Archive for the ‘Our Heritage’ Category

Respect is Vital – Lessons from Mary Henderson

April 5, 2018

Written by Lois Densmore

21463406_1412013265514177_3194521408335269248_nWhen I first moved to Fenelon Falls in 2013, I met Mary Henderson at the Legion. As we grew to know each other better I learned that respect was what Mary lived by, and expected from her friends and colleagues.

Mary grew up as the oldest of seven children, and at age 14 she had her first job working as a shampoo girl in the local hairdresser, and she later graduated as a hairstylist from Danforth Tech in 1962. Mary worked full time until her first child was born, and then she continued working part-time as a stylist, which was a great job for a young mother.

In 1981, Mary became the Customer Service Manager for the Gage Distribution/Macmillan Publishing House, a major textbook publisher in Canada at the time.

By 1991, Mary had been spending time in Fenelon with her three children at the trailer park on Louisa Street in the summertime.  She became active with the Legion and with the Trentside Baptist church. Mary eventually chose to move to Fenelon in 1992, and she has stayed active with the Legion and church ever since.

When I asked Mary what she considered to be a significant achievement in her life, she replied immediately: Legion Work, Catering, Community, Reunion Choir, and Funeral Teas. Coordinating these events gives Mary great satisfaction, and the people around her rely on her for information, directions, and suggestions.

12805650_954602817921893_5622199910834651055_nMary is a real go-getter and an avid quilter;  Mary once made a quilted wall hanging for the Legion, by herself and presented it to the Legion for display. Last year, Mary submitted a quilt to the fair, and won the Fenelon Fair Viewer’s Choice Award! She was also awarded a Service Award as thanks for her time and efforts working with the Legion.

Mary is a great addition to the Fenelon Falls community: he can be found at all the craft fairs, (I love her Strawberry Rhubarb jam!) and Legion events.  And of course, the Fenelon Falls Fall Fair is Mary’s home away from home in the autumn months.

I very much look forward to joining Mary for Square Dancing and am confident that we will have a great time. Hope to see you there, too!


Send us your stories! If you know someone who should be profiled in the Town Crier, email us at to be a contributor.

Bruno, Julie, and Miss Kawartha

March 22, 2018

Written by Dana Deathe

As previously published in the Town Crier, award-winning landscape designers and artists Bruno Cantieni and Julie Moore have recently moved to Fenelon Falls. They just took part in Canada Blooms 2018, a gardening and landscape exhibition in Toronto where they created a feature garden, “Midnight in Paris,” which displayed Bruno’s sculpture inspired by the area called “Miss Kawartha.” Here is a follow-up interview with Bruno and Julie.

Town Crier: How did the Canada Blooms 2018 festival go?

Julie and Bruno: Canada Blooms 2018 was beautiful and  extremely well received this year. The 1200 sq.ft.  show garden Midnight in Paris by our design firm, Modern Landscape Designers, did not go unnoticed. Partner and Lead Designer Julie Moore won the “Tony Di Giovanni Award – Judges Choice Garden of the Year 2018” in addition to the “S.G. Ulbright Award – Outstanding Medium Size Garden. These are two most prestigious award so we were all delighted.


Miss Kawartha at Canada Blooms. Photo: Julie Moore

TC: How was Midnight in Paris received by guests?

J&B: When people stepped into the garden you could tell they felt “la joie de vivre’’ while walking the French allée of the garden Midnight in Paris expressing joy and curiosity. Over the 10 days of the show we witnessed the power of our design because couples would make time to sit around the water feature while the movie soundtrack was playing in the background, and they would start kissing like you’d see in the streets of Paris in the spring! Others would romantically start dancing. Then, the magic décor in the greenhouse styled by Robbin Burrows (owner of Gilstorf & Gray in Bobcaygeon) inspired and transported all visitors to the 1920s. Another prime element of our success was using Techo-Bloc hard-scape products because of its special tones and textures which provided a warm contemporary look.

TC: What impact did your statue, Miss Kawartha, have on the feature garden space?

J&B: Miss Kawartha was extremely well-received as she was a gorgeous focal point of the garden. She attracted the attention of children and adults and she was the most photographed feature of the Midnight in Paris garden. The funny part is that  people would pose like Miss Kawartha while having their picture taken with this new bronze celebrity! She did a marvelous job promoting the Kawartha region and the Victoria County Studio Tour. The success was so grand that the artist [Bruno Cantieni] is already working on relatives of Miss Kawartha like he is creatively sculpting Miss Verulam and drawing her sister Miss Sturgeon! I am sure Mrs Fenelon Falls is not far behind.

TC: Hah! I love it, you will have a whole family. How did Miss Kawartha fare as a conversation-starter for people who are connected to the area?

J&B: Our team was delighted to see how many people from our spectacular region took the time to visit us at Canada Blooms in downtown Toronto and expressed their enthusiasm about Miss Kawartha. Kawartha Lakes people love nature and art and so do we! The magnitude of the project was impressive and Miss Kawartha was the queen!


Julie Moore at Canada Blooms. Photo: Bruno Cantieni

TC: You said previously that you chose to move to Fenelon Falls in order to live in a place where you can both focus on your creative pursuits. Has that choice been effective in letting you focus in on creative projects?

J&B: A big YES! The air is pure here and the sky is blue like no other place on the planet. The people have a sense of community that touched our hearts since the beginning last September. Nature is a very healing and powerful inspiration that stimulates creativity. We are very excited about the new landscape season coming up and we hope to create fabulous contemporary landscape designs in our region.

TC: What are some of the biggest differences between being an artist in a big city vs in a more rural, smaller town?

J&B: For us a rural environment is healthier from a nature perspective. In our small town people are more authentic and are more supportive of their artistic community. This fraternity is precious for artists because we are sensitive beings. Here we feel safe, happy and so inspired.

TC: Do you have any upcoming local projects planned? What will you guys be working on next?

J&B: This week we are recuperating from this wonderful journey and as per next week we are planning to rebuild our Midnight in Paris world class garden on our property this spring. Braeside Estate – Gardens & Sculptures will then be opened a couple times per year to the public every year. The big opening will be the weekend of Sept 29-30 and Oct. 6-7 2018 during the Victoria County Studio Tour!

TC: Fantastic! Thanks so much for talking to the Town Crier.

Christine Buchanan: Local Hero

March 7, 2018

Written by Geoff Coleman

The Canadian Red Cross recognizes November as CPR awareness month, and on November 6, Fenelon Falls resident, Christine Buchanan took that designation to heart. Or, more specifically, to John Morrow’s heart.

At his home, and experiencing chest pain and shortness of breath, the 79-year old Morrow phoned his wife Linda, asking her to leave work and drive him to the hospital. By the time she made the 5-minute ride to their house, he had suffered a heart attack and collapsed at the end of their driveway. Like most of us, Linda and others present were not trained in emergency first aid. A neighbour on the scene had started chest compressions with the help of 911 operator, but Morrow was not responding.

By all accounts, John was dead when Christine Buchanan drove past the scene seconds later. Having had training in CPR, and seeing the severity of the situation, she parked on the shoulder and took over the resuscitation efforts.
“He was not breathing, I couldn’t find a pulse, and his skin was purple,” recalls Buchanan. However, after a few minutes of chest compressions, he drew a breath. He was not able to keep breathing but encouraged by that one breath, Ms. Buchanan continued administering CPR and minutes later he was taking shallow and laboured breaths.


John Morrow and Christine Buchanan

At that time the ambulance pulled up, and paramedics applied a defibrillator while Buchanan continued the chest compressions. In moments Morrow had vital signs and was breathing on his own when he was loaded into the ambulance.

John’s wife, Linda likes to call Ms. Buchanan his guardian angel, and without her efforts, the situation would have been very different. At the very least, even if paramedics had revived him when they arrived, there would certainly have been damage to Morrow’s brain.

Ms. Buchanan first received training through her employer about ten years ago and was recertified in each of the ensuing seven years. She followed that up on her own dime three years ago with CPR/AED and First Aid courses. Prior to this event, she had never put her training to work, but she credits the comprehensive nature of the courses she took for allowing her to act decisively and effectively.

“CPR training teaches you to react, so that’s what I did. I saw a small group of people at the end of the driveway as I approached the scene and that just looked odd. Then I saw someone’s feet…not standing. So that really caught my eye”, explained Ms. Buchanan with a wry laugh. “When I saw his skin tone I knew that something was really wrong. I asked if they needed my help, and the years of training just came to the surface.”

Events like this underscore the value of CPR training specifically and first aid training in general. If, like Linda Morrow, this incident inspires you to take a CPR course, there are a number running in this area.

Red Cross is advertising a CPR/AED (automated external defibrillation) course on April 7 and April 26, and St. John’s Ambulance offers CPR-A with AED on March 24, April 10 and 14, and May 5 and 15. CPR-A teaches CPR techniques to be used on adult casualties and is suited to workplaces/household that don’t include children. All courses are held in Lindsay. For more information visit the St. John’s Ambulance site for Lindsay and Kawartha Lakes.

Restoration Has Begun on Historic Fenelon Marquee

February 22, 2018

We are so very happy to announce that restoration has begun on the sign. So, we are officially “Under Re-Construction”! Thank you to George Lawrence and Brian Patterson for managing this stage of our project. We will bring you updates as the guys start tunnamed (1)o make progress.

The Fenelon Theatre Marquee Group has been working hard to raise funds. Soliciting donations and applying for grants so that we can restore the Marquee and are just about at the halfway mark to our goal. If you haven’t donated yet but want to, click here to print out the donation form and mail it, along with your cheque to the Maryboro Lodge (Fenelon Theatre Marquee), P.O. Box 179, 50 Oak Street, Fenelon Falls, ON K0M 1N0. Every little bit helps us bring back the lights!!

The committee popped up at the Barn & Bunkie sale last December. It was a blast networking, raising funds and collecting donations, and remembering good times at the Fenelon Theatre. We have raised over $5000 in past few months – thanks to Grr8 Finds Market, Randy Meredith, Norm Howard, Pineridge Landscaping, The Rotary Club, and a very special Memorial to John Livingstone.

If you feel like you missed out, please stop into Grr8 Finds Market on Colborne Street, Fenelon Falls to pick up your limited edition t-shirts, sweaters, and other swag.

Stay tuned for announcements about our next pop-up shops (hint : watch for us at the Kawartha Lakes Country Living Show, at the Fenelon Falls Community Centre on Friday, April 27 – Sunday, April 29, 2018.

-The Fenelon Theatre Marquee Group

The Country Cupboard Goes Green with New Owner Julia Taylor

February 7, 2018
Julia and Carson at the Country Cupboard

Julia and Carson at the Country Cupboard

Julia Taylor grew up right here in Fenelon. She remembers when they built Langton Public School, and that as a young girl she contributed a $2 dollar bill to the time capsule they created to mark the school’s opening. While she moved away in her early teens, she remained fond of the small community-focused village of Fenelon Falls.

When Julia and her husband were choosing a place to live and raise their family, Fenelon was the obvious choice and they returned in 2007 simply because, as Julia puts it, “Fenelon is our favourite town in Kawartha Lakes.” Julia was drawn to living in Fenelon because of our naturally scenic features: the falls, the locks, the beach, and the green spaces that have remained unchanged since her childhood.

During her years as a stay-at-home Mom, Julia got active with volunteering in the community and quickly saw that when she chose to get back to work, she wanted to bring together her passions for the environment, entrepreneurship, and healthy living in a way that gives back to the community. Julia recently saw the opportunity for her to do just that when she purchased the Country Cupboard on May Street.

Julia plans for the Country Cupboard to continue to be the place in town to go for “knowledgeable and informative help with vitamins and supplements” thanks of course to Carson, who will be staying on as Julia’s “right-hand man and supplements expert.” In addition, Julia will be turning the Country Cupboard into the place to go for “fresh quality pantry staples,” offering a 10% discount for customers who bring in their own containers as an eco-friendly shopping choice.

20180129_182205 (1)Finally, Julia will also bring to the shop a wealth of information on “all things whole-food, plant-based, and chemical-free home and body care.” And don’t worry – the famous frozen yogurt isn’t going anywhere, and she is also planning to offer a dairy-free option soon. Yum!

You can follow The Country Cupboard on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Stop in to the Country Cupboard soon to say hi to Julia and chat with her about living green!


Welcome Home, Anna Radey

January 25, 2018

Anna Radey may have grown up attending school in Toronto, but her family has had deep roots in Fenelon Falls for many generations. In fact, Anna’s recent choice to relocate to Fenelon permanently has made her the 5th generation in her family to live in Kawartha Lakes.

Anna’s Grandfather ran the original Canadian Tire in Fenelon Falls, and her dad Terry was a well-respected and longstanding businessman in the community. Raised in Lindsay, Terry started the iconic ice cream shop Slices n’ Scoops 22 years ago and Anna has been running the shop every summer season since 2007.


Anna’s mom Sandy hails from Indianapolis and worked as a real estate agent for 25 years. While growing up in Toronto, Terry and Sandy demonstrated for Anna the importance of giving back to the community and fostering positive working relationships with the residents and businesses that surround you.

It is clear that Anna still carries those lessons today, as you can see the many ways she has already started to get involved with the community of Fenelon Falls: as the new Events Director on the board for the Fenelon Falls and District Chamber of Commerce, Anna will be helping us enjoy classic Fenelon events like Midnight Madness and may even bring an exciting new event to town this summer. Anna’s expertise in planning this year’s Country Living Show is also greatly appreciated.

Anna has embraced winter in Fenelon by taking up curling with a team of ragtag misfits who are really enjoying learning the sport and enjoying the friendly atmosphere of the curling club on Tuesday nights even more. Be sure to stop in for a slice and/or scoop this summer and say hi to Anna!

Greetings from Dana, New Editor of the Town Crier

January 10, 2018

Meet your new editor, Dana Deathe

Greetings and Salutations!

the book ladyYou may have met me in town before, and you may know that I am the new owner of The Book Lady in Fenelon. You may know that I spent my whole life cottaging here, and that I moved here from Calgary last spring. It’s safe to say that I think Fenelon Falls is a pretty special place.

You may not know, though, that my family has a long history in this area; my great-grandfather was a minister here, and he built the cottage that I grew up enjoying. On the other side of my family, my grandparents spent their summers on Sturgeon Lake where my mother grew up before she and my dad committed, perhaps equally, to each other and to the shores of Cameron Lake.

I am so excited to be a part of this community and when I arrived I immediately started looking for ways to get involved. I’m thrilled to be the Communications Director on the board of the Fenelon Falls & District Chamber of Commerce, and now I have the pleasure of communicating directly with you via this fantastic newsletter.

If you’d ever like to chat with me about anything (especially books, I love talking about books!) please do drop by the bookstore one day soon.


Until next time!

Dana Deathe


Helpful Tips from Santa’s Elves!

November 22, 2017

SantaDay General Slider 2017

how best to enjoy your Santa Day

On Saturday, November 25, 2017, Santa Day will effectively take over our village, to the delight of all! We’ve been consulting with Santa’s Elves and here are a few tips and tricks to make your visit to Fenelon Falls on Santa Day the best it can be.

Santa Day Headquarters – Video Image, 10 Colborne St.
(near the woodcarver by Stokes on Trent)

Cartoon by Laurie Rockman, Kawartha Lakes;

Video Image on Colborne Street will house the main hub of Santa Day organization, along with the Lost and Found. It is great relief to know there is one spot to go to if you have any questions, need any assistance, or if you have misplaced that incredible scarf that you were positive you just had!

Parking is not an issue if you plan ahead. Take note of the signs posted about the village before you leave your car, especially the No Parking signs and times posted on the light poles on the main street. There are public parking lots behind Colborne St. north of the locks, on either side, just behind the stores on the street, accessible from Colborne and Francis Streets. There is also the old arena by the Curling Club that is available, as well as the parking lots by the beach and Garnet Graham Park.

Road closures are planned as usual. The city’s new website made it easy to find the notice…Water St. will be closed from 9.00 am to 7.00 pm for the daytime activities and Lindsay St. – Colborne St. will be closed from 4.30 pm to 6.30 pm for the parade. The Parade route runs through the heart of the village. Cars will be cleared from the Lindsay/Colborne corridor starting around 4 PM and the road will not reopen until the parade and fireworks finish. If you are needing to make a quick exit after the fireworks, be sure to park on the same side of the locks as your destination.

SANTA IS COMING!!! Santa will be receiving visitors at Stewart Morrison Insurance office on Colborne St. Santa needs to get ready for the parade so be sure line up to get your photo with Santa before 3:30 pm.

Use this information as your activity guide or pick up a printed brochure at the first place you spot one! For young families, Pharmasave has a Family Friendly Station for your needs. There is also an actual Town Crier, live and in person, who will be announcing festive fun all day long. Be sure to say hi!

The Parade commences at 5:00pm SHARP! Scope out your place along the route and get ready for the dazzling lights of the Nighttime Parade. During the parade the clowns with the flashing lights will gladly accept your kind donations. Watch for the Fireworks at 6:00pm at the locks!

This incredible, popular, amazing, awesome day is TOTALLY FREE FOR ALL thanks to Santa Day volunteers and supporters, along with the business community of Fenelon Falls and the surrounding areas. Santa Day is a time to celebrate and practice the art of giving, sharing, joy and comfort. Let’s celebrate together in each and every smile passed from one person to another.

Happy Santa Day to one and all!!

Amazing Photo Credit: Karen Suggitt of Baddow Road Photography



Remembrance Activities in Fenelon Falls (Nov. 2017)

October 25, 2017

Soon poppies will blossom on the chests of the residents of Fenelon Falls as they honour and remember Veterans who served and are serving Canada, the true north strong and free.

The annual poppy campaign will be held October 27th and 28th. Legion members will be visible throughout the village collecting donations and distributing poppies.

The 17th annual Candlelight Tribute takes place Friday November 10. We meet at the locks at 7:00 pm and march off at 7:30pm. Our goal is to have 1,000 candles flickering in silent tribute to veterans. In this year of celebrating the 150th Anniversary of Confederation, we also marked the 100th anniversary of the Battles of Passchendale, The Somme, Beaumont Hamel and Vimy Ridge and the 75th anniversary of the Dieppe Raid. Thousands of Canadians were killed or wounded in these battles and their service and sacrifice deserves our respect, honour and remembrance.

We are determined to meet our goal in this special year and ask for your help by sponsoring candles in the name of a veteran, the unknown soldier or with a personal message of remembrance.. Candles are $6.00 each and may be obtained at the Legion, at Sobeys October 27th and 28th and November 2nd and 3rd or by contacting Arlene Colman at 705-454-1849.

Proceeds from these two events are placed in trust to be used for the care and benevolent support of Veterans and their dependents.  We assist by providing quality of life accessories such as mobility devices, dentures, eye glasses, hearing aids, etc.

The Remembrance Day Parade and Service takes place Saturday, November 11th at 11:00am at the Cenotaph.

We thank you for your past generosity and current support.




High School Drama at Fenelon Museum (Nov. 2017)

October 25, 2017


Maryboro Lodge is proud to present Fenelon Falls: A Walk Through Time a play written and directed by the Fenelon Falls Secondary School senior Drama class on November 6th, Monday at 12 noon.


The show, Fenelon Falls: A Walk Through Time, showcases the rich and interesting history of Fenelon Falls, and the invigorating characters which once lived there. The play will incorporate the majority of the rooms in the Maryboro Lodge museum, in order to truly bring the history to life.


Fenelon Falls and its surrounding area have plenty of history to share, and the Fenelon Falls Secondary School’s senior Drama class will be showcasing it with this walk through performance. Guests will be escorted through the museum and will see a variety of characters and scenes specific to our local history.


The senior Drama class has developed the show in collaboration with the museum’s staff and local historians.  Students have been learning about our local history through regular museum visits, and research in the community. This play will appeal to all ages and everyone is welcome to attend. There is no admission fee, however a donation to the museum is appreciated.


The museum will be open November 6th from 12 to 2 p.m.for play and all are welcomed.


Planning in Full Swing for Santa (Oct. 2017)

September 26, 2017

Fenelon Falls Santa Day – Mark the last Saturday in November on your calendars.

Santa Day Magnet Final 2017To paraphrase the Neil Diamond song “Wrap up the babies & grab the old ladies and everyone come” to Fenelon Falls November 25th for Santa Day.

Come & see which of your favourite attractions are still here & which ones are new. What is your favourite?  Is it the Petting Zoo, Wagon Rides, Face Painting, Decorating a Gingerbread Cookie, Pony Rides, a Magician, Letters to Santa, visiting the Reindeer, or visiting Santa & getting your picture taken with him. Oh what have we missed?

Don’t forget all the treats given out throughout the day by our local merchants.

What better way to end such a great day than with an amazing Parade starting at 5pm. & Fireworks following Santa!

All this for the low, low, price of No Charge thanks to our generous merchants, corporate, and private supporters!

Help us spread the word. Tell all your relatives, friends, neighbours, and anybody else to come to Fenelon Falls on Saturday November 25 from 11- 6:30 for a day of fun, family, food, and more.

Donations for Santa Day are always welcome. See below for more information.

See you there.

2017 Donation Request for Website

Santa Day 2017 Donation Form

Santa Day 2017 Donation Options

Decoration Service, Vimy Tree Planted (2017)

September 26, 2017

At the recent Decoration service, The Royal Canadian Legion Fenelon Falls Branch 238 Colour Party carry the Colours. The Salvation Army Fenelon Falls Corps Band provided the music for the hymns and the Canadian and Royal Anthems.


The service is for those who have passed during the past year and also Veterans who have died.

2nd Vice President Arlene Colman of The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 238 Fenelon Falls, led the Decoration Service.


During a ceremony at Fenelon Falls Cemetery The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 238 dedicated a Vimy Oak tree which is a decendant of the Oaks that grew at Vimy Ridge 100 yrs ago, during the historic Canadian victory in world war one.

In the picture is 2nd vice President Arlene Coleman and Chaplain Major Roy Randell.


Maryboro Lodge Fall Events (Sept. 2017)

August 29, 2017
Have you been to the museum lately? There is life in all that history! This summer was an active one for the team at Maryboro Lodge. Check out their facebook feed to review some of the awesome events that were held on the lawn outside the museum, in full view of beautiful Cameron Lake. Highlights include the afternoon teas, Fenelon Live open mics, and just last weekend a visit from Laurie Scott MPP.
We have a Monarch Butterfly Release this Sunday September 3 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm.  You can purchase a “tagged” Monarch or “Painted Lady”.  The Monarchs are $25 and the Painted Ladies are $20.  The Painted Ladies will stay close to the gardens of the museum and will lay their eggs for more  butterflies next year.  The Monarchs will start their journey south with the hopes of making it to Mexico; and then return to Texas to lay their eggs. Because they are tagged, people can get updates on their journeys through email from different stations.
Pre-register at Museum or on the day of September 3rd.
Doors Open are happening in Kawartha Lakes, and the museum is part of the tour September 9th and 10th.
Harvest Happenings on Thanksgiving weekend will be at the Museum this year.  We will be making “Scarecrows” and “Pumpkins”  Lots of Apple cider and good food available
A huge thanks to the residents and visitors, our student employees and Board and Partners of Fenelon Falls for the huge success this summer at the Fenelon Museum.  We are grateful to the Town Crier for all their help in advertising and letting
people know what is at the end of “Oak Street”.  We look forward to next year and an amazing summer.
(Us too!)

Trees To Remember Vimy By (August 2017)

July 25, 2017


Everyone knows the Battle of Vimy Ridge during WWI was one of the defining moments in Canada’s history. The battle raged for three days, April 9-12, 1917. Where allied troops struggled and failed, the Canadians overcame great odds and captured the ridge. For the first time all four Canadian divisions attacked together: men from all regions of Canada were present at the battle. Brigadier-General A.E. Ross declared after the war, “in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation.”  The price of victory was heavy 3,598 Canadians were killed and another 7,000 wounded. Four Canadians were awarded the Victoria Cross and the entire Canadian contingent was commended for their bravery.


Canadian machine gunners dig themselves into shell holes on Vimy Ridge,

France, April 1917

(courtesy Library and Archives Canada/PA-1017).

Prior to the battle the area was heavily forested with mighty oaks; after the battle nearly every tree had been destroyed. A Canadian soldier, Lieutenant Leslie Miller of Scarborough salvaged a handful of acorns from a dying oak tree and sent them home to be planted on his farm where they flourished. Today ten of these trees still stand and sapling descendants have been bred from them. Over 100 saplings are destined to be planted next to the Vimy Monument in France.

A limited number were made available and the Fenelon Falls Legion was fortunate in being approved to purchase two. They come with certification of their descendancy from Original Vimy Ridge Oaks acorns.

To commemorate the 150th Anniversary of Canada, the Fenelon Falls Legion is gifting the Village with two descendant saplings to be planted at the Cenotaph and the Veterans’ area of the Fenelon Falls Cemetery. Branch President, Wes Arscott, says “we hope that these saplings will thrive and be a living memorial to all Veterans who made the true north strong and free”.

For more information on the Fenelon Falls Legion, click here.


A Walk Down Movie Lane (August 2017)

July 18, 2017

Fenelon records memories of theatre

FTM-Midnight Madness-shirtsWhat a night it was during Midnight Madness!  Setting up the marquee sign in town generated a tremendous amount of excitement and crowds. Conversations were had of great moments remembered from the Fenelon Theatre days….including lots of first dates and kisses! Many of those moments were captured in writing on our ‘memory boards’.  Be sure to check our Facebook page for posted pictures of these boards.

Many thanks to all who stopped by our successful pop-up shop and purchased merchandise and/or gave donations to help support this fundraising campaign.

For those of you who may have missed us during Midnight Madness, you can also find the t-shirts and hoodies available for purchase at Grr8 Finds Market and The Fenelon Falls Museum, Maryboro Lodge.

Our new website is currently under construction. In the meantime keep tuned to Facebook for information on another pop-up shop coming soon!

‘With your donations, we can make this happen’

– Fenelon Theatre Marquee Group

19884502_1374219302614916_7742826406934947686_nFTM-Memory Board 2

Looking Back at Father Fenelon (June 2017)

May 30, 2017

An excerpt from the research done by Arlene Colman for the Canada 150 Celebration in Fenelon Falls.

François de Salignac de la Mothe-Fénelon (1641-1679)  “ Father Fenelon”

 Screen Shot 2017-05-28 at 8.47.22 AMHe was a Sulpician missionary and explorer in New France. He is sometimes confused with his younger half-brother of the same name who became celebrated as the Archbishop of Cambrai, in France.

Portrait of his half brother the Archbishop of Cambrai, France at left. (Perhaps there is a family resemblance)

He was ten years older than his half-brother. They both had the same father, Pons de Salignac de la Mothe Fenelon (1601-1663). Missionary Francois’ mother was Isabelle d’Esparbes de Lussan and the Archbishop’s mother was Louise de la Cropte. He came of ancient family of noble birth but small means.

Little is known of François’ early years beyond his birth in Château de Fénelon in Périgord. His mother, Isabelle d’Esparbes de Lussan died in 1645 and his father remarried in 1647. He had several brothers and sisters and two half-brothers. In 1665 he entered the Seminary of Saint-Sulpice in Paris, France to pursue a religious life, a long standing family tradition. In 1666 he was so eager to devote himself to the missions in New France that he obtained permission to leave after spending only 15 months in the seminary in Paris. He set sail January 30, 1667 and arrived at Quebec on 27 June. Bishop Laval ordained him a priest on 11 June 1668.

He and Claude Trouvé left almost immediately to establish a mission (village of Cayugas) for the Iroquois near the Bay of Quinte on Lake Ontario. On 28 Oct. 1668 they reached the village of Kenté and spent the winter there.

Dollier de Casson appended to his Histoire du Montréal a  long letter written by Father  Trouvé, which is a résumé of the history of the Kenté mission. One can glimpse in it the great daring and stamina which characterized these athletic young missionaries who propelled their birch-bark canoes through rapids and ice floes as they travelled from Lake Ontario to Montreal and Quebec, wintering in the woods where at times they got lost, eating sagamité and pumpkin, and succeeding only in baptizing children or a few adults on the point of death.

This was the first Sulpician mission among the Iroquois and was abandoned in 1680. Below is a picture of an Ontario Heritage Plaque honouring the occasion. Screen Shot 2017-05-28 at 8.48.07 AM

Father Fenelon spent the winter of 1669/70 at Ganatsekwyagon, (meaning “break in the cliffs” or “opening in the sand hills”) an Iroquoian village at the mouth of the Rouge River (near present day Port Hope). This resulted in the nearby Frenchman’s Bay being named for him.

Father Fenelon spent a winter, the exact date cannot be ascertained, living with the Indians in the area of Fenelon Falls. The Village was subsequently named for him. A school for Indian children was established at three islands in Lac Saint-Louis (above Lachine) and given the name Gentilly.

Father Fénelon was summoned there , as he had experience of Indian life. On that occasion Governor Buade de Frontenac wrote, 9 January 1673: “ The great zeal that Sieur Abbé de Fénelon has exhibited for several years in the propagation of Christianity in this colony, and the devotion that he has displayed in His Majesty’s service, constrain us to seek every kind of means of recognizing them and of pressing him to keep up the zeal he has shown up to the present; a zeal whose ardour has prompted him to abandon all the substantial establishments that his birth and merit might have entitled him to expect in France, in order to devote himself entirely to the conversion and education of the Indians.”

By 1674 Father Fenelon had been in New France for 7 years and accomplished much. However 1674 turned out to be the end of his Canadian adventures. The Governor-General of New France Buade Louis Frontenac (1622-1698) and Francois-Marie Perrot (1644-1691) Governor of Montreal were both competitors in the fur trade and used their authority to further these enterprises. Frontenac had Perrot arrested under rather dubious circumstances and charged with defying the authority of the Governor-General.

Portrait of Buade de Frontenac - artist unknown.

Portrait of Buade de Frontenac – artist unknown.

Father Fenelon incurred Governor Frontenac’s displeasure by his opposition to the arrest of Perrot. To further inflame matters on 25 March 1674 Father Fenelon spoke out from the pulpit in criticism of Frontenac’s actions and he too was arrested. Despite the great pressure that Frontenac brought to bear on the members of the Conseil Souverain they finally concluded that the issues involved were beyond their jurisdiction; they ordered that the cases should be referred to the King and that Perrot and the Abbé Fénelon should be sent to France to answer the charges laid against them.

His fellow clerics distanced themselves from him and Frontenac called for his expulsion. Frontenac took a very high and mighty attitude and requested the Sulpician Superior to expel Father Fénelon from the Society.

On arriving in France Perrot was shut up in the Bastille for some time and then sent back to his governor’s duties at Montreal. King Louis XIV (1638-1715) concluded that all concerned had been at fault, especially Frontenac who was severely censured for his actions and his attitude towards Father Fenelon. Frontenac returned to his duties as Governor with his authority curbed, limited to military matters and supervising but not interfering with officials.

As for Father Fénelon, he did not escape unscathed he was reprimanded by his religious superior Bretonvilliers for interfering in worldly matters, just as he had been in Montreal. He was forbidden to return to Canada. He withdrew from the Society of Saint-Sulpice and died at 38 years of age in 1679. Not even a trace remains of the mission he founded at Kente.

While his time in Canada was short his footprints can be found today as his name lingers on as follows:

  • Father Fénelon Catholic School Pickering, Ontario, named after an educator who gave up a life of wealth and comfort to become a priest and missionary.
  • Fenelon Boulevard in Dorval, Quebec
  • Ontario Provincial Heritage plaque
  • Frenchman’s Bay

His half-brother the celebrated Archbishop of Cambrai ran afoul of both the King and the Pope for his writings and controversial views. He was confined within the boundaries of the Archdiocese of Cambrai in his later years and died 7 January 1715 at 64 years of age.

Sources: W. Stewart WALLACE, ed., The Encyclopedia of Canada, Vol. II, Toronto, University Associates of Canada, 1948, 411p., p. 327; Historical document “Salignac de La Mothe-Fenelon by Jean de Chanleiac; Dictionary of Canadian Biography, Catholic Encyclopedia and miscellaneous websites.


Fenelon Falls Freemasons Celebrate 300 Years With an Open House (May 2017)

May 2, 2017


2017 is a very important year to Ontario Freemasons and to all Freemasons around the world. It marks 300 years since Freemasonry was formally organized under a single Masonic government. This occasion took place in London, England at the Goose and Gridiron Tavern.

In the three hundred years since, Freemasonry has spread across the globe and become the oldest and largest fraternal organization in the world. The primary focus of the organization is to take a good man, and make him better, all the while observing the principles of brotherly love, relief and truth. Part of this is developing an understanding of charity and benevolence. Freemasons have raised funds for many causes both locally and nationally. The Masonic Foundation of Ontario works diligently on projects that make life better for many people.

In Canada, Freemasonry has proven itself to be a fraternity that believes we are all equal no matter what our stations in life. Membership consists of doctors, lawyers, teachers, truck drivers and men from many other professions as well as labourers to name but a few. We have been known to have some men who stand out in their professions as members as well. We can boast many names such as Sir John A MacDonald, Tim Horton and one that many people in this area will be familiar with, Sir Sandford Fleming. All these men and all Freemasons share a common goal of helping to make each other a better man.

Ontario has 541 lodges with approximately 42000 members. Fenelon Falls is home to The Spry Lodge located at 10 Green St. It is housed in a two storey grey building located at the back of the high school. The lodge was established in 1884 and was located above stores on the main street. In 1935 the current building became the home of The Spry Lodge and is still in use today. The building was originally a continuation school for Fenelon Falls and was constructed in 1885 from stones taken from the canal and locks when they had been constructed.

On June 3, 2017, from 10:00 A.M. until 2:00 P.M., the lodge will be holding an open house for the community to come and discover more about Freemasonry and what we do within the community. There will be many members on hand to show people the lodge room and answer questions. There will also be refreshments in the banquet room. All are invited to attend.

Don Young Retires from Ambulance Services after 39 years (Apr. 2017)

April 4, 2017

Don Young

In 1978 a young Don Young joined the Fenelon Ambulance services and opened the door to an ever changing, ever challenging career.

When Don started, Fenelon Ambulance was owned by Bruce Wood.  They had 3 full time paramedics, Bruce, Charlie Perrin and Rick Wilkins and 2 part time, Pug Allen and Don.  They worked on site 8-4 if they were called out in the night and they had a shift the next day they still had to complete their shift.   Their home base was first on Bond Street in Fenelon Falls and then when it was sold to the owner of Beaverton Ambulance Services it moved to Peace Valley and now has found its home on Wychwood Crescent.

The Original Fenelon Ambulance Service

Training at the time was held at Canadian Forces Base Borden. It was called the Fundamentals of Casualty Care, consisted of one month Monday to Friday of anatomy and physiology, advanced first aid, splinting for fractures, and light rescue techniques. They were trained in the Holger Nielson method of respiration and the Revised Silvester. These were the days before CPR.

1978 dodge van used for the ambulance service

They did all their own rescues.  Pug remembers the weekends in Fenelon Falls being like the wild west drinking and driving was common place as was driving in cars without seat belts.  Many times they were first on scene for a labour that came too quickly or was unexpected there were a number of Fenelon Falls babies born in the arms of the capable ambulance attendants.  A stretcher attached to water skis was created to transport those injured on the snowmobile trail or at the cottage which only had access by sled in the winter.  They had to be quick on their feet and quick with a solution to many different situations that could not be taught in a classroom. They needed to trust their partner explicitly.

Don’s quiet calm manner and his smile was a welcome sight in a chaotic situation.  Even when it meant answering a call dealing with family or friends. He spoke, you listened, he told you exactly what to do and you did it confidently because you knew Don would never steer you wrong. He was always soft spoken and anyone who was in his care knew instantly they were in good hands.   Servicing an area where he was born and grew up, where he knew most of the people whom he was called upon to help must have had its challenges but you never saw that with Don.  It did not matter what the situation who was involved his demeanor never changed.

On Sunday April 2nd  Don will close the doors of an ambulance for the last time.  The community of Fenelon Falls is thankful to have had Don as part of the Ambulance services for 39 years.

We hope you enjoy your retirement.

Article by Caroline Fenelius Carpenter

artsVest brings training to Arts Organizations in KL (Feb. 2017)

February 7, 2017

artsVest™ brings year-long training to arts organizations and matching funds to Kawartha Lakes’ cultural economy

 Screen Shot 2017-02-01 at 2.42.01 PMKawartha Lakes, ON – January 30, 2017—Business for the Arts, Canada’s only national charitable organization that strengthens arts and culture in Canada by building partnerships between the private and cultural sectors, announced today that its artsVest program is returning to Kawartha Lakes. With funding support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation and the Government of Canada, $30,000 in matching funds will be delivered to local arts organizations. The program will also receive local municipal support from the City of Kawartha Lakes.


artsVest is Business for the Arts’ national flagship program that works directly with small to mid-sized arts organizations, equipping them with in-depth training, tools and mentorship relationships. These components are thoughtfully created to build sustainable partnerships between arts and businesses and to spark sponsorship opportunities. As an added incentive, artsVest participants can apply for matching grants – for every one dollar raised in sponsorship, Business for the Arts will match it with another dollar – doubling their sponsorship opportunity.


“Business for the Arts is thrilled to be bringing the artsVest program back to Kawartha Lakes,” says Aida Aydinyan, Vice President of Business for the Arts. “The generous funding and support from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Government of Canada and the City of Kawartha Lakes speaks volumes to the importance and power of building relationships between the sectors. We look forward to seeing the incredible impact these arts organizations and businesses will have in Kawartha Lakes over the next year.”


“Establishing partnerships between our cultural and business sectors is a smart strategy. It builds the local creative economy and strengthens our communities,” says Mayor Andy Letham. “We are very pleased to have the artsVest program return to Kawartha Lakes.”


A ‘Sponsorship 101’ afternoon workshop followed by a program launch will take place on Monday, February 27. For details on this event, more on the program and how to apply, visit


artsVest saw a successful cycle in its pilot year in Kawartha Lakes in 2013 where 7 arts organizations created 26 business partnerships. Matching funds of over $38,000 generated over $68,000 in private sector sponsorships and resulted in an investment impact of over $107,000 to Kawartha Lakes’ cultural economy.


artsVest also operates in four other Ontario communities in addition to Saskatchewan, Alberta, Toronto, Nova Scotia and British Columbia. Since the national expansion of the program in 2011, a total of 2,874 partnerships have been created between arts and businesses across Canada.


Notice of Statutory Public Meeting (Jan. 2017)

January 24, 2017

regarding proposed amendments to the Official Plans for the City of Kawartha Lakes, Lindsay and Fenelon Falls

KAWARTHA LAKES— The Planning Committee, on behalf of the Council of the City of Kawartha Lakes, will hold a statutory public meeting on Wednesday February 8, at 1pm in Council Chambers, City Hall, 26 Francis Street, Lindsay.

The purpose of the meeting is to receive information and public input on proposed amendments to enhance existing policies and establish new policies respecting the management of the City’s heritage program, including policies related to Heritage Conservation Districts.

Information relating to the proposed amendments is available from the City of Kawartha Lakes Development Services Department – Planning Division, Lindsay Service Centre, 180 Kent Street West, Lindsay, during regular office hours; by phone or email: Richard Holy, Manager of Policy Planning, 705-324-9411 extension 1246, and at the City of Kawartha Lakes website at this link:

Information relating to the proposed Heritage Conservation Districts is available by contacting Debra Soule, Arts Culture and Heritage Development Officer, 705-324-9411 extension 1498, and at the City of Kawartha Lakes website:

Any person may attend the Public Meeting and/or make written or verbal representation either in support of, in opposition to, or in respect of the proposed amendments. At the public meeting presentations that would take longer than ten minutes should be presented in written form and summarized verbally.  All submissions will be considered.

Christmas Eve Church Services (Dec. 2016)

December 13, 2016

Each year, as the days darken in December and the coloured lights come on, I remember the first time I attended a Christmas Eve service after a very long absence from church.

The feeling had been building for weeks, as I shopped and baked and prepared for our family Christmas celebration. I remember buying a tiny ornament of the nativity and hanging it on the tree. But I wanted more. I wanted to hear the story – told by candlelight, the familiar carols and the sense of the holy that seemed to fill the church of my childhood on Christmas Eve.

christmas-church-cross-stitch-kit-3857-pIt felt strange walking into a church after so many years. But suddenly there it was, the story of the young mother and her babe born in the night, the startled shepherds, the angels singing. It was like coming home to something I had been missing without knowing it.

What I had missed was that deep-down assurance that God comes. That is the heart of the story, the heart of Christmas. God came — as the child of a poor family in an ordinary village. As one writer said, “To experience Christmas is to trust that God can do this thing again. God can again be born in me, in you, in this broken, gorgeous world.”

Why not find a church this Christmas, tuck yourself into a pew, listen to the story again, and share the light of a candle. Fenelon Falls offers many options for you to gather with other to celebrate Christmas.

Fenelon Falls United Church, Immanuel Baptist, The Salvation Army, St Andrews Presbyterian Church and Shilo Christian Centre have a Christmas Eve Service at 7 pm.

Trentside Baptist Church (Fenelon Falls) has Christmas Eve services at 5:30 pm and 6:30 pm.

St. James Fenelon Falls has a Family service featuring a come-as-you-are pageant with live animals at 4 pm, and a traditional candlelight communion at 10 pm.

St. Aloysius Roman Catholic Church Christmas Eve Mass at 4 pm and 10 pm

St. Aloysius Roman Catholic Church Christmas Eve Mass at 4 pm and 10 pm

If you are looking for a more subdued Christmas worship service, Fenelon Falls United Church is holding a Quiet Christmas – a peaceful time of worship to remember loved ones, on Tuesday December 20th at 7 pm.

Farewell to The Fenelon Falls Movie Theatre (Nov. 2016)

November 29, 2016

By : Lois Densmore

theatre3The landscape of Fenelon Falls took quite a turn this week as the town said goodbye to the old movie theatre.

Originally built in 1948 by the Consky brothers, Lou, Max and Sam, the theatre presented a lineup of Disney movies and Main Street shows to Fenelon Falls residents and summer cottagers.

When it first opened, Saturday afternoons were a busy time with kids lined up to see the latest show. Admission was a quarter and popcorn was five cents. The building has changed hands a number of times and has not been open since the early 2000s.

The cinder-blocks used to build the theatre were hand made. Cement was poured into metal frames by Mark Fel and Milt Perryman. I heard from one of our locals that Milt is still alive at age 91 and living in Windsor.

theatre2The theatre was valued at $750k, on sale for $450k, and in 1995 sold for $50,000 to Jim McManamy and his brother Joseph.

The brothers had a theatrical background, Jim having more than 30 years of experience in theatre and film. He was also the head electrician at the Shaw Festival. They stored a lot of their equipment in what is now the Blue Oak Antique Shop – the building started life as the blacksmith shop doing work for local businesses in the farm community.



Over the years the McManamy boys made many improvements to the theatre including a fire alarm system, plus all new plumbing and all new electrical. They also installed sounds-a-round in the auditorium plus new theatre seats and new floors. Changes were also made to the apartment – inner walls to outside walls were torn out, creating one 1400 sq. ft. flat, consisting of kitchen, dining room, living room, 2 bedrooms, and 2 four piece bathrooms with a Jacuzzi tub in the master.

A complete list of improvements can been seen at the following URL.

In 2006 they hosted Bill Haley in the theartre6“Man in Black” tour, a tribute to Johnny Cash. The venue also played host to many other events including a few country bands, company off-sites and a few weddings with PowerPoint running on the bride and groom’s lives.

The McManamys believed it possible to keep culture alive in tourist towns and went to great lengths to raise money to maintain the theatre, and in July of that year offered a special fish and chip lunch with tickets purchased for the 2 PM show.

Comments on Facebook provides some history :

Jason used to come here as a kid with this cousins and sister back in the 70’s and watch all the latest ‘flicks’.

threatresignLarry remembers his uncle going to the weekend all night horror movies.

I had the opportunity to chat with residents who were here when the theatre was alive and kicking,

Jack fondly remembers the specials presented on the day after Santa Day. Brenda was an avid theatre goer from 1960 until the theatre closed.
Long time resident Marg was the librarian here in Fenelon for 17 years. She rarely missed a movie as they changed over weekly, but her ‘BiG DEAL’ was seeing ‘Gone with the Wind’. Other movies were shown via reel so you could always stay for a second showing if you wished…..Not ‘Gone with the Wind’, it was that special.

As with many of the joys of our childhoods, we said farewell to the theatre this week. It’s history however deserves to live on.

Note: for more about the future of the Fenelon Sign click here.


Walter Sweeney – Recognized for Substantial ‘Service Above Self’ (Nov. 2016)

November 15, 2016
President Dave Kish, City of Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham, newest Paul Harris recipient Walter Sweeney, City of Kawartha Lakes Counsellors Doug Emslie and Steve Strangway and City of Kawartha Lakes Fire Chief Mark  Pankhurst

President Dave Kish, City of Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham, newest Paul Harris recipient Walter Sweeney, City of Kawartha Lakes Counsellors Doug Emslie and Steve Strangway and City of Kawartha Lakes Fire Chief Mark

A special evening of recognition for local resident, Walter Sweeney, was recently held at the Fenelon Community Centre. The Fenelon Falls Fire Fighters (Station #22) and St. John Ambulance (Kawartha Lakes) joined the Rotary Club of Fenelon Falls at the Rotary meeting.

Along with Rotary members, the City of Kawartha Lakes Mayor, Andy Letham, City of Kawartha Lakes Counsellors Doug Emslie and Steve Strangway and City of Kawartha Lakes Fire Chief Mark Pankhurst joined the evening festivities.

At the October Rotary meeting, the Paul Harris Award was presented to Walter Sweeney.  A resident of Fenelon Falls, Walter has 36 years of service as a volunteer fire fighter in Fenelon Falls, as well as a member of St. John Ambulance.

Walter spends most of his weekends at local fairs, public educational events or first aid classes throughout the area; always contributing his time to the good of others.


Christine Keenan, our Master of Ceremonies for the evening gave some background information on Paul Harris. A Chicago attorney, Harris was best known for founding Rotary International in 1905.

In 1957, The Paul Harris Fellows program was established to show appreciation for and encourage substantial contributions to what was then the Rotary Foundation.

Paul Harris fellows include Mother Theresa and Nelson Mandela, to mention a few; good examples of those who made daily contributions to Service Above Self.  


 The newest member of an elite group - the Paul Harris Society - Walter Sweeney receives his award from President Dave Kish

The newest member of an elite group – the Paul Harris Society – Walter Sweeney receives his award from President Dave Kish


On this special evening  in Fenelon Falls, one of our own became one of the elite group know as the Paul Harris Society made up of recipients of the prestigious award.

On behalf of the community of Fenelon Falls, “Thank You Walter” for all that you have done for our community. A well deserved award.

At the meeting, the St. John’s Ambulance was presented with financial support from the Rotary Club. The City of Kawartha Lakes Fire Fighters (Station 22) were also presented with financial support from The Rotary Club.


Council Approves Moving to Next Phase for 2 Heritage Districts (Oct. 2016)

October 4, 2016


Following the completion of in-depth studies for the Oak Street neighbourhood in Fenelon Falls and for Downtown Lindsay, Council has approved moving ahead with the creation of District Plans for both areas.

Heritage Conservation Districts are areas with distinctive heritage character that warrant special attention in planning and development processes to ensure that cherished characteristics are conserved for future generations.

The Studies for the two areas, which were carried out by Bray Heritage and Associates, confirmed that both areas have sufficient merit to become Heritage Districts.

Class of 61′ Celebrates 55th Reunion (Jul. 2016)

July 4, 2016

Reunion June 11, 2016

On Saturday, June 18, most of the remaining members of the Fenelon Falls District High School’s graduating class of 1961 held their fifty-fifth reunion at the home of Arnott and Ruth Anne Matthews. 

After an afternoon of reminiscing, the group of twenty-two, which included several of the spouses, sat down to dinner at Nolan’s Restaurant in Fenelon Falls.  All agreed that it was wonderful to once again see former classmates and old friends. 

We all look forward to another reunion in five years!

The Real Jewel of the Kawarthas for Decades (Jun. 2016)

June 20, 2016
Boaters fill the locks in Fenelon Falls in the late 70's.

Boaters fill the locks in Fenelon Falls in the late 70’s.

Residents of Fenelon Falls know when summer time has hit. Fenelon Falls becomes the tourist mecca of Kawartha Lakes. Parking lots are full, grocery lines triple, restaurant seating is limited, ice cream flavours quadruple, and ohhhh…. the traffic.  Everyone wants a piece of this heaven we call Fenelon Falls. In the summer time, we are happy to share.

People flock to the Fenelon Falls area with their boats in tow, trailers filled with ATV’s, travel trailers stocked to the brim. Some come for day trips with picnic baskets, bathing suits, cameras and fishing rods.  Some come to check out curious stores and search for antiques – haven’t you heard?? We are the Grr8-est place for that too! Whatever the suits your pleasure, we always welcome you.

Some come to enjoy the pristine waters of Cameron Lake and take advantage of cruising the Trent Severn Waterways through Lock 34. Some come to enjoy the fishing or water sports. Some come to visit friends and family. Others come just to explore the many trail systems that wind through the nature that surrounds us. Whatever they come in search of, they also find the true jewel of Fenelon Falls.

Fenelon Falls has had a reputation for being the tourism hot spot of Kawartha Lakes for decades. While the other larger centres within our ‘greater city’ offer fancier stores, more variety for shoppers, some places offer lakes, trails and camping but nowhere else in Kawartha Lakes will you find the draw that you find in Fenelon Falls.

Shhh…we are going to let you in on a little secret. It is the people… The smiling faces that always take the time to chat with you. The kind locals that always go above and beyond to make you feel welcome. The friendly storekeepers that go out of their way to help you find what you need. The kind server that goes the extra distance to make sure that your meal is just how you like it. The gentleman that will hold the door for you. The well-mannered young person that lets you pass first. The family that will invite you to sit with them if you are alone. The overall good nature of the people in our little village.

This is the spirit of Fenelon Falls and this is the secret to why people keep coming back!!!! Our people are the true ‘Jewel’  in Fenelon Falls.  It has been this way for years. Come and see for yourself. We would love to have you.


Article by Corrie Lee

History of the Fenelon Dairy (May 2016)

May 23, 2016
Fenelon Dairy 1957

Fenelon Dairy 1957

At the corner of highway 35a and 35, lies a farm with strong roots to Fenelon Falls.  It was there that the Fenelon Dairy first began.  Jennie and Hugh Graham began the dairy in 1921.  They had 6 children, many who stayed in the area.  One, Al, who took over the Dairy at a later date.  In 1949, the Fenelon Dairy came to Fenelon Falls in the concrete building that now houses “Slices and Scoops”.  The building was built and operated by Hugh and then by his son Al. It opened in the spring of 1949 and first employed 4 staff.

In 1966, a quart of chocolate milk was 28 cents, 3 quarts of 2 per cent was 73 cents and a 1/4 pint of sour cream was 25 cents.  In 1969, the Dixie Lee franchise was established in Fenelon Falls.  In the summers following, business boomed. It was the place to go for ice cream on a hot summer day while watching the boats.  Flavours like rum and raisin, pralines and cream, supplemented the regular chocolate, vanilla and strawberry.  It was the place where many local youth had their first job, scooping ice cream or serving french fries or chicken snack packs.
After many renovations and changes, the business was sold in 1997 and the building was sold in 2000.  On a hot day, you can still buy an ice cream and watch the boats. Some would say it is still a summer Fenelon tradition.

About the author…

Caroline Fenelius Carpenter is a well know local writer and story teller. Her gift of sharing memories is perfectly suited to her vocation as a Celebrant. Caroline is available to host memorials, funerals, and celebrations. For more information call Caroline Fenelius-Carpenter – Funeral Celebrant Services at 705- 877 -2780 or contact her by email at

The Story of One Spot in Fenelon (Apr. 26 2016)

April 25, 2016
Pictured above: George Armstrong and Alf Tiers

Pictured above: George Armstrong and Alf Tiers

Bert’s Appliances now stands on the property where George Armstrong owned and ran the garage and Ford Dealership in 1939. The business was run by Sandy, Mac and Jerry Armstrong.

The call of the war took Sandy and Mac overseas where they served in the armed forces.

On April 30, 1945 the news came out of the death of Hitler. On May 1, 1945 in the empty lot beside Armstrong Garage, where the theatre now stands, an effigy depicting Hitler was raised up and lit on fire. It drew a huge crowd.

Families gathered to celebrate the end of the war, the hope it brought and the long awaited return of the men who had gone overseas.

Jerry Armstrong continued the garage after the war until the early 1970’s. It changed hands a number of times housing Emmon Motors, then Herrington’s Garage and later a video store before becoming Bert’s Applinces.

The empty lot beside was bought in 1948 by the Consky family who owned the movie theatre in Minden and the Fenelon Theatre was built. When it first opened Saturday afternoons were a busy time with kids lined up to see the latest show. Admission was a quarter and popcorn was 5 cents. The building has changed hands a number of times and has not been open since the beginning of the 2000’s.


About the author…

Caroline Fenelius Carpenter is a well know local writer and story teller. Her gift of sharing memories is perfectly suited to her vocation as a Celebrant. Caroline is available to host memorials, funerals, and celebrations. For more information call Caroline Fenelius-Carpenter – Funeral Celebrant Services at 705- 877 -2780 or contact her by email at

Local Limestone Quarries (Mar. 2016)

March 28, 2016

Quarry 1920


With the demand for granite for mill stones, gravel for rail road infrastructure and limestone for the locks in Fenelon Falls, a quarry was needed around Fenelon Falls in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s.  In those days quarries were mined primarily by hand.  The demand exhausted the ability to supply locally and eventually rock had to be brought in from other areas to keep up with the construction timelines.

This picture is from a postcard with the text – “Quarry near Fenelon Falls in the 1920’s”. It is unclear, but many local history buffs believe it is actually the Burnt River Quarry.

The village of Burnt River, being part of the Canadian Shield that meets the Great Lakes Lowlands, is composed mostly of hard granite rocks. The Great Lakes Lowlands is made up of a lot of limestone. Limestone is a softer rock that is more widely used than the hard granite. Just west of Burnt River is a limestone ledge, often referred to as the Pinery Ledge. This ledge was ideal for a quarry.

The Victoria Railway was conveniently built right past this area in 1876, the same year that Alexander Rettie started the Burnt River Quarry. The Quarry was later taken over by Samuel Suddaby, who was responsible for growing it into a profiting business.

Limestone was a highly sot after commodity in the growing communities around Kawartha Lakes at the turn of the century.  The large lime kilns at Coboconk were built for converting limestone into agricultural and building materials . It was also crushed for gravel for road building. As a soft stone, it can also be carved into building blocks. Gravel and building blocks were the main products of the Burnt River Quarry.

Burnt River limestone building blocks were used all over Ontario. Locally, most of the railway trestles were built with these blocks. You can find them today at the Crego Creek trestle south of Kinmount & the old IB&O bridge abutments at Howland Junction.

At the peak of production, the Burnt River Quarry employed up to 40 men, many of the skilled workers recruited from Britain. During the height of production, 14 carloads of crushed stone was shipped out on the rails daily.

The quarry operated until 1924 when it was purchased by Hagersville Quarry Company and production ceased. The site was closed to ensure that Hagersville’s larger quarry sites would control a monopoly on the limestone market.  It stands abandoned to this very day.


Article by Corrie Lee

The Old Arena Story (Mar. 2016)

February 29, 2016

FullSizeRenderIn 1966 Fenelon Falls was an idyllic town of 1400 people. A committee had been formed in the community to build a new arena.  The old arena was a tin building which had natural ice.  Games were played dependant on the weather and temperatures outside. 

A new arena was needed with an artificial ice plant.  A committee of five was formed to spearhead the project which in the end brought together a whole community.  $13,000 was raised through private donations and fundraising efforts including a $50 a plate dinner and $100 tickets where the winner could win a car. The dinner included some NHL referees, Al Stanley and his wife and was hosted by the writer Scott Young.  

Many residents donated leisure time to work on the construction of the building which was to house the ice making equipment.  Residents were side by side digging trenches in the evening for the pipes.  When the doors opened 150 boys participated in the first Minor hockey program and not one of them had to pay; in 1969 the price for hockey had risen to $6 and with that you got a stick. 

The residents who played a role in the building of the arena did not know that their efforts would house some legendary games, epic battles and quintessential performances for some of their own generations 50 years later until the those very walls were ripped down earlier this month. 


About the author…

Caroline Fenelius Carpenter is a well know local writer and story teller. Her gift of sharing memories is perfectly suited to her vocation as a Celebrant. Caroline is available to host memorials, funerals, and celebrations. For more information call Caroline Fenelius-Carpenter – Funeral Celebrant Services at 705- 877 -2780 or contact her by email at