Bruce Men’s Shed Continues to Support Local Community

Photo: Mike Mason of Wiarton Rotary with two of the Cornhole boards made by Bruce Men’s Shed for the Wiarton Homecoming Festival on the August long weekend.

‘Somewhere to go, Something to do, Someone to talk to’

Media Release, Bruce Men’s Shed

This month I discovered something new: Permaculture Food Forests. I’m invited to attend the June 20th Open House & Ribbon Cutting for Wiarton’s first Community Food Forest, located at Isaac & Charles Streets, behind The Salvation Army. The Forest was designed by kids, assisted by experienced gardeners, under the guidance of Julie Lamberts of By The Bluffs Native Plants Nursery. Once mature, the Food Forest will consist of fruiting and nut-bearing trees, bushes and edible perennials. What was once a patch of unproductive lawn has become a sustainable and highly productive source of food for the community.

Over the course of this school year, these volunteers (young and not-so-young) met after school on the 3rd Thursday each month to learn, plan, design, and then plant. Each team designed a guild; a fruit tree surrounded by supporting plants. Each plant was chosen for a particular function: nitrogen fixing, pest deterrence, pollinator attractant throughout the growing season, or maybe a “dynamic accumulator”. They each play a supporting role for a healthy natural ecosystem. The guilds in this Food Forest are 12 feet in diameter – that’s the mature dripline of the dwarf fruit tree specimens planted. And this Food Forest design consists of 5 fruit tree guilds, a hedgerow of hazelnut bushes, 2 paw paw trees as the eventual over story to the north, and 3 elderberry bushes for their lushness and beautiful flowers, then medicinal berries.

The Opening Ceremony is June 20th , after school, at 3:30 p.m. If you’re interested to attend and tour this new Community Food Forest, contact

Bruce Men’s Shed recently delivered a number of finished cornhole boards that will be used at the Cornhole Tournament to be held at the Wiarton Homecoming Festival on the August long weekend. Next we will be building bird houses that can be installed at the Food Forest above, as well as ready-to-assemble birdhouse kits for the Canada Day celebration at Pike Bay beach (more on this next time).

If you visit the Stokes Bay Community Centre you will see some progress on the kitchen cabinet facelift. The cabinet doors were cleaned up offsite, spray painted and returned where new hardware will be installed.

We are also working on a cardboard boat for the Chi-Cheemaun festival on June 15. Several members are using space donated to us to use this summer. Piles of cardboard were gathered to brainstorm the design and construction.

Photo: Ross and Michael constructing the cardboard boat they’ll race at the annual Chi-Cheemaun Weekend Cardboard Boat Races June 15th.

Every Monday morning we meet for coffee from 9-11 a.m., and our monthly meetings are the third Saturday morning of the month. Both are held at Canadian Legion Branch 202 on Highway 6 just north of Ferndale. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. All are welcome. If you would like further information on how to get involved with the Men’s Shed movement, please don’t hesitate to contact the Bruce Men’s Shed at or call Gerry at (519) 793-3005.