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Ghosts of Turkeys Past


The Ghosts of Turkeys Past
You know who you are.
The people who create homemade dressing from homemade bread you have carefully aged and spices you have lovingly preserved. 
The people whose Christmas turkeys seem to leap from the oven golden brown, beautifully basted, tender and juicy.
The people who make dozens of scrumptious cookies, and do them all from scratch and two weeks in advance. 
The people whose homes are tastefully and brightly decorated inside and out with lights, mistletoe and holly. Whose Christmas trees don’t fall over. Whose cards are all sent, whose stockings are joyfully hung and whose presents are all bought or made and already wrapped. 
Bah. Humbug.
I wish to point out that the rest of us real people are currently shifting into Christmas panic mode with only 11 days to go.
We’re the ones trampling seniors and small children in the Walmart aisles in an effort to snag the last Holiday Barbie or Remote Control Flying Shark (really!?). We’re the ones who didn’t pick up the Michel Bublé Christmas CD until it was sold out, and are now wondering if Uncle Louis will actually enjoy Burl Ives Sings Kiddie Pops. We’re the ones whose last minute cookie purchases say “best before War of 1812.” 
We’re the ones whose on-the-run Christmas tree purchase falls off the car roof. Twice. Who discover on December 24 that all last year’s festive tree ornaments were accidentally inserted into the trash compactor along with last year’s festive tree. 
We are the ones currently haunted in our dreams by large, blackened turkeys exclaiming “Why did you put me in an oven at 550 degrees an hour before dinner?” (And dressing is something you do before you go out.) 
But, truth be told, I wouldn’t have it any other way. The real joy of the Christmas season lies in laughter,  and in adventures and misadventures shared. It lies in family and friends and in helping neighbours.
Perfection is way over rated.                        


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Novice B Lions move into first


The South Dundas “Signature Homestyles” Novice B Lions continued their hot streak last week racking up two more wins to move into first place in the East Division. 

The Lions, who jumped over Brockville #2 and South Grenville in standings, won both their games with a 4-3 win over Kemptville #2 and 7-0 win over Athens.

On Sunday afternoon in Athens, the Lions jumped on the Aeros and controlled the play and game earning Brendan Shaver his first shut-out of the season. Although he wasn’t busy in the Lions pipes, Shaver made a couple of big saves to preserve the shut-out.

Ben Lapier led the Lions offensively with four goals. 

He started things off in the first period when he picked up a pass from Spencer Barclay and broke in on the Aeros goalie who made the save on his first shot. Lapier then tapped home the rebound.

Kayne McCadden scored on a Kolby Latulippe rebound as the right winger moved the puck up the side boards and got a shot on net. McCadden was there to shoot the rebound home and Nolan Henry picked up the secondary assist.

Lapier scored again in the second when Trent Rae was able to keep the puck alive at the blue line, where Owen Fetterly set in up by burying his backhand shot. 

Joshua Broad gave the Lions a 4-0 late in the second scoring into a wide open when Lapier’s shot was stopped. Broad, wide open in the crease, to scored his seventh of the year.

In the third, Latulippe scored and Ben Lapier netted another two for a the 7-0 Lions win. 

Cassidy Bilmer and McCadden picked up assists on Latulippe’s goals, while Owen Fetterly and Joshua Broad picked up two assists each on Lapier’s goals.

Wednesday night in Kemptville, the Lions held on to a 4-3 lead as the Panthers pressed for a tie late in the game.

The Lion’s built a 4-1 lead heading into the third period but two third period goals by the Panthers turned it into a nail bitter. 

Shaver was sharp in the Lion’s net as he stopped several Panther break aways, while Emytt Fetterly, on defense, kept the Panthers on the outside to eliminate scoring chances.

Ben Lapier opened the scoring on a broken play when Trent Rae iced the puck and the Panther goalie stopped it near the crease but did not get the whistle. When he went to play it away, Ben Lapier was standing right there to knock it in.

Kayne McCadden gave the Lions a 2-0 advantage, when he took the puck off a face-off at the blue line and weaved around two Panther defenders before scoring. 

The Panthers made it 2-, but Ben Lapier restored the two goal lead in the second during a Panther line change. Lapier took advantage of the line change to burst through the middle of the ice, earn a breakaway and score on a shot to the glove side.

Owen Fetterly rounded out the Lions scoring from Broad and Lapier who dug the puck out from along the left wing boards and found a wide open Fetterly in the slot.

The South Dundas “Signature Homestyles” Novice B Lions next home game is Sunday, December 18th at 1 p.m. against the Kemptville #1 Panthers.


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Canadian Tire Gives Generously to Local Charities again this Christmas


Once again, Canadian Tire in Morrisburg, with considerable help from employees, has donated $11,000 to six local charities. In choosing which charities will receive funds, Canadian Tire Associate Michel Proulx and staff representatives of the Employee Fund, “handpick charities that impact the area.” The funds were allocated as follows: the Dundas County Food Bank received $4,000; Jumpstart received $3,000; Naomi’s Family Resource Centre received $1,250; the South Dundas Christmas Exchange received $1,250; Winchester Hospital Foundation received $1,000; and, the Morrisburg Lions Club’s Angel Tree program received $500. Donna Quesnel, of the Dundas County Food Bank, told Proulx, “we really appreciate it.” Verna Léger, representing Naomi's Family Resource Centre, added, “this will be a great benefit to our centre.” As recipients departed, Proulx and his employees were greeted with appreciative thank you’s in addition to sincere wishes for a Merry Christmas.


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Lee Madden


st 20 years, Lee Madden passed away at the Winchester District Memorial Hospital on Saturday, December 3, 2011, following a battle with cancer.   He was 75.

Lee was born in Montreal on November 3, 1936, to his parents Alfred and Josephine Madden (nee Ryan).  He grew up in Montreal where he attended Loyola College (now Concordia University).   

After graduation he began teaching at Copper Cliff High School in Sudbury, and then at Central High School of Commerce in Toronto, before moving to Iroquois High School in 1962 which eventually became Seaway District High School.  

Lee’s booming voice and sense of humour added character to school life.  He was a conscientious, demanding teacher who exhibited a sincere concern for the overall growth of his students. 

Lee took students on field trips and coached hockey, football, softball and basketball up to and including his last year of teaching.  He was a strong supporter of extra-curricular activities such as the annual OAC trip to Stratford and university field trips claiming school was more than just books. 

He somehow found time to supervise the production of Seaway’s yearbook for many years. Lee enjoyed Seaway staff social events and initiated more than his share of good times with the staff.

Lee married fellow teacher Judy Ing in 1973. One of their highlights was the five years they spent teaching for the Department of National Defence in Lahr, Germany.  They made many good friends, traveled extensively and made many memories while in Lahr. 

Lee retired in 1993, following 33 years of teaching, 25 of which were spent at Seaway District High School.  

Following his retirement Lee and Judy enjoyed many trips, both in North America and abroad.  They enjoyed spending time at their chalet at Mont Tremblant, and Lee enjoyed playing a game of golf with his friends. His unique golf swing will continue to be a topic of conversation amongst his friends.  

Lee loved to have a good time and his unique personality and sense of humour made him a central figure at any social event he attended.  

His generous, fun loving nature will be dearly missed by all those who were fortunate enough to be able to enjoy a glass of wine or beer with him and call him their friend.  

Lee is survived by his wife Judy, his son Paul and his wife Marlene of Manotick, his granddaughters Jenny and Stephanie, his siblings Marilyn Chevalier and her husband Paul “Chuck” of Sun City Center, Florida and John Madden and his wife Barbara of Clifton Park, New York.  

He was predeceased by his sister and brother-in-law Betty and Jack Mulvey of Arnprior.  

He will be fondly remembered by his nieces and nephews and their families.  He will also be fondly remembered by his many colleagues and students from Copper Cliff High School, Central High School of Commerce in Toronto, Iroquois High School, Tagwi Secondary School, Seaway District High School, and Lahr Senior School.  

Friends called at the Marsden and McLaughlin Funeral Home, Williamsburg, on Thursday from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A private family funeral service was held on Friday, December 9th and inurnment of cremated remains was at St. Lawrence Valley Union Cemetery, Long Sault.  

For those wishing, donations to the Ottawa General Hospital Intensive Care Unit or the Winchester District Memorial Hospital Auxiliary would be gratefully acknowledged by the family.


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Perspectives by Rev. Clarence Witten


Ah, it’s Christmas. So much fun. We put up lights and decorations. There are all these concerts and parties to attend. There’s time off from school and work to enjoy family and friends. 

We remember this pudgy happy fellow from the North Pole who puts presents under our trees, iPhones, laptops, video games, jewelry and clothes. And we eat and eat and eat, turkey, chocolate, shortbread and all kinds of other special treats. 

All of us have our different Christmas traditions and different reasons why we (hopefully) enjoy Christmas.

But soon enough it’s all over. It was a good time. We enjoy the presents we got, though after a while they lose their shine. We had a good time with our family and friends, but all too soon they go back home. 

Finally we take down the lights and fancy decorations, and store them away for another year. Life goes on. 

Not much is different really, except that our Visa bill is higher than usual and we’ve put on a few pounds.

No, I don’t mean to be the Grinch who wants to steal Christmas. Not at all. I think all of this Christmas celebrating is great. 

But I also think if we’re to get the most out of Christmas, we ought to pay attention to the ‘other’ Christmas story. The one about the baby born in Bethlehem who came as God’s Son to be Saviour and King. It was all the way from heaven that he came. 

Not just to give us a few trinkets and toys, but to give presents like God’s love and forgiveness, new life, and eternal life in heaven. 

Costly presents these; they cost him his own life on the cross. And lasting presents they are as well. These gifts never lose their shine. The longer we have them, the more we appreciate them. They  meet our deepest needs and give us a joy found no where else.

So this Christmas, I would wish you all wonderful celebrations and great times. But I’d also encourage you to remember and to celebrate that other Christmas story. 

If you know this story, be sure it’s at the center of your celebrations. If you don’t quite know it, pull out a Bible and read it in Luke 2. Or check out a Christmas service at a local church.

Jesus came into this world because of his love for you. In that love he came to die for you to offer you gifts beyond your wildest dreams. 

Sorry if I’m biased, but it’s this Christmas story that beats all others hands down.

Pastor Clarence Witten



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Lions split games, keep the Rebels in sight


The Morrisburg Junior B Lions mixed it up with the Rideau Division this past weekend and when the play was finished they had picked up a pair of points.

In front of their home town fans on Friday night, the Lions put it together for a crushing 10-3 win over the Rideau division’s fifth place Brockville Tikis.

Sunday night, they were on the road to Athens to tackle the second place Aeros, but came out on the wrong side of a 5-2 final score.

“It was 3-2 at the end of the first period and we were coming on,” said Lions coach Thom Racine of the Athens game. “Then we gave up a soft goal early in the third period and we tanked. We just didn’t have anything in the third period which was sad because we had played so well in the first two periods.”

“We probably outplayed them in the first period, but we couldn’t score.”

The Aeros led 1-0 after the first period on a goal by J.P. Augustine.

They went up 3-0 in the second with goals added by Damian Levesque and Michael Byrne.

Then late in the frame, the Lions regrouped and came back for two to tighten the count to 3-2.

Chris Rutley got it rolling with help from Clarke Veenstra, and then with 25 second left on the clock Veenstra struck on the Lions power play.

Setting up the power-play counter were Michael Paquette and Marc Antoine Kamel.

It was less than two minutes into the third period when Kyle Mazerolle counted “the soft goal” and “we just died,” said Racine.

“We had a good intermission and felt good. Mik (goaltender Mikael Dion) was giving us good goaltending.”

As for Friday night’s win against the Brockville Tikis, Racine said, “It was a big night for us. Our power play was good and we got some short-handed goals. We weren’t really in any trouble all night.”

The Lions got it rolling with four consecutive first period goals. Less than two minutes in, Ryan Ward struck for goal number one from Sylvester Bzdyl and Alex Steingruber. Then Chris Rutley counted on the Lions power play at 7:46 from Sam Hodgson and Michel Lefebvre.

Two minutes later Brayden Girard (from Lance Hodgson) scored short handed for a 3-0 Lions advantage.

Bzdyl (from Matt Ouimet and Michael Keenan) finished off the Lions first period scoring, again while they were on the power play.

The Tikis got one against goaltender Mikael Dion, before the buzzer sounded to end the frame, from Jordan Sourwine.

Second period action was again dominated by the Lions with goals from Michael Poapst (from Rutley and Lefebvre), Michel Thurler (from Rutley and Lefebvre) and Ryan Ward (from Steingruber and Michael Keenan).

The Lions led 7-3 heading into the third where another three unanswered third period goals gave them the 10-3 win, their eighth of the season.

Scoring this period were Lefebvre (from Rutley and Poapst), Ward (from Michael Paquette and Steingruber) and Brayden Girard (from Kamel and Lance Hodgson).

The Lions out shot the Tikis 44-41 and scored two power play goals in eight opportunities.

Coming up this week, “we have a huge game against Akwesasne,” says Racine. “Akwesasne always plays tough in our barn.”

The Wolves are in town this Friday night, December 16. Game time is 8:30 p.m.

Then on Saturday night, the Lions are on the road to Westport to take on the Rideau Division’s first place Rideaus.

The Lions are currently in the St. Lawrence Division’s fifth spot, five points back of the Char-Lan Rebels. 

This past weekend the Rebels picked up a single point in an overtime loss (shoot out) to Westport. They lost 7-5 to Athens on Saturday night.

“We gained a point on the Rebels on the weekend to keep pace and are now six points ahead of Akwesasne,” says Racine.

Racine says that with school exams now over he is expecting to ice a full squad this weekend, a welcome change for the Lions.



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Wind opposition group asks for help


“It’s so confusing,” said South Dundas Deputy-Mayor Jim Locke, referring to the opposing sides of the wind farm debate.

Council has decided to postpone rulings concerning the requests made by the South Branch Wind Opposition Group at the December 6th South Dundas council meeting. The group won’t hear anything definite from council until January 2012.

Leslie Disheau, a spokesperson for the South Branch Wind Opposition Group, presented council with the requests after giving a very thorough, detailed presentation on why Prowind Canada’s plan to build the South Branch Wind Farm, consisting of about 14 wind turbines, should be stopped or, at the very least, roadblocked.

The project, which could begin as early as next spring, but no later than 2013, officially began in 2008.

Disheau began by outlining “South Branch Wind Opposition group’s points of objection to industrial wind turbines: they have not been proven safe to be sited close to communities – health concerns; they kill large numbers of birds and bats; they devalue non-participant properties; and, there is no reduction in cost to consumers for electricity rates.” 

In 2006, Nina Pierpont, MD, PhD testified before the New York State Legislature Energy Committee, saying “I’m an intelligent person and I support renewable energy. I am not here to shoot down wind energy, which probably has its place, though that place is not near people’s homes or near schools, hospitals, or other locations where people have to sleep or learn.”

Pierpont has a BA in Biology from Yale University, a PhD in Population Biology from Pinceton University, and an MD from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

In September of this year, Cathy Weston, Managing Director for Prowind Canada, told the Leader that there are only two houses in the area designated to be within 600 metres of a turbine. She explained that the rest of the turbines would be situated at least one kilometre from all existing homes.

At the council meeting, Disheau referred to studies that show inhabitants of houses that are less than a 1.4 kilometres from a turbine are subject to negative impacts on their sleeping habits and, in turn, their health.

According to Pierpont, “a setback of 1.5 miles from homes, schools, hospitals, and similar institutions will probably be adequate, in most NY State terrain, to protect people from the adverse health effects of industrial wind turbines.” For reference, 1.5 miles is equal to 2.4 kilometres.

On behalf of the South Branch Wind Opposition Group, Disheau made several requests of South Dundas council members.

The first request asked council to “pass a motion making a request to the Ministry of the Environment, and provincial officials that would place a moratorium on the construction of industrial wind turbine facilities before a third party independent epidemiological study (can be done) determining they pose no risks to human health, the environment, and property values.”

The second request suggested council “pass a by-law that requires wind turbine companies to have equipment and trained Emergency Response personnel to deal with high elevation fires and rescues for turbines over the 200 foot mark. And, council must amend the Emergency Preparedness Plan for South Dundas to deal with ice throw and flying debris from wind blade disintegration.”

In a third request, Disheau wanted council to “pass a by-law, according to the Municipal Act, restricting night time nuisance noise and vibration.” She explained that as per the Green Energy Act of Ontario, 10 p.m. is the stop time for wind turbine installations.

A fourth request suggested that “before any building permits are given to Prowind or any other developer, South Dundas council should conduct an open forum session for all township residents to have their questions and concerns answered.” 

This request is actually being addressed by Prowind Canada itself. Two public meetings, both scheduled for January, will follow a question and answer format. The meeting in South Dundas will be held at Matilda Hall in Dixon’s Corners on January 10th from 7 to 8:30 p.m.

In the South Branch Wind Opposition group’s final request, Disheau pleaded with council to “make an appeal to the Environmental Review Tribunal on the approval of the wind farm project.”

In response to Disheau’s informative and moving presentation, Mayor Steven Byvelds said, “we hear your concerns. I’ve added it to the discussion. There are some options in my mind as to where we can go with this,” however, “here we are less than six months away from people who have spent a lot of money to put something up. That presents challenges.”

During a later discussion, Byvelds presented his fellow council members with three options in response to the group’s presentation and requests: one, take time to review the information and make a decision at a later meeting; two, “take their information under advisement and monitor the progress of the wind farm and if there are any issues, deal with them according to the law; and three, “agree and do as they ask.”

Both Byvelds and Councillor Jim Graham seemed perplexed as to the last minute attention to the project. Graham asked, “It’s been four or five years and this is the first sign of opposition?”

Councillor Archie Mellan agreed, saying “they’re asking us to try to stop it when shovels” are about to dig in.

Byvelds seemed skeptical of the proof behind the group’s concerns, saying “I would find it really hard to believe that the province is relying on poor information.”

With that said, he addressed council, saying “I want to be fair to both sides. I advise council that you read both sides of the story.”

South Dundas council members unanimously chose option one, meaning they will take time to review, research, and  attend Prowind’s January 10th meeting, before responding to the opposition group’s requests. The requests will be revisited and decided upon at the council meeting following Prowind’s January 10th meeting.

Byvelds concluded the discussion on the topic, saying “I know I sound a little closed-minded, but we’ve had meetings with Prowind. They’ve spent a lot of money. We want to make sure we’re right on this.”

Contact information for both sides of the issue are: Prowind Canada via e-mail at; and, the South Branch Wind Opposition Group via e-mail at


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McDonell speaks out


News Release – Dec 5, 2011

QUEEN’S PARK – Stormont, Dundas, and South Glengarry MPP, Jim McDonell blasted the McGuinty government for playing politics with the Eastern Ontario Development Fund (EODF) by linking its future to an unknown program for Southwestern Ontario.

Jim McDonell expressed shock that the government has introduced a bill it knows will put the EODF in jeopardy.

To extend the EODF, the government’s bill forces MPPs to also vote for a new program in Southwestern Ontario that’s surrounded in serious questions – including how it will be funded and what accountability measures it will have.

“We don’t need this bill for the EODF program. The program exists already and it has the support of Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak and our caucus,” stressed Jim McDonell.  The fund was created to address the unique challenges of Eastern Ontario, challenges that still need to be addressed. 

“However, we won’t support a bill bundling it with a program that has so many unknowns. The McGuinty government is asking for a blank cheque and we all know that would be a costly disaster for taxpayers.”

In fact, Jim McDonell noted that with an estimated $28 million still left in the fund after more than three years, the EODF could be extended through March of 2013 with no new government spending.

Jim McDonell said the government is using the threat of cancelling the EODF as a tactic to force the Legislature into helping Premier McGuinty keep an election promise to establish the Southwestern Ontario fund.

It’s a promise that comes with an $80-million price tag at a time when the province has a deficit of $16 billion.

“Rather than debate the merits of the new Southwestern Ontario program, they’re pitting regions against each other with this bill,” explained Jim McDonell. “It’s unfortunate that, at a time of economic turmoil in this province, the McGuinty government would choose to play political games instead of focusing on job creation.”

Jim McDonell called on Economic Development and Innovation Minister Brad Duguid to do the right thing and separate the two programs and bring together Eastern Ontario MPPs to review the EODF before it expires in March, 2012.

“Let’s stop playing partisan politics and do what Ontarians expect MPPs to do in this minority legislature, which is to work across party lines to fix the serious challenges facing the province today,” urged Jim McDonell.


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McDonell talks Ontario energy


News Release – Dec 5, 2011

QUEEN’S PARK – “We can no longer afford to ignore the energy crises in Ontario.  This is a self inflicted problem and it is time to listen to the people,” said Jim McDonell, MPP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry.

In his report, Auditor General Jim McCarter revealed Dalton McGuinty ignored repeated warnings from his own energy advisors that his approach to renewables – such as the FIT program and Samsung deal – is too expensive and would increase energy bills for job creators and families alike. 

The auditor also confirmed that consumers have paid more than enough to cover the $7.8-billion Debt Retirement Charge (DRC), but the government continues to charge it on hydro bills while keeping the remaining debt a secret. 

Finally, over the last six years, Ontario consumers paid $1.8 billion to New York and Quebec to take away the province’s excess energy. 


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Specialized hearing services at WDMH


News Release – Dec 5, 2011

WILLIAMSBURG – Winchester District Memorial Hospital (WDMH) is pleased to welcome Robillard Hearing Centre, as one of our newest healthcare partners providing care close to home.

“Patients told us that we should offer a clinic at WDMH,” explains Sophie Robillard, a board-certified hearing aid specialist who leads the clinic. “Hearing needs are increasing and we’re pleased to be here to respond to local communities.”

“We are happy to have Robillard on-site offering specialized hearing services,” adds Cholly Boland, WDMH CEO. “Our goal is to bring together services that our local communities need and hearing support is definitely one of them.”

Robillard Hearing Centres are family owned and operated and have been serving the Eastern Ontario region for more than 50 years. Qualified hearing healthcare professionals evaluate hearing issues and provide remedial recommendations to family doctors for hearing instruments, assistive hearing devices. They can also fill any hearing instrument prescription.

The clinic is offered on Wednesdays and is located in the Dillabough Building. To make an appointment, please call 1-877-498-3301 or visit

If you would like to provide comments or suggestions about hospital services, contact Cholly Boland, President and CEO, Winchester District Memorial Hospital at 613.774.1049 or by email at