Province blocks purchase of Muskoka Regional Centre property

Dear members,

First, thanks to all those who were involved in the advocacy campaign that resulted in over 500 letters of support sent to the premier and ministers involved in the proposed sale of the Muskoka Centre to Bethune China Maple Leaf Schools.

Now again, it is time for action.

It was announced at a special council meeting on Oct. 5 that the sale of the Muskoka Regional Centre property has reached an impasse in negotiations with the province. Negotiations were underway with the Bethune China Maple Leaf school developers for a project that would bring at least 200 jobs to the community.

At the meeting, council asked the business community to get involved and write letters to those who could help bring the province back to the table. We are asking you all to get involved and this time email all those listed below. The letter need not be long, but should be personal. Let them know Gravenhurst wants this school.

The full council report is available at:

Below are the email addresses of those who would be the best people to contact.

Hon. Kathleen O Wynne

Legislative Bldg Rm 281, Queens Park

Toronto, ON M7A 1A1 or ( Carly is her Executive Assistant

Hon. Brad Duguid

7th Flr, 56 Wellesley St W,

Toronto, ON M7A 2E7 or ( Charles is his Chief of Staff

Hon. Bob Chiarelli

Hearst Block 8th Flr, 900 Bay St.

Toronto, ON M7A 2E1 or ( Alain is his executive assistant

In a public statement Mayor Paisley Donaldson said, “Today, while I am disheartened by the news of an impasse in negotiations with the Province, I remain optimistic that a positive conclusion is around the corner and that we will, as a community reach our objectives.

“Through previous correspondence, I have expressed my concerns to Premier Kathleen Wynne and asked her to realize the huge potential and benefits of this redevelopment, not only for our community, but for the Province as a whole. I intend to continue to push the Premier’s Office further to find an alternative way to allow this important project to proceed. Staff and Council will also revisit our strategy and explore ways we can move forward.”

Tara Doyle and Sandy Lockhart
Gravenhurst Chamber of Commerce

New Grant Opportunity for Businesses in Parry Sound/Muskoka

Are you an established business looking for assistance in technological implementation? STAMP- Small Business Technology Assessment Monitoring and Planning grant is now available in the Parry Sound Muskoka area. $6250 assessible to help small businesses address information and communication technology (ICT) obstacles.

For more information, eligibility, and the application process
please visit the website:,
email at
or call Laura at 705-360-1353 ext. 34

Gravenhurst Steps Up To Help Support BC Wildfire Victims

Earlier this month, on July 7th, the province of British Columbia became engulfed in flames. Over 45,000 people have been displaced from their homes – quickly becoming one of the largest displacement events in the history of the province.

British Columbia remains in a state of emergency while 155 wildfires continue to roar across the province, fifteen of them threatening communities.

Alvin Naicker, founder and owner of Surftek Surfboards, has requested the help of the Gravenhurst Chamber of Commerce to get the community involved to work together to support this worthy cause. At the chamber we are working with The Canadian Red Cross to support those impacted in BC, and in our efforts to do so we have set up an online donation portal for our community. Through this portal you are able to donate to this deserving cause, where proceeds will go towards immediate relief such as cots and blankets, financial assistance for families including food, clothing and other personal needs. As well many donations will go towards long-term recovery needs. Alvin is donating $500 himself and is challenging others to donate what they can.

We are urging individuals and businesses to donate whatever they can – any amount helps.

Canada Day Fun In Gravenhurst

Grab your red and white because Canada Day is this weekend! Join us in Gravenhurst for endless opportunities of fun for Canada 150. Gull Lake Rotary Park is holding all day activities, including a free BBQ with birthday cake! As well make sure to stop by the library or Bethune Memorial House for other family fun activities. Check out our events page for details or feel free to give us a call if you have any questions. The Gravenhurst Chamber wishes you a safe and happy Canada Day!

24th Annual Gravenhurst Car Show


The 24th Annual Gravenhurst Car Show, the largest car show in Northern Ontario and proudly sponsored by Canadian Tire Gravenhurst and many more, takes place Father’s Day Weekend on Saturday June 17th at Gull Lake Rotary Park. With over 400 vehicles anticipated, a Kidz Zone, unique vendors, and a Food & Music Lounge sponsored by Sawdust City Brewing Company, the day of is definitely going to be a hit.

Come to our information night April 6th! 

Join us on April 6 at the Trillium Court (located inside the Gravenhurst Opera House) for an information session on our upcoming trip to China. Harish from Indus Travel will join us starting at 6:30 Pm to discuss the details of the trip, which is set for departure on Sept. 18.

Harish will outline the itinerary for the 8 day adventure, including the scheduled stops and accommodations. Learn about the culture, food and language of the people you will encounter on your trip. Find out more about destinations on the tour (cost is $2,490 for Chamber members – taxes included) including the 2,000 year old Great Wall of China, the Forbidden City and the Lingering Garden.


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Where to Get Your Maple Fix in Gravenhurst

Baked Goodies & Sweets


For the Muskoka Maple Trail, you have to try their maple pecan apple strudel, a homemade pastry with an apple and maple pecan filling, topped with their famous puff pastry and coated in maple frosting. You can also pick up their delicious maple pecan square which starts with their famous butter cookie recipe base, a gooey maple pecan filling and topped with milk chocolate drizzle. Stop in Tuesday – Saturday to try these decadent treats.


Maple Brews & Cocktails

Sawdust City Brewing Company has injected some sweetness into their tasting board this season. Visit Sawdust City Brewing Company and sample their limited release beer Eagle’s Tear. Brewed with pure Muskoka water, this Maple Coffee Sour Red Ale is available in The Sawdust City Saloon and for purchase in the Brewery’s retail store. When the sap flows, the Brewery features a variety of maple beer as well as butter tarts, and their own Dark Maple Syrup blend available for purchase. Request a booking for a brewery tour, offered 12pm to 5pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
Retail Beer Store Hours: 9am – 11pm
Saloon Hours: 11am – 11pm

The Oar & Paddle has long been known for their innovative cocktails, and will be featuring two must-try cocktails on their during the Muskoka Maple Trail.

  • Maple Bacon Caesar, if you love Caesars then this is a must-try
  • Maple Bourbon Manhattan, a sweet twist on one of the classics!

Pancake Breakfast

This family favourite restaurant in downtown Gravenhurst will be serving a Muskoka maple breakfast special featuring their fluffy buttermilk pancakes smothered in local Muskoka maple syrup. Pancake breakfasts are the quintessential way to start your day during the spring maple harvest so stop in for breakfast



Maple Inspired Cuisine


Old Mill Family Restaurant is celebrating the spring harvest with their fresh and delicious Spring Salad served with a beautiful Muskoka Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette. Stop in for lunch or dinner to try this delicious and fresh course.


The Oar & Paddle will be serving up their famous chicken wings with their own in-house sauce recipe ‘Smokey BBQ Maple Bacon’. It is the perfect blend of smokiness and sweet, and might soon become your favourite wing sauce!

Overnight getaway

Follow the Maple Trail to experience Muskoka’s signature maple syrup and enjoy an overnight stay at the Residence Inn Gravenhurst Muskoka Wharf! Explore the Muskoka Maple Trail and try unique experiences such as sugar bush tours and sleigh rides, or taste the delicious maple-inspired menus and maple-flavoured beer!

Offer includes:

  • Suite accommodation (with complimentary upgrade based on availability)
  • Complimentary full hot daily breakfast buffet for two that includes waffles and local maple syrup
  • A bottle of sparkling wine upon arrival
  • Maple candies upon arrival

After a fun-filled day of exploring, enjoy stunning views of Lake Muskoka from the comfort of your suite, or unwind in our indoor pool and whirlpool. Book your maple adventure this minute!