Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada

CWATS celebration tour comes to Amherstburg

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

An annual celebration of Essex County’s trail and paved shoulder network ended with a bang in Amherstburg.

Amherstburg was one of the stops on the County-Wide Active Transportation (CWATS) celebration tour with every municipality in Essex County participating. The celebration in Amherstburg occurred last Thursday afternoon in Toddy Jones Park with Mayor Aldo DiCarlo, members of both county and town administration and Windsor-Essex County Health Unit (WECHU) officials helping to lead the walk. The walk left Toddy Jones Park, went through Fort Malden National Historic Site, proceeded south on Laird Ave. and returned to the park.

Const. Steve Owen instructs local students on bicycle safety as part of the County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) celebration. It started and ended at Toddy Jones Park with a walk through Fort Malden in between.

Const. Steve Owen instructs local students on bicycle safety as part of the County-Wide Active Transportation System (CWATS) celebration. It started and ended at Toddy Jones Park with a walk through Fort Malden in between.

“It’s great to be here to reinforce active transportation through CWATS,” DiCarlo told the crowd of roughly 300 students that participated.

Students came from both Amherstburg Public School and General Amherst High School.

DiCarlo outlined paved shoulders and trails that have been installed in Amherstburg in recent years, including paved shoulders on County Road 5 (the portion of Concession 2 North between Middle Side Road and Texas Road), County Road 18 and the launch of the Cypher Systems Greenway.

“All of these will support cycling, walking and more active transportation in Amherstburg,” said DiCarlo.

Jane Mustac, manager of transportation planning for the County of Essex, said it was a chance to celebrate with their partners including the seven county municipalities, ERCA, the WECHU, Ministry of Transportation and others.

Students from General Amherst High School walk through Fort Malden during the June 8 CWATS celebration in Amherstburg.

Students from General Amherst High School walk through Fort Malden during the June 8 CWATS celebration in Amherstburg.

There are approximately 150 kilometres of trails in Essex County, said Mustac, noting that it took since 2012 to create that much. The widening of County Road 18 from Meloche Road to Concession 6 South to include bike lanes means people can get from the Willowood campground to Fort Malden on bicycle, Mustac pointed out.

The County of Essex dedicates about $1 million per year towards CWATS and partners also contribute. Not only does it go towards infrastructure, but education and outreach are included. The celebration in Amherstburg was the largest, Mustac added.

Students participating in the CWATS celebration walk along the Detroit River inside of Fort Malden National Historic Site last Thursday afternoon.

Students participating in the CWATS celebration walk along the Detroit River inside of Fort Malden National Historic Site last Thursday afternoon.

“We went out with a bang,” she said. “This is our last stop and they made it count.”

Mustac encouraged people to get out and use the trails.
“Try them out,” she said. “Let us know what can be improved. We are looking forward to the next phase.”

For more information on the County-Wide Active Transportation System, visit www.cwats.ca.

Live History presents “In Time” at Fort Malden

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

The Live History group brought their tour to Amherstburg over the weekend where the performance of “In Time” was held.

Live History1WEB

The shows were presented in co-operation with Parks Canada at Fort Malden National Historic Site. Show designer Joshua Kitz called it “an interactive experience” that involves the guests that come out to watch the shows.

“When the guests arrived, they get to decide which character they follow,” he said, noting there were four characters in the “In Time” show.

Attendees got to be involved with the show and “depending on the choices of the audience, history can change,” said Kitz.

Live History9

The official description of the show was “Directly following the successful siege of Detroit, General Brock, his aide-de-camp Lt-Col Macdonell and you, his militia, have returned to Fort Amherstburg. The next great victory lies ahead, at Queenston, and morale is high. However, there are a few among you who are not as they appear. The War of 1812 created divided loyalties, and those who would do anything to see victory for their side. The local healer has family on all sides of the war, her loyalty in question as the conflict rises. The young Lt-Col is struggling to find his place in the world around him; a protege on a pedestal he’s not sure he belongs on. General Brock is already eager for his next battle; but will it be a success? It’s up to you, the local militia, to keep the camp safe and help the troops move out within the hour, before disaster strikes. Lives are at stake; history could be changed. Will you be ‘In Time’?”

Live History3

The show was created for Fort Malden as Live History tailors its performances to local venues. Kitz called it a “quest based” show.

“We always try to put (the audience) in the pivotal moment of history,” he said.

Kitz added they were excited to be in Amherstburg and believed it to be “an interesting experience.” It was the first time they had performed at an actual fort.

Live History group planning performances at Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada

 

 

By Ron Giofu

 

An Ottawa-based touring group is bringing their live historical performances to Amherstburg.

The group, known as “Live History,” will be featured in over 50 venues in six countries in 2017 with one of those venues being Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada. There will be three performances May 6 and two more May 7.

“It’s probably like nothing you’ve ever seen before,” said Live History founder Jasmine Bowen.

The interactive performance – called “In Time” – will see the audience divided up and go off with one of the actors presenting the show. The description states: “Directly following the successful siege of Detroit, General Brock, his aide-de-camp Lt-Col Macdonell and you, his militia, have returned to Fort Amherstburg. The next great victory lies ahead, at Queenston, and morale is high. However, there are a few among you who are not as they appear. The War of 1812 created divided loyalties, and those who would do anything to see victory for their side. The local healer has family on all sides of the war, her loyalty in question as the conflict rises. The young Lt-Col is struggling to find his place in the world around him; a protege on a pedestal he’s not sure he belongs on. General Brock is already eager for his next battle; but will it be a success? It’s up to you, the local militia, to keep the camp safe and help the troops move out within the hour, before disaster strikes. Lives are at stake; history could be changed. Will you be ‘In Time’?”

In TimeWEB

“It’s completely interactive live theatre,” said Bowen.

There will be four historical characters portrayed during the performances, with each likely not to exceed 30 audience members.

Live History has partnered with Parks Canada and comes to Amherstburg with a story that is geared towards history relevant to the area. They worked with Fort Malden staff to come up with stories they could portray.

“We tell lost stories more than famous stories and it all comes together,” said Bowen.

Live History will travel to such locales as Whitehorse, Yukon, the United Kingdom and Bermuda this year, she added.

The May 6 performances are at 10 a.m., 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. while the May 7 shows are at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Tickets are $14.70 per person and available by calling 519-736-5416 or 519-562-0408. People can also e-mail ont.fort-malden@pc.gc.ca for details. Tickets are limited and the “In Time” show is recommended for people ages 14 and over.