Opinion: Let’s hope Saturday is one of a kind

By Mike Williscraft

Added dining restrictions under Niagara Section 22 order have claimed another victim. This Saturday’s pancake breakfast at Eggspectation for West Lincoln Community Care will be rescheduled for January.

The event was to be the third and final such event, with the first two supporting Grimsby Benevolent Fund and Community Care of West Niagara respectively. The event will run, but it was thought best by all involved to change the timing in everyone’s best interests.

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Yes, Saturday will be parade day, folks.

Two months ago, I didn’t think it would happen. Great work by Trevor Ruzylo at Grimsby Recreation Services and a host of volunteers will make a reverse parade happen from 5-9 p.m. all around town.

When we first talked about trying to get something up and operational it really did seem like a daunting task, and that is just with the parade aspect. By the time you mix in Grimsby Benevolent Fund and Grimsby Firefighters Association combining for their annual food drive, you bring on a whole other world of hurt when it comes to things those folks are dealing with day in, day out in our current COVID climate.

So, before I go a word further, let’s just step back and give a round of applause to the scores of people who have made this happen. And a big thanks to RONA Grimsby.

These folks stepped up to sponsor the Santa “float” which will adorn downtown Grimsby’s Main Street on Saturday evening, complete with the big man in red.

For me, having Santa on Main Street and creating an event where the firefighters can do – in a safe environment both for them and those donating to the food drive – was paramount.

Virtually all our traditions were torched in what has been a brutal year for many, in so many ways. Events don’t matter one little bit when it compares to someone’s health, but it sure has been tough when nearly all our community’s events have been “X-ed” out.
Canada Day, Remembrance Day, Happening in Grimsby, Miracle on King, Easter egg hunts, Breakfast with Santa…you name it. All were toast in a crispy 2020.

This weekend’s event is absolutely nothing like the regular parade, but participants will get to see some of our community groups, some entertainment, donate food (if you can) and give Santa a wave. That essence will live on and hopefully it will bridge the event and the community to a time when we never have to do it again.

If traffic is backed up, be patient. We have no idea what it will be like or what the response will be.

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Only one time in writing a column did I get more of a response than to my Nov. 19 offering regarding anonymous letters.

Just shy of the 100 mark when it comes to letters – hand-written and typed – emails, texts and phone calls flowed in over the following week. It was overwhelming. I thank all those who contacted me with various forms of support. The intent was not to curry support, rather simply to suggest there is LOTS of valid, opposing views out there and all of those views are welcome.

There was an abundance of shredding other area news sources. Many wanted me to expand on that aspect. Simply, I have no interest in that. We do our best every week and that is the only thing I have any control over.

So just like with the parade, let’s look ahead and press on.

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It has taken many months, but I finally heard back from the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario regarding my appeal of Town of Grimsby refusing to release any aspect of its third party investigation into alleged issues related to the Town’s CAO.

It was acknowledged a file has been opened and the process to follow has been outlined for me. A mediator will be assigned for a mediation stage and follow up will go from there.

I don’t know anything else at this point, but I get a ton of questions on that, so that thought I would provide a little update.

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