LINKED: Stittsvegas podcast “When I was your age!”

This week’s Stittsvegas podcast by Devyn Barrie is well worth a listen.  Highlights include an interview with Deborah Brummell about growing up in Stittsville in the 1980s, Sacred Heart’s Relay for Life fundraiser, and a play by Sacred Heart students that raised $600 for CHEO’s mental health unit.  You can listen to the podcast here…



Food Bank abuzz about partnership with Gees Bees Honey

(ABOVE: Matthew Gee, Co-Founder of Gees Bees Honey Company, holding up part of a bee hive. Photo by Barry Gray.)

The Ottawa Food Bank unveiled a new beehive on Wednesday at their Community Harvest farming project on Mansfield Road near Stittsville.

Thanks to a grant from JustChange Ottawa, the Gees Bees Honey Company has teamed up with the food bank to install the beehive. The honeybees who call this new hive their home will help pollinate the crops and will also produce honey that Gees Bees will sell to benefit the food bank. Continue reading


City begins planning for light rail extension to Kanata

A large group of politicians showed up at the Terry Fox transit station today for what was billed as “an important announcement regarding Ottawa’s future transit options”.  The announcement turned out to be about launching a study to look at extending light rail from Bayshore to Kanata sooner than planned.

The City and federal government will split a tab of at least $2-million for the Environmental Assessment (EA) study, which will take a couple years to complete. Continue reading


Fundraiser on June 25 to help Yakabuski family #YakStrong

(PHOTO: Mark and April Yakabuski and with their three boys.)

Sometimes life can change in the blink of an eye. Such was the case for the Yakabuski family last month.

As many of you in the community may have heard Mark Yakabuski, 42, suffered a freak accident while golfing that resulted in a serious spinal injury. Continue reading


A round-up of Stittsville summer camps

A few summer camps in the Stittsville area:

Thunderbird Sports Camp
We cater to everyone, including today’s busy parents and active children. We offer a wide range of sports for children aged 5 – 12 in a fun, supervised environment. Kids get to try golf, archery, soccer, basketball, volleyball, dodgeball, touch football, water games and much more fun, while parents benefit from the included pre/post care, and never having to worry about rain day cancellations, guaranteed. With our covered sports domes, rainy days are just indoor sports days for us. And because Thunderbird Sports Centre has a family-friendly golf course on site, we can offer an unmatched sports experience. The campers also get lunch included.
More info:

Photography Teen Summer Camps
These camps offer a great opportunity for students to learn about photography and editing in a fun, hands-on environment. Each camp offers small groups to ensure quality instruction and supervision. The camps and associated activities are run by a professional photographer with 19 years teaching experience. The students will learn about photography and their cameras, and will have ample time to practice, both in the studio and outside. The Stittsville studio is located in walking distance to trails and parks. All students will receive an 8”x10” framed print of their work at the end of the week. More info:

The Ultimate Competitive Dance Camp
This camp is open to ANY competitive dancer ages 5-15.  It doesn’t matter what studio you are a part of as long as you share the love of dance!  This camp is not as much about dance as it is the dancer.  We work so hard on the outside to train our muscles to learn technique.  What about the inside?  This camp is about balance.  We bring coaching, motivational speaking, encouragement and knowledge to your dancer.  They will do stretch, conditioning and fitness every day as well as technique with a variety of dance styles.  Every day we will be working on all the aspects of being a great overall dancer such as being mentally prepared for competition as well as being positive with emphasis on respect, attitude and building stronger relationships. This camp takes place at the Creative Edge Dance Academy (CEDA) at 2710 Carp Road just north of Richardson Side Road.
More info:

Stittsville Royals Hockey Camp
July 4-8, for kids between the ages of 8-10.  Every day includes 2 hours of ice time (afternoon sessions), as well as off ice activities such as off-ice conditioning and video review sessions of skating techniques. Campers will receive a jersey, water bottle, and Stittsville Royals hockey tickets upon arrival on Monday. Additional outdoor activities are also included. Kids will have the opportunity to participate in a variety of sports throughout the week, including soccer, basketball, volleyball, tag football, etc.  The camp is led by members of the Stittsville Royals Junior A (Tier 2) coaching staff and assisted by the teams players. All camp leaders have completed either the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP) Level 1, or Hockey Development 1, and have played and/or coached competitive hockey at the Junior A and Junior B levels. First Aid and CPR certified personnel will also be present.
At Kanata Recreation Complex, 100 Walter Baker Place.
More info:


(Send us info about your summer camp. Must be in Stittsville please!


GAIA JAVA: Double bill with Keli and Jad, followed by Missioner

This Friday we present some local young artists who offer a range of familiar and developing music.

Keli Jay and Jad Hammoud
Keli Jay and Jad Hammoud

Many of you will know Keli Jay as one of the most long-standing baristas (get it, standing for a long time…!) in the shop. So she is back from her Queens University musical degree studies for a few months, and is teaming up with fellow ex-Canterbury High School singer Jad Hammoud to bring you some familiar cover songs at this week’s music night. Keli has played in the shop on several previous occasions but you will enjoy some of the arrangements of acoustic covers that she and Jad have worked out for you.


Then in the second half of the evening you have an opportunity to hear up and coming local band Missioner, who describe themselves as follows: From the streets of Ottawa, four high school students have joined forces together to form what today is known as the band MISSIONER; a band surrounded by a close-knit community where everyone knows everyone, the members have drawn inspiration for their band name from one of the schools in the area.

The four-piece alternative rock group gathers their inspirational roots from 90s alternative bands such as Blink 182, Smashing Pumpkins, Weezer and Jimmy Eat World. Working together as a collective during their songwriting process, the band brings lyrical content and instrumental harmonies that speak honest and true to not only their own personal experiences but performing content that anyone amongst the crowd can relate to.

MISSIONER remain hard at work developing new material for their fans who can look forward to hearing new and inventive music now and into the distant future.

Keli and Jad and Missioner play on Friday, June 10 at 7:00pm at Gaia Java on Stittsville Main Street.

-Paul Jay


Collision at Carp and Hazeldean injures three seniors

Emergency services teams responded to a collision around noon today at Carp and Hazeldean between a car and a pick-up truck.

Paramedics treated three occupants in the car. A 77-year-old woman had a fractured arm and possible internal injuries and is in serious but stable condition.  An 80-year-old woman and 81-year-old man suffered minor injuries The 21-year-old driver of the pick-up truck had minor injuries, according to paramedics. Continue reading


It’s probably not a cougar that you saw in Stittsville

(ABOVE: Neighbours on Savage Drive think this paw print may be from a cougar. Photo via Pat Goyette.)

It’s not impossible, but it’s unlikely there are any cougars wandering around Stittsville, despite recent reports of exactly that. In fact, there hasn’t been a confirmed sighting of a wild cougar in this province for 132 years.

We’ve been reading about a few possible cougar sightings in the area on social media. Late in May, neighbours on Savage Drive (south of Hazeldean) reported spotting what they thought was a cougar coming out of Amberway Park.  They posted these footprints.

Residents on Savage Drive took these photos of footprints after they saw that they thought was a cougar.

Residents on Savage Drive took these photos of footprints after they saw that they thought was a cougar.
Photos via Pat Goyette.


We forwarded the photographed footprints to Kamal Khidas, Curator of Vertebrate Zoology at the Canadian Museum of Nature. Khidas said the photographs were too poor quality to have any certainty, but there was no clear indication the prints came from a cougar. He suggested it may have come from a wolf instead.

A wolf is just one of dozens of animals people could confuse for a cougar, says Jane Devlin, management biologist with the Kemptville office of the Ministry of Natural Resources.

“I think the common animals that are confused and mistakenly identified as a cougar could be a white-tailed deer, dog, domestic cat, a bobcat, even a fisher… it could be any number of those.”

She says the ministry receives reports of cougars all the time, but there’s never solid evidence to confirm one – not since 1884, the last confirmed sighting of a wild cougar.

Devlin didn’t rule out the possibility of an escaped cougar from captivity, for example from a zoo or an exotic pet owner. If there were any around Ottawa, trail cams would likely have taped them.

Whether it’s a cougar or not, Devlin said there are important safety tips to keep in mind in case you are confronted by a wild animal. Face it directly, back away slowly, make lots of noise and try to appear larger than you actually are.

And please, no cougar jokes. We’ve heard them all.


Stitt Park snapping turtle is back!

Thanks to Karla Torres for the heads up about the return of the Stitt Park turtle, spotted by several people yesterday morning. The photo above is from Jean-Michel Bastien, via Facebook.

Could this be the same turtle who buried her eggs in the sand last summer? Torres and her family saw a turtle laying eggs, then helped build an enclosure to protect the nest.  A few weks later the community got involved to protect it after vandals destroyed the structure.  When the turtles hatched in September, neighbours helped move them to safety in nearby Poole Creek.  (Read more, plus cute baby turtle photos here…) Continue reading


Parents asked to sign new public high school petition this weekend

Jennifer Smith (left) and Jenny Guth along with other parents in the community have started a new petition calling for a public high school for Stittsville.

A provincial politician has promised parents that she’ll present a petition to Queen’s Park this week for a new public high school.

Barrhaven MPP Lisa MacLeod met with parents on Friday, and told them that she would raise the issue at Question Period at Queen’s Park.  She says she wants a petition with at least two pages of signatures that she can bring with her to demonstrate support from the community. Continue reading


THIS WEEKEND: Arts in the Park, Doors Open Ottawa and garage sales galore

It’s another busy weekend in Ottawa’s most exciting suburb. On Sunday afternoon, more than 60 professional and amateur artists, writers, culinary specialists, musicians, and other creators will bring their work to Village Square Park for the annual Arts in the Park exhibition, presented by the Stittsville Village Association. (UPDATE: Arts in the Park has been cancelled due to rain, and will be rescheduled for August.)

The Goulbourn Museum and the Sterling Howie Firehall (Station 81) are participating in Doors Open Ottawa.

There’s another “doors open” of sorts at the Goulbourn Lawn Bowling Club.  They’re holding their annual “open day” on Saturday from 9:30 – 1:00. More info…

On Friday and Saturday, the Stittsville Lions are collecting beer, wine, cooler bottles or cans for diabetes and for Camp Banting, Canada’s oldest operating camp for kids with diabetes. More info…

And then there are the garage sales:

Tell us about your upcoming event by visiting



Kanata Academy breaks ground at 180 Huntmar

Sod-turning ceremony at Kanata Academy, June 1, 2016. from left to right: Dr. Kevin Rattray, Mrs. Shannon Rattray, Peter Gregor, Director of Development at Nautical Lands Group, Councillor Shad Qadri.
From left to right: Owners Kevin Rattray and Shannon Rattray, Peter Gregor, Director of Development at Nautical Lands Group, Stittsville Councillor Shad Qadri.

The Kanata Academy held a groundbreaking ceremony at their new location at 180 Huntmar Road on Wednesday evening. The school is currently located in the Beaverbrook Mall in Kanata and has 104 students from preschool to Grade 12. They’re planning to move to Stittsville by January 2017 and looking forward to being in their own building.

The school will be on a two-acre property that was formerly a house, and before that part of a large farm known as Glen Eden. The academy purchased the property in July 2015 from the stepfather of a student.


Bryanston Gate community meeting on June 16

Neighbours in the Bryanston Gate community are organizing a meeting on Thursday, June 16.

“Join us, your neighbours, to discuss some current municipal issues. From local concerns, such as repurposing the northern end of Johnwoods Street into a linear park, to changes in the City of Ottawa’s water rate structure, we need to be in on the discussion.

This meeting is completely community-led, and will have a loosely structured agenda. After all, the purpose is to determine what the collective neighbourhood wants to discuss. We’ll also gauge interest in establishing regularly scheduled meetings, or perhaps even a more formal community association.

Whether a formal group is established or not, the ability to communicate with one another inclusively and efficiently is important.”

The meeting will be held at 7:00pm at the Carolark Canine Training Centre (5933 Hazeldean) in the lower level classroom – please use the back entrance off Hartin Street.

You can also sign up to the Bryanston Gate Community E-mail List by sending a request to:

For more information you can use the email above or call 613-816-0166.

Neighbours organizing the meeting include Alison, Shelley & David Lynch, Carol and Mike Lenz and Cherlene McEnery.


Two Stittsville buildings are on this year’s Doors Open list

(via City of Ottawa)

Celebrating its 15th anniversary, Doors Open Ottawa continues to be the second-largest Doors Open architectural event in North America.  Since its inception in 2002, over 850,000 visitors have discovered some of the city’s most prestigious buildings including Earnscliffe: Official Residence of the British High Commissioner, the Supreme Court of Canada, the Embassy of the United States, and the Connaught Building….just to name a few. Continue reading


WTF are PXOs? All about the city’s new pedestrian crossovers

(PHOTO: The City will be adding even more signage to roundabouts as part of their new PXO or “Pedestrian Crossover” program. The signs are up at Huntmar-Rosehill, waiting to be unveiled later this month.)

Ottawa drivers are just too polite for roundabouts.

In most jurisdictions, cars have the right of way over pedestrians at a roundabout.  But City of Ottawa studies suggest that 50-70% of vehicles are currently yielding to pedestrians as a courtesy, even though they’re not supposed to.

By the end of this month, the city will soon be lifting the veil at the Huntmar-Rosehill roundabout on what they’re calling “PXOs” or “pedestrian crossovers”.  It’s part of a bid to make roundabouts and other road crossings safer for pedestrians.  (UPDATE: The roundabout at Fernbank and Shea, as well as Robert Grant Ave. will also be converted to include PXOs.) Continue reading