Kintail Christmas warms hearts of all ages

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by Neil Carleton   

Being at the Mill of Kintail on Saturday, December 15th, was proof positive for first time or frequent visitors.  What a treasure we have in our community.

The Mill, located along the Indian River at 2854 Ramsay Concession 8 in Mississippi Mills, is operated by the Mississippi Valley Conservation Authority.  Yesterday’s event was the annual and very popular Kintail County Christmas.  With bright sunshine, rosy cheeks, and so much to see and do outside and in, there were plenty of sparkling eyes, big smiles, and warm hearts.

Families ruled the day, of course. Children with scavenger hunt clipboards were searching under the pines with grandparents, or making crafts in the Education Center with mom and dad. The wagon ride, Christmas Café, children’s only gift shop, and story telling by the Mill fireplace were also big favourites. Santa stopped by for the day too, and each family received a free photo with jolly St. Nick.
Photo:© Neil Carleton 2012
Along with crafts and a scavenger hunt, the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists provided hot apple cider for visitors at the Education Center. Left-to-right radiating holiday cheer: Patty Summers, Christine McPhail, Shanyne McLaughlin
photo: © Neil Carleton 2012

In the bright December sunshine, fiddle music could be heard when the front door of the Mill  opened.  There was also the sound of excited children carrying photos that showed them perched on Santa’s knee.  Inside was story telling by the fire and carol singing too.

The Mill of Kintail is the home of (i) the R. Tait McKenzie Memorial Museum, showcasing the life and work of the world renowned sculptor, surgeon, and pioneer of rehabilitation, and (ii) the Naismith Museum, honouring Dr. James Naismith the inventor of basketball.
photo: © Neil Carleton 2012

 

Everyone, from toddlers to grandchildren, was quiet as a mouse when Corena McNeill read Christmas stories by the fire at the Mill during the Kintail County Christmas event on December 15th.
photo: © Neil Carleton 2012

 

Ken Ramsden kept toes tapping with fiddle tunes, and led the holiday singing with sleigh bell accompaniment by junior volunteers.
photo: © Neil Carleton 2012

Volunteers make the world go ‘round, and perhaps there’s a way you’d like to help out at the Mill of Kintail during the year, or at the next Kintail Country Christmas.  Along with the display collections of the internationally renowned Drs. McKenzie and Naismith, the site includes:

  • an extensive network of trails to hike, ski, or snowshoe;
  • a fitness trail with activity stations;
  • the Gatehouse Conference Center;
  • the Cloister-on-the-hill for wedding ceremonies; and
  • the Education Center for school programs and the Young Naturalists Club of the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists.

For additional information about the Mill of Kintail, visit http://www.mvc.on.ca/conservation-areas/mill-of-kintail., or call Stephanie Kolsters, Museum Curator, 613-256-3610.

News and information about the Mississippi Valley Field Naturalists, including the Young Naturalists Club, Monday morning hikes, canoe outings, and lecture series, is available at the MVFN’s website http://mvfn.ca/.

 

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