Bill Wark

Rotary Club celebrates Park House’s National Historic Significance status

 

 

The Rotary Club of Amherstburg has stepped forward again in the public interest, most recently achieving for the Park House Museum the federal designation as a structure of National Historic Significance.

The Park House pre-dates the American revolution in 1776 as a former trading post and was relocated to Amherstburg in 1796 when the British forces decamped from Fort Detroit to Amherstburg. Its design typifies a trading post with numbered logs for disassembly.

The building survived the American invasion during the War of 1812 and later acquired the Park name from prominent merchants.

In 1972, the building was slated for demolition when rescued by the Rotary Club led at that point by then-president Hazen Prize and it was moved to King’s Navy Yard Park. Ownership was given to the Amherstburg Historic Sites Association, presently led by president Bill Wark. Annual funding comes from the Rotary Club of Amherstburg.

Bill Wark (left), president of the Amherstburg Historic Sites Association, stands with Rotarians Terry Hall and Hazen Price. The latter have saved the Park House so that it is a site of National Historic Significance.

To seek federal funding, Rotarian Terry Hall proposed an application to the Government of Canada for designation as a National Historic Site, similar to Fort Malden. The application’s success required extensive assistance from the Park House curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak.

At the Rotary Club’s meeting last Wednesday night, Wark thanked Hall and Pouget-Papak for their work in ensuring the success of the application.

“We’re certainly thankful for their good work,” he said.

Wark noted that Hall helped lead efforts to apply for the National Historic Significance designation while Pouget-Papak did a lot of research to support the application.

The Park House Museum is located at 214 Dalhousie St. Their phone number is 519-736-2511 and their website is www.parkhousemuseum.com.

Essex Powerlines makes annual $10,000 donation under Youth in Community Fund

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Essex Powerlines has maintained a tradition it started several years ago to help youth in its shareholder municipalities.

Joe Barile, general manager with Essex Powerlines, attended the April 9 town council meeting and presented the town with its $10,000 share of a $40,000 donation the corporation makes through its Youth in Communities fund. This is the fifth consecutive year for the donation, with similar donations also made in LaSalle, Leamington and Tecumseh. The goal is to advance local, youth related investment. To date, Essex Power has funded a total of $200,000 youth driven initiatives in the communities it serves.

Barile pointed out the attendance of Essex Empowerment Girls Group members Natasha Kitka and Mackenzie Robson. They are organizers and facilitators of the group with that group able to utilize some of the funding.
Robson indicated they mentor girls from Grade 4-8 and the funding will be used for guest speakers and to help fund the operation of the group.

“It runs for ten weeks, once every season,” said Robson.

Essex Powerlines made its annual Youth in Community Fund donation. From left: Deputy Mayor Bart DiPasquale, Essex Powerlines GM Joe Barile, Mackenzie Robson from the Essex Empowerment Girls Group, manager of recreation services Rick Daly, Essex Empowerment Girls Group member Natasha Kitka and board member Bill Wark.

Kitka pointed out it is a free program, but girls do have to register for it at the Libro Centre.

“It’s beneficial for the girls,” said Kitka, with Robson adding she wishes the program was available when she was younger.

Manager of recreation services Rick Daly said the money will also be used for youth programming and day camps offered at the Libro Centre. He said there is a gymnastics program that is offered there that uses a portion of the proceeds as well.

“Along with providing reasonable rates, consistent power quality and reliability and local accountability, Essex Power is committed to being a good corporate citizen and being socially responsible. The events and programs receiving our Youth in Community funding have elements of education, fitness, art-cultural, or social responsibility.” said Ray Tracey, president and CEO of Essex Power. “At Essex Power, we truly believe that our youth are the key to our future and that investing in young people is an investment in our future.”

Park House Museum receives cheques from Ribfest Committee, Rotary

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Amherstburg Historic Sites Association, the board that operates the Park House Museum, received some good financial news last Tuesday night.

The board received a $5,000 cheque from the Rotary Club of Amherstburg and an additional $1,114 from the Ribfest Committee, the latter being a sub-committee of Rotary. The latter cheque was the share designated for the Park House from the 50/50 draws held during the July festival.

Bill Wark, president of the Amherstburg Historic Sites Association, was happy to receive the cheques.

“We are very thankful for the support from the Rotary Club,” said Wark. “The donations are critical to the operation of the Park House.”

Wark added the Amherstburg Historic Sites Association (AHSA) has a great partnership with the Rotary Club and wants to see it continue.

Rotary Club president Laura George said the service organization may be undertaking an event to assist the Park House Museum, noting they “feel the pinch” as well as they need volunteers and help with projects.

“More hands make for lighter work,” said George.

The Amherstburg Historic Sites Association, which operates the Park House Museum, received a $5,000 from the Rotary Club and a $1,114 cheque from the Rotary’s Ribfest committee last Tuesday night. From left: Bert McLellan, Janet Gardiner, AHSA president Bill Wark, Hazen Price, Rotary president Laura George, Peter Mingay and Fred Roberts.

Park House Museum curator Stephanie Pouget-Papak agreed that the donations are “crucial” in helping the museum operate and offer programs. She said upcoming events include their All Hallow’s Eve event and a “ghost tour,” the latter having “a lot of buzz” surrounding it.

Pouget-Papak also pointed out the Park House Museum will also continue its school tours and Christmas programming in the coming months.

Wark said the Park House Museum did well with its “Music off the Back Porch” series this summer. The museum will also be holding a fundraising dinner Oct. 21 at Royal Canadian Legion Br. 157 with $20 tickets being available at the Park House Museum.

Wark pointed out the event starts with a social at 4 p.m. with the dinner being at 5:30 p.m. There will be a raffle and prizes as well, he added.

Hazen Price, whom Wark called “one of the main cogs” of both the AHSA and Rotary, said the link between the Park House Museum and the Rotary Club of Amherstburg dates back many years.

“The Park House was a Rotary project to begin with,” said Price.

For more information on the Rotary Club, visit http://www.amherstburgrotary.com, e-mail George at rotary.amherstburg@gmail.com or visit their Facebook page.

For more information on the Park House Museum, visit www.parkhousemuseum.com or call 519-736-2511. The museum is located at 214 Dalhousie St.

Unifor Local 1959 assists five area organizations with $1,000 donations

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Unifor Local 1959 has split $5,000 among five Windsor-Essex County non-profit groups, including two based in Amherstburg.

The union distributed five $1,000 cheques at Local 1959 Bud Jimmerfield Hall in Amherstburg last Thursday afternoon. The organizations included the Amherstburg Food Bank, the Essex County Heroes, Street Help, the Unemployed Help Centre and the Windsor Goodfellows.

“Each year, we pick five different, various charities from Amherstburg and the surrounding areas,” explained Local 1959 president Bill Wark. “Each one of these organizations has touched our executive or some of our members. In some way, shape or form, there has been a connection.”

Wark added that by giving each of the five organization a cheque for $1,000, it is Unifor Local 1959’s “chance to say thank you” for their work in assisting others in the Windsor-Essex County community.

Unifor Local 1959 split $5,000 between five different Windsor-Essex County organizations last Thursday at Bud Jimmerfield Hall in Amherstburg. Bottom row (from left): Local 1959 recording secretary Keven McDonald, Unemployed Help Centre foodbank supervisor Debbie Desjardins, Elinor West from the Amherstburg Food Bank, Jeff Thachuk of Windsor Goodfellows, Street Help administrator Christine Furlonger, Essex County Heroes participant Gerald Lemire, Essex County Heroes co-founder Michelle Jones-Rousseau. Back row (from left): Local 1959 trustee Rick Foale, chair Doug Shaw, sgt. at arms, Geoff Bennett, financial secretary Matthew Kelly, president Bill Wark, sgt. at arms Rick Kit, trustee Richard Charuk.

Unifor Local 1959 split $5,000 between five different Windsor-Essex County organizations last Thursday at Bud Jimmerfield Hall in Amherstburg. Bottom row (from left): Local 1959 recording secretary Keven McDonald, Unemployed Help Centre foodbank supervisor Debbie Desjardins, Elinor West from the Amherstburg Food Bank, Jeff Thachuk of Windsor Goodfellows, Street Help administrator Christine Furlonger, Essex County Heroes participant Gerald Lemire, Essex County Heroes co-founder Michelle Jones-Rousseau. Back row (from left): Local 1959 trustee Rick Foale, chair Doug Shaw, sgt. at arms, Geoff Bennett, financial secretary Matthew Kelly, president Bill Wark, sgt. at arms Rick Kit, trustee Richard Charuk.

Elinor West, one of the volunteers at the Amherstburg Food Bank, said the timing is just right to receive such a donation.

“It’s going to be a huge help,” she said.

Summer is usually tougher for the food bank with not as much food available for those in need, West added, as donations are slow this time of year. Most of the donations come during the Christmas season.

“This is going to help us put food on the shelves,” said West.

Michelle Jones-Rousseau, accompanied by Heroes athlete Gerald Lemire, said that organization was pleased to receive the funding from Local 1959.

“We’re very grateful,” said Jones-Rousseau, the Heroes’ co-founder.

The fact the Heroes received one of the donation reflects the growth of the local athletic club, she said. It is geared towards those with intellectual disabilities.

“It’s something to be proud of when other organizations are recognizing how much we’ve accomplished over the years,” said Jones-Rousseau. “We’ve become an important part of the community.”

Street Help is a Windsor organization that operates as a drop-in centre operated by and for the homeless. The Unemployed Help Centre tries to aid the unemployed and underemployed “reach their employment goals.” The Windsor Goodfellows have been helping various charities since its inception in 1910.

Essex Power makes third $10,000 donation through “Youth in Community” fund

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Essex Power Corporation has stepped up to the plate for the third straight year by helping to fund youth programming in Amherstburg.

Essex Powerlines general manager Joe Barile was at the Libro Centre Friday evening where he presented a cheque for $10,000 to the town under the “Youth in Community” fund. Manager of recreation services Rick Daly noted this was the third straight year the town has received a donation from the Essex Power Corporation and said the fund “has helped Amherstburg in many ways.”

One such way was the creation of the Essex Power Energy Zone, the multi-purpose activity room that was created just east of the eating area at the Libro Centre.

Essex Power Corporation donated $10,000 to the town of Amherstburg for the third straight year with Friday's cheque presentation part of the “Youth in Community”fund established by the power distribution company. Essex Power GM Joe Barile and Mayor Aldo DiCarlo, both at the far left of the photo, stand with representatives of local youth sports groups. Youth programming will be the beneficiary of this year's grant.

Essex Power Corporation donated $10,000 to the town of Amherstburg for the third straight year with Friday’s cheque presentation part of the “Youth in Community”fund established by the power distribution company. Essex Power GM Joe Barile and Mayor Aldo DiCarlo, both at the far left of the photo, stand with representatives of local youth sports groups. Youth programming will be the beneficiary of this year’s grant.

Barile said they not only are the people they serve customers, but they are owners as well.

“We therefore make a concerted effort to ingrain the company that you own into the fabric of your community,” said Barile.

Essex Power provides “general guidelines” for how they would like the money to be used but it is up to each member municipality how they use their share. LaSalle, Leamington, and Tecumseh are the other municipalities served by Essex Power.

“The best part of the Youth in Community fund event like this is we get to see the groups and individuals that have or will benefit,” said Barile, as members of Skate Amherstburg and other recreational groups looked on.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo accepted the donation on behalf of the town with Bill Wark, the town’s other representative on the Essex Power board of directors also being in attendance.

“Amherstburg is a proud partner in Essex Power,” said DiCarlo. “They are not just a distribution company, but a group of people committed to the communities they serve.”

DiCarlo noted the money is put to good use.

“With this grant from the Essex Power Corporation, the recreation division is able to provide many programs, events and activities such as Skate Amherstburg’s STARskate program, the end of summer Family Appreciation Day, the Amherstburg Sharks swim meet and the Holiday Family Movie Night,” stated DiCarlo. “Essex Power is a true corporate friend to the town. Their contribution allows us to look at program development for our young residents on a continuous basis.”

The town states the 2016 contribution will continue to be utilized to assist with existing youth programming costs, special event activities and the development of new programs geared towards Amherstburg’s youth.