Grandma’s Beach Treats was named business of the year Saturday at the Wasaga Beach Chamber of Commerce business award ceremony. Named to convey the good old-fashioned products that it sells, Grandma’s Beach Treats is best known for its ice cream, caramel corn and butter tarts. Owner Sylvia Bray said the recipe for her gourmet caramel popcorn is derived from one her husband’s grandmother used to make. The pies and tarts are made onsite by baker Liz Mott. The popcorn is also made onsite and the fudge, peanut brittle, cookies, candy and other treats are carefully sourced from suppliers that make their products by hand, using simple old-fashioned ingredients. Bray said she chose to sell Kawartha Dairy Company ice cream for the same reason – because it is made with fresh milk and cream. She is the only vendor in Wasaga Beach that carries the brand. Bray and her husband, Mark Winegarden, bought the building that is home to Grandma’s Beach Treats at 1014 Mosley St., five years ago. Together they also own H.E. Carpet and Flooring, which operates out of the same building. "It all began with the caramel corn," said Bray. Grandma’s Beach Treats began four years ago, serving caramel corn. But Bray said they began expanding the menu to include slushies and continually brought in new products, which required them to expand the store. Winegarden said they have always catered to their customers. He said the pie selection has increased to suit their customers, with some flavours being made on request. The popcorn selection has increased as well and they now have about 30 flavours available and often mix and match. Grandma’s Beach Treats is a family business, with Bray and Winegarden’s four children – all in their teens and early twenties – working in the business in some capacity. Bray said they have an emphasis on customer service and although it is often busy in the summer and there are three to four people working to fill orders, every customer receives a friendly greeting upon entering the store. Winegarden refers to Grandma’s Beach Treats’ products as an affordable luxury; something small with which to treat one’s self, especially the pies and tarts, which most people don’t make at home. They offer a butter tart and coffee combo in addition to hot chocolate, ice cream floats and milkshakes. Grandma’s Beach Treats opens daily at 9 a.m. and remains open until about 10 p.m. with the exception of Sundays when it opens at noon. Other winners Saturday include Beach Design ‘n Print for tourism marketing, Dr. Susan Andrus of Wasaga Beach Veterinary Clinic was named entrepreneur of the year, Boston Pizza for corporate community involvement, Active Healthcare Centre was named professional service business of the year, Elmvale Jungle Zoo was named tourism business of the year, Beachfront Developments for site enhancement of the main beach area, Beverly Wood of Beverly’s On Main was presented the business ambassador award, Dr. Sarah Adams of Beach Chiropractic and Wellness Centre was given the Athena Award and the Osborne family, proprietors of the Jewel Box were presented the Gene Langevin Award.
Ontario Progressive Conservative Party leadership hopeful Tim Hudak says he wants to restore middle class values. Hudak made the comment in a speech to about 60 party members at a breakfast meeting at the Royal Canadian Legion in Creemore on Saturday. Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson, a Hudak supporter, hosted the event. Wilson told The Sun that he chose Hudak, the member for Niagara West-Glanbrook, over other leadership contenders, Frank Klees, Randy Hillier and Christine Elliot because, “I worked with him for 14 years and found him to be intelligent, competent and honest.” Hudak was Wilson’s parliamentary assistant. Introducing Hudak to the gathering, Wilson said he was impressed by Hudak when, “I was mining minister after him and people kept asking, ‘where’s Tim?’” Wilson refers to Hudak as, “the man who saved the moose.” When the painted plastic moose craze, started by then Toronto mayor Mel Lastman, spread north, Wilson was using one as a charity fund-raising promotional prop. Vandals stole his moose. “Tim said, ‘I have a spare moose,’ and brought it up,” Wilson recalled. Wilson said his original moose was later found by the OPP, adding that police said it had been “murdered” and thrown into a ditch. Taking the podium, Hudak said, since then, he’s found it “politically savvy to always have a spare moose.” Hudak told his audience that “(Premier) Dalton McGuinty has had the province on auto pilot for the past five years” and has run up the deficit to an all time high of $14.1 billion, even outspending former NDP premier Bob Rae. He said it’s that kind of spending that has made Ontario a have-not province, adding that his grandparents, who came here from Eastern Europe, would have been shocked at the idea of their adopted province being labeled one of the have-nots. Under McGuinty, the Sunshine List (public servants making over $100,000 a year) has increased by 165 per cent, Hudak pointed out. He said that includes 11 people in the premier’s office. Hudak compared those on the Sunshine List with the many people across the province that, in these economic times, face the decision of whether to put food on the table or pay the rent. One of Hudak’s suggestions is that parents be able to start a $1,000 savings account for each newborn child, which could be contributed to by relatives and would grow tax-free until the child reaches age 18. Then the teen would have the choice of how to use the money. He also aims to improve the education system by enhancing the use of phonics in elementary school and by promoting financial and economic literacy at the secondary school level. To turn the province around, tough decisions are needed, Hudak said, reminding his audience that the government of (former PC Premier) Mike Harris, “made Ontario number one in North America in job creation.” Hudak has a Bachelor of Economics degree, has worked in tourism, helped Wal-Mart Canada launch its stores in this country and served at one time as a Canada Customs border inspector. He joked that as a customs officer, when he saw anyone from Wasaga Beach, Creemore or Collingwood at the border, “I always let you go up the highway with no questions asked. With those from Stayner, it was a different story,” he quipped, much to the delight of his audience. Following his speech, Hudak told The Sun that he has fond memories of traveling with his parents to Wasaga Beach from their home in Sarnia. He said, “the fire (Beach One Nov. ’07) was a set-back” but expressed confidence that “the Wasaga Beach spirit” has prevailed to get things back on track in short order. Hudak now lives in Wellandport with his wife, Debbie, and their daughter, Miller. He was first elected to the Ontario Legislature in 1995 as the Member for Niagara South. Since then he has served as the Minister of Consumer and Business Services, the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Recreation, the Minister of Northern Development and Mines and was Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Health, Jim Wilson. Voting for the party’s new leader takes place at two locations in the riding – the Wasaga RecPlex, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. June 21, 2009 and the Alliston Legion, 3:00 to 10:00 p.m. June 25. Those wishing to cast a ballot must obtain a 2009 Ontario PC membership by May 14.
A $100,000 sports car was stolen from a garage in Tiny Township last week. Southern Georgian Bay OPP report there are no suspects in the theft of a 2004 Shelby Hite kit car on Tiny Beaches Road South, which was reported stolen on April 29. Police have determined entry to the garage was made by forcing a door. The stolen car is a blue hardtop with a white stripe down the centre. It bore an Ontario licence plate with the number AYFZ 478. Anyone with information about this crime can call 526-3761 or at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477), or submit a tip online at .
Parents are always concerned about keeping their children safe. A free presentation Tuesday, May 12 at Beaver Valley Community School will offer ways to keep both parents and children safer on the world’s largest social networking site. Facebook 101 focusses on how to maximize Facebook settings with an emphasis on safety, security and privacy. The presentation will talk about "friends, acquaintances and strangers" and the potential impact they can have on a real-world reputation and career. Presenter Chris Vollum is based in Oakville. A parent of two children, Vollum was "shocked" at the security and privacy flaws he found in Facebook when his children began using it. His Facebook 101 workshop is designed to show parents, students, teachers and school administrators how to apply Facebook settings to minimize privacy breaches and defend against becoming a victim of cyber-bullying. Facebook 101 has been presented in schools throughout Toronto, southwestern and central Ontario and has been called a "must see" by numerous principals, teachers and parents who have taken part in it. "Using vivid demonstrations, examples of success and horror stories, Chris Vollum’s workshop on Facebook can help you or a family member immensely as he walks you through the important aspects of managing your Facebook presence," said Lynn Wilson, a parent council co-chair from Brant Hills Elementary School, after she’d seen the workshop. "In a time when many employers routinely scan Facebook for insights on potential employees, it pays to know who can access you on Facebook and how much they can see. Vollum references situations that students can relate to in his presentation and emphasizes critical thinking and responsible action for students who choose to use Facebook. We highly recommend Vollum’s workshop to both new and experienced Facebook users of all ages." Facebook is the world’s largest social networking site with more than 175 users worldwide. It is also Canada’s most visited site. Facebook 101 will show participants how to set Facebook’s basic and advanced, search, privacy and posting tools. It will show what happens when you download any of Facebook’s more than 50,000 third-party applications such as FunSpace, Top Friends and Bumper Stickers. It will also show how to distinguish between a Facebook friend, acquintance and stranger, and the potential impact it can have on your real-world reputation and career. In addition, you’ll learn the critical question every student must ask before they add a Facebook friend, how to limit access to certain Facebook friends and allow full access to others, what really happens to the information you post to your profile and to your friend’s profiles, what employers and university admissions officers are doing with your Facebook profile and how to reinvent your Facebook profile into a powerful and substantive résumé. The presentation is being offered to students in Grades 6 to 8 at both Meaford Community School and BVCS during the day on Tuesday, May 12. Older students are welcome at the evening presentation at BVCS and childcare is available for younger children. All three presentations are being made available by the joint efforts of the school community councils of MCS and BVCS.
A bylaw that would have placed greater restrictions on hunting activities within town boundaries has been sent back to municipal staff for review. At the Wednesday, May 6 meeting, council was prepared to pass a bylaw regulating the discharge of firearms that could have prevented hunters from operating in any areas deemed “urban” within Innisfil, such as Alcona, Churchill, Gilford and sections of Big Bay Point. But residents appeared before council to tell them the staff report they were considering contained out-of-date information. “Innisfil is unique with its rural and urban mix. Hunting is a safe activity,” stated Darren Parfit of Alcona. “On the surface, this bylaw seems to cater to developers. I would like to see the matter deferred.” The outdated bylaw was first raised in May 2008 by development lawyer Marvin Geist, who wanted council to ban hunting within Leonard’s Wetlands in north Alcona. If hunting were banned in the wetlands it could end its “provincial significance” status, which would make it easier to develop near the area. Planning director Robert McAuley told council last month safety was the primary goal of the proposed bylaw not whether it would make development easier. Greg Farrant, government relations and communications manager of the Ontario Federation of Anglers & Hunters also spoke in favour of deferring any decision. He pointed out there were already federal and provincial statutes covering hunting, and council should take into account the “frequency of complaints and number of convictions” regarding hunters locally. “No one should hunt near a residential area, or near a school,” Farrant said, “but hunting should be able to co-exist with other public uses.” Firearms enthusiast Ben Valentine noted the firearms discharge bylaw as presented, could possibly include construction tools such as air-powered nail guns and pneumatic drills.“There are very few good municipal bylaws dealing with firearms discharge,” Valentine said. “I’m hoping we can create the best bylaw we can.” Council agreed and sent the bylaw back to be revised, with the input of Valentine, Farrant and South Simcoe Police Service.
The province of Ontario is now enforcing the cosmetic pesticide ban in Collingwood. Wendy Martin, the town’s greenspace manager, made a presentation to council on Monday, explaining the province’s new pesticide ban that came into effect on Apr. 22. The provincial ban makes the municipal ban void. The legislation makes it illegal to use pesticides – including products like weed and feed – on lawns, flowers, vegetables, patios and driveways. The ban does allow the use of products such as corn gluten meal and garden sulfur. Pesticides such as insect repellant, rat and mice bait and ant killer can be used on species that bite, sting or cause damage to structure- such as termites. Products can also be used to kill mosquitoes, wasps and plants such as poison ivy. The provincial ban is similar to the municipal ban but does allow for the use of pesticides to deal with infestations on the outside structure of a home. The province will be enforcing the ban by education and outreach, inspections and complaints. "Retailers are not allowed to sell controlled products without a vendor license," Martin said. Counc. Sonny Foley didn’t understand why products such as Round-Up can’t be used to deal with grubs and weeds. He said the product is considered safe by the federal government. "Are we just going to let the whole town go to rack and ruin," Foley said. "The province thinks they are smarter than the federal government."
Police divers have recovered the body of a Tiny Township man missing since April 17. Just before 6 p.m. Monday, members of the Ontario Provincial Police underwater search and recovery unit located the body of 29-year-old Nick Dusome in Penetanguishene Bay after an exhaustive search that lasted almost one week. They had been searching the water in and around the bay for the past five days utilizing side-scan sonar when they made the discovery in an area near the Northwest Basin Marina. Dusome was reported missing to Southern Georgian Bay OPP on April 20 at 8:30 p.m. by concerned family members. Dusome immediately became the subject of an intense search that saw air and water resources from the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre (JRCC) in Trenton utilized along with the Canadian Coast Guard vessel Cape Providence, which is based in Meaford. Numerous OPP marine units were also involved in the expansive water search, which included trained marine officers from Southern Georgian Bay OPP, West Parry Sound OPP, the Central Region traffic and marine unit, and the Central Region SAVE (Snowmobile All-Terrain Vessel Enforcement) team. In addition to searching the water, the OPP were also assisted on land by the Central Region emergency response team, which conducted shoreline patrols along the Penetanguishene Bay area and in the air. An OPP helicopter, was also utilized. The exact cause of Dusome’s death has not yet been determined. A post-mortem examination is scheduled for today (Tuesday) at Royal Victoria Hospital in Barrie. In a press release, the OPP and the Dusome family thanked all those who volunteered over the past week in various searches that were conducted with the hope of locating Dusome. The OPP also extended its appreciation to members of the public who contacted investigators with information they believed might have been of importance in locating Dusome.
Avon representative and event organizer Laura Koekkoek, shows some of the products she had available at the Shop-a-ganza event held at the Lions Hall in Alliston last Saturday. The show featured a variety of products from home-based women entrepreneurs with a portion of the proceeds from the event going to breast cancer research.