Thursday, June 2, 2011

Clean-Up, Tory Tussle, and Video Victories

Call to Clean-Up

This weekend is the 32nd annual Speed River Clean-Up organized by the Guelph branch of the Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG). Brought to you by Wellington Water Watchers, Trout Unlimited and GUFF (Guelph Urban Forest Friends), the Clean-Up, as always, aims to educate people about the importance of Guelph’s waterways, get them involved and in the river to literally take out the trash.

Like in years gone by, everyone is to meet up at the gazebo in Royal City Park (Gordon Street) by 11 am. Bring your gloves, sun gear, water and a pair of either old shoes, boots or hip waders. Then sign-in, join a group and start cleaning up the river. Afterward at around 12:30, everyone’s invited back to McCrae House for some eats and some entertainment. The theme is pot luck, so volunteers are being asked to bring a dish to share, and for each dish contributed, you will be entered in a draw to win two tickets to the Speed River Fundraising Dinner at Borealis Grille, a $120 value. Additionally, volunteers are being asked to bring their own plates and utensils to cut down on waste.

If you’re looking to get even more involved, OPIRG is looking for volunteers to take on specific jobs at the Clean Up. Among the list of jobs needed to be filled are crew leaders, photographers, set-up and take-down volunteers, and people to help out at the potluck. For more information, get in touch with OPIRG at 519-824-2091 or at

A Trio of Tories Tussle

Three nominees have put their names forward for the local Progressive Conservative nomination in this fall’s Provincial Election. John F. Ross high school teacher Greg Cawsey, entrepreneur Greg Schirk and businessman and former pastor Bob Senechal are the three who will be metaphorically duking it out to get their name on the ballot for the PCs, said a news release. “These three candidates bring a wide range of qualities that will allow any one of them to represent Guelph well in Queen’s Park,” said local PC riding association president Allan Boynton in the release. Cawsey ran the business department at Ross, Schirk once owned Royal City Glass, but now works for PM Doors and Windows, and Senechal has been a partner for the past 11 years in CG Maintenance. He also ran as the PC Party’s candidate against Liberal Liz Sandals in the 2007 provincial election.

In other news, the day and time for the first all-candidates debate of the fall election has been established. Look for The Guelph-Wellington Social Justice Coalition hosted forum on Sept. 13 at the Italian Canadian Club. Presumably, the Coalition is looking to avoid any situation where a candidate says that they didn’t get enough notice and have something already book.

The Hanlon Hacks It

The Phase One lands of the Hanlon Creek Business Park have satisfied all conditions of Draft Plan of Subdivision approval and have now achieved Registered Plan status at the land registry office. I don’t know what that means, but the City thought it was a big enough deal to write a press release about it. “What this means, is that title to these lands are now able to be transferred to potential end purchasers” says Jim Mairs, Senior Business Development Specialist, Economic Development and Tourism Services, in the release.

“We are extremely pleased with the completion of this next stage,” says Peter Cartwright, General Manager of Economic Development and Tourism Services. “In order to register this Phase approximately 50 conditions imposed by various government and review agencies needed to be addressed and approved. It is further validation of the commitment this Park has to the environment and the development process.”

All-in-all, 16 acres of land, in various stages of development in the Hanlon Creek Business Park representing nearly $5 million in revenue for the city, are ready. The total land acquired by the City for the Business Park property is about 420 acres, but a percentage of that will be preserved as green space.

Video Victories on Two Counts

As one video contest wraps another begins. Voting for the viewer’s choice favourite “I love Guelph tap water” video closed this past Monday, but the winners won’t be announced until June 15th. Various high tech prizes will be awarded to the first, second and third place finisher, and people’s choice winner will designate a favourite charity to receive a $500 donation. Next up are videos for Guelph Tourism. Go to and vote for your favourite video promoting the Royal City as a tourist destination and the winner will receive $100 in prizes. The winner will be announced during the closing ceremonies of Tourism Awareness Week on June 10 at 1:00pm at City Hall.

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