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Tuesday, October 15, 2019

One of last Ontario places to see the changing leaves is across the Niagara Peninsula

   One-Tank Trip for Oct. 12/19

   (c) By Jim Fox

   Niagara is one of the final places in Ontario to view the fall kaleidoscope of colours.
   The region, lying between Lake Erie to the south and Lake Ontario to the north, is in the moderate climate zone.
   That means there’s still time to take in the spectacle of the changing season.
The colourful changing season has started along the Niagara Parkway at Niagara Falls. (Jim Fox photo)
   Niagara offers some special spots to see fall colours on jet boats, a Ferris wheel and at a conservation area.
   This is where you’ll find the Niagara Parkway curving along the Niagara River separating Canada and the United States.
   It was called “the prettiest Sunday drive in the world” by the late British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill.

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Opening historic doors and places in Dutton Dunwich

   One-Tank Trip for Oct. 5/19

   (c) By Jim Fox

   City slickers can discover what small-town living is all about as Doors Open takes place in Dutton Dunwich.
   The community between London and St. Thomas with 3,800 people is one of the final two stops in this season’s Ontario Heritage Trust program.
   Concluding this month with five communities, the cultural tourism initiative opens the doors, gates and courtyards of “the most unique and fascinating cultural sites.”
St. Peter’s Anglican Church built in 1827 is one of the oldest churches in southwestern Ontario.
    It highlights exceptional spaces of heritage structures “reflected, valued and conserved for future generations.”
   Dutton Dunwich opens the doors of 10 buildings and historic sites with free tours on Oct. 20 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
   It’s called a “unique opportunity to explore and enjoy hidden and interesting places,” by Deputy Mayor Mike Hentz.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Doors Open St. Thomas is back and a little bit spooky

St. Thomas, ON - From April to October, explore Ontario’s heritage treasures at free public events across the province. Satisfy your curiosity and get behind normally closed doors to experience intriguing interiors, where you will be inspired by rare and exceptional materials, craftsmanship and design. From historical houses to modern marvels of construction, Doors Open Ontario has something for everyone - All Free of Charge.

Leaf peeper guide to Ontario Parks; Algonquin and more . . .

   One-Tank Trip for Sept. 21/19

    (c) By Jim Fox

   Just a “heads up” while taking in the kaleidoscope of fall colours in Ontario Parks.
   You don’t have to encounter Highway 401-like traffic while in the woods marvelling over the vibrant fall spectacle.
   Visitors can find themselves shut out of Algonquin Provincial Park near Huntsville because of traffic gridlock on Highway 60 that passes through.
   “The secret is out,” said Jeff Brown of Ontario Parks about Algonquin’s fall colours that are “beautiful and it’s one of our busiest parks in the fall.”
Many Ontario Parks feature blue water and colourful leaves in the fall. (Jim Fox photo)
    Weekends get “extremely crowded, especially at the West Gate,” he said, adding: “Sometimes, it completely fills up and visitors are unable to enter.”
   Leaf-peepers need not despair as “Algonquin is far from the only park in Ontario where visitors can experience incredible fall colours,” he said.

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Detroit auto show gears up for switch to June; Dancing in the streets for Motown's 60th anniversary

   One-Tank Trip for Sept.14/19

  (c) By Jim Fox

   The wheels are in motion as the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit rolls out in June next year from the dead of winter in January.
   “Moving the show to June opens up a whole new world of possibilities to explore both the show and beautiful downtown,” organizers say.
Putting on the glitz at gala. (Barbara Fox photo)

   With more to experience, it will be “an event like the automotive world has never seen before.”
   As a teaser, they say “witnessing the premiere of a newly designed vehicle is one thing but the opportunity to take it for a spin is another.”
   The nine-day show attracts about 800,000 people to view “world-wide vehicle reveals “and some 750 vehicles over nine days at the Cobo Center.
   Detroit’s “party of the year,” the Auto Show Gala Charity Preview also faces a “transformation with an evolution of its own.”
   A bid to introduce “more swagger and creative black tie” could mark an end to the glam experience.
    With summertime temperatures, more daylight and an expanded auto show campus – including Cobo and Hart Plaza – organizers they are looking at options for gala event on June 12.
    These include adding “various levels of involvement to welcome new generations to the preview,” said NAIAS executive director Rod Alberts.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Algonquin Provincial Park's fall spectacular "secret" is out; less busy parks available for leaf peepers

Ontario Parks photo

 Algonquin Provincial Park’s fall colours are beautiful, but the secret is out – it’s one of our busiest parks in the fall.  Fall weekends get extremely crowded, especially at the West Gate. Sometimes, it completely fills up and visitors are unable to enter.
However, Algonquin is far from the only park in Ontario where visitors can experience incredible fall colours. They can follow the fall colour progression using our Fall Colour Report (already the earliest signs of fall colours are coming in). Many have extended fall seasons. Fall colours appear first in the north and then move south as the weather changes.

These parks are awe-inspiring in the Autumn, and help visitors escape the traffic and crowds of our busiest locations:
 Lake Superior Provincial Park (Northwest zone)

Amber reds, warm yellows, and oranges as brilliant as a nighttime campfire – there are few places with fall colours as memorable as Lake Superior Provincial Park.

Lake Superior Provincial Park has unparalleled hiking trails at any time of the year. The fall colours make them just that much better! And as a bonus: the dropping temperatures mean a comfortable hike with fewer insects.
Ontario Parks photo

The vibrant reds and oranges are found in the south of the park, and the yellows and greens in the north. The Awausee Trail should be on everyone’s list during the peak colour period. This demanding but rewarding trail takes visitors past a series of lookouts for a bird’s-eye view of the Agawa Valley and Lake Superior.
In 2018, Lake Superior Provincial Park was officially designated as a Dark Sky Preserve by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. That means the park is essentially free from light pollution, giving unhindered views of the night sky.

What better time to experience this than in the fall when the nights get longer? Gaze upwards and you’ll see a dome of stars above and, if you’re lucky, the dancing of the Northern Lights. The fall has plenty of cool, clear nights on which nature’s greatest light show might make an appearance.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Boxcar mural unveiling at St. Thomas Culture Days

(News Release)

St. Thomas ON, September 6 2019:  Railway City Tourism is excited to announce the official unveiling of the first big step for promotion of the arts and the enhancement of public spaces in St. Thomas. 

Kicking off a St. Thomas-wide street art project are the boxcar murals. These boxcars are currently located at the Elgin County Railway Museum.
Photo by Grayden Laing
Four artists with ties to the area have completed the murals. Each mural is as unique as each artist and highlights their personal experience and relationship with St. Thomas. 
The murals will be officially unveiled during the nation-wide Culture Days celebration, September 28th downtown St. Thomas at Moore and Talbot Street. They are available for viewing all day in this location starting at 9am, and speeches and a very special announcement will be made at 4:30pm. 

Orillia is seeking input on Stephen Leacock Museum master plan

(News Release)

(Sept. 9, 2019) – The City of Orillia is developing a master plan for the Stephen Leacock Museum National Historic Site and is looking for input to help create a bold new vision for the museum beyond 2020.
Orillia residents and out-of-town visitors are invited to complete the community survey available at the museum during regular operating hours and online at leacockmuseum.com. Even if you have never visited the museum or it has been a while, you are encouraged to respond.
Leacock Museum (Jim Fox photo)
 “Orillians helped shape the legacy Stephen Leacock left in his whimsical Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town in 1912 and can do so once again through the museum’s master plan community survey. This is your opportunity to help shape the future direction of the Leacock Museum,” said Mayor Steve Clarke.

Andrea Martin to receive Stratford Festival’s Legacy Award


Star-studded gala slated for September 23
features Martin Short, Paul Shaffer and Victor Garber
September 10, 2019… Award-winning actor-singer-comedian Andrea Martin is being celebrated by the Stratford Festival as the 2019 Legacy Award recipient, at a gala to be held on September 23 at Toronto’s Four Seasons Hotel.
“I’ve been a huge fan of Andrea’s for decades,” says Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino. “Her work on SCTV had me in stitches, so when I saw her live in Candide here at the Stratford Festival, I was ready to worship at her altar, and this goddess didn’t disappoint. Her vitality and enormous talent have made her an icon. It is a great pleasure to say thank you and celebrate her and her intersection with Stratford.” 
Martin has hundreds of stage, television and film credits, including a spectacular season at the Stratford Festival in 1978, when she played Sibyl Chase in Noël Coward’s Private Lives, with Brian Bedford as Elyot Chase, Nicholas Pennell as Victor Prynne and Maggie Smith (the 2012 Legacy Award winner) as Amanda Prynne.

T-minus 4 days until the 7th annual Cobble Beach Concours d'Elegance (2019)

 (News Release)

Beautiful and rarely seen automobiles will herald in a new tradition of distinction and elegance on the shores of Georgian Bay, 10 minutes north of Owen Sound.

On September 14 & 15, 2019, Cobble Beach Golf Resort Community presents the 7th annual Cobble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

On Saturday September 14, 2019 the participant tour will take place in Grey County.

Sunday, September 15, 2019 the Concours will be held on the 18th fairway of Cobble Beach. This extraordinary bayside course will play host to a rich assortment of international automobiles and distinguished guests.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Get your motor runnin'; Head out on the highway; Lookin' for adventure on Friday the 13th down Port Dover way

   One-Tank Trip for Sept. 7/19

   () By Jim Fox

   Motorcyclists are revving up the engines of their “bad motor scooters” and getting ready to head off into the sunset for Port Dover.
   Anticipation is building for another record-breaking year for this month’s Friday the 13th frolics by celebrating cycle fans in the Lake Erie town.
   It’s been quite a while coming as the last Friday the 13th was in July of last year but another one will roll around for the more hardy cyclists in December and then next March.
   The event in the picturesque beach town is known as “the biggest single-day motorcycle event in the world.”
The bike invasion of Port Dover is on.
    Preparations are well under way as organizers are “expecting a very large turnout as fall is a favourite time of the year for motorcycle travel,” said Ted Willey of Norfolk Tourism and Economic Development.
   The festivities have grown significantly over the years since they began in 1981.
   The last one was the largest so far, with estimates of more than 200,000 visitors to Port Dover that has only 6,100 year-round residents.
   “There won’t be another summer/fall event until 2021, so we expect huge crowds, especially if the weather cooperates,” Willey added.

   Beach town lure
Bikes and the beach lure visitors to Port Dover. (Jim Fox photo)
    The town, with its beach, pier and historic lighthouse, has been attracting tourists since the mid-1800s and you’ll see bikes cruising the streets all throughout the warm-weather months.