Simcoe County Rovers announce co-owner Cyle Larin

The are delighted to announce Canadian international star Cyle Larin has joined the club as a co-owner. Larin, a prolific attacking player for the Canadian national soccer team and Beşiktaş (Turkish Super League), has acquired a minority stake in Rovers Sports and Entertainment Group. Larin joins fellow Canadian soccer icon Julian de Guzman as co-owners in the Rovers group, along with several other individuals. De Guzman is Canada’s most capped senior men’s player and the first Canadian to play in Spain’s La Liga. De Guzman adds, “We are hyper-focused on attracting a number of high preforming individuals to the club to promote our female and male programs. Cyle is playing at the highest level internationally with Canada and at club level with Beşiktaş. He is known through the international soccer world and will bring tremendous amounts of knowledge and experiences to our players, and a vast network for our club. Bringing in Cyle is a massive coup for Simcoe County, the Rovers, and Ontario’s youth soccer community.” The Club will launch senior high-performance male and female programs in 2022.

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Some kids had a tough adjustment to camp. What that can teach us as Ontario’s school year is set to begin

Drop-off time at camp can be tough for kids and their parents. Some children are wary of saying goodbye, anxious about the next few weeks in the wilderness. Some parents get emotional about leaving their children alone for the first time. But in the 2021 season, camp counsellors and supervisors say drop-off — among many other hallmarks of camp — has been the hardest it’s ever been. “Usually, you only have problems at drop-off with the younger kids,” said Katie Larkin, a staff supervisor at Earthbound Kids day camp north of Pickering. “But even older kids this year have had a bit of a harder time on Monday.” Ontario kids have spent due to COVID-19 restrictions, the most in the country. As they emerged from their homes, supervisors noted some have struggled to reintegrate, with homesickness and the inability to follow routines enduring longer than usual. Younger kids, around age five or six, are also struggling to form friendships, as the bulk of their schooling experience was defined by the pandemic. The good news, camp supervisors and parents say, is that most children’s struggle to adjust quickly vanished once they became comfortable in their new environments, and camp — whether overnight or day-camp — has boosted their mental health and helped prepare for in-person learning in September. But the camp experience, experts say, could indicate challenges teachers and school staff will face in the fall, as they try to m […]

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World’s largest rubber duck returns to Toronto — sort of

The world’s largest inflatable rubber duck is set to return — virtually — to Toronto’s waterfront this autumn. “Mama Duck” is slated to be one of five augmented reality stops that are part of the festival, scheduled to run from Sept.17 to Oct. 3. The giant rubber ducky usually visits Toronto in the summer along Lake Ontario, but due to the pandemic, the festival this year is going to be a physically distanced waterfront trail, with augmented reality stops in keeping with the government’s COVID-19 regulations and guidelines. A QR code will be provided to attendees, which they can scan using their smartphones and manipulate the size of the duck. They can also view the duck on land near Rees WaveDeck using their phones. The real-life, six-storey-tall duck weighs approximately 13,600 kg, and organizers say it’s the most popular event on the festival’s 10 years. “The digital duck is a part of four other unique AR stops which will aim to show the past, present and future of Toronto waterfront,” said Logan Kazimer, spokesperson for the festival. Other augmented reality stops include swimming with whales, walking on water and seeing into the future. Correction – Aug. 19, 2021: This article was edited to remove a reference that this year’s waterfront festival will feature tall ships, music, food, nautical programs and entertainment. Those activities will not be happening. Ashima Agnihotri is a reporter for t […]

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Ontario revises gathering guidelines, moves three regions into more restrictive framework level

Three regions of the province will move into more restrictive levels of the COVID-19 framework next week, the Ontario government has announced. The province will also introduce new capacity guidelines for certain types of gatherings.  At 12:01 a.m. on March 15, Lambton Public Health will move from the red-control zone to the grey-lockdown zone, Northwestern Health Unit will move from the yellow-protect zone to the red-control zone and Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit will move from the green-prevent zone to the yellow-protect zone.  These changes follow the activation of an “emergency brake” in the Public Health Sudbury and Districts region that moved the area into the grey zone on Friday. “The latest modelling suggests we are at a critical stage in our fight against this devastating virus, and that the actions we take now will help ensure people stay safe,” said Christine Elliott, deputy premier and minister of health in an emailed statement. “As we near completion of Phase 1 and prepare to rollout Phase 2 of our vaccine distribution plan next month, we urge everyone to continue following all public health measures and advice to help prevent further transmission and protect our health system capacity.” New capacity levels for weddings, funerals and religious services, rites or ceremonies in grey-lockdown zones will also take effect on March 15. Under the new guidelines, these gatherings will be limi […]

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Today’s coronavirus news: Ontario reports 378 COVID-19 cases, most since mid-June; U.S. seven-day average surpasses 100,000

The latest coronavirus news from Canada and around the world Saturday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories if available. 3:16 p.m.: As her father lay dying last August from the coronavirus at a Georgia hospital, Lindsay Schwarz put her hands on his arms and softly sang him lines from their favourite songs. Eugene Schwarz had been admitted three weeks earlier, but the hospital had not allowed his daughter to visit him for fear of spreading the virus. The 72-year-old looked nothing like the ebullient, crisply dressed cardiologist who used to kiss her on the forehead before heading off to work. “I was hugging my father, and it didn’t really feel like my father,” Schwarz said. Less than an hour after she was allowed to see him, he died. Schwarz recalled the painful experience in a phone interview on Friday to raise awareness about the devastating impacts of COVID-19. She and other victims of the virus, including people who were infected months ago and are still experiencing severe symptoms, organized rallies in Atlanta, New York, Washington, Denver and more than a dozen other cities around the country on Saturday to encourage people to get vaccinated and wear a mask. 2:20 p.m.: Thousands of people marched in Paris and other French cities Saturday for a fourth consecutive week of protests against the COVID-19 health passes that everyone in the country will need shortly to enter cafes, trains and other venues. The demonstratio […]

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BEHIND THE CRIMES: Can you identify the Nation River Lady?

It was nearly 50 years ago that a woman was discovered floating face down in the Nation River near Casselman, Ont., east of Ottawa. She has still not been identified. “The investigation into the Nation River Lady case continues,” said Bill Dickson, OPP media spokesperson, in a phone interview on March 2. “The OPP is committed to giving this woman her real name back and holding her killer or killers accountable for their actions. Our investigators continue to appeal for anyone who has any information, no matter how insignificant it may seem, to call the OPP.” It was May 3, 1975 when a farmer discovered her body a short drive from the Highway 417 bridge south of the small community, located about 54 kilometres east of Ottawa. The International Centre for Unidentified and Missing Persons stated she died by strangulation. Ontario Provincial Police dubbed her the seeking more information as to her identity. Police say it’s a homicide investigation. Police believe the woman’s body was thrown from the bridge of the westbound lane of Highway 417 over the Nation River. Blood evidence on the bridge indicated that the woman was killed one to four weeks prior to her discovery, but after re-examining evidence some 30 years later, it was noted that the woman could have been killed as early as the fall of 1974, to just a few weeks before her body was found. Although it has not been determined when the body entered the Nation River, it is most likely one t […]

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Today’s coronavirus news: Masks may be mandatory at the polling booth on Sept. 20; Ontario reporting 485 new cases of COVID-19 and 3 deaths

The latest from Canada and around the world Wednesday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories if available. 8:20 p.m.: British Columbia has reported 553 new cases of COVID-19 as the upward trend continues across the province, particularly in the Interior Health region. The number of active infections is up to 5,580, including 3,203 in that region, where about 41 per cent of the latest cases are located. The Health Ministry says 107 people are hospitalized, including 53 in intensive care. One more person has died, pushing B.C.’s death toll to 1,782. There has been one new outbreak at an assisted-living facility, for a total of 11 active outbreaks in assisted-living or long-term-care homes. Nearly 83 per cent of eligible B.C. residents have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, while 73.8 per cent are fully vaccinated. 6:10 p.m.: Alberta has recorded its highest single-day increase in COVID-19 cases in almost three months with 678 new infections. Daily cases haven’t reached levels that high since mid-May when the province was battling a third wave of the pandemic. Updated numbers show active cases total 5,933 after growing steadily over the last few weeks. Hospitalizations and intensive care admissions are also increasing with 184 and 48, respectively. COVID-19 admissions have not been that high since late June. Alberta Health data indicates the majority of individuals facing severe outcomes related to the virus are unvac […]

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With COVID-19 infections rising, Toronto won’t close North York vaccination clinic after all

With COVID-19 , the city has rethought plans to completely close a North York vaccination clinic. In a news release, the city said that, “given new information and the current vaccination situation” in the city, Toronto Public Health won’t entirely close the clinic at Mitchell Field community centre as announced July 28. Instead, it will “continue to run a smaller fixed-site clinic” administering COVID-19 vaccine and other vaccines provided by TPH. The clinic will serve as a key site for both COVID-19 vaccination and other vaccination programs operated by TPH. As of Aug. 23, the clinic will accept walk-in appointments for COVID-19 vaccinations Tuesday to Saturday from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. — the same hours as other city-run immunization clinics that are remaining open. They include Cloverdale Mall, the Hangar at Downsview Park, Metro Toronto Convention Centre downtown, and Scarborough Town Centre. The city still plans to and focus their resources on neighbourhood-based pop-up and mobile clinics. “Extending the operation of the Mitchell Field CC clinic will ensure that communities in North York have continued access to COVID-19 vaccines,” according to the news release. On July 21, Toronto public health chief Dr. Eileen de Villa said the high local vaccination rate — currently 73 per cent of Torontonians aged 12 or over are fully vaccinated — keeping infections and hospitalizations low while removing pandemic restrictions. […]

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