Haldimand Museums Hosting Murder Mystery Cruise August 14

On Wednesday, August 14, Haldimand Museums is hosting its annual Murder Mystery Cruise aboard the Grand River Belle. Attendees will have the opportunity to step back in time and be entertained by a prohibition era-themed mystery.

It’s the 1920’s and prohibition is in full swing. You’ve been invited to an imitate party with local rumrunner kingpin Jay McCoy and his crew aboard his private yacht for an evening cruise down the Grand River. Coming along for the ride is a special shipment of ‘perfectly legal soda pop’ – ok… it’s really bootleg gin, but no really needs to know that…do they?

To help pass the time, the boat doubles as a speakeasy. Everything is going according to plan until someone is murdered. We need your help to solve this crime! Remember: in the criminal world of gangsters, crooked cops, flappers, and rumrunners, everyone is a suspect!

This 2-hour cruise departs from the Big Creek Boat Farm at 7 p.m. Cost is $25.00 per person and includes the cruise and light refreshments. Registration may be completed on-line at www.link.haldimandcounty.ca or in person at any Haldimand County office using program code 8400.

For details regarding the Murder Mystery Cruise, contact Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre at 905-765-3134 or by e-mail at museums@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Haldimand Museums Hosting Grand River Music Trivia Cruise In Partnership With 92.9 The Grand FM

Haldimand Museums has partnered with 92.9 The Grand FM to offer a Woodstock-themed Grand River Music Trivia Cruise featuring music trivia from the 1960s and 1970s. The cruise is scheduled for Wednesday, July 17 (5 – 7pm) and will depart at 5pm sharp at the Big Creek Boat Farm in Caledonia.

92.9 The Grand FM morning show hosts Peter Jaycock and Yvonne Van De Wiele will be providing entertainment & hosting the trivia portion of the evening. Guests can expect a variety of delicious snacks – both sweet and savoury – provided by Shelly’s Family Dining.

The cost to attend is $25.00 per person. Pre-registration for this event must be completed online via link.haldimandcounty.ca or at any Haldimand County Satellite office.

For additional information about this program, contact wmacdonald@haldimandcounty.on.ca. A full schedule of current museum offerings is available in the Spring/Summer 2019 Community Guide.

Press Release: Summer Programming For Kids Kicks Off At Wilson MacDonald Museum

This summer, Wilson MacDonald Memorial School & Museum is offering a number of fun, artistic and educational programs for kids in its extremely unique, one-room schoolhouse setting.

Daily programs run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and at each session, kids will take part in at least three projects – from wind chimes and other pieces of garden artwork and crafts to tie-dye pillowcases, decorating cupcakes, painting and more. Daily workshop themes include:

Thursday, July 11 – Whimsical Wind Chimes

Friday, July 12 – Art Attack

Thursday, July 18 – Woodworking 101

Friday, July 19 – Baa, Baa, Black Sheep

Thursday, July 25 – Winter Wonderland

Friday, July 26 – Scientific Art

Thursday, August 1 – Summer Camp Survivors

Friday, August 2 – Somewhere at the Beach

Thursday, August 8 – Beauty Spa Day

Friday, August 9 – Cartoonist Camp

Thursday, August 15 – Knight at the Museum

Friday, August 16 – Silly Scientists

As well as learning new skills and creating arts and crafts, participants will be able to tour the Museum’s latest exhibits — including the current “Auld Selkirk”, with its nod to the region’s Scottish plaids — and learn about the average school day in a one-room classroom.

Designated a National Historic Site of Canada, Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum in Selkirk is dedicated to preserving the history of rural education, the heritage of the surrounding community and the memory of poet Wilson Pugsley MacDonald, who was born in the neighbouring hamlet of Cheapside and attended the school house as a young boy.

Workshop fees are $26.25 per child per day and include all supplies. Registration may be completed online at link.haldimandcounty.ca or in-person at any County office. Anyone seeking further information about the museum or its programs are encouraged to call 905-776-3319.

Haldimand Museums Hosting 15th Annual Car And Truck Show June 23

Haldimand Museums will be hosting its 15th Annual Car & Truck Show on Sunday, June 23 at the Selkirk Community Park (17 Kent Street, Selkirk) from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Admission to the family-friendly event is by donation; a $5.00 entry fee applies to vehicles.

The popular annual event provides a meeting ground for vehicle enthusiasts from around Southern Ontario. “We had a great turn-out last year and the show was great fun for everyone,” said Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum Curator Dana Stavinga. “We are hoping that the weather will be cooperative but in any case, it’s a wonderful day for car lovers.”

While the event is centered around cars and trucks, there will be a silent auction, door prizes and trophies for drivers. DJ Frank Vessero will be on site playing music from the 50’s and 60’s and Shelly’s Family Dining from Kohler will be serving up a variety of food.

For information about the Car Show please contact the Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum at 905-776-3319.

From left to right: Fred Stevenson Francis (Haldimand Museums Advisory Board), Bob Tietz, Bill Mageran, owner, 56 Ford F100, Kathy and Keith Schaeffer (1937 Ford) and Rick Hughes.

Haldimand County Seeking Public Input To Enhance Public Parks In Cayuga

Haldimand County is seeking community input to enhance public parks in Cayuga. Public meetings have been scheduled for June 20 (2pm – 4pm & 7pm – 9pm) at the Cayuga Arena (McSorley Hall) to collect resident ideas and establish a community-driven vision for the Cayuga parks system with a focus on the Village Green, Cayuga Library parkette, Bob Baigent Park and the Cayuga Administration Building/museum property.

“Public parks and green spaces are important community assets with long lifespans. We want to work with residents to design the best possible solutions that can be enjoyed now, and for years to come,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

Landscape architecture and planning firm Stempski Kelly Associates Inc. have been contracted to facilitate the community engagement process and develop designs for the four public parks. Initial meetings in June will focus on identifying the types of parks-related amenities desired by residents and where they could be located. Community engagement meetings will be highly visual with design exercises that result in a ‘real-time’ capturing of resident ideas.

Following the initial meeting, Stempski Kelly Associates Inc. will prepare draft concepts and present them for resident review and input. Concept review meetings dates will be announced in late summer 2019. “This is an excellent opportunity to provide input on the development of public green space, and we’re encouraging residents to attend meetings at all phases of the project,” Mayor Hewitt noted.

Cayuga Parks Community Engagement – Session #1

Thursday, June 20, 2019

McSorley Hall – Cayuga Arena

55 Thorburn St. S, Cayuga

2pm to 4pm (afternoon session) OR 7pm to 9pm (evening session)

No registration is required to attend the community engagement sessions, and all are welcome. Residents seeking further information about the Cayuga parks community engagement sessions are encouraged to call 905-318-5932 or e-mail Haldimand County’s Community Development & Partnerships division at cdp@haldimandcounty.on.ca. A final concept design and report, along with estimated costs, will be presented to Council in fall 2019.

Haldimand Museums Hosting Mothers Day Historical Tea, Victorian Beauty Secrets Seminar And More This May

This May at Haldimand County Museum & Archives, residents and visitors are invited to learn about Victorian beauty secrets, women’s suffrage and famous mothers throughout history. All events run from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at the museum’s 8 Echo St. location in Cayuga unless otherwise specified. Admission is by donation.

May 8 – Famous Mothers Tea & Talk

Fresh homemade scones, raspberry jam and other treats will be served followed by an informative talk on some of the strong, courageous mothers throughout history. Women like Lady Aberdeen –one of the founders of the Victorian Order of Nurses – and Nellie McClung – a women’s rights activists, reformer and legislator – will be highlighted. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person. Code: 8105.

May 15 – Heritage Series: Women Wielding Power

This talk will explore the suffrage movement and the history of women’s rights. The suffrage movement in Canada began in the 1890s but it wasn’t until 1920 that women got the right to vote in Ontario. The movers and shakers of the time included Dr. Emily Stowe – first female doctor to practice medicine in Canada – and Adelaide Hunter Hoodless, who fought for better education and conditions for women. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $5/person. Code: 8108.

May 16, 22 & 23 – Victorian Beauty Secrets Workshops at your Library

Haldimand Museums’ popular Victorian Beauty Secrets workshops will be held at the Hagersville, Dunnville & Jarvis libraries throughout May. Workshop participants will learn how their Victorian ancestors managed to look their best with a minimal amount of store-bought items. Participants will have the opportunity to sample and make some of women’s favourite products from the era. Registration fee includes recipes, take-home products and light refreshments. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person. (Hagersville Library – May 16, 1pm to 3pm – Code: 8084; Dunnville Library – May 22, 1pm to 3pm – Code: 8087; Jarvis Library – May 23, 1:30pm to 3:30pm – Code: 8088)

Pre-registration for paid events must be completed online or at any County office using the code provided. For more information, contact the museum at 905-772-5880 or email: krichardson@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Trail Grand Openings Met With Enthusiasm By Residents And Visiting Recreation Seekers

On Saturday, April 27, Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt and members of Council hosted grand opening celebrations at the award-winning Cayuga Grand Vista and Gypsum Mine Tract trails. Dozens of residents and visitors attended, despite the blustery weather, to explore the new routes and learn about Haldimand’s history.

“Both the Cayuga Grand Vista and Gypsum Mine Tract are fantastic additions to the community,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt. “They offer new opportunities to stay active, learn about our history and connect with nature,” he added.

At the Cayuga Grand Vista celebration, attendees were introduced to stories of the late Honourable Madame Justice Helen Kinnear and Honourable Dr. Justice T. David Marshall – both Cayuga-born figures with extraordinary accomplishments – whom the trail’s two scenic lookouts were named after. Justice Kinnear defied early gender stereotypes to become a history-making pioneer in the legal profession, while Dr. Justice Marshall achieved national recognition in the fields of medicine and law. Family members of both Justice Kinnear and Dr. Justice Marshall were present and acknowledged by Council prior to the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

At the Gypsum Mine Tract opening, attendees learned about the history of gypsum mining that played a major role in Caledonia’s development. From 1838 – 2016, 5 mines were established and eventually decommissioned in both Caledonia and York; gypsum was extracted from 65 feet below ground and hauled to the surface by donkeys and horses underneath what is now the trail.

“The community response to both of these new trails has been extremely positive and they will be enjoyed by residents and visitors for generations to come,” said Hewitt.

More information on Haldimand County trail routes, parks and recreation activities is available on the Haldimand County website.


Haldimand County Council, staff, Trails Advisory Committee members and family members of Dr. Justice David T. Marshall and the Honourable Madame Justine Helen Kinnear cutting the Cayuga Grand Vista trail ribbon.

From left to right: Janet deVos (Haldimand County Trails Advisory Committee), Sheila Wilson (Haldimand County), Jill Morison, Fred Morison, Mrs. T. David Marshall, Don Boyle (Haldimand County), Brittany Morison, David Morison, Albert Morison, Darline Kinnear, Mayor Ken Hewitt (Haldimand County), (Behind Ken is Murray Kinnear), Ward 2 Councillor John Metcalfe (Haldimand County), Ward 3 Councillor Dan Lawrence (Haldimand County), and Megan Turner (Haldimand County).

Haldimand County Public Library Hosting 7th Annual Poetry Contest

Haldimand County Public Library invites residents of all ages to get creative and participate in its 7th annual poetry contest, to be held throughout the month of April. April 2019 marks the 21st anniversary of National Poetry Month being recognized in Canada, which celebrates poetry and the important role it plays in Canadian culture.

This year, the library’s poetry contest theme is My Town, My Home, and residents are encouraged to write and submit an original, unpublished poem of any style surrounding this theme. Entry forms, a full list of rules and submission details can be obtained on the library’s website or at any library branch. This year, poems may also be submitted online.

Submissions will be accepted during the month of April and entered to win cash prizes in one of the following categories:

  • Primary – Kindergarten to Gr. 3
  • Junior – Gr. 4 to Gr. 6
  • Intermediate – Gr. 7 to Gr. 10
  • Senior – Gr. 11 – 12
  • Adult – age 18+

Judging will take place at the end of April by a panel of judges. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded in each category. First prize will receive $50, second prize will receive $35 and third prize will receive $20. Winners, their families and friends will be invited to attend the April Poetry Contest Awards Ceremony to enjoy poetry readings and light refreshments; a date and location for the ceremony will be announced towards the end of the contest.

Individuals with further questions about the 7th Annual April Poetry Contest may call or visit their local library branch. Branch hours and contact numbers can be found at haldimandlibrary.ca. To stay connected with the library, ‘like’ them on Facebook for updates on programming, special events and more.

Haldimand County Museum & Archives Launching New Exhibit And More This April

This April, members of the public are invited to create their own elaborate fascinator hat, enjoy a proper Royal tea, celebrate the roaring twenties and explore a brand new exhibit at HCMA. All events run from 1p.m. to 3p.m. at 8 Echo St. in Cayuga unless otherwise specified. Registration for paid events may be completed online via link.haldimandcounty.on.ca or at any County office using the code provided.

April 4 – Exhibit: Flood, Fire and Fury

This fascinating exhibit explores the many disasters that have happened in Haldimand County including the great flood of 1930, the crippling snowstorm of 1977 and the Hagersville tire fire in 1990. Learn about these notable events and how the community rallied to recover. The exhibit runs from April 4 until May 31 and is open to the public during regular museum hours. Admission is by donation.

April 10 – Adult Workshop: Make Your Own Fascinator

In the 18th century, British women dressed their elaborate hairstyles with ribbons, feathers, butterflies and jewels secured to the front or side of the head. At this workshop, participants will learn how to make their own one-of-a-kind fascinator hat.  Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person. Code: 8100.

April 17 Royal High Tea

Participants are encouraged to wear their favourite hat and bring their appetites to this true High

Tea. Featuring a menu of fresh homemade scones, raspberry preserves and sweet treats, this event will highlight royal women. Door prizes and other surprises will be offered! Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $10/person. Code: 8101.

April 24 – Heritage Series: All That Jazz

This informative talk will offer a nostalgic look at the roaring twenties. World War I had just come to an end and a new generation flocked from small towns to big cities in search of excitement and opportunity. Flashy new cars rolled down city streets, speakeasies popped up everywhere and women expressed their independence by shortening their hemlines & cutting their hair. Pre-registration is required for this program; the cost is $5/person. Code: 8102

For more information contact 905-772-5880 or museum.archives@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Cayuga Grand Vista Trail Wins International Design Award For Architecture

Haldimand County’s Cayuga Grand Vista trail was recognized for its innovative design and architecture at the International Design Awards. The trail was awarded a ‘Silver’ for architectural design in the ‘arches, bridges, viaducts and gateways’ subcategory. This award follows the trail’s recognition at the Landscape Ontario Awards of Excellence in January 2019.

The International Design Awards (IDA) exist to recognize, celebrate and promote legendary design vision and to uncover emerging talent in architecture, interior, product, graphic, and fashion design. The firm contracted to design the trail, Seferian Design Group of Burlington, put forward the award nomination.

“This is incredible news. I am so proud of this award, our team, and the project being recognized on the international stage,” said Brad Smith, Seferian Design Group’s Senior Landscape Architect. Seferian also won a Landscape Ontario Award of Excellence in January 2019 for the Cayuga Grand Vista design.

The Cayuga Grand Vista’s main trailhead is located behind the Cayuga Courthouse at 55 Munsee St. N. The trail guides pedestrians and cyclists on a scenic loop from the courthouse over the Grand River on the restored CN bridge to King George St. and Maple Rd. (secondary trailhead) and back to the courthouse via Talbot St. E. and Munsee St. N. Two lookout platforms on the east and west sides of the bridge offer picturesque views of the river and its natural surroundings. Parking is available at the main trailhead behind the Courthouse.

“Seeing the concept of this trail come to life – especially restoration of the bridge – was an amazing thing to witness. It’s a fantastic addition to the community that will be enjoyed by residents and visitors for generations to come,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt.

A Grand Opening Celebration for the Cayuga Grand Vista trail will be held on April 27 at 10:30 am, 2019; full details will be announced shortly.

Note: Trail photo courtesy of Seferian Design Group

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