Minutes of meeting – February 21, 2013

10 a.m. – 12 noon @ Burk’s Falls/Armour/Ryerson Community Centre


Present: Jessica Busch, WORC; Deborah Jorritsma, WORC; Laura Johnston, CAEDA; Merv Mulligan, McMurrich/Monteith; Laura Irwin, Employment North; Jeff Johnston, KPABA; Cole Dault, Perry Township; Rosalind Hall, Burk’s Falls, Armour, Ryerson; Ron Begin, FedNor; John Santarossa, Magnetawan; Ron Patton, Kearney; Carly Hughes, The Business Centre; Erin Wilcox, Explorer’s Edge; Kate Monk, Explorer’s Edge; Dave Gray, Burk’s Falls/Armour/Ryerson; Roy Williamson.


Regrets: Don Carter, Whitestone; David Stewart, Almaguin Highlands Inc.


  1. Welcome, call to order ~ Jeff Johnston 10:02 a.m.
  2. Introductions of attendees
  3. Declaration of Pecuniary Interest ~ N/A
  4. Adoption of Minutes of January 2013 1st – Merv Mulligan, 2nd – Cole Dault
  5. Business Arising (AHED Business)

Kate Monk presented an update from Explorer’s Edge.  It was very well received.  Kate was accompanied by Erin Wilcox, a FedNor funded intern with Explorer’s Edge.   Please see attached power point presentation.

Some links to remember:

General RTO12 info:  www.rto12.ca

Product Development Fund: http://rto12.ca/tourism-product-development/

Partnership Funding: http://rto12.ca/documents/partnership-funding-the-regional-tourism-approach/

Searchable Database for Tourism Operators on EE site: http://rto12.ca/searchable-database-registration-tourism-operators/


Kate Monk, Communications Manager – kate@explorersedge.ca

James Murphy, Executive Director – james@explorersedge.ca


  1. Reports from Community and Resource Partners


      John Santarossa/Municipality of Magnetawan

John is the new Economic Development Officer with Magnetawan.  He has spent his entire life in economic development in various regions throughout Ontario and is happy to bring his experience and knowledge to the Municipality of Magnetawan.  The major projects in Magnetawan include the Community Recovery Program which is the result of a downtown study funded by FedNor and NOHFC.  The Community Recovery Program is looking at an affordable housing project.  The existing hotel in Magnetawan is currently being renovated.  John is currently establishing a network of contacts in the region.  John reported that MABA (Magnetawan Area Business Association) is staying on independent terms.  Magnetawan is looking into a new overall Strategic Plan to be developed in the near future. 


      Cole Dault/Perry Township

Cole reported that the RFP for an independent operator to take over operation of the Almaguin Highlands Information Centre has closed.  Trailside Adventure Company will be running AHIC as of April 1st.  The Information Centre will also commence Spring/Summer hours as of April 1st being open from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Perry Township has completed their OP and is anticipating the Township will formally adopt it in March – it then has to go to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing for final approval.  The Novar Fire Fighters Association is holding a pancake breakfast on February 24th at the Novar Community Centre from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.  The Emsdale Agricultural Society is holding a Family Bowl in Burk’s Falls on February 23rd at 6:30 p.m. with a dance to follow at the Legion.  Lynn Weller has taken on the role of Farmer’s Market Manager for the upcoming season.


     Merv Mulligan/McMurrich Monteith

Winter Carnival was very successful with special guest, MP Tony Clement announcing funding to complete the newly built Community Centre with a range hood, sound baffles and accessible doors.  The outdoor rink is setting up an organized hockey league.  The fishing derby was held last weekend and had approximately 50 participants.


      Ron Patton/Kearney

The Kearney Dog Sled Races were once again, a very successful event with participants from Virginia, New Jersey, New York and across Canada.  Preparations and discussions are already underway for next year which will celebrate the 20th Anniversary for the event.  An Ontario Tourism Grant was utilized this year for television ads out of Sudbury, radio advertisements were also out of Bracebridge and Orillia among other marketing avenues.  Ron stressed the impressiveness of the event’s volunteer base – it is always commented on how wonderfully supportive the community is.


       Carly Hughes/The Business Centre

The Business Centre’s main office is located in North Bay with an additional location in Parry Sound.  Carly works out of the Parry Sound office at the Canadore College satellite site.  Skype kiosks are set up in Callander, Temiskaming, Mattawa and Magnetawan for clients who are unable to travel.  There will be an event in honour of International Women’s Day held on March 5th in Parry Sound with Guest Speaker Wendy Marlow addressing “The Insider’s Guide to Marketing Your Small Business”.  On March 6th Wendy will be in North Bay presenting the same topic at the Clarion Pinewood Park Inn.  Aboriginal Business Day 2013 will be held on March 19th at the Clarion Pinewood Park Inn.  For more information please contact Carly in Parry Sound at carly.hughes@vianet.ca or Denise in North Bay at denise.sherritt@cityofnorthbay.ca  


       Rosalind Hall/Burk’s Falls, Armour, Ryerson

Rosalind reported that the Village is currently applying for funding in order to hire students to operate the Historical Museum for the summer.  Rosalind also introduced Dave Gray, the new youth intern for the Township of Ryerson, Township of Armour and the Village of Burk’s Falls.  David will start as Community Development Officer on March 5th, running as a separate entity and working with the three municipalities, his focus will be branding. 


       David Gray/Community Development Officer for Burk’s Falls/Armour/Ryerson

David is pleased to be at the table and excited to get started.


       Laura Johnston/CAEDA

Laura reported the bi-monthly regional business event will be held on March 25th and will feature Denise Sherritt speaking on “Marketing on a Shoestring Budget”.  There will hopefully be another funder’s forum upcoming in April.  A co-op student will be joining CAEDA on March 4th with a focus on social media.


       Laura Irwin/Employment North

Laura explained that Employment North is a non profit organization whom receives funding from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.  They administer Employment Ontario Programs, offer referrals and support, support with ODSP, second career assistance, resume assistance, numerous courses and programs and they match employers with job seekers.  Currently the centre is gearing up for summer job service.  For more information please contact Laura at laura@employmentnorth.com  February 27th there will be a job fair in Gravenhurst.  The YMCA in Parry Sound will be holding one on March 6th and the YMCA in Muskoka will be holding one on March 7th


       Ron Begin/FedNor

Ron is pleased to be at the table.  Ron is very willing to speak one on one with people – feel free to contact him for any questions or information.


       Jeff Johnston/KPABA

KPABA issues a monthly newsletter in the form of email to announce funding information and local events.  The Kearney Legion is a major supporter of KPABA as is Perry Township among numerous others – they are always seeking out additional support, contact Jeff for more details.  There is a new restaurant opening in Kearney, an Irish Pub set to open in April.  There will be a Heritage Day/Family Day potluck dinner at the Kearney Community Centre on February 23rd, there is no cost for this event.  The graphite mine is awaiting approval from First Nations for permits.  Upon opening, there will be another job fair.  Currently they are employing approx. 20-25 people, once open, they will employ approx. 80 people.


       Jessica Busch/WORC

Jessica discussed an event that the Women’s Own Resource Centre is hosting on March 20th, from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. at the South River Machar Arena.  “Creating your future: What path will you choose?” is being offered to young women age 18 – 29.  The day will feature 8 speakers including: Andrea Stoppa, Labour Market Group; Patricia Jackson, Canadore College; Employment North; Deb Kurtzer Johnson, East Parry Sound Literacy Council; Jessica Busch, WORC; Denise Sherritt, Business Centre of Nipissing and Parry Sound; Carole Mantha, MNDM; Pat Aspin, NECO.  This workshop will allow young women a chance to increase their awareness regarding various resources that are available in our area, they will also be given the opportunity to connect and network with government representatives, social service agencies and each other.  Lunch and refreshments will be provided.  Space is limited so reserve your spot a.s.a.p.  Call 705-386-9672 or email info@womensownresource.org for more information.



  1. Correspondence
  2. In-Camera (if required)
  3. Next meeting date: Thursday March 21st, 2013 @ Kearney Seniors Lounge









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