Five examples of new uses for old barns in Ontario and beyond

Earlier this month we asked our readers for ideas for big red Bradley-Craig barn on Hazeldean Road.  Our readers responded in droves by email and social media.

Although the barn has heritage designation, it’s 140 years old and showing its age.  Finding a sustainable business idea for the barn (and the money to fund it) would go a long way to ensuring its long term survival. Continue reading


Snow expected to be cleared from roads by late afternoon, sidewalks are next

City councillor Shad Qadri provided the following update on snow clearing, from the City of Ottawa’s roads manager.

Heavy snow stopped at 5am with flurries continuing through until 11am this morning, we expect 2 cm this morning but the wind will make it look worse. We do expect fair skies with wind through the weekend with temperatures of -15 Celsius as a high. Continue reading


Jason Spezza stops in at Pesto’s Deli during his return to Ottawa

Jason Spezza was a lunchtime regular at Pesto’s Deli when he played for the Ottawa Senators. He returned to his old stomping grounds after the Dallas Stars practiced at Canadian Tire Centre on Wednesday.

Pesto’s is located at the corner of Hazeldean and Castlefrank in Kanata.


Reminder: OEB Stakeholder Forum on TransCanada’s Energy East Proposal, January 29-30

From the Ontario Energy Board.

On January 29th and 30th, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) will be hosting a stakeholder forum in Ottawa as part of its province-wide consultation on the potential impacts, both positive and negative, of TransCanada’s proposed Energy East Pipeline in Ontario. The purpose of this forum is to give members of the Province-wide Stakeholder Group the opportunity to make brief presentations that specifically address the province-wide impacts of TransCanada’s proposed Energy East pipeline. The forum will be open to the public attendance. Additional details about the stakeholder forum are available in the agenda. Continue reading


Reverie revived? Stalled condo project could continue later this year

UPDATE: The sale to the new owners closed earlier this summer; they plan to continue the development as per the approved plans, rather than start the approval process from scratch. Building could start up again in the next 6-8 months.


  • Construction on Reverie Quarters has been on hold since late  2013.
  • New owners expected to take over stalled condo project this spring.
  • Two units were sold but both buyers have been refunded.
Reverie Quarters, January 2015. Photo by Barry Gray
Reverie Quarters, January 2015. Photo by Barry Gray


Continue reading


Singer-songwriter Bruce Wozny plays Gaia Java on January 30

Bruce Wozny
Bruce Wozny

A singer-songwriter with a fondness for great songs, Bruce’s musical heroes include Gillian Welch, Tom Waits, John Prine, Dave Frishberg and Roger Miller. He has been seen playing in Ottawa recently with originals country rock band Lost Colt and Celtic-based instrumental group The Rose Trio. A little bit sweet, a little bit sour, his music explores themes of survival, forgiveness, regret and loss with a wry sense of humour and an eye for detail. (You can hear some samples of his songs at his soundclick webpage.)

He has recorded three albums of original music. His first, Pretending to be Human, is a collection of spiritual songs recorded in collaboration with Bruce Frodsham, aka Michael Manning. His second, solo effort, Boy of the Town, is a poignant and sometimes humourous examination of small town life. His third and most recent CD, Sleeping Dogs, takes a look at hidden feelings that suddenly surface. Bruce is currently playing with alt-country band “Lost Colt.

So come in out of the cold this Friday at 7:30pm and discover Bruce if you don’t know him already. It’s a good idea to come early if you want a good seat!


UPDATE: Small step in the right direction for Eagleson overpass sidewalk

City officials and staff from the Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) think they have a solution to the sidewalk problem on the Eagleson overpass, but it won’t be safe for pedestrians until at least next fall.

The sidewalk is about five centimetres too narrow for city snowplows to safely clear, and there are issues with the design of the bridge and approaches to it that make it a hazard for pedestrians.

Wilkinson attended a meeting with city staff, along with a manager of highway engineering and senior project engineer from the MTO.

Wilkinson provided this update to

“MTO is looking at how to make modifications to make the sidewalk accessible by a ramp, wide enough for a snow plow and without the drainage channel cutting across it. [We] will put together a design and discuss it with the City for implementation this year (before next winter),” says Wilkinson.

“Snow removal this year will not be to sidewalk standards but snow will be removed when the bridge is cleared leaving a packed snow area – we prefer pedestrians to not use it and may sign it that way as it will still not be safe due to the drainage cut and lack of adding grit or salt,” she says.

She also said the City is looking at fully connecting the sidewalk approach to the overpass sidewalk when it’s in place.

Brandy Duhaime, a spokesperson for the MTO, said action items coming out of the meeting include widening the paved approaches and changing the drainage on the bridge.

“We’ll work on getting this work added to another contract this summer,” said Duhaime.


PHOTO: Almonte on the Mississippi River

Barry Gray: Almonte / Mississippi River
Almonte / Mississippi River. Photo by Barry Gray.

Photographer Barry Gray writes: “Stopped in at Almonte on the way back from Pakenham and went to the Mill there.  I didn’t get the photo I was looking for…there was too much ice. But I did get this photo from the back of the Heirloom Cafe and Bistro looking up the Mississippi River, then played around quite a bit in Photoshop to make it look a bit like a painting.”

Do you have a great photo of Stittsville or the surrounding area?  You can send it to us at


Cloudy tap water today in Stittsville? It’s probably just air bubbles

Several residents reported that their tap water looked cloudy today. We asked the City of Ottawa about it, and here’s the information they provided:

At times during the year, you may find that your tap water appears cloudy. This is not a health concern. The cloudy water you are experiencing is due to finely dissolved air bubbles that are trapped in the tap water.   As the water warms up slightly in your household plumbing and pressure is reduced through your tap fixture, dissolved air will be released resulting in the “cloudy” white appearance when filling a glass.  The cloudy appearance from air bubbles should disappear within a few minutes as the air is released. To confirm this, pour some cold water into a glass and observe. You should notice the air bubbles gradually disappear from the bottom of the glass upwards, leaving a clear glass of water within 1-2 minutes – see photo below.  If the cloudiness persists, contact the City (3-1-1) to arrange for water quality testing.


Stittsville Goulbourn Horticultural Society holds annual photo contest

2014 winning entry by Marise Dube
2014 winning entry by Marise Dube


The Stittsville Goulbourn Horticultural Society is running their annual photo contest again this year.


  1. Photos will be accepted in original (CAMERA) .jpg or print format. Photo prints can be dropped off at the Stittsville, Richmond or Munster public libraries. Digital photos can be e-mailed to One e-mail entry clearly named and numbered with photo attachment per class. Please provide a self-addressed envelope (if you want to submit off line) your disc, memory stick or pictures to be returned.
  2. Memberships for new entries must be purchased before the deadline of 15 February 2015. Memberships must be in good standing for entry and include all rights and privilege for individual fee of $15.00 or $25.00 per family. Can be included with photo submission.
  3. We reserve the right to show entered images at our meetings, in our newsletters or on display in the Goulbourn Recreational Centre Trophy Case or at other public events. Used for the promotion of the Society only.
  4. Entries will be judged by an independent judge according to 40% horticultural value, 40% photographic value, and 20% impact and appearance.
  5. One entry per image.
  6. Colour and balance can be enhanced, removal or addition of images into a photo results in disqualification.
  7. The Judge’s decision is final.


  1. “Greenhouse Delights” –A plant guide to pre-season seedlings or extended season growth.
  2. “Garden Proud: A look at my garden” – Selfies accepted.
  3. “Faded Blooms” – Twisted petals, twigs, wilted or dried flowers from back, front or side view. Macros accepted.
  4. “Creations Constructed” – Flower or other seasonal arrangements.
  5. “Pollinators” – Bees our endangered friends busy at work.
  6. “Panorama” – A panoramic view of a field of any season in the Ottawa Valley.
  7. “Oh My Gourd!” – Jack O Lanterns, bumpy, knotted gourds of any size or colour.
  8. “Autumn Joy” – The best of a fall harvest….veggies.
  9. “Waves of Green” – Leaves of curly, round, light green, dark green stripes, dots on any plant, tree or bush.
  10. “Winter Scene” – Your best snow or ice covered plant, tree, leaf or bush in snow.


Stittsville man drops phone, gets a selfie from tennis star Eugenie Bouchard

(Above – Taylor Fahey is about to drop his phone as Eugenie Bouchard exits the court at the Australian Open. Photo via @pabs613)

A 23-year-old from Stittsville managed to get tennis star Eugenie Bouchard to take a selfie on his cell phone at the Australian Open last week.

Taylor Fahey and his friend Pablo Juarez were at one of Bouchard’s Australian Open match last Wednesday. As Bouchard left the court through a player’s tunnel, Fahey dropped his cell phone down to Bouchard. Continue reading


Bradley-Craig farm sits on land that’s worth $1-million per acre

(ABOVE: “Bradley-Craig Barn (detail)” – Photo by Joe Newton.)

Anyone who wants to redevelop the Bradley-Craig barn on Hazeldean Road is going to have some deep pockets.  The serviced land it’s sitting on is worth about $1-million per acre, according to city councillor Shad Qadri.

Qadri gave an update on the status of the Bradley-Craig farmstead to members of the Goulbourn Township Historical Society (GTHS) at their annual general meeting today at Stittsville United Church in Munster. Continue reading


Ivan’s kabobs have been a Stittsville favourite since 1987

(Above: Ivan Saric, owner of Ivan’s Meat and Deli. Photo by Barry Gray.)


  • Ivan Saric’s parents were from what’s now Croatia, and opened a deli in Stittsville in 1987.
  • Croatia’s food history is greatly influenced by German, Hungarian, and Italian cuisine.
  • Most meat products sold are raised locally and free of antibiotics or hormones.

Continue reading


Snowmobiles not permitted on Trans Canada Trail, says Qadri

Shad Qadri shared this note in his weekly newsletter:

Recently, residents have expressed concerns regarding the use of motorized vehicles on the Trans Canada Trail. Please note that motorized vehicles including snow mobiles are not allowed on the Trail from Terry Fox Drive to West Ridge Drive.

Please be aware that in this section of the trail it is illegal to drive any motorized vehicle including snowmobiles, pocket motorcycles and ATV’s on the Trail. Many residents use this beautiful trail as a walking path so not only does using a motorized vehicle here pose an extreme safety issue with the vehicles themselves, it also poses danger to civilians and can cause damage to the walking path. Snowmobiles are allowed to use the Trans Canada Trail west of West Ridge Drive.

If you witness anyone driving a motorized vehicle on the Trans Canada Trail, please do not hesitate to contact Ottawa Police at 613-236-1222 ext. 7300 immediately. If you can note any details such as make/colour/license plate of the machine this will help Police. Also, please ensure you inform my office about any incident of concern.


Registration now open Bell Warriors indoor football clinics

The Bell Warriors Football Club have booked 6 one-hour football clinic sessions for youth ages 8-16 the last two weeks of March and for every week in April.  No experience is required.  All you need to bring is a pair of cleats (if your child has them) and wear shorts and a t-shirt.  The cost is $10 per session or $40 for all 6.  Fees can be paid by cash, debit or credit card (no cheques please).  All registration can be done on-site when you show up.

The clinics will be held at the OZ Dome, 221 Westbrok Rd., Stittsville.  Players ages (as of December 31, 2015) will determine which group they will join.  The four groups are Tyke (ages 8-10), Mosquito (ages 11-12), Pee Wee (ages 13-14) and Bantam (ages 15-16).  Players also interested in joining the Bell Warriors Tackle Football Program can do this all on site at the same time.

Bell Warriors Winter Workouts:

Day Date Level Time
Saturday Mar-21 Tyke/Mosquito 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Saturday Mar-21 Pee Wee/Bantam 11:00 a.m. – Noon
Saturday Mar-28 Tyke/Mosquito 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Saturday Mar-28 Pee Wee/Bantam 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday Apr-01 Tyke/Mosquito 7:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Wednesday Apr-01 Pee Wee/Bantam 8:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday Apr-11 Tyke/Mosquito 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Saturday Apr-11 Pee Wee/Bantam 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Saturday Apr-18 Tyke/Mosquito 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Saturday Apr-18 Pee Wee/Bantam 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Saturday Apr-25 Tyke/Mosquito 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Saturday Apr-25 Pee Wee/Bantam 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.

For more information, email or call (613) 838-4279


Can you identify the ladies in this old photo?

EDITOR’S NOTE, JANUARY 30: The women in this photo were identified, but we’ve taken down the photo at the request of the family. Here’s the background.

Earlier this month, Carol Wittebol’s husband Ron was doing home repairs on Pullman Avenue found an old photo of four women under a cold air return cover.  They turned to Facebook to see if they could find out who was in the photo.

“Before we knew it, we had 51 shares,” says Wittebol.

One of those shares ended up reaching a Stittsville woman, whose husband recognized the people in the photo as members of his family. They got in touch with Wittebol and arranged to meet up.

They met this past Sunday and traded some stories about the women in the photo as well as the house in which they used to live.

“I must admit that this event has brought a lot of joy and fun to all of us involved and because of it, we have made some lovely new acquaintances,” Wittebol wrote to in an email.

We were all set to share some of those stories with our readers, when we were contacted today by the family of the people in the photo who asked us to remove it due to privacy concerns.

We’re happy to comply with their request.  We can’t reveal the whole story, except to say that the family who lost the photo was happy to have it back after all these years.

Some good reminders here about the power of social media to connect people together, but also the perils of social media when it comes to privacy.



UPDATE: The women in this photo have been identified. We’ll share more details soon.

From Carol Wittebol on Facebook:

“Yesterday my husband was doing some work in our bedroom which required him to remove the cold air return cover. He found a treasure in there! Well, it’s someone else’s treasure, not ours. For us, it’s more of a mystery. Do any of my friends living in our area recognize anyone in this photo? My guess its that it’s from the 70’s…..our home was formerly Fourth Avenue in Stittsville, now known as Pullman Avenue. We do know that this photo was not taken in our home. I’d love to locate someone in this photo and return it to them. Thank you friends for any light you can shed.”

If you think you know these women, please add a comment below or send us a note at and we will pass the info on to Carol.


Progress on the egress: Sens say post-game traffic measures are helping

(Press release from the Ottawa Senators.)

Canadian Tire Centre (@CdnTireCtr) and the Ottawa Senators (@Senators) announced today that their traffic management efforts, made in partnership with the City of Ottawa and Vinci Park, have significantly improved the egress times for vehicles leaving the arena following hockey games.

Working with Senators’ parking provider Vinci Park, traffic monitoring statistics have reported that since the implementation of these traffic upgrades, which include traffic flow changes both northbound and southbound on Huntmar Drive and the expansion of Highway 417, egress of the entire network has improved by more than 14 per cent, with certain lots experiencing exit time improvements in excess of 30 per cent.

“We’re excited by the results of the measures we have put in place to increase the speed of egress from the building following hockey games,” said Senators president Cyril Leeder. “The feedback from our fans and season-seat members has been overwhelmingly positive and it is clear to us that faster egress has improved the entire Senators’ game experience. We are encouraged by the progress that these changes have created and we will continue to work hard to make the entire driving, parking and game experience better for our fans going forward.”

In addition to the traffic flow changes, the Senators continue to make a number of enhancements to the game experience as part of the #SensVision25 initiative. Last fall, the organization began a repaving program that will see all of the parking lots outside of Canadian Tire Centre resurfaced. The work began late in 2014 and will continue into the summer of 2015. In addition to the repaving, new digital payment technology has been installed in all parking lots, which has enabled fans the added convenience to pay by cash, debit or major credit card.

All Canadian Tire Centre infrastructure changes specific to parking and traffic flow are geared to help improve fan ingress and egress as well as the overall parking experience for patrons coming to Canadian Tire Centre for Senators games and other events.


UPDATE: When is a sidewalk not a sidewalk?

Why can’t snow be cleared from the sidewalk on the Eagleson Road overpass?

The Ontario Ministry of Transportation (MTO) and the City of Ottawa are both blaming each other for what’s become a very dangerous situation for pedestrians who use the bridge that connects Kanata North and Kanata South.

We asked city councillor Marianne Wilkinson and the MTO about a few of the issues. Their responses are collected below.

Continue reading