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Haldimand County Public Library hosting 10th annual poetry contest

Haldimand County Public Library invites residents of all ages to get creative and participate in its 10th annual poetry contest, to be held throughout the month of April.

This year’s theme is Kindness. The Library encourages entrants to express through poetry how kindness, or good will, empathy, tolerance, helpfulness and philanthropy has impacted them, their community, or how they approach the world.

Entry forms and a full list of rules and submission details can be found on the library’s website or at any library branch. Submissions can be made in person at any branch or can 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 beginning of May by a library-chosen panel. 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 will be announced in mid-May with an awards ceremony to follow.

Individuals with further questions about the 10th Annual April Poetry Contest may call or visit their local library branch. Branch hours and contact numbers can be found on Haldimand County Public Library website.

Watershed Conditions Statement – Riverine Flood Outlook

HALDIMAND COUNTY, ON – Please be aware that the Long Point Region Conservation Authority is issuing a Watershed Conditions Statement – Riverine Flood Outlook for all areas within its watershed.

Precipitation across southern Ontario is forecast to reach 15-20 mm today with an additional 15-25 mm on Saturday. Additionally, above-freezing daytime air temperatures, as high as +10° cm are forecast for southern Ontario over the next four days. A moderate snowpack, ranging from 0-6.9 cm has been recorded throughout the watershed.

The above-freezing temperatures with added rain will result in the snowpack becoming saturated with water. It is expected that the entire snowpack will melt and release water which will create a potential for flooding in flood prone areas through the week into the weekend.

Members of the public are reminded to stay away from ditches, streams, rivers and ponds as the combination of slippery banks and cold, fast-flowing water is dangerous. Parents are reminded to keep children and pets away from these areas.

Landowners are also advised to make sure dams, culverts, and catch basins are free from debris and functioning properly – if it is safe to do so.

Water levels are expected to remain high for several days. This Flood Outlook is in effect until Tuesday March 28, 2023.

Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum welcomes spring with children’s workshops

This spring, the Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum is offering a series of fun, engaging and artistically themed workshops for children aged 5-12 years.

Taking place in Haldimand’s unique one-room schoolhouse, the Saturday workshops will focus on creating one-of-a-kind arts and crafts for each holiday using techniques such as woodworking, painting and gardening.

Saturday, Apr. 1 – Easter Workshop
Participants can help the museum get ready for its Easter egg hunt, create some crafts and sample some sweet treats.

Saturday, May 6 – Mother’s Day Workshop
Focusing on scrapbooking, this workshop will teach kids how to make a special memory for mom.

Saturday, June 10 – Father’s Day Workshop
Kids can construct a puzzle piece creation and make some sweet treats to share with dad.

All the workshops run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and cost $29 per child. Registration is available online or in person at the Haldimand County Administration Building, 53 Thorburn St. S., Cayuga.

All programs take place at the Wilson MacDonald Memorial School Museum, 351 Rainham Rd., Selkirk. For more information call the museum at 905-776-3319 or email

April happenings at the Heritage Centre in Cayuga

The Heritage Centre in Cayuga is celebrating spring with four events and a new exhibition titled ‘With this Ring, I Thee Wed.’ The exhibition runs from April 4 to June 24 and will feature wedding gowns, dresses and ensembles that span the period from 1840 to the present.

Tuesday, Apr. 11 (6 p.m.) – Workshop: Preserving your Family Heirlooms
Participants will learn how to preserve their family’s most treasured heirlooms at this hands-on workshop.

Wednesday, Apr. 12 (1 p.m.) – Presentation: With this Ring
Highlighting the Heritage Centre’s latest exhibition, ‘With this Ring, I Thee Wed,’ this presentation will focus on the history of wedding attire, customs and traditions.

Tuesday, Apr. 18 (6 p.m.) – Presentation: Let Them Eat Cake
This presentation focuses on the history of mills and bakeries in Haldimand County.

Wednesday, Apr. 19 (1 p.m.) – Tea and Presentation: Royal Rules
Attendees can enjoy homemade scones, sweet treats, and a delightful talk on the rules members of the Royal Family are expected to follow in public.

The cost for each regular program is $10 per person and the afternoon tea is $15 per person. Pre-registration is required for all programs. Register online or in person at the Haldimand County Administration Building, 53 Thorburn Street South, Cayuga.

All programs take place at the Cayuga Library + Heritage Centre, located at 19 Talbot Street West. For more information, contact the Heritage Centre at (905) 318-5932, ext. 6613 or email

Edinburgh Square hops into spring with new events and programming

Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre is pleased to announce an exciting line-up of programming, events and exhibitions for April 2023.

Saturday Discovery Day Workshops for kids return April 1 with the ‘Easter Egg-stravaganza’ Workshop. Children can enjoy a day of fun crafts, tasty treats and an ‘eggcellent egg hunt.’ April 22 will feature an Earth Day Workshop where kids can create recyclable art and learn about ways to keep the Earth happy and healthy.

Saturday workshops run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and are geared toward children 6 to 10 years of age. The cost for each session is $28.25 per person. Pre-registration is required. Register online at or in person at the Haldimand County Administration Building, 53 Thorburn Street South, Cayuga.

Beginning April 11, the Haldimand Photography Club returns to Edinburgh Square for its annual exhibition featuring the work of talented local photographers and highlighting a blend of wildlife, landscapes and portraiture images.

The Centre is also pleased to host a Paddle Painting Workshop with Gina Wilson McIntee on the evening of Friday, Apr. 21. Gina, an established artist, will inspire and share why it’s important to love ourselves first and embrace the precious gifts we hold. Nature, wildlife and water are all a part of the scene participants will paint. Finished paddles will be a reminder that people are part of a larger community and bigger picture. To register contact Tamara at  905-229-0911 or email  The workshop runs 7-9 p.m. and costs $70 per person (includes materials and supplies).

Edinburgh Square Heritage & Cultural Centre is located at 80 Caithness Street East, Caledonia. For more information about programs and activities contact Edinburgh Square at 905-765-3134 or email

Architect named for design development of Hagersville Library + Active Living Centre

Plans are moving forward for the construction of Haldimand County’s new Library + Active Living Centre in Hagersville with the awarding of the design contract to the firm of Curran, Gacesa, Slote Architects Inc. (CGS).

The firm was one of seven compliant bidders which submitted competitive bids—assessed through the County’s Procurement Policy and in keeping with legislation—for the contract. The work includes the development of detailed design and engineering drawings, which will become part of a tender document for construction of the facility.

Work will begin immediately to finalize the design of the new multi-purpose facility and includes incorporation of stakeholder and community input about the design so far as well as a final round of consultation this spring.

Details about opportunities to contribute to the design will be promoted through Haldimand County’s newspaper ads and social media platforms, as well as the dedicated County webpage for the project:


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

Mayor’s statement on the passing of former mayor Lorraine Bergstrand

I was deeply saddened to hear of the loss of Lorraine Bergstrand. As the first official mayor of Haldimand County as its own entity, Lorraine was instrumental in setting a solid foundation for Haldimand County to build upon for years to come.  Lorraine was a strong advocate for women in politics and administration, an inspiring and tenacious leader to many and will leave behind a lasting impact. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family, friends, and all those grieving.

We’ve lowered flags at the County Administration building to mark her passing and honour a life taken too soon. Lorraine was a familiar and passionate presence in our community and she will be greatly missed.

— Mayor Shelley Ann Bentley

Notice of Passing of Motion declaring the vacancy of Ward 4 Office – March 6, 2023

The following motion was passed at the March 6, 2023 Council meeting:

THAT regretfully, Haldimand County Council acknowledges the resignation from Natalie Stam as Councillor for Ward 4;

AND THAT in accordance with section 262 of the Municipal Act, the office of Ward 4 Councillor is declared vacant;

AND THAT staff be directed to report back to the March 21, 2023 Council in Committee meeting on options for filling the vacancy.

In the interim, communication with Ward 4 residents will be managed through the Mayor’s office.

Subsequent information about timing and options for filling the vacancy will be provided in the March 21st CIC report.

March Break activities at the Haldimand County Public Library

The Haldimand County Public Library is hosting activities at all branches over March Break. Participants can take part in craft sessions, Storytimes, LEGO clubs and parties. Registration is required and can be done at any branch.  For more information, please call 289-674-0400 or visit your local branch.

Cayuga Branch

  • Piggy Tissue Box Craft – Thursday, Mar. 16, 1-2 p.m., $2 (Ages 5+)
  • Spring Bird Storytime – Friday, Mar. 17, 11-11:45 a.m., $1 (Ages 3+)

Hagersville Branch

  • Let’s Welcome Spring Storytime – Wednesday, Mar. 15, 10:30-11:15 a.m., $1 (Ages 3+)
  • Piggy Bank Craft – Thursday, Mar. 16, 10:30-11:30 a.m., $2 (Ages 5+)

Selkirk Branch

  • For the Birds Party – Monday, Mar, 13, 2-4 p.m., $4 (Ages 3+)
  • Let’s Welcome Spring Storytime – Tuesday, Mar. 14, 11-11:45 a.m., $1 (Ages 3+)
  • LEGO Club – Saturday, Mar. 18, 11 a.m.-12 p.m., FREE (Ages 3+)

Dunnville Branch

  • Piggy Bank Craft – Monday, Mar. 13, 10:45-11:15 a.m., $2 (Ages 3+)
  • Juggling Ball Make and Learn – Monday, Mar. 13, 12:30-1:15 p.m., $2 (Ages 7+)
  • For the Birds Party – Wednesday, Mar. 15, 2-4 p.m., $4 (Ages 3+)
  • Let’s Welcome Spring Storytime – Friday, Mar. 17, 11-11:45 a.m., $1 (Ages 3+)
  • LEGO Boat Races – Friday, Mar. 17, 2:30-4 p.m., FREE (Ages 6+)

Jarvis Branch

  • Let’s Welcome Spring Storytime – Monday, Mar. 13, 1-1:45 p.m., $1 (Ages 3+)
  • Piggy Bank Craft – Thursday, Mar. 16, 11 a.m.-12 p.m., $2 (Ages 5+)
  • For the Birds Party – Thursday, March 16th, 2-4 p.m., $4 (Ages 5+)

Caledonia Branch

  • LEGO Club – Monday, Mar. 13, 2-3 p.m., FREE (Ages 3+)
  • Let’s Welcome to Spring Storytime – Wednesday, Mar. 15, 10:30-11:45 a.m., $1 (Ages 3+)
  • For the Birds Party – Friday, Mar. 17, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., $4 (Ages 3+)

Haldimand County Council Approves 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget

On March 2, 2023, Haldimand County Council reviewed and approved the 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget. The budget results in a total levy requirement of $80,305,850, which equates to a residential tax impact of 3.28%.

Generally, the annual Operating Budget pays for day to day operations of the County, including salaries, wages, utilities, insurance and services such as running arenas/programming, maintaining locals parks and cemeteries, providing emergency services (fire, police and ambulance), garbage collection and related activities.

Major factors that influenced the 2023 Operating Budget include external financial pressures like inflation, supply chain impacts, reduced/uncertain provincial funding and the rising cost of insurance and contracted essential services. The 2023 budget also introduces new initiatives in response to growth, new legislative requirements and to meet the community’s evolving needs and service desires.

“While the Operating Budget initially represented a 5% increase for ratepayers, staff conducted a rigorous review of controllable costs and did not bring forward any new initiatives that weren’t urgent, required by legislation or wouldn’t directly benefit the public,” CAO Craig Manley stated.

“Through this review, staff have developed a budget that addresses the county’s current needs, keeps the tax impact lower than what many other municipalities are facing, and employs strategic foresight to ensure our strong financial position is sustained.”

Manley also noted that Haldimand is in a unique period of growth and demographic change, and it will be important for Council to carefully evaluate not only levels of service that are offered to the community, but how they are administered when planning for the future.

“Thanks to the hard work and diligence of staff, we have a budget that balances maintaining the services our residents value with making investments to ensure Haldimand remains a prosperous, vibrant community for future generations,” noted Mayor Shelley Ann Bentley.

Highlights of the 2023 Tax-Supported Operating Budget include:

  • introducing new, temporary staffing resources to oversee and expedite major projects, including the construction of Caledonia’s new Fire/EMS station, municipal website re-design and the last year of the gravel road conversion program;
  • over $76,000 in grants to support local organizations with community beautification initiatives;
  • continuing to roll out the Council-approved reorganization of the IT division to increase efficiencies, meet service delivery requirements and strengthen cybersecurity;
  • increasing the staffing complement of Building Services to enhance the building permit application intake, inspection and issuance process;
  • enhancing the county’s forestry management program and reducing external consulting costs by introducing a new, in-house Urban Forester position to respond to service requests;
  • spearheading a recruitment and retention strategy to ensure the county can continue to recruit, retain and develop existing staff;
  • investing in the development of a corporate training plan relating to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as recommended by the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion committee;
  • in response to rapid growth, adding a Project Manager, Municipal Infrastructure to manage all construction associated with land development;
  • introducing six additional summer students to facilitate the county’s roadside mowing program as a pilot project, with the aim of reducing costs and reliance on contracted services; and
  • adding additional summer program staff in response to growth and increasing demand for programming.

More information on County budgets and budget processes is available on the County website via You can also check out the 2023 Operating Budget overview for an at-a-glance look at budget highlights.

Average tax bill allocation by services chart, as outlined in the 2023 operating budget.