There's a surprising lot of interesting stuff going on around here, and this space is devoted to discovering and sharing it. We'll post regular updates on merchants, activities and events. Look in often and soon you'll see why Meaford calls itself "The other Big Apple".


posted October 29th, 2013
For Hallowe’en take a ghost tour of the Meaford Museum

As darkness falls and the wind howls round the harbour, creep down to the Meaford Museum for a hauntingly good time. Tomorrow, Wednesday, October 30, and the following evening – Hallowe’en – you can take a Ghost Tour of the Meaford Museum.

This is your chance to learn about – and possibly encounter – the spirits said to roam the old building. Admission is by donation, and there’s no registration necessary.

Wednesday October, 30th at 7:00 pm
Thursday, October, 31st at 6:00 pm

To get you in the mood in the meantime, read our two-part feature on the Ghost of the Meaford Museum, starting here.

ghost girls of simcoe county

Or check out the Ghost Girls of Simcoe County’s visit to the Museum.


posted October 25th, 2013
Fifteen fantastic volunteer opportunities for retirees in Meaford

With some extra time on your hands in retirement, you’ll be able to enjoy your favourite activities and hobbies. But if you’re looking for more, volunteering for one of the many community clubs and organizations is a great way to give to the community, discover or enjoy new skills and passions, and meet new friends.

(Contact info for most of these opportunities [and others] are located here. For those not listed on that page, we’ve added links.)

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Help out behind the scenes at the Meaford International Film Festival. Volunteer for the Meaford Hall and Culture Foundation and this is just one of the cultural activities you’ll have a chance to play a part in.

Help develop trails, activities and more for the sections of Bruce Trail winding through our area, with the Beaver Valley Bruce Trail Club.

Uncover and help others discover local history at the Meaford Museum.

Design costumes, build sets, or take to the stage with Meaford Community Theatre.

Coach a hockey team or a soccer team or a softball team. (Or start your own club.)

Help bring a wild and wonderful audio and visual experience to the hills of Scotch Mountain at the Electric Eclectics Festival.

Cook up a storm for a community meal and gathering with the monthly Soupor Meal.

Host your own television program on Rogers Cable.

Identify, record and help preserve historical architecture in Meaford with Heritage Meaford, the local branch of the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario.

Get your hands dirty and grow a beautiful garden by getting involved with Adopt-a-garden/Communities in Bloom.

Gardening

Help maintain, restore and preserve an historical village church with the Friends of Leith Church.

Enjoy a walk in the park (and get busy promoting and supporting it) with the Friends of Memorial Park.

Help ensure the health of one of our local treasures (and the natural source of Meaford’s founding) with the Bighead River Heritage Association.

Support those in need in the local community with Golden Town Outreach.

Set up fences, supervise events, or man a booth at the Meaford St. Vincent Agricultural Society’s Fall Fair.

If you’re looking for more of a retirement career, stay tuned. We’ll have 10 great post-retirement jobs in Meaford soon.


posted October 17th, 2013
It’s hockey night in Meaford!

The Knights of Meaford will play their very first game on home ice tonight, starting at 7:30 p.m. The new team has already completed a seven-game road trip, which kicked with a 9-8 win against the Halton Ravens. The rest of the trip was not as auspicious, but they wrapped up with 2 wins. The team is looking forward to its home opener at the Meaford and St. Vincent Community Centre.

knights_of_meaford

The box office is open now till game time, and if you’ve got a season’s pass, come early to beat the rush. (You can also buy a season’s pass today.)

The Knights of Meaford franchise is part of the Greater Metro Jr. A Hockey League (GMHL), a developmental league for players aged 16 to 21 founded in 2006 by retired pro hockey player Bob Russell.


posted October 12th, 2013
Intel for boomers shopping for a retirement community

A lot of baby boomers have discovered a new hobby – shopping around for retirement communities that fit their future plans. So when N. Barry Lyon Consultants Limited undertook a major market study commissioned by Meaford Haven, they took into account the rural and urban areas of Meaford, as well as the Town of The Blue Mountains (Thornbury and surrounding area), Collingwood and Owen Sound.

The neighbouring municipalities acted as benchmarks, recognizing that those people searching for retirement communities would compare housing options, including pricing, sizing, location and level of amenities nearby.

At the time of the study, 25 projects, comprising 3,726 units were under application in the area.. Many of these consisted largely of traditional and bungalow townhomes, but only six included condominium apartment buildings. Meaford itself accounted for 45 percent of the total proposed units, a large amount compared to its current share of the market. Municipal planning staff suggest that the development community is discovering Meaford.

The twist is affordable housing. Many of the developments proposed, including a large one outside of urban Meaford, are aimed at an affluent market, including people looking for seasonal homes, with larger units and higher pricing. By contrast, Meaford Haven is looking at retirees and pre-retirees who are “right sizing”, and it plans to keep prices affordable.

As well, Meaford Haven is much further along in the development process than the other major proposed Meaford development, with Draft Plan of Subdivision approved.

More detailed findings from the market study:

  • Across the study area, despite all being within a 25 minute driving distance, there is a tremendous range of unit pricing in the study area.
  • Pricing ranges from $239,900 for a 985 sq. ft. for a bungalow townhome ($244 psf) at Gates of Kent in Meaford, by Reid’s Heritage Homes, or $239,900 for a 1,458 sq. ft. traditional townhome in the urban fringe of Collingwood at Tanglewood, by Sierra Group, to $699,900 for a 2,903 sq. ft. home ($241 psf) in The Blue Mountains at the Lora Bay master planned community, by Reid’s Heritage Homes.
  • In recent years, there have been homes as high as $1.2 million for a 3,759 sq. ft. townhome ($319 psf); however, such higher priced housing appears to no longer be available, perhaps indicating a slight softening of the luxury home market.
  • The majority of the vacant lot subdivisions, due to their location, exclusivity, and available lot sizes, have much higher land values than typical housing developments in the area. As a result, such subdivisions, once built upon, would constitute the high end of the price range in the study area. For example, The Birches of Georgian has serviced lots as high as $259,900, Peaks Bay in Camperdown has lots priced as high as $599,900, and Windrose Valley (actually located in Clearview Township directly abutting the Craigleith area) has five completed model homes on lots priced as high as $2.25 million.
  • All of the above indicates that many potential buyers, including younger and older seniors, looking to purchase in the area will be priced out of The Blue Mountains.
  • On an overall basis, the less expensive homes in the study area are located in Meaford and Collingwood.
  • Typical entry-level pricing for new housing in Meaford is roughly $75,000 lower than projects in Collingwood and $220,000 lower than projects in The Blue Mountains.
  • By housing form, pricing and sizing is as follows:
    • Detached homes in the study area range from $259,000 at Golfview Estates, to $699,900 for
      a 2,903 sq. ft. unit ($241 psf) in Lora Bay.
    • Interestingly, some of the most expensive housing units in the study area are townhomes –
      bungalows or traditional two to three storey units. Townhomes in the study area range from $239,900 for a 985 sq. ft. unit ($244 psf) in Meaford, to $579,900 for a 3,318 sq. ft. unit ($175 psf) in Thornbury.
    • Semi-detached units, of which there are four developments in the study area, range from $259,990 for a 1,040 sq. ft. unit ($250 psf) in Collingwood’s new urban area, to $599,900 for a 2,343 sq. ft. unit ($241 psf) in Craigleith.

More from the study next time.


posted October 4th, 2013
The scarecrows are coming!

Well, actually they’re already here. If you’ve been through town lately, you’ll have seen the circus scarecrows hanging out (in some cases literally!).

But don’t forget the action today in downtown Meaford. AT 5 p.m., it’s a pre-parade show by the OPP Golden Helmets Precision Motorcycle Team. At 6, the scarecrows parade down the main street to the harbour. And at 6:30, enjoy the free Family Festival sponsored by Scotiabank, with activities, surprises and fun for all ages.

Meaford Scarecrow Invasion

Meaford Scarecrow Invasion

Meaford Scarecrow Invasion

Meaford Scarecrow Invasion