Friday, August 29, 2014


Head scratcher

Town council’s abrupt decision yesterday to drop the referendum question—on whether Fort Frances should be considered as a future site of a gaming facility (casino)—from the ballot for this fall’s municipal election is a real head scratcher.

Are we safe?

More than 20 trains pass through Rainy River, Emo and Fort Frances daily to cross the bridge at Ranier to begin travelling south to Duluth, Minneapolis, Chicago and down to the Gulf of Mexico. Over years with modern technology those trains have grown in length and now stretch for over three miles.

Valued stalwart

Plenty of events are held in the district each year—ranging from fishing tournaments to arts and music festivals.
But there’s one stalwart that’s been a fixture locally for more than 100 years: the Rainy River Valley Agricultural Society’s annual fall fair in Emo, which runs tomorrow through Saturday.

Keep it going

The future of the Emo Agricultural Research Station has been on shaky ground for some time over fears the University of Guelph will cut its funding as a cost-saving measure.
Given the important role EARS plays in the district, however, all efforts must be made to prevent that from happening—or to find other funding sources to keep this vital research going.

Why the delay?

In communities right across Ontario, candidates have been tossing their hats in the ring for this fall’s municipal election.
Fort Frances isn’t among them. As of this morning, no one had yet stepped forward to run for mayor, council, either of the two school boards, or the “Central” seat on the Rainy River District Social Services Administration Board in the Oct. 27 vote.

Use it or lose it

Given the rash of thefts here of late, the OPP once again has been pushing its “Lock it or lose it” public awareness campaign to remind people to protect their property.
“Use it or lose it” is another adage district residents should take to heart; particularly in the case when it applies to supporting local festivals and events.

First step

It’s safe to say most district families, at some point, have had to travel to Thunder Bay or Winnipeg to access medical services not offered locally.

Real shame

It’s too bad Mother Nature had to rain on our proverbial parade.
True, the annual Canada Day parade itself went ahead yesterday morning and thankfully the leaden skies, cool temperatures, and drizzle failed to dampen the spirit and enthusiasm of those who turned out to show off their Canadian pride.

Better safe

As Fort Frances Fire Chief Frank Sheppard himself acknowledged at Monday night’s council meeting, there will be complaints—and questions—about all the fuss should the level of the upper Rainy River fail to reach the sandbags now lining Front Street.

Back to work

Last Thursday’s provincial election is but a distant memory here as district residents battle a major flood threat for the second time in 12 years.

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