Parents persist in push for public high school

ABOVE: Jennifer Smith recorded a video urging parents to attend a public school board meeting on Tuesday to support a public high school in Stittsville.

(press release & video via Stittsville Public High School Now)

Finally, it’s happened! The Ottawa-Carleton District School Board has placed the building of a new public high school in Stittsville at the top of their priority funding list – however this does not mean the Ministry of Education will allocate the funds for this essential capital project. This is where we need the media and the public’s help.
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LINKED: Transgender Stittsville tween takes part in federal announcement

Ten-year-old Charlie Lowthian-Rickert from Stittsville stood alongside Justice Minister Judy Wilson-Raybould on Tuesday when she introduced a bill to prevent discrimination and hate crimes based on gender identity and gender expression.

“Transphobic people don’t have enough information about who we really are. They don’t know that we’re the exact same as them,” she told CBC. “What I’m trying to do is raise awareness for transgender people.” Continue reading


NOTEBOOK: Fairwinds Fort McMurray fundraiser, Stittsville high school, more

On Thursday, May 26 at noon, Food Basics, Dollar Tree and The Grounds Café will be hosting a free BBQ.  Food Basics will provide the burgers and hot dogs, Dollar Tree will provide condiments, plates, cutlery and cups and The Grounds will serve coffee. Continue reading


Two new buildings proposed for Shoppes at Fairwinds

5075 Hazeldean Road site plan with two proposed new buildings.
The revised site plan for 5075 Hazeldean includes two new buildings, shown on the map in yellow. One retail building along Huntmar north of the Shoppers Drug Mart, and a drive-thru restaurant on the east side along Hazeldean. Many of the pre-approved buildings shown on the map have yet to be constructed.


The City of Ottawa has received a site plan proposal for two new buildings in the Shoppes at Fairwinds shopping area, at 5705 Hazeldean in front of the Food Basics.

The proposal is to add a retail building just north of the existing Shoppers Drug Mart, and a restaurant / drive-thru on the east end of the site along Hazeldean Road. Continue reading


The Grants of Goulbourn are returning

(Photo: Family of Robert and Eliza Grant, standing left to right John, James, and William. Seated: Bessie (Mrs John Gourlay), Robert and Mary (Mrs William Templeton) from the GTHS Photo Archives HAZ081)

Goulbourn’s very own raconteur and actor, John Curry, will be bringing to life a history of the “Grants of Goulbourn” at the Goulbourn Township Historical Society May event. He will, through his video, printed documents and remarks, give a historical account of Robert Grant and his son Robert Henry Grant – two gentlemen of prominence from Goulbourn Township who resided in Stittsville.

Detail from the 1853 Wallin Map.
Detail from the 1853 Wallin Map.  Much of the Grant family’s land on lots 27 and 28 is now part of the Fairwinds neighbourhood and Grant’s Crossing shopping centre.

Born in 1793 in Ireland, Robert Grant settled on Hazeldean Road in 1818 as one of our earliest settlers. He was a farmer with foresight – dealing both in potash and lumber – and farmed using progressive practices. He was Goulbourn’s first representative on the 1842 Carleton District Council; a militia Captain in the battles of Ogdensburg and Windmill in the late 1830s; and a warden in the Hazeldean Anglican Church on Young Sideroad off of Hazeldean.

In 1832 he built a stone Georgian-style farmhouse in the area of the Fairwinds neighbourhood. This home was later brutally damaged in the great Carleton County Fire of August 1870 – where and when Robert Grant sadly lost his life. His widow restored the home and it remained until 1992.

Robert Grant House was destroyed by the 1870, then restored. It survived until 1992.
Robert Grant House was destroyed by the 1870, then restored. It survived until 1992.

Robert Henry Grant (Robert Grant’s son) was not only an important Goulbourn and Stittsville community member, but was elected by the United Farmers of Ontario in the Carleton Riding as a Provincial Member of Parliament and went on to become Ontario’s Minister of Education in 1919 until 1923. He also was a member of Carleton County Council for several terms; county auditor; the local license commissioner; a property evaluator for both Agriculture Canada and National Defence; and a Deputy Reeve for Goulbourn Township. He was instrumental, working with others, in establishing the Hazeldean Rural Telephone Company. He was Master of Richmond’s Masonic Goodwood Lodge; charter member of the Masonic Hazeldean Lodge in 1914 and District Deputy Grand Masonic Master for the Ottawa area in 1917.

The Robert H. Grant home was built in 1885 on land that was expropriated and now known as Grant Crossing on Hazeldean Road.
The Robert H. Grant home was built in 1885 on land that was expropriated and now known as Grant Crossing on Hazeldean Road.

To find out more about the history of these two Grant gentlemen, you have to attend John’s energetic presentation on Saturday, May 21, at 1:30 p.m. at the Stittsville Legion Hall. I promise all who attend will not be disappointed!!

There will be free refreshments available for all, the Legion is handicapped accessible and remember to bring your friends and neighbours to learn and share in another chapter of Goulbourn’s history.


What’s happening with the Maple Grove link to Jackson Trails?

Today, the west end of Maple Grove Road is just a dead-end dumping ground for construction waste and dog poop bags. Someday, it could be a road connection to Stittsville Main Street.

It’s an idea that’s been talked about for several years, and it shows up from time to time on planning maps, but there’s no specific timeline.

It came up recently during the discussions about Minto’s Potter’s Key subdivision. Some homeowners in Jackson Trails have suggested that Maple Grove could provide a second exit from their community, although many residents don’t want it opened up just yet. Continue reading


VIDEO: How Hydro Ottawa moved 20 poles in a day along Maple Grove

(Editor’s note: Here are some photos, text and a video shared by Hydro Ottawa, with background on Saturday’s pole-moving project on Maple Grove. Hydro Ottawa is proactively moving the poles to accomodate future road widening, currently slated for after 2013 in the City’s transportation master plan.)

Twenty-five employees, six contracting staff, 20 poles, 12 hours, one Pole Claw, one day. These are the numbers required to successfully complete hydro pole relocation on Maple Grove Road on Saturday, May 14, due to a road widening project. Continue reading


ALC honours former student with new Buddy Bench

(Photo: The Jude family, left to right: Steve, Mason (8), Colby (6) and Dev. They’re sitting on a Buddy Bench at A. Lorne Cassidy elementary school named in memory of Bryce Jude, who passed away in 2012 after a battle with leukemia. Photo via A. Lorne Cassidy School.)

The family of Bryce Jude helped students at A. Lorne Cassidy school unveil a new “Buddy Bench” named in his honour. Jude passed away in 2012 at the age of 7 after a battle with leukemia.

“It’s nice to know his memory will hopefully live on,” says his mother Dev Jude. The Jude family, including Dev’s husband Steve and Bryce’s brothers Mason and Colby, were on hand for the unveiling on Thursday.

“It has been happy. For anyone who loses a child, it’s always nice when you can remember them. Your biggest fear is that they may be forgotten,” says Jude.

She says that the school originally planned to plant a tree in memory of Bryce until she heard about Buddy Benches being installed at other schools. She credits ALC principal Andrew Canham for his support and leadership to make it happen.

“A tree would have been lovely. I asked the principal: ‘What do you think of this idea instead of a tree?’ And that’s what we did. They painted it red because it was Bryce’s favourite colour – the Sens were his favourite team and they came to CHEO to see him,” she says.

“The rules surrounding this bench, called a ‘Buddy Bench’, are pretty simple. Within a few minutes, any student sitting on the bench will to approached by a fellow student and asked to play. In simpler terms, when you don’t have anyone to play with, you go to the Buddy Bench and a friend will come along to play,” explained Canham at the unveiling ceremony for the bench.

Bryce Jude
Bryce Jude

Bryce was diagnosed with leukemia a month into Junior Kindergarten, and ended up missing most of the year while he was getting treatment. He attended school for a few months in Senior Kindergarten, and then started his Grade 1 year when he had a relapse. Although he would never return to school, he continued to do schoolwork from home with the support of his teachers.

Meanwhile, the school community organized fundraising events to help the family. Neither Jude nor her husband Steve were able to work because of the time and travel spent helping Bryce in the hospital. Dev Jude says that they were incredibly grateful for the support from friends and family, and their efforts have inspired her family to continue to give back.

“We’ve formed Refuse2lose, initially formed when my husband and I both could not work. [Friends] did some fundraising when Bryce was sick and my only requirement for accepting it was that we would pay it back in time. We try to raise $50,000 each year,” she says.

The entire family gets involved. Bryce’s brothers Mason and Colby took part this week in the Inside Ride, an indoor stationary cycling fundraiser that raised $120,000 towards Candlelighters, in support kids and teens treated at CHEO who are living with cancer.

Dev Jude’s remarks at the opening ceremony on Thursday:
I’m so excited to be here today. Originally, we were going to plant a tree in memory of Bryce and while this was a lovely idea I was reading in the newspaper about a 2nd grader called Christian who had heard about the Buddy Bench all the way from Germany. He presented the idea to his principal who loved the idea – now these Buddy Benches are being installed all across North America. I believe A Lorne Cassidy is the first school in Stittsville to have a Buddy Bench installed and it’s so very special to our family that this bench is in memory of Bryce. He loved school and even though he wasn’t always at school he had a teacher from ALC come to teach him at home and he loved receiving all the cards and support many of you and your families sent him while he was at CHEO.

Making friends or asking a friend to play can be hard sometimes, especially if you are new to the school or your usual friends are not around. If ever you don’t have a friend to play with during recess or feel a bit lonely, all you now have to do is go sit on the bench.

And then this is where ALL of you get to help – each and every person – if you happen to see someone at the bench – ask them if they want to join in your game or come play. Or maybe just check in with them to see if they are OK.

There was a saying on one of the benches that I loved and said “The only way to have a friend is to be one”. Put your hands up if you think you can be a friend? Great! Each and every one of you will help to make this Buddy Bench work – it’s up to all of you and I am confident you will all do a great job as I see how caring and what great friends you all are.

I know Bryce would be happy to see this bench and I love the fact that his brothers Mason and Colby can have it here during their time at ALC. Thank you all so much for honouring Bryce in this way and enjoy the bench!


LETTER: Hold planning staff accountable for “epic fail”

Re: Qadri and planners get rough ride over Johnwoods “proposal”

As a former political staffer to Bob Chiarelli from 1987 – 1990 and again in 1999, I have seen some great work down by bureaucrats at the provincial level and at the former Region of Ottawa-Carleton (ROC). I went out of my way to thank staff when they were of assistance to the MPP and then Regional Chair as well as helping me in my role. Continue reading


PIECE OF CAKE: Best-of photos from school cakewalk fundraisers

It’s cake walk season! Several schools in our area have been holding their annual cakewalk fundraisers, where parents and students exercise their artistic cake-making skills.

And the icing on the cake? The creations get auctioned or raffled off to raise money for the schools.  Continue reading


Little Free Library opens on Friendly Crescent

Amanda Faulkner and her daughter Maëlle. Photo by Christine Vezarov.

Make a left turn from Hartsmere Dr. onto Friendly Crescent and you’ll see the bright yellow picnic table and turquoise mailbox with painted butterflies that are visited by members of the community every day.

A few weeks ago, Amanda Faulkner and her family filled their take-a-book-leave-a-book exchange with over a dozen books in front of their home on 9 Friendly Crescent. Continue reading


Explosion and fire destroy four street sweepers on Faulkner Trail

(via Ottawa Fire)

At around 4:00am on Friday, Ottawa Fire received multiple 911 calls of an explosion in a parking lot and flames visible at the intersection of Faulkner Trail and Eagleson Rd.

On arrival there were multiple vehicles fully involved with exposure buildings close by. A working fire was declare immediately in order to have extra apparatus to protect the exposures. The fire was under control as of 4:30am.

At this time the vehicles fully involved are four street sweepers.

Ottawa Police Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service, Enbridge and Hydro are responding. No firefighter injuries or civilian injuries at this time.

The cause at this time is unknown and estimated damages are not known.



Meet the nominees and winners of this year’s Stittsville appreciation awards

(via Councillor Shad Qadri)

The eight annual Stittsville Appreciation Awards were announced on Tuesday evening.  The awards highlight remarkable community builders and the spirit of volunteerism. Councillor Qadri’s office received 35 nominations among the four categories.

“It is a privilege to have so many dedicated members of our community serve as examples for us all, along with residents who have taken the time to express their appreciation by nominating a deserving individual,” he said.

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