Yearly: 2008

13 Dec

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Lessons Can Be Learned

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Lessons Can Be Learned From the Big Fire on Evans Drive at Musselman’s Lake

On Wednesday December 10th 2008, fire destroyed two homes and damaged a third.

Fortunately there was no loss of life but all residents should learn from this tragedy.

1. Please have your chimney and heating system thoroughly examined. Rumour is this fire could have been started by a faulty space heater.

2. Please make sure you have content insurance even if you are a tenant. There are two types of insurance one is Building Insurance, which the Landlord or Homeowner should be required to carry; but the other often neglected especially by tenants is Content Insurance.

This insures your contents, furniture, clothes, computers, appliances etc. Whether you are a tenant or a homeowner you should review your Content Insurance on an annual basis with your insurance agent to ensure you have enough coverage.

Filed Under: MLRA News

10 Dec

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Stewardship Plan Meeting

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Residents Attending the Stewardship Plan Meeting on Monday December 8th Were Treated to a Very Productive and Successful Presentation

Stewardship Plan

The Technical Working Group of the Stewardship plan, chaired by resident Dan Heron, has been working hard in concert with the L.S.R.C.A .(Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority) and the Town of Stouffville to come up with a workable Stewardship Plan for Musselman’s Lake.

This hard work was demonstrated in an excellent preliminary presentation to the residents at the Balllantrae Community Centre.

The L.S.R.C.A., led by Director Brian Kemp and Project Manager Christa Sharp, brought a great many L.S.R.C.A. experts to make presentations and answer questions from the residents.

The Town was well represented with Councillor Phil Bannon, CAO Dave Cash and Andrew McNeely, Director of Town Planning.

Randy French of French Planning Services served as an excellent moderator and really kept the presentation and discussions moving quickly.

We hope to give you a more detailed account of the event within the next couple of weeks.

For now, suffice it to say, we are really pleased with the high level of commitment from the Town, L.S.R.C.A., and the members of the TWG to moving the Musselman’s Lake Stewardship Plan along and making it a success.

CONGRATULATIONS! To all who participated in the meeting.

Filed Under: Events, MLRA News

01 Dec

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“Coffee In Kandahar”

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Please Say Thank-You to a Canadian Soldier on Christmas Day with “Coffee In Kandahar”

Kandahar Soldier

“Coffee In Kandahar” is an initiative that Councillor Phil Bannon would like to see the whole community of Stouffville take part in. What Councillor Bannon is looking for is every household in Stouffville contributing to a fund…”Coffee In Kandahar”.

The intent of this program is to show support for our 2,500 troops presently deployed in Afghanistan. Phil wants us to purchase a coffee for every Canadian soldier presently deployed in Afghanistan, on Christmas Day. Every dollar that is donated will be used to purchase coffee certificates from Tim Hortons. These certificates, along with Christmas cards from the local Scouts, Cubs & all Stouffville Schools, will be delivered to our soldiers in Afghanistan in time for Christmas Day. Each soldier will be entitled to one free coffee from the Tim Hortons Donut Shop on Christmas Day. The Tim Hortons Donut Shop is a Corporate store which is located on the Armed Forces base in Kandahar.

Councillor Bannon has made arrangements for residents to drop off donations at our two fire halls, one located in Ballantrae and the other on Main St. Stouffville.
Residents can also drop off donations at the reception desk of the Town Hall located at # 37 Sandiford Dr. 4th Floor in Stouffville.

Please donate to buy a Canadian soldier a cup of Coffee on Christmas.

This is a perfect way to say Thank-you! and Come Home Safe!

Filed Under: MLRA News

01 Nov

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M.L.R.A. Meeting

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Rick Wigmore, VP M.L.R.A. Opened the Meeting…

It was a cold snowy night, a lot of residents were suffering from cold and flu, and the Leaf game was on television. Not exactly a great night for a meeting.

1. Rick Wigmore, VP MLRA opened the meeting with a review of events since the last meeting.

The Giant Hogweed Scare and how it was confined to the Churchill area and how we are going to have to be vigilant in the Spring because this is a very prolific plant and there is a chance not all the spores were eradicated.

The Resurgence of the Churchill Drive Residents Association. Over 20 attended a meeting in the summer between Councillor Bannon and the Association to discuss local street issues. They have been showing up in good numbers at the Park meetings and the recent council meeting. It’s great to see this group get active again and Jane Grinnell, their spokesperson, will be the main contact with the MLRA.

All Musselman’s Lake Residents Association executive members are working together to achieve positive outcomes. Lisa White, President of the Cedarvale Community Association, Dan Heron President of the Connor Residents Association, and Jane Grinnell spokesperson for the Churchill Drive Residents Association have all been valuable additions to the MLRA Executive Team. Their participation means there is a constant line of communication between the Street Associations and the umbrella residents group, the MLRA.

Musselman’s Lake is going to have two very viable variety stores. One on the north shore at Cedar Beach and now with building issues getting resolved, the one on the south shore will remain open. There was a very positive meeting held between the owners of the building and neighbouring residents. Also present was Councillor Bannon and members of the MLRA executive. This meeting was a prime example of when people are respectful of each other’s position, any problem can be worked through to everyone’s satisfaction. There will be a follow-up meeting where final plans will be presented to residents for approval before the final presentation to Council.

The owner of the Cedar Beach Variety Store was credited with helping to save the life of a 13 year old drowning victim in early July. George heard about the commotion on the Beach, left his store unattended, called 911 on the way down to the beach and helped three other gentlemen perform CPR. There were no vital signs when George arrived but thankfully they were able to revive the boy. Police said “It’s good to see there are still people willing to go above and beyond to help others”. Our congratulations go out to George Karpouzis, our own local hero.

Charlene Jones, MLRA Fisheries Co-Chairperson has become a Musselman’s Lake Reporter for the Stouffville Freepress which has already resulted in two very positive articles on the Lake. Charlene is friends with Kate Gilderdale the editor who has told us the Free Press wants to carry positive news with lots of pictures.

Dan Heron and Dan Wigmore have become our official unpaid photographers and are building a library of shots of the lake and events for use on the website and with the media. One of those pictures was recently featured on the front cover of the latest edition of the Stouffville Freepress.

MLRA website has become very popular with residents. The MLRA website received over a thousand hits in both the month of July and August. The breakdown of the site activity shows us that besides visitors from around the world we have 140-144 regular visitors each month which we can only assume are local resident family computers. With this amount of local traffic our sponsorship sub committee will be looking into selling corporate ads to local businesses.

Two more Streetlight systems are being investigated. One system is a variation of the Envirosmart system produced by a local Stouffville Company and the other is a brand new LED system produced by a Paris Ontario company. There will be more news later on both these systems.

2. The Stewardship Plan Update was presented by Dan Heron, President of the Connor Residents Association, plus Chairman of the Technical Working Group of the Stewardship Plan.

Dan Heron displayed a map of the Musselman’s Lake and the surrounding area with the watershed area clearly indicated. Dan said there were 500 residents contained in this area. He said it was important to realize we are part of a greater watershed that stretches as far as Lake Simcoe therefore what we do or don’t do with the water quality in this area has far reaching effects. The Technical Working Group is meeting regularly to craft a Stewardship Plan for the Area.

3. Park Study Update was presented by Rick Wigmore VP MLRA

Park Study Slide Presentation (click here)

Mr Wigmore went on to say…

Historically we know the Town has used dissent among the residents to back off and take our requests off the table. ”We don’t know what the Lake Residents want” has always been the easy way out for local politicians. Well things have changed. We want to work with Council and Town Staff to realize our dream of a Community Park.

Now more than ever we need to project a united professional image of a community that wants to work in a spirit of cooperation with Council and Town Staff. Please help us maintain that image. Be patient, negotiations with land owners and costings will take a while and then will come their recommendation.

Let’s not squabble over this recommendation and repeat mistakes of the past because there is no doubt any dissent will once more result in the Town backing off and we will have once more squandered a terrific opportunity.

In a perfect world the FOML would be working in concert with the MLRA. The FOML(Friends of Musselman’s Lake) currently have two great initiatives. One is the Green Frog initiative where green frogs are painted next to sewer grates and swales as a reminder to residents that what you do at home affects the whole ecosystem. It is amazing how many unfiltered road grates are directing road run-off directly into the Lake. The FOML has also launched a recycling and disposal program for batteries, rechargeable tool batteries, ink cartridges, compact fluorescent light bulbs and small electronic devices such as cell phones. Both these programs are very commendable.

Unfortunately this is not a perfect world and the FOML are the ONLY lake group that steadfastly refuses to work with the MLRA. Maybe it’s because the MLRA would require two things from the FOML 1.TRANSPARENCY OF OPERATION & 2.PUBLIC ACCOUNTABILITY FOR ALL FUNDS. No more applying for Government and Non-Government funding in complete secrecy without any input from the residents on whose behalf these funds have been raised. No more secrecy in how much was raised and how these funds were spent.

WHY IS THE FOML PUSHING ONLY ONE OPTION (The Glendale Beach option) FOR THE COMMUNITY PARK WHEN THERE ARE THREE BEING INVESTIGATED? WHY IS THE FOML PUSHING HARD FOR A 6 ACRE COMMUNITY PARK WHEN THERE IS ALSO 100 or 150 ACRE COMMUNITY PARKS ON THE TABLE?

Maybe the answer lies in a letter Mr. Carroll, chairman of the FOML wrote and distributed at an MLRA meeting where he refers to the shoreline restoration of Glendale Beach.

“The shoreline restoration should not be ignored. It would be a great project for the community to get involved in. There is plenty of government and non-government funding that would go this project. “(his wording not ours)” It would be something that could draw this community out to take part in. This should be something we should do, not be afraid to do. The FOML would gladly take this part on. We have the contacts, the expertise and the resources to do this. This should not be looked at as a problem but a great opportunity at no cost to taxpayers”

In this letter he clearly talks about applying for both Government and Non Government funding and the Friends running this project. Makes you wonder if there is a hidden agenda to this push for Glendale above all other options.

Right out of the Friends Newsletter this is their version of a community park (see any people?)
Park
This is the MLRA version of a Community Park. Residents of all ages enjoying lots of recreational activities.
Park
Why Does The Naturalized Shoreline Have To Be Tied To The Community Park?

Why can’t the residents have a 100 or 150 acre park off the lake with Bike paths tied into the Trans Canada Trail, baseball diamond, hiking paths and the like? If for instance the Wagon Wheel Ranch option is selected we know because there is no land cost, there will be a lot more funds available for park infrastructure.

Then, why not use that negotiation template (land for building lots) to get the shoreline and a small parkette. The Friends know where to get funding for a naturalized shoreline. Then you put in a boardwalk with park benches only. That way you’re not attracting the transient crowd to the Lake with picnic tables and other amenities. There are solutions to everything.

The one thing that is certain if when the Park Location is announced and if it is not the Glendale Beach option the FOML better not put on the same childish show as they did at the September 2nd Council meetings or it will cost us all a Community Park.

4. The Halloween Party Saturday November 1st Was Presented By Ian Feld Social Convener For The M.L.R.A.

Lisa White, the President of the Cedarvale Community Association was originally scheduled to give this presentation but due to a severe cold was unable to speak so Ian took over. This has become the biggest and most successful social event at the Lake. This year it will be held Saturday November 1st, 9:00 p.m. at the Cedar Beach Pavilion. All the details are at www.musselmanslake.ca. Admission is $10 at the door. There will be a cash bar and lots and lots of prizes eg. Best Costumes plus a popular 50/50 draw. Admission is limited to 19 years of age and over. Once more great music and entertainment will be provided by Mike Feld and Most Excellent Productions. This Party is presented every year by the Cedarvale Community Association and is supported by the MLRA. Please plan to attend.

Ian also reminded everyone that the highly successful Winter Carnival will be running again this year at Cedar Beach. Details to follow.

Earth Day Clean-up will be coming up in the Spring. Date and time to be announced.

5.The Financial Report Was Given By Linda Wigmore, Treasurer M.L.R.A.

The MLRA has just over $1,000 in the bank raised the previous year with memberships and the Halloween Party. Linda pointed out that, due to economic times and residents already paying for membership in their resident associations, we are discontinuing fees and encouraging all residents to join. The MLRA still hopes to raise funds with Corporate Sponsorships. If you have not registered yet with the MLRA we would encourage you to send us your contact information through the web site www.musselmanslake.ca

6. Christine Laing President Of The M.L.R.A. Gave A Report On The Formation Of The M.L.R.A. Sub-Committees

The reasons for the formation of the sub-committees were to build on the success of the Fisheries subcommittee where Charlene Jones and Harold Musetescu as co-chairs where able to use the numbers of the MLRA members to gain more authority when dealing with various government agencies and quite effectively brought ice fishing under control.

The Sub-Committees

Corporate Sponsorships
This sub-committee will investigate revenue streams for the MLRA. This would include local businesses running ads on the website with links to their own websites. In addition opportunities exist with Corporate sponsorships of Newsletters and Winter Carnival sponsorship packages.

Committee Members:
Jane Grinnell Lisa White
Tracey Heron Paul Lim

Environmental Issues
This sub-committee will deal with all things environmental around the Lake. We have Dr Laing and Dan Wigmore. Now with the addition of Ralph Tonninger resident and staff member of TRCA (Toronto and Region Conservation Authority) we are hoping he can serve as a lynch pin with the LSRCA and other environmental associations.

Committee Members:
Dr. Brian Laing Ralph Tonninger Dan Wigmore

Event Planning
We would like to plan more social events like the Halloween Party and along with corporate sponsorship hope to raise money for projects and worthy causes. This sub-committee will also work with Councillor Bannon on the highly successful winter carnival.

Committee Members:
Ian Feld Lesley O’Connor Janet Keen

Fisheries
This was the template for the sub committee idea. Charlene and Harold used the backing of the MLRA to effectively deal with appropriate government agencies to bring ice fishing under control. All things “Fishy” fall under this sub-committee.

Committee Members:
Charlene Jones Harold Musetescu
Steve Rivard Joe Russell

Nuisance/Trespassing
This is an important sub committee that we need more resident participation. We need residents especially at Churchill Beach with day boaters, trippers and illegal parkers and residents near the Water Tower to deal with ATV’s and motorcycles. This would require close liaison with the By-laws officers and the Police.

Committee Members:
Lois Stirling

Boating Safety & Practices
This sub-committee is responsible for ensuring that safe boating practices are carried out on the lake and in addition, give an MLRA presentation on what constitutes safe boating and etiquette.

Committee Members:
Kyle Jenkins Kevin Wigmore Robert Halsey

In summary we would like to remind residents that we need your participation to make the residents association a success. We all need to work toward a better community in which to live. If you would like to volunteer for any of these sub committees, please email us atmlra@musselmanslake.com.

Thank-You

Filed Under: Events, MLRA News

01 Nov

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Please Read

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We Would Encourage All Residents to Read This Park Study Report

Downloadable Copy of Park Study

This report was presented to Council in a very contentious meeting September 2nd. Two lake residents took exception to the fact that the Glendale Beach (Waterfront) Option had been removed from the table for the reasons given in the report. The report indicated that a clear majority of residents did not want a waterfront park location

Despite what can politely be called a very rude presentation by these two Lake Residents, the Mayor and Council agreed to accept the report with the exception that the Glendale Beach Proposal would also be costed.

This would at present seem to suggest that 3 major properties are being investigated…The Wagon Wheel Ranch location, The Water Tower location and the Glendale Beach location.

The Town Staff, based on recommendations and information received from the Lake residents at the two public meetings, on the resident survey and at the Town Council meeting September 2nd will now enter into negotiations with the property owners and various government agencies to determine the most appropriate site for the park location.

As you can appreciate these negotiations will be a sensitive and a lengthy process. The good news is we are one step closer to realizing the dream of a community park.

Filed Under: MLRA News

01 Nov

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Halloween Party ’08

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Thank-You Everyone for Making the 2008 Halloween Party an Overwhelming Success!!!

Special thanks to Lisa White President of the Cedarvale Community Association, who is the main organizer of this event. Thanks to Ian Feld Convener of the MLRA who helped Lisa. Thanks to Mike Feld (Most Excellent Productions) who each year donates his very entertaining DJ services and his fantastic sound equipment. Thanks to the resident volunteers who helped decorate and then restore the pavilion the next day And again SPECIAL THANKS to Cedar Beach who each year donate their fantastic facilities, without which this dance would be impossible to hold.

For pictures of this event simply click here, type the password: musselmanslake, and click on slide show.

Filed Under: Events, MLRA News

23 Sep

6 Comments

Positive Article

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Another Very Positive Article in the Stouffville Freepress

Local resident Charlene Jones wrote an excellent article on the Giant Hogweed scare and how it was dealt with promptly and efficiently by the MLRA, Councillor Bannon and the town staff. A sincere note of appreciation goes out to resident Heather Roy who first identified the offending plant and brought it to our attention.

Filed Under: MLRA News

15 Sep

4 Comments

Good News…

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Good News for Residents Who Wanted to See the South Shore Variety Store Remain Open

The Variety Store has been offered a long term lease and plans have been made to turn the remaining empty portion of the existing structure into 2 apartments on the main floor. The existing basement apartment will also be made legal for occupancy. Paul and Leo, owners of the building, held an informal meeting with residents in immediate proximity to the store, Councilor Phil Bannon and the MLRA to assure everyone the store has been given a long term lease and to review the proposed changes to the building.

Residents at the meeting were pleased with the new plan, but did express general concern about the overall maintenance and upkeep of the site. Garbage strewn around the property, graffiti and vandalism, and concerns about a proposed garbage dumpster were identified as problems with the property and residents wanted a guarantee that more attention would be paid to ensure it was properly maintained. Building owners listened to the groups’ concerns and committed to ensuring the property maintenance would be improved. Paul and Leo also sited that once the new main floor apartments were occupied, it would likely help to reduce the ongoing problems of vandalism and loitering.

The owners are to meet once more with the local residents to go over final plans before proceeding to Council for approval. It was refreshing to see a frank exchange of views between residents and the owners and to see positive progress being made.

Filed Under: MLRA News

28 Aug

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Giant Hogweed

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The Giant Hogweed Problem Seems to Have Been Centred in the Churchill Beach Area

The Giant Hogweed problem seems to have been centred in the Churchill Beach area and the offending plants have all been disposed of. Thanks to resident Heather Roy who originally identified the plant and the potential problem. Thanks also goes out to Councillor Bannon and the Town Staff for dealing with this dangerous issue so quickly. So once again please check your property to see if you have any Giant Hogweed and inform us immediately if you do but on the surface the problem seems to have been dealt with.

Filed Under: MLRA News

28 Aug

6 Comments

Park Meeting

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Important Park Meeting at Council Meeting Tues. Sept 2nd, 7:00p.m.

We would like to urge all residents to attend this meeting to show our interest in a public park for Musselman’s Lake. Our interest in a park for this area will be judged by the politicians on the number of residents coming out to show support for this venture. Please ask your neighbours to attend also.

Filed Under: Events, MLRA News