Newsletter May 2013

Trail Talk

I recently attended the Active Transportation Forum hosted by the Health Unit, the Healthy Communities Partnership and Pathways for People. My interest was related to the fact that I am a local Realtor and efforts made to enhance the quality of life, in neighborhoods I service, are of great interest to me. The decision to live in a community is influenced by many factors, and one of the main ones is leisure activities.
In my service area, Port Rowan and vicinity, the over 55 age group have been the predominant buyers followed by a younger demographic in the Point. Both groups are affluent and enjoy good healthy living. Trails for walking and biking, street design and good town planning promote the lifestyle buyers are looking for and attract real dollars for growth and development.
I was excited to hear of the progress to date by the County and Pathways for People and the ongoing plans to continue developing and linking our area with others of a similar nature. Good job and thank you.

Submitted by David Cronk, Realtor

Active Transportation Forum

Active Transportation [AT] refers to any form of human-powered transportation – walking, cycling, using a wheelchair, in-line skating or skateboarding. For people to choose AT more often, they need a safe and supportive environment in which to do so. Our built environment can help or hinder people’s choices to walk or cycle.

On March 12, the H-N Health Unit and Planning staff from both counties, with financial support from our local Healthy Communities Partnership, hosted the Supporting Active Transportation through Policy Forum in Fisherville. This half-day forum brought together multi-department staff, management and Council representatives from both counties along with community stakeholder groups which included the OPP, Conservation Authority, local trail groups, Norfolk Pathways for People and Ride Norfolk.

Participants learned that it takes many partners / stakeholders to create a community that supports AT. Participants identified potential AT next steps, related to policy, for their respective counties. These next steps will be presented to Haldimand and Norfolk Councils for support. Stay tuned for further developments.

Submitted by Michele Crowley

Ride Norfolk

There are some new changes to the Ride Norfolk schedule to better
serve all residents in Norfolk County.
For more information, contact Brad Smith, Public Transportation Coordinator
at 519-428-3178, [email protected] or visit .

Take the Healthy Hikes Challenge: May 1 to October 31, 2013

Long Point Region Conservation Authority challenges you to spend time hiking in any of the 270 Conservation Areas and track your progress for a chance to win great prizes!

Healthy Hikes events will teach you about the ways our environment boosts your health and how you can energize your body and mind by stepping into nature.
Visit for more information and to register. 

Nature Outings and Events at Backus Heritage Conservation Area

Firefly Walk
June 30: 8 pm

Owl Prowl
July 13: 8 pm

Family Orienteering Challenge
July 20: 1-4 pm

Bird Detectives
August 11: 10 am

Creatures of the Night
August 17: 8 pm

Living from Plants
August 18: 10 am

Insect Safari
August 24: 1-4 pm

Owl Prowl
Sept 14: 7 pm

Fall Interpretive Walk
October 12: 11 am

Call 519-586-2201 Ext. 5
or email [email protected] to register.

Visit for event information.

Turkey Point Mountain Bike Club

TPMBC is now entering our third year and membership continues to grow with 80 paid members. Our website has been revamped by Matt Palermo and re-launched on February 15, and since then has had 112,000 hits. The network trails are becoming more popular as more outdoor enthusiasts are discovering them.

Youth Cycling Initiative – TPMBC is partnering with local high schools to develop youth cycling programs as part of the physical education curriculum. Holy Trinity teacher Tyler Backus is leading this program in cooperation with local schools and TPMBC. We have two main goals: 1) introduce students to cycling as a fun and social way to exercise; 2) provide and fund opportunities for athletes to pursue cycling at a competitive level. The new cyclists train and ride on TPMBC trails and receive coaching tips from members on our weekly rides.

Ontario Trillium Foundation Grant – TPMBC is near completing our OTF grant to upgrade our trail network with maps and signage. Three beautiful bridges were also erected over Gibson Creek that will allow safe passage over the creek while preventing erosion to the creek banks. TPMBC volunteers have committed 1200 hours to this project. The project ribbon cutting will be presided over by Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett; Norfolk Mayor Dennis Travale and Ontario Trillium Foundation officials on May 25 at 2:30pm at Long Point Eco-Adventures. 

Submitted by Rob Luke –

Tick Talk

Norfolk County is home to a wealth of natural beauty and outdoor recreational opportunities. However, the County is also home to blacklegged ticks (formerly known as deer ticks) that can, in some cases, transmit Lyme disease. Infected tick populations are hanging out in Turkey Point and Long Point but can be found anywhere across the County, or province.

Young ticks are about the size of a poppy seed, making them difficult to see. Adult blacklegged ticks are about the size of a sesame seed, and orange-brown in colour. Regardless of the time of year, take a few minutes to protect yourself from tick bites before heading outdoors.

How to prevent Lyme disease
When walking in wooded or grassy areas, wear a long-sleeved shirt, and tuck your pants into your socks. Wearing light colored clothing also makes spotting ticks easier.
Stick to trails and avoid walking through low bushes and long grass.
Check yourself, your children and your pets for ticks. Make sure to look in the armpits, backs of the knees, groin areas and scalp.
Use insect repellents containing DEET. Read the label when using any repellent, especially when using them on young children.

Enjoy the beauty of summer time in Norfolk… but without a twist of Lyme. 

Submitted by Josh Daley

Waterford Heritage Trail

The growth of the Waterford Heritage Trail starts with community which was evident during events of the last month. In April, the Rail Lands Redevelopment Committee (subcommittee of the WHT) held a tree planting and clean-up from the railroad station to the mini Black Bridge. Andy Kooistra and his son Vic, of Anders Contracting, provided the heavy equipment to help plant 38 native trees, 10 different species donated by Leon de Walae and John Wallace.  

We cleared invasive trees and shrubs from the area with the help of some sturdy trail members. Why sturdy? Did I mention that we chose from among all those beautiful April days, one that was very cold and threatened rain? Joining us as well was a group of local Geocachers for a Cache-In-Trash-Out event and they cleaned up garbage throughout the area. If that wasn’t community enough, our Legion Branch 123, which overlooks the park, treated 50 of us to a welcoming, warm and delicious lunch.

Another example of community trail involvement starts with high school students and ends on a sweet note. To honour National Youth Week, Norfolk County Community Services organized a get-to-know-you walk for some students from Simcoe Composite School and Waterford District High School. SCS set out from Simcoe and WDHS from Waterford under sunny skies with me tagging along. Meeting at Bloomsburg, Community Services personnel provided ice cream, water and activities for the students to intermingle. It was a very worthwhile event. 

Now here’s the sweet part of the story. As we approached the Concession 10 trail gate, a van pulled up and five big guys got out and walked towards us. I’m thinking, “What’s this?”, especially when they stripped off their shirts revealing chests with large black lettering spelling P-R-O-M-? That’s when one of the students turned to his girlfriend and asked her to the prom. She said yes.

Our community has embraced the WHT. The trail provides a great opportunity to get out there, meet people and embrace our community. I’m glad I did.

We also have a new website!

Submitted by Frank Woodcock

Norfolk Pathways for People Members •  

Joyce Flexman, Chairperson
Gord Mason, Trail Advisory Committee
Al Ladd, Community member
Ruth Loughton, Community member
Anne Wynia, Community member
Rob Luke, Turkey Point Mountain Bike Club
Dave Challen, Lynn Valley Trail Association
Ingrid Zyma-Irvin, Norfolk County Community Services Dept.
Janice Robertson, Long Point Region Conservation Area
Bruce Robinson, Community member
Frank Woodcock, Waterford Heritage Trail
Michele Crowley, Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit

Interested in becoming a member of Pathways for People? Contact Michele at 519-426-6170 Ext. 3239.

The Lynn Valley Trail Association

It’s nice to see that spring has finally arrived and also to note the large number of people utilizing the trail. We are now focusing on our Bridge Upgrade and Trail Resurfacing Project. The plan is to replace 26 bridge supports on the Burt and Robinson bridges and to resurface the two kilometers of this portion of the trail. This will be a huge improvement for accessibility.

We last reported an estimated cost of $265,000 to complete this project. To our surprise, our competitive quotes have reduced the cost to $140,000. A Trillium grant is in progress to help fund this endeavor and with Norfolk County support and our fundraising effort we hope to be able to proceed with the project in August. This will mean a trail closure between Decou and Ireland roads for about 4 weeks. Signs with a detour route will be posted during this time.

Donations to support the project can be mailed to LVTA, PO Box 993, Simcoe, Ontario N3Y 5B3, or by contacting any LVTA board member.

Friendly Reminders
Photographers: It’s time to take spring and summer photos for the Norfolk County Fair photography and poster contest sponsored by the LVTA.
Cyclists: Please remember to ring your bell when approaching walkers and runners to provide them with some warning.

Happy hiking, biking and walking.

Submitted by Paul Beischlag, President

Lynn Valley Trail Celebrates 20 Years!

We couldn’t have been more pleased with the amazing weather that greeted everyone at the 20th anniversary celebration of the opening of the Lynn Valley Trail. On May 5th, over 50 people attended the event – including trail supporters, their pets, visionaries of the trail, and local dignitaries.

MPP Toby Barrett brought greetings and introduced his father, Harry, a well known local writer and historian, and one of the trail founders. Harry spoke of how the trail idea sprang from a backyard chat with Chris Lee, Don Hurst and himself, and of the work done in the early years to get governments, abutting landowners and users onside.

Mayor Dennis Travale presented a certificate to LVTA to acknowledge its vital contribution to the community, providing a beautiful natural trail for walking, running, and cycling.

LVTA President, Paul Beischlag, welcomed the group and thanked volunteers for the tremendous effort in bringing the trail from an abandoned rail line to today’s busy recreational trail. He updated the group on the bridge repair and trail resurfacing project and the generous donation that has been received from Ontario Power Generation. OPG Representative Susan Thurston spoke to acknowledge the value of the trail in our community.

Past president and avid LVT volunteer, Gord Pennington, spoke fondly of his friend and co-worker, Chris Lee, who devoted tremendous time and effort to bring the rail trail to fruition. Chris’ siblings, Katherine Anderson and Bob Lee, unveiled the memorial stone and plaque in their brother’s honour. The stone recognizing Chris as the trail founder is located at the Memorial Park entrance to the trail.

What festivity would be complete without a cake? CLASS (Community Living Access Support Services) was holding a walk-a-thon in the park and provided an anniversary cake. Fundraising co-coordinator Marilyn Davidson and her volunteers served refreshments to the trail supporters as the celebration came to an end.

Submitted by Scott Fletcher, Barb Boyko and Diane Clark

We need your E-Mail!

By sending newsletters and other communications by e-mail, we can ensure that your membership fees and donations go directly into trail initiatives. It will let us save a few trees as well. Just email Peter Munzar at [email protected]. Thanks for your help.

2013 LVTA Board of Directors


President, Paul Beischlag – 519-426-8591
Treasurer, Peter Munzar – 519-583-1101
Secretary, Mike Davis – 519-429-3323
Past President, Paul Cunningham – 519-583-1378


Corina Bachmann – 519-428-8090
Barb Boyko – 519-583-3971
Dave Challen – 519-583-1090
Diane Clark – 519-426-0339
Scott Fletcher – 519-426-6218
Malcolm Meller – 519-583-1124
Dan Robinson – 519-428-2487
Diane Luke – 519-428-1385
Kerstein Mallon – 519-909-8993
Charlie Upshall – 519-583-9544