Monthly Archives: November 2017

Mayor’s Message: December’s Shared Values Help Tie Us All Together

By Mayor Frank Campion

December is one of the most exciting and awaited months of the year. As Canadians, we learn to embrace December because it delivers winter and all the amazing benefits that a Canadian winter has to offer. December gives us the opportunity to get back on the ice, take the family tobogganing, and teach the kids how to make maple snow taffy. December also closes the year for those who follow the 12 month civil calendar. It’s a time to reflect on the past year and recognize the moments, accomplishments, and hurdles we’ve had.

Dec. 11, 2014 -  Photo by Denis Cahill


December invites a variety of holiday celebrations that bring families closer together. December’s celebrations are the inspiration behind the massive Christmas tree outside of Civic Square and the city’s Santa Claus Parade that kicks off the holiday season every November. Christmas is a celebration that unites families through celebration, food, and tradition. Some of this excitement can be found on Saturday, December 16, while shoppers celebrate Christmas at the Market at the Welland Farmers’ Market. Bring the family and find traditional Christmas trimmings while connecting with the community and the people who grow your food.
Although Christmas decorations, parties, and music tend to be highlighted in December; other holiday traditions are celebrated throughout the city. Welland has always been a city vibrant with multiculturalism, tradition, and customs.
Residents celebrate Hanukkah in December. Families celebrate Hanukkah with eight nights of festivities, including the lighting of the menorah candelabrum each night, and enjoying a variety of traditional foods.
Kwanzaa is a celebration of traditions and family. Kwanzaa celebrations typically showcase visual arts, music, and culture. Food is also a symbol of statement and tradition during Kwanzaa and brings an array of African favourites to the table.
These are just a few traditional family celebrations that take place among Welland families. Join your neighbours this December and discover how diversity in culture and tradition bring families and holidays together. Although we all have our own unique ways to commemorate our traditions, shared values such as joy, hope, peace, and giving, tie us all together.
Enjoy the festivities with friends, family, and neighbours. On behalf of Welland city council and city staff, have a safe and wonderful holiday season.


(Source: City of Welland website)

Distinguished Speaker Hears Cry Of The Poor

Ellen Kaas: “…you have to be bold and sometimes break the rules to bring about positive change.” (Photos by Joe Barkovich)


WELLAND – Charity does not go far enough to feed hungry children or to put roofs over the heads of homeless, says social justice activist Ellen Kaas.
The former Wellander dipped into her social justice experience during the 20th annual Distinguished Speaker Night in St. Kevin parish hall Monday.
“Politicians and power brokers do respond to public opinion,” Kaas said.
Change can be slow but you never know how far a letter, phone call, protest or other action may go.

Kass:  People should have the same opportunities to be all you can be.

For Kaas, social justice is about all people being treated equally. No matter where they were born “they should have the same opportunities to be all you can be.”
She referred to Pope Francis’ encyclical letter Laudato Si, “on the care of our common home” to back up a worldwide application.
Kaas said her first experience in bring about change came as a student at Notre Dame College School.
In the early 1970s, female students were required to always wear skirts despite standing in the cold or rain waiting for buses.
“It was not fair or just.” Pants made more sense, she said.
The struggle by the students included “protests, detentions, out of uniform slips and rallies,” Kaas said.
She learned that “you have to be bold and sometimes break the rules to bring about positive change.”
Later, as a Rotary Club exchange student in Mexico, Kaas saw how easily unfortunate habits take hold. She stayed with a well-to-do family with servants.
“It didn’t take long to pick up the attitude of family members toward servants” such as judging them as lazy.
The chartered accountant, who now operates a business serving non-profits and charities, almost didn’t go to university. Her Notre Dame teachers persuaded her otherwise.
At St. Michael’s College at the University of Toronto, she found a whole world opened and she became involved in the student union.
She saw how deeply consumerism was embedded in society as a don in a students’ residence.
“Young girls would overcome sadness by going shopping.”
Similarly, while studying commerce and finance, Kaas turned away from a Bay Street attitude of “the more profit, the better”.
To take a break from consumer values, she volunteered to work in Guatemala with the Sisters of St. Joseph.
“It was an unexpected learning experience.”
The sisters ran a centre that worked co-operatively with villagers to make improvements, such as digging latrines to avoid illnesses.
Kaas noticed how a co-operative approach raised the confidence of extremely poor villagers.
“To be,” she discovered, “was more important than do.”
The work of the Sisters of St. Joseph centre alienated foreign industrial interests who sought rights to the lands villagers had farmed for generations.
Later, those interests used violence against the centre and those it served to drive out the Sisters of St. Joseph.
“It was so unjust that they could just take the land away,” Kaas said.

Kass: The Catholic church is not the most equitable association.

Now Kaas is on the board of Peace Brigades International, which defends human rights around the world “by waging peace.”
She returned to Canada, earned her chartered accountant credentials, and worked on social justice projects with the Youth Corps.
She played host for Mother Teresa in Toronto, during a visit to Canada in 1982.
Kaas stayed at home to raise four children and with her husband Tom worked part-time as lay pastoral associates at Holy Name Parish in  Toronto.
A group of women came together in 1986 to meet monthly to support each other and sharing spirituality. It continues 31 years later.
The members promote a greater role for women in the Catholic church.  It is not easy and some of the women gave up and moved on, she said.
“The Catholic church is not the most equitable association.”
After her children grew, Kaas started a chartered accounting service for non-profits and charities.
Recently, she has served as a volunteer director on boards of the Catherine Donnelly Foundation and Peace Brigades International.
The $40-million foundation shifted investment in stocks to companies that demonstrated social responsibility.
She said they moved away from mining industry, fossil fuels, and child labour.
In summary, Kaas said change is slow but even small acts can influence people.
“We must see ourselves as one family around the world,” she said. “We must hear the cry of the poor.”

(Wayne Campbell is a retired journalist living in Welland. He worked for the Welland Tribune and newspapers in southern Ontario and British Columbia.)


Hospital Preservationists Continue Campaign For Full-Service Hospital


WELLAND –  A Hospital and Urgent Care town hall meeting is being held here this week.
The meeting is in Welland city hall’s Community Room, Thursday, November 30 at 7pm.
Late last month, health and long-term-care minister Dr. Eric Hoskins announced the Welland hospital would remain open even though a new hospital in Niagara Falls was given the green light.
The meeting on Thursday is being sponsored by Save Our Hospital Group, Niagara Health Coalition and Ontario Health Coalition.
A flyer being distributed to promote the meeting says: ‘Let’s make sure it’s (Welland’s) a full serviced hospital!’
The flyer says the sponsors amount to “one voice working together to save our hospital’s services and urgent care centre.”
The meeting agenda includes reports from local politicians, the Save Our Hospital group and the two coalitions.
“Give us your input and help plan our next steps to maintain and enhance our health services in South Niagara.”
More info is available at or by calling 905-932-1646.

THE WEEK AHEAD: Meetings In Welland

Meeting Calendar

Meetings are open to the public unless otherwise noted. Information is obtained from the applicable agency, board, committee, or commission and downloaded to this calendar as it becomes available. Information is subject to change. Please check back often for the most up-to-date information, including cancellations.

Budget Review Committee Meeting  ≫

5:00 PM Monday Nov. 27   –
Council Chambers

Welland Active Transportation Advisory Committee Meeting  ≫

6:30 PM Monday Nov. 27   –
LOCATION: Flat Water Centre

North Welland Business Improvement Area Board Meeting  ≫

4:15 PM Tuesday Nov. 28  –
M.T. Bellies, 871 Niagara Street

Audit Review Committee Meeting  ≫

5:00 PM Tuesday Nov. 28  –
Council Ante Room

General Committee Meeting  ≫

7:00 PM Tuesday Nov. 28   –
in the Council Chambers

Coach’s Eye View



Notre Dame coach Mark Gallagher keeps a close eye on the play during his team’s game against Burlington Assumption in their game in the Tip-Off Tournament Friday afternoon. Assumption dressed only six players for the game. The Irish won, 72-44, and next play this evening at 7:55pm in Dillon Hall. (Photo by Joe Barkovich)


City Shorts, Try ’em On For Size

2017SpeakerCompilation by Joe Barkovich, Scribbler-at-large  


City Shorts!

City Shorts is a compilation, from various sources (government websites, news announcements, press releases, church bulletins, advertisements, community service information and events, bulletin boards, requests, telephone requests, web postings, email requests etc.) of short items (in most cases) about matters of local interest in Welland. Want to submit an item for consideration? Please send to:

surveyWELLAND – Welland Public Library is conducting a short survey of library users. Give it your two cents on how you use and view the library.
You can fill the survey out at any branch location, or online.
Thanks for helping to shape Welland Public Library’s services!

bb logo (3)WELLAND –  Notre Dame senior boys basketball team has accepted an invitation to play in the All Catholic New Year’s Holiday tournament at Belen Jesuit Prep school in Miami, Florida  during the first week of January 2018.  The event is an eight team tournament with six local south Florida teams, a team from New York City and  Notre Dame.  While in Miami the team will visit the WOW Center Miami, a home for disabled adult and conduct a basketball clinic for the clients at the Center.  The team will be hosting a pasta dinner fundraiser on Friday, December 1 at  Club Castropignano; $14(cash only) for eat in or take out:  penne, meatballs, salad and roll.  Dinners will be served between 3:30pm and 7:30pm.  A  pair of Raptors tickets for Dec 5/17 will also be raffled as a door prize.  All are welcome.


WELLAND  – Tickets are now being sold for the 16th annual Soup’s On! Fundraiser. Tickets, which make great Christmas stocking stuffers, are available at the St. Kevin Church office, Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm. Ticket price is $10 person. The popular luncheon fundraiser is being held Friday, January 26, 2018.  The soup prep teams are from: Blessed Trinity High School, Confederation Secondary School, Eastdale Secondary School, Lakeshore Catholic High School, Niagara College’s Canadian Food and Wine Institute and a local small business, Stephanie the Lunch Lady.


WELLAND – Holy Trinity Anglican Church is hosting a Community Christmas Dinner on the day itself, December 25, in the parish hall, 77 Division Street. Doors will open at 12:30pm and dinner will start at 1pm. For a place at the table confirm your attendance by calling 905-735-8813.

WELLAND –  Blue Hawaii Party  at Welland Museum, December 1, 7 pm – 10pm.
Join the retro Hawaiian themed party with an Elvis twist. ‘Elvis’ will be in the building with a live performance. There will be food and drinks from Smokin Buddha. Hawaiian decor and activities. 19+ . Buy your tickets at for $10 or $12 at the door.

WELLAND  – An evening of Kindred’s Canadian Songbook (Canada 150), their Celtic to Cajun Journey, and some reflections of the Christmas season. The performance is Saturday, December 2, 7pm, in the Theatre at Welland Community Wellness Complex.Tickets: $12 for passholders and $15 for non-passholders. More Information: 905-735-1700 Ext. 4000 or

WELLAND –  l’École secondaire catholique Jean-Vanier is holding its Grade 9 Open House on Tuesday, November 28 from 6pm to 8:30pm. The school is located at 620 River Road.

WELLAND –  Orders are being taken by the Veseli Hrvati music/dance group for Christmas strudel sales at the Croatian National Home’s Club Room. Please pick up your order Sunday, December 17 from 11am to 3pm. Both apple and cheese strudel are being made! To order, call Barb, 905-788-6991.

WELLAND – Welland Library has brand new T-shirts for sale! T-shirts are $15 and are available in adult sizes: XS, S, M, L and XL. Available at the Main Branch and Seaway Mall Branch only. All proceeds go towards fundraising for the Welland Public Library.

WELLAND –  Succeeding in Safety and Mobility/Ask the Pharmacist,
Tuesday, November 28, 2:00pm. This eight-part series hosted by the Welland Public Library’s Seaway Mall Branch will explore the many ways by which older adults can maintain optimal health and wellness. Exercise and yoga, keeping your mind sharp, and gadgets that can make daily tasks easier are just a few of the topics that will be presented. This series is part of the Ontario Seniors Community Grant Program. No registration required. For more info call the Welland Library at 905-734-6210 ext. 2521 or visit

WELLAND – The Evening book club returns this fall to the Main Branch of the Welland Public Library on the last Tuesday of every month. First up: Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo, Tuesday, November 28,  7:30pm. Copies of each month’s book selection are available at the Information Desk. No registration required. For more info call the Welland Library at 905-734-6210 ext. 2521 or visit

WELLAND  – Notre Dame College School is holding its Grade 9 Open House on Thursday, November 30 at 6:30pm. ND is located at 64 Smith Street.

WELLAND –  On Sunday, December 3,  3:30pm to 4:30pm at Jack Ballantyne Memorial Youth Arena, 501 King Street, Welland a fundraiser is being held. La Boîte à soleil will accept monetary donations at the door. Don’t forget your gloves and helmets for the little ones. Receipts will be available for donations of $ 20 or more. Bring your family and friends.

WELLAND – The Afternoon Book Club is back in session at The Black Sheep Lounge, 64 Niagara Street. Due to high demand, the afternoon book club now runs the 2nd and 3rd Wednesday of every month. Copies of each month’s title can be found at the Information Desk at the Library’s Main Branch. The Library will provide a complimentary coffee or similar beverage at Black Sheep. Registration is limited. Please register early to ensure your place at the table. For more info call Welland Library at 905-734-6210 ext. 2521.

WELLAND  –  A New Year’s Eve party is being held at the Croatian National Home, sponsored by the home and Veseli Hrvati music/dance group.
Music is by the well known popular group, Introduction. Doors open 6pm, dinner at 7pm. Tickets are $75 per person and the fare includes a midnight buffet! For tickets contact: Cathy Connor 905-734-6533, Kathy Turkovich 905-735-5089, Barb Turkovich 905-788-6991

WELLAND – Do you have a beautifully lit house in your neighbourhood? Nomination forms for the 24th Annual Residential Lighting Contest are being accepted at Civic Square (60 East Main Street) and the Welland Community Wellness Complex (145 Lincoln Street). Nominations Close: Friday, December 1, at 4:30pm.

WELLAND – Registration began November 13.  Bus tours take place: Monday, December 11 and Tuesday, December 12. Enjoy the best Welland has to offer as you and your family tour the city enjoying the breathtaking lights. Christmas carols, apple cider and treats provided for all. Confirm your spot on a bus tour early to avoid disappointment. Wheelchair accessible busing available.

WELLAND –  Join the Velvetones as they perform a variety of choir, solo, duet and ensemble songs – both sacred and popular Christmas music. The concert is Sunday, December 10 at 2pm in The Theatre at the Welland Community Wellness Complex. Tickets: $7 for passholders and $9 for non-passholders. There will even be an appearance by the Grinch.

WELLAND  –  Meet Mayor Frank Campion at the Merritt Island parking lot Monday mornings at 7:30am for a 40-Minute Walk on Merritt Island.


Irish Pumped For Tip-Off Tournament

Tip Off 2017

WELLAND – The 19th annual Notre Dame Tip-off Tournament gets underway Friday, November 24 at the Welland school.
It features 16 senior boys teams with action getting underway in Notre Dame’s two gyms at 10am.
bb logo (3)The host Fighting Irish are scheduled to play Assumption of Burlington at 12:50pm in Dillon Hall. If the Irish win they play at 7:55pm in Dillon Hall but if they lose they are scheduled for 7:55pm in the Belcastro gym.
The tourneys two championship games are scheduled Saturday afternoon with the consolation championship tipping off at 3:40pm in the Belcastro gym and the tournament championship at 3: 50pm in Dillon Hall. The awards ceremony is set to follow at 5pm. in Dillon Hall.
Teams: Campion, St Marcellinus, St Augustine, Brampton
Blessed Trinity, Grimsby
Villanova, King City
Sacred Heart, Newmarket
St Patrick’s, Ottawa
St Thomas Aquinas, Oakville
Fr Geotz, Mississauga
Bishop Ryan, Hamilton
Lakeshore, Port Colborne and Holy Cross, St. Catharines
Assumption, Burlington
Jean Vanier, Milton
St Ignatius, Thunder Bay