Current Situation in Whitchurch-Stouffville

Our community will be forever changed as a result of the COVID-19 virus. While the impacts have been felt across all areas of the Town, some municipal work and parts of our community are feeling pressures far greater than others.

As we move ahead and look forward in our continued response to the COVID-19 emergency and plan for our new reality, these areas require extra consideration, attention and problem solving. There will be a significant change to the way the Town delivers these particular services due to the profound impacts that will continue as we manage this pandemic in Whitchurch-Stouffville.

 

Page last updated: August 10, 2020

Ontario Reopening Phases

PHASE ONE (Complete)

Phase One Icon Opening businesses that can immediately meet or modify operations to meet public health advice and workplace safety measures.

PHASE TWO (Complete)

Phase Two IconTaking a regional approach to opening more businesses and services, as well as community, recreational and outdoor spaces, while emphasizing public health advice and personal responsibility.

PHASE THREE – Coming July 24

Phase Three IconTaking a regional approach to opening most businesses and services and all public spaces, with health and safety measures in place, and continuing to emphasize personal responsibility.

MASKS / FACE COVERINGS MANDATORY

As of 12:01 a.m. Friday July 17, 2020, masks or face coverings are required inside enclosed public spaces in York Region.

The Regional Municipality of York has endorsed a recommendation from York Region Medical Officer of Health Dr. Karim Kurji to issue an instruction requiring operators of enclosed public spaces in York Region to have a policy in place that prohibits persons from entering premises of the establishment if the person is not wearing a face mask or covering, subject to appropriate exemptions.

Effective Friday, July 17, 2020 as of 12:01 a.m., business owners and operators in York Region must have a policy in place to prohibit people from entering if they are not wearing a face mask or covering. Customers, employees and visitors who enter enclosed public spaces must wear a face mask or covering.

This Instruction applies to the following establishments:

  • Premises or any portion thereof which are used as a place of business for the sale or offering for sale of goods or services, and includes a mall or similar structure which contains multiple places of business
  • Churches, mosques, synagogues, temples, or other places of worship
  • Community centres including indoor recreational facilities
  • Libraries, art galleries, museums, aquariums, zoos and other similar facilities
  • Community service agencies providing services to the public
  • Banquet halls, convention centres, arenas, stadiums, and other event spaces
  • Premises utilized as an open house, presentation centre, or other facility for real estate purposes
  • Common areas of hotels, motels and other short-term rentals, such as lobbies, elevators, meeting rooms or other common use facilities
  • Concert venues, theatres, cinemas, casinos, and other entertainment facilities

Information for Business Owners and Operators

  • You must create a mask policy for your establishment
  • You must communicate this new policy to staff and customers
  • You must train your staff on the policy and who is exempt
  • All staff, customers or visitors must wear a mask indoors, with some exceptions (e.g. children under the age of five and people with certain health conditions, employees in designated areas or protected by a physical barrier)
  • Proof is not required if someone has an exemption
  • Signage must be posted at all entrances advising everyone to wear a mask

Summary

OPEN

  • Basketball courts (non-team play)
  • Bruce’s Mill Conservation Area
  • Summer camps & programs – Museum
  • Summer camps & programs – Recreation
  • Community gardens
  • Cricket pitches (non-team play)
  • Indoor pool at Leisure Centre
  • Farmers’ Market
  • Outdoor fitness equipment
  • Pickleball courts
  • Playgrounds
  • Running tracks
  • Rouge National Urban Park
  • Soccer fields (non-team play)
  • Skateboard parks
  • Stouffville off-leash dog park
  • Stouffville Reservoir trails
  • Tennis courts
  • Trails (Town-owned)
  • Whitchurch Conservation Area
  • York Regional Forests

SERVICES OPERATING / AVAILABLE

  • Community engagement (various)
  • Customer service
  • By-Law Enforcement including parking
  • Building Permits
  • Committee Meetings
  • Council Meetings
  • Emergency Services
  • Library services (various)
  • Movies in the Park
  • Planning applications
  • Property inspections
  • Public Planning Meetings
  • Road Maintenance
  • Waste and Recycling collection
  • Water treatment services
  • Watermeter replacement program
  • Wedding permits

CURRENTLY CLOSED

  • Arenas
  • Community Centers
  • Latcham Art Center
  • Lebovic Center for the Performing Arts – ‘Nineteen on the Park’
  • Leisure Center including fitness center (to open August 24), meeting rooms and gymnasium. 
  • Museum (Tours and private rentals starting August 4)
  • Operations Center (public access)
  • Town Hall
  • Whitchurch-Stouffville Public Library building

PROGRAM / SERVICE NOT OPERATING

  • Facility Rentals
  • Fire Stations 5-1 and 5-2 (public access)
  • Fire Department tours and educational programs

DETAILS COMING

  • Stouffville Country RibFest
  • Museum Antique & Classic Car Show

CANCELLED

  • Doors Open Whitchurch-Stouffville
  • Decoration Day at cemetery
  • Canada Day fireworks
  • Food Truck Frenzy
  • Victoria Day fireworks
  • Markham Fair

PROGRAM/SERVICE IMPACTS

Customer Service

All general inquiries will be handed by Whitchurch-Stouffville’s Customer Service Centre. We are available by telephone (905-640-1900) or email (customer.service@townofws.ca) from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday. For municipal emergency service outside these hours, please call 905-640-1900 ext. 0 and follow the prompts for our after-hours service

Outdoor Recreation Amenities

All outdoor recreation amenities are open, with the exception of beaches, playgrounds, outdoor fitness equipment, and school properties.  Open outdoor areas may be used by individuals, or a group of up to 10 people from the same household. Town trails are open.  For a complete list, see the Summary posted above.

Police and by-law officers are charging people.  Fines begin at $300 and range to $5000 for repeat offenders. 

Recreation Programs, Camps and Pool

Summer camps begin July 20 and run for 7 weeks.  The Town is also implementing a take home “Camp-in-the-box” for parents and children wishing to conduct camp activities from their home.  The “Camp-in-a-box” activities will begin July 13 and have several options to choose from.

Details about camp registration and locations are available at townofws.ca. Registration will begin online, on Tuesday July 7, at townofws.ca/wsplayonline.  Camp registration is available to Whitchurch-Stouffville residents until July 17 and then opened to non-residents, space permitting, on July 18.  Registration will continue until camps are full.

In addition to running summer camps, the indoor pool at the Whitchurch-Stouffville Leisure Centre is now open with Lane swim and Aquafit scheduled. The addition of Family leisure swims and private lessons will come in August. Pre-registration is in place for all pool activities and programs. Details and schedule with barcodes can be found at: townofws.ca/leisureguide.

Limited  outdoor fitness opportunities are also offered for all ages, featuring a variety of  programs and personal training. The Fitness centre is scheduled to reopen on August 24 for modified programming. All fitness programs at this time are by pre-registration only.  Visit the Town’s website for more information.

Registration for all programs is online only at townofws.ca/wsplayonline.   Residents are asked to call the Leisure Center at (905) 642-7529 for more details.

Town Facilities

The following Town facilities remain closed to the public until further notice under the direction of the Province:  Town Hall, WS Leisure Centre (with exception to the indoor pool), WS Public Library, all arenas, all community centres, 19 on the Park, WS Museum, both Fire Halls, SoccerCity and 6240 Main Street (55+ Club).  For more information about the closures, see the public notice here.

Museum & Community Centre

Museum staff are pleased to announce the museum reopening on Wednesday, August 12th. From Wednesday to Saturday each week, the museum will be offering private tours – visit the site today to book your preferred time.

The museum will continue to bring you a variety of Learn From Home options at townofws.ca/museum. Visit L4A.ca to view the virtual exhibit, Archaeology Alive: The Jean-Baptiste Lainé Site in Whitchurch-Stouffville. You will also find regular posts from the Museum on @WSMuseum on Facebook – posts include historic photos and local stories. For further information about rentals, research appointments and donations, or to book your tour, please contact wsmuseum@townofws.ca or 1 (905) 727-8954.

Public Library

The Whitchurch-Stouffville Public Library will launched Phase Two of its staged reopening plan on July 21, 2020. This allows customers entry into the Library to use computer, photocopier, and printing services.

Customers wishing to use Library computers will have to make a reservation and will be granted a 45-minute block of computer time per day, per Library card. At this time, no gaming is allowed. Computers and computer equipment will be cleaned and sanitized before the next reservation block to ensure public safety.

The Library’s curbside pick-up service will move inside the Library on July 21st with customers able to enter the library facility to pick up items placed on hold. Customers can place items on hold online using the Library’s catalogue or by calling the Library. Note that as of July 17 all holds notifications will be moving to email only; no phone calls (unless specified in the library card user information) will be made.

The Library’s phase two hours are Tuesday: 10:00-1:00pm (holds pickup) and 3:00-7:00pm (computer bookings), Thursday: 3:00-7:00pm (holds pickup and computer bookings), Friday: 10:00-1:00pm (holds pickup and computer bookings) and Saturday: 10:00-1:00pm (holds pickup and computer bookings). Customers wishing to make an appointment to use the computer, photocopier, and printing services during these hours can call the Library at 905-642-7323 ext. 5225 and leave us a voicemail or email us at wsplinfo@wsplibrary.ca.

For more information and updates, please visit www.wsplibrary.ca.

Council and Committee Meetings

All Council and Committee meetings, until further notice, will be held via teleconference at 1 p.m.  Further details are on the Council and Committee Page.
 

By-Law Inquiries

Please send all By-Law enforcement inquiries by phone or email only. By-Law will not be setting up meetings or facilitating tickets in person, however, it can be done by phone, online or email. By-Law will be reviewing all complaints as to whether it is safe to attend that particular property and/or meet with property owners.

Animal Services’ calls will be responded to case by case. Our shelter has been shut down to the public therefore we will no longer be able to take in domestic animals. We would like to remind residents to be extra diligent at this time to ensure that their pets are not at large.  Also, if your dog does not have a dog tag it is highly recommended that you purchase one now. Dog tags can be purchased at townofws.ca/dogtags

Parking bylaws are still being enforced. If any residents have any By-Law questions, please call 905 640 1910 (ex. 2229) or Customer Service at (905) 640-1900.

Development Services

The Town continues to accept building and planning applications and customers can drop non-confidential plans and relevant information in the drop-box at Town Hall. Due to construction, the drop-box is now located near the entrance next to the York Regional Police office.  All meetings with external clients will be converted to conference calls. We will continue to schedule and conduct building and engineering inspections on unoccupied buildings and inspections that are outside (open-air) only.

For more information about the effect of COVID-19 on Planning Division procedures, visit the dedicated COVID-19 updates page for planning.  For more detailed information about building permit applications and inspections, please visit our dedicated COVID-19 page

Emergency Services

All emergency services provided by the Whitchurch-Stouffville Fire & Emergency Services will remain uninterrupted. All public education events have or will be cancelled until further notice, including school visits and station tours. All non-essential fire prevention activities have also been cancelled or postponed. The Fire Prevention Division will still be responding to requests and/or complaints that involve immediate threat to life. Burn permits are still available online on the Town’s website. Fire Station 5-1 and Fire Station 5-2 remain closed to the public.

Roads and Infrastruction

Our on-call Operator is available through the Town’s after hour service at (905) 640-1900. Down stop signs, flooding, trees that have fallen across roads/sidewalks will be dealt with immediately. Other road activities such as tree trimming, pothole patching, will continue. Winter maintenance activities of roads, sidewalks and municipal parking lots will continue and be conducted as required.

Water quality sampling will continue as per Provincial regulations and water/wastewater emergencies such as breaks and backups, will be dealt with immediately. Water/wastewater Operators will not be entering private homes, however, they will respond to investigate the municipal infrastructure and advise residents to contact a private plumber for internal investigations. Routine water/wastewater activities will continue. Further inquiries should be directed to Customer Service at (905) 640-1900.

Waste Collection

Solid waste collection and recycling will continue as usual. Inquiries should be directed to Green For Life (GFL) Customer Service at 1-866-421-5625.

POSTPONED / CANCELLED EVENTS OR PROGRAMS

Decoration Day at the cemetery

The annual Decoration Day Service at Stouffville Cemetery featuring a non-denominational service celebrating the memory of loved ones, traditionally held in June, will be postponed until Fall 2020 due to COVID-19. Updates on a new date will be provided. In memoriam, donations are gratefully accepted year-round online or at the event. For more information, please contact Stephanie Thomson at stephanie.thomson@townofws.ca 905-640-1910 x 2225

Strawberry Festival

The 2020 Whitchurch-Stouffville Strawberry Festival has been cancelled.  The organizers look forward to returning in 2021. The Strawberry Festival takes place over the Canada Day weekend and is run for the benefit of our community – all the Festival organized entertainment and kids’ activities are free. From the festival market, to inflatables, live entertainment, the food zone, pancake breakfast, the Red Berry Café, fireworks and all the fun in between – it’s a weekend where thousands come to participate and enjoy, and it takes place in the heart of Stouffville in Memorial Park.  For more information, please visit strawberryfestival.ca

Stouffville Ribfest

Stouffville Country Ribfest is coming to you in an amended format this year.  The event will now take place on the 1st weekend in October in a Drive-Thru format.  Please stay tuned for more information and details by heading to: townofws.ca/en/explore/special-events.aspx

This local family event runs Friday through Sunday and brings you ribs, food, beer, a kids’ zone, live entertainment, a marketplace and more!  Admission by donation supports the Join IN! Recreation Subsidy Fund. The money raised helps to remove financial barriers for those who otherwise would not be able to participate in local recreation and culture programs.

Food Truck Frenzies

Please note that both Food Truck Frenzies for 2020 (June 18 & September 11) have been cancelled. We look forward to continuing these events in 2021.

Food Truck Frenzy occurs each year in June and September and allows you to experience Food Trucks from across the GTA in our own Memorial Park. You will enjoy bands and entertainment as you sample dishes from over 20 different vendors.

Antique & Classic Car Show

The Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum & Community Centre’s annual Antique & Classic Car Show has been cancelled this year due to current restrictions. Museum Staff and Volunteers look forward to picking up again in 2021.

The Museum’s Antique & Classic Car Show occurs each year in August and is a highly anticipated event that brings together the surrounding community with something for the entire family to look forward to, from tours of onsite historical buildings to hundreds of antique and classic cars. Next year the show will be celebrating its 48th anniversary, and the Museum is looking forward to welcoming their guests!

Movies in the Park

Movies in the Park will now be taking place on Fridays August 21, September 4 and September 11 in Memorial Park. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets and enjoy family favourites under the stars!

PRE-REGISTRATION WILL BE REQUIRED as space is limited.  Please stay tuned for further details coming soon at: townofws.ca/events

Markham Fair

According to the Markham Fair’s website,

“It is with a heavy heart that the Board of Directors of Markham Fair announce the cancellation of the 2020 Fair, originally scheduled for Oct. 1, 2, 3 & 4, 2020.

This decision was made with the consultation of our membership, trade organizations and government agencies. Using all information currently available, the Board has unanimously decided that the safety of our visitors, volunteers, staff and vendors is our primary concern.”

The Markham Fair is an annual event hosted by the Markham and East York Agricultural Society. Originally agricultural societies would meet on a regular basis to discuss various concepts of agricultural improvement such as livestock development and increased grain yields. Often the society would collectively purchase a bull or seed grain, which would be made available to members only. The fall fair would then be an opportunity for the farmers to compete by showing off the fruits of their labour.Due to increased technology and rapid communication, agricultural societies no longer find it necessary to provide this service. The Markham Fair continues to create the forum known as the fall fair.