Del Mastro Trial Sentencing Saga

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Dean Del Mastro

Peterborough MP (as he then was) at Peterborough Airport for Global Angels June 21, 2014

Peterborough Member of Parliament Dean Del Mastro has had his days in court over charges he violated the Elections Act in his 2008 re-election campaign. The trial began in Peterborough on June 23 and ended in Lindsay with final evidence heard on July 14. Closing argument was given by the defence  September 2 and by the prosecution on September 4th.  A guilty verdict was given on Halloween.  Parliament then had to consider whether to expel Mr. Del Mastro from Parliament but he resigned just before the vote.

Mr. Del Mastro changed lawyers from a local lawyer Jeff Ayotte to a Toronto criminal law specialist Leo Adler who attempted unsuccessfully to reopen the case on January 27 a date set for sentencing.  This delayed the proceedings so it was adjourned for sentencing in Lindsay on February 19th.  On February 19 the Crown asked for a jail sentence but submissions were not completed. The sentencing saga continued in Lindsay court on April 28th when submissions were completed. It is now expected that the actual sentencing of Mr. Del Mastro will take place on the next court date of June 26.

Meanwhile Peterborough still has no Member of Parliament and the constituency office is overseen by the Speaker of the House of Commons, Andrew Scheer.  Andrew Scheer is a Conservative Member of Parliament representing a riding in Regina Saskatchewan.  It is still possible that a Peterborough by-election will be called but it is almost certain the vacancy will not be filled until a general election for all of Canada later this year.

While charges were pending Mr. Del Mastro sat as an independent Member of Parliament being required to leave the Conservative Party caucus.  The charges concern a payment of $21,000 made by a personal cheque to an Ottawa-based polling firm for which Del Mastro was not reimbursed, exceeding his personal spending limit of $5,000.  Mr. Del Mastro’s cousin David Del Mastro has been charged with offences related to improper campaign contributions to the Dean Del Mastro election campaign to get around donation limits, where his company is alleged to have had employees make contributions in their names, which were not from them personally but using funds of David Del Mastro.

Peterborough’s former Member of Parliament, having been convicted will be sentenced and will face a fine and possibly a jail sentence.   The Conservative candidate to replace the former MP is not yet decided.  The Liberal candidate is Maryam Monsef and the NDP candidate is Dave Nickel.   A federal general election is to be held October 19, 2015 unless the Prime Minister calls an election earlier, and it is not known yet who the local candidates will be from any of the major parties.  Prime Minister Stephen Harper has the authority to call a by-election or he may simply call an early general election.  Stay tuned for more drama.

New Management for Connection Newspaper

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Peterborough Dotorg and the Connection are One

New ownership for the Connection Newspaper joins it with

On January 24, 2014 a transaction was implemented that sees the Connection Newspaper, a 20 year old local community publication change hands, from Saville Publishing to a group headed by Peterborough lawyer Murray H. Miskin.  Murray Miskin is originally from Toronto but came to Peterborough in 1973 to attend Trent University and in more recent years he has served on the University’s Board of Governors and worked with the Alumni Association.  Mr. Miskin promises “big changes, better content and a visually more attractive publication with broader distribution across Peterborough County and into the Kawartha Lakes areas.”  Changes will appear clearly in the February issue which will be printed on bright white paper and improved layout.  “Readers will certainly recognize the paper and we will try to do all the things the Connection has done before and more.” said the new Editor and Publisher. While the newspaper is only printed and distributed once a month it has an active up to date online presence with its blog/website: plus Facebook, Twitter and other Social Media accounts.

The Connection newspaper will commemorate its 20th anniversary in April with a nostalgic look at how the area has grown and changed since the paper began in 1994.  This will include a focus on cottage development and real estate prices on the lakes.  Environmental issues will also be reviewed in light of the great amount of development and the strain this has placed on ecosystems.  Many new cottagers have arrived since 1994 and many who were cottagers have become permanent residents. As Mr. Miskin puts it  “There is greater interaction between cottagers and permanent residents and the line has blurred.  To a large degree the Connection will work to connect the two and their common interests. I was a cottager since 1987 and now I live full time and with less stress on Stoney Lake.  More and more people are making a similar shift or hope to do so.  We are changing the newspaper name to the “Cottage Country Connection” for good reason”.

The new Connection newspaper will strengthen and increase its distribution territory on an incremental basis.  Most distribution has been by direct mail which will continue and soon expand.  The publication’s Manager of Sales Donna Matthews promises “a brighter face for the Connection Newspaper, greater integration with social media platforms and lots of contests for readers.  Advertisers need new and exciting affordable ways to promote their business and we plan to deliver exactly that” Ms. Matthews said.  As a free publication the Connection relies entirely on local businesses who advertise to pay for its publication and distribution costs.  Donna Matthews can be contacted about advertising by email to or by phone to 705-874-1106 or cellphone 705-313-5455

The Cottage Country Connection can be reached by mail and welcomes contributions including local news, event information, poetry and short stories.  Submissions can be mailed to Box 200, Time Square, 380 Armour Rd., Peterborough Ontario, K9H 7L7 or by email to Murray Miskin:

Advertisers and others may submit content for the newspaper to: where the newspaper’s new graphics, design and layout team will work to make it visually appealing for readers.

Editor and Publisher Murray Miskin may be contacted for media interviews, questions or comments by email, or by phone to Miskin Law Office at 705-755-7363.

(Please note that this website is owned by the new owners of The Connection Newspaper and that the above information in this post is a press release issued on January 25, 2014 on behalf of Cottage Country Connection, a Division of 2403262 Ontario Inc.) 


Peterborough’s Hunter Street Bridge

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Fall Colours

View of Otonabee River from Hunter Street Bridge

Our primary symbols for this website are taken from the Hunter Street Bridge which connects downtown Peterborough with the East City across the river. We see this bridge as a key Peterborough landmark with great importance to Peterborough’s history almost equal to the Peterborough Liftlock. The bridge unites the City of Peterborough downtown east and west of the Otonabee River. The East City, as it is now known, was originally the Village of Ashburnham, before it was annexed by the Town of Peterborough in 1904. With an expanded population Peterborough became a city in 1905. There were earlier bridges across the river at Hunter Street but the current Hunter Street Bridge was originally built between 1919 and 1921 and was restored recently, reopening in August 2012. The $8 Million restoration project included 88 terra cotta shamrocks in the railing at the centre, the railing itself, other terra cotta elements including crests of armour and the “Peterborough” inlays at the center, and the large light standards at each end and the middle of the bridge.  Hunter Street is one of Peterborough’s more vibrant streets with many excellent restaurants and other businesses on both sides of the Hunter Street Bridge.

Our website Twitter account @PtboDotOrg uses a shamrock from the Hunter Street bridge as its profile photo.



Robertson Davies 100th Birthday Postage Stamp

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Robertson Davies 100th birthday

Canada Post issued this stamp on August 28, 2013


Canadian novelist Robertson Davies was born in Thamesville Ontario, between Chatham and London, on August 28, 1913 and is remembered with great affection in Peterborough Ontario. where he was a very important member of the community. In Peterborough, Robertson Davies is best remembered as editor and publisher of the Peterborough Examiner Newspaper from 1942 to 1955. Some of Robertson Davies best literary work was written while he was in Peterborough.  Award winning writings done while in Peterborough included;

  • Won the Dominion Drama Festival Award for best Canadian play in 1948 for Eros at Breakfast.
  • Won the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour in 1955 for Leaven of Malice.

He also wrote and directed plays for the Peterborough Theatre Guild, and with his wife Brenda acted in them. He and other family members owned TV and radio stations including Peterborough’s CHEX TV and CHEX AM Radio. After leaving Peterborough Mr. Davies went on to greater fame as founding Master of Massey College of the University of Toronto and with his authorship of the Carl Jung inspired “Deptford Trilogy” of novels released in the 1970s: Fifth Business, The Manticore and World of Wonders.  The fictional town of Deptford was inspired more by Thamesville than by Peterborough. Professor Davies was awarded a Trent University Honourary Doctor of Literature degree in 1974 when Fifth Business and the Manticore were making the author well known on a broader basis. The Manticore won the Governor General’s Award in 1972. Robertson Davies won many awards in recognition of his literary work and was also awarded an Honourary Doctor of Letters by Oxford University in 1991. He was a Companion of the Order of Canada. Robertson Davies died in 1995 at age 82.


Robertson Davies Peterborough Home

Robertson Davies and his daughters outside their home at 572 Waller St. Peterborough

Peterborough the City and the County, Ontario Canada

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Peterborough Canada

This is Peterborough, the heart of Ontario

Welcome to our new web source and community website for Peterborough, Ontario, Canada. This was formerly an informational website of Peterborough, England but it has been captured by Canadians and here we are. You can also find our community page on Facebook. We are in the Central East Region of Southern Ontario about 100 KM northeast of Toronto. The City of Peterborough has a population of 80,000 and the Peterborough County total population is 135,000.  The population expands in the summer with many cottagers living seasonally on the lakes.

This website is designed for Peterborough residents and visitors.  The site was just launched on July 7, 2013.  Keep tuned for lots of good things to follow. We will be adding links to local events, businesses, community organizations, services, sights and activities. Our site does not Tweet (yet) but we do post a feed of new #Ptbo posts on Twitter for informational purposes.

Hunter Street Bridge Shamrocks

One of 88 Shamrocks across Hunter St. Bridge

New Large Provincial Park in Peterborough County

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7th largest Ontario provincial park

Peterborough’s new Kawartha Highlands Park

Peterborough has a large new Provincial Park consisting of 375.87 km2 (92,879.5 acres).  Kawartha Highlands Provincial Park is the 7th largest Provincial Park in Ontario and takes up a large part of Peterborough County. It is 50 km. north of the City of Peterborough and includes all of Anstruther Lake where there are cottages and a number of other lakes in the northwest quadrant of Peterborough County.  It is one of 9 “Signature Sites” in the Ontario parks system and is the most southern of the Signature Sites.  It has recently (in 2011) begun to provide 108 organized back country campsites and limited other facilities for visitors. Access to campsites is by canoe or kayak. Winter camping is allowed by permit only. Reservations are made centrally through Parks Ontario as there is no in park central facility. Click here to reserve a campsite. There is fishing for small mouth bass, large mouth bass, lake trout, brook trout and northern pike. Regulated hunting is allowed too. There are six established canoe routes through the Park and most of the campsites exist along the canoe routes where they informally existed for many years before. This new park in cottage country dwarfs nearby Petroglyphs Provincial Park, a historic site for day use only. Kawartha Highlands Park was in a planning stage from 1997 and became chartered as a park with legislation passed in 2003. A regulation proclaimed April 21, 2005 made this vast area a Provincial Park. It has many access points which are not controlled like those of most other parks. Its Existing residential cottage use has been allowed to continue with all other lands in the park boundary publicly owned and environmentally protected. Kawartha Highlands Park is classified as a “Natural Environment Park” and considered to be “Semi Wilderness”. It is a great place to explore in Peterborough County. If you visit the park please share your experience with a comment on this post or by tweeting using #Ptbo

Ontario's 7th largest park

A treasure of Peterborough and the Kawarthas