Posts tagged The Fenelon Museum
KidsFest at Maryboro Lodge

Submitted by Glenn Walker

KidsFest celebrates the many ways the Kawarthas have been wonderful for families. Producing Tinkertoys, Crayola, Kawartha Dairy Ice Cream, and the great variety of classic wooden toys that enlivened childhoods of the 1950s and 1960s, the region is unusual for how much it has done for kids. It is the 125th anniversary of the first steamer ascending the Fenelon Lock, an important connection in making the lakes a tourist destination and home to the joys of cottage life.  

KidsFest brings to life the unique heritage of the Kawarthas in a free family event at Maryboro Lodge: the Fenelon Museum. Garnet Graham Park in Fenelon Falls will be rocking on Labour Day weekend with nine concerts, featuring Juno-nominated performers Chris McKhool and Sonshine & Broccoli. Children will enjoy larger-than-life creations of local toys, crafts, hands-on activities and a splash pad. There will be a community campfire, magic, a petting zoo, pony rides, a real mermaid, and of course, free Kawartha Dairy ice cream.  The Cameron Lake Monster might appear (it was printed in the Fenelon Falls Gazette, so it must be real!) "KidsFest is going to be a wonderful end of summer party," observes councillor Doug Elmslie.

To celebrate the anniversary of the Fenelon Falls lock, KidsFest has a maritime theme. Once steamships could navigate around the waterfall, they could carry passengers from Coboconk to Port Perry to Bridgenorth. The Kawarthas were born as a tourist destination, as visitors could take the train from distant cities to connect with the paddle wheelers carrying passengers to summer destinations and cottages throughout the lakes. Sunday schools and charitable organizations organized steamship excursions and picnics throughout the lakes, with 25 cent fares. At KidsFest, participants can build a boat, float it down a stream and learn how locks work at a water table. 

"We wanted to host a family event that brings together the feeling of a summer folk festival with a fun fair," explains organizer Sharon Walker. "There will be over 30 hands-on activities, everything from Magic to a Rocket Launcher. There will be so much to do, and it's all free!"



10AM: Fun Zone Opens

10AM: Water Blessing

10AM-1PM: Wagon Rides

10AM-2PM: Magic!

11AM to 2PM: Corn Roast & Barbeque

12:30 Free Ice Cream

1PM: Chris McKhool: Earth, Seas & Air 

2PM: Paddling Puppeters: Plugging Into Nature

3PM: Chris McKhool: Fiddlefire

4PM: Paddling Puppeteers: Honest Frankie's Shoreline Review


10AM-1PM: Pony Rides 

10AM-2PM: Petting Zoo

12:30PM: Free Ice Cream

1PM: Andrew Queen 

2PM: Sonshine & Broccoli 

3PM: Andrew Queen

4PM: Sonshine & Broccoli 

5:30 PM: The Rocket Launch

6PM: Community Campfire

Also See:

Lest We Forget

Submitted by Sharon Johnson

Barbara Dunn-Prosser and Don Deathe will be performing their local WW1 period play, Lest We Forget, at Fenelon Falls United Church on Sunday, November 11, 2018 at 2pm. The script is based on actual people, events, letters and poems that were mentioned or appeared in the local newspaper, The Fenelon Falls Gazette, from 1915 to 1918.

The First World War was a world changing event. This Remembrance Day marks 100 years since Armistice Day, the end of WW1. “The show commemorates not only what happened to thousands of young men from small villages during this tremendous fight, but also the mothers and sweethearts who supported them with continuous hope, determination and the everlasting promise to 'keep the home fires burning',” says Lest We Forget writer and performer by Barbara Dunn-Prosser.

Soloist Barbara Dunn-Prosser will be accompanied by pianist Don Deathe in a selection of popular music written primarily by Canadian composers of the period. Barbara and Don will be wearing costumes from the wardrobe archives of the Stratford Festival.

Guy Scott, author of Where Duty Leads: Waving Off the 109th, will introduce the event.

Maryboro Lodge: The Fenelon Museum is offering this performance by donation.

A Year of Art in Fenelon

Submitted by Chris Van Lierop

It has truly been a year of art! I was sent an email the other day and asked to highlight some of the changes that Fenelon Falls has seen this year and so many of those changes have an artistic flair!

Most recently we saw the Fenelon Marquee turn its lights on; a wonderful restoration project that will light our way down Water street and the Trent Severn Waterway.

Earlier this year we saw the addition of decorative metal banners by Christina Handley on the bridge, welcoming visitors into town, and we also saw a lot of art programming happen this year in Fenelon: the Kawartha Yarn and Fibre Festival kicked off its first year with lineups to get in and is happening again this year; in addition to their robust new programs and events this summer, Maryboro Lodge: the Fenelon Museum opened its new play space where kids can play with toys and sketch to their heart's content.

The Colborne Street Gallery opened and exhibited ‘Cottages’ by Joan Horsfall Young, and the Kawartha Lakes Arts & Heritage Trail maps and signs popped up at many places throughout town showing tourists what culture in the Kawartha lakes is. This year, the Kawartha Lakes Country Living Show doubled attendance from the previous year, and for the first time included artist studios for 10 artists to showcase their work.

The Horticultural Society added a new rain garden to their mix of gardens throughout town and the colorful and fun splash pad opened at Garnet Graham Park to much fanfare. You may have also noticed the large triangular stones which have been erected in several spots about town - these stones will soon bear etchings with directional information, to help visitors find their way around.

It's been a great year for Fenelon Falls that has also included the addition of several new businesses helping to fill some empty storefronts, and a new "bike-share" system at Lock 34 that you can use to get around town.

I’m looking forward to next year where we will see the continued expansion of natural gas into Fenelon Falls by Enbridge, the introduction of a walking tour to downtown Fenelon Falls by Maryboro Lodge, and the 30th Anniversary of the Kawartha Arts Festival amongst many other exciting things to come.

With the election happening as I write this I’m reminded that we all get to cast our vote on who helps us continue to move forward and show our greatest side. We’re so thankful to the creativity we all bring to this wonderful town and the great businesses and volunteers who help make it the vibrant place it is.

Allen Wood Play Space Grand Opening at Maryboro Lodge

Submitted by Sharon Walker

Last weekend, Maryboro Lodge hosted the grand opening of the Allen Wood Play Space. The opening event was a huge success and we hope to see you and your little ones at the museum to enjoy the Play Space soon!

On Saturday, grand opening attendees were treated to the following speech from Kawartha Heritage President Jenny Crawford:

I would like to thank everyone for joining us to celebrate the Kawarthas' heritage of toy manufacturing. Crayola, the Yip Stick, Kawartha Dairy, Tinkertoys and Allen Wood Products--our region has done so much to make childhoods special.

For a generation, Allen Wood Products was a pillar of this community, and throughout this project I have been surprised by how many people have fond memories of the company. Manufacturing a great variety of toys, including the tinkertoy, pounding benches, croquet, bowling, ring toss and bead action figures to name a few, Allen Wood defined the experience of childhood in the 1950s and 1960s, something we now have the pleasure of recreating for today's youth.

As the president of a historical society, it is always special when we can help bring history to life. Even during construction, the community response to this Play Space has been remarkable. It has been a wonderful thing to hear all the joyful noises coming from this room over the summer.

I would like to thank everyone who contributed to make today a success. Doug Elmslie was a tireless advocate for this project. Without him, there are many obstacles it never would have cleared. The Kawartha Lakes Community Futures Development Corporation, the Eastern Ontario Development Program and City of Kawartha Lakes provided necessary funding. Without the support of the Development Corporation, none of this would have been possible. We would also like to thank our numerous sponsors including Fenelon Falls Home Hardware, Kawartha Dairy, Bob Mark New Holland, Tradewind Toys, BRIO, Memory Lane Motors and the Fenelon Falls and District Lions Club. Many volunteers made huge contributions to this project, particularly Will Bowyer, Judy Kennedy and Robbie Preston. I would especially like to thank Glenn Walker for his vision for this project and his tireless efforts to build many of the items that are now in this room. His imagination has become reality and children are reaping the benefits of his efforts.

Fenelon Falls' waterfront core has come a long way in recent years. From the rebirth of the park, the renovation of the museum, the new splashpad, the restored theatre marquee, and now this first step towards children's activities at the museum. It's hard to think what this place looked like not so long ago. Our community is laying the groundwork for becoming a destination for families.

Without further ado, I would like to call on Bob Allen to cut the ribbon and open: The Allen Wood Play Space!

Restored Fenelon Marquee To Officially Light Up September 29th

Submitted by Films by the Falls

Community event organized to commemorate the official unveiling and lighting up of the Fenelon Theatre Marquee and to celebrate the years long adventure to restore and relocate this historic landmark of Fenelon Falls, Ontario.

The journey from Colborne to Oak Street for the Fenelon Theatre Marquee was not a leisurely stroll down Francis and May Streets to its new location outside the Chamber of Commerce Tourism and Visitors Centre. To help guide the way a group of volunteers, craftsmen, supporters, visionaries and believers from the community of Fenelon Falls and surrounding Kawartha Lakes area, embarked on the task to restore the sign that had been donated back to the community by property owner Steve Gibson when the Fenelon Theatre was demolished in November 2016.

The official unveiling and lighting up ceremony of the newly restored Fenelon Theatre Marquee will be held on Saturday SEPTEMBER 29th at 7:30pm. The lights will be turned on shortly after dusk. There will be a reception following the ceremony at the Maryboro Lodge (the Fenelon Museum), which will be open for this special evening event. In the spirit of the movies that once flicked by the falls, we invite everyone to come dressed up as a glamorous version of themselves or their favourite movie star and to really get into glitzy mood of the evening. Plan to celebrate with good cheer, a silent auction and many stories and recollections of days gone by. Refreshments will be served and all the exhibits of the Museum will be open to peruse, including the original projector from the old theatre.

The Theatre Marquee Restoration Group officially formed in the fall of 2016. Many businesses and individuals came together to make this project a success. Funding came from the Legacy C.H.E.S.T. Fund, Powerlinks, the 50/50 Community Project Capital Funding Initiative and the Kawartha Lakes Community Futures Development Corporation’s (CFDC) / FedDev Ontario’s Eastern Ontario Development Program (EODP) and many personal donations from the community. There was an overwhelming response to the group’s fundraising efforts from both the community and local businesses and organizations such as the Fenelon Museum, Fenelon Falls & District Chamber of Commerce and Kawartha Lakes Film Circuit/Films by the Falls.

While the brick building may be gone, Fenelon Theatre Marquee will once again light up the town whose name it bears bright. Join in celebrating the official switch of the lights to ON! and help to welcome an old landmark to a new landscape.

Event Details:

Saturday, September 29, 2018

7:30 pm Ceremony at Fenelon Marquee, 15 Oak St., Fenelon Falls, Ontario

Reception to follow at Fenelon Museum, 50 Oak St., Fenelon Falls, Ontario

Facebook Event Link:

Welcome to Round 2 of The Land Between

Written By Shannon Bain

Ding Ding! It's round 2. We are back with another course of The Land Between at the Maryboro Lodge: The Fenelon Museum. Our gatherings in July proved to be incredible opportunities to share interest and perspective about this precious earth beneath our feet and our waterways. We are very pleased to offer another chance to meet with neighbours and knowledge, in a super cool little theatre setting in the gallery room at the Museum to boot. Each episode is full of history, geography, spiritual life lessons and scenery that will take your breath away. Don't be surprised if you know one of the incredible local experts featured.

So it's settled then 😉 Grab a copy of this awesome 3 part DVD from Kawartha Lakes Public Library or join us at the Fenelon Museum for an episode (or all three!). The discussion is on me, and the refreshments are on the house.

Saturdays at Noon. Schedule below (note date changes - we have extended into September!):

August 18 - Episode 1
August 25 - Episode 2
September 8 - Episode 3

About the Series:
This visually spectacular, three-part documentary series explores the newly recognized area in Ontario, Canada, that many people are calling The Land Between. Narrated by R.H. Thomson, the series uses aerial and time-lapse videography, cinematic historical reenactments, animation, an original musical score, and hundreds of rare historical photographs and films to introduce you to The Land Between, and the ever-changing story of how humans have interacted with this special region throughout time. Known as an "ecotone," The Land Between is a liminal space between the Canadian Shield and the St. Lawrence Lowlands. It is home to a host of overlapping species from the north and the south, which has encouraged sharing between First Nations cultures for thousands of years. But European settlers couldn't figure out what to do with its incredibly diverse patchwork of rock barrens, rivers, lakes and marshlands. It was not until the Victorian fascination with "wilderness" that The Land Between found a place in the collective psyche of Canadians – when people gave parts of it names like “Muskoka” and “The Kawarthas.” And it’s only recently that recreational use and urban resource needs have placed this biologically diverse region under threat.

Episode 1 - The Best of Both Worlds - Synopsis
The opening episode of the series starts with an introduction to The Land Between concept - beginning with how its transitional geology and ecology has been understood for centuries, to the late Peter Alley's modern-day passion to understand more about this unique landscape. The Land Between's four Great Gathering Places: Mazinaw (Bon Echo), Kinomagewapkong (Peterborough Petroglyphs), Mnjikaning (Orillia) and Beausoleil Island; are discussed in order to gain a greater understanding of First Nations relationships with this region. The symbiotic relationship that developed here between the agricultural Wendat of the South and the hunter-gatherer Anishinabe of the North is also explored. Finally, we look at Europeans first impressions of The Land Between, the chaos that the Beaver Wars brought to the region, and the resulting peace treaties, which reestablished the sharing of the land's resources.

Episode 2 - The Country of Our Defeat - Synopsis
The opening sequence of this episode tells the story of Sam Moore, a trader from the United States, who, in the early 1800s, started a trading post in partnership with a Mississauga man he called: "Too Tall." Surveyors, who were amongst the next Europeans to come to The Land Between, had great difficulty in making sense of, and finding a use for a land they often called a "barren, rocky country." The timber industry and lumber barrens followed and had a huge impact upon the landscape. In order to encourage more than just lumbermen to come to The Land Between, the government developed a scheme of colonization roads, which they hoped would quickly populate the region with 8 million farmers. In reality, many of these roads turned into trails of broken dreams for the farmers who settled there. Finally, we look at the region's mining history, including Ontario's first gold rush, and the multitude of mostly unsuccessful mining ventures lured into The Land Between by its incredibly diverse geology.

Episode 3 - Ginowaydaganuc - Synopsis
The final episode begins by exploring some modern-day relationships with The Land Between landscape, including an artist, an archaeologist, an elder, a cottager, a canoeist, and a Buddhist monk. We then go back in time to discover how some of these modern-day relationships, and feelings, developed: from the first Victorian travellers and artists to early tourism and First Nations guiding, to children’s camps, and the implementation of the parks system. There is also a legacy of a few individuals who have taken it upon themselves to steward their favourite piece of The Land Between. Today, volunteer groups, governments, and corporations are struggling to find a balance between economic development and environmental sustainability for The Land Between of tomorrow.

Green Scene — Get Outside, Get Involved

Written by Zoë and Edie McIntosh

This week we want to provide you with some options to get outside, get involved, and maybe learn a little more about nature... here are some awesome options right near us!

The Maryboro Lodge - The Fenelon Museum

There is free yoga in the park on Mondays at 9:00 am, knitting on the veranda on Tuesdays at 9:30 am, on Wednesdays at 11:00 am there are outdoor sketching classes and the Afternoon Tea from 1:30 until 4:00 pm (the Afternoon Tea is the only thing that is not free, only $5.00 for tea and 2 scones), Thursdays at 10:00 am is Outdoor Activities, and on Saturday there is the Settler’s School in the one-room schoolhouse beginning at noon. You can also help harvest the Community Garden and learn more about gardening on Mondays at 10:00 am. The garden is a great and relaxing place to spend time outside!

For more information go to

Gaaming Nature Centre

Located just outside of Bobcaygeon is another amazing option so close to home! "Gaaming" is Ojibwa meaning “at the shore.” At this center, there are hiking trails, bird watching, wetlands conservation projects, a Native species nursery, and a discovery shack to explore and discover nature. There are also summer day camps for kids and new this year is a Forest School opening in September. So COOL!

For more information go to

Ken Reid Park / Kawartha Conservation Area


Ken Reid park is between Fenelon Falls and Lindsay. On this area of 272 acres of land, there are maintained trails for hiking, biking and cross-country skiing. There is bird watching and even a floating boardwalk winding through the provincially significant MacLaren Creek Wetland. There are picnic shelters, a playground structure, and an off-leash dog park. Kawartha Conservation also runs environmental programs for all grade levels for schools. There is a Parent and Tot Exploring Nature Program on Thursday mornings from 9:30 to 11:30 am on August 16, 23 and 30th. For kids aged four and up there are day camps, too!

For more information go to

There are lots of ways to be active and get outside! Let’s not forget the amazing rail trail. Our family walks, runs, and bikes to town on the trail all the time! There are lots of ways to get involved and be part of our outdoor and environmentally active community. Some volunteer options include: the Fenelon Falls Horticultural Society who plant and maintain many of the beautiful gardens around town including the community garden at the museum, and the Garnet Graham Park “goose poo crew” also needs help to keep the beach open to enjoy the water. Contact if you have a few hours to spare once a week to help keep our beach clean.

It takes all of us to make Fenelon great! Let’s all get outside, learn something every day and volunteer our time to make a difference!

Zoë and Edie

5 Generations of Fenelon Falls

History provided by Ali Carter

My Father’s Grandfather bought a property on Sturgeon Lake in 1912. Our family has been summering here for over 100 years. In 1999, my parents retired here and lead active lives in the community playing golf, curling, and bridge.

When my brother and I had our children, we made it a priority to visit Fenelon Falls, not only during the summer months, to take part in the many unique and exciting events, and variety of activities, the various seasons bring.

My daughter Quinn (8) and her cousin, Cole (9) have been coming to the area year-round since they were born. They are the 5th generation on our property. They are the best of friends and always look forward to their time together at Grandma and Grandpa’s!

Some of their favourite Fenelon activities are:

  • Country Cupboard for frozen yogurt
  • Lunch at Murphy’s
  • Visiting the Fenelon Museum where my Great Aunt Elenor Mann’s figure skates are displayed
  • Skating at Fenelon arena
  • Fenelon Park
  • Harvest Festival
  • Santa Day
  • Candy bar at Grr8 Finds
  • Shopping at Butterfly Boutique and Red Apple
  • and probably their rides and kayaks on Sturgeon Lake!

I may have missed a few things! We adore Fenelon and are so impressed with the diversity and inclusive nature of this town. Every day we all feel blessed that 106 years ago our relatives decided that this was the place to lay roots.

Do you have a story or picture to share? We'd love to learn about your and your families experiences with Fenelon Falls. Send us an email to for a chance to be featured on our website, social media and in The Town Crier newsletter.

The Perfect Summer Day In Fenelon Falls

Whether you're a visitor, or a local that simply can't get enough, we want to walk you through an example of a perfect summer day in Fenelon Falls, the jewel of the Kawarthas.

Start your day with breakfast at Sweet Bottoms


"All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast." -John Gunther

There's no better way to start your day than with a delicious breakfast. Local favourite, Sweet Bottoms, is sure to meet all of your breakfast needs. Open at 7 am during the week, and 8 am on weekends, Sweet Bottoms offers organic coffees, high quality teas, fresh bread baked daily, baked goods and more.

Head on over to Maryboro Lodge, the Fenelon Museum

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography


The Fenelon Museum is one location that shouldn't be missed, especially for out-of-town visitors. During the summer, they are open 7 days a week from 11 am until 5 pm. The museum not only offers an insightful glimpse into Fenelon Falls' history, it also features regular events, art and artifact exhibitions, and weekly programs. There's something for everyone!

Take a stroll to the Falls and locks to boat watch

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

It's a simple pleasure, but one that can be awe-inspiring. During the summer, Lock 34 is busy with lots of visitors travelling by boat. One of the most relaxing activities you can enjoy in town is to watch the boats pass through the locks. Some boats are local, from other around the Kawartha Lakes, while others travel from afar, from locations like Florida, Alaska, and Hawaii. 

Eat a slice of pizza and a Kawartha Dairy ice cream at Slices 'n' Scoops


"Slices n’ Scoops have the best pizza in town!" - Dana Deathe

Not only do Slices 'n' Scoops have the best pizza in town, they also serve up one of the best gems of the Kawartha Lakes region, Kawartha Dairy ice cream. Whether you're looking for lunch, a nice treat on a hot day, or a combination of both, Slices 'n' Scoops is located right beside Lock 34. You can grab your food, and continue to enjoy the scenery.

Visit one of the local art galleries in town

Fenelon Station Gallery

Fenelon Station Gallery

Colborne Street Gallery by Tim + Chris

Colborne Street Gallery by Tim + Chris

For art lovers, there are two amazing galleries in town. The first, Fenelon Station Gallery was founded in 2005 as a co-op by a group of local artists. The gallery is inside a historical building, a train station, dating back to the 1800's. It currently features 16 local artists, near-daily artist demonstrations, and a gift store. The second gallery is newcomer, Colborne Street Gallery by Tim + Chris. Colborne Street Gallery is located right on the main street of Fenelon Falls and highlights local and Canadian fine artists, designers and artisans and is a proud member of the Kawartha Arts Council and Arts & Heritage Trail.

Go shopping at one of many unique downtown stores

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography


There's something to be said for supporting small business owners - it's not only is good karma and supports the local economy, but there is a deep satisfaction in knowing the items you are purchasing are a combination of unique, high quality, and/or Canadian-made. Fenelon Falls is proud to feature numerous local stores that fit these requirements from clothing stores like The Butterfly Boutique, The Corral, and The Kawartha Store. Other local favourites include Curious?, The Barn and Bunkie, and The Village Shop

Enjoy a sweet little treat from The Little Pie Shack

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

The Little Pie Shack is a Fenelon Falls icon. It's a beloved favourite of both locals and visitors - both due to it's colourful and friendly exterior, and especially because of the downright delicious and homemade treats they offer. After an afternoon of shopping, you've surely earned a sweet little treat, snack, or smoothie.

Break for a nice walk through Garnet Graham Park

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Garnet Graham Beach Park runs along Cameron Lake right near the Fenelon Museum. It features a great trail, Victoria Rail Trail, which runs from Lindsay, Ontario, all the way to Kinmount, Ontario. Whether you're looking to take a small stroll, big hike, or bike ride, there's lots of options available. Garnet Graham is also child-friendly and features a playground, brand new splash pad, and some of the beautiful butterfly benches that you'll see around town.

Stop for dinner at local favourite, Murphy's Lockside Pub and Patio

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography


Murphy's is another favourite of both locals and visitors alike. It's a great place to relax, hangout, and enjoy great food and drinks. Some favourites include their buttermilk chicken sandwich, their black bean vegetarian burger, and their sticky toffee pudding for dessert. Depending on when you stop by, they might also have an open mic night on for even more fun!

End the day by watching the sunset on Cameron Lake

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

Photo credit: Baddow Road Photography

There's no better way to end your day than by watching the sunset on Cameron Lake. You can watch from the shore, your boat, or make the most of it with an evening swim — it's gorgeous!

It's almost hard to believe that our perfect day provides just a snapshot of the many activities, stores and sights in Fenelon Falls. It truly is the Jewel of the Kawarthas. If you're a local, we'd love to hear about your perfect summer day. If you're a visitor, we welcome you to Fenelon Falls and would love to know what you are most looking forward to.

Feel free to share as little or as much as you like in the comments below.