Libro Centre

Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics Championship takes over Libro Centre


By Jonathan Martin


Around 1,300 elite gymnasts flipped, swung and leaped their ways through Amherstburg’s Libro Centre this past week.

The Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics Championships, hosted by Rose City Gymnastics, ran from April 5-8.

Diana Giorgi, who directed the event, said it “ran like clockwork.”  It was the first time the championships came to Amherstburg.

Jordan Battaglia performs
on the uneven bars during the Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics competition at the Libro Centre.

“We’ve been asked to host them again,” said Giorgi.  “If all the ducks fall into place and everything that needs to happen happens, it’s a possibility (we’ll host them again).”

Seventy judges scored the athletes and 250 coaches oversaw their performances.

Female and male competitions were held separately on the main ice pad and in the soccer domes respectively.  The women’s events included vault, beam, bars and floor.  The men’s comprised of vault, horizontal bar, parallel bar, pommel horse, rings and floor.

The Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics Championship came to the Libro Centre last Thursday through Sunday. Approximately 1,300 gymnasts from around the province displayed their talents over the four-day event.

The entire event was livestreamed by WeeStreem.  Recordings of the streams are available on the Gymnastics Ontario YouTube channel.

Colin Graham and his wife viewed their son Mackenzie Vaughan-Graham perform Friday. They thought the venue was “very nice” but did point out the surface they performed on in the indoor soccer facility.

“We’ve never seen anyone compete on grass before,” he quipped.

Rose City Gymnastics competitor Amy Robins, 10, won third place in her level – Aspire 2 – during the first day of the four-day meet.

“I think I did good,” she said. “I got third on everything.”

By “everything,” she meant third in vault, bar, beams and floor.

Amy Robins finished third in her category, Aspire 2. She competed for the hosts, Rose City Gymnastics.

Robins qualified for Easterns, which encompasses gymnasts in eastern Canada, later this year.

“It’s definitely the best I’ve ever done,” said Robins.

Robins, who trains five days per week for five hours a day, said it was nice to compete close to home.

“It was really nice because all of my friends were here,” she said.

—With files from Ron Giofu


ACS teaming with town’s recreation department on “Seniors’ Expo”


By Ron Giofu


Amherstburg Community Services (ACS) is teaming with the town’s recreation services department to bring a “Seniors’ Expo” to town this spring.

The Seniors Expo will be at the Libro Centre June 11-12 and ACS executive director Kathy DiBartolomeo said they are presenting the event due to Amherstburg’s population getting older. Currently, 18.1 per cent of Amherstburg residents are 65-and-over. When those 55-and-over are factored in, the senior population could increase to 25 per cent in five years, she noted.

“This is our first year doing it,” explained DiBartolomeo. “We’re partnering with the Town of Amherstburg. We’re hoping to showcase services that are in Amherstburg and Essex County. There’s many different services. We’re looking to promote Amherstburg and Essex County.”

According to a letter sent out by DiBartolomeo and manager of recreation services Rick Daly, the expo is inviting vendors who may have products or services geared towards the over-55 population. Those could include retirement or assisted living facilities, barristers and solicitors, doctors, optometrists, wineries, sports clubs, barber shops or hair salons, education institutions, service organizations, insurance and financial services, hearing centres, pharmacies, dance and fitness facilities, clothing stores, beauty and nail salons, financial institutions, dental offices, medical therapy, museums and galleries, golf courses, health food stores and pet stores.

“People can visit the booths and talk to vendors one-on-one,” said DiBartolomeo.

They also aim to have pickleball demonstrations, cooking demonstrations and food sampling and guest speakers and presentations.

“We want seniors to see what is out there and know what is available to them,” said DiBartolomeo. “We’ve been approached by seniors looking for different services in the area.”

DiBartolomeo said they want seniors to “stay active, healthy and informed.”

For more information on the Seniors Expo, contact DiBartolomeo at 519-736-5471 or People can also contact Daly at 519-736-5712 ext. 2122 or

“We’re looking forward to it,” said DiBartolomeo.

Organizers pleased with first season of Amherstburg Ladies Hockey League



By Ron Giofu


The organizers of the Amherstburg Ladies Hockey League are pleased with their first season.

The re-branded ALHL concluded its first season under the father-daughter duo of Marc and Carly LeBlanc with the Lisa Westlake Windsor Chrysler team winning the championship in exciting fashion with three goals in the final minute of the championship game en route to a 4-2 win over The Trophy Boys.

The league had four teams this year with Team defeating the Dr. Carly LeBlanc D.C. Team in the third place game. In addition to being an organizer, Carly is the goalie on the team she sponsors.

“It was amazing,” Carly said of the 2017-18 ALHL season. “We couldn’t have asked for a better first season.”

Marc said it was the women playing in the league who made the league as good as it was. A total of 58 players participated this past season.

The Lisa Westlake Windsor Chrysler team celebrates their recent championship in the Amherstburg Ladies Hockey League (ALHL). Convenors Marc and Carly LeBlanc celebrated the league’s first season with them running it.

“We tried to make it fun for them,” he said.

“Everyone seemed to have a good time,” Carly added.

The LeBlancs don’t have any plans on expanding the league beyond four teams next year and Carly noted that most of the players from the recently-concluded season are likely to return for the 2018-19 season.

“There will, in fact, be a next season,” said Carly.

The ALHL ran for 25 weeks, with the first two weeks being practice weeks in order to give the experienced players a chance to get into game shape while new players get a chance to learn the finer points of the sport. It is a format they will look to continue next year.

The ALHL played their games Sunday nights on the Movati pad at the Libro Centre.

“The experienced players are always fantastic at showing the new ladies the ropes,” explained Carly. “Sportsmanship is always a key component of this league. That’s what helps it run so smoothly.”

The Trophy Boys team were the second place finishers in the Amherstburg Ladies Hockey League.

According to the ALHL’s website, the league is described as a “non-competitive hockey league for women of all ages and all skill levels to play hockey and have some fun! Our league is non-competitive, strictly non-contact, and we strive to make sure that all players are able to enjoy themselves both on and off the ice.”

The website can be found at while their Facebook page is

While there is a waiting list for women hoping to get into the league, Carly said those interested in participating next season are still invited to e-mail them at

“We want to thank everyone who participated this year,” Carly added. “We’re very excited about coming back next year.”


“Battle of the Bands” showcases skating skills


Skate Amherstburg held its 47th annual ice carnival March 25 at the Libro Centre.


This year’s theme was “Battle of the Bands” with skaters from all levels participating and showing what they have learned this skating season.

The Libro Centre was bustling with activity as Skate Amherstburg also hosted the Deveau-Winfield Synchronized Skating Competition the same weekend.

There is a full page of colour photos in the March 28 print issue of the skating carnival.

A Facebook album will be added soon.

Photos were taken by Jonathan Martin.

Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics Competition almost here


By Ron Giofu


The Ontario Provincial Artistic Gymnastics Competition is coming very soon.

The gymnastics meet will be at the Libro Centre April 5-8 and will be hosted by Rose City Gymnastics. The top athletes in Ontario will be participating with athletes coming in from as far as North Bay and Ottawa.

The main ice pad and soccer domes will be buzzing with activity, with women’s gymnastics runs being Thursday (April 5) from 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. in Gym A and Gym B from 8:30 a.m.-8 p.m. On Friday, events run from 8:30 a.m.-7:45 p.m. in Gym A and 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m. in Gym B.

On Saturday, women’s events run in Gym A from 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. and Gym B from 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday from 8:30 a.m.-4:45 p.m. and Gym B from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

The men’s gymnastics runs are scheduled for Friday (April 6) from 11 a.m.-9:20 p.m., Saturday 9:40 a.m.-8 p.m. and Sunday from 9:40 a.m.- 1 p.m.

More volunteers are needed, specifically on April 4 at noon to help set up the equipment.

Should the public have any questions regarding volunteering, please contact Rose City Gymnastics by e-mail at or phone 519-999-2802. Forms are also available at the Libro Centre.

Admission will be by cash only.

Prices are $12 per adult (18+) for a one-day pass, $20 for a two-day pass and $28 for a three-day pass. Seniors (55+) and students (11-17) will have to pay $8 for a one-day pass, $13 for a two-day pass and $18 for a three-day pass. Cist for children (6-10) are $5 for a one-day pass, $8 for a two-day pass and $12 for a three-day pass.

Children five-and-under will be let in for free.