Opinion Editorial

Cheap shots for political points

Ralph Cipolla was Orillia's youngest- ever city councillor when he was first elected in 1977. Today, he is serving his second term as a councillor for Ward 2 and while there have been some big gaps in his lengthy tenure of public service, Cipolla is the city's most seasoned politician.

Preserving history

When Donald Porter resurrected the distinctive vertical neon sign after he purchased the former Geneva Theatre a few years ago, it was a little like turning back the clock. It reminded people of a bygone era when the West Street movie house was 'the' place to watch a movie.

Zach Hofer, 13, and his dog Lokie brought their Zach Makes Tracks campaign to Kingston city hall on Saturday. The Barrie teen is raising money for and awareness of children's mental health. (Steph Crosier, The Whig-Standard)

Do something positive

Two years ago, when he was 11 years old, Zachary Hofer wrote a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The precocious, blond-haired Barrie boy informed the PM that he intended, in 2017, to walk across the province to raise money to benefit youth mental health issues.

Paving move short sighted

When you own an expensive boat or a large home or a big property, it can be an onerous proposition. Some have rightly said that you don't own those things, they own you; they make constant, insidious and copious demands of your time, energy and financial resources. If you don't invest that time, effort and cash, the value of those expensive assets

Score one for Orillia

Imagine spending $30,000 to reach more than half a million people. Talk about a solid investment. Throw in an estimated $1-million economic impact to the community and it’s like scoring the game-winning goal in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals.

The joy of reading

These days, you often see parents and their young children crowded around a bright screen -- a smart phone or tablet or television -- viewing videos or looking at photos. It is a shared sensory experience that can be entertaining, educational and enlightening.

Bureaucracy blues

Bureaucracy at any level is frustrating. It can slow progress, mar development, strangle growth and cause frustration. Sometimes, it can even prove life-threatening.

Orillia's time to shine

Saturday was one of those magical days in the Sunshine City. The sky provided an idyllic backdrop of endless blue with nary a cloud in sight. The sun shone all day. And while it could have been warmer, the evening was clear and brilliant under a crescent moon.

Watch out for Big Brother

At one point, near the end of a debate Thursday night about regulating adult entertainment establishments, Mayor Steve Clarke said he wanted to “see the entrepreneurial spirit alive and well. I don’t want to be Big Brother.”

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Leave parking portfolio in city’s hands

To be blunt, the Downtown Orillia Management Board (DOMB) does not have a sterling reputation for being a unified, cohesive group that works well together. That was made painfully obvious earlier this year when many merchants expressed outrage at the DOMB’s decision to cancel the annual May sidewalk sale and alter July’s sale to a one-day event.

A reason to be proud

This week, the Pride flag was proudly raised at the Orillia Opera House to help mark Fierté Simcoe Pride Festival celebrations across the county. In municipalities throughout Simcoe County, events have been organized to ensure there are “safe and inclusive communities … that support and unite the lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans community."

HRC decision should come before election

It’s been three years since Charles Pachter’s ambitious and innovative concept to transform the disused portion of the former Huronia Regional Centre (HRC) into a cultural hub came to light.

Look on the bright side

Here's a shocker: The long weekend forecast is predicting showers and clouds. With the exception of last weekend, this summer, so far, has been less than ideal. It feels like it has rained, albeit some times very minimally, almost every day. The threat hovers almost constantly.

Delay on hydro sale a welcome move

Late last week, in what was, to many, a shocking decision, the Ontario Energy Board (OEB) decreed it was putting the brakes -- at least temporarily -- on a proposed pact between the City of Orillia, Orillia Power and Hydro One.

The line between vandalism and art

When is graffiti art? When is art vandalism? It seems as though answers to those questions depend, to a large extent, on the person providing the response -- as is deeply evident in the wake of a series of mysterious 'paintings' that have popped up in the downtown core in recent weeks.

Time for Aqua Theatre to take centre stage

This week, we learned the city has decided to restore the totem pole that has stood sentry for many years at Couchiching Beach Park. The funky totem pole is a unique part of the city's heritage and folklore.

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