Metropolitan Homesick Blues

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Posts Tagged ‘summer


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“Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer…”

Ah yes, Richard, Duke of Glouster pontificating on how good things are…or can be…or at least appear to be. And in our realm of reality, as we look forward to summer…what is it that we have to wax poetic about?

Folks up here have just about had it with winter. I’ve heard many long time residents complain that it has gone on long enough. Those that take a break down south and return are dismayed to see nothing has changed. Winter hasn’t gone anywhere.

It is cold now. Some grass is showing. Ice is back in the river. And even though spring is just around the corner, the word is – enough!

What else? Well! Tim Hortons (after much controversy) is here and thriving. Walmart (after much controversy) arrived this winter. Is it hurting local business? One look down Port Elgin’s main street will have you wondering where all the cars are…they’re in Walmart’s gigantic parking lot. Are main street merchants suffering? Some say yes. Some say I told you so.

Still, Council forges on allowing monster Drug Store chains (with much controversy) to keep building bigger. How many drug stores does a population of approximately 12,000 people really need?

The Port Elgin library opens its doors with bright, new bigger space…and debt. Fund raising is tough these days.

There’s one hell of a debate at Council, in the newspapers, on-line, in editorials, and letters to the editor about the need (or not) for a new swimming pool. Everyone has an opinion and an idea of what and where it should be. Everyone, though, takes pause with the nine million plus price tag. There’s an insightful letter to the editor about it at Read it if you live in Saugeen Shores and be amazed at what is going on and what we seem to have gotten ourselves into.

There’s not much one can do about any of this…except tough it out. Things always look better in the warm sunshine.

Southampton Sign

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In my January 21 blog – Gateway – Signs of the Times I lamented the state of sign design in Saugeen Shores.  What concerned me most was the fact that the current design project initiated by Bruce Tourism for the two test communities, Port Elgin and Southampton, did not understand the long-standing image of either town.

I was concerned, mostly, for Southampton because that’s where I live. I, and many other residents, believe that the existing sign says it all. Simply take what is there and redesign it for the times and the flexibility of today’s media. In that blog I also suggested that,” the lighthouse defines the town.”

There were others, with more influence than a lowly blogger such as I, who felt the same. The challenge fell into the capable hands of Mike Myatt, Director of Community Services for Saugeen Shores, and Brad Smith who has lived in the area for the past two years.  Their collaboration has produced the perfect result.

The Oldest Port on the Bruce Coast

The Oldest Port on the Bruce Coast

Their proposed Southampton logo emulates the old and existing sign. It is a fresh new outlook…and it conveys the character of Southampton perfectly.

The Chantry Island concept with lighthouse and keeper’s house silhouetted against the sky with birds flying overhead catches the essence of Southampton’s main attraction.  All it needs now is the addition of “The Oldest Port on the Bruce Coast” line and their work is done. 


The Saugeen Times ( reports that the design will now move forward to Town Council and then to the signage designers, Corbin Design, to be incorporated into the signage strategy.

If they want my opinion I’d say “approved!” Now, let’s move forward with it. Summer is just around the corner.