Discover Tillsonburg Magazine - Summer 2016 featuring Turtlefest.

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AUGUST 36, 2016 SALES Sidewalk



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Turtlefest returns Three full days of family fun!

Schedule on p.14-15

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#DidYouKnowTBG How well do you know Tillsonburg? Summer Activities Guide Ideas for keeping the kids in your life busy all summer long Drop in at the Upper Deck Tillsonburg’s youth centre reaches out


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Seize your summer Think there’s nothing new to do under the sun? Think again.

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Discover Tillsonburg Magazine is published by the Town of Tillsonburg, in partnership with local builders and other community partners.

Editorial & Design Colleen Pepper Advertising Shelley Imbeault 519.688.3009 ext. 3231


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BLOCK PARTY D O W N T O W N Join us on Broadway for hot entertainment acts and the biggest party of the year! T he 2016 Turtlefest Block Party will kick off with Mayor Stephen

“His performance last year was phenomenal and combined skate- boarding, fire-breathing, fire jug- gling and even LED light tricks.” Joining Brant will be fellow busk- ers Tim Holland (a.k.a. The Puppet Tamer ), John Park (a.k.a. The Fun- ny Waiter ), and even one absurdly large chef. (Trust us, you’ll under- stand when you see him.) Hungry? Irene Hurley and the staff at Hurley’s Mattress and Ap- pliance will fire up the grill begin- ning at 4:00 p.m., in support of the BIA’s various Downtown Beautifi- cation projects. The store parking lot will also be the site for an outdoor basketball game featuring the Till- sonburg Firefighters at 6:15 p.m.

If you’d rather shoot your own hoops, head back up Broadway for Full Court Press , a giant inflatable game that will test your basketball free throw ability. Think you’re good at soccer? Try being attached by a tether to your teammates in Human Foosball and see what happens. For animal lovers, there are sev- eral booths that will help you get closer to nature. Thanks to the gen- erosity of local dentist, Dr. Michael Nguyen, Hands On Exotics will be bringing an assortment of furry friends to the party, including a live kangaroo . Or, if creepy crawly things are more your speed, be sure to slither over to the Tillsonburg Town Cen-

Molnar handing out delicious cup- cakes during the Metro Opening Ceremonies , but from there, the eve- ning promises to only get sweeter. “We’re so excited to have Brant Matthews (a.k.a. FireGuy ) back with us,” explains Virginia Armstrong, Executive Director of the Business Improvement Association.

FRIDAY June 17

The Funny Waiter

The Fire Guy

The Puppet Tamer


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Meyer Chiropractic a foundation for wellness 130 Broadway

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Photo: David Baird

their zones—from free massages to interactive games and activities.” “The idea behind the Block Party has always been to get people meet- ing their local merchants and talk- ing with their neighbours,” adds BIA Promotions Committee Chair, Lori Arnold. “The social interaction is a huge part of the fun.” When you’re worn out from walking, enjoy a cold beverage in one of the licenced patio areas . Or plan ahead and get yourself a ticket ($50) to the VIP Zone. “Turtlefest is the premier summer event in our downtown core,” says Armstrong. “Whether you’re five years old or ninety five, you’re guar- anteed to have a good time.”

tre booth, where staff from Little Ray’s Reptiles will be displaying an assortment of scaly and slimy creatures. Local entrepreneurs, Zilli Zi Zoo-2-Go , will also be bringing mammals, arthropods and other- wise awesome animals with them. Of course, nothing says summer like a car show and once again Ger- ald Sandham and friends will have their classic cars all shined up and ready for your drooling and photo- graphing pleasure. “All the businesses in the down- town core have been invited to par- ticipate and several non-profit or- ganizations will be participating as well,” says Armstrong. “Each store will be doing something different in


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MAIN STAGE Kick up your heels and prepare to be Lovelocked B L O C K P A R T Y

I t’s hard to say who’s more excited about this year’s Turtlefest Block Party concert. The country music lovers who will pack the streets to hear the likes of Genevieve Fisher and The Lovelocks , or the artists themselves—each of whom will undoubtedly gain hundreds of new fans before the night is over. “Turtlefest is a fantastic opportu- nity for Country 107.3 to give back,” says Carolyn Lamers, General Man-

ager of Tillsonburg Broadcasting Ltd. “Everything that happens on the stage that night is about thank- ing our listeners and thanking our community.” To say Country 107.3 has been on a roll lately is an understatement. Not only has the locally owned and operated radio station won back-to- back “Station of the Year” honours at the Country Music Association of

Ontario (CMAO) Awards, they’ve just picked up their third nomina- tion in as many years. “There aren’t many family-owned stations left in the radio business,” says Lamers. “So we’re a bit of an anomaly among our peers.” Even more unusual is how much of Lamers’ own personal time and money has gone into the Turtlefest concert over the years.


Mixing soaring vocals, sweet harmonies and sultry strings, female roots duo The Lovelocks were the winners of the 2014 Canadian Country Music Association® (CCMA®) Discovery Series. Comprised of Ali Raney and Zoe Neuman , the Lovelocks have an infectiously high energy stage pres- ence and have been named one of the “Top 5 Alt-Country Bands to Watch” by BlogTO. Their sound has been creatively described as “The Dixie Chicks go Lumineering with Mumford & Sons.”


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Join us in the VIP Area! • Prime Stage-View Seats • Complimentary Beverages • All-you-can-eat appetizers • Exclusive door prizes

$50 per person

With four top 50 hit songs, Genevieve Fisher has earned her place in the upper echelon of the Canadian County Music scene. She’s already shared writing credits with names such as Jason Blaine, Steven Lee Olsen, Patricia Conroy, Jasson Massey, Jennifer Schott and many more. If it’s true you can judge a person by the company they keep, Genevieve is poised to leave her mark and is among the best of a new breed of female Country artists.

Passionate about her hometown, Lamers believes the Block Party is the perfect venue for young artists to shine. Interestingly, it was her fa- ther and business parter, John, who- gave Genevieve Fisher her first paid singing gig. “This concert has never been about making money,” says Lamers. “For our family, it’s about the music and memories.” In essence, it’s a party. “You can dance in the street for free or pay a little bit to be pampered over in the VIP Area,” Lamers ex- plains. “Either way, it’s a great night and a wonderful community event.” Tickets to the VIP Area sell for $50, and include the best seats in the house, appetizers and drinks. There will also be special VIP-only con- tests throughout the evening includ- ing a draw for 2100 Air Miles. Co-hosts in the VIP Area include Nu-Décor, Verne’s Carpet One, Chrissy’s Catering, Century 21 Tillsonburg, C.L. Smith Insurance Group and TA Thomson Electrical. Stage partner for the evening is De- Groote-Hill Ltd. “This year’s performers are big and climbing the charts in a hurry,” says Lamers. “Trust me, you’re not going to want to miss this.”

Presented by Nu-Decor

Verne’s Carpet One Chrissy’s Catering Century21 Tillsonburg The Co-operators - C.L. Smith Insurance Group Inc. TA Thomson Electrical Country 107.3

Mark Laforme has performed with Stompin’ Tom, sung in front of Wayne Gretzky and shared the stage with artists such as Colin James and Jeff Healey. In fact, one of Tom’s last requests was for Mark to sing “I Am The Wind” at his funeral and memorial service. Laforme has five albums to his credit and his hit songs span the Country, Classic Rock, R&B, and Rockabilly genres.

Tickets available at 77 Broadway Tillsonburg, ON 519.842.4281 www.Country1073.ca


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ADVENTURES M E M O R I A L P A R K Bounce your brains out with two full days of fun

T hink weekend outings have to be expensive? Think again. This year’s Turtlefest carnival in Memo- rial Park offers unbelievable value. For just $5 per person, per day , you can enjoy non-stop fun and enter- tainment for the whole family. “We’ve worked really hard to bring in activities for all ages this year,” explains venue manager Rick Cox. “We have a huge lineup of tal- ented musicians and stage perform- ers playing all weekend long, plus tons of new interactive and competi- tive activity zones.” As a parent to a pre-teen boy, one of the activities Cox is most excited about is the Nerf Battlezone . “Basically, we’re setting up a mas- sive inflatable obstacle course for two days and allowing kids to bring their Nerf shooters and challenge each other for bragging rights.” The course will also have scheduled pil- low fight times if you’re a more tra- ditional-minded warrior. Back by popular demand , Grand River Inflatables will have a total of 10 activities on site including a 50-ft climbing wall. “The inflatables are always a hit,” says Cox, “There will be huge slides, preschool-sized bouncy castles and even a paddleboat lagoon.” Of

four-wheeled roller skating , you can relive the glory days on the Me- morial Arena floor from noon until 6:00 p.m. For music and dance lovers, the Tillsonburg Hydro Main Stage will power up at 11:00 a.m. Stage man- ager Nicole Nascimato has a lineup that will keep you entertained right through until dusk. United Snakes will pay tribute to ‘70s rock legends while headliner, One Ugly Cowboy , will bring their energetic brand of Canadian country/rock. Other per- formers on the bill include Wendy Lynn Snider and students from three local dance studios. Over on the Family Stage, Images Puppet Productions will be presenting Tommy Turtle’s Crazy Zany Talent Show. You can also check out the Creative Imagina-

course, if it’s cool water you’re look- ing for, be sure to get a front-row seat in the splash zone during the two-day Canine Watersports Cana- da competition . While the weekend in Memorial Park is jam-packed with entertain- ment choices, Cox says some activi- ties will only be offered on one day —so be sure to check the schedule “Saturday kicks off with a grav- ity-defying skateboard, scooter and BMX competition at the Kolin Smith Memorial Skatepark,” says Cox. Meanwhile, on the Optimist courts, area pickleball players will be out in full force with an all-day competition of their own. If you’re old enough to remember on page 14 carefully. Saturday Highlights

One Ugly Cowboy

Tommy Turtle’s Crazy Zany Talent Show


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tions Festival. Running from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., the festival will let kids try their hands at everything from bubble blowing to art proj- ects. New this year is also the Turtle Story Walk (10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) presented by the Annandale Public School Kindergarten Outdoor Class- room. “The Vendor Market will run throughout the weekend as well,” adds Cox, “so there’s something for every member of the family.” Saturday will wrap up with S tar Wars: Episode 1 - The Phantom Menace under the stars , presented by Dave Clergy and the team at Crompton Home Hardware . “It’s going to be a great day and if the weather cooperates, you may even get to see the Re/Max Hot Air Balloon,” says Cox.


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Sunday Highlights Day 2 in Memorial Park will see more action in the Canine Waters- ports Canada Competition, plus the kick off of the ATV Madness chal- lenge and 3-on-3 basketball tourna- ment . “ATV Madness is really a chance for people to put their adult toys to the test,” says organizer Rob Frank- lin. “There are three components — sled pull, mud bog and race. It’ll be dusty, dirty and downright fun for the competitors.” Some of the most popular activi- ties from Saturday will also be back including all the inflatables, the Nerf Battlezone, petting zoo and Vendor Market. “David Wells has put together a fantastic lineup for the Sunday stage,” says Cox. “So bring your comfiest lawn chair and your sun- block because you’re going to want to stay for a while.” Tom Massiah and Patrick Camp- bell will start things off at 11:00

a.m., followed by Judi Rideout and Mark Foley at noon. Then at 12:30, local country boys, Will Carson and the Branchwater Bandits, will take over. David Wells will play his own set at 1:30 and anchoring the lineup at 2:15 will be Long Story , an incredibly talented Tillsonburg duo comprised of James Ternapolski and Faith James .

Enjoy powerful vocals and sweet harmo- nies with Long Story (left). Also on the bill are David Wells and Judi Rideout (top) and Will Carson and the Branchwater Bandits (bottom).

A proud

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Ostrander’s Funeral Home, a family business since 1920, is grateful and proud that their family business remains a vital and trusted part of the community. Ostrander’s offers a forward-looking and creative range of services From the most traditional to the unique and highly personalized requests. A commitment to ensure each family is provided with the exact service they wish Dignified facilities that have been tastefully adapted to offer modern amenities Preplanning, cremation and many other options are available, with a staff that will gladly take the time to help you explore all your choices and reach informed decisions. The comfortable Chapel can accommodate 185 and when demand for space exceeds that, high quality audio and video equipment can carry the service to more than 100 others seated in other areas of the building.

43 Bidwell Street, Tillsonburg, Ontario N4G 3T6 519-842-5221 www.ostrandersfuneralhome.com info@ostrandersfuneralhome.com


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ANNANDALE E V E R Y B O D Y L O V E S Take a turtle tour or compete in turtle croquet

T urtles and skunks andModel T’s, oh my! There’s so much going on at Annandale National Historic Site on Saturday during Turtlefest, you’ll have a hard time deciding what to do first. “We’ll have our turtley lawn games and lots of children’s activi- ties , of course,” explains Heritage and Culture Manager Patty Phelps, “But we’re also adding new ele- ments like slow rides around the block in a Model T .” Whether the T stands for Tillsonburg or Turtlefest, Phelps says it’s an experience the whole family can enjoy together. Also new is a self-guided Historic Turtle Walking Tour which high- lights the town’s early history in-

cluding George Tillson’s homestead and first business. Special guests expected to be on site include author Jan Everett shar- ing Never Give Up , the children’s book she wrote her family’s experi- ences rescuing turtles off the Long Point causeway, Angie Schoen from Turtle Haven Rescue Centre and lo- cal ‘Skunk Lady’ Laurel Beechey . “When you get thirsty, you can head inside and cool off at the Turtle Tea , hosted by the Tillsonburg Re- tirement Centre,” explains Phelps, adding that visitors can also partici- pate in the Turtle Find and Count . “This is always one of our most popular activities,” says Phelps. “It gives visitors a chance to look at ev-

ery nook and cranny in the house for a chance to win fabulous prizes.” On Sunday, Annandale’s magnifi- cently shaded lawn will become a venue for the first-ever team Turtle Croquet Tournament . Some of Pat- ty’s friends have suggested the mu- seum ought to borrow a page from Lewis Carroll and use turtle-shaped mallets during the competition, but so far Phelps is keeping her cards close to her shell. She did confirm that no live animals will be used. “It’s going to be a great day and one I think George Tillson would be very proud of,” says Phelps with a twinkle in her eye.“If you want more detail than that, you’ll have to come on Sunday and see for yourself.”


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Baking up fun at Turtlefest www.stationarts STATION ARTS CENTRE

The Turtley Treats Baking Contest challenges bakers of all ages to come up with their best turtle-inspired recipe Winners get prizes and bragging rights.

The Tillsonburg Farmers’ Market offers an assortment of fresh-from-the- field produce, baked goods, sauces, cut flowers, organic meats and more.

Let your kids find their muse during the Creative Imaginations Festival . Presented by the Station Arts Centre and held at Memorial Park.


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WATERSPORTS C A N I N E Memorial Park goes to the dogs all weekend long

I magine, for a moment, the sight of a happy, high-spirited dog wait- ing with breathless anticipation at the end of a 36-foot dock. Meanwile, the dog’s handler stands dangling an enticing floatable toy over a 45- foot pool. Suddenly the handler hurls the toy skyward and the dog jumps off the edge of the dock, flying over 29 feet through the air in hot pursuit, before his awesome splashdown

into the pool. It’s wet, wild and wonderful fun and thanks to Canine Watersports Canada, it’s returning to be a part of Turtlefest 2016. During this two-day competition, dogs will compete in events such as Toss, Jump, Grab and Lure while spectators cheer them on (and enjoy the occasional spray from the pool). Learn more about the event at www.caninewatersportscanada.ca


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Proud sponsor Tillsonburg Turtlefest

225 Broadway, Tillsonburg, ON


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F R I D A Y, J U N E 1 7

S A T U R D A Y,

4:00 PM

BBQ to support Downtown Beautification Projects Hurley’s Mattress & Appliance Parking Lot

8:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Tillsonburg Farm Station Arts Centre Canine Waterspo Memorial Park Skateboard, Scoo Kolin Smith Memo Pickleball Compe Optimist Tennis Co Grand River Inflat Memorial Park Turtley Treats Ba Station Arts Centre Turtle Story Walk Presented by Annan Kindergarten Outdoo Vendor Market Memorial Park Creative Imaginat Memorial Park Live Animal Displ Annandale NHS Nerf/Pillow Battle Memorial Park Book Signing and Annandale NHS Tommy Turtle’s C Memorial Park Fa Turtle Rides Annandale NHS Tillsonburg Hydro Memorial Park - Danscene (11:00) - TBA (12:00) - United Snakes (2:0 - Brooks Academy (3 - Imagine Dance and - Wendy Lynn Snider - One Ugly Cowboy (

8:00 AM - 6:30 PM

5:00 PM - 5:30 PM

Opening Ceremonies Metro parking lot near the clock tower

9:00 AM - 3:30 PM

5:30 PM - 8:00 PM

Hula Hoop Fun Zone Downtown Broadway Funny Waiter Downtown Broadway FIreGuy Downtown Broadway Puppet Tamer Downtown Broadway The Fat Chef Downtown Broadway Country107.3 Concert DeGroote-Hill Main Stage Funny Waiter Downtown Broadway FireGuy Downtown Broadway Busker Finale Downtown Broadway

5:30 PM

9:00 AM - 8:00 PM

6:00 PM

10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

6:30 PM

10:00 AM - 5:00 PM

6:30 PM

10:00 AM - 8:00 PM

7:00 - 8:00 PM

Wildcats vs Firefighters Basketball Clock Tower Parking Lot

10:00 AM - 2:00 PM

7:00 PM - 11:00 PM

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

7:00 PM

10:00 AM - 8:00 PM

7:30 PM

10:30 AM - 2:00 PM

8:00 PM

11:00 AM - 11:45 AM

11:00 AM - 3:00 PM

12:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Get your 50/50 tickets and help support Turtlefest and Tillsonburg Ringette

$2.00 each or 3 for $5.00

Tommy Turtle’s C

Tickets available at: Turtlefest Headquarters - Co-Operators (C.L. Smith Insurance) Southern Ontario Printing

1:30 PM - 2:15 PM


2:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Tommy Turtle’s C

4:00 PM - 4:45 PM


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A Y, J U N E 1 9

S U N D A Y, J U N E 1 9

ATV Madness - Registration Memorial Park

9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

urg Farmers Market rts Centre Watersports Canada l Park

Turtle Story Walk Presented by Annandale Public School Kindergarten Outdoor Classroom ATV Madness Memorial Park Canine Watersports Canada Competition Memorial Park Grand River Inflatables Memorial Park Nerf/Pillow Battlezone Memorial Park Three-on-Three Basketball

10:00 AM - 3:00 PM

ard, Scooter and BMX ith Memorial Skatepark ll Competition Tennis Courts iver Inflatables l Park reats Baking Contest rts Centre tory Walk by Annandale Public School ten Outdoor Classroom Market l Park Imagination Festival l Park mal Display ale NHS low Battlezone l Park gning and Reading ale NHS Turtle’s Crazy Zany Talent Show l Park Family Stage ides ale NHS urg Hydro Stage l Park ne (11:00) :00) nakes (2:00) Academy (3:15) Dance and Fitness (5:00) ynn Snider (6:00) ly Cowboy (8:00) Turtle’s Crazy Zany Talent Show

10:00 AM - 3:30 PM

Memorial Park Vendor Market Memorial Park Zoo2Go Memorial Park

Tom Massiah & Patrick Campbell Memorial Park - Tillsonburg Hydro Stage Judy Rideout & Mark Foley Memorial Park - Tillsonburg Hydro Stage The Branchwater Bandits Memorial Park - Tillsonburg Hydro Stage David Wells Memorial Park - Tillsonburg Hydro Stage

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TILLSONBURG D I D Y O U K N O W ? Fascinating facts we bet you didn’t know — #didyouknowtbg

The settlement that eventually became Tillsonburg was originally called Dereham Forge.

The first Canadian NBA coach, Jay Triano, was born in Tillsonburg and now coaches for the Phoenix Suns.

E.D. Tillson was among the first to own holstein cows. You’re welcome, City of Woodstock.

The Rotary Clock Tower includes the clock from the former Post Office and the bell from the old Town Hall.

Tillsonburg musician Darrin Schott has opened for the likes of Johnny Cash and Neil Young.

Members of the Ontario Flue Cured Tobacco Board in Tillsonburg were among the first westerners allowed to enter Communist China.

Special thanks to the Tillsonburg Cultural Improvement Alliance for their assistance with these historical facts.


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SUMMER FUN G U I D E The Discover camps and classes to keep your kids busy all summer

W ondering what the kids are going to do all summer? Don’t sweat it. There are plenty of options available—from traditional day camp programs to drop-in activities. The most important consideration when choosing activities for your school-age youngsters is the chil- dren themselves. What are their interests? What are they curious about? Are they likely to do better with a long day full of varied ac- tivities, or shorter, more intense ses- sions that promote focus?

The Town of Tillsonburg’s day camp is always a popular choice for chil- dren ages 4-12. Coinciding with most parents’ working hours, it balances group games, craft times and other leader-led activities with free time spent at the Lake Lisgar Waterpark. Or, for sports minded kids, check out Shooting Stars Rac- quet Sports Camp, where youth try tennis, badminton and squash. Got a young Einstein? Try STEM Camp for super-fun technology, engineer- ing and science activities.


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UPPER DECK D R O P I N A T T H E Tillsonburg’s youth centre continues to reach out

I t’s been 23 years since Rayburn Lansdell first began develop- ing a youth centre in Tillsonburg and as you might expect, much has changed in that time. His hair colour, for instance, is decidedly greyer. His eyesight too, isn’t what it once was. “I have to have my reading glass- es with me in meetings or I’m in trouble,” he laughs. But it’s not just Lansdell who’s changed; society has changed too. Two-parent homes have become the exception, not the norm. Drugs have become more potent and easier than ever to obtain. And then there are the exponential changes in tech- nology. Thanks to a fast and unfet- tered invention called the Internet, kids now have unlimited access to everything the world has to offer— for good and for ill. “Most every young person you meet is carrying a cell phone or an iPod or some other electronic de- vice, ” says Lansdell. “And they take those things with them everywhere. You’ll see a group of kids sitting to- gether and they’ll be texting the per- son sitting right beside them.” Yet as challenging as the new re- ality seems, Lansdell believes there are at least three things that have stayed the same.

“Kids need a place to go, people who care and a purpose to live for,” he says emphatically. “It was true when we started the Upper Deck, and it remains true today.” Giving kids a safe place to go The Upper Deck got its start on the second floor of the Town’s old post office building (hence the name). When that building was torn down to accommodate an expanded Tillsonburg Town Centre, the Deck moved to Harvey Street before even- tually settling into its current home at 19 Queen Street in 1999.

“This space has served us well over the years,” says Lansdell, ges- turing to the main activity room, where various pool, ping pong, foosball and air hockey tables sit ready for the next lunch hour rush or evening program. Around the perimeter of the room sit an assort- ment of well-loved restaurant-style booths and soft sofas. In the corner is a well-stocked snack bar. Head further back and you’ll eventually come to a sports room, where post- ers of Mats Sundin and other long- retired Maple Leafs hang on the walls.


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Did you know the Upper Deck can be rented for birthday parties, family re- unions and other group functions? This rental income helps support the centre’s ongoing programs. Call 519.688.2266 for details.

Shell out for friends. Bring a jar of peanut butter to the Turtlefest Block Party to help support the Helping Hand Food Bank.

“I’m not the only one who’s showing my age,” says Lansdell, a known hockey fan. “The kids proba- bly don’t even know who half these guys are.” But Lansdell is also quick to point out that since the Upper Deck is funded entirely by donations, even covering the cost of the basics can be a challenge. “All the staff—myself included— raise their own salaries,” he says. It’s a funding model that reflects the centre’s affiliation with Southwest- ern Ontario Youth for Christ as well as its connection to a number of area faith groups. In addition to his responsibilities as Satellite Director in Tillsonburg, Lansdell also serves as Director of Development for YFC’s operations across Southwestern Ontario. It’s a role he enjoys, but he confesses he’ll always be partial to Tillsonburg. “The Deck has been around long enough that some of the kids who grew up coming here are now hav- ing children of their own,” he says. “I’ve run into quite a few of them lately and it’s neat to hear about the impact the staff and this facility had on them.” Programs offered at the Upper Deck include casual drop in times as well as weekly activity groups.

Supper Club, for instance, gives youth a chance to prepare a nutri- tious meal and then eat it together. “It’s amazing how many kids don’t ever get to sit down and eat with their families,” Lansdell says. “Life gets busy and the adults in the home are working or struggling financially to put food on the table and that most basic of human expe- riences gets sacrificed.” On Friday nights, the Upper Deck opens up for junior high-aged kids (ages 12-14), followed by older, high school-aged youth (ages 15-18). Staff also organize excursions throughout the year—camping trips, beach days and other social events. “We have a great group of sup- porters and a local steering commit- tee who help us keep the lights on and the doors open,” says Lansdell, “but we’re also aware that we need to broaden that network if we’re go- ing to be able to make some of the necessary facility upgrades.” The annual golf tournament is coming up on June 25th at The Bridges and as always, donations are welcome.

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SUMMER S E I Z E Y O U R Don’t just sit there, get outside already!

T he warm weather won’t last forever so don’t go holing up in your air conditioned cocoon this summer, slap on some sunscreen and go outside. You’ll be amazed at all things you can do. Learn to row Sure, Lake Lisgar is pretty to look at, but why be a land-lover when you could learn to row with the Till- sonburg Rowing Club? Learn more at www.tillsonburgrowingclub.com

Go for a hike The Carroll Trail offers spec- tacular views thanks to its rolling topography. But if you’re looking for something a little easier on the body, the former rail trails in the area are a great option too. Swim and splash On a hot sunny day, there’s noth- ing like cooling off at Lake Lisgar Waterpark . Easy on the wallet, the park even has a giant twister water- slide. A gradual beach entry makes it easy for seniors and toddlers to cool off, while the huge lawn and deck area provides plenty of room to relax. www.lakelisgarwaterpark.ca

Go for a spin The rural roads surrounding Tillsonburg are cyclist’s dream. Whether you’re an occasional rider or a serious road racer, there’s tons of territory out there just waiting to be explored. Check out group riding opportunities at www.silverscc.net Enjoy stargazing Located in one of the darkest points in Southern Ontario, the Long Point Observatory puts you closer to the stars. Or glide through the Carolinian forest on a world class 2½ hour zip line and canopy tour. Learn more at www.lpfun.ca .

Rent a kayak For years, Jones Marine has been helping boat owners get out and enjoy the open water, but did you know they also rent recreational, touring and fishing kayaks? New- bies will love their Kayaking Foun- dations class taught by a certified Paddle Canada instructor. Learn more at www.otterpaddle.com .


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Swing and sway The Sunday night “ Music on the Lawn ” concert series at Annandale National Historic Site is the perfect way to spend a summer evening. Admission is by donation and all proceeds benefit the Tillsonburg and District Historical Society . Stop and smell the roses Each year Tillsonburg residents grow some scent-sational gardens. You can join them by becoming a member of the Tillsonburg Horti- cultural Society . Who knows? Your thumb might just turn green. Stick it to ‘em Enjoy finger-lickin’ fun when Ribfest returns to the Tillsonburg Fairgrounds (July 15-17). Presented by the Tillsonburg Thunder hockey team, this event will satisfy your tastebuds while letting you indulge your inner Fred Flinstone. Plus, enjoy live stage entertainment while you eat! www.tillsonburgribfest.ca



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HARVARD B A C K S E A T I N A Adventure is as close as your own backyard

A t 90 years of age, there isn’t much Verne Reynolds hasn’t done in life. But this past Victoria Day weekend, the long-time Tillson- burg resident added a new experi- ence to his expansive collection. Cheered on by his wife of 65 years, Jean, and a group of nearly 20 well- wishers at Tillsonburg Regional Air- port, Reynolds buckled the straps on his parachute and climbed into the back seat of a Harvard. The in- tended flight path? A half hour sce- nic trip through Tillsonburg, down to Port Burwell and back again. “I’ve always wanted to go up in one of these,” Reynolds said excited- ly prior to the flight. “My son gave me a gift certificate for my birthday in March and I’ve been looking for- ward to this moment ever since.” With less than 50 airworthy Har-

vards left in Canada, the opportu- nity to fly in one of the iconic yellow warbirds is a rare treat indeed— whether as a pilot or a passenger. Notoriously hard to control, the Harvard was the most successful advanced training aircraft of the World War II era. Thousands of Brit- ish Commonwealth pilots cut their teeth on one before moving on to more nimble fighters like the Hur- ricane, Spitfire and Mustang. While many of the old planes have been lost or fallen into disre- pair over the years, the Tillsonburg Airport-based Canadian Harvard Aircraft Association (CHAA) is on a quest to “keep ‘em flying.” “CHAA exists to preserve, re- store, maintain, display and demon- strate the Harvard and other aircraft associated with the Royal Canadian

Air Force,” says CHAA president Pat Hanna. “And thanks to the re- markable passion and dedication of our volunteers, we’ve been pretty successful at doing that.” From humble beginnings back in 1985, CHAA has become one of the fastest-growing air associations in Canada. The Association now boasts 700+ members, owns two hangars at Tillsonburg Regional Airport and has successfully restored six Har- vards to flying condition. Other aircraft in the Association’s fleet include a Yale, a Tiger Moth and two additional Harvards still undergoing restoration work. “They used to say, ‘If you can learn to fly a Harvard, you can learn to fly anything,’ and it’s absolutely true,” says CHAA Chief Operations Officer and Reynolds’ pilot for the


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trip, Bjarni Tryggvason. A former astronaut, Tryggvason served as a payload specialist on the space shuttle Discovery in 1997 and now heads up CHAA’s air displays. “The flight experience program- brings history to life,” adds CHAA Vice-President Bill Shepard. “There’s something incredible about helping people climb in the cockpit and go back in time. To be able to facilitate that kind of experience and be there when it happens is pretty special.” And while the view from a Har- vard is undoubtedly spectacular, the most memorable part about flying in one is the thunderous sound pro- duced by its 600 horsepower Pratt & Whitney R-1340 radial engine. “That telltale roar is created when

lowing leaves in the fields. The Canadian Harvard Aerobatic Team (CHAT) regularly performs at airshows, but for local aviation buffs, even their informal practice sessions can be spectacular. “When you see four pilots master- fully taking their three-ton aircraft and performing tight aerobatic ma- noeuvers together in a bright blue summer sky, there’s nothing like it,” says Hanna. “It literally takes your breath away.” An all-volunteer organization, CHAA relies on membership dues, donations and money raised from backseat rides to help keep their op- erations going. With a 20-minute ride requiring the purchase of a $50 Association

It’s never

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Discover the freedom of flying www.tillsonburgflyingschool.ca 519.688.3968

OPEN DAILY 8:00am - 2:00pm All day breakfast Full catering menu Gift certificates available

Verne Reynolds gets ready for the ride of his life with experienced Harvard pilot and ex-astronaut, Bjarni Tryggvason (bottom left).

membership and then a $250 dona- tion, the experience doesn’t come cheap. But if the smile on Verne Reynolds’ face is any indication, it’s definitely money well spent. “I loved every minute of it,” Reyn- olds says, taming his windblown hair with his hand. To learn more about how you can get involved with CHAA, visit www.harvards.com.

the tips of the 9-foot propeller ex- ceed the speed of sound,” Tryg- gvason explains. “Put a few planes together in formation and you can definitely hear them coming.” Throughout the summer and fall months, the roar of the Harvards is nearly ubiquitous across Oxford County. CHAA pilots fly most every weekend and as a result, the sight of yellow planes overhead has become nearly as common in the area as yel-


244411 Airport Rd., Tillsonburg 519.842.4444 Regional Airport


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SUCCESS B R A N D I N G Tillsonburg refreshes its story and look

The term ‘brand’ has become a buzzword these days among savvy hipsters and seasoned executives alike. But just what is a brand and why does it matter to a municipality like Tillsonburg? For starters, a brand isn’t a logo. “A logo might be the picture you associate with a brand, but it’s not the brand itself,” says Colleen Pep- per, Marketing and Communica- tions Officer for the Town of Till- sonburg. “The heart of a brand is a story and the lived experiences that follow it.” “No one is under any illusions that a great logo is a magic bullet that will bring business to this town,” adds Tillsonburg’s Development Commissioner Cephas Panschow. “But in an increasingly competitive world, everything counts. If you’re trying to position your municipality as being progressive, but everything you’re doing and showing to people says otherwise, you’re in trouble. There’s a disconnect there and it has to be addressed.” Addressing the disconnect was precisely what Pepper, Panschow and eight other members of the Town’s brand task force set out to do earlier this year. Over the course of six months, the community-led

team used surveys, focus groups and other public engagement tools to refine the Tillsonburg story for the 21st century. “It had been about 20 years since the Town had reviewed its brand,” explains Panschow. “While the pro- cess ended up being more involved than we had anticipated, I think ev- eryone is really pleased with what we accomplished.” In the end, the Task Force was able to boil down the essence of Tillson- burg to three words: connected, en- riched and inspired. Helping the group navigate the rebranding process was Chris Kelly, principal of ifourone Design.

“As a local boy, this was a really special project,” says Kelly. “Every- one at the table was so passionate. We wanted to make sure that what- ever we came up with rang true.” In March, Council adopted the Task Force’s logo and brand recom- mendation and Town staff are now focused on rolling it out consistently across the corporation. “The goal of a new brand is to en- able the Tillsonburg community to be more successful in attracting and retaining investment,” says Mayor Stephen Molnar. “Now that the tra- jectory has been set, I think we’re going to see the momentum build and great things happen.”

The new logo, designed by Chris Kelly of ifourone Design, is personable, welcoming and fun while still being professional. The custom typeface suggests an autograph.


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Connected In Tillsonburg, you can be known by name and valued by the community around you. In Tillsonburg, everyday encounters often lead to extraordinary opportunities and new markets are within easy reach— by road, rail or runway. Enriched In Tillsonburg, you can enjoy the fruits of your labour. Our agricultural heritage means hard work is valued, but so too is rest and relaxation. In Tillsonburg, neighbours are friends, and children can play safely in yards and parks. As a regional hub, Tillsonburg offers high-quality recreational amenities, cultural programs and health/wellness services. In Tillsonburg, you can enjoy a rich, meaningful life at any age. Inspired In Tillsonburg, creative minds converge. In Tillsonburg, residents are known for their ingenuity, passion and persistence. In Tillsonburg, you can make a difference. You can meet community needs as a business person or leave a legacy as a volunteer. You can champion a cause, or anchor a team. Tillsonburg is where you can create your own future.

The liriodendron, or tulip tree, leaf in the new logo represents the town’s relationship to the land, green spaces and trails. The stand-alone icon shown here will be used to identify the Town’s various social media pages such as Facebook and Twitter.

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Modelling the Town’s new merchandise are Cassandra Drescher, Danielle Drescher, Brittany Bell and Janelle Klosler. You can buy your own hoodie at the Community Centre for $50 (+ HST)


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NUMBERS B Y T H E Digits that will make you do a double-take

24+ flavours of ice cream are available at Dad’s Ice Cream , on Vance Drive.

700 gallons of paint have been recycled thanks to the paint collection program at Nu-Decor . There’s no charge to use the service and best of all, you’ll save $5.00 off your next paint purchase. To learn more, visit www.nu-decor.ca.


barrels of oatmeal were produced every day at E.D. Tillson’s oat mill in 1887. That’s a lot of bowls of porridge even for Goldilocks!.

1855 is the year Tillsonburg’s oldest church, Avondale United , was constructed and has been in continuous use ever since.

500 continuning education classes are offered online through the Tillsonburg Branch of the Oxford County Library —including Bartending and Mixology 101. Cheers!

30,000 swimmers visit Lake Lisgar Waterpark each summer--or roughly 500 to 800 people a day.

In 1954, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation granted an application for a 250-watt radio station for Tillsonburg. CKOT (now Easy101 ) officially took to the air in April 1955 and today, broadcasts at a powerful 50,000 watts .


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S u p p o r t i n g a r t i s t s a n d a r t i s a n s f o r o v e r 3 0 y e a r s


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