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Archive for: 11月, 2020

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GREY HIGHLANDS – Police charged a 20-year-old passenger in a minivan with criminal negligence following a fatal collision involving the minivan and a horse-drawn vehicle carrying nine people Sunday in Grey Highlands. Melinda Bowman, 5, of Grey Highlands was pronounced dead in hospital after the 9:32 a.m. crash on Highway 10, while a 26-year-old woman from Southgate, whom police did not name, remains in a Toronto hospital in critical condition, police said in a news release. Police charged Alex Silk, of Belleville, with criminal negligence causing death and three counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm. He remains in custody and is scheduled to appear in Owen Sound bail court by audio link Thursday. Police said four adults and five children ranging in age from eight months to five years of age were riding in the horse-drawn vehicle. Police did not disclose in news releases the circumstances of the outing. Police declined to say more, citing protection of the integrity of the investigation. The remaining seven people were treated and released from hospital. The minivan driver, a 60-year old from Marmora and Lake Township,  north of Belleville, and a passenger, received minor injuries. Police said both vehicles were southbound on Highway 10 when a Pontiac Montana minivan and the horse-drawn vehicle collided between Road 180 and 190. Grey Highlands Fire Department and paramedics from Grey and Dufferin responded along with police. The police investigation is ongoing under the direction of Det. Insp. Andy Raffay of the OPP Criminal Investigations Branch. Police ask anyone with information concerning this collision to contact Grey County OPP at 519-794-7827 or call toll-free 1-888-310-1122.


INNISFIL – Three men are facing charges after South Simcoe police say they were spotted speeding on off-road vehicles Wednesday afternoon. Police say an officer patrolling Innisfil Beach Road in Alcona spotted the vehicles – an ATV and two dirt bikes – approaching at a high rate of speed around 2:20 p.m.. Off-road vehicles are permitted to operate on Innisfil roads, but must maintain a speed of no more that 20 km/h in a 50 km/h zone. Police say the officer clocked one vehicle travelling at 81 km/h and the other two at 71 km/h. According to police, they sped up as they passed the police car. At the intersection of Adullam Drive, one dirt bike made the turn and continued north. The second spun out, police say, and the ATV driver stopped to render assistance. When the officer ?arrived, both drivers were apprehended. The dirt bike driver was not injured. The two men, both from Brampton, are now facing numerous charges. The dirt bike driver was charged with six offences, including stunt driving and had his licence suspended for seven days and his vehicle impounded. The ATV driver, who police say was wearing an unapproved helmet, was charged with five offences, including stunt driving and driving without a licence. His vehicle was also impounded for seven days. ?The second dirt bike driver who fled the scene turned himself in Thursday. The Innisfil man was charged with four offences, including stunt driving. His?licence was suspended for seven days and his vehicle impounded.??


It could be a lose-lose scenario for the city on the south-Barrie high school front. The public school board filed an Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) appeal, as of 10 a.m. Wednesday, on city council’s rejection of the project’s site plan. But even if the Simcoe County District School Board loses at the OMB, it doesn’t need to build a new secondary school at 225 Prince William Way says Coun. Mike McCann, who represents this part of Barrie. “The problem with the OMB is that even if they (SCDSB) lose, they don’t lose,” he said Wednesday afternoon, clearly frustrated by the process and what else could be lost. “It means time. It means students and families are going to have to waste their time and their money and taxpayers’ financial resources, to settle this at the OMB,” McCann said. “And the thing that just gets under my skin the most, is that even if the city wins, the OMB is not binding to the school board and we could be nine months or a year in exactly the same position that we are right now.” Barrie school board trustee Jennifer Cameron, who represents this area, could not be reached for comment Wednesday by the Examiner. The crux of the dispute is the board wants the new high school to be built on the southern portion of the site, for safety and cost reasons, while city council wants it on the northern portion to conform with the Hewitt’s Secondary Plan and urban design guidelines. Essentially, neither side has budged since council turned down the school board’s site plan last October. McCann suggested another solution to the impasse, but it didn’t take. “Unfortunately, the process with the OMB is not as fast as binding arbitration or third-party arbitration, like I suggested back in January,” he said. “We would have already had an answer by now, and we could have had it binding, which means that whatever answer the arbitrator would have given, that’s what would be done. “So if we lost we would have accepted it, and if the school board would have lost they would have had to build the school.” The OMB appeal was submitted by John Dance, SCDSB facility services superintendent. It says the board is appealing requirements imposed by the city. The site plan was denied by city council on Oct. 26, 2015, the OMB appeal says. ‘City of Barrie site plan control requirements for processing required the relocation of the proposed building footprint and playing fields’, the appeal states. ‘Simcoe County District School Board maintains the proposed location better meets the functional and site specific requirements of the proposed secondary school.’ SCDSB says it will call five witnesses at the hearing – a land use planner, an urban design planner, a civil engineer, an architect and a landscape architect. No hearing date has been scheduled for the OMB appeal. Under the Ontario Planning Act, a landowner may appeal to the OMB if the municipality fails to approve its plans 30 days after submission, or if the landowner is not satisfied with any requirement. The school board was to receive $27.5 million in Ontario Education Ministry funding to build the new high school. The board’s plans are for a 135,625-sq.-ft., split-level school there for just more than 1,000 students. The site would also have two sports fields, a rubber running track, parking and enough room for 15 portable classrooms. The public board is closing Barrie Central Collegiate in June and its students will attend Barrie North Collegiate and Innisdale Secondary School. The students who would attend the new South Barrie Secondary School are ones who are currently within the Innisdale attendance area. The new high school wouldn’t be ready for students any earlier than September 2018.


MIDLAND – Whether they liked it or not, the Midland Indians and their junior counterparts, the Twins, got some time off from North Dufferin Baseball League action. Inclement weather forced the cancellation of an Indians game Saturday and a Twins game Sunday, although both teams have still been able to get in some early-season action. On May 12, the Indians blanked Nobleton 3-0 to improve their regular-season record to 3-0. Nick Boyd went the distance on the mound for Midland, allowing only four hits. “Nick was looking really good,” said manager Steve Lafreniere. “His curveball is keeping hitters off balance and makes his fastball look even faster.” In seven innings, Boyd struck out eight batters while issuing no walks. Nathan Dix scored two runs for Midland, while Tyler Boyd contributed two hits. Despite being at 3-0 to start the season, Lafreniere said there is room for improvement. “(The team) is a little behind from the standpoint of pitching and defensive play, but we’ve had some key hits in games and I am sure some big innings are just around the corner,” he said. The Indians are scheduled to host the Lisle Astros on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Twins took it on the chin Saturday in Mansfield, losing 9-1 to the Cubs. Jake Flower started on the mound for Midland and surrendered nine hits and seven runs in 4 1/3 innings. He walked three batters and struck out four. Tyler Cascagnette came on in relief and gave up one hit and two runs in 1 2/3 innings. Jared Aube scored the only run for the Twins, while also collecting a hit. Sam DeCock also added one hit. The Twins are scheduled to play back-to-back road games against the Ivy Rangers on May 19 and 24. On May 31 at 7 p.m., the Twins will host Mansfield at Tiffin Park.

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A Nottawa native has taken his first step towards playing in the National Hockey League. READ MORE: Allan McShane, 16, was drafted 19th overall by the Erie Otters in the Ontario Hockey League draft on Saturday. McShane, 16, played for Collingwood Minor Hockey when he was at the atom level, but has spent the last four seasons with the Toronto Marlboros AAA team. Erie has produced several prominent NHL players over the last number of years, including 2015 first overall pick and rookie phenomenon Connor McDavid. “The organization is known for its development and bringing up some talented players,” McShane said. “It’s run by great people, it seems like a warm community, I’m looking forward to starting my career there.” McShane represented Canada at the recent World Youth Olympics, leading the team in goals. The 5-11, centre, knew he’d be drafted in the first round and was pleased to find out he was heading to Erie. McShane said he’s already had conversation with team officials and is excited to get started. “They like the style of game I play, they think it will suit what they’re looking for in Erie,” McShane said. He will attend their rookie camp next month is hoping to play with the Otters in the fall. He played up a level, Minor Midget AAA last season, and believes this gives him confidence that he can step right into the OHL. “I’m pretty set on cracking the roster next year,” he said. “I almost feel a bit comfortable and I feel a bit better when I’m against tougher competition and older players.” McShane plans to work on all facets of his game this summer and is working with strength and conditioning coach Andy O’Brien, who works with NHL players Sidney Crosby and Matt Duchesne. “He really takes me under his wing and supports me throughout the summer,” McShane said.

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In two weeks’ time, Orillia will become the county’s capital of Canadiana for a weekend. The second annual Roots North Music Festival will take place April 22 and 23 at various venues throughout the city’s downtown core. Headline shows will take place each night at the Orillia Community Church (OCC), featuring Elliott Brood April 22 and Old Man Luedecke April 23. The genesis of the festival stems from Mike Rothwell, of Alleycats Music and Art, bringing together like-minded music lovers in Orillia to develop an idea that could bring people into the city, specifically its downtown, during the shoulder season. With a diverse lineup of up-and-coming Canadian talent, helping bringing Orillia residents and out-of-towners "out of hibernation," the first Roots North was a success, in the eyes of organizers. This year looks to be no different, particularly with the variety of talent scheduled to come to town, including Beams, Nick Ferrio and Kristine Schmitt. "We’ve really gone out of our way to try and program something eclectic and that will appeal to a wide demographic," said Sarah Duffy, one of the organizers of the festival. "We didn’t want to pigeonhole ourselves … It just kind of allows you to explore what we’re really passionate about, which is good music." At the same time, Duffy and her colleagues want to give festival goers the most bang for their buck. Few things can be more annoying than having to choose between two bands playing at the same time. For the most part, that’s not going to happen this year. "We’re trying to be really mindful that we’re not programming anything conflicting with each other," Duffy said. "So, you have a chance to go from venue to venue and see everything and (the bands are) not competing against each other." And there are a lot more venues this year. The atmosphere created during the Saturday afternoon last year was a highlight for many, so organizers are attempting to grow that portion of the festival in particular. Performance venues include Brewery Bay Food Company, Hog ‘N Penny, Apple Annie’s Café, Alleycats, Carousel Collectables, the Orillia Farmers’ Market and Harold + Ferne: The Local Goods Co. Joining Duffy in organizing the festival is Amy Mangan, who has been behind the scenes at many events throughout the area, including the Mariposa Folk Festival. She wasn’t part of Roots North’s first year but was excited to join in the planning for Round 2, as she was looking for something new. "Roots is just one of those festivals that amazes me," Mangan said. "And it’s local, too. We celebrate local artists, local businesses and the arts." Also new this year will be an expansion of the artisan market, which will be featured in the OCC alongside merchandise from participating bands and the festival itself.  Last year’s success and the optimism surrounding the festival going forward fills the organizers with many ideas. Roots North may never reach the scale or style of Mariposa, but it may take a cue from other club-heavy productions, such as Toronto’s Canadian Music Week or North By Northeast. "Somewhere down the line, I’d love to see some a wristband that gets you into all the different venues and maybe have some more activity during the day — maybe some workshops and things like that," Duffy said. "That’s the direction we’d like to go. Right now, we’re sort of trying to … not get ahead of ourselves." A weekend pass for the festival, guaranteeing admission to the OCC shows and bypassing cover (subject to capacity) at The Brownstone, costs $45. Passes can be purchased at or at Alleycats, Carousel Collectables and Kahuna Surf Shop. 


MIDLAND – A local man faces weapon and drug charges after police raided a home here Wednesday. Midland police used a search warrant at the east-side home and seized a quantity of marijuana. Its street value was estimated at $1,170. A 26-year-old Midland man was arrested and charged with drug possession and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose. Police did not identify the weapon. The man was later released with a Midland court date in late-April. 

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An Orillia group with a history of supporting vulnerable seniors is eying a recently vacated high school for affordable housing. Cam Davidson and other members of a volunteer committee will pitch their proposal for the ‘Orillia Centre Residence and Social Service Hub’ during a presentation to council tonight (April 11). The group says it hopes to repurpose the former OD/Park Secondary School to include 70 affordable housing units for seniors, as well as alternate-level-of-care beds to alleviate pressure on the hospital. Other community agencies and services could be accommodated as well, the group adds in a letter. “We have been working with the city council and the mayor to approach the board of education in an attempt to work out an agreement whereby the city would be able to obtain an option on the building,” said Davidson. “This would allow us to move forward with fundraising efforts, engineering plans and feasibility studies.” The group is responsible for Hillcrest Lodge, which provides assisted living for seniors in need.


A woman wanted for using a stolen credit card at Tim Hortons on Good Friday has been arrested. Barrie police say a woman who had left her credit card on a table returned to find it stolen. However, shortly after 1 p.m., video surveillance showed another woman using the stolen TD Visa card at the Tim Hortons at 226 Essa Rd. Police released a security camera image of the suspect on social media and say tips lead to her arrest. She goes to court in May.


MIDLAND – Some three weeks after taking part in “the adventure of a lifetime,” members of the Midland Civitan Hawks floor hockey team can’t stop smiling. Winning a bronze medal at the 2016 Special Olympics Canada Winter Games in Newfoundland and Labrador was just part of a memorable trip for players and coaches alike. “(The players) had a blast on and off the arena floor,” said coach Keith Bellisle. “For a lot of them, it was the adventure of a lifetime.” The Hawks earned bronze in Corner Brook by defeating Nova Scotia in back-to-back games on the final day of play. Bellisle said collecting the medals was the perfect ending to a trip filled with great memories and a lot of floor hockey. “Even when we had our defeats, everyone gave 100 per cent in every game,” he said. “It didn’t matter what the score was, because they had huge hearts and drive and they were awesome.” While Bellisle indicated he was proud of how the entire team played, he gave credit to his all-female “Monster Line” for their strong performance at the tournament. “They play against the top lines from other teams and they just play their hearts out,” he said. “They are incredible.” Bellisle said the Hawks eagerly participated in the non-competitive activities, marching in the opening and closing ceremonies and meeting new friends at a dance organized by their hosts. “They had a total blast,” said Bellisle. The Hawks concluded their floor hockey season this past weekend with the hosting of an invitational tournament. “Already they are pumped to get back out on the road,” said Bellisle. “They’ve already said they’re going back to nationals…. It’s a long road, but with this group of hard-working players, I wouldn’t count them out.”