Legion looking for support as flood season ends

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Great Village, By Patti Sharpe

Construction on new bridge to replace 100+ year-old structure to start soon

Spring is officially here and I'm sure no one is happier to hear that than the folks at the Royal Canadian Legion in Great Village. The ice that backs up in the river throughout the winter contributes to the ongoing flooding issues they’ve been experiencing. Once it’s gone, they only have heavy rainfalls to worry about.

Flooding aside, there are a number of events taking place at the Legion in the coming weeks.  Wheels to Meals happens on Apr. 1 and Apr. 15. On Apr. 1, lunch will be home-made chicken nuggets and potato wedges with a salad on the side and dessert pizza.

The menu for Apr. 15 is yet to be decided, but I'm sure you’ll find out if you attend on Apr. 1.

Numbers have been down at the luncheons and the organizers would love to see more in attendance. The meals are open to anyone who wishes to attend. Please contact Betty MacNeil at 902-668-2314 to reserve a spot.

Also plan to attend the delicious Sunday Brunch on Apr. 6 from 11 a.m to 1 p.m. in support of the Legion. The menu will include pancakes with maple syrup, sausages and bacon, scrambled eggs, beans, biscuits, ice cream for dessert and tea or coffee. The cost will be $10 for adults and $5 for children under 12. Enjoy old time music by Heartbeat while you eat. 

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With spring will come the beginning of construction on the new bridge in Great Village. I spoke recently with Chris Verge, project engineer with the Department of Transportation, to find out what’s planned with respect to the new bridge.  

The current bridge has dutifully accommodated traffic through the village for more than 100 years. The new bridge will be considerably different in appearance, so I suggest you take an opportunity to photograph the old one before it goes. Construction is slated to begin in May when the roads reopen. 

The new bridge will be a two-lane affair with side railings and no overhead structure like the current bridge and will be built immediately up steam from the existing crossing. The railings will appear very utilitarian to anyone travelling through by car, but anyone viewing the bridge from Wilsons or down river will see an ornamental facade that should make the bridge an attractive landmark in the village. Only one other bridge of the same design is planned for the province.

The new bridge will have a pedestrian walkway on the north side and the highway will be realigned to accommodate the bridge. Much of the hillside below the Teed property will be removed in the course of construction, but the cenotaph grounds will not be affected. 

The Teed house (formerly the office of Dr. A. Johnson) will be removed as well, although the bridge and its approach will not extend upward to Station Road.

There will not be an off-site detour during construction. Drivers and pedestrians will continue to use the old bridge until the new one is completed so there should be little disruption to traffic. If all goes according to plan, the new bridge will be ready for operation in five to six months.

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On a final note, please be sure to attend the 51st annual auction of the Great Village and District Fire Brigade on April 26, starting at 10 a.m. at the fire hall. The auction promises something for everyone with treasures both new and used, a book table, pantry table and canteen onsite. One of the Brigade’s volunteer members will be happy to collect your donations prior to the event if you call the fire hall at 902-668-2784 and leave a message.

Patti Sharpe is a long-time resident of Great Village and actively involved in various organizations within her community. Send your news to her at sharpep@eastlink.ca.

Organizations: Royal Canadian Legion, Department of Transportation, Teed house

Geographic location: Great Village, Wilsons

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