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 May 30th, 2014
Popular Meaford artists featured in major retrospective at Meaford Hall

A new exhibition at Meaford Hall showcases a story of love and shared passion that found fulfillment in Meaford. Chuck Finley and Margot Bodwell met in Toronto in the late 1930s, where they both worked in the Advertising Department at Eaton’s. The romance blossomed, though they waited till 1954 to marry, with war service and busy careers occupying much of the intervening years.

Chuck and Margot FindleyWhen they both retired, in 1967, Chuck brought Margot home to his native Meaford, and in their retirement years, they found time to devote to their shared passion for painting.

Their works capture many sides of Meaford. Chuck’s work in oils depicted local landscapes, and Margot focused on watercolours of old barns, houses and municipal buildings. Neighbours and friends admired their work, and Chuck’s and Margot’s paintings hung on the walls of many a Meaford home.

Last year, a group of volunteers decided to mount a retrospective of their work, and they put out a call for paintings owned by people in the community. Committee Chair, Jack Morgan, notes that the careers of the two artists spanned much of the 20th century and that this retrospective exhibit would attempt to document some small part of that history as reflected in the lives of the artists.

The Charles and Margot Finley Retrospective Exhibition opens on Wednesday, with a reception in the Meaford Hall Galleries on Thursday. Admission is free.

The Exhibition runs till July 30.

posted May 24th, 2014
How a new view of retirement living explodes old ideas

A (sponsored) article today in the Northumberland News attempts to explain the difference between “retirement residences” and “nursing homes”. It suggests that some people are confused, and might shy away from moving to a retirement residence because they equate it with a nursing home.

It boils down to independence, the piece explains, with retirement residences allowing you to live in private and semi-private accommodations, with light housekeeping and meals provided. Long-term-care facilities, on the other hand, offer 24-hour nursing care and supervision among other services for those who are no longer willing or able to live independently.

ontario retirement homes

This is a fairly reductive take on the subject. The article doesn’t explore the options available for those in early retirement – such as fully independent living within a retirement community.

And finally, there’s a new concept of retirement living which combines all three of these scenarios into something much richer. That’s the concept behind Meaford Haven, which makes it a “Three-Seasons Community™”. At Meaford Haven, you can choose the accommodation and lifestyle that suits you. In your early retirement years, you can live independently in a comfortable, manageable bungalow; with outdoor chores crossed off your list, you have plenty of time to explore and engage in all that Meaford and the Georgian Bay area has to offer. Or you can choose the mid-rise condominiums and apartments, which provide a greater level of security and service. And then there’s our full care accommodations.

With all of these different facilities situated in one community, Meaford Haven is greater than the sum of its parts. As you decide you’re ready for a more structured environment, you can move without leaving behind your friends, the places you’ve grown to love and the community you’ve become part of.

posted May 17th, 2014
Stay tuned for Meaford’s new radio station

Last summer, we told you that Meaford might soon have its own radio station. Well, by mid July, you’ll be able to tune in to “Jewel 99.3 FM” to hear a very broad selection of easy listening music and local news throughout the week.

Jewel 99.3 Meaford

Speaking informally to a business gathering this week, Glenn Stewart said the station’s rotation will feature about 1,800 songs a week, compared to the 300 to 500 you’ll find on most other stations. “Everything from Beyoncé to Tony Bennet, Michael Bublé, Rod Stewart, Elton John and Nana Mouskouri,” says Stewart. “Not as old as the oldies station, and not as young as some others. It will be the perfect mix for our area.”

While the “Apple FM” moniker has been replaced by the established “Jewel FM” brand, the station will have a strong local flavour. A local morning team will deliver live news, weather and happenings, and you’ll also hear live local news in the afternoon. The midday slot will feature the syndicated John Tesh Radio Show, and his popular “Intelligence For Your Life” bits.

The station will begin testing its transmitter within the next couple of weeks, and tests will continue through June. Sometime in July, they’ll flip the switch, so stay tuned!

posted May 9th, 2014
Beautiful Joe on stage in Meaford

Beautiful Joe found a place in the hearts of millions around the world, and it all started in Meaford. The tale of an abused dog who found a new life with kind owners has been re-incarted before. In the 90s, a local group premiered a play about the pooch at Meaford Hall. At one point or another, Disney has been said to be interested in producing a movie about the mutt. And now, for the second time in 20 years, a new play about Beautiful Joe premieres, produced by the Grey-Bruce Arts Collective in association with the Beautiful Joe Heritage Society . (It’s also Meaford’s second dramatic world premiere in three weeks!)

Beautiful Joe - the play

This time, acclaimed Canadian playwright Michael O’Brien penned the drama, based on Margaret Marshall Saunders’s novel. O’Brien has had productions mounted at major venues and with major companies across Canada, including the National Arts Centre, YPT, Theatre Columbus, the Shaw Festival, and CBC radio. His works and adaptions have been nominated for a Governor General’s Award for Drama and won a Dora Award for Best Production of a Musical.

Beautiful Joe, which kicks off on Wednesday, features professional actors from around the province, and was workshopped last year at the SpringWorks Festival in Stratford, Ontario. It’s “a moving and funny tale for the whole family set in a distinctly Canadian landscape… an invaluable lesson in courage and compassion.”

Limited engagement – only 6 performances – at Meaford Hall
Wednesday, May 14 (Preview Performance): 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, May 15 (Opening Performance): 7:30 p.m.
Friday, May 16: 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 17: 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Tickets are $25 for Adults and $10 for students and can be purchased through the Meaford Hall Box Office at 1.877.538.0463.

posted May 3rd, 2014
Learn how to build a scarecrow

It’s not too early to be thinking about autumn and scarecrows, at least not in Meaford.

The annual Meaford Scarecrow Invasion and Family Festival crew starts gearing up before the snow has melted, and they’re calling for volunteers. Coming very soon are a series of Scarecrow Building Workshops at the Harbour Pavilion. There’s more art to it than you might think. Learn how to stuff, clothe and give character to your favorite scarecrow.

And check out this video on volunteering to get an idea of what goes into the Festival, and how you can get involved.

To sign up, visit the festival’s volunteer page.