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Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Sauble Long Weekend Sees Half Of Last Year's Numbers

Sauble Beach | by Claire McCormack  

Mayor says last year saw 150,000 visitors for Canada Day, this year saw 60,000

As the Town braced for a massive influx of visitors this Canada Day long weekend, Sauble Beach saw much lower numbers than last year.

South Bruce Peninsula Mayor Janice Jackson says last year's long weekend saw roughly 150,000 people pour into the beach community.

This year she estimates it was less than half of that at about 60,000 people, which she says was the average before numbers ballooned last year.  

The Town had prepared for more vehicles coming to the north end of the beach this year, as Saugeen First Nation has banned parking directly on the beach.

Two more municipal paid lots were arranged to accommodate an increase in vehicles.

Jackson says while it was busy, it wasn't the weekend they prepped for, "I recall last year, it was way warmer. It was smoking hot last Canada Day. We had a larger beach. The water level is so high we've lost at least half our beach," says Jackson.

But she says "Roughly 60,000 is an average long weekend for us. So that's an awful lot of people to descend upon our little community."

Jackson says the town has tasked its bylaw officers with ticketing people who park in business parking lots like the grocery store and go spend the day at the beach.

The town also added extra garbage cans and dumpsters to beach access areas, but Jackson says it's still a challenge to get people to actually put their garbage in the cans.

Jackson notes fireworks were at 9th Street North this year "We have to stay outside of the plover enclosures and the fireworks company needs a 100 foot radius for a fallout zone and there is so little beach up there right now, that was the only area that we could provide."

The Town is in the middle of a court case over beach maintenance and piping plovers with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.

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