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NATION FLAG DAY & HERITAGE DAY

The Federal Government has proclaimed Feb.15th as National Flag of Canada Day. In 1965, fifty-one years ago, the old Red Ensign Flag with the British Union Jack was replaced with the Red Maple Leaf. To know more about our country flag’s history and some other related trivia go to:

www.pch.gc.ca/special/jdn-nfd/index-eng.cfm.

Be sure to wave our Provincial and Municipal Flags too! Heritage Day is the third Monday in February each year and is set aside for communities to celebrate local, provincial and national heritage. This year’s date is February15th. So enjoy the day!

Rev. W.P. OLIVER WALL OF HONOUR

Each year the Black Cultural Society of Nova Scotia hosts the annual Rev. Dr. William P. Oliver Wall of Honour Night at the Black Cultural Centre in memory of the works of Rev. Dr. Oliver. He exemplified what it means to be a “community leader.” Members of the Society are invited to send nominations to the Selection Committee for consideration of this distinguished annual award. The Night of Honour is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, March 5th, 2016 at 6:30 PM in the Centre at Cherry Brook. More information can be found at www.bccns.com or call 902-434-6223.

ICE THICKNESS SAFETY REPORTS

HRM has an ice thickness testing program during the winter season, but there may still be noticeable thin ice and open water in many lakes across the region. Throughout the winter months ice thickness reports for lakes tested by the municipality will be available to the public at any time by calling 902-490-3577. Reports are updated weekly at this web-site pending weather conditions: https://apps.halifax.ca/icethickness.

More than 100 lakes, mostly in the urban core, are tested regularly by HRM Parks and Recreation staff. There are 11 tested sites in or near our district area. They are:

  • Lake Loon
  • Lake Major
  • Long Lake in North Preston
  • Nelson Lake
  • & Frog Lake in East Preston
  • Lake Echo
  • Lewis Lake by Bumpy Lane
  • McCoys Pond by Church Lake Drive in Lake Echo
  • Lawrencetown Lake in Mineville
  • Porters Lake and
  • Middle Porters Lake

The municipality reminds all citizens to ensure ice conditions are safe and to exercise extreme caution when walking, skating or participating in other outdoor events on frozen lakes this winter season.

OPEN GYM FOR YOUTH & FAMILY

Particular school gymnasiums will be open for school-aged children, youth and parents to come build an obstacle course, dance, shoot some hoops and participate in other fun activities. HRM Parks & Recreation staff will be onsite at each school to welcome and assist participants, but unlike other municipal programs, these sessions are FREE and will be unstructured with no lesson plans or organized activities. The closest local Schools that are participating in this Open Gym initiative are at:

  • Duncan MacMillan High School in Sheet Harbour on Friday evenings from now until May 7th between 6-9PM
  • Humber Park Elementary School in Lake Loon/Westphal on Saturdays until May 7th from 1:30 – 4 PM

32nd NS AFRICAN HERITAGE MONTH

February 2016 will mark the 32nd year Nova Scotians have celebrated African Heritage Month. The Office of African Nova Scotian Affairs (ANSA) provides event listings as a service. Check out the ANSA website for its calendar of special events and functions at: http://ansa.novascotia.ca/events-calendar. Events are subject to change. To update any program date or event details, contact ansa_newsletter@gov.ns.ca or fax 902-424-7189.

NS MASS CHOIR SEEKS MEMBERS

Singing for racial harmony and peace has been the driving force behind this multi-cultural community choir since 1992. They are always looking for new members, specifi-
cally from the gospel scene. And they do have an audition process. If you are interested in becoming a member of NS Mass Choir, then please contact them at 902-499-1500 or http://www.nsmasschoir.com or by Twitter @NSMassChoir. Also LIKE them on Facebook too !

HRM COMMUNITY GRANT PROGRAM

HRM is now accepting applications for the 2016-2017 Community Grants Program. The deadline for applying is March 31st, 2016. Application forms and program guidebooks are available on-line, by calling 311, at one of HRM’s Citizen Contact Centres, or at my district office. The HRM Community Grants Program is a centralized program that provides annual cash grants to registered non-profit organizations and charities located throughout HRM. There are two types of grants:

(1) a project grant of up to $5,000 and

(2) a capital grant of up to $25,000.

Grants are one-time and project-specific within the following funding sectors:

  • Environment; Recreation & Leisure;
  • Affordable & Supportive Housing;
  • Emergency Assistance;
  • Neighborhood Safety;
  • Community History;
  • Community Diversity; and
  • Arts & Crafts

Visit: www.halifax.ca/boardscom/bccgrants/CommunityGrantsProgram.php.

RECREATION NS LUCKY DUCK DRAW

Lucky Duck Lottery is a program by Recreation NS that is designed to help non-profit clubs, groups and organizations raise funds. Who can sell Lucky Duck Tickets? Community organizations such as school clubs, sport teams, theatre groups, choirs, garden clubs, senior clubs. Any non-profit group can sell! Recreation NS supplies the tickets, prizes, seller kits, and administers the program. All you need to do is sell the tickets! Tickets are $1.00 with 70 cents of every $1.00 sold going to the group. There is no cost to the group whatsoever! Selling period for 2016 is November 1st, 2015 to March 4th, 2016. PRIZES: 1st prize-$3,000 cash; 2nd prize-$500 cash; 3rd prize-weekend getaway; Plus 7 prizes of $100. For more information go to: www.recreationns.ns.ca/2016-lucky-duck-lottery/.

GET MY NEWSLETTER & UPDATES

Be sure to sign up and get my newsletters, periodical updates and advisories via various social media links on my web-sites, Twitter and Facebook pages and please email me your new e-mail addresses. Keep in touch!

GET HELP WITH HOME WARMING

We all deserve to be comfortable in our homes, regardless of income. But too many Nova Scotians struggle to keep warm and pay the bills. HomeWarming is offered by Effi-
ciency Nova Scotia and Clean Foundation as part of a broad, province-wide initiative to provide a no-charge energy assessment and home efficiency upgrades to income-qual-
ified homeowners. If they discover that upgrades like draft-proofing and insulation will help reduce your heating and power bills, they will install the upgrades at absolutely no cost to you. For more details you can speak confidentially with a Service Advisor about your eligibility by calling Efficiency Nova Scotia at 1-877-434-2136 or by filling in the on-line form at: http://homewarming.ca/.

GET A HOME ENERGY ASSESSMENT

Efficiency NS (ENS) provides a Home Energy Assessment that gives you a complete analysis of your home’s energy efficiency – from the attic to the basement. For $99 one of their Certified Energy Advisors will conduct a full evaluation of your home and provide you with customized recommendations to help you save energy and money.

Complete any of the suggested upgrades, such as insulation, draft-proofing, windows or doors, within 12 months and ENS will help you cover the cost. Choose from either low interest financing up to $25,000, or up to $5,000 in rebates. Please note, rebates and financing are for homes that are electrically heated. Pre-approval is required. To learn more about available rebates, please view their Home Energy Assessment Rebate Guide Book at this link: www.efficiencyns.ca/tmpimages/HEA%20Rebate%20Guide.pdf . For more details please visit ENS Home Energy Assessment page: www.efficiencyns.ca/energy-solutions/home-energy-assessment/ or call 1-800-665-5377.

NS HEATING ASSISTANCE PROGRAM

The Provincial Heating Assistance Rebate Program (HARP) provides help to lower-income Nova Scotians with the cost of home heating. You qualify for this program if you pay a heating bill for fuel, oil, propane, or electricity at your current residence and meet ONE of the following criteria:

• live alone with an income of $27,000 or less;

• live with others and have a combined household income of $42,000 or less;

• receive Income Assistance from the Department of Community Services, OR;

• receive the Guaranteed Income Supplement from Service Canada.

Please find the HARP 2015-16 application form at:
www.novascotia.ca/sns/pdf/ans-individuals-harp-application-2015.pdf. You must apply by March 31st to receive a rebate.