First Annual Neighbourhood Party for Churchill Drive A Great Success!
By Jane Grinnell
On Saturday August 22nd, the residents in the Lake area of Churchill Drive South and East enjoyed their first annual neighbourhood party. The area has experienced a wave of new residents over the last few years and this was a great opportunity for everyone to meet and enjoy some good food and fun. With more than 20 households participating, food was a-plenty, contributed by everyone who attended. Kids enjoyed games, including the challenge of a piñata filled with candy and all listened and danced to the music by the duo “Morris Wilson “. As the sun set, many gathered around the warmth of the bonfire. A great time was had by all. Special thanks to John and Barb McLatchie for organizing the event and kindly agreeing to host the party on their property.
Cedar Beach 80th Birthday Celebrations a Big Success!
Wow! What an amazing Saturday night we had at Musselman’s Lake thanks to Cedar Beach’s Giant Fireworks Display. This incredible event was held by Cedar Beach to not only celebrate their 80th birthday but also as a thank you to their patrons and the residents of the lake area. A much deserved, “Thank You” goes out to Cedar Beach. Everyone is looking forward to your 81st Birthday.
Cedar Beach Celebrates 80th Birthday with Giant Fireworks Display
Mark Saturday September 5th down on your Calendars… It’s going to be a really big show!!!
Last year’s Fireworks display was spectacular and this one is supposed to be even better to celebrate the 80th birthday of Cedar Beach and to say THANK-YOU to all the people that have supported them over the years. Festivities start at dusk.
Note to Boaters:
This display is set up on a barge and towed to the middle of the Lake. Late afternoon on, please keep your activity to cruising around the perimeter of the Lake and keep your boat wake to a minimum. There will be boats out BEFORE the display at dusk to help you maintain a safe distance from the barge and the fireworks.
Let’s everyone have a safe and exciting evening!
Community Updates from Phil Bannon
New Service Station:
Many residents have enquired about the construction activity associated with the south east corner of the Aurora Rd. and # 48 intersection.
At the July 28, 2009 Town Council meeting, a site plan control agreement to facilitate the construction of a gas bar, convenience store and coffee kiosk was approved.
Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Program:
I am still actively working with MTO staff and York Regional Police in an effort to reduce the number of commercial vehicles ( trucks) using Aurora Rd. On Wednesday June 24, 2009 members operated a commercial vehicle blitz at the Ballantrae Fire hall. Of the 14 vehicles inspected, 9 were taken out of service and 23 charges were laid. These numbers are totally unacceptable. The operation of unsafe motor vehicles is a threat to the life and safety of the general public. I will continue my efforts to maintain an effective level of enforcement.
New Electoral Ward Boundaries
In 1971 electoral ward boundaries were established for the newly created Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville. Those same electoral ward boundaries served the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville well for the past 38 years.
On June 23rd, 2009, Council approved the adoption of new electoral ward boundaries subject to a 45-day appeal period. The appeal period has ended and no appeals have been received. As a result, the new electoral ward boundaries will come into effect for the 2010 municipal election.
The Town will continue to be divided into six wards, each represented by one Member of Council and the selection of the Mayor will be conducted Town-wide.
Please visit www.philbannon.ca to review the new ward boundaries map.
Fast Thinking Street Cleaner Operator Comes to Rescue
Tues. June 30th Fast thinking street cleaner operator spots a fire on Ninth Line and uses vehicle to put out fire. Photos courtesy of Dr Laing. More details to follow.
Smithville Lake Fish Die-Off
Dan Wigmore, MLRA Science committee has discovered a similar “Crappie” experience in the U.S. This documented occurrence would appear to verify Dr Laing’s initial impression of “Columnaris” being the culprit. Please read below.
Subject: Smithville Lake Fish Die-Off
I have completed the initial investigation of the Smithville Lake crappie die-off. The kill is exclusively black crappie so far. The black crappie population is in transition from a stunted, older population to a younger, faster growing population. I will be doing some age analysis of the dead to determine if this is the case. The fish look fine until you look at their gills. They have lesions on their gills suggesting an outbreak of Columnaris flexibacter bacteria. I took some sick/dying fish to Devona Wierich, our Fish Pathologist, today and she confirmed the lesions are Columnaris. She will also be looking for other possible contributing factors in coming days.
Columnaris is always present in fish, but typically becomes an issue only in stressed fish. Our water temperatures have been slow to warm this year creating an ideal condition for these bacteria to thrive. Couple this with older, stunted fish and you have the recipe for what is happening. The good news is we’ve wanted these fish out of the system for several years, just not this dramatically!
The take-home message to fishermen should be that this, while dramatic, is a fairly natural occurrence. Any crappie they catch, are safe to eat and that this may continue for a few more days. I will continue to monitor the situation until the event is completed. Picking up thousands of dead fish scattered over a couple thousand acres is impossible. Given the expected heat in the coming days, the fish should decompose very rapidly. Scavengers are also removing many of the carcases. There are also no water quality issues causing the fish kill.
Please pass this information on to your staff who may have to deal with questions from the public.
Fisheries Management Biologist
Missouri Department of Conservation
1 Victory Drive, STE 100
Liberty, MO 64068
Anxious to Hear What’s Happening With the Park?
We know residents are anxious to hear what’s happening with the Park. We just have to be patient a little while longer. Councillor Bannon has said the negotiations are proceeding smoothly and there should be an announcement barring any unforeseen complications sometime before the end of the year. This announcement should take place at a public residents meeting and the time and location will be published in advance on this site.
M.L.R.A. Website Continues to Grow
Google analysis during the month of June showed we had 1,305 visitors to the site up from 690 in April. We had 989 new visitors to the site and 316 returning visitors. There were 57 visitors from the U.S., 4 from the United Kingdom and 1 each from New Zealand, Netherlands, Australia, Switzerland and Hong Kong.
Cedar Beach Park is Good for a Swim
Despite the massive Crappie die off that we experienced at the Lake, Cedar Beach continues to test okay for swimmers. This is without a doubt due to fast action by residents and the MLRA executive to remove the dead fish from the Lake.
Please do not hesitate to plan to visit Cedar Beach with family and friends to go for a dip in the Lake. For the latest water test results please look under Lake Updates – Water Testing.
Councillor Bannon has Issued an Alert
Warning Giant Hogweed
I would like to thank Lois Sterling for contacting me and making me aware of the presence of the Giant Hogweed presently growing on Churchill Beach and on the north side of Churchill East. These are the same locations they were located last year.
I have contacted our Leisure Services staff. They have attended and confirmed that the plant is the Giant Hogweed. The plants will be removed. Due to the pesticide ban, town staff are reviewing options to ensure that this problem does not re-occur.
The Giant Hogweed, Heracleum mantegazzianum, is an invasive plant that looks similar to cow parsnip, but poses a serious threat to natural ecosystems and human health. The Giant Hogweed can reach an impressive height of 15 feet when flowering. The hollow stems are 2 to 4 inches in diameter. Leaves are deeply lobed and toothed. The large blossom consists of numerous white flowers clustered in an umbrella-shaped head that is more that 2 feet across. Most plant parts are covered in stiff white hairs that are filled with sap.
The sap found in the Giant Hogweed stem and stem hairs causes phytophotodermatitis, a serious skin inflammation activated by exposure to the sun. Symptoms typically consist of painful blisters that form within 48 hours of exposure, and pigmented scars that can last up to 6 years.
To remove these plants from your own property:
● wear protective clothing, including gloves, long sleeves,
pants and eye protection;
● immediately remove any flower heads to prevent
seed growth and dispersal;
● sever the plant roots 8-12 cm below the soil surface;
● dispose of all plant parts in double-bagged garbage bags,
and DO NOT COMPOST;
● return to plant site periodically to remove any new plant growth.