Sunday, February 8, 2015

Snowmen Instead of Sandcastles at Snowman Mania

From Feb.13 to 16, the 10th Annual Snowman Mania will have Wasaga Beach alive with laughter during the Family Day weekend. The Stonebridge Town Centre will host many events.

The official opening ceremonies, parade, roving entertainment, horse drawn carriage rides and more will be held outside the Canadian Tire and the Real Canadian Superstore on Friday Feb.13. The Wasaga Beach Youth Centre will provide snacks for a small fee.

Look out for Saga Sam, the Snowman Mania mascot, and the two Princesses, Anna and Elsa from Frozen appearing at events.
The $2 Snowman Mania gives you access to all Snowman Mania events and Wasaga Transit all weekend. Last year approximately 2,000 buttons were sold. Some events may have fees.

This year the Town expects to see more visitors. “We expect to see an increase this year due to the additional / premium events we have planned,” says Paula Lehr, Snowman Mania, special events coordinator, Town of Wasaga Beach.

New this year is the Youth Ambassador program for teens aged 13 to 17, plus President’s Choice™ Super Dogs at Oakwood Woods on Feb. 14 at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. There will be a “pat n chat” with the dogs.

Since 2005, the Town has been hosting Snowman Mania: It’s a great community event, it involves many of our non-profit organizations allowing for fundraising opportunities, it promotes economic development and tourism in Wasaga Beach in the winter months,” Lehr adds.
Some Stonebridge By the Bay residents entered the Snowman Mania Chili Cook-off in in 2014: The Bean team placed first in the North of Mexico Category.
The Chili Cook-Off is a great way to add some heat to this winter festival. To register, contact Doug McCullough, Chili Cook-Off chair, Doug McCullough at 705-429-7075 or dougmccullough13(at)

The fourth annual 4-on4 Ball Hockey Tournament will be held at the Stonebridge Town Centre Feb. 14 and 15 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunday Night Street Party at Stonebridge Town Centre
On Feb. 15 from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. the Stonebridge Town Centre will come alive with an array of family-friendly activities: Wild Wing Wasaga Beach in the Stonebridge Town Centre will host a wing-eating contest at 6:30 p.m. At 7:30 p.m. See Live…The Stars of Pop Tribute stars Taylor Swift, Rhianna and Selena Gomez on the concert stage: Dance by Design will perform during the intermission.

Beavertails and Euro-Lex Bistro & Deli will provide concessions for a small fee. Fireworks at 9:00 p.m. will light up the winter sky. Wild Wing will have karaoke after the fireworks. Transit service will be extended until 10 p.m. on Feb. 15.

Public skating, activities for children at Wasaga Beach Public Library, snowshoe demos and winter hikes, a cake decorating contest, a pancake breakfast, cross country skiing (at a discounted rate), a toboggan run, “Art Attack”, the Rotary Club of Wasaga Beach & Area Polar Bear Plunge, Rock Solid Wrestling are some of the events revellers can enjoy at Snowman Mania.

Many venues throughout Wasaga Beach are hosting Snowman Mania events all Family Day Weekend: the library, the YMCA, The RecPlex. For a full list of events, dates, times and fees, visit

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Mary Ann Watts of Wild Wing Wasaga Beach Wins Platinum

There’s plenty of talent at the Stonebridge Town Centre in Wasaga Beach: Mary Ann Watts of Wild Wing won the Platinum Award in the Regional Music Video Category at the Fourth Annual Wasaga Beach Short Film Festival.

Mary Ann Watts
Photo by Enrique Miranda
Watts directed “Burn” by local band TooNice. This is the second win for Watts. To see the award-winning video, visit

“The TooNice Band were really fun to work with and would do anything I would ask— from shooting on top of a store roof, on a pontoon boat and being submerged in the lake. Their response was always ‘No problem’,” Watts says.

Winners in several categories were announced at the WBSFF4 Red Carpet Gala Awards on Jan. 24 at the RecPlex—220 people attended.

Last year Watts won the Platinum Award for Southern Georgian Bay Music Video at the Third Annual Wasaga Beach Short Film Festival for “There is a Light" by singer-songwriter Rebecca Stephens. For Watts, directing music videos is an extension of her passion for photography: she is a wedding photographer— Mary Ann Watts Photography.

“I’ve always secretly wanted to be a ‘rock star’ but I can’t sing or play an instrument—even after all the 'private lessons,' Watts says. “I truly have an admiration of the drive, creativity and challenges that many musicians have endured. Through my photography and film production, I feel I have an understanding and connection to their music. I am so grateful that I have been given the gift of photography that I can share and express through music," she adds.

Watts is grateful for all of the people who participated in the making of the video and those who have helped and mentored her. "Most of all I would like to thank all our friends and judges that voted for the TooNice “Burn” music video," Watts says.

Gary Cerantola, chair of the Wasaga Beach Short Film Festival says the WBSFF contributes to “Building the creative economy and fulfilling its mission of bringing the world to Wasaga Beach through a shared passion for film and the power of storytelling.”

The festival received 57 submissions— 47 qualified— from around the world and around the corner: Australia, Egypt, France, Israel, Ireland, Japan, the U.K., the U.S., plus British Columbia, Newfoundland, Barrie, Collingwood, Midland, Nottawa, Ottawa, Tiny Stratford, Toronto, and of course Wasaga Beach. 

Fourth Annual Wasaga Beach Short Film Festival Winners

International Master Category
Platinum Award
First Lesson In love by Tomer Werechson

Gold Award
The Painting by Maxime Brulein

Silver Award
Lost by Mohamed Abd El Kader

National Master Category
Platinum Award
The Artic Experiment by Kenneth Edwards

Gold Award
Sweet Coffee by Mousa Ghodratifard

Silver Award
Before the War by Ruth Lawrence

Regional Master Category Award
Severed Ties by Matt Tipold

Regional Action/Comedy/Drama
Platinum Award
Severed Ties by Matt Tipold

Gold Award
Southern Georgian Bay Chamber of Commerce Video by Denise Hayes, Producer Nate Lacroix

Silver Award
Labelled the Movie by Lana Turcic-Brandau

Regional Music Video Category
Platinum Award
“Burn” TooNice by Mary Ann Watts

Gold Award
“Holdin’ My Breath” Austin McCarthy by Matt Tipold

Silver Award
“Null” by Maria Magovskaia

Regional Video Advertisement Category
Platinum Award
“The Smoke” – Collingwood by Cam Dyment

Gold Award
“Not the Sac” Wax by Andre Arevalo

Silver Award
Everyday is Sundae!” by Sylvia Bray

Congratulations to all of the winners.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Photos with Santa

It’s a time-honoured Christmas tradition for the young, young-at-heart and now our canine friends: having your photo taken with Santa.

Once again the merchants of the Stonebridge Town Centre in Wasaga Beach are hosting Santa’s Castle for photos with Santa.

Santa’s Castle is located in the Stonebridge Town Centre between Sunset Grill and Active Health Care and will be open from Dec. 4 to 21. You never know when the Stonebridge Princess will appear.

Photos cost $12 and the proceeds will be donated to the Wasaga Beach Public Library building fund: Santa’s Helpers are volunteers supporting this fund. The photography is sponsored by Wild Wing Wasaga Beach and the printing is sponsored by the UPS Store.

Santa is pretty busy, so his castle hours are Thursday and Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Take your dog for a photo with St. Nick on Wednesday Dec. 10 and 17 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Global Pet Foods is supplying dog treats: last year 46 dogs visited Santa’s Castle. 

Photos with Santa’s make great memories and gifts: they are a wonderful way to get energized for Christmas. It’s fun for kids and adults, so why not take a big smile, a few of your pals, your best guy or gal and have your photo taken with St. Nick.

“You are never too old to visit Santa,” says Mary Ann Watts of Wild Wing.

To generate a good photo, here are some tips:
•Take your little one after they’ve had a nap and perhaps something eat
•If your child is fussy take their favourite toy to help soothe them or make them smile
•Introduce them to Santa a few days before your photo day, so they won’t be scared
•Be patient with him or her
•For adults, go in with a sense of whimsy and joy
•Wear something comfortable and makes you feel great.

The Stonebridge Town Centre is located at 291 Main Street at Zoo Park Road in Wasaga Beach, just steps from Beach 1. Parking is free:

- Erica Phillips