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Meanwhile back at the Branch…


Branch 370 news by Shelley Cumberland

Just a brief note this week, some upcoming events at the IL (Iroquois Legion).

Remembrance Day is fast approaching and the Honours and Awards Banquet will be held Saturday, November 5th, 2011. There will be a social hour from 5 to 6pm, followed by dinner at 7pm. This is a potluck, so bring your favourite dish and enjoy a night out!

There will be a Turkey Dart Shoot on December 10th, starting at 11am. Cost is $2 per round and there will be a bling draw for teams.

The local Membership Drive is underway, so don’t forget to pay your dues. The Early Bird special is $30 until November 30th. After than due go up to $40 until December 31st.

Friday lunch this week is lasagna with garlic toast and salad, followed by date and apple squares for dessert. Wing Night gets going that same evening at 6pm.

There are sign up sheets posted for a couple of sports events! Zone Cribbage will be held in Morrisburg this year on November 26th so you need to sign up ASAP! Zone Euchre will be held at our Branch, 370, on January 28th.

It was a great turn out for Eddy and the Stingrays this past Saturday night with some 115 plus tickets sold. There were lots of new faces in the crowd, great to see, and a great job done by the Entertainment Committee.

Take care until next week


Thought of the week: I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. The heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind. John Diefenbaker (1895 – 1963) 13th Prime Minister of Canada


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Keeping our patients safe


by Janice Banford

I’ve worked at WDMH for 37 years and every day is different. That’s what I love about my job. 

As the Infection Control Coordinator for the past eight years, my responsibilities are very varied as I work with health care professionals and patients to ensure that everyone is aware of important infection control practices and guidelines that keep us all safe. My work includes promotion, policy development, data collection and education. We want to ensure that all patient care activities put safety first. 

This fall, our focus is on preventing the spread of illness through good hand hygiene. Washing your hands is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of infection and everyone has a role to play.  

At WDMH, we want to get people talking and reminding each other about the importance of washing their hands. In fact, staff, physicians and volunteers are wearing bright blue “Ask Me If I Washed My Hand” buttons as a great reminder. Don’t be shy – speak up!

We are also encouraging everyone to get a flu shot. It’s the best way to stay healthy – for you, your family and those who might be at greater risk around you. You can’t get the flu (or any other illness) from the flu shot and the benefits far outweigh a sore arm for a couple of days.

I love what I do and could not do it without the outstanding support of my colleagues.   Their commitment to patient safety is invaluable to the success of the program. 

Everyone at WDMH – including our patients – has a role and responsibility in Infection Prevention and Control. 


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Ontario election


Congratulations to Jim McDonnell! Jim was successful in winning the position of MPP for Stormont Dundas and South Glengarry following the retirement of Jim Brownell.

I will miss Jim Brownell. Jim and I worked well together. Although we represented different political parties we were able to cooperate and collaborate in a non partisan way for the good of SD&SG. 

Jim and I both felt that the needs of the constituents of SD&SG came before political loyalties. We had much success on projects like the Benson Sportsplex, the Emergency Services building, the O.P.P. station in Long Sault, the sewage disposal upgrade in South Dundas, the Belmeade Road in North Dundas and countless others. 

We often reminisce and chuckle about a project vital to Cornwall that we had both worked very hard on. We both happened to be at a church supper in Finch when we simultaneously received a blackberry message telling us that the funding was being rejected. We quickly huddled in the corner, devised a strategy to each call our own party’s Minister responsible for the decision and had the project back on track before leaving the hall.

I am very much looking forward to working with Jim’s successor, Jim McDonnell. I have known the new MPP elect for 14 years. As MP I have worked closely with Jim in his former capacity as Mayor of South Glengarry. Jim is a consummate professional. He is a man of integrity, hard working and a tireless advocate for his constituents. 

I am confident Jim McDonnell will be a great MPP for the riding of SD&SG. I am looking forward to working closely with him to ensure SD&SG realizes its full potential.

Guy Lauzon 

Member of Parliament

Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry


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Canada supports economic growth in Eastern Ontario


Eastern Ontario businesses and communities will benefit from a renewed investment in the region announced today by Guy Lauzon, Member of Parliament for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).  

A Government of Canada investment of $30 million over the next three years will support the renewal of the Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP), resulting in a greater number of economic development initiatives and improved partnerships throughout Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry. 

“I am happy that the Minister has made the decision to approve funding for a three year period,” said Lauzon, “this will permit EODP to develop a multiyear strategic plan.”

“I am proud today to announce that our government is moving forward with its commitment to create jobs and economic growth here in eastern Ontario,” said Minister Goodyear. “This additional investment in the Eastern Ontario Development Program will offer new opportunities for the people, businesses and communities in this region.” 

 The Program is managed by FedDev Ontario and funding will be delivered by 15 Community Futures Development Corporations located throughout rural Eastern Ontario.

“This announcement is welcome news for SD & SG,” said Carma Williams, Vice Chair SD & G Community Futures Development Corporation, “it will allow us to do multi-year planning.”

Press Release

“The Eastern Ontario Development Program has been a catalyst for business and community development across eastern Ontario for a number of years,” said Dan Stanford, Chair of the Eastern Ontario CFDC Network. “We are pleased to continue our partnership with the Government of Canada so that Community Futures Development Corporations can support projects that will grow and diversify the regional economy.” 

To find out more about the Eastern Ontario Development Program and how to access program funding, please refer to the backgrounder or visit the FedDev Ontario website at 


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If you build it, they will come


 Quick, answer this question: How many hiking trails are within close distance to where you live?

Thanks to South Nation Conservation (SNC) you can add a new one to the short list. Two Creeks Conservation Area, just off County Road 2 between Morrisburg and Iroquois, is free and open for visitors.

At the October 18th South Dundas council meeting, SNC Assistant Works Superintendents David Fitch and Mike Leger gave a presentation on the progress made and the plans that remain. SNC Board Chair Lawrence Levere was also present.

The 400 acres of property previously owned by Domtar became available for purchase when Domtar closed. 

SNC took the opportunity to purchase the land and credits Don Graham for the find: “he was a great help to us to get this thing started.”

Graham, a member of DIAMONDS Conservation Land Trust (DCLT), had an agreement with Domtar whereby the land was used for trails and open to the public.

Graham explained that when Domtar began “to pull out of things locally, we (DCLT) had to get out too because we didn’t have an agreement” with anyone else for use of the land.

DCLT and Graham talked with SNC and left information about the area and the situation in the hope that they would pick up the land, and with it the project.

“Their purposes are exactly what Diamonds were,” said Graham. “I supplied background information” to help SNC.

“The future now looks rosy; looks like it could be fun for Morrisburg, Iroquois and South Dundas,” he said. Two Creeks is “a real boon to the township.”

Fitch reported to council that local contractors, Lloyd McMillan Equipment Ltd. of Iroquois and Cruikshank Construction of Morrisburg, have been helping out on the park.

It’s been “very good for us and for the township, working together on this,” said Fitch.

He told council that one of the first steps, “getting the parking lot back in order and usable,” is now completed.

In addition, the first trail section is “about 99 per cent completed.” The second and third trail sections will take longer, probably  years, to complete. The “time frame depends on usage of the park.”

As for the trail that’s completed, Fitch reported: “Right now we have about four and a half kilometers of trail that’s been reestablished.”

“We’ve had to put a lot of hard work into this (as there was) quite a lot of bush hogging in there to get it cleared out.”

“Approximately 150 tons of gravel” was used due to wet and low areas. Fitch estimates that by the time SNC is done they’ll have used “half a million tons of gravel.”

“Because of the length of the trail, we can’t do it all in one shot,” he explained. Also, due to the “creek that runs through the property, (SNC) had to build a bridge across.”

Building the bridge required a permit and an on site inspection. The trails are five feet wide and the bridge, which has been “heavily constructed to hold vehicles (is) 52 feet long with ramps down both sides.”

The “possibilities are endless with this park,” Fitch said, predicting: “You’ll find there’s going to be a lot of use in this park.”

He showed council a picture of  the “Two Creeks Conservation Area” sign that SNC plans to erect on County Road 2, saying, “this should bring a lot more people to the park.”

South Dundas Deputy Mayor Jim Locke complimented SNC saying, it “looks like a job well done. (There’s) a lot of potential.”

“This is going to get used quite a bit,”  he predicted.

While motorized vehicles are prohibited on the trails, bicycles are welcomed.

In terms of money spent on the project, Fitch told council that so far SNC has spent “about $6,000 to $7,000 in materials.”

“We didn’t waste anything,” he continued. It was “all planned out; we knew what we needed.”

The “parking lot was the biggest expense, “ he explained. It “might have been under $10,000 total.”

“Over the years there will be quite a bit of money put into it. Eventually there will be over ten kilometers of trails.”

Councillor Evonne Delegarde inquired as to whether the trails would be open in winter. Fitch replied, “most are closed in the winter time, but are used year round, 24/7.”

He further explained “closed” meant that the trails are not groomed during winter, but the area is still “open” and accessible to the public.

SNC’s Levere added, “we’re not in the business of keeping people out of our parks for legitimate uses.”

Many people use SNC trails for hiking, bird watching, cross-country skiing, biking and more.

According to their website, SNC “encourage all watershed residents to become familiar with the unique beauty of your natural surroundings and understand the importance of maintaining our local environment.”

They ask that visitors “take only pictures and leave only footprints.”

South Dundas Mayor, Steven Byvelds said, “I hope we can promote this together.”

Levere responded with a slightly altered quote from the movie Field of Dreams: “If you build it, they will come.”


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Sears fashion fund raiser


Time to step out in style with a little help from Sears and River Rat Treasures. 

On Sunday, November 6,  beginning at 1 p.m., Seaway District High School parents council is joining Sears, Iroquois, in putting together a bold, bright show of the latest Sears fashions as part of a school fund raiser. 

“Every year, Sears and River Rat Treasures stages a fashion fund raiser,” said Candace Menges, co-owner of Sears and River Rat Treasures in Iroquois, “and chooses a local charity or organization as the recipient. This year we were approached by the Seaway District High School parents’ council. Chair Leslie Disheau explained the school is raising funds for classroom equipment and learning materials, such as SmartBoards,  We were glad to help: Seaway will be this year’s recipient of proceeds from our annual fashion show.”

Also lending their support in the community will be Scotia Bank, Morrisburg, which has agreed to match any funds raised by the fashion show. 

With the backing of corporate Sears, Menges has arranged for over 16 volunteer models, ages seven to 70, to walk the runway at the afternoon show. 

“Our models are a wide variety of ages, shapes and sizes,” she said, “because Sears offers a wide variety of stylish clothing in all shapes and sizes. Among the models for the show will be Seaway principal Terry Gardiner and guidance head, Mark Lewis.”

With a Mardi Gras theme, and all the colour and fun of Carnival, this fashion show is sure to thrill guests. 

Local vendors will have displays around the Seaway gymnasium, (where the fashion show will take place). They will be offering some great deals, discounts and specials to visitors. Look for outstanding door prizes and enjoy some delicious refreshments served by the parents council. 

As an additional bonus, the first 100 ticket holders who arrive at the show will receive a very special gift. 

With the Christmas party season nearing, and, for some lucky travellers, upcoming cruises, this timely fashion event will show off great clothing ideas from Sears.

“We’ll be showing every day wear, evening, party and cruise wear for both men and women,” Menges said. “There will be some wonderful fashions for guests to enjoy.”

Tickets for the Carnival of Fashion are $10 for adults, $5 for youth and children under four, free. 

Advance tickets can be purchased at Sears Iroquois and Morrisburg and from the Seaway parents council.

Don’t miss the Carnival of Fashion Fund Raiser on November 6 at Seaway High School. 


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Doug MacLeod Blues Concert at Morrisburg United Church


“I pretty much believe the blues chose me,” said Doug MacLeod, in his slightly drawling, mellow voice, at the outset of an interview with the Morrisburg Leader. “To sing the blues, you’ve got to be singing from the heart.”

MacLeod, who is reckoned one of the finest blues singer-songwriters in North America, is coming to Morrisburg for a one night only concert on Friday, November 11. Blues by the Lakeshore will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the United Church of Morrisburg. 

From California MacLeod shared insights into his life and music and why, for over 28 years, he’s been a blues man.

Born in New York City, MacLeod grew up in the 60’s. 

“I had a turbulent childhood,” he laughed, “and the result was I had a big chip on my shoulder. Then my family took a trip to St. Louis, and I heard people singing the blues for the first time. I was stunned. I couldn’t believe the sheer joy those singers had.”

Blues has its roots in the black experience of the American South. 

From the outset, MacLeod found himself drawn to these black musicians who, despite facing widespread prejudice (so much part of the 60’s scene) and often all the drawbacks of poverty, none-the-less expressed themselves in rich and soulful music. 

“I thought to myself, I want to be around this joy,” MacLeod said. 

He began to play and to sing with some of these Old Masters, gradually absorbing their culture,  and living their lives, making the blues his own. 

“What I learned is singing the blues really means making a negative life positive. Maybe you don’t have control over every thing that happens to you in life, but you can survive. I find that I am comfortable with this music. It speaks to my soul. And,” MacLeod added, laughing, “you gotta be what you are, not what you ain’t.” 

A born story teller, whose warm and witty songs reflect his own experiences and his out look on life, MacLeod has been given the title Master of Original Acoustic Blues. He’s played gigs with some of the greatest blues men, performers like Big Joe Turner, George Smith, Pee Wee Crayton, and Joe Louis Walker. 

MacLeod’s songs have been featured in TV movies and on the show In the Heat of the Night. Two of his songs are on Grammy nominated albums by Albert King and Albert Collins. 

He hosted Nothin’ But the Blues on Los Angeles’ KLON-KKJZ radio for five years and is a noted authority on finger style acoustic guitar. 

MacLeod has released 18 studio albums, several live records and a live performance DVD. During his Morrisburg concert he will be performing some numbers from his March 2011 release, Brand New Eyes.

MacLeod said that his blues inspirations are definitely varied and often anchored in his own experiences.

“I’m honest about my life and honest in my music when I sing about love and hard times,” he explained. 

“Truth be told, although I have a wonderful life now and I’ve been happily married for years, let’s just say there’s a lot of girls out there in my past who may not have a lot of kind things to say about me,” he laughed. “Ernest Banks once told me never write or sing about what you don’t know about.”

He hasn’t ignored so-called ‘issues’: he penned the Outspoken Politician Blues and he’s written about lies and liars. However, blues, MacLeod said, “make a mighty big canvas. You can write love songs, sad songs, protest songs.  I think Willie Dixon put it this way, ‘blues is the true facts of life.’”

Doug MacLeod will be performing solo during his Morrisburg concert. While he has worked with bands, especially in his first four albums, he admits that he is more comfortable performing alone.

“I often change my songs somewhat from performance to performance. The way I sing a song on Friday isn’t exactly the way I sing it on Saturday. It can drive a band crazy when you do that: they don’t know where you’re going to start or go.”

Audiences attending Doug MacLeod’s concert on November 11, at The United Church of Morrisburg, can look forward to a memorable evening with a colourful, multi-talented and charming musician. 

“I love telling stories around my songs. I tell stories from my life, some poignant, some humorous, all true. When I sing, I invite the audience into the song. I invite them to become part of the music.”

Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. concert are on sale for $25 each at the Basket Case in Morrisburg,   by calling 613-887-9210, or by booking online at


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Del Barber coming to St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage


The St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage is presenting the second concert in its stellar 2011-12 musical series on Saturday, October 29, 7 p.m., at the Morrisburg Meeting Centre. 

Outstanding artist Del Barber, fresh from winning two Western Canada Music Awards just this week for his latest album Love Songs of the Last Twenty, will be performing one concert only at the St. Lawrence Stage. Audiences won’t want to miss this talented, critically acclaimed performer.

Although his music has been described as folk, folk rock, Americana, country and alt, Barber isn’t really interested in being ‘defined’. 

“I think I am first and foremost a song-writer,” Barber told The Leader. “My goal is to let people describe me in a lot of ways, not to be placed into one genre. Some days, I’m more county, some days more folk. I like audiences to decide for themselves.”

Born in Winnipeg (and a proud Westerner), Del Barber began writing and singing from a very early age. With a growing critical reputation and fan base, he has turned to music full time. “I find now that I have to keep up to my work load,” he laughed. “Last year I did 200 concerts. But I love it. Music is the focus of my life.”

His Western roots keep him anchored and flavour his approach to song writing. 

“I like to write about places,” he said, “about how we are all connected to history, about how history affects us. Home, places, the prairies themselves are strong themes for me. There is also, I think, a strong narrative in my writing because I want my songs to be accessible, understandable to people, familiar to them.

It bothers me when some writers are vague in what they are saying. I believe that musical stories are more moving, and in the end, a better way to make my points. And oh yes,” Barber added, laughing. “I write about hockey too. What Canadian doesn’t write about hockey?” 

The Winnipeg Free Press described Barber as “sincere and heartfelt as the day is long” and wrote that his presence on stage is “electric.” 

There is also an underlying humour to Barber’s music, maybe a little touch of cynicism.

“I think that people often leave my shows laughing. There is a light-heartedness, a bit of nostalgia to my songs,” he said, then added with a laugh, “I don’t want to be a whiner.”

Just turned 28, Barber describes his guitar as “his voice” and is looking forward to the intimacy of the St. Lawrence stage. “As a performer, I like to get a strong sense of my audience and Morrisburg will offer that.”

His reputation as an outstanding artist is steadily growing. In 2010, he was nominated for a Western Canada Music Award. In 2011, he was nominated for a Juno. This October, 2011, Barber won  West Coast Music Awards for roots recording of the year, and independent recording of the year. 

“All my chips are in. Music is my life. There’s risk in that, of course, but I like to be challenged,” Del Barber said.

No stranger to challenge herself, and an artist for whom music and performance is a “life direction”, Carleton Place singer Brea Lawrenson will open for Del Barber on the St. Lawrence Stage on October 29.

“I was so excited to be asked to open for Del,” Lawrenson told The Leader. “He’s an incredible writer and story teller, just a great performer. It is a very significant move for me to meet and work and share with an artist who is really succeeding.”

However, Brea Lawrenson seems on the brink of ‘breaking out’ herself. 

A trained singer with a rich soprano voice, she has performed on the St. Lawrence Stage before in Intimate Acoustics, and has become an audience favourite. She finds her musical home in country, and has recently returned from Nashville where she was able to focus on writing and performing.

“I write from my own experiences,” Lawrenson said. “My music reflects my feelings. I felt unaccepted in high school,  and had to find my own place.” The Red Cross eventually asked her and writing partner Braiden Turner to become  official spokespersons for their anti-bullying campaign, RespectEd, and she was eager to help.

“Music is a strong venue for reaching out to people of all ages,” Lawrenson said. “It really is a universal language. I write about goals, and about pursing dreams, about the ups and downs of finding your way as an artist. On stage,” she added laughing, “I am a full body singer, very passionate, with lots of energy.”

With a new album, Somewhere to Go, produced by Keith Glass of Prairie Oysters, just out, Brea Lawrenson promises to be a memorable opening act for the upcoming concert.

Tickets for the Del Barber concert, October 29, at the St. Lawrence Acoustic Stage, with opening act Brea Lawrenson, are $15 in advance, $18 at the door. They are available at Strung Out Guitars, The Basket Case, at 613-543-2514 or at


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Lakeshore Drive United Church Fall Bazaar


Lakeshore Drive United Church served up another successful Fall Bazaar, Saturday, with huge crowds sitting down to a luncheon after shopping at the various tables which included a food sale, a silent auction, and a plant sale. All of the items were donated by members of the congregation. Event coordinator, Minnie MacKay was thrilled with the turnout and thankful to everyone who pitched in to help out. “They had a difficult time getting a convenor so I took it on. But, it’s been great. Everyone knows what they are doing.” 


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New Novel for Morrisburg resident, John Gleed


Have you ever dreamed about a world where you can live wherever you want, without regard to what you can afford? Have you wished that you could go into any store and just take what you wanted no matter what the price sticker said? This is the kind of world in which the subjects in the novel, “Earth’s New Beginning” find themselves…but this freedom came at a great cost!

This new novel by Morrisburg resident, John Gleed, will be available shortly as a paperback from Aventine Press. It is available now as an electronic book (ebook) on Amazon Kindle, Chapters/Indigo Kobo, Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble Nook, Sony eReader and more.

The story gives an account of how the human race came to an extraordinarily rapid and unexpected near-extinction early in the twenty-first century. No thermonuclear or biological war, pollution catastrophe, or any kind of human created disaster played a part in this downfall of modern man.

A highly infectious contagion kills most of the Earth’s population in less than three months. The Sleeping Death Contagion (SDC) virus causes the death of nearly every infected victim as they sleep, in less than four days. 

The nature of SDC was such that it could have resulted in the extinction of the human race. The high level of infectivity and the short time period to fatality had catastrophic results. Only a rare and random genetic immunity to the fatal effects of the virus prevented the total extinction. However, it leaves less than one in a hundred thousand survivors (0.001 per cent) – less than three thousand in North America.

The story follows the experiences of four different survivors in Canada (in the Morrisburg area), England, Kenya and the United States through the rapid spreading of the infection around the world.

It then follows their individual survival stories for the first nine months after the disease strikes.

John Gleed is a retired high-tech executive living in Morrisburg, Ontario, Canada on the Canadian shores of the St. Lawrence River, bordering New York State. He has always been interested in apocalyptic fiction about what might happen if a worldwide catastrophic disaster occurred. 

“Day of the Triffids” by John Wyndham, “No Blade of Grass” by John Christopher,“On the Beach” by Neville Shute and “The Stand” by Stephen King are among his favorite novels.

He was born and grew up in the small village of Dishforth in rural North Yorkshire, England. He emigrated to Canada in 1969. He spent most of his high tech career in Ottawa, Canada with Nortel and Systemhouse and he was a founder of the Canadian software company, JetForm Corporation. He retired in 2002, when the company was taken over by Adobe.

For more information, see