As we head into the Victoria Day Long Weekend it is difficult to have a grasp on what might be affected by the holiday and what might be because of the COVID-19 response; to try to assist with that here’s some information you might need going into the weekend.
Starting with some updates from the City of Brantford:
City of Brantford Parks and Trails
City of Brantford parks and City Trails remain open, however City Outdoor Amenities, including playgrounds, remain closed at this time. The Rotary Bike Park and Skateparks within the City of Brantford also remain closed to the public until further notice.
Provincial and GRCA Parks and Trails
On Saturday, May 9, the Ontario government announced that provincial parks would open for limited day use beginning this week. The province’s announcement applies to parks owned and operated exclusively by the province. It does not apply to GRCA parks, trails and natural areas, which are different from both provincial and federal parks. At this time, all properties owned and managed by the GRCA remain closed to the public. Please visit the GRCA COVID-19 Updates webpage for the most recent updates and announcements.
City Council has approved a modified horticulture program this summer including major floral display locations throughout the City. Prominent displays will continue to be featured at the following locations:
- Lorne Park
- Glenhyrst Gardens
- Jubilee Terrace
- Tom Thumb Park
- Gore Park
- War Memorial
- City Hall
- Harmony Square
- Victoria Park
- City Entrance signs
Residents are urged to continue to follow physical distancing regulations (being 6 ft apart from others at all times in public) while enjoying the City’s outdoor parks.
Fireworks are permissible on private property during the upcoming Victoria Day long weekend – Friday May 15th – Monday May 18th, 2020 only – while adhering to the following stipulations:
- Must be conducted on private property
- Limit backyard gathering to 5 people or less as per provincially issued Emergency Order to prohibit organized public events and social gatherings of more than five people. These prohibitions apply to all events or gatherings, even if held at a private dwelling.
- Practice social distancing of remaining 2 metres (6 ft) from others at all times
- All appropriate safety precautions are followed
Consistent with the Province of Ontario Essential Workplace Order still in place, Yard Sales do not meet the criteria of an essential business or interaction, and therefore are NOT permissible in The City of Brantford or The County of Brant at this time.
Based on direction provided by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry Services (MNFFS), fishing is permissible in Ontario on water bodies where access is open to the public for the purpose of fishing. Practicing physical distancing (remaining 6 ft apart from others) at all times must be adhered to, as well as all MNFFS regulations relative to licencing/fishing activity. Gathering in groups while fishing is not permissible at this time. Given that the Grand River Conservation Authority (GRCA) lands and reservoirs remain closed, access to local waterways from GRCA lands will be blocked. The public is also reminded that all public park amenities such as benches remain closed until further notice.
Reminder to Bicycle, Motorcycle, and Classic Car Enthusiasts
As the weather becomes warmer, many in our community may choose to travel on motorcycles, bicycles or in classic cars. Please remember that although road travel is permissible, stopping and congregating in a group with more than five people is not. Furthermore, individual physical distancing of remaining 2 metres (6 ft) apart from others at all times in public remains mandatory at this time.
Other Important Reminders
- Please continue to stay home if you are not an essential service provider
- Self-isolation of 14 days is MANDATORY if returning from travel abroad (meaning you cannot be in public for 14 days)
- Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds
- Keep a safe physical distance of at least 6 feet or 2 metres from those around you in public at all times
- Avoid touching your face
- Do not hug or shake hands with others
- Do not gather in groups of more than 5 people that you do not live with in your primary residence
This information can be found in full at brantford.ca
In addition to this it’s important to note that the Beer Store and LCBO will be closing most locations; as will many Grocery stores such as Zehrs, Sobeys, and FreshCo.
Other stores may have locations open, but be operating on reduced hours; such as Metro.
Many other locations which would ordinarily be closed on the holiday are already closed due to COVID-19. And while Postal service will be paused for the day; it appears waste collection will proceed as normal for the week.
But as with any holiday long weekend; the best advice is always to call ahead before you make the journey to ensure you don’t make a wasted trip.