Managing Crowds at Cobourg’s Beaches

Cobourg residents and Councillors have expressed concern about managing the crowds attracted to Cobourg’s beaches – this has been a special concern with the onset of the pandemic but even in normal times, beach crowds can be a problem.  To address this, the Town created a survey and asked the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee (PRAC) to generate recommendations on “how the municipality can manage the popularity of Victoria Park Beach.” Survey results were published in March (see link below to Cobourg News Blog report) – and with the help of Community Services Staff, the PRAC have now published their recommendations and will ask the next Committee of the Whole to accept them.  It’s quite comprehensive but being recommendations and not actually actions, they require Council to make decisions.  But it’s a first step.

To make the next steps more likely to happen (that’s my interpretation), the recommendations include a suggestion that “an internal Working Group be established …… to enhance collaboration in the management of the waterfront, including Victoria Park Beach, the Cobourg Harbour and the West Beach.”  It’s expected that at least some of the recommendations will be approved as part of the 2022 budget process so they will be in place for the 2022 summer season.

1 July 2011

Photo was taken on July 1st 2011 and is (or was) typical of a “normal” year.

Summary of Recommendations

  • Improve communication with more signs, a dedicated web page* and leaflets to impacted neighbourhoods.
  • Improve amenities: More washrooms, add change rooms, more garbage bins, add cigarette waste recycling receptacles in waterfront parking lots, install water bottle filling stations in Victoria Park.
  • Enhance bylaws about smoking, cannabis, glass bottles on beach and tents on beach. Increase fines from $105 to $250.
  • Improve enforcement by increasing the number of by-law enforcement officers on-duty during peak times.
  • Major Events. Consider making Council approval necessary for major recurring events.
  • Provide Lifeguards and establish a capacity for the beach as part of the emergency management process and then monitor. (The cost of lifeguarding Victoria Park Beach is approximately $100,000 per year).
  • Significantly increase beach area parking rates and review parking rates along the waterfront. Care should be taken to avoid pushing beachgoers into the downtown for cheaper parking and creating parking shortages.
  • Consider establishing designated or discounted parking for Cobourg residents.
  • Consider installing pay and display machines on residential streets near the beach.
  • Consider providing a shuttle service during major events and peak times and explore ways to utilize parking at Donegan Park.
  • Consider allowing pop-up businesses* to operate with a permit – perhaps allow rental of sun shelters and beach chairs.
  • Beach access fees are inadvisable due to the cost of infrastructure/fencing, staff time for enforcement, and the imposition of barriers to walkers along the waterfront.
  • Increase by-law enforcement patrols along the West Beach with more signs and perhaps washrooms.
  • Establish an internal working group to enhance collaboration in the management of the waterfront, including Victoria Park Beach, the Cobourg Harbour and West Beach.

* A couple of the recommendations have already been implemented – dedicated beach page and pop-up businesses on waterfront.

Since some of these involve additional spending, further work is required to provide these costs to Council for the budget process.  If fines and enforcement are increased, then additional revenue may help.

The report does not touch on whether there is any measurable benefit to the Town created by beach tourists.

Meanwhile, Council will soon be deciding whether to revisit their decision to close the beach on Weekends and Holidays.

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Rachael
23 July 2021 1:55 pm

As a resident, I can say that the benefit to me, and all the caregivers and their children that use the beach (and my older friends that sit, walk, swim, bike, camp, walk their dogs etc. along the boardwalk and on the beach) is NOT zero. Lake Ontario and Cobourg beach is invaluable to many. Many residents of Cobourg enjoy the waterfront for various reasons and activities. Many older folks have visitors that come to enjoy the beach as a family, and the value of social interaction is not zero. Just because we can not put a financial cost to it, does not mean it is not valuable. This is a real societal issue that is becoming more of an issue everyday through the pandemic, and climate crisis. I love the proposed slogan mentioned by someone on John’s blog, “it’s cooler by the lake”. When I am dead and gone, hopefully my kids can easily access the cool air and water provided by Lake Ontario as the world heats up around them. If we can’t see the value now, maybe we can think about what value it might provide in the future when the heatwaves are more frequent and intense? Just back from Tobermory. Slept, ate, went to the beach, shopped, took the ferry etc. with everyone respecting Covid safety measures. Couldn’t park ANYWHERE without paying for parking (except motel). All pay-and-display. Charge the cars, not the beach goers. Provide parking passes for residents that need them (no driveways etc.). This is what other municipalities are doing. As a minimum we could implement the best practices of similar towns with beach access. What boggles my mind is that those who do not use or enjoy the beach at all (and believe that the beach provides zero benefit to them), are… Read more »

ben burd
14 July 2021 3:43 pm

Just read the many many pages of comments, mostly whines about ‘out of towners’, ‘how can we make visitors pay?’, ‘shut the beach down to out of towners’ On and On the report goes.

However a ray of sunshine came through with this gem of a comment buried in the middle of the carps and whines ………. “Stop letting the Cobourg residents complain about out of towners coming in! It’s selfish and annoying.”

Last edited 9 days ago by Ben
Ken Strauss
Reply to  ben burd
14 July 2021 6:32 pm

Ben, if you feel so strongly that discouraging outsiders is selfish why don’t you offer to pay 100% of the additional costs? Your generous offer would be a true ray of sunshine!

ben burd
Reply to  Ken Strauss
14 July 2021 7:11 pm

Ken if you are so good with figures just tell me how much of your tax bill is used for cleaning up the beach, I am sure it is less than a cup of coffee when put through your tax bill. Let’s be realistic here and actually see the real cost of cleanup – I am sure you could afford it!

But then you have to make the calculation of the “homegrown cost” as opposed to the pesky out of towners “extra costs”

So let’s see the real costs broken down into the two categories. I’d bet you would never find out because of the fact we don’t segregate the users.

So let’s not be silly and talk of additional costs when you have no way of calculating them.

Another complication – how do you know it is only the “out of towners” that produce the garbage?

Last edited 9 days ago by Ben
Informed
Reply to  ben burd
14 July 2021 9:50 pm

When you look at the situation using a cost benefit analysis equation the benefit is next to zero in the form of tourist dollars and all the expenses are for the taxpayer to absorb. It doesnt really matter how much it is. It adds up to alot with little benefit to the Cobourg taxpayer.

ben burd
Reply to  Informed
15 July 2021 6:12 am

That wasn’t the question, informed. I am not interested in the cost benefit analysis, which is worthless when compared to the ‘common good’. How much extra is it on my tax bill to pay for the ‘additional costs’ produced by the out of towners’?

If you admit that you really don’t care how much it is, then what is your argument?

Can we put you down as a person who doesn’t like ‘out of towners’

Ken Strauss
Reply to  ben burd
15 July 2021 8:24 am

Ben, no reasonable person wants to pay for something with no benefit. Whether the cost for every family is a cup of coffee, a steak dinner or a world cruise, why should we pay? Many in Cobourg are having trouble affording food for their tables. Any amount is an unnecessary expense which, sadly, also results in an inconvenience to Cobourg residents with no compensatory benefit.

ben burd
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 July 2021 11:30 am

You asked me to pay the ‘additional costs’ I asked you to calculate them. You now say you object to paying anything “because any amount is an unnecessary expense”

I can only conclude that if you measure anything you do by a monetary scale I find that unfortunate and you obviously know the price of everything but the value of nothing!

Ken Strauss
Reply to  ben burd
15 July 2021 1:53 pm

…you obviously know the price of everything but the value of nothing!

Ben, you have it completely backwards regarding out-of-towners at the beach. I don’t know their cost because the town doesn’t make the information available. However, I do know their value to our residents. It is zero.

Informed
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 July 2021 2:27 pm

BAZINGA!

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 July 2021 9:48 pm

“It is zero.” How pathetic! How myopic. It suggests that Victoria Park / beach attendance by non-residents has zero value to “our residents” has any value other than monetary value. That is reductio ad absurdum; to reduce a human being as only a monetary expense. There is tremendous social value with these beachniks. I grew up on that beach, thru childhood, thru teens, thru youth. It was that way for every baby boomer I played with in Cobourg. All those teens who got a summer job in the Park were paid and would spend their summer earnings in local clothing stores and whatever else they needed for college or university in Sept. I suspect that summer park jobs students still spend locally prepping for post-secondary. All of Cobourg’s youth hung at the beach. Danced in The Pav. Cobourg students see each other day after day month after month until summer comes and they see healthy young bodies from out-of-town. Lots of wonderful flirting and networking. Young people who came from Toronto were especially welcome. How cool is it when the Cobourg student learns that her new beach friend will be going to Ryerson (or UofT, etc) and hey wouldn’t it be a good idea if we could share an apartment together. I did it. Several others did it. A few did it not to attend higher school but to start their new life in a big city. I suspect that Cobourg students and youth continue network and play with non-residents. That is social value. YouTube has hundreds of videos of Cobourg; the vast majority are produced by non-residents who invariably enjoyed their time. (Cobourg Tourism squanders money on production of mediocre videos; some visitors produce better) The point is that many of those videos are made by people who are… Read more »

Rob
Reply to  Ken Strauss
16 July 2021 2:19 pm

Ken
I find your distain for people from outside Cobourg using the beach and the suggestion that there is “zero” value added as a result of visitor is troubling. I was an outsider who used the public Victoria Beach – I believe its still public. I have since moved to Cobourg, built homes here, am a partner in a small business here, work full time in town, contribute to the local economy, raised children here (who by your definition would now be considered outsiders and adding zero value). As a local I enjoy the beach throughout the summer, including weekends, special events and volleyball weekday evenings. I’m one of countless, similar non-value adding stories…

People bring money to the beach everyday … if the community lacks the creativity to separate visitors from the contents of their wallets, shame on us. The story of charging people to use the beach, is like reading a old newspaper….better to line a bird cage with it.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Rob
16 July 2021 5:07 pm

Rob, I don’t understand your comments regarding outsiders. If you live here, work here and are raising a family here then you are not an outsider. Only one poster on this blog thinks that you have to have been born here; I certainly wasn’t! The zero value outsiders come to Cobourg with their food and drinks, park on residential streets to avoid paid parking, enjoy our free beach, use our free restrooms and then leave.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 July 2021 8:42 pm

When you have specified and enumerated the “additional cost“, then that can be the starting point of a conversation. As it is no one has a clue what the cost is, and without that, then there is a no case whatsoever. As it stands now, “additional cost” is an empty phrase.

Informed
Reply to  ben burd
15 July 2021 2:34 pm

Put me down as a person that thinks our Town is being taken advantage of from out of Town day trippers. I wouldnt feel this way if i felt that they contributed as much or more than what the tax payer spends maintaining the beach.Of course,feel free to put whatever spin on it you like for the “common good”

ben burd
Reply to  Informed
15 July 2021 3:16 pm

I would just hope that none of the anti ‘outsiders’ ever have to vacation, daytrip or even venture out of their own houses because if they can’t be hospitable to others they don’t deserve to ever be welcome anywhere else!

In other words don’t ever take a vacation outside Cobourg!

Last edited 8 days ago by Ben
Wally Keeler
Reply to  ben burd
15 July 2021 9:57 pm

They have no sense of social value whatsoever. Their sense of community bonding is griping and grousing over $$$$$$ exclusive to anything else.

Informed
Reply to  ben burd
16 July 2021 11:32 am

When I take a vacation i dont expect a free ride. If I believe there is value i dont mind paying. If i dont,then I go elsewhere. No one forces people to use a free beach. You call that not being hospitable? Go down and offer some free hotdogs if you want to make some new friends.

ben burd
Reply to  Informed
16 July 2021 5:17 pm

Go down and offer some free hotdogs if you want to make some new friends.”

What should I make of this remark? It doesn’t even make sense! Obviously a remark made by a person who retorts to schoolyard insults; that just means the intelligent argument has been lost!

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Informed
15 July 2021 9:54 pm

Basic question: how much does it cost taxpayers to host beachnik daytrippers? I bet you don’t have a clue either, like Ken Strauss, like everyone. Perhaps you could specify some of the expenses that they cost.

Informed
Reply to  Wally Keeler
16 July 2021 11:22 am

Your question is irrelevant. Do I really need to list all of the costs to make my point. Get your head out of the sand. The costs are there no matter who uses the beach. Its you and Ben that want to make it look like its a beef with out of town folk. Guess what….thats who mostly uses our beach on the weekends. The Town has a potential revenue source to offset costs thats not being explored. Please dont ask for the details. You have sung that song too often. BTW you can reminisce about the good old days at the beach and the Pav but sooner or later you should realize that those days are gone.

ben burd
Reply to  Informed
16 July 2021 5:20 pm

Its you and Ben that want to make it look like its a beef with out of town folk.”

What a lot of rot, I could use more profane language but the blog doesn’t belong to me.

The majority of comments in this thread support two things: one charge for parking and beach use and penalise the out of towners that use the beach by imposing penalties that residents would not have to pay.

If that’s not a beef I don’t know what is!

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Informed
17 July 2021 11:02 pm

Those days certainly are gone. That is why reminiscing is required.
Guess what — many of those beach goers come in from New Amherst, Baltimore, Cold Springs, Port Hope, Grafton, Wicklow, Roseneath, Creighton Heights, Camborne, Centreton, etc. They make most of the “out of town folk” and you put it.

I will ask for details. If you went to Town Council with your project to charge access to the beach, you an be certain that they will ask questions asking for details. Obviously you and the other individuals lack details, especially in execution.

Get your head out of the sand because Town Council has already declared your notion as a non-starter. Rightly so.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Informed
15 July 2021 8:37 pm

cost benefit analysis equation”

What a buzzword cliche. Reductio ad absurdum. So simple ain’t it.

The point is that you do not have a clue what the “additional cost” of the non-res beachniks is. Nobody does. Until the “additional cost” is specified and enumerated, the whole issue will remain nothing more than a brainless call to set up an ugly system to charge access to the beach.

Informed
Reply to  Wally Keeler
16 July 2021 11:23 am

Its better than a Facebook poll thats been used to make decisions

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 July 2021 8:28 pm

Yes, it would be a ray of sunshine, but the suggestion is without substance. No one knows what the “additional costs” are. Perhaps you could enumerate them.

Bill Thompson
Reply to  ben burd
17 July 2021 1:37 pm

Why are people who don’t agree with some issues that exist and have their own opinion about them are considered by some, of being “whiners”.
What is the common term to describe those who do the accusing?

Last edited 6 days ago by Bill Thompson
MCGA
14 July 2021 12:18 pm

Let us return to the fundamentals of overcrowding for a moment. You can not limit overcrowding by raising parking fees unless you push those fees beyond Toronto levels. So, if many people, from wherever, show up for the beach, how do you limit how many go on the beach, if there is no physical way to limit access? Now, how many physical ways are there to limit access to a venue? If you don’t want one, you gotta have the other. Or you take Wally’s approach and make it a free, free for all with the Cobourg taxpayers paying the freight. I think “generous with other peoples’ stuff Wally” should volunteer to pay for the Lifeguards since they will be working the hardest in this scenario. I’m sure the limerick business pays good.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  MCGA
15 July 2021 10:15 pm

What a pity that the Town poured cold water on the scheme to charge beach access. I have told people that such a scheme will never happen. It will never happen because no Cobourg resident has ever appeared before Council to articulate a cogent and coherent argument supporting such a scheme. Bluster and blabber about the issue in an inconsequential blog does nothing to advance the issue.

Sandpiper
14 July 2021 10:10 am

Here’s a thought
Why not ask each of the Council and Recreation / Planning Department to staff
acknowledge that they have read all the Posted comments With respect to this
Draper article Just so that we the Residents Know that our Elected Officials are actually listening to us . Just sign in and say acknowledged . Then we would have to read the same article s and
repeat regurgitated material about the Beach 4 times a yr. year after year when council wants to look busy . Wouldn’t that be COMFORTING to know council is interested in its Constituents
concerns and not of some high priced Consultant that does not live here .

Frenchy
Reply to  Sandpiper
14 July 2021 7:29 pm

Rest assured that all council members read this blog on a regular basis.

Small town lover
12 July 2021 10:31 am

Leaflets, signs, more washrooms, change rooms, more bylaw officers hired, more lifeguards hired, pay and display machines installed. Will the increase of parking rates pay for all this? No,
our residents will be paying with taxes which are already very high.
Prince Edward County introduced measures ahead of the summer months in order to manage their visitors and make some money to pay for their expenses starting June 1st till September.
No Parking fees $400 up from $35 until Oct. 31.
There is a Wellington Beach charge of $10 each on weekends and holidays. Local residents do not pay but will require a pass. Perhaps our people should speak with their people and find out If it is working well for them, before we spend a huge amount of money with nothing in return.

Informed
Reply to  Small town lover
12 July 2021 1:56 pm

Our beach is a “cash cow” that has ended up as an huge expense to the taxpayer. Its a “gift horse”. The Town needs sources of revenue other than tax increases every year and it is right under our noses.

MCGA
Reply to  Informed
12 July 2021 2:56 pm

That is self evident to any but those with the most limited intellectual capacity and imaginations. Unfortunately, in our midst we have Covidiots and the like who suffer from myopia. Mediocre minds rarely grasp the future and never provide genuine community benefit or direction. Town staff never attempted to quantify a cash flow for a pay to play mechanism. They tilted the survey response by indicating, in parens, that there could be significant costs. If instead they had said, there could be profit, what do you suppose the response would have been. You can craft a question in a way, to compel the answer you want…an old law school approach: asked of the defendant – When did you stop beating your wife? How does one answer that? Do you really believe Town staff wanted an honest answer? Instead the Cobourg taxpayers will continue to foot all beach related bills and have to pay higher prices to park in Town just to get to their beach. That formula only makes sense to candidates for village idiot.

Old Sailor
Reply to  MCGA
12 July 2021 3:58 pm

MCGA: This whole scenario reminds me of my tenure as Treasurer of a very large Church. The Business types like me wanted to take care of the Ministers, Sunday School leaders and admin staff and keep the Church structure in good working condition. And give the balance away to worthy causes. The Save the World Group had no concept of money management and were constantly dreaming up ways to give money away, far in excess of what was available. Usually for projects which were of no benefit to the Church or to the local community. Unfortunately the folks at 55 King Street West appear to have few of the Finance types on board and an abundance of the Save the World group in their ranks. Nor do they put the interests of the Cobourg taxpayers first and foremost. They keep wanting to do the same old thing at the beach and watch the situation worsen as the number of GTA beachgoers gets bigger and bigger. I even note a consideration to have new pay parking on residential streets near the beach. How stupid is that? Who would like to sign the letter notifying Cobourg taxpayers that they now have to pay to park in front of their home? Can’t wait for the next election.

MCGA
Reply to  Old Sailor
12 July 2021 10:03 pm

It is too easy to fall back, reflexively, on the answers of the past. In the military we would challenge the status quo by saying: “The Army is 200 years of tradition unmarked by change.” A portion of our community is equally moribund in their problem solving approach. Look at the handful of the more outspoken Covidiots as but one example. If you believe simply charging higher parking fees is the best answer to our situation than you too can win a Nobel prize in literature for your Nantucket limericks. We need to look beyond the dumbest kid in the class for intelligent answers. We also need to ask our leaders to do the same.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  MCGA
13 July 2021 8:21 am

The first step in solving a problem is to admit that there is a problem. Many on Council and even some of the posters here think that a beach crowded with visitors is a sign of success or even a “human right” that must be protected. Until we agree that visitors add to Cobourg’s taxes with no benefits to the residents, there will never be a solution.

Rob
Reply to  Ken Strauss
13 July 2021 9:20 am

I suppose we could also agree to the former – that a crowded beach may be a indicator of success (economic, social, health, etc..) and freedom to access public spaces in a democracy is in fact human right. Certainly a beach with a fence, no trespassing signs and fines for off-hours access is an indicator of something different. Finally keep in mind that visitors to the beach does not necessarily mean visitors to our town, country or region – MANY locals take advantage of the beach.

MCGA
Reply to  Rob
13 July 2021 10:01 am

Not sure that a crowded beach indicates genuine success. It may simply mean you are giving something good away for free and people will take full advantage of getting good free stuff. Many beaches have fences and designated access points. Many beaches prohibit walking through the dunes or other sensitive areas. None of those feel or look like a prison or a zoo. An excessively crowded beach may indicate the locals are also squeezed out of enjoying it, while they alone pay for its keep, and have to pay excessive parking fees for their now limited privilege.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  MCGA
15 July 2021 10:24 pm

An excessively crowded beach may indicate the locals are also squeezed out of enjoying it,”

That is a crock. On its busiest days I have never felt squeezed out of enjoying it. The use of the word “may” shows a degree of uncertainty towards your contention (spin), a contention without merit.

ben burd
Reply to  Ken Strauss
16 July 2021 6:20 am

Until we agree that visitors add to Cobourg’s taxes with no benefits to the residents, there will never be a solution.”

This statement has to be challenged, we cannot agree on this so forget the concept!

Kyle
Reply to  Old Sailor
16 July 2021 7:49 am

Socialism works well until the people paying for it run out of money.

Bill Thompson
Reply to  Informed
12 July 2021 3:49 pm

I think I understand the definition of a cash cow.
What I don’t understand is how the beach could be one when the majority of people utilizing it bring everything with them for a free day(s) at the beach.
The upkeep maintenance of the beach ,filtering the sand ,garbage pickup, cleaning etc. costs….
Where does the incoming revenue for the town enter the equation ?
Was the past failed proposal to have bouncy castles on the water etc.a part of the cash cow expectations?
Canadian Coney Island ?

Informed
Reply to  Bill Thompson
12 July 2021 7:13 pm

In simply terms….the beach is popular and overcrowdwd at times so you fiqure out a way to charge for its use. We seem to worry more about offending people that dont pay taxes and keeping everyone happy. Its a business and if was treated as one its evident that its losing money ie. Potential revenue right under our noses.btw. There is no need for presentations to council. Explore the idea,contact other municipalities,get ideas and bring back some data to at least explore the idea and see how much money is being LOST by not capitilizing on the crowm jewel.

Last edited 11 days ago by Informed
Bill Thompson
Reply to  Informed
12 July 2021 8:56 pm

I would suggest the downside is it becomes just another overcrowded beach.
The more popular it becomes ,the less attractive it becomes and less available to the local people.
I’m sure there is no shortage of other locations that sacrificed the character and attraction for locals in the “moving forward” mantra goal of the pursuit of the mighty dollar.

Informed
Reply to  Bill Thompson
12 July 2021 9:30 pm

I believe we are the threshold of palatable tax increases that the taxpayer is willing to accept. I believe we must look at the revenue side of the equation to offset spending. We could at least capture some of the expenses to operate the beach. By the sound of things we are adding even more expense with what has been outlined.

Last edited 11 days ago by Informed
JimT
Reply to  Bill Thompson
13 July 2021 4:29 am

“Nobody goes there anymore – it’s too crowded.”
— Yogi Berra

MCGA
Reply to  JimT
13 July 2021 10:14 am

You have no idea…I have pictures from my Mom and Dad from the summers of ’47 to ’49 at Coney and it was a mass of people, with not an inch between blankets. They bought out in Sag Harbor, a 2.5 hour drive each way, just to avoid that insanity. I’m thinking we wouldn’t want that. To continue with the Yogi theme: “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” Maybe its time for the Town to modify its approach.

JimT
Reply to  Bill Thompson
13 July 2021 4:36 am

Bill: as I have pointed out before several times: the beachies have to bring their own food because there is nothing else except one pokey little service window with a long lineup.

There is money to be made from this huge crowd of customers who would love to have “carnival eats” type food at the beach, but have to bring their own tired old sandwiches or starve.

Both the concession-holders and the town could benefit handsomely from providing for these customers. if they
only knew it.

Last edited 10 days ago by JimT
Ken Strauss
Reply to  JimT
13 July 2021 11:04 am

The town has proven incapable of profitably providing food at the CCC. Why do you think that the town would be more successful at the beach? If food were provided by a private vendor, how would his profits benefit Cobourg’s residents? In any case should we be promoting unhealthy “carnival eats”?

JimT
Reply to  Ken Strauss
13 July 2021 12:28 pm

deleted by author

Last edited 10 days ago by JimT
JimT
Reply to  Ken Strauss
13 July 2021 12:42 pm

Both the concession-holders
and the town could benefit…”

Restauranteurs/caterers lease space for kiosks to provide high-markup fun food to willing buyers. The Town collects fees, the providers make profits, and the crowds get fed the stuff they want.

God help us all if we had to depend on “the Town” to acquire and supply food for us to buy.

In any case, should bureaucrats and functionaries be deciding what is good or not for paying customers on a weekend spree?

Ken Strauss
Reply to  JimT
13 July 2021 12:54 pm

In any case, should bureaucrats and functionaries be deciding what is good or not for paying customers on a weekend spree?

Do you mean like banning water bottles and then wasting tax dollars to provide free filling stations?

Last edited 10 days ago by Ken Strauss
Bill Thompson
Reply to  JimT
15 July 2021 2:54 pm

Do you realistically think that people who come to the beach for a day (s) would prefer to queue up and pay at a canteen or facilities there,;that may not have all items to their liking instead of them bringing their own food ?
Do you recall just a few years years ago a young couple ran the small canteen down there and lasted one year.? It’s not worthwhile once the town costs are deducted plus the fact that visitors brought their own food (and alcohol)
It’s a result of the town advertising in Toronto (which council’s decision) to come one ,come all to the “undiscovered gem” of Lake Ontario.
It’s never been the same since..

Last edited 8 days ago by Bill Thompson
JimT
Reply to  Small town lover
13 July 2021 5:34 am

Except that Wellington Beach is surrounded by private property and cut off at one end by a canal. There is only one road in, therefore access is easily controlled.

We should haveit so good here in Cobourg.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Wellington+Beach/@43.949949,-77.3400566,405m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x89d648fb3cc3bfe9:0x1bd234d18f732e47!8m2!3d43.9498319!4d-77.3401596

Lemon Cake
Reply to  JimT
13 July 2021 8:04 am

Wellington Beach lineups on weekends stretch far along the Loyalist Parkway and are a nightmare. That town is tiny and has become overwhelmed by tourist traffic at all times of the week. Cobourg is in a far better position to handle beach traffic.

Sandpiper
12 July 2021 9:41 am

Lets look at this thing as expensive and unrealistic to start with
-why are we Impacting neighbours do they get a discount on their taxes for this ?

  • Improve amenities at what Costs show me the business expense recover plan 1st
  • -Stop Cannabis on the beach when we just opened about 7 stores down town why not sell it
  • -Enforcement officers off duty peak times here it comes Over Time $$ whats that really going to cost
  • -Emergency management There s another New Job or Billable hours to some one ??
  • Increase Beach parking without impacting Cheaper down town spaces Good luck the town sold the only parking lot they owned in the area There goes the rest of our GREEN Space
  • Shuttle Bus there’s a new job or 2 plus the cost of a bus and bus station ,Insurance, signs etc will this impact another neighbourhood ?? Of course it will
  • NOTHING but expense and job creation all at the Local residence expense
  • At the end of the day the idea of a fence and a TTC turnstile at each end will probably be the cheapest , easiest to manage and control and with a free annual pass given to the residents & their family with there Property Tax Bill once a yr . were happy and making money from visitors
  • Remember they used to give out a free garbage dump pass every yr .
Wally Keeler
Reply to  Sandpiper
12 July 2021 10:55 am

Stop Cannabis on the beach when we just opened about 7 stores down town why not sell it

Indeed why not sell cannabis cookies, gummies, infused fruit drinks and other oral consumables in a pot-up vender. Support our local businesses.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Sandpiper
12 July 2021 11:00 am

annual pass given to the residents & their family with there[sic] Property Tax Bill once a yr

What about residents who rent? And only family members resident in Cobourg; the grandkids in Baltimore do not get a free pass when visiting grandma.

JimT
Reply to  Sandpiper
12 July 2021 11:07 am

“…free annual pass given to the residents &
their family with there Property Tax Bill…”

Renters don’t get property tax bills. So, only property owners count? Renters are nobodies?

Ken Strauss
Reply to  JimT
12 July 2021 12:06 pm

Jim, the trivial solution would be to give the passes to landlords and they could pass them to their tenants.

JimT
Reply to  Ken Strauss
13 July 2021 4:45 am

Ken: yes, but that can only happen is somebody actually points out that provision needs to be made for renters – those who would otherwise lose out.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  JimT
14 July 2021 10:36 am

As soon as renters learn that their landlord has their free beach pass I doubt that further town effort would be needed.

Sandpiper
Reply to  Ken Strauss
14 July 2021 9:59 am

They do / did give out Garbage dump passes to the Landlords that were passed along to their tenants or to be used to the Tenants benefit I am sure some rocket scientist or Educated type at the Town Hall can figure that out .
Figure out the Problem and then develop a solution .
But the printing up of a few Beach passes will be far less than Cleaning up
and creating a lot of new Jobs and Pay cheques for this towns Employees .
This should Not be at our Residents get that Our Residents expense every time .

MCGA
Reply to  JimT
12 July 2021 12:50 pm

Sag Harbor would allow: tax slip, rental agreement, utility bill or driver’s license. You might have a problem if your an Airbnb s/t tenant.

JimT
Reply to  MCGA
13 July 2021 4:45 am

s/t ?? What’s that in actual words? Please don’t force your readers to decode things or “Google it”.

Take a few seconds to spell it out and save everyone the hassle.

Thank you.

Last edited 10 days ago by JimT
Just Wondering
Reply to  JimT
13 July 2021 7:43 am

Most people know that when you’re talking about Airbnb, you’re talking about short term renters or tenants.

JimT
Reply to  Just Wondering
13 July 2021 1:38 pm

“Most people” or more likely “all people” would prefer to see actual words in front of them to read instead of arcane codes.

Doesn’t take long. Take a second and spell it out.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Sandpiper
12 July 2021 11:24 am

“Improve amenities at what Costs show me the business expense recover plan 1st” Victoria Park/Beach is not a business enterprise; it is a community heritage and treasure. We pay taxes to make it a wonderful place to play, primarily for local residents. More washrooms, That would be helpful to many in our aging demographic so that they don’t have to line up, even on ordinary days when the beach is dominated with locals. Sandpiper does not want this until he sees the “business expense recovery plan.” Really? Pay to Poop? How does one recover expenses from a washroom? add change rooms Increasing numbers of Cobourg residents use the beach. They live in New Amhurst, or will live in the large suburban areas in Cobourg, and they will need change rooms for themselves and their family before getting into the car and driving back to the burbs. Those change rooms provide a needed service to Cobourg residents. More garbage bins. Of course. As Cobourg’s population increases beach use will increase. Garbage bins service Cobourg residents. Replacing the ugly rusted out graffiti laden bins will greatly improve the ambiance of the park system. How does one recover expenses from a trash bin? cigarette waste recycling receptacles in waterfront parking lots, Sounds like a good idea. Throughout the year it is mostly local residents who park their cars to view the parking lot. Some of them toss out their cigarette stubs onto the ground. How does one recover costs from that service to mostly local residents? Install water bottle filling stations. That would be a wonderful benefit to Cobourg residents who visit the park weekly to hear concerts and other smaller events. It enhances our life experience as residents, but Sandpiper wants to know the expense recovery plan for this before it is… Read more »

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Wally Keeler
12 July 2021 12:02 pm

Pay to Poop? How does one recover expenses from a washroom?

Most public washrooms in the UK and elsewhere are pay-to-use. To discourage extended stays, the door latches often have a timer and the door automatically opens when your paid usage has expired.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Ken Strauss
12 July 2021 4:09 pm

Really? The door automatically opens to view while the user is bearing down one last time. Or do they just unlock instead of open?

At the grand train station in Warsaw during the Cold War, a woman at the entrance to the washroom was selling toilet tissue by the square. You might like that policy. Being a wealthy westerner, I brought along two rolls of toilet paper with American money printed on them — from a Toronto joke shop. The dissidents enjoyed it.

Wally Keeler
12 July 2021 9:32 am

“Photo was taken on July 1st 2011 and is (or was) typical of a “normal” year.”

The photo is typical of a normal summer long weekend, not a year.
There are three long weekends when ‘The Hordes’ crowd the beach. Nine days out of 365.

Pay to Park is a better bumper sticker slogan.

Establishing Pay/Display devices on residential streets appears to be a good idea. Can these devices be mobile? Installed only during those three long weekends, or for three summer months? Yes to preferential parking fees/areas for locals.

A couple years ago I posted on my social media pages that it would be good to place the lifeguard station at the water’s edge. It’s not just being able to see what is going on in the water, it also puts them closer to a potential victim, where there is no need to to have to run with life saving equipment through a crowd, dodging children, umbrellas, plastic pails, etc.

Bill Thompson
Reply to  Wally Keeler
12 July 2021 10:21 am

“The photo is typical of a normal summer long weekend, not a year. There are three long weekends when ‘The Hordes’ crowd the beach. Nine days out of 365”
Really ?
That’s not what I’ve witnessed from my house the last years and ever increasing.
Covid-19 definitely has had an effect on it however (so far) because of closing etc. otherwise it would be the same overcrowding June through September.
.

Last edited 11 days ago by Bill Thompson
Wally Keeler
Reply to  Bill Thompson
12 July 2021 4:13 pm

I’ve witnessed the beach almost daily from when I was an infant and my parents lay me in the grass for a photoshot. I grew up in that park along with many many other baby boomers. That was the go-to place to meet up with peers. I used the beach for decades. I attend almost daily and I see a beach half full, 3/4 full, but only at capacity during those three long weekends and perhaps Ribfest. The Photo is typical of July 1 crowds but not typical of July 6 crowds.

Bill Thompson
Reply to  Wally Keeler
12 July 2021 6:00 pm

I guess you have but you were an infant a long time ago.
As I said before, living where I live,I see it /hear it from morning to night seven days a week.year round.
Not a contest… just stating my observations.

Wally Keeler
Reply to  Bill Thompson
13 July 2021 1:56 pm

So am I. And infancy was not the only way I enjoyed the park. I experienced it as a child. I experienced it as a teenager. I experienced it as a youth. When I moved to Toronto I still returned to Cobourg every two weeks for several decades. The Park and beach were always visited with friends. The entire experience over a lifetime has been one of enjoying the constant pleasure that Victoria Park/Beach provides. It’s only recently that the money grubbers and tax grouses slobber over fantasies of setting up an unwieldy infrastructure to charge access. The Town has made it abundantly clear that such a ludicrous scheme will not fly with them. They are right. And all the greedy little money mongers have no case to present to Cobourg Council. All they do is howl on this blog amongst each other, but none have the gonads to present an articulate informed case. And none of them appear to have any imagination whatsoever concerning ideas to extract revenue from all these ‘hordes’.

MCGA
Reply to  Wally Keeler
13 July 2021 2:07 pm

Just as you said last year they would not close the beach…Wrong Way Wally.

Mrs Bigley
12 July 2021 9:08 am

To close the beach on weekends and holidays seems harsh – Picture yourself living in an apartment on a hot busy street in the city – and possibly and a new resident to our country – the joy of coming to the sand and water and the clean air even for a day will be such a joy for children from away – we are our brother’s keeper after all

Lemon Cake
Reply to  Mrs Bigley
12 July 2021 1:40 pm

Agree with this! I’ve seen multi-generation families set up for a day at the beach, grandparents, kids, a picnic. This is exactly the beach use we should encourage not turn away. As for the popular suggestion above that we sell pot at the beach.. I can’t even. I would much rather have families congregating in large numbers as opposed to people partying and getting wasted on our beach.

Wally Keeler
12 July 2021 8:44 am

“Beach access fees are inadvisable due to the cost of infrastructure/fencing, staff time for enforcement, and the imposition of barriers to walkers along the waterfront.”

I’ve been saying this every time a loudmouth deadhead proposes the bumper-sticker mentality of ‘Pay for Play‘. Shallow thinking whenever anyone proposed this idiot notion. The revealing part is the hypocrisy of those calling for pay for play beach access do not ever make their proposal directly to Town Council. Why? Because they know that their beloved notion will never fly. Anybody with common sense, indeed, anyone with uncommon sense, can see that glaring fact.

MCGA
11 July 2021 1:23 pm

One thing you might consider is actually talking to the lifeguards. Take a close look at that picture above. Imagine trying to protect swimmers while looking through that mass of people from a platform maybe 5 ft. above the sand and yards back from the water’s edge. Imagine trying to get a clear view of small kids, standing neck deep, through a maze of umbrellas, sunshades and tents. Now imagine you are teenager responsible for their safety…what changes would you like to see? (asked by an Atlantic ocean guard circa 1968-69)

Kathleen
Reply to  MCGA
11 July 2021 5:05 pm

So many beaches have no lifeguards. What is the criteria?

MCGA
Reply to  Kathleen
12 July 2021 6:19 am

It is usually a risk decision on the part of the Town. Where I guarded, on the south shore of L.I., most of the beaches had guards. There were a couple deemed so dangerous that the Town posted large danger and swim at your own risk signs. We would lose two or three people a season who mistakenly thought they could handle the surf and undertow. Of course those beaches were where the off duty guards went to play…nothing like being young, male ( no women guards back then) and more than a little nuts/stupid.

JimT
Reply to  MCGA
12 July 2021 11:14 am

,,,south shore of L.I.” ??

Where is that? How are we supposed to decode “L.I.” and why should we have to?

MCGA
Reply to  JimT
12 July 2021 3:01 pm

Might try google.

MCGA
Reply to  John Draper
12 July 2021 6:37 pm

Try “south shore of L.I.” and see how that goes.
Not trying to be subtle, L.I. stands for Long Island, and while there are many long islands found around the world most in this area probably recognize it, beyond that whole Ice Tea thing which didn’t actually develop there. I think Wally wrote a limerick about it.

Kevin
Reply to  MCGA
12 July 2021 7:11 pm

Long Island, New York?

MCGA
Reply to  Kevin
12 July 2021 10:08 pm

Yes, Bridgehampton Town Beach…pre the richest and most famous.

JimT
Reply to  MCGA
13 July 2021 4:56 am

Better that each person reading what you write should have to do research on their own to figure out what you are talking about than that you should actually spell it out once for them so that they don’t each have to “Google it”?

Makes wonderful sense, doesn’t it?

Last edited 10 days ago by JimT
Sandpiper
Reply to  Kathleen
12 July 2021 9:17 am

Because we advertise to Attract people to come here its a Commercial venture
they are not required at a Natural beach
The more you create the more you must provide