One of the city's biggest crowd draws takes place this weekend. The annual Thunder Bay Blues Festival is on at Marina Park. Organizer Bob Halverson says there will be no issues with the waterfront construction thats taking place. He's encouraging people to take the free shuttle bus from the Community Auditorium. It will be leaving every 15 minutes while the festival gates are open. Gates open on Friday at 4:30 and Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m.
The District Health Unit says it's pleased with the response to it's tick and lyme disease program. Spokesperson Anita LaPointe says only one tick has been found to have the disease out of the hundreds the public have left for testing. She says in all of last year 218 ticks were submitted and so far this year 465 have been dropped off. LaPointe expects those numbers to increase in the fall.
You the city taxpayer have finally paid off the loan the city took out in 2000 to support the Regional Health Science's Centre. That 35 million dollar debenture will be officially paid off on Saturday. City Manager Tim Commisso says what this will do for next years tax increase is not known. He says the 3 and a half million dollars amounts to 1 per cent of the current operating budget. He says it's too early to talk about any tax reduction.
The interest over the life of the loan was 10 million dollars
Organizers of the World Junior Baseball Championships can breath a bit easier now. The Harper government has come through with some support for the event. The FedNor grant amounts to 75 thousand dollars and will be used towards marketing efforts. The championships are being held from July 23rd until August 3.
Lakehead University President Fred Gilbert calls it an interesting choice. Gilbert is reacting to the appointment of David Johnston as the next Governor General. Gilbert says he knows Johnston, which makes the choice personal for him. Gilbert says Johnson has a background in law along with a great inquiring mind and will serve us well as Governor General. Johnston begins his new job in the fall
The new president of the Regional Health Sciences Centre insists the controversy surrounding her will not cause a distraction for her new job. Andree Robichaud is leaving her health executive position in New Brunswick under a political storm. She's even been accused of poor management. She calls that interesting since it was only brought up when she announced her resignation. Robichaud hopes people will judge her on her own merits when she get here in October.
The forest fire hazard is still low to moderate in the region. One new fire was reported yesterday. It is in th Sioux lookout district about 120 kilometers north of Pickle Lake. Sixty Ontario staff as well as two waterbombers, and one birddog are assisting with escalated fire activity in Manitoba. Crew training and audits continue in the region.
Sioux Lookout OPP are charging two people after a major drug bust in the community. Police executed a search warrant at the residence earlier this week. Two people were arrested and police seized a large quantity of marijuana worth over five thousand dollars. Arrested were 31 year old Quirino Agustin and twenty-four year old Aaron Saville, both from Sioux Lookout. The two were released from custody and have September court dates.
Thunder Bay's Crimestoppers program is on the right track for 2010. To date 406 calls have been made to Crimestoppers around the district. Co-ordinator Constable Wendell Brown says they're pretty much on par with the 2009's stats. Brown adds they've paid out over 9 thousand dollars.
There's a taste of Italian culture on the south side this weekend. Thunderfest is taking place at the Da Vinci Centre. Organizers say there will be entertainment. For the first time only local musicians will be taking to the outdoor stage. There will also be Italian food.