Posts in Making Our Town Better
Earth Day

In recognition of this year’s Earth Day on Monday, April 22nd, take a moment to ask yourself: how can I live a greener lifestyle or be more eco-friendly?

Being mindful of your environmental impact is easy, and good for the community as well as the planet! Doing your part is as easy as making some of these habits: put litter in the right receptacle, bring your reusable bags to the grocery store, avoid single-use plastic, eat more plants, shop local, walk or ride instead of drive, and reduce waste by bringing your own travel mug and reusable water bottle when you’re out and about.

On social media, the hashtag #trashtag is trending for posts sharing pictures of outdoor spaces before and after someone has cleaned it up and made it free of litter and garbage. Are there any areas in our community that could use the #trashtag treatment?

Take a before picture, clean the space up, take an after picture, and post it to social media. It’s that simple! Use the hashtags #trashtag and #funinfenelon in order to earn 3 entries in this month’s contest and to be shared on our social media channels. The prize this month is $50 - help the environment and you could win.

This Earth Day, let’s all commit to keeping Fenelon beautiful, and after this month keep the public cleanup trend alive: bring a bag of litter cleaned up from a public space in town to Julia at the Country Cupboard in exchange for a free frozen yogurt!

Featured Event - Easter Eggstravaganza

It’s time to spring into the season and shake off the cold. On Saturday, April 20th, The Fenelon Falls & District Chamber of Commerce is hosting annual favourite event, Easter Eggstravaganza. Children will search the town with a map of participating sponsors from 10 am to 1 pm to collect stamps which are redeemed for treat bags at the Easter Bunny Headquarters. Additional family friendly activities include crafts, face painting, cookie decorating, and a bunny petting zoo. We hope to see you there!

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Celebrating Grr8 Finds: 10 Years in Business

Submitted by Anna Radey

Fenelon Falls has always been a unique destination for visitors. Tourists and locals alike are often enamoured with the variety of attractions within the boundaries of our small town. However, at its core, Fenelon is all about the people who make each and every visitor feel special and welcome.

One of the town’s greatest ambassadors is Randy at Grr8 Finds. His store is located in the heart of downtown and has been in operation since February 2009. Given his passion for antiques, it was only natural that he would eventually expand his business to include over 50 vendors and 1900 consignments. His venture has been so successful, that he was one of the first businesses in Fenelon Falls to start practicing standardized hours, (7 days a week, 364 days a year), which has proven to be quite effective. With many small businesses getting their start from being a vendor at Gr88 Finds, Tim Wisener of the Colborne Street Gallery notes that Randy “may be one of the most effective small business incubators within the City.”

Grr8 Finds offers up a visual wonder of unique items for all occasions and tastes. The vendor spaces are stocked with items of all sizes, with enough variety to fit any budget. Randy has a desire to ensure that everyone finds what they are looking for. His store even includes a candy counter for the local children, and those who are young at heart. Randy said his favourite thing about the store is “making memories. From the kids growing up as they come in to get candy, to the customers who purchase something and come back to tell me what they have done with it.”

Along with being a pillar of the business community, Randy is also a staunch ally of the LGBTQ community, and is often the provider of a safe space for teens to come and share their thoughts and perspectives, as well as perhaps gain a little wisdom along the way. Dakota Tilling, a student at Fenelon Falls Secondary School who stops in to see Randy nearly every day, notes that when Randy offers life advice or encouragement, “it’s always been very, very helpful. And he always seems to go out of his way to make sure that everyone else is happy. One thing he offers is a safe place for high school students to go if they’re having a rough time. You just go and sit on the bench at his candy store and you’re good.”

As we celebrate Randy’s 10th anniversary in Fenelon Falls, we wish him continued prosperity, both as an entrepreneur, as well as a supporter of the local community. If you find yourself downtown, be sure to stop in and congratulate Randy. You might even walk out with a little treasure of your own!


Featured Event - Retail Refresh

You're Invited to the Retail Refresh Training Series with esteemed Barbara Crowhurst. Barbara is North America's #1 Retail Business Coach, specializing in helping retailers run effective and profitable businesses.

"If there is any way you can attend a Barbara Crowhurst session and bring your key employees with you, you really should!" - The Kawartha Store

Your investment of $50 + tax includes 3 value-packed sessions:

  1. Session 1, April 23rd - Learn how to achieve your year end sales goals, market your business effectively, and increase the frequency of customers coming into your store. Barbara will also introduce you to the Retail Makeover Buying Budget system.

  2. Session 2, May 7th - Discover how to create the ultimate shopping experience your customers want through effective store design and product placement, and creating a service culture that inspires sales.

  3. Session 3, October - The final session will provide a quick check up and includes valuable tips and insights to increase your holiday traffic and sales.

2 lucky winners will win a one-on-one retail makeover with Barbara Crowhurst - valued at over $1700 each!

"Barbara gave me tools and knowledge to take my small business to the next level. The changes I have implemented have proven to be a huge success" - The Butterfly Boutique

For more information and to register, visit retailrefresh.eventbrite.ca

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Volunteer Week 2019 - Let's clean the park!

This week, April 7-13, is National Volunteer Week!

Fenelon is such an amazing community - we are full of people who volunteer their time and efforts with different groups and events that make our community special. From Canada Day to Santa Day, the shopping district merchant events like Midnight Madness and Diva Night, Films by the Falls, the Horticultural Society, the Downtown Revitalization Committee, Lion’s Club fundraisers - and so many others! Volunteerism and community spirit is alive and well here in Fenelon Falls.

For the last several years, the Take Back the Beach committee has worked hard to clean the Garnet Graham park and beach area of goose poop. This effort has made a huge impact; each year, “geese leavings” create unsanitary conditions for public beaches and swimming areas, and they are often closed as a result.

Keeping the area clean allows for everyone who visits the park, beach, and splashpad to enjoy the sunny summer days in town.

The Take Back the Beach committee is in danger of shutting down, and needs more volunteers this year if they are going to be able to continue this valiant effort of cleaning our beaches! It’s easier than it sounds, and it just might be the most noble volunteer opportunity in town. Helping out to take back the beach is a good excuse to get out for a walk, and this is also a perfect opportunity for high school students to complete their mandatory community service hours.

If you are interested or able to help out at all, please email takebackthebeachff@gmail.com. Let’s try to keep our beaches and public swimming areas open again this season!

Memorial Tribute to Ross Hawe

Ross Hawe, who was an honourary lifetime member of the Fenelon Falls and District Chamber of Commerce, left a large impact on our community. One of the founding members of the Kawartha Lakes Country Living Show, Ross used past experience from his career with GM and the auto shows he organized there in order to make significant improvements to our local home show, helping to make it a successful annual event which continues to grow and attract visitors to our community year after year.

Ross’ volunteerism has been called “integral” to so many of the events we enjoy in town; he volunteered with the Events Committee that presents Midnight Madness and other events, as well as with the Santa Day committee, and the Board of Directors for the Chamber of Commerce.

Ross was known as a commensurate professional, who commanded respect by respecting others in turn. We will affectionately remember Ross and take inspiration from his efforts to improve our community as we all pick up that torch and continue doing our best to keep Fenelon a fun and growing community.

Thank you, Ross.

Call for Volunteers - Kawartha Lakes Country Living Show

Submitted by Marylee Boston

Spring is here and there's no better way to get out and connect with friends and neighbours than volunteering at the 35th Annual Country Living Show. Bring your smile, your enthusiasm and your love for Fenelon Falls to help us make this another great showcase for our local businesses, artisans and community groups. See you at the show!

Here's how it works in 3 easy steps:

1) Click this link to see our SignUp on SignUp.com: https://signup.com/go/VXMkZDh

2) Review the options listed and choose the spot(s) you like.

3) Sign up! It's Easy - you will NOT need to register an account or keep a password on SignUp.com.

Note: SignUp.com does not share your email address with anyone. If you prefer not to use your email address, please contact me and I can sign you up manually.

Call Marylee at the Chamber Office for more information 705-887-3409.

Fenelon Falls & District Lions Club upcoming fundraisers

Submitted by Debra Wilson

The Fenelon Falls & District Lions Club has two upcoming fundraisers on May 11th and May 25th and welcomes your support.

May 11th

Fenelon Falls Lions Club - Fundraising Toll Bridge 7 am till noon.  Come out and support your local Lions Club with your spare change! Our fundraising efforts go directly into our community for many needed causes.

May 25

Fenelon Falls Lions Club – Walk for Dog Guides. Come out and enjoy some fresh air and a walk with your dog to help raise money for www.walkfordogguides.com. Donation forms can be obtained from Ken by calling 705-887-4504. Meet at the Lion’s Den (beside the Arena in Fenelon) at 9 am for registration, and 10 am for the walk. We will follow this up with a BBQ for all participants! Over the last few years we have been able to successfully support 2 dogs in our community for very deserving owners. We raised over $5,000 last year - Lets beat that total! If you want to donate but can't participate that day reach out to Ken.

Featured Event - Musicfest 2019

Presented by the Fenelon Falls Grannies for Grannies, Musicfest 2019 is happening this Saturday at St. James Anglican Church from 11 am to 5:30 pm. All performers have committed their time to support a worthy cause and now we need your support to come, listen, and enjoy their music. A list of all performers is included in the full update, so be sure to click Read More.

Admission is by donation and proceeds will be going to the Stephen Lewis Foundation.

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Shared Workspace Anyone?

Submitted by Alan Engelstad

Are you operating a home business, freelancing or starting a new business or organization? Perhaps you travel or have a cottage in the area and you’d like a place to catch up on things back at the office. Shared workspaces (co-working) fill a need for freelancers and home businesses and startups to access inexpensive public space in which to do business, meet clients, find complementary talent, learn new strategies and collaborate on projects together. Participants share the operating costs and benefit from things they might not have at home: high-speed wifi, enterprise-level photocopying, a business address and a place to hold a meeting, workshop or create a podcast.

If you’ve not encountered these, here are some examples to whet your appetite and get you thinking about what might work best for you:

http://thinkproductive.ca/blog/2016/02/23/10-top-toronto-coworking-spots

The Fenelon Falls Downtown Revitalization team is looking into the feasibility of a shared office hub of some sort to help our home businesses and freelancers and startups thrive and to create a welcoming place for such businesses or organizations that wish to relocate here.

Interested? Please come to Sweet Bottoms Coffee (19 Colborne St. Fenelon Falls) this Sunday afternoon, 2 p.m. (7 April) or next Sunday afternoon (14 April) at the same time. Let’s discuss what we’d want and need from a shared work environment in town.

Can’t make either time? Please let us know your interest and requirements for a shared work space by sending an email to: fenelonthrives@gmail.com