Many Events Cancelled up to September First

At Tuesday’s regular Council meeting, Council debated what to do about events that are handled through the “Community Events Process” – and the list is long, see link below.  Some of the events have already been cancelled but a notable exception was the Sand Castle Festival.  The motion originally proposed provided for staff to decide what to do and specifically cancelled the Sand Castle Festival.  But Adam Bureau modified this to make it clear that all community events up to 1 September 2020 would be cancelled and then require that all new events from September 1st to December 31st must be approved by Council instead of being only approved by Staff.  In discussion it was made clear that this affected all Town and Community events that were either on Town property and/or required approval from the Town.

Final Approved Motion

ACTION RECOMMENDED: THAT Council terminates all community events approved through the Community Events process in the Town of Cobourg until the first of September 2020 due to COVID-19 Pandemic to ensure our residents safety; and

FURTHER THAT Council suspend the Delegation of Authority By-law No.040-2015 related to Community Events and request that any event currently scheduled and all new events from September 1st 2020 to December 31st in the Town of Cobourg must come to Municipal Council for approval with staff recommendations.

Notable cancelled events

  • DBIA Events: Girls Night out – June 5; Food and Music Festival July 18; Sidewalk Sale July 30 to August 2; Literature Event August 22;
  • Concert Band – Concerts in the Park, Tuesday nights July and August
  • OVA Beach Volleyball – July 10 & 11
  • Car Show in Victoria Park – July 19
  • Courtyard Summer Bar Series – July, August
  • Sand Castle Festival – August 1
  • Rib Fest – August 14 to 16

See the full list in the link below.

Adam Bureau commented that although the Province may open up more over the next month or so, it was ultimately up to Council to decide what to do in Cobourg.


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22 May 2020 12:10 pm

It may be “off topic” but thanks for the update re the cause and extent of the power outages. They affect us all, yet so often we are kept in the dark about the details by “the powers that be”. Deliberate pun. Couldn’t resist.

Merry Mary
22 May 2020 8:22 am

Are there any explanations, besides Squirrels, for the too many months of “Power Cancellations” either whole area, whole Town, or zone by zone within the Town? Pandemic or not, yet during the Pandemic these stoppages become more unsettling and more frightening for many.

John Draper
Reply to  Merry Mary
22 May 2020 8:57 am

See the News Update box for the latest on this.

Merry Mary
Reply to  John Draper
22 May 2020 9:25 am

Great News Update! That exact explanation has been heard for at least two years and hopefully the issue will be addressed! Much Thanks!

Reply to  Merry Mary
22 May 2020 10:43 am

I have lost power 3 times this week – off for a while then returns, Now we have the overnighter which ended this morning (then out again, then back on).

In this day and age one would think our hydro utility would have a better handle on things.

Paul Pagnuelo
Reply to  Merry Mary
22 May 2020 11:24 am

The Port Hope feeder station problems have existed since we moved to Cobourg over 10 years ago. The ongoing result has been flickering lights and I have always worried about how this might be damaging electronic devices.

As someone who is on oxygen 24/7, it’s pretty scary when the power goes out when sleeping. I want to thank Deputy Mayor Sequin for looking into the issue on my behalf.

Perhaps Council can work with MPP David Piccini in getting Hydro officials to finally deal with the problem.

Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
22 May 2020 11:30 am

If you are on oxygen 24/7 then why don’t you have a generator? What if it was a Province-wide blackout that lasted days?

Paul Pagnuelo
Reply to  CobourgPerson
22 May 2020 11:50 am

Generators don’t always turn on automatically.

Natural gas generators are best suited but can be very expensive to purchase. I appreciate your suggestion but it is not a realistic option for everybody. They certainly aren’t a solution for those who live in an apartment.

Oxygen companies will supply limited backup oxygen in canisters or liquid oxygen. But even so that does nothing to help when you’re asleep and the power goes out.

In this instance let’s work collectively in getting Hydro to fix a long standing problem.

Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
22 May 2020 12:02 pm

I agree, but even Hydro One doesn’t guarantee 24/7 power.

“We strongly recommend that customers who are dependent on electrically-powered medical equipment have an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) connected at all times, or have alternative arrangements in place in the event of a power outage.”

Paul Pagnuelo
Reply to  CobourgPerson
22 May 2020 12:11 pm

There are no guarantees of anything in life other than death and taxes.

Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
22 May 2020 3:42 pm

We bought a NG generator about 15 years , it was less than $5,000 installed , they are even better and cheaper now
Power goes out generator kicks in , power back on, generator stops
Main reason to buy it was in case we get another ice storm

any cost will be recovered when we sell the house

Reply to  Paul Pagnuelo
22 May 2020 1:40 pm

Electricity is often taken for granted, until it is gone. Part of the problem could be maintenance. Everything needs to be maintained or replaced. Politicians often seem more interested spending on new things than doing necessary repairs (how is the east pier doing?). Many Canadians spend more on cell phones than electricity. Are we willing to pay a little more for electricity to have a system that is better maintained and reliable? Or do we want the latest cell phone that is slightly bigger or has more camera lenses?

From what I heard Deputy Mayor Sequin is appreciated for working on issues that residents care about.

Reply to  Kevin
22 May 2020 3:45 pm

That $50 delivery charge on the hydro bill is for maintenance
Last October we were gone for a month , power used was less than $15 , still had a delivery charge of $50 😂

Reply to  Kevin
22 May 2020 7:38 pm

Some caring people think that electricity should be far more expensive. Not to fund better maintenance but to discourage usage.

21 May 2020 11:37 am

So you want to go swimming, me lad?
No problem. if you have the loot to own a cottage. Just drive to it and jump off the dock.
If you belong to the ‘great unwashed’ and want to go to a beach, you’ll have a problem in Cobourg.
The way some blokes want it now is that you have to live in in Cobourg.
If you have the money to have a second home in Cobourg, dive right in.
If you have a minimum wage job and can’t afford to live in Cobourg, you can always live in Baltimore because of lower taxes there.
You are allowed to spend your money in Cobourg, but get off the beach!
So what we may have here then is swimming based on social class.
Bollocks to that.

Alma Beston
Reply to  Curmudgeon
21 May 2020 1:40 pm

It’s a tough time and the beach us usually insanely crowded during weekends and holidays. Wait and se what creative ideas the town comes up with to manage social distancing. Covid-19 is not discriminatory, we have to respect protocols or our economy will be disastrously altered and too many people are already paying a big personal economic price for this fast spreading Covid virus.

Reply to  Curmudgeon
21 May 2020 4:16 pm

Curmudgeon…Take a shower😁

Canuck Patriot
Reply to  Curmudgeon
21 May 2020 6:18 pm

Please do all of Cobourg a big favour and crawl back into hiding in your mother’s basement. Nobody is interested in anything you have to say. You are worse than a Chinese Communist Party troll. My wish and I’m sure that of most if not all readers of this Blog would be for John to ban you from commenting.

21 May 2020 11:23 am

Wristbands, maybe? Like at a rock concert? Free if you can show local resident ID.

20 May 2020 4:27 pm

I never saw that model report Wally but any of these are only as good as the variables employed and the data inputted. A good friend’s daughter teaches and does research at McGill and is a Harvard trained PhD in Public Health. I have, since late February, been picking her brain about how these models are formulated and field tested. I see it as a version of hurricane forecasting. There are seven or eight international models and they rarely all agree. You look at what is called the cone of uncertainty see if it looks like it is moving your way and act accordingly. If it misses, great; if it hits, you are prepared. Not rocket science.

20 May 2020 4:00 pm

“Early decisions were made…” is not the current thinking though is it?! Suffice it to say there have been critical learnings from this experience.

20 May 2020 2:19 pm

This step is absolutely in the best health and safety interest of the people of Cobourg. That said, it is a small additional logical step to apply the same risk reduction reasoning to the Town’s beaches. A good number of the now cancelled events would not attract nearly the same size crowds as a hot summer weekend would to our beaches. I respect how difficult this decision is, and I will dearly miss swimming off the beach this season, but closing, or limiting access to the beaches to locals only (and on a prescribed spacing basis) is the right and prudent thing to do.

Reply to  MCGA
20 May 2020 3:14 pm

Yes MCGA we all understand your stance on the beach issue. Curious how the town would define and enforce the “local” piece – would an individual be considered local if they reside in Northumberland County or only Cobourg? You’ll likely get significant support from the anti-tourism, get off my lawn Cobourgians. Follow the lead of the Federal and Provincial Governments; Those are fact backed, science based decisions not emotional unlike some of the opinions expressed here. We can’t help it, its an emotional time.

Reply to  Rob
20 May 2020 4:08 pm

If you read the guidelines from the WHO and CDC they speak to how each area may have different risk profiles. And, based upon those differences the opening criteria and methodology could be modified. Some of our differences are: age profile, size and capability of our hospital, number of ventilators available, number of ICU staff available, etc. We are empowered to chart our particular course on this based upon our own particular needs and risks.
I am not looking to keep tourists out in ordinary times…this is extra ordinary and it requires efforts and steps that are unusual to say the least. I would rather have half or more of the Town thinking I was “chicken little” than have one person get sick, or worse, die because we did not take this fundamental step.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  MCGA
20 May 2020 3:31 pm

Questions for you MCGA: How many people will be required to enforce beach access only to locals? Where will the checkpoints be set up? And if Bob and his wife come to Cobourg to visit their family and park their car at their family’s residence and all of them walk to the beach, will the Cobourg family be permitted and their relatives from out of town refused? Will the people from Baltimore be excluded? Give us some metrics MCGA.

Reply to  Wally Keeler
20 May 2020 3:56 pm

Simple answer Wally is to employ our exiting snow fences as a visual barrier, if nothing else. Have limited access points manned by Town staff with support from by-law and police as required. (Not sure how many people the Lions use to control access for their events but probably similar numbers would be needed.) Employ the same, or similar, access criteria as we would currently use to dump garbage in the landfill, local ID, tax bill, etc.
Alternatively, employ a reservation system for predesignated and properly distanced patches of beach (this is already being employed in parts of Europe) Each patch could accept say four adults and 3-4 kids. Relatives and friends from elsewhere could not join the patch. The idea is to avoid bringing the infection into Cobourg so inviting relatives and friend from outside flies in the face of that goal. The marina already has a sophisticated booking system, perhaps that could be employed and modified to suite this need.
Obviously, it would be easier and safer to do what Council has already done for Town special events through September1, just shut it down.

Reply to  MCGA
20 May 2020 9:10 pm

A respite from what has been the “normal” summer at Victoria Park and beach might be an opportunity to sit back a take a look at and give sober thought to what we want the area to be in the future. Maybe we can look at this as an opportunity. Working from a clean slate.

Reply to  Kyle
21 May 2020 9:51 am

I agree and gave you a thumbs up. However, didn’t we already do that with the Waterfront Plan, Harbour Plan, Parks Plan and all the other plans and studies done by consultant after consultant?
(so many of them, they all blurred together for me)

Reply to  Frenchy
21 May 2020 11:06 am

Yes, Frenchy you are correct. The so called plans have been reactions to the sudden influx a few years back, to me, have been like playing a “wack a mole” game. At best everything has been reactionary to what has happened. Victoria Park and beach are a fine example of a small Town Victorian park area. For years the largest gathering may have been the church picnics near the bandshell. It was obviously not designed to be a Provincial or National Park.

If it was somewhat successful in closing the area down during this covid 19 fight. We might be able to ask ourselves the question do we want to go back to the summer tourist mecca or not? This question probably was never even on the table before.

Reply to  Kyle
22 May 2020 11:01 am

Cobourg is far from a tourist mecca…we offer a beach and several well coordinated weekend events throughout the summer. As a community we haven’t quite figured out how to pry the dollars out of visitors tight little hands. Frankly the downtown hasn’t really figured out how to pry the dollars out of local hands either. What I wouldn’t do to sit by the water Friday after work and have a glass of wine and crab cakes or exercise on the pier while the kids grab a snow cone from a local vendor or walk out to the lighthouse for a family photo at sunset. The Frink (although controversial) was one of the best decisions the town has made as it relates to a small addition to the waterfront but more needs to be done…