Real Living Winter issue 2020

REAL LIVING Rural Elgin Agricultural

Winter 2020 Issue 4

Photo by Geoff Rae

Yes, you want pie with that By Staci Rae Whether you are looking for a great cup of coffee to go with a hearty homemade breakfast, a delicious homemade burger or the kind of dessert you’ll be recommending to your friends for years to come, Tall Tales Café in Wallacetown is the place for you. Step inside the door at Tall Tales Café and you’ll immediately be struck by one thing: How welcome you feel. The vibe here is truly that of a community gatheringplacewhere, when the door opens, diners look up to greet the newcomer with a wave. Wallacetown is the kind of place where everyone knows everyone, and at Tall Tales Café every customer is treated like family. The menu here is varied, with something for everyone. They serve breakfast until 4pm “in case you can’t get up early enough,” which consists of many of the usual suspects like pancakes with home-made fruit sauce and whipped cream, omelettes, French toast, a breakfast burrito and a build-your- own option that allows you to customize your breakfast from a list of a la carte options. One notable standout among this all-start lineup is something I’ve never seen before: breakfast poutine. You know I had to order that! This offering is much like the standard poutine affair, except instead of fries the gravy and cheese sit atop chunky, delicious home fries! It’s definitely something I will order again. The peameal bacon sandwich was also delicious, that perfect not-quite-breakfast- but-not-quite-lunch option. The pancakes were plentiful and tasty, too, topped with generous amounts of house-made strawberry sauce and whipped cream.

Holly and John Mairleitner (who took over the business in 2002 when John’s mother retired) enthusiastically answered, “Our pies!” These mile-high creations use local fruits, sourced from local farms and from the family’s very own gardens. Whether you choose Mile-High Apple Pie, Coconut Cream Pie, Maple

If breakfast isn’t your thing, Tall Tales Café offers an abundance of other options for later in the day as well, including burgers made from local Celtic Ridge Farms beef, Salisbury steak, chili, a farmer’s hot dog, and more. Whatever you’re craving, you’ll find it here, done exceptionally well. Oh, and let’s not forget dessert. When asked what they were famous for, owners

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well. Holly herself has been working there on and off since she was just 13 years old! John and Holly truly care about their customers, and it shows. They are always ready with a smile and friendly word, but their dedication to their community goes deeper than that. They use as much locally grown and produced product as possible, including beef, many of their vegetables, honey, fruits and berries, to name a few. And the recipes they use all come from John’s mom! If you’re looking for a delicious, homemade meal in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, give Tall Tales Café a try. And if they ask you if you’d like to try a slice of their pie, the answer must always be a resounding yes. Disregard this tip, and regret will soon follow. Mark my words.

Tale Tales Cafe is located at 29634 Talbot Line, Wallacetown

Pecan or any one of their other delicious creations, you’re sure to be in for a treat. Be warned: Youmay want to loosen your belt a notch or two before digging in! Tall Tales Café is a family business in every sense of the word. Not only has the business been passed down from John’s mother to John and Holly, but several family members work in the restaurant as

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Real Living • Winter 2020

Celebrate winter in Southwold! By Staci Rae Many of us malign the onslaught of winter, with its chilly days and long nights, but Southwold wants to celebrate all the great things that winter has to offer! On February 8th, everyone is invited to the Keystone Community Complex grounds to celebrate the 4th Annual Southwold Winterfest. What started four years ago as a way to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary has now become an annual tradition for the community. This year’s event has something for the entire family! Beginning with the opening ceremonies at 1:30, this

fun-filled day will include things like: • outdoor games (like giant Jenga!) • a bird show • cookies and hot dogs • a bonfire • wagon rides • colouring, crafts, and so much more.

Be sure you and your family stay until 7 pm so you don’t miss the incredible fireworks display! “They have been described as being as good or better than the Canada Day fireworks!” says Abi. After a fun day for the family, the event gets a little more grown up with a licensed barn dance, running from 8pm until 1am. So, put on your dancin’ shoes and get ready to cut a rug! This year’s Winterfest promises to be a fun time for the entire community. “It’s been bigger or better every year,” says Abi. “We estimate that we have about 200 people come out, which has been growing year over year. Last year was our biggest year and we are hoping to have even more this year!” If you’re looking for a way to see the bright side of winter, bundle up the family and head to the Keystone Complex for the 4th Annual Southwold Winterfest and make some winter memories to last a lifetime.

THE TURKEY SHOPPE Ambrose Plumbing will be sponsoring an outdoor game called Plunger Plop, Dotsy’s will be on hand for face painting, and a snow golf game will be brought to the event courtesy of The Bluffs golf course as well. Weather permitting, there will be an outdoor skating rink, a photo booth by One Eye Entertainment, an outdoor kids’ play area by Timbernook Elgin and for those who want to stay warm and cozy, there will also be a story time and movie in the library. “It’s an entirely free day for the whole family!” says Abi North, chair of the Winterfest committee. From 4:30 to 7 pm there will be a Crockpot Cook-Off, where entrants will compete for votes on their crockpot creations.

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Real Living • Winter 2020

It all started in the basement By Staci Rae Sometimes the best ideas start small. That’s exactly what happened for Peter McDermid and his wife, Stephanie. After working in the not-for-profit sector in Elgin County for many years, Peter was ready for a change. Working together with his wife, the couple founded Bear Friend Factory in their basement with little more than one stuffing machine, an idea for a business, and a strong desire to help bring smiles to people’s faces.

Fast-forward to 2020. Today, that idea has blossomed into a fully-fledged business in the heart of Sparta, Whistle Stop Peddlers and Bear Friend Factory. Peter and Stephanie just knew Sparta was the right location for their business the moment they saw it while on a trip visiting a friend. “When we first came down here, there was a little shop for rent and we thought it would be the ideal spot for the teddy bear

shop. We were running out of space in the basement!” Peter says. The building dates back to the 1800s and is the perfect place to house the business, as it has allowed for a couple of expansions over the years as the business continues to grow. The idea behind the store is to help showcase not only the Bear Friend Factory side of the business but also to give

Whistle Stop Peddlers and Bear Friend Factory is located at 46349 Sparta Line, Sparta

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local businesses and craftspeople the perfect place to showcase and sell their handmade items under one roof. Currently, more than 35 different local businesses and artisans have partnered with Peter and Stephanie to sell their products through the store, and that number is growing all the time. “The store is a lot more than just teddy bears. There’s something for everyone – it’s eclectic,” says Peter.

Here, you’ll find Meraki alcohol ink creations, a variety of bath bombs and personal care products, CBD products, jewellery, artwork, home décor pieces, and more. Baked Candle Co.’s dessert-themed products are on offer here too, and the store is also home to Canada Proud products, which are made from Canadian flags. More than just a store, however, a large part of

what makes this business special is their commitment to giving back to the community that has supported them over the years. Each year, they hold many fundraising programs such as bus trips to raise money for an initiative they call the ER Buddies Program. Monies raised for the program make it possible for Peter and Stephanie to donate hundreds of stuffed bear friends to young patients at the St. Thomas-Elgin General Hospital. Whistle Stop Peddlers and Bear Friend Factory is open six days per week, Tuesday to Sunday.

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Real Living • Winter 2020

A celebration of our agricultural history By Staci Rae

of another building, accessible to everyone. The new barn will be entirely accessible, so everyone can enjoy the display. In addition, because of the added space the new building will provide, the Society will be able to display more of their collection all in one place. (Currently, many pieces are stored offsite, due to lack of space at the museum). When the project is completed, the current barn will be converted to the welcome centre, where guests will be able to stop to ask questions, get directions, pay admission fees, etc.

Elgin County boasts a rich history and the Backus-Page House Museum is dedicated to preserving and keeping alive our history in a variety of ways. A new project taken on by the Tyrconnell Heritage Society, which operates the museum, is aimed at specifically highlighting the agricultural history of the area. The Society is in the process of constructing what will eventually be known as the Agricultural Centre. The idea was born more than two years ago when George Kimble, a long- time supporter of the museum’s farm show passed away. George left a bequest to the Society with a wish that it be used to construct a building that would demonstrate farm equipment. They also received another bequest from Theresa Cutler, and together the gifts afforded the Society the funds needed to move forward with the project. The vision for the Agricultural Centre is to create a 3,000 square foot, 50x60 foot pole barn with a modern cement floor. Although the building will, of course, be new construction, the outward appearance of the structure will be aged to be seamlessly fit in with the period buildings on site. The exterior will feature barn board designed to match other buildings such as the carriage house. Inside, the goal is to feature a timeline of agricultural history through farming equipment and other implements that tell the story of our region’s agricultural evolution. Beginning with First Nations agricultural traditions, the display will move around the room moving ever closer to the present so that, as much as possible, a continuous through-line will be created, displaying the evolution of agriculture in the region. In addition to the display, the space will be designed to be used as an event space for things such as weddings, dinners, etc. To facilitate that, the intention is to mount the equipment on movable, wheeled platforms so that they can easily be moved in and out of the space as needed without compromising the safety of the pieces. Over the summer of 2020, the team at the Museum will be installing the exhibits. Donations of farm equipment will be welcome once the construction of the building is complete (currently, there is no where to store new pieces). One of the exciting things about the project is that it makes the collection, which is now displayed on the second floor

Backus-Page House Museum is located at 29424 Lakeview Line inWallacetown

But perhaps the best part of the new Agricultural Centre project is that it will bring in something new for visitors to the museum, so even if you’ve been to the Backus-Page House Museum before, this will be a new and exciting reason to come back time and again! If you have carpentry, farming history, or exhibit design experience and would like to assist with the project, the Backus- Page House Museum could use your help! Contact them at (519) 762-3072 or by email at:

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REAL RECIPES Courtesy of Annie Oegema, Oegema Turkey Shoppe Turkey Nuggets

Why buy storebought, frozen nuggets when making your own is so easy, so much healthier, and not to mention, so delicious? These nuggets are sure to be a crowd pleaser! They received enthusiastic thumbs up from all three of us in our family, including a decree of “These are DELICIOUS!!” from our 12-year-old food critic. We served them alongside sweet potato fries.

Ingredients: 1lb turkey fillets or boneless turkey breast ½ cup fine breadcrumbs ¼ cup Parmesan cheese ¼ cup finely grated cheddar cheese 1 tsp thyme

1 tsp basil ½ tsp salt ¼ tsp pepper ¼ cup butter or margarine. Directions: • Cut turkey into 1- 1 ½ inch cubes. • In a bowl, combine bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese and spices. • Melt butter or margarine. • Dip turkey pieces into butter or margarine, then roll in dry crumb mixture to coat completely. • Arrange on a foil-lined baking sheet and bake at 400F for 10-12 minutes.

• Check to see if turkey is no longer pink in the middle. Serve hot or cold. Makes approximately 30 nuggets.

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Real Living • Winter 2020

Meet your MP! By Staci Rae Meet your MP! By Staci Rae

Recently, Karen Vecchio was re-elected as the Member of Parliament for Elgin Middlesex London. Karen is an active member of our community, both within and outside of the duties of her office, and we wanted to find out more about who she is, both as a parliamentarian and as a person. When we asked Karen why she decided to run for office in the first place, she was quick to say that it was because of the support and encouragement she received to do so. Having worked alongside Joe Preston as his Constituency Assistant, she felt very plugged in to the community, and both Joe and others suggested that maybe running for office was a good next step for her. “It felt like the right fit for me,” Karen explains. This time around, her answer was straightforward as well: “My job wasn’t done. I still have a lot to share.” When it comes to priorities for her time in office, Karen has looked to the community for its input. “One thing I really heard from a lot of people is [the problem of] seniors falling behind,” she explains. “The areas of affordability, housing, and jobs will be priorities, too” she says. “It’s about giving everybody a hand up. How do we all work together build a better community?” All successes start from a point of inspiration, and Karen is quick to point out some of the people who have inspired her along the way. “Joe Preston will always be one of my number-

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one influences. I look at him as being really inspirational,” she says. Karen also includes her family and her husband in her list of personal inspirations, but she also says that the community is a big source of inspiration for her, too: “Everybody I meet inspires me,” she explains. One of the things we just had to know was what Karen did immediately following her election victory this time. Her answer, not surprising to anyone who has met Karen, was very grounded: “I got up and I took my son to school, then saw my mom and dad, trying to ground myself. Lots of interviews, and then I ate with my family.”

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Speaking of staying grounded, one of Karen’s happy places is in the kitchen. With the holiday season upon us, Karen is looking forward to getting into her kitchen and getting some baking done, an activity that helps her decompress from her busy job in the public. Rumour has it she bakes a mean sugar cookie and whipped shortbread, and in my book, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Karen was born and raised in Sparta and we asked her what she would do in Elgin County if she had a whole day to herself (a very rare treat, I’m sure). She said she would first head to Port Bruce Beach for some relaxation. Then, when hunger struck, she’d head to Mackie’s for their famous fries, and then to the trout hatchery in Port Stanley. “I love being outdoors,” she says. So, there you have it: A little peak into the work and play lives of Karen Vecchio, MP! Next time you see her in the community, be sure to stop for a chat. She’s always happy to meet the people in our neighbourhood!

Karen Vecchio’s constituency office is in the CASO Station 750 Talbot St #203, St Thomas

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Real Living • Winter 2020 • Page 11

Raising amazing chicks! By Staci Rae

The first seven days of a baby chick’s life are critical to their successful growth to maturity. Elgin Feeds wants you to be successful in your chick-raising journey and they have brought in an expert to help. Dr. Scott Gillingham has spoken to audiences around the globe about the importance of those first seven days in a chick’s development, a topic he discusses at length in his book, Raising Amazing Chicks: The First Seven Days . Dr. Gillingham will be on hand at Elgin Feeds on Wednesday, March 4th, during their “Chick Days” event this year, which have proved annually to be some of the busiest days of the year at the store. Participants in the event will have the opportunity not only to listen to Dr. Gillingham’s presentation on raising chicks in those first critical days but will also be able to ask their own specific questions. In addition, each attendee will receive a copy of Raising Amazing Chicks: The First Seven Days (which is included in the cost of the event). The event will run from 6:30 to 8 pm and pre-registration is required. “More and more people are raising their own chicks these days,” says Elgin Feed’s manager Theresa Pressey. “When you raise your own chicks, you know for sure what they are eating and how they are treated,” she explains. Whether you’ve raised flocks of chickens before or whether you are just embarking on the adventure for the first time, you’re sure to benefit from this informative event. To register call 226-289-2403 to RSVP. Cost is $15.00 per person and includes a copy of Raising Amazing Chicks: The First Seven Days

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The importance of sitting By Sarah Harrison, Mazak Farms Before moving home to take over the farm, I worked in healthcare. In my field, there was an element of my role which was unflatteringly called “non-productive time”. This

‘non-productive time’ was to be spent completing paperwork, planning, and attending meetings and workshops. It was time that was not spent providing direct patient care, which of course is the primary goal of healthcare. I have learned that the concept of non-productive time is a very important part of agriculture as well. Without this time designated to reflect and plan, we cannot effectively achieve the primary goal of agriculture, production. Although it is often very hard to find a way to set aside this time, it is a necessity. It is during this time that we are doing very valuable, yet perhaps invisible, work. Planning, goal setting, educating, and motivating are all vital elements to the success of a farm. I’m sure that in these winter months many of your kitchen tables look the same as ours: seed catalogues, spreadsheets, research articles and “The Farmer” are all elements of our non-productive time. Lately, we have also been adding podcasts to our planning process. The information that is now easily accessible to those who work in agriculture is astounding, and the increasing number of Farmers willing to share their practices, both the successes and failures, is also easier and easier to access.   Often the less-spoken-about element of this planning time is the guilt. The “I should be in the barn” train of thought that often limits us from allowing ourselves the proper time to not only be FarmHers and Farmers, but also the business people that agriculture now requires us all to be. It is important that you don’t undervalue the work you do sitting at the kitchen table, that work is equally as valuable as the field work you do. Some businesspeople may say it can be even more valuable. If you do not have a plan and are not confident in your numbers, how do you know the work you are doing in the field is the work you need to be doing?  Let go of the guilt, pour yourself a cuppa, pull up a seat at the kitchen table, and get to work.

REAL Living Cover Photo of Pinecroft 8122 Rogers Rd, Aylmer, ON Photo by Geoff Rae For more information on REAL Living , to place an ad, or to share a story, email geoff@ villagerpublications. com or call 519-495-7177.

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Real Living • Winter 2020

Feral Pigs Spotted in Elgin? By Heather Derks Happy 2020, everyone, and a safe and prosperous new year. I’ll begin with an incident that happened over the Christmas holidays. I was driving with my 11-year-old son in the car, somewhere near the Sparta Drag Strip, and I noticed three large creatures in a cornfield we were passing. They didn’t look like deer to me, and they definitely weren’t wild turkeys. Because I was driving, and didn’t want to take my eyes off the road, I asked my son what he thought they were. “I don’t know, some kind of black four-legged animal I guess,” he said. With the rush of the season, I kind of forgot all about that incident, until different people I ran into kept telling me there are wild pigs here in Elgin. The incidence of wild pig sightings in Ontario is something that the government is monitoring. According to wildpigs, at the time of this writing, 66 incidents of sightings have been reported, ranging from Chatham-Kent to Ottawa, but none of these are in Elgin. Because of the huge potential risk they pose to agriculture, feral pigs are on the OFA’s radar, too. “There is a serious issue with pigs free in the environment,” says Larry Davis, OFA Regional Director for Brant-Haldimand- Norfolk. “They destroy crops in more than one way, and a sounder of pigs can destroy several hectares at a time.” There is also the risk that wild pigs can spread viruses to domestic pigs or other wild animals. Worse, with every wild sow having the potential for two litters of up to 12 piglets per year, they are prolific breeders who can demolish native plants and wildlife and act in an aggressive manner around pets or even humans.

MPP Jeff Yurek had this to say on the topic: “I would encourage area farmers to be very diligent about biosecurity practices -- If wild pigs are in the area, the ground may be contaminated with feces which could easily be inadvertently transferred into a commercial swine barn on clothing or footwear.” He added that “People going onto farms should contact farmers for permission first and should respect biosecurity and disease prevention protocols.”

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Plus, they’re smart and capable of limiting their activity to times where human activity is less present. With sightings in both Brant and Norfolk counties, it’s very possible that they have migrated into Elgin, and with our strong agricultural economy that’s something that we definitely want to keep on top of. If you see a feral pig, please try to get a video or picture provided you are safe to do so and remember to report the sighting to so that the authorities can make a plan for how to manage them. Please copy me as well or send me a note to let me know at

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HIGHLAND PHARMACY With Jim’s retirement first from funeral service and then from the ambulance world, I found myself excited that there would be more visits and more time to learn. But fate had other plans in store and at the age of 70, Jim died suddenly. I was angry and I was sad. I felt that Jim and the people who loved him had been robbed. Is time really on our side? By Bill Denning I lost a dear friend recently. Jim Price was a self-made man raised in the little hamlet of Clachan, where Kent and Elgin counties meet. Jim followed in the footsteps of his father- in-law, Em Padfield, and became a funeral director and an ambulance service professional in the community of Rodney. He was a caring and exemplary communicator, qualities that lent themself well to his chosen professions. Jim spent most of his career advocating for both professions, ensuring that small-town funeral directors and ambulance operators had a voice with the provincial government while still finding time to serve his fellow townspeople at the most difficult of times. When I was 21, I met Jim Price. He hired me to help run his funeral home so that he could help navigate the changes in ambulance service following a provincial download to the counties and municipalities. Although he was a busy man, he always made time for me. Rarely did a day go by where we didn’t chat. Jim was always willing to share some gentle guidance, a story, or an applicable one-liner affectionately known in these parts as a “Jimism”. Jim gave those who knew him the greatest gift: time.

L-R Bill Dennings and Jim Price

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Real Living • Winter 2020 • Page 15

Geoffrey Rae Manager/Sales 519-495-7177 • Staci Rae Editor – Publisher – Barb Botten Graphic Artist – Cathy Wood Photos, community events and article suggestions welcome. We look forward to hearing from you. REAL LIVING Rural Elgin Agricultural – My equipment is insured on an actual cash value basis. It’s important to watch my values on the policy for all my equipment to make sure that I would get what it’s worth if there were a loss. Several factors come into play regarding the values ie: higher US dollar, rarity, age, and brand. In general, I need to know what that piece, in that shape, would be worth at the local farm dealerships. – If I don’t see something on my policy, chances are it is NOT covered. Does your agribusiness policy have you covered? By Tim Wade, Westminster Mutual Insurance Company The language of the insurance industry can be complicated and challenging to understand for the average policyholder. When I was thinking about writing this article, I thought about what I would want to know if I were an agribusiness policyholder, so I’ve compiled a list of just that. I’d want to know that: – My Agent or Broker has experience writing and reviewing agribusiness policies so I am properly insured. – My buildings are insured properly. Some barns are insured for rebuild/replacement and some are insured on an actual cash value basis/ACV (taking into account depreciation). If my buildings are only insured for ACV, can I have “snow load” coverage on them? Snow load is not usually covered under ACV.

SilvaTerra’s Tree Workshop Series Register for our February Workshop Seminar: All Things Black Walnut – An Introduction Presented by Steve Timmermans, SilvaTerra Farms & EverWoods EverWoods Showroom & Store 417 Wellington Street St. Thomas, Ontario Wednesday, February 19th, 2020 • 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. $25 per person (includes beverages and snacks) Registration: In-person at EverWoods showroom & store (above address), or email, or call 519-207-3837. We accept e-transfer, credit/debit, or cash

(519) 207-3837 • landowners, homeowners, tree enthusiasts, wood enthusiasts, to share our knowledge and experiences about all aspects of Black Walnut trees in southwestern Ontario! Enjoy an evening outing to hear about upcoming Black Walnut field courses & tours: • tree pruning • stand management • nut collection, processing, uses • tree planting • harvesting • sawmilling • drying • furniture design and creation ….and more We look forward to meeting farmers,

Page 16 Real Living • Winter 2020 To advertise here, please contact

– If I am “storing” cars, trailers, or boats for others and I had a fire in the building they were stored in, I could actually be responsible financially for those items. Without my insurer knowing I do this and having the proper policy wordings in place, there would be no coverage in the event of a loss. – I should have a disability policy to cover me if I am injured, either short term or long term. Lots of companies offer temporary replacement labour and a small amount of life insurance but it’s important to know, for instance: if you were injured in a tractor rollover, there would be coverage for the tractor but not to the person injured. – Although my produce, livestock, equipment may all be covered, if I run a dairy, poultry or swine operation and I have a loss due to an insured peril (fire) and I was not able to generate an income for 6, 12, 18 or 24 months due to the fire, it’s critical to have “Loss of Income” for my operation. This is the least purchased coverage throughout the country and potentially the coverage that could keep you from losing your operation. – I have sufficient liability coverage. Liability is your defence costs from your company in the event you are sued. There are several reasons why someone would be on your property. They could just simply be trespassing while on an ATV or snowmobile. If that vehicle hit a hole and flips, you are at risk. If you were sued for $2 million and you only had $1 million liability, you would get a letter from your insurer stating they are on your defence up to the first million but you are required to retain Defense Counsel for the excess. This could cost you substantial out of pocket dollars. Liability coverage is relatively inexpensive. Make sure you have enough. $2 million should be the minimum coverage for any Agribusiness operation. – The difference between a detached private structure and a farm building. Any building previously used for farm or commercial purposes does not qualify as a detached private structure included with your house and would have to be insured separately. Lastly, I’d want to meet with my Insurance Agent/Broker annually to review my policy.

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• Page 17

Real Living • Winter 2020

Looking for a New Shed this Spring?

Simply Pure Water The LOCAL Water Experts

Makes a great gift!

Chris Patriquin Repairs and Service to most makes and models Softeners, Iron Removers, Sterilization P: 519-637-3306

Let us make the CustomMade, Locally Built Shed Your Back Yard Deserves! Hand Crafted – Custom Built Mini Barns • Work Sheds • Play Houses Pool Change Rooms

Since 1974 10055 Carter Rd.

Electrical & Plumbing Supplies Fasteners • Signage Lifting & Rigging Equipment For all your home and job site needs

Aylmer: 519-773-3838 West Lorne: 1-888-815-2306 St. Thomas: 519-637-5925

Call us for a FREE Initial Adult Consultation

Hearing & Dizziness Testing for All Ages Tinnitus (Ringing) Treatment • Hearing Aids SPRUCE LANE M O T O R P R O D U C T S Familyowned since 1991 –Thehome of the FriendlyDealer Richard & Robert Bertens (519) 644-1991 14011 Belmont Rd., Belmont, ONN0L 1B0

39 Burwell Road, St. Thomas, ON (519) 633-5884 • • AYLMERRAD SHOP &AGRICULTURAL PARTS Aylmer’s best source for high-quality, fairly priced parts.

Stop in for your Die-Cast toys. Cars, trucks & tractors. Make great gifts!

519-773-3209 114 Talbot St E, Aylmer


12 Minute Drive-Thu Oil Change Limited Time Offer! No Appointment Necessary! SAVE $5 OFF Conventional Oil Change* SAVE $10 OFF Synthetic Oil Change* ti l il t ti il

DEAN PARKER 44583 Dexter Line, Union, Ontario N0L 2L0 P. 519-782-7155 F. 519-782-7143 E. Service for enthusiasts... by enthusiasts

519-631-2117 261 Talbot St. W, St. Thomas *See store for details. Offer expires Feb. 29 il i

What would it mean to your business to have your information given to thousands of neighbours? Book your ad in Real Living by emailing or calling Geoff: 519-495-7177 Book your space today, and let thousands of readers know about your business!


Page 18 Real Living • Winter 2020 To advertise here, please contact

Presenting St. Thomas & Elgin County’s Community Events Free listings compliments of Williams Funeral Home Send your event details to by the 16th for the next issue • 45 Elgin Street, St. Thomas (519) 631-0850

Allan Hughson (Owner-Funeral Director)

February 5 Dutton and District Lions Charity Bingo Dutton Dunwich Community Centre, 199 Currie Rd. 7 pm to 9:30 pm. $500 Jackpot plus Progressive and several specials February 8 4th Annual Southwold Winterfest Shedden Keystone Complex, 35921 Talbot Line 1 pm. Games, Bonfire, Hot Dogs, Cookies, Face Painting by Dotsy the Clown, Photobooth, FREE Community Evening Meal, Barn Dance and more! 741 Elgin Air Cadet Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser Royal Canadian Legion, 310 George St., Port Stanley 5-7 pm Raffle, Silent Auction, Dinner and Dessert. This is a 19+ event as the cash bar is available. $10 per ticket. Advance tickets available by emailing 741parents@gmail. com. Advance tickets are recommended as we have sold out previously. February 9 Dutton & District Lions Famous Breakfast The LIONS Den, behind the community centre in Dutton. 8:30 am to 11 am $8 gets you a full breakfast with free Smiles and eggs YOUR WAY! February 13 to 15 Aylmer Community Theatre: Secrets of a Soccer Mom 38 John St S, Aylmer Thurs-Sat at 8pm, Sun at 2pm (doors open 30 minutes prior). Three engaging women reluctantly take the field in a mothers vs. sons soccer game. They intend to let the children win, but as the game unfolds, they become intent on scoring. The competition ignites a fierce desire to recapture their youthful good-humor, independence and sexiness, paving the way toward a better understanding of themselves, their families and changes they need to make in their lives. Tickets: $20 adults, $15 students, $15 preview night (Thur Feb 6). Email: Website: February 14 to 16, February 22 to 23, and February 28 to March 1 Periscope Playhouse: Double Trouble Periscope Playhouse, 42 Wellington St, Port Burwell. Written and directed by Gord Walker. Double Trouble tells of

Library Port Burwell All events run 3-4pm March 11: Let’s Paint; March 12: Slime Time; March 14: Paper Mache March 12 March Break: Escape Room Aylmer Old Town Hall Library 2 pm March Break: Craig the Science Guy Belmont Library 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm March Break: Fantastic Fossils with Bob the Fossil Guy John Kenneth Galbraith Reference Library, Dutton 11 am to 12 pm. Participants receive a shark tooth! March Break: 14th Annual Bake-Off: Squares Port Stanley Library Starts at 11:30 am March 14 Make & Take Thursday: Bird Feeder Belmont Library 2 pm to 7 pm March Break: Princess & Prince Tea Party Port Stanley Library 2 pm to 3 pm All ages March Break: Board Games Day Rodney Library 2 pm to 8 pm All ages Throwback Thursday: Classic Board Game Challenge Springfield Library 11 am to 4 pm March 15 Messy March Break with Craig the Science Guy Straffordville Library 3pm to 4pm March Break: Fun Friday: Drop in Crafts & Surprises West Lorne Library 10 am to 5 pm March 16 March Break: Shamrock Hunt Southwold Township Library, Shedden 3 pm to 4 pm. All Ages March 27 to 29 St. Thomas Home Show Joe Thornton Community Centre, 75 CASO Crossing, St. Thomas. April 25 2nd Annual Dutton Home and Craft Show Dutton Dunwich Community Centre, 1 Scotland Dr. 9 am to 3 pm More than 40 vendors will be on hand selling everything from clothing to home décor! In support of the Wallacetown Optimist programs “bringing out the best in kids.”

Princess Avenue Playhouse, 40 Princess Ave. 7:30 pm. Dee, a vivacious widow who experiences life to the fullest, lives with her son Scott, a young man just getting over a romantic breakup. Unbeknownst to him, his mother Dee, is making ends meet by selling phone sex. Tickets: Call (519) 633-8530 for more information. February 28 and March 27 Almighty Roast Beef Supper St. John’s Anglican Church, 20 Flora St. 5 pm to 7 pm . $13 adults; $5 children 5 to 12 years. Ticket sales begin at 2:30pm. Eat in or Take out available. Come out and enjoy a heavenly meal! Contact Phone: 519-631-7368. February 28 and 29 Railway City Arts Crawl Various venues Friday, February 28, 6 pm to 9pm Saturday, February 29, 11 am to 5 pm Explore our city’s vibrant arts scene during the Railway City Arts Crawl! Visit 10 venues for your chance to win some great prizes! For more info: February 29 Arts Crawl Carnival Railway City Brewing Co., 130 Edward St. 6 pm to 11 pm .Celebrate the Art of Magic and enjoy the unique Carnival creations of local artists. Spencer MacKenzie Aylmer Old Town Hall Theatre, 38 John Street South, Aylmer. Doors open a 7 pm; show starts at 7:30 pm. Young blues musician Spencer MacKenzie will thrill audiences with this amazing talent! Tickets $25 each. To purchase tickets visit Campbell’s II (uptown Aylmer), www. (PayPal) or at the door (cash or cheque, subject to availability). Contact phone: 519-765-3039. March 4 Dutton and District Lions Charity Bingo Dutton Dunwich Community Centre, 199 Currie Rd. 2:15 pm March 11 March Break: Square Dancing with Tom Charlton Aylmer Town Hall Library 2pm March 11-14 March Break at the Fred Bodworth

a loveable tough guy who must battle a ruthless mobster and a greedy widow to protect the boss’s ditzy wife. Tickets $20. For tickets, call (519) 874-1185 or visit www. February 13 and 27 Southwold Young @ Heart Get Together Southwold Keystone Complex. 1 pm to 3 pm . Come out and spend the afternoon with other like-minded seniors! Play cards, games, shuffleboard, or simply have a chat and enjoy! For more information, contact Ian Chard at: (226) 667-4517 or Dutton & District Lions Valentine’s Dance & Yellow Perch Fish Fry Dutton Community Centre. Doors open at 5:30 pm, Dinner at 7 pm and Dance at 8 pm. $30 gets you all the Fish you can eat! Advance sales only! Contact any LIONS member for tickets. *This is an Age of Majority event February 17 Family Day Festivities Sons of Scotland Park, Dutton 11 am 2 pm Hot Chocolate, Hot Dogs and much more Family Day Open House St. Thomas-Elgin Public Art Centre, 301 Talbot St. 11 am to 2 pm. Bring the whole family for a day of activities designed to engage and entertain. Geared toward children up to about Grade 6 and their families. All activities are free. Refreshments provided. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Winter Family Fun Day Backus-Page House Museum, 29424 Lakeview Line, Wallacetown 12 pm to 4 pm Winter inspired indoor and outdoor activities from 12 - 4pm at Backus- Page House Museum. Free for all ages. Donations and volunteers welcome. Free. February 22 Coldest Night of the Year Fundraising Walk Start location TBD The Coldest Night of the Year is a family- friendly walk that raises money for charities serving hungry, homeless, and hurting people in our community. Routes measure 2km, 5km, and 10km. Register: https:// February 23 Beginning February 27 1-900-Dee-Lite

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Real Living • Winter 2020

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