By Joe Barkovich, Scribbler-at-large
Will Welland city council cross this bridge issue if it comes to it in 2015?
I hope so.
I also hope the word ‘if’ can be replaced with the word ‘when’.
This bridge is an eye sore, an embarrassment to Welland and a potential safety threat. I’ve said it before and I’ll go on saying it until someone shows interest in listening.
I’m looking for leadership from someone on this council in turning this into a matter of public interest and concern in 2015.
If it takes a public meeting – not a behind closed doors meeting – involving the city; the bridge owner, CP Rail; the MPP, the MP, the Region and any other interested parties, then let’s have one. I’ll go so far as to challenge Welland’s mayor and 12 councillors to hold an on-site viewing of this bridge just so they get to see it with their own eyes, if they have not recently done so. While there, they can also check out the pilings in the waterway to see what potential danger they pose. And then I’d like them to open up to the media about what they think.
Wellanders deserve to know what, if anything, is planned for this old railway bridge in 2015. And if anything isn’t planned, we deserve to know why not.
This stretch of recreational waterway and environs is slowly but surely turning into a green space that is the envy of many who visit our community. But this bridge is a blight on what is unfolding in our midst.
Something needs to be done about it. That’s My View.
(A former reporter and city editor, Joe Barkovich lives in his hometown of Welland, Ontario, Canada’s Rose City. My View is a recurring feature.)
By Joe Barkovich, Scribbler-at-large
The inaugural Tribune Basketball Tournament was big news in Welland back in April, 1955.
It was played Friday, April 15 and Saturday, April 16 in the Welland-Crowland Arena on King Street.
Eight high school teams took part. Here’s the opening round matchups as they were played Friday evening:
6 p.m. Linwell High vs Ridgeway;
7:15 p.m. Beamsville vs Pelham High;
8:30 p.m. Notre Dame vs Port Colborne;
9:45 p.m. Welland High vs Fort Erie.
Linwell High from Thorold, Beamsville, Notre Dame and Welland High won their opening games.
The tournament was accorded good advance coverage by the newspaper. An entire page was devoted to eight team photos, with info about the tournament, ticket prices, venues and schedule of opening games filling in the white space.
An image of the full-page advance coverage appears above this story. The teams in the photo are, clockwise from top left, Welland High, Fort Erie, Linwell High, Beamsville, Port Colborne, Notre Dame, Ridgeway and Pelham.
Welland High defeated Linwell to win the championship and Pelham High beat Port Colborne to win the consolation championship.
The 60th anniversary tournament is being held in January: Wednesday, Jan. 7 through Saturday, Jan. 10, 2015.The tournament is sponsored by Niagara College.
(A former reporter and city editor, Joe Barkovich lives in his hometown of Welland, Ontario, Canada’s Rose City.)
One of several discoveries during 2014: the butterfly gardens on the Niagara College Welland campus.
It took a moment’s curiosity one July morning.
A wildflower bed was being visited by a dozen or so butterflies. They touched down gently, nosed around for nectar the flowers may have had to offer, then fluttered off to nearby others that caught their eye.
When I returned in the afternoon, the dog stayed home and the camera came with me. One afternoon I spent almost three hours in the gardens watching the butterflies and taking photographs.
The best butterfly garden is found along a stretch of Woodlawn Road, down a ways from the First Avenue intersection and the big berm. You can see it from the road while driving by.
Not many people realize the butterfly gardens are on campus, judging by the lack of visitors over the course of last summer.
Signs have been erected explaining what they are, they’re well worth reading if you visit.
When you do, be sure to bring your munchkins, and your cameras!
(A former reporter and city editor, Joe Barkovich lives in Welland, Ontario, Canada’s Rose City.)