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Youth earn $5,000 for Haliburton Heat Bank

Joseph Quigley

Two Haliburton Highlands Secondary School (HHSS) students earned $5,000 for Heat Bank Haliburton County through the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) Canada June 4.  

Bence Suranyi and Stefan Salaris beat out their Grade 10 civics classmates with their presentation on the Heat Bank.

The school-wide competition is part of the YPI program, which runs similar charitable contests in schools around the world.  

Suranyi said their presentation highlighted the success stories of the charity.

“The Haliburton Heat Bank is a less-known charity than the other ones that were competing,” Suranyi said. “I think that helped shed light on the Heat Bank.”  

“The stories that (Heat Bank co-ordinator) Tina (Jackson) gave were probably really moving because sometimes they were really tragic,” Salaris added. 

 The YPI initiative has run at HHSS for 12 years. The program goes into the curriculum as a graded project for the school’s civics class. The project requires students to engage with charities in their community and share what they have learned in a presentation. The top-five projects compete in front of the school, with the winning group earning $5,000 for their charity.

The group has donated more than $50,000 to local charities since it started running in Haliburton.  Teacher Paul Longo, who co-ordinates YPI at HHSS, said the program remains successful. 

“It gets Grade 10 students out in the community, visiting charities, asking questions, learning about what we do in this community that’s so important as far as volunteer work,” Longo said. 

Jackson said the charity, which provides firewood and heat to vulnerable people, has participated in projects for YPI before. But this is the first time the charity has won.  

“I am just so proud of the work that both of these youth did, in pouring everything into the presentation that won us the money,” Jackson said. “This is one of the largest donations we’ll likely receive this year.“

They were absolutely passionate. They believed in what we were doing,” she added.  

Salaris said to succeed in the competition, it is vital to choose a charity you care about.  “Pick a charity you believe in, like and would stand for,” he said.


Teen planet protector is an ‘Enviro-Hero’

Blake Parkinson is “over the moon” at his award. Submitted

 Blake Parkinson said he was “a little bored” at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, the Grade 8 student picked up a camera and started chatting about his passion: protecting the environment. 

Two years later, Parkinson hosts live discussions on social media, a podcast about sustainability and even a digital magazine. And, he’s been recognized for his work.

 Parkinson was recently awarded a youth Enviro-Hero award from the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust, after being nominated by Kirsten Sixt of the Lake Kashagawigamog Organization. “I was like ‘woah!’ I was over the moon with joy,” Parkinson said. The HHLT said Parkinson’s education initiatives and fundraisers show dedication to environmental education. 

He’s organized shoreline cleanups and a save beluga whales campaign at his school, as well as a World Wildlife Fund swim fundraiser at his family’s cottage on Black Lake. “It really started with my family and then I said you know what I want to encourage more people to be environmentally friendly,” he said. 

On his Planet Protectors Instagram page and website, Parkinson tells viewers how to make recyclable Christmas ornaments, shares news about animal protection on the podcast and has even started a digital magazine that summarizes international efforts such as the United Nation’s sustainable development goals. 

“My main goal is to encourage people to live more sustainably and think more about the environment in their everyday lives,” he said. 

Parkinson faces the camera with a confident smile. “You might not have thought about this, but sunscreen actually does have a negative impact on lakes,” he said, framed by tall trees lining the shores of Lake Kashagawigamog.

 It’s from an episode of Blake on the Lake, a series of environmental tips and tricks Parkinson delivers through The LKOs YouTube channel. “When we do really small things it is a big change,” he said, chatting about Planet Protectors’ daily sustainability prompts and tips. Some ideas Parkinson gives out are simple, such as unplugging electronics when not in use or using paper straws. 

“It’s those small things you can do,” he said. “Saving the planet doesn’t need to cost money.” He encouraged Highlanders to approach tough environmental issues such as the proposed shoreline preservation bylaw with an eye to the past and future.

 “Approach [issues] slowly, give it time. You also need to think more on the environmental side: how are animals going to be affected, how are ecosystems going to be affected?” he said. Parkinson said his dream job is to work for the U.N. on climate action. 

With scientists worldwide calling for urgent action to mitigate rising temperatures, he said change is possible. “I see hope, I see a world that is in our hands. We have to mold it the best it can be,” he said. “We don’t have that much time to do it, we need to act as fast as possible.” Parkinson and the other Enviro-Heroes will be recognized at an awards ceremony at a later date.

 Planet Protectors’ website: planetprotectorsca Follow Planet Protectors on Instagram @ planetprotectors_ca


Livestreaming a pandemic boon

Councillors from all four townships met Nov. 25 to discuss a services delivery review. Photo by Joseph Quigley

As a journalist, and member of the public, I often reflect on the pandemic and what changes it has imparted on our society.

Naturally, the list of cons often surpasses the pros.

However, there have been some silver linings for the fourth estate and I would argue that also translates to some wins for the general population.

For example, earlier this week I was able to attend the Rural Ontario Municipal Association (ROMA) annual conference.

That was because it was virtual. So was the 2021 one. In the pre-pandemic past, the conference was held in Toronto and it wasn’t feasible for a small-town newspaper such as ours to send a journalist there for the two-day conference. It would have been costly with transportation, accommodation and meals.

So, if we did a story – and we didn’t always – we relied on our municipal councillors to come back and tell us what had gone on.

On Jan. 24-25, I was able to watch it myself, either live or recorded.

For a newspaper editor, it was a win-win. As a taxpayer, I also did not have to foot the bill for our councillors to attend in-person. The con for them is that they enjoy the casual conversations that often arise at these conferences, making valuable connections. However, there is still the option of reaching out to someone who spoke out during a session and touching base in other ways. It does not have to happen in a bar with a drink in hand. 

In the same manner, I was able to attend the Ontario Municipal Association (AMO) conference. 

For the public, I think the live streaming of council meetings has been a pandemic gift. In the past, it has been difficult for some people to attend council meetings because they are held during the day and require driving to one of the municipal offices. Now, people can view from their homes either live or recorded. 

There are times when only a handful of people are watching, but on other occasions, such as the recent shoreline preservation bylaw meeting, there were close to 80 at some points during the meeting.

As a reporter, I can truthfully say that my reporting is more accurate now as well. I can go back and check what people have said. There is no longer an opportunity for subjects to say that they have been misquoted. 

The other real benefit to journalists, and some members of the public, is the livestreaming of court proceedings. In the past, we rarely, if ever, would drive to Lindsay to cover a court matter. Now, if there is something major on our radar, we can follow the proceedings.

Since the nature of the court system is a lot of deferrals, we are not wasting as much time waiting for matters to be finalized either as we might have in the past. Nor are we having to email the Ministry of the Attorney-General’s office or the courthouse in Lindsay to see what is going on with a particular case.

It is the type of access that we should have had all along. It is the type of access that we cannot be denied in future. After all, if we can improve our reporting, the public is better served. 


Tours explore winter life by snowshoe

Cold temperatures and regular snow mean Haliburton County’s forests, fields and riverside pathways are ripe for snowshoeing.

Minden Hills is launching three guided snowshoe walks across the township in January and February for those new to the activity and more seasoned trekkers alike.

The attraction is moving slowly through nature, and being able to take everything in at a really slow pace,” said Rick Whitteker, a longtime snowshoe enthusiast who’ll be guiding the tours.

The walks include the peaceful Snowdon Park, the ecologically-diverse Dahl Forest and a trek alongside the Gull River rapids, flowing fierce and fast beside snow trails.

Whitteker said snowshoeing is a way to appreciate wildlife which, in other seasons, move unseen.

Beside the Gull River, for instance, Whitteker bends down to inspect the miniature pawprints of a mouse that recently scurried past.

“You see animal tracks for instance, you see the story of the animal as it’s moving through nature, a glimpse of it,” he said. “It’s not something you can see in the other three seasons.”

It’s also a way to beat the winter blues. “[It’s about] getting exercise, being invigorated by being out in nature and getting your heart rate up. Especially in the winter when people hunker down a lot,” Whitteker said.

Each hike will begin with a brief introduction to the area and a chat about any safety precautions, however all three hikes can suit most walking abilities.

Whitteker said he tries to combine movement with a careful eye to nature interpretation, stuff he might see on the trail such as prints or vegetation with the “potential to create a discussion.”

Each hike costs $10 and snowshoes are available to borrow.

Snowshoe Snowdon will be on Monday, Jan. 31 from 1-3 p.m; Discover the Dahl on Monday, Feb. 14 from 1-3 p.m.; and Wild Ways of White Water on Feb. 28, from 1-3 p.m.

For more information contact Elisha Weiss at 705-286-2808 or


Ramsay brings pro experience to Huskies

After a 15-year love affair, Haliburton County Huskies head coach and general manager Ryan Ramsay thought he had closed the book on his hockey career when a serious hand injury forced him into premature retirement in 2015.

Playing for the Schwenninger Wild Wings in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga, Germany’s pro hockey division, Ramsay, 31 at the time, took a rogue puck off the hand during a regular season game. While the injury seemed innocuous at the time, x-ray results told another story.

“I completely shattered my hand. I had three major surgeries to try and fix it, but I could never get back to the level I needed to be at to play professionally,” Ramsay said.

It was a bitter pill to swallow. Since being drafted 13th overall by the Peterborough Petes in the 1999 OHL Priority Draft, Ramsay had been living the life of a professional hockey player. He played five seasons in the OHL, finishing top 10 in the league scoring charts in his senior year with the Plymouth Whalers.

After unsuccessful tryouts with the Nashville Predators and Carolina Hurricanes, Ramsay penned a three-year contract with the St. Louis Blues in 2004. He was immediately assigned to the team’s AHL affiliate, the Worcester Ice Cats, where he put up 18 points and 93 penalty minutes in 46 games in his debut season. Ramsay played two more seasons in the AHL before moving to Europe.

He played for six teams over an eight-year period in Germany and Italy.

“It was probably the best time of my hockey career,” Ramsay recalled.

When it all came tumbling down, Ramsay looked for a clean break. He moved back to North America, enrolling at Texas A&M University. He wanted to be a firefighter.

Upon graduation, and while applying for positions across the continent, Ramsay launched a hockey school, designed to teach youth the basics of the game. That transitioned into a part-time coaching role with a minor hockey team, which opened Ramsay’s eyes to a whole new world.

“I fell in love with coaching right away. Pretty well after my first day, I knew that’s what I wanted to get into,” Ramsay said.

He continued with his Ramsay Hockey camps until 2016, when he became head coach of the North York Renegades of the Greater Metro Jr. A Hockey League. He spent two seasons with the team, blossoming into one of the league’s top up-and-coming coaches.

It was a tough grind, though. The learning curve was steep, and Ramsay said he often looks back and laughs at some of the situations he found himself in during those fledgling months. Ultimately, he found success merging what he knew as a professional player with what he learned from some of his own coaches over the years.

“I’ve been coached by Pete DeBoer (Vegas Golden Knights head coach), Don Granato (Buffalo Sabres head coach) was the head coach during my first year in the AHL. Mike Vellucci (Pittsburgh Penguins assistant coach) was my coach at Plymouth in the OHL. Then, in Europe, I was coached by Dave Chambers, a legend who was with the Quebec Nordiques and Team Canada world junior teams.

“I’ve really tried to translate a lot of what I learned from them into the kids I’m coaching now,” Ramsay added.

He transitioned to his current role during the 2018/19 season, shortly after Haliburton resident Paul Wilson bought the franchise. Then known as the Whitby Fury, Ramsay spent 12 months in the front office before merging the general manager and head coach responsibilities ahead of the 2019/20 season.

Between running practices, studying tape, managing players and recruiting, the gig is a full-time job and more.

“It’s the first thing you do when you get up and the last thing you do before you go to bed. My wife’s a part of it, my kids breathe it every day. I wouldn’t have it any other way though, it’s a great game,” Ramsay said.

He had no qualms about moving north once the decision was made to relocate the franchise to Haliburton County. His wife, Hilary, grew up in the community, and the pair made frequent visits while they were living elsewhere.

“I always knew Haliburton was a great community, full of great people, but the support we have received since moving up here has been tremendous,” Ramsay said.


Boice proud to represent home community

TRENTON, ON - NOVEMBER 5: Joe Boice #5 of the Haliburton County Huskies follows the play during the second period at the Duncan McDonald Memorial Gardens on November 5, 2021 in Ontario, Canada (Photo by Amy Deroche / OJHL Images)

Growing up, West Guilford native Joe Boice felt he’d have to leave his hometown to chase his hockey dreams. Now, as a key part of the Haliburton County Huskies’ inaugural roster, he wants to show local youth they can forge their path to the big leagues in the Highlands.

The 6’3” power forward has been ever-present for the community’s new Jr. A franchise this season, suiting up in 29 games. While yet to register a point, Boice leads the team in penalty minutes and plays a crucial role in the checking game.

He’s often the first guy that head coach, Ryan Ramsay, turns to when he needs to inject some life into a game.

“A big energy guy, I’m a rougher kind of player,” Boice said of his style. “Definitely not much of a goal scorer, I just do whatever I can to help the team. If that means throwing a hit, going to the dirty areas, or making a defensive play, then so be it.”

Like teammate Ryan Hall, Boice represented the Highland Storm during his youth. He won an Ontario Minor Hockey Association championship with the team in 2015, before going on to play two seasons with the Central Ontario Wolves, based in Lindsay.

That move helped mature his game. Often playing against older, and bigger players, Boice said he learned a lot from his time playing AAA. That progression as a player led to an OJHL call-up in 2020. Boice featured in seven games for the Whitby Fury, getting his first taste of junior hockey.

“I remember loving it,” Boice said. “It was a big step, definitely a quicker game, but my goal was to always play junior. I made it.”

He committed to the team for the 2020/21 season, but COVID-19 had other ideas. Not content to simply wait on the sidelines, Boice spent his year off skating wherever and whenever he could. He worked on his stick handling, aiming to be a more complete player once he returned to the ice.

It was a dream come true when he learned that return would come in Haliburton County. “It’s definitely much better being at home. Just being able to play in front of my family and my home town,

it’s obviously a lot nicer playing for people that you know,” Boice said. “It’s extra motivation for me every time I step onto the ice when I look up to the crowd and see familiar faces everywhere, cheering us on.”

While he grew up idolizing Matt Duchene and Bernie Nicholls, NHLers that grew up in the Highlands, the County’s youth now have a new set of players to look up to through the Huskies.

“It’s definitely important, I think, for the younger kids. They can realize now that they can play good hockey in this community,” Boice said.

The path to junior hockey isn’t an easy one, he warned.

“Not every player is going to make it. Obviously, you have to have some skill, but I’d say commitment is the biggest thing you need. You’ve got to give 110 per cent all the time,” Boice said. “If this is what you want, you’ve got to give it all you’ve got.”


TLDSB plan champions student development

Trillium Lakelands District School Board director of education Wes Hahn introduced a new five-year strategic plan to trustees Jan. 25, saying it will help foster student development and achievement.

In the works since last spring, the plan outlines two goals Hahn said were designed to “create a future where students develop the competencies, understandings, selfconfidence, and resiliency to lead healthy, successful and fulfilling lives.”

The first goal surrounds supporting meaningful learning and success for students, while the second focuses on creating learning environments and experiences that foster equity, inclusion and belonging.

“We talked a lot about ensuring this plan is real, it’s authentic, it’s manageable, and, most importantly, narrowing down to areas that we can really focus on and not something that we just put on a shelf,” Hahn said. “We believe we’ve done that with this document.”

Vancouver-based Critical Thinking Consortium was brought in to assist. A key component was a public survey, which asked parents and guardians what they felt were the most important areas TLDSB should consider to support student achievement over the next five years. Nearly 5,000 people responded.

Covering 2022 to 2027, the strategy highlights four commitments.

“We will be adopting an ‘open to learning’ stance; monitoring our impact, which is critical; universalize and differentiate so that we can separate our community needs, or staff needs and our school needs and ensure there’s diversity across our system for how we plan; and unwavering commitment and focus on student achievement and well-being,” Hahn said. “Those are critical commandments that will guide how we go about our work with those particular goals.

“We are also going to commit to measuring and aligning our processes. The strategic plan acts as a guidance system, while our board improvement and equity plan serve as the measurement tool. That’s where we will, through the board plan, use our quantitative and qualitative data to measure our commitment in our process along our strategic plan. And it’s all aligned with our school improvement and equity plans. The better we are aligned, the more committed and focused we can be on achieving these goals.”

Trustee Judy Saunders said she liked the approach Hahn and his staff took in developing the new plan, saying it was easy to follow and outlined important, achievable targets. Vice-chair Stephen Binstock agreed, calling it “simple, but not simple- minded.”

Binstock told Hahn. “Now the hard work begins.”



By Sam Gillet and Lisa Gervais

Post-COVID improvements

The HKPR District Health Unit has identified 12 areas of staffing, workplace culture and operations to focus on as it plans a post-COVID-19 recovery.

A COVID recovery working group, established in the summer of 2021, spent September interviewing more than 100 staff about areas of improvement, and what the health unit did well throughout the past two years.

“The goal of this framework is to consider the impact of the pandemic and consider the lessons we’ve learned, rather than simply returning to a pre-COVID state,” said Lorna McLeary, a manager in the health promotion division.

She presented the working group’s findings at a Jan. 20, 2022 board of health meeting.

Some themes that arose during interviews included: continued engagement with community leaders; partners and volunteers; balancing the stress of working multiple roles; the importance of maintaining a feeling of tight-knit community on staff teams; program planning based on population size; prioritizing equal access to health services and maintaining the health unit’s public visibility.

McLeary said the results are a “starting point for decision-making” when it comes to the planning and execution of health unit programs.

Risk management update

Ontario health units are required to have a risk management plan detailing operational dangers and plans to minimize them. Chief medical officer of health Dr. Natalie Bocking said the health unit’s progress on implementing the plan has been “stymied by COVID-19 several times now.”

Developed in 2018, a risk management framework lays out eight top dangers the organization could face: failure to develop, implement and evaluate a robust people strategy; inadequate records management system; loss of funding; compromised personal health information; improperly managed procurement opportunities; noncompliance of infection, prevention, and control practices; Ontario Public Health Service program compliance and payroll fraud.

COVID drives communication uptick

Dr. Bocking said the HKPR communications team continues to be “extremely busy” with COVID-19 adding new tasks and initiatives to the department’s workload.

Along with facilitating 47 media information sessions in 2021, they fielded 2,201 media inquiries and issued 85 press releases.

The health unit’s website traffic has doubled to 2,674,418 webpage views and a 1,245 increase in the unit’s YouTube following.

Dr. Bocking said the health unit has focused on increasing the use of social media to spread health messaging, and user interaction on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter, which have risen since 2020.

Quit tobacco for good

If your New Year’s resolution to go tobacco-free in 2022 has already gone up in smoke, now’s the time to get back on track, the health unit said.

“If your goal is to quit in 2022, there are many resources available to help you succeed,” said Karen Taylor, a public health nurse with the HKPR District Health Unit.

Area residents 18 years and older are urged to sign up for STOP on the NET. If they qualify for the program, participants will be mailed a free eight-week supply of nicotine patches to help them quit smoking.

“Nicotine patches greatly improve the chances of quitting smoking, but some people may not be able to afford them,” Taylor said. “With STOP on the NET, nicotine patches are provided free of charge and this initiative has helped many people successfully quit their tobacco addiction once and for all.”

STOP on the Net also has many resources to assist people trying to quit, including Talking About Vaping videos that address different aspects of e-cigarette use.

“COVID-19 has been very stressful on people’s physical and mental health, and may lead to tobacco use for some individuals,” Taylor said. “It’s incredible what you stand to gain from going tobacco-free, and the good news is that you reap the benefits right away.”

Sexual health clinics on hold

The health unit has put a pause on offering sexual health clinics in the region due to its COVID-19 response.

It said it is “for the time being so that nurses and other staff can be redeployed to pandemic response.” The decision came as COVID-19 cases were on the rise in the region.

Clients who had an appointment booked are being contacted directly to make alternate arrangements.

The Health Unit encourages anyone with concerns relating to their sexual health to contact their primary care provider or attend a walk-in clinic.


TLDSB continues COVID recovery

TLDSB director of education Wes Hahn said three classrooms across TLDSB schools have temporarily reverted back to online learning over the past week due to outbreaks of COVID-19.

“We want students to remain in school, but we’re looking at sudden spikes or abnormalities in high illnesses within a classroom. That’s a particular concern for us, because it could mean further spread of the virus within the whole building,” Hahn said.

Impacted students and staff will be required to isolate at home for a minimum of five days before returning to in-person learning, Hahn said. He would not divulge the location of the impacted classrooms.

With public health no longer conducting PCR testing and contact tracing at schools, Hahn said a new absence reporting tool has been made available to the public, to help the board track the number of absences board-wide.

Hahn addressed talk of a 30 per cent “absenteeism threshold” that has been used by public health previously for outbreak tracking and to suggest temporary site closures.

“Once a school hits that mark, we are in direct contact with public health, but there’s more to it that just the absenteeism part … if we reach 30 per cent, that doesn’t mean we’re moving the school online or closing the school. A lot of those absences might be explained absences, where students are remaining home [at a parent’s discretion], taking a vacation, or doing something family oriented,” Hahn said. “We have to be careful that we don’t look at that 30 per cent mark and act too quickly.”

Hahn said he was actually encouraged by the COVID-19 numbers being reported by schools, saying there hasn’t been as many outbreaks since the return to in-person learning as he had anticipated.


Dysart budget second draft sitting at 5.5 per cent increase

Dysart et al council has trimmed some fat from its proposed 2022 budget, with a second draft proposing a 5.5 per cent tax levy increase for area ratepayers.

Municipal officials discussed the budget Jan. 14, removing several items that were included in the original document. Presented in December, the first draft included a tax increase of 7.56 per cent.

The new rate, presented before discussions began Jan. 14, is offset by around $130,000 in increased revenues and a decrease of $82,000 in operating and capital costs. Council would shave off an additional $35,000 through their later discussions.

Treasurer Barbara Swannell noted the proposed increase would see residential property owners pay an additional $16.35 per $100,000 of MPAC assessment in 2022, with commercial owners set to pay an extra $24.24 per $100,000 of assessment and industrial owners to pay a further $28.09 per $100,000 of assessment.

Despite the proposed increase, Swannell said Dysart still had, by far, the lowest municipal taxes in Haliburton County.

“The cost per $100,000 of assessment for residential property in Dysart was $297.44 in 2021. In Algonquin Highlands, at $344.10, the ratepayer is paying $36.66 more than if they lived in Dysart, or 12.3 per cent more,” Swannell said. “The trend continues in Minden Hills, who pay 29.1 per cent more. In Highlands East, residents pay 70.6 per cent more.

“A 5.5 per cent levy increase in 2022 still results in Dysart being the lowest tax rate within member municipalities in Haliburton County,” she added.

During the meeting, council signed off on hiring a new summer bylaw officer at an undetermined cost; to increase services at the Harcourt, Kennisis Lake and West Bay landfill sites ($6,133); increase volunteer firefighter pay by $2.50 per hour; and dish out approximately $70,000 in grants and donations to community organizations.

They decided against spending $10,000 on a new digital sign at the Haliburton welcome centre; said no to the Haliburton Highlands Museum hiring a summer employee at a cost of $11,100; and deferred decisions to hire new full-time staffers in the planning and parks and recreation departments at an annual cost north of $100,000.

In 2022, Dysart is projecting to spend just over $18.5 million. Municipal reserves sit at $3.6 million. Council will meet again to discuss the budget on Feb. 11.


Arts Centre Foundation casts first corporate sponsor

From left to right: Nigel Milne, assistant store manager, Dan Moulton, owner, Glen Rickerby, district general manager, Paul Walker, assistant store manager, Dan Manley, HHACF president, Drew Allen, board member and Michael Clipperton.

Haliburton County’s Home Hardwares are helping build a Highlands arts hub.

The Home Hardware Building Centre of Haliburton and Minden has donated $25,000 to the Haliburton’s Highlands Art Centre Foundation (HHACF), becoming the foundation’s first corporate sponsor. 

“We are very pleased and committed to supporting the HHACF in its mission to build and operate a world-class performing arts centre in Haliburton County,” said dealer-owners Dan and Emily Moulton in a press release. 

“We believe strongly in the economic impact that this project will bring to our region, and we would like to encourage all local companies and individuals to pledge their support in the coming year.” 

The money will help fund follow-up steps to an ongoing feasibility study that will lay out the what, where and how of a large-scale performing arts centre in Haliburton County. 

Nationally-acclaimed theatre consultants Janis A. Barlow & Associates are conducting the study, expected to be published by Spring 2022. 

“Word of the foundation is spreading, but in these early stages, it’s donations like this that take our fundraising campaign to the next level,” said foundation president Dan Manley. “We hope that fellow business owners share in Dan and Emily’s economic vision for the Haliburton Highlands.”