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Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

Presence, not presents

It’s Easy Being Green

By Julia Taylor

            In Grade 6 (Mrs. Somers’ class, Langton Public School), I won an essay-writing contest with The Fenelon Gazette about the meaning of Christmas.

            I wrote about giving instead of receiving (probably trying to score brownie points to get more presents). If only I’d known back then all the things I know now.

Dear 11 year old Julia,

            It’s me, Julia—the smarter, older you from the future. I’m writing to you to tell you that I do not remember one single gift I received at Christmas, or any gift I gave. Nor do the people that received these gifts remember what I gave them.

            What I do remember is how my mom let me decorate the house and the tree, and even her restaurant. I remember fondue on Christmas Eve and family meals around my grandparents’ tables.

            I remember having the whole week to hang out with my brothers and staying in our pajamas for all of Christmas day.

            I’m telling you this because Christmas is not about giving or receiving, it is about time. Time spent with people that you love.

            If I could trade in every Barbie and Ninja Turtle doll that I got, I would trade it for more time with my family to make more memories.

            So when you write your meaning of Christmas essay and your letter to Santa ask for presence not presents.

            Ask for experiences. Memories made with people last much longer than the flashy blinky thing that you liked for 20 minutes.

With Love,


            Show your love to your family and this beautiful earth by giving presence, not presents.

            Merry Christmas, Kawartha Lakes.

Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

Lock gates ahoy

            Caygeonites wondering about all the activity at Lock 32 this fall will be happy to know the lock is getting a facelift—also known as maintenance and rehabilitation.

            Here you see one of the massive

Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

The Saddened Serpent

Minaajim: Good Stories from Curve Lake First Nation

As told by Doug Williams to Julie Kapyrka

            Down on Hiawatha First Nation, on the north shore of Rice Lake, is the place called the Serpent Mounds. Our people say the ancient ones made these sacred mounds of piled earth to house their dead.

            The mounds are in the shape of a snake, and this fits the

Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

Rice is nation-to-nation in lake management

By Pat Warren

            Dave Mowat, who works with Scugog Island First Nation, told the Community Advisory Panel for Lake Management Planning recently that resolving the wild rice issue is strictly between the federal government (Trent Severn Waterway) and the Williams Treaties First Nations (WTFN).

            It lies beyond the

Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

Save the turtles

            The Kawartha Turtle Trauma Centre (KTTC) is encouraging all turtle lovers to give the gift of warmth and care this holiday season.

            The organization is asking holiday shoppers to help

Friday, 11 December 2015 00:00

STORM honours two of our own

            Two Kawartha Lakers were among 29 people honoured this fall by the Save Oak Ridges Moraine (STORM) coalition for their dedication to the moraine, one of our region’s most significant geographic and ecological features.

            Our first local honouree,

Wednesday, 14 October 2015 00:00

It’s Easy Being Green—No butts

By Julia Taylor (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

            My whole life I have enjoyed the lakes—the old “L” dock at the Fenelon beach, boating, and wakeboarding, fishing, and kayaking. Snowmobiling and ice fishing in the winter, soaking in the

Wednesday, 14 October 2015 00:00

Let us be mindful

            Altamae Thomas Eberlee, the daughter of long-time village doctor, W.D. Thomas, brought in her late father’s 1980 book, The Hub of the Kawarthas, with the request that we reprint this concluding paragraph from the book.

            We’re happy to do so, with the additional reminder that

Wednesday, 14 October 2015 00:00

Made-to-order day raises $8,000 for Boyd Island

By Glenna Burns

            Sunday, Oct. 11 was a “made-to-order’” day for the Boyd Island Boat Cruise event held to raise funds for the preservation of Boyd Island.

            Over $8,000 was raised to support the

By Ruth McIsaac, President, Bobcaygeon and District Horticultural Society

            Every year I’m amazed at how many outstanding gardens—small or large—Bobcaygeon has to share.

            They’re all unique, with hidden nooks and crannies for quiet reflection. Flashes of colour from

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