Minto extends closures until May 31, cancels town events until July 1

MINTO – The Town of Minto has extended the closure of public buildings to May 31 and cancelled all town-run events until July 1.

Both moves were announced on April 16 as part of the town’s ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The Town of Minto continues to keep public safety as top priority during the unique circumstances surrounding COVID-19,” officials stated in a press release announcing the extension of closures.

The municipal office, as well as, recreation and culture facilities will remain closed to the public until May 31. This consists of all arenas, curling clubs, community halls, museums, theatres, playgrounds, public recreation spaces, Launch It Minto and any other town-run facilities.

All public and committee meetings are also cancelled until May 31, when the situation will be reassessed by Minto officials.

The town had previously set April 30 as the date for reassessment of closures and restrictions. However, on April 14, at a special session of the legislature, the province passed legislation extending emergency measures until May 12.

Weekly online update

The cancellation of town-run events until the end of June was announced during the town’s weekly Facebook update.

It means annual events like the Clifford Street Celebration, Pride in the Park and the inaugural “Raleway Festival” planned for June will not take place.

CAO Derrick Thomson also noted in the town’s weekly online update that Minto has measures in place to help residents facing anxiety.

“It’s okay for people to feel anxious about what’s going on,” he said, encouraging residents to visit if they need help.

“There’s lots of great tips to help to manage through this unique situation,” said Thomson, adding the town also provides “Wellness Wednesday” tips on the municipality’s Facebook page.

Thompson encouraged residents to adhere to physical distancing guidelines as the pandemic continues.

“There’s lot of opportunity for virtual connections … it’s important to connect with our loved ones or our friends,” he stated.

However, he noted the town has been receiving complaints about some people not practicing physical distancing and encouraged residents to direct such complaints to the OPP non-emergency number: 1-800-310-1122.

Mayor George Bridge reminded residents about the recently-launched Think Minto First campaign to boost Minto businesses while helping local charities and non-profit organizations. 

The program allows community groups to sell gift certificates to participating Minto businesses while raising funds for local not-for-profit organizations.

“I think it’s really important that we support our local businesses at this time by buying gift cards to spend later at our local businesses,” Bridge stated.

Bridge also pointed out that rather than holding the annual Community Achievement Awards program this year, the Minto Chamber of Commerce is running a contest to highlight local businesses doing great things in the community. Details can be found on the Town of Minto Facebook page.

“I can’t say enough about our businesses and our people in Minto and how they get together and how they’re working very hard to get through this problem we’re facing at the moment,” said Bridge.

Thompson reminded residents that although park facilities are closed (currently until May 31), residents are able to walk through trails and parks provided they observe physical distancing requirements.

“We’re getting through this together because we’re Minto strong and we’ll absolutely get through this and all the social distancing and things that were doing are paying off for not only for our families, our loved ones, but everybody else’s loved ones too,” he stated.

Anyone with questions or concerns regarding COVID-19 can contact Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health at 1-800-265-7293 or visit its website.

Minto officials say the latest town information can be found on the town website, on its social media pages or by calling 519-338-2511.