Category Archives: From the Ec. Dev. Desk

The latest news straight from the Economic Development Department’s desk.

Picture perfect…..

Life’s Precious Moments

7 Halifax Street, Vanastra, Ontario N0M 1L0  ●  Telephone (519) 440-1537

The Village of Vanastra gains momentum as another business opens its doors.

Diane Proper’s photography has come a long way.  From kitten photos she took as a child with a small plastic camera to on-site innovative shoots and the studio she recently opened, this lifelong photographer has pursued her love of the lens and all it can create.

In 2009, her photo venture (and adventure) was established as a mobile business and by 2017, it had grown to needing a dedicated space that would accommodate the varied tastes of her clients.  Whether it be for a newborn baby, a beloved pet, a happy family, or an anniversary couple, Diane develops a setting that fits. 

And this dedicated photog is sure to capture the essence of that extra-special event—your wedding day, with all its happiness, its remarkable moments.  And wedding packages include an engagement shoot.

Getting to know her pictorial subjects beforehand allows Diane to make the most of time with the bride and groom, to recognize what works for them, and to match their personalities to the finished product.  It’s all about advance planning, even for the photographer.


Life’s Precious Moments is also able to provide photo restoration.  Those old pictures which have faded or lost their depth can be expertly restored either in black and white or sepia.  Diane’s deft touch with computer software brings those photos into focus again, gives them new life that evokes memories of the past and renews the warm smiles of loved ones.

In addition, her studio regularly hosts exceptional photo events, such as pet day and kids costume picture parties.  Diane can produce slide shows, collages, and offers business services as well.

In addition to all of the above, it is the mission of Life’s Precious Moments to provide high quality personal service at affordable prices.

A wonderful opportunity to not only record today, but also to leave behind photographic memoirs for the future!

For more information contact: Jan Hawley, Economic Development Officer – Municipality of Huron East 519.527.0160

Written for the Municipality of Huron East by: Carolyn Parks Mintz,

Photography by: Diane Proper – Follow on Facebook @ Lifes Precious Moments

 

Re-birth of Historic Downtown Brussels…

Change is in the Air……

“Brussels Four Winds Barn – Wedding, Market and Events Centre”

Over the years, the Village of Brussels has made strides to revitalize its historic downtown. With support from the Municipality of Huron East, local community and business groups and numerous student-lead programs lead by the Universities of Guelph and Waterloo, this quaint rural Ontario village is finally starting to show signs of a come-back.

This can be seen in the attractive streetscape and wall murals lining its downtown, the re-birth of the Brussels Public School, the renovation of its cherished Carnegie Library, and the development of walking trails that wind along its tree-lined streets and scenic waterfront.

The latest undertaking is the construction of the Brussels Four Winds Wedding and Event Barn: a visionary, re-purposing project that will incorporate a vintage barn within a multi-functional site hosting community events, weddings, celebrations, bakery and year-round farmers’ market, while providing a venue for the collection of unique shops.

The talk of ‘barn re-purposing’ may beg the question: Does a barn cease to be a barn when it no longer shelters livestock, when haylofts are empty, or when its threshing floor is silent? Perhaps. 
Nevertheless, this structure’s massive, hand-hewn, rock-elm timbers have made the journey to their new home, and will receive a renewed lease on life.Its arrival to downtown Brussels begins another chapter in this local heritage barn’s history.

Built by Alexander Stewart in 1862, the 57’ by 80’ “Wheeler Barn,” as it is known locally, has withstood severe weather, and many years of heavy use, while faithfully serving generations of Stewart and Wheeler homestead families for over 150 years. Once a vital structure, it was now standing unused; it was deteriorating, a testament to the agricultural history of the region, and to an industry much changed.
Enter…..Bryan Morton. While chatting with local property owner and businesswoman Barbara Terpstra, the retired farmer contemplated the notion of moving an old barn to downtown Brussels—and the rest is soon to be history.

Herman Terpstra donated the barn, and skilled Mennonite work crews led by Cleeson and Abram Martin were marshalled. Locals pitched in to arrange food for workers, and Bryan Morton and Project Coordinator Herb Jacobs numbered, catalogued and tagged each piece of timber. The barn was disassembled, new foundations poured, and the former Wheeler Barn was transported piece by piece to its new location, adjacent to the historic Brussels Carnegie Library. 
Its reconstruction has been exciting to watch, and the merging of past and future has indeed been heartwarming to all.This “old-new bank barn” will integrate modern insulation, lighting, and renovations with original barn board, granite stonework, foundation rubble stone, and items such as a vintage curry comb box and a working windmill. The structure will even feature a piece of concrete reading “S.W. 1922” recognizing Stanley Wheeler, who took over the farm from his father in 1919, a tradition handed down by many homesteaders over the years.
Weather vanes will adorn the top of four cupolas perched on the British Columbia red cedar shingled roof of the Four Winds centre, aptly named given that it is sure to draw visitors and shoppers from all directions. This new structure’s design complements the existing Carnegie Library in material and architectural detail, and will not interfere with sight lines to the building’s impressive façade and roofline.

The Four Winds development is a perfect fit for the soon-to-be-implemented Brussels Community Improvement Plan, which will facilitate restoration of historic storefronts along its main street.

Refurbishment of 19th century structures has proven to be an important aspect of archi-tourism, together with renewed economic development. As respected heritage restoration specialist, Dr. Christopher Cooper maintains, “Quaint never goes out of style!” 

 “I have a great fondness for timber-frame barns, and they are rapidly disappearing, being torn down or falling down,” says Bryan Morton. “When I was farming, I was too busy to participate in the community, but it is now time to give back. Providing Brussels with one of my favourite pieces of function and form, just seemed in order.”

 The “Wheeler Barn” therefore remains a barn, but a barn with a new purpose.

To be continued……

For more information contact: Jan Hawley, Economic Development Officer – Municipality of Huron East 519.527.0160

Written for the Municipality of Huron East in collaboration with: Carolyn Parks Mintz, Kylie Hendriks, & Jan Hawley

Photography & Conceptual Drawings prepared by: Lynne Moreland – Westcoast Photography, Dr. Christopher Cooper, Edifice Guild & Atelier and Herb Jacobs, Brussels Four Winds Project Coordinator

Retirement by Design…..

“Inspired Living Seaforth”

From their birth, Baby Boomers have ‘driven’ everything since they arrived—housing, furniture, cars, education, marketing, national economies—you name it. They influenced it and now they’re reaching a time when decelerating, downsizing, and taking time to smell the roses are attractive alternatives to the busy lives they’ve led. And the Town of Seaforth is about to welcome a new development designed especially for those, who value specific function as much as form.

“Inspired Living Seaforth” will encompass the amenities and necessities important to those of a certain age: Baby Boomers, Zoomers, and their contemporaries will be in close proximity to the bustling Town of Seaforth, nearby arts and cultural centres, the Seaforth Golf Course, country woodlands and hiking trails, as well as the beaches of a beautiful lakeshore.

To be located in the countryside, not far from Seaforth’s health centres and hospital, the multi-phase, multi-million dollar development will include 40 condos as part of ten fourplexes, and a three-storey 80 rental unit building with many main floor conveniences, such as a fitness studio, physio/rehab, greenhouse, lounge, dining room, hair salon, activity/crafts room, and a nursing office. Completing the all-inclusive community will be a centre for more dependent residents, providing comprehensive medical and personal care.

Inspired Living Seaforth will be designed to offer the features and distinct lifestyle of rural living to those who have long resided in the country. Remaining in a familiar environment makes transition and change far more palatable to retirees, and for those eventually requiring assistance with day-to-day living. This leading-edge residential complex will also incorporate research and educational opportunities for those in the professional care field.

JL Retirement Living, the parent company of Inspired Living Seaforth, is under the direction of President and CEO Jessica Lunshof, a former emergency and long-term care nurse, and her brother Joshua Lunshof, Vice President of Operations. Inspired Living–Seaforth will provide both residential comfort and specialized services.

A place of relaxed and enriched living planned for your future. 

Join us for our Open House of the Model Home

Friday, May 26th, 2017 from 11:00 am to 3:00 pm

Corner of Alexander & Centennial Drive across from the entrance to the Seaforth Community Hospital, Seaforth ON

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Contact: Jan Hawley, Economic Development Officer  jhawley@huroneast.com

Municipality of Huron East Seaforth, Ontario   519.527.0160                     

Written by: Carolyn Parks Mintz for the Municipality of Huron East