June 24, 2022
Fireworks are a tradition that have become synonymous with such events as New Year’s Eve, National birthdays, special long weekends like Victoria Day Weekend and Labour Day, football halftime shows, concerts and festivals. Their loud bangs and colourful displays are exciting and draw huge crowds.

We all know that fireworks are dangerous. But that’s okay; accidents can be prevented by making sure we are careful to follow sensible safety rules. How many of us, though, are aware of the insidious danger to our health and environment? Are there any sensible safety rules about that?

The problem begins with the many chemicals that produce those spectacular displays of colour. Perchlorate salts (lithium, sodium, copper and barium) as well as calcium and strontium create the colours we see, when they are heated to the correct temperature.(i)

When fireworks are exploded the perchlorate salts fall to the ground and are washed into lakes and rivers where they dissolve easily. They remain in the water and in the soil for a very long time where they are absorbed by plants that wildlife eats and eventually end up in our food, too. Perchlorate salts can cause hypothyroidism which, in turn, affects many of our internal organs.(ii)

Unfortunately, it doesn’t end there. The perchlorate salts in those fireworks do not burn up and many end up as poisonous aerosols in the air. When inhaled they can cause many health problems including vomiting, diarrhea, kidney disease, asthma attacks, cardiovascular issues, and various cancers. A burst of ozone from fireworks can create a gas that seriously irritates the lungs.(iii)

Can one fireworks display be a serious problem? Well, yes. Within an hour of a fireworks show there is a significant increase of heavy metals in the air. Included in this mix are also fine particulates, nitric acid, and sulphur dioxide.(iv)

The bangs and whistles of a fireworks show are also serious problems. They can cause hearing loss (v) and can contribute to fatal injuries to wildlife, birds (vi) and pets.(vii)

With so much bad news about fireworks perhaps we should be rethinking the use of them. It does seem that we have lost the focus of that special day/event and our thoughts and attention have turned to the nighttime spectacle.

There are other ways to celebrate that are more meaningful and relevant to the occasion. Covid-19 aside, one can host or attend a party with a Canadian theme, hike a Canadian trail or visit a Canadian historical site for Canada Day; run a food drive in your neighbourhood or help out at a food bank for Thanksgiving; attend a parade for the New Year; wear an appropriate costume to a festival; or perhaps hold a chilly swim fest for the Victoria Day weekend. What you can do is limited only by your imagination and could quickly become a new, meaningful tradition for you and your family.

Township of Lake of Bays

consumer fireworks are permitted as follows:

July 1 and Statutory Holiday Weekends
from dusk to 11 p.m.

Town of Huntsville

consumer fireworks are permitted as follows:

Any weekend between
6 and 11 p.m. on Friday, Saturday and Sunday
New Year's Eve between
6 p.m. and 1 a.m. the following day
Victoria, Canada & Labour Day between
8 and 11 p.m.
FIREWORKS ARE PROHIBITED at all other times and during a Fire Ban (Extreme Fire Rating)
Effective Tuesday June 23, the Fire rating for the District of Muskoka is HIGH.

Extreme caution must be taken with all open flames. Small fires are permitted in most rural areas of Muskoka keeping in mind that NO DAYTIME BURNING is allowed. You must have adequate tools and water to extinguish the fire if the need arises and you must be with your fire at all times.

Consult with your local By-Law Department for outdoor burning regulations in your municipality.

The District of Muskoka is looking for your input around public access to our community trails and more

The District Municipality of Muskoka is conducting a survey as part of the Making Waves: Integrated Watershed Management Initiative. The purpose of this survey is to gain information from the Muskoka River Watershed community about public access.

For this survey, public access is defined as any route (such as a road, trail, easement, or other feature) that provides access to public lands (such as shorelines, lakes, forests, or other natural features). Some examples of public access include:
  • A foot-trail that is accessible off a road that leads into a forest;
  • A municipal-owned dock, beach, park; 
  • Crown land.

They are seeking opinions from users of trails, boat launches, parks, beaches, public docks, etc. as well as information on the uses and activities pursued in the watershed. To have your opinion heard please take the survey before June 30.
The Annual General Meeting of the Lake of Bays Association will be held on
Saturday July 9, 2022 at 9:30 a.m. in the Dwight Community Centre.
Coffee and snacks will be served starting at 9:00 a.m.

The meeting is open to all - members and non-members welcome!

Following the business portion of the meeting, award-winning, internationally published photographer, Rob Stimpson will present a collection of his photographs: Lake of Bays Through the Seasons.
Reading, Interesting Links and Events

Plastic Free July is just around the corner

Township of Lake of Bays

Baysville Curling & Bocce Club DIY Surf & Turf is Back

ON Nature Magazine
photo by Ahne Crawford-Ridley
The purpose of the Lake of Bays Association is to promote, sustain and enhance a clean and healthy natural environment, a well-serviced community and a safe and peaceful Lake of Bays.

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