GREEN ACRES IS THE PLACE BE… (go ahead, hum the theme)
My husband’s family has strong roots in Wingham and when he and I decided to make a life together we decided that it would be in Wingham.
When I interviewed for my job at CKNX in Wingham, my future boss asked if I had ever lived anywhere other than Toronto. I answered yes, London. He said that it gave him comfort to know that I had lived somewhere smaller than Toronto. Then I broke it to him. London, England. But I assured him that moving somewhere smaller wouldn’t be a problem. I would be happy here as long as I had friends. The year we got married the banks of snow were 12 feet high at the end of our driveway and my girlfriends wondered if I was still sure about my decision (I am not a big snow shoveller). The co-workers I left behind worried that the move from downtown Toronto to small-town Wingham was going to be too much of a change. But I was certain. It would be fine.
That interview was 17 years ago and I was right. In that time I have made some of the best friends I will ever have. I have learned to love hockey, appreciate golfing on a Friday afternoon, run a snowblower, make a cardboard canoe, and walk a little slower.
Foxton Fuels is a family business and has been a part of the community for over 40 years. It was originally owned by my husband’s father and is now owned by my husband.
It’s true that Wingham doesn’t have everything a city has. We don’t have a mall, but we have local merchants who know your name and offer to order something in for you if it isn’t in stock. We don’t have the selection of restaurants a city has, but we have coffee shops and other restaurants that are all within walking distance. We don’t have a major league sports team, the National Ballet or Symphony, but we have the Blyth Festival in our backyard and local sports teams that everyone comes to support. We don’t have condos on every corner, but we have large backyards, many without fences, and neighbours who know who we are and can be counted on in times of crisis or just if you need to borrow something. I am home and making dinner while most of my friends in Toronto are still sitting in traffic. We have a first class hospital, which has significantly expanded its services to residents.
The work/life balance so many people search for is attainable here in Wingham. Emphasis is placed on quality of life, family, sports, spending time with friends and relaxing. For me, community involvement plays an active part in that balance. The Musical Muskrat Festival, the BIA, and Minor Sports are just some of the organizations that strengthen our community, and they are successful due to the time and effort donated by various people. Participating in sports is so much more affordable here than in the city. The Wingham Golf and Curling Club, the North Huron Wescast Community Complex, walking trails, and organized sports are accessible to all.
In 2014 our Homecoming is the perfect time for people to return and rediscover all that Wingham has to offer, for those who live here to celebrate their home town, and for someone who has never visited to see why we are proud to call Wingham home.
I moved to Wingham for love and I have fallen in love with Wingham.