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MUST, MUST, MUST: Fall 2017

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Brush up your Fox Trot on October 28 for a trip down memory lane to the big band sound of The Commodores, under the baton of Andy Sparling. It’s the 90th anniversary of the band, and they’re the special guests at The Hastings County Historical Society’s annual banquet, held at the National Air Force Museum in Trenton – they’ll be playing in the shadow of the Halifax bomber!

At its height, the band played four and five times a week for 1,500 dancers. You can learn more juicy tidbits about The Commodores in Sparling’s anniversary book, which will be launched the same night.

The Commodores 90th Anniversary Show
National Air Force Museum, Trenton
October 28
Tickets are $65, available at Pinnacle Music and
Quinte Arts Council office, Belleville and at Bruinix
Jewellers, Trenton.



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A symposium about trees sounds like it could be…hmm, academic. But the Trenton Woodlot Conference is more hands-on. Hosted by Hastings Stewardship Council and partners, the 28th annual event focuses on the value of a woodlot. Many of us who live in the country have stands of trees on our land that we appreciate for their aesthetic beauty and, in some cases, as fuel for the fireplace or wood stove. But this day-long event will take us deeper into the forest. The keynote – “The many values of a woodlot/forest” – is by Dr. Warren Mabee, Director of Queen’s University’s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy. Foresters Steve D’Eon and Ken Elliot will offer a talk called “Accelerating old-growth features in your hardwood stand”. There will also be a demonstration of a portable sawmill, and a field trip to the Gareth Metcalfe property to learn about trail construction, tree identification, maple sugaring and wood products.

Trenton Woodlot Conference
Batawa Community Centre
81 Plant St., Batawa
November 24, 8am-4pm
For registration and information:
contact Matt Caruana at 613-391-9034 or visit



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Little did Marie Dressler know she would spawn a vintage film festival more than half a century after her death, but here it is in its 25th year. What began as a fundraiser with a single Dressler movie to restore her fire-ravaged birthplace in Cobourg, is now a weekend packed with films, some of them silent with live piano accompaniment. It may not be the TIFF red carpet, but there’s an opening gala, a silent auction and a special talk by critic Geoff Pevere. The line-up includes Dr. No, In the Heat of the Night, Rear Window and many more, and all proceeds go to the Marie Dressler Foundation, which provides bursaries for Northumberland high school students. Pick up a festival pass for $80 and settle in for a weekend of fun.

Vintage Film Festival
Capitol Theatre, Port Hope
Oct. 13-15


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Tired of wandering through the miasma of bigbox retail? In the age of cheap, mass-produced stuff, handmade objects are transcendent, especially when they have utility – a stunning wooden bowl, colourful felted mittens, custom leather bags, sculptural jewellery, one-of-a-kind garments. If you’re looking for unique gifts, head to The Maker’s Hand in Picton. Up-and-coming artisans from Ontario and Quebec will be presenting their wares at this juried show, and you’ll have a chance to talk to them about their work. A great way to splash some colour onto November greys.

The Maker’s Hand
Picton Fairgrounds
375 Main St. E., Picton
Nov. 3 and 4, 10am-6pm; Nov. 5 10am-4pm



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Farmer Paul Burnham and Northumberland County’s Agriculture Manager Trissia Mellor have launched a new half-hour show on 89.7 FM called From the Field. It’s an informal – and revealing – conversation that slides open the barn door on farming in the region. The August 1 program, for example, featured Jack Oliver, the general manager of Empire Cheese in Campbellford. Did you know that it takes 7 ½-8 hours to make cheese? That 100 lbs. of milk produces 10 lbs. of cheese, or that the orange colour in cheddar comes from carrot juice? It’s Farming 101, free on the radio.

From the Field
Northumberland 89.7 FM
Tuesdays at 12:30pm, or download the podcast.



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Make friends and get exercise at the regular Tuesday morning guided walk at Ferris Provincial Park near Campbellford. The group meets at 9am, rain or shine, at the Suspension Bridge in the park. All you need are sneakers, walking gear and Nordic Poles, if you’re looking to work your arms. The Friends of Ferris is an energetic, non-profit group of volunteers who help maintain trails, build boardwalks and benches and generally make the park experience a beautiful one for all visitors.

Tuesday Morning Walk
Ferris Provincial Park



Current Issue - Fall 2017


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First Words

jane kelly P8191289

IT’S ALWAYS DIFFICULT TO TRANSITION FROM SUMMER INTO FALL FOR ME. I’m never prepared for the abrupt change in temperature and I’m loathe to say goodbye to the endless ease of summer days..…... read more


I enjoyed the article on the Loch-Sloy Business Park in your Summer edition. Having lived in the County for some 10 years, I was quite familiar with the old RAF....



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hairline wide 865x8CONTRIBUTORS
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carl wiens

cwportraitCarl lives in Belleville, teaches iIllustration at Sheridan College in Oakville…

meghan sheffield

Meghan Sheffield headshot

Meghan is a Cobourg writer, web producer and social media manager....

norm wagenaar

Norm DSC 0763Norm has been a reporter, photographer, editor, freelance writer and gardener....