Lost Community of Glenchristie

Glenchristie, Ontario

I have found the slides I used when my booklet came out titled,"Remembering Glenchristie". I hope you enjoy the short presentation.

School Board Responds to Galt Collegiate Amphitheatre and Tassie Hall Fiasco

GCI Amphitheatre

On July 7th the Waterloo Region district school board responded in writing to the mounting criticism of their failure to ensure the maintenance of the Galt Collegiate Amphitheatre and Tassie Hall.

The letter outlines the investment in maintaining Tassie Hall. The letter states that Tassie Hall is "A highly functional theatre space".

It is ironic that GCI principle Beverly Wood and WRDSB Controller Ian Gaudet (who is responsible for the school board response) have both stated this "highly functional space" is too delicate for the public to use and cannot be rented at night. It is functional for the students during the day.

I would like to give an analogy related to the use of GCI gyms. What if the gyms were only available to the students during the day but were not able to the public at night for rentals due to their delicate condition? Would the school board still call these gyms "highly functional"?

The letter has a one paragraph on the state of the  Amphitheatre. It is hard for the board to defend the amphitheatre that they have let go for over a decade and is in a tragic state of disrepair. There is a study underway to decide to keep it or demolish it.  The study is twenty years too late. I would be surprised if the board restored the amphitheatre to a usable condition.

For a large photo of the Amphitheatre CLICK HERE.

Stay tuned, we will get a copy of the Amphitheatre study once it is done.

VIA RAIL $5.25 Billion Milk Run Route to Stop in Sharbot Lake

Passenger Rail Service Returns to Sharbot Lake. Are You Ready Campers?

We have done stories previously on VIA Rail fundamentally flawed plan to run slow trains from Toronto - Tweed - Peterborough to Ottawa.

Now comes news that the VIA Rail will be stopping at Sharbot Lake. Good news for campers without tents!

Please read our previous story on VIA Rail and Sharbot Lake.

Here are a couple fun facts about VIA Rail.


1. VIA Rail High Frequency Rail Plan is More Dangerous than true High Speed Rail.

 VIA Rail plan is not grade separated. Their plan has trains on the same grade level as autos. Having VIA Rail  tracks at level crossings with roads increases the chances of an auto/train collision. In high speed rail, trains and autos are grade separated eliminating the chance of an accident occurring. That is why the high speed rail system in Japan has never had a fatality after over a half of century of operation. The safety of Canadians traveling by rail should be paramount importance to VIA.


2. VIA Rail Plan Doesn't Address Their Fundamental Problem - High Fares.


People will not ride the train due to the high ticket prices. Especially when travel times are ridiculously slow.

Here is an example to embarrass any Canadian:
  • Japan Railway Tokaido Shinkansen High Speed Rail - Tokyo - Kyoto - Distance - 513km -  Time - 1hr. 40min. - Speed - 320km.hr - Price: 154.059 Canadian Dollar

  • VIA Rail Canada - Toronto to Ottawa  - Distance - 449km, Time 4hrs 31min - Speed 120-160km - Price - 168.37. 

NOTE: It is not possible to evaluate VIA Rails new plan has they will not provide details on it. There is no evidence to suggest VIA Rail will reduce fares to make rail travel more affordable to Canadians.

How can VIA justify their ridiculous high prices?

Where Will the Next VIA RAIL Stop Be?


The news that Sharbot Lake will be getting a stop on VIA Rails proposed route clearly illustrates the line is fast becoming a "milk run" with stops in Tweed and Sharbot Lake. We love history at HSRC so we will give you the LINK again to the original 1967 schedule of the line and we will let you pick out where the VIA Milk Run will have a stop at next.

We doubt they will open the mine at Sulfide,ON and it seems the glory days in Ungava ON are over so we will eliminate those two locations.
Ungava Ontario is not getting VIA Rail service


We are putting our money on Maberly Ontario being the next stop on  the VIA Rail Milk Run. Why? One reason is the Maberly Station Road is still there. We also like the area. It is beautiful there. Okay not a lot of rationale to stop in Maberly. For all you history buffs that remember the old days when Maberly had trains, here is a photo of the station.

Maberly Railway Station


To read more about the exciting news about VIA Rail stopping at Sharbot Lake. Read this ARTICLE by Elliot Ferguson of the Kingston Whig-Standard. Here is the latest non specific map of the line.
VIA Rail latest  map of their proposed line

We sincerely hope the federal Liberal government will give a reality check to this flawed VIA Rail plan. Canadians deserve better. We deserve what the rest of the modern world has had for over 50 years: High Speed Rail.

Vera Causa Opera 2017/2018 Season Announced for Waterloo Region

Vera Causa Opera has formally announced their third season of opera in the Waterloo Region.
https://www.vcopera.ca/single-post/2017/07/13/Vera-Causa-Opera-20172018-Season-Announced

WireService.ca Press Release (12/07/2017) Waterloo Region, ON - Vera Causa Opera (VCO) is proud to announce their 2017/2018 season. The season includes:

Don Pasquale – November 24 & November 25
Little Red Riding Hood – February 17
The Italian Girl in Algiers – April 6 & April 7
Canadian Opera Fest 2018 – June 22 & June 23

Each production, with the exception of the Winter Kids show, takes place in both Cambridge and Waterloo. Here is a link to more details on the VCO season, and to purchase tickets online. Season Passes are now available.

Artistic Director Dylan Langan commented: "As we enter our third year, it seems the fun is only beginning. Last year's productions were met with laughter and standing ovations. The warm response from the region has encouraged us to continue our expansion, and now each opera will be shown for two nights. 

We are continuing to provide opera that is enjoyable, affordable, and accessible to everyone. With the introduction of our Canadian Opera Fest, we have created even more opportunities for arts-oriented individuals to be involved in our productions and organization.”

Season Passes (all 4 nights of opera) are $50 for General, and $25 for Friends of VCO. Individual Tickets are only $15 for General Admission, $10 for Friends of VCO, and free for students. Season Passes and Tickets can be purchased at http://www.vcopera.ca/season.

r more information, contact The VCO Team at vcopera@gmail.com or by visiting www.vcopera.ca.

Tragic Decline of Galt Collegiate Amphitheatre and Tassie Hall

Arguably, the most iconic school in the City of Cambridge is Galt Collegiate. The rich history of the building and it’s impressive architectural design make it an important building to preserve for multiple reasons. It has been designated as a historic landmark by the City of Cambridge in 1983.
Unfortunately two important structures at the collegiate have had their maintenance ignored and are now in a precarious state of repair.

GCI Amphitheatre Left to Rot

Amphitheatre

The amphitheatre overlooking the river was opened in 1977. Rick McNair, a drama teacher at the school, was the driving force behind building it. He also developed the Theatre Arts Program and Curriculum at GCI, and a student performance group called the GCI Harlequin Players. He left GCI in 1977. Rick has passed on, but I wonder how sad he would be to see what has happened to this once beautiful structure.
Closed in 2010, the amphitheatre has been in a steady decline. The accessibility ramps are destroyed, the theatre is overgrown with weeds, electrical components have been ripped out, and wooden benches have been left to rot.
Tassie Hall can longer be booked by the public due to it's fragile state

Tassie Hall
Tassie Hall opened up in 1923. The Galt Little Theatre group, (now called Cambridge Community Players), started putting on plays in the hall in 1933. They would pack the hall with people in the 1940s. Restrictions put on the theatre group by the school eventually led them to find a new home.
It is hard to imagine how this important venue has been left to decay to the point where the public can no longer rent it.
When applying to the school board for a permit to rent Tassie Hall, I was told that it can no longer be rented to the public. Upon further investigation, the principal at Galt Collegiate, Beverly Woods, revealed that due to its “delicate” condition it can no longer be rented to the public who own it.
Custodians have also stated what I have long known, that Tassie Hall sits empty at night over 90% of time.
How could the people we entrust to preserve our buildings allow this to happen? The public owns these buildings and demand better from the Principals, Superintendents and Director of Educations who has allowed this to decline to occur over the years.
As Tassie Hall fades to black and the amphitheatre is overtaken by nature, I hope that someone will be held accountable for the tragic state of these facilities.

Steam Train Video through Galt Station 1956


For fans of vintage steam trains in the Cambridge area, this short video is fantastic! CN and CP steam engines going by the Galt CP station in 1956. Priceless.