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Spring Greetings from Hike Ontario!

THIS ISSUE: We report on Bill 100 "Supporting Ontario's Trails Act", announce this year's "Healthy Parks, Healthy People" initiative, encourage participation in the "Healthy Hikes" program, and report on International Trails Day 2016. We also announce the Maitland Trail Association's El Camino event, and provide news on upcoming Training Course dates, .  

As always, stay happy and healthy in the great outdoors, hikers. We wish you Happy Trails!

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Bill 100 - "Supporting Ontario's Trails Act"

Ontario's first trails act is wending its way through the law-making process. The Act was introduced into the Ontario Legislature by the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, Minister Michael Coteau early this year. After some discussion in the Legislature, it was referred to a Standing Committee for 10 hours of debate. At the conclusion of the debate, it was decided by the MPP's to hold two days of hearings in Toronto, each of 2 hours. The Members decided which groups they would invite, on the basis of the external expressions of interest that had been made to the Ministry or the Legislature staff. Hike Ontario was selected (along with the Avon Trail Club, the Ontario Trails Council, the Bruce Trail Conservancy, and 8 other groups.) Hike Ontario's brief is attached.

In about a week's time, the Hansard for the Standing Committee on the Legislature will be published online, and those who wish to see the presentations by all groups as well as the questions asked by the MPP's and the groups' answers will have hours of interesting reading.

The fate of the Bill has yet to be determined by the Committee, and ultimately, by the House.

So much for the evolving of the process...stay tuned for the outcome. We plan to say more about the quite unnecessary and paranoid controversies over this modest Bill, and the Bill itself, in a future newsletter.

In the meantime...strong landowner relations should continue to be every club's priority at this point.

To see Hike Ontario's official response to Bill 100, please click HERE.

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Healthy Parks, Healthy People

Healthy Parks, Healthy People is on July 15 and all provincial parks are open for Day Use Visitors at no charge! Hike Leaders who wish to lead a hike in a provincial park on this day, may also gain entry to the park ahead of time in order to pre-hike and plan their route. Last year's event was a great success (apart from being the worst weather day the whole province had). .

For more information, please go to ontarioparks.com/hphp

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Healthy Hikes - Boost Your Health!

May 2 - Oct 31

Hike Ontario is a partner with Conservation Ontario in Healthy Hikes – a yearly program to encourage hiking in Conservation Areas. Hidden within these natural gems are lakes, rivers, and streams as well as wetlands, sand dunes, beaches, waterfalls, caves, and forests just waiting to be explored.

It all starts on May 2 and goes until October 31, 2016.

For more information, please go to www.healthyhikes.ca

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International Trails Day

June 4, 2016

International Trails Day is a day dedicated to celebrate trails, their development, uses and the healthy lifestyle they encourage. For many years now North America has traditionally celebrated a trails day on the first Saturday in June.

We are inviting you to share with us in developing a public awareness of trails by hosting an event and listing it in our website.

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Maitland El Camino (Sept. 24-25, 2016)

In support of the Maitland Trail Association

El Camino Maitland (El Camino de Sinuoso Rio Maitland) is a 49km, 2-day hike along the entire Maitland Trail.  It’s modeled after the somewhat-more-famous El Camino de Santiago de Compostella, the pilgrimage from southern France through the north of Spain to the Atlantic Ocean.

The event takes place on Saturday, September 24, and Sunday, September 25, 2016. Registration opens May 24th, so don't miss your chance to take part in this great experience.

For more information, please visit the Oak Ridges Trail Association event page here: http://www.maitlandtrail.ca/mtaelcamino2016/

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Upcoming Course Dates

Hike Ontario has many great training courses that are currently being offered:

• Certified Hike Leader (May 28 - Oakville)

• Certified Hike Leader (June 4 - London)

• Navigation: Map, Compass, and GPS (November 5 - Orangeville)

• Certified Hike Leader (November 12 - Orangeville)

Registrations are quickly filling up, so don't miss your chance to experience one of these great courses.

To see our online Course Calendar, please click HERE.

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