks, and outdoor windows, serving ice cream made locally, Lake Erie perch, and everything in between, there is always a new experience around the corner.

To browse the featured outdoor dining listings and explore the interactive map, visit tourismhaldimand.ca. Stay updated with new additions on our Tourism Instagram and Facebook. For additional information, or if you want to add your business to the local directory,  contact opportunity@haldimandcounty.on.ca or 905-318-5932 ext. 6331.

When you are out enjoying these public spaces, please comply with current public health orders and maintain physical distancing at all times.

Haldimand County Announces “Out and About in Haldimand” GeoTour

If you are looking for a new local adventure this summer, check out Haldimand County’s first ever GeoTour!

The GeoTour is a real-world, outdoor treasure-hunting game that uses GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific set of GPS coordinates and then attempt to find the geocache (container) hidden at that location.

This is a great activity for any resident, visitor or family that likes the challenge of an outdoor scavenger hunt combined with a chance to check out the County’s beautiful parks and natural areas.

More than twenty geocaches have been tucked into parks and public properties throughout the County. Anyone completing the Tour by December can redeem their ‘passport’ to receive a specially-designed “Out and About In Haldimand” geocoin.

To learn more geocaching and the tour, including a ‘how to’ video, visit https://www.haldimandcounty.ca/festivals-events/2021-geocache/.

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 Museums and Cayuga Secondary School hosting virtual art exhibit, online auction

Haldimand Museums and Cayuga Secondary School’s grade 11 art class have once again partnered to produce a very special exhibit: “We Chair-ish You In Haldimand County”.

This virtual exhibit, which runs May 4 to May 20, displays 17 re-purposed wooden chairs showcasing unique artistic designs produced by Mrs. Lammens’ talented students. Accompanying each chair is an artist statement in which the student conveys the story or idea behind their chair’s distinctive design, including which artist and movement they have chosen to emulate.

These one-of-a-kind chairs will be available to the public through an online auction; bidders have from Monday, May 10 through Thursday, May 20 at 4:30 pm to place their bids.

In 2019, the “We Chair-ish You in Haldimand County” event raised over $1,000. Once again this year all proceeds will benefit future exhibitions and program development at Haldimand Museums.

To view the virtual exhibition and take part in the auction, visit the County’s Heritage & Culture web page.

For further information, contact the Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum at 905-776-3319 or wmacdonald.museum@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Haldimand Museums Celebrate Museum Month With Virtual Presentations, Exhibits

May is Museum Month in Ontario and Haldimand Museums is proud to announce its ‘virtual’ return to monthly presentations via ZOOM, beginning May 12, 2021 and continuing through July.

Special presentations will be led by Heritage Centre Curator, Karen Richardson, and highlight topics like Famous Canadian Mothers, The Life and Times of Peter Lymburner Robertson (the Canadian inventor of the Robertson screwdriver) and You Can’t Live Without It, a look at the impact of advertising through the centuries.

Individual interested in attending may view the full program descriptions and register through the County’s program registration portal.

For more information on virtual museum programming, contact the Heritage Centre at 905-318-5932 ext. 6613 or e-mail museum.archives@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

While museums are closed for in-person service due to COVID-19 restrictions, staff remain available to assist with research inquiries via the contacts listed above.

Haldimand County Celebrates Black History Month With Special Presentation On Canfield’s Ties To Underground Railroad

February is Black History Month, and Haldimand Museums and Heritage Haldimand have partnered to present an online historical telling of black freedom seekers who came to Canfield via the Underground Railroad more than 150 years ago.

The online presentation is researched and narrated by well-known local historian Sylvia Weaver, who has been working to share and recognize this important history for years, including through the installation of a Black Settlement Marker and Memorial Plaque in Canfield Park in 2017.

This rich history explored in the presentation is little known to many but tells the story of the village of Canfield, whose residents welcomed slaves fleeing from the United States through the Underground Railroad and worked with the newcomers to build a vibrant community.

Through photos and historical documents, the presentation focuses on the personal stories of the freedom seekers, the significance of the Underground Railroad, the development of the Black community in Canfield and the lives of its families.

Haldimand Museums staff have also prepared an Education Package with reading materials and resources to encourage educators and learners of all ages to better understand this meaningful local history.

All materials will be available for viewing on February 10, 2021, on Haldimand County Heritage & Culture page: HaldimandCounty.ca/heritage-culture.

For more information about Haldimand County’s heritage programming or support materials, please contact Haldimand Museums.

Pictured below (L to R): Donna Ford, President of the Central Ontario Network for Black History and Sylvia Weaver, historian and member of Heritage Haldimand during the 2017 black settlement market and memorial plaque unveiling.