Billings provides updates on Kagawong trails, market, volunteer efforts

The Old Mill in Kagawong

BILLINGS – The Township of Billings Municipal Emergency Control Group (MECG) continues to monitor the local COVID-19 situation and assess the reopening of various municipal facilities and amenities in the context of provincial emergency orders, public health guidelines and the staged approach to relaxing restrictions. 

MECG can provided the following updates: 

Bridal Veil Falls and Kagawong River Trails: Bridal Veil Falls and the stairs to access them remain closed. The viewing platform above Bridal Veil Falls and a portion of the Kagawong River trail were opened last week. Physical distancing must be maintained between persons not of the same household and masks must be worn while using the viewing platform. Masks must be worn while using the trail if physically distancing is challenging. 

“We have been monitoring compliance with these measures and will continue to do so,” a press release from the MECG states. “Unfortunately, while most users have been following the rules and respecting the health and safety of themselves and our community, there have been numerous incidents of non-compliance. Should the non-compliance continue or escalate, we will be forced to close these reopened spaces.”

The public washroom facilities at the Old Mill Heritage Centre remain closed. A portable toilet has been installed next to the Kagawong Pavilion. 

Kagawong Market: Planning for opening the Kagawong Market is underway. The market will be relocated to the Old Church on the Hill (outdoors) for this season in order to implement COVID-19 measures and to avoid construction around the Small Craft Basin area. 

State of Emergency:The province has extended its state of emergency until the end of June. The declared state of emergency within the township remains in place at this time. 

The township received funding from the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program in collaboration with United Way Centraide North East Ontario/Nord-est de l’Ontario and, in partnership with St. John’s Anglican Church and other local volunteers, used the funds for reusable cloth masks for any interested Billings resident aged 55+. The funds were also used for care packages of groceries and personal care items, assembled and delivered to local seniors by our friendly volunteers.

“We hope this initiative helped our local seniors know they’re not alone and feel a little more comfortable getting back out into the community.”