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 November 30th, 2013
Robin Hood returns to Meaford (a Kids in the Meaford Hall production)

Robin Hood and the Golden Arrow at Meaford HallA few years back, Robin Hood and his merry men descended upon Meaford Hall to enthrall and engage the crowd with their gallant gaiety, chivalrous shenanigans and heroic hijinks. Next Friday, the band returns to take the stage in Robin Hood and The Golden Arrow.

The production, by Kids in the Meaford Hall, features a cast of 28 school-age actors, from local elementary and high schools in an entertaining tale packed with choreographed swordwork and action alongside musical numbers adapted from Disney’s Robin Hood.

(Last time ’round, your blogger had a hand in working on a rather fun special effect. Robin, standing at the back of the audience, drew back on his bow, and across the hall on-stage, the arrow struck the target with a thwack.)

There’s a matinee at 1 p.m. and an evening performance at 7 p.m. next Friday, December 6 at Meaford Hall. Kids 13 and under get in free. For older folks, tickets are only $15. Get yours at Meaford Hall.

posted November 23rd, 2013
More online retirement resources

Here are some more retirement resources as close as your nearest browser.

The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada has launched a free online guide to financial considerations in retirement. Living in Retirement covers such topics as budgeting during retirement, various sources of retirement income and credits – including public pension benefits, tax credits and other benefits for seniors, working in retirement, ways to protect yourself from financial abuse and fraud, and dealing with changing living needs, caregiving and other transitions.

Retirement resourcesThird Quarter bills itself “the job service for mature Canadians”. With support from the federal Office of Literacy and Essential Skills, the non-profit organization offers various online resources and information, as well as an employment service which matches employers with Canadians aged 45 and over. offers a wealth of retirement resources, including articles on finance, housing, planning, and health.

posted November 16th, 2013
Top four online retirement calculators and tools

Retirement income calculator

Service Canada has a calculator which provides you with retirement income information, including OAS and CPP benefits. It takes about 30 minutes to work through the series of modules, at which point you’ll discover how your retirement income stacks up against the 70 percent income replacement rate a lot of planners recommend. A separate calculator helps you understand how contributions to the new Post Retirement Benefit (PRB) can contribute to your financial security.

TFSA vs RRSP calculator

If you’re debating the benefits of a Tax Free Savings Account (TFSA) over a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP), here’s help. By filling out a few fields, you’ll get a good idea of whether you’ll be bettter off with contributing more to a TFSA or an RRSP now.

Life Expectancy Calculator

While you might approach it with a little trepidation, this calculator can give you a rough idea of how much you’ll need to have in retirement based on your genes, your health and your lifestyle.

Home financing, mortgage management, amortization and more

Choose from a number of mortgage calculators using the right-hand drop-down. There’s a tool for planning every stage of homeownership and mortgage renewing.

posted November 9th, 2013
Why Meaford is well positioned as a retirement destination

Last month we presented some of the findings from a major market study commissioned by Meaford Haven. Affordable housing in a high demand area and Meaford Haven’s progress on the development path, with Draft Plan of Subdivision approval, positions the retirement community as a prime location.

The study’s conclusion sums up what makes Meaford Haven a great choice. “Meaford is… removed from the hub of the bustling luxury housing market The Blue Mountains, [offering] potential buyers the advantages of a small community atmosphere, less density (more possibility for private outdoor space), with a full range of services in Meaford and an easy commute to Collingwood and Owen Sound for additional shopping and entertainment. Many potential buyers will prefer to retire to a smaller community, like Meaford, rather than places like Collingwood or Owen Sound, because of the unique charm and quaintness of Meaford, with a historic main street, and the friendliness of its residents.”

It points out that as the seasonal homes in nearby communities become retirement homes for their owners, “Meaford will be an increasingly popular location to retire for more price-sensitive older buyers from outside of the GTA and the local area. This will result in positive and stable growth overall.”

You can read the full study here.