Column: April 30, 2018

Ball diamonds open Tuesday but sports fields need more time

City of Ottawa ball diamonds will be officially open as of Tuesday, May 1 and all other sports fields will open Tuesday, May 15. Residents are asked to please stay off sports fields and general turf areas at City facilities until they are open. Fields could be damaged if used when they are too wet. As conditions improve, residents, visitors and sports organizations are encouraged to use discretion when deciding to use a ball diamond or field that may be saturated.

The Great Ottawa Outdoors Just Got Better

Ducks Unlimited Canada, the City of Ottawa, the Government of Canada and several private donors have joined forces to ensure that a 178 hectare (440-acres) property, located in the southern portion of the Carp Hills landscape, will remain pristine for wildlife and for people – now, and into the future. This is the largest natural area acquisition with the City of Ottawa since its amalgamation.

The Carp Hills property is a mixture of provincially significant wetlands and associated upland habitats of forest cover and grasslands situated amidst unique Canadian Shield rock formations and surrounded by fertile agricultural lands. The property is adjacent to existing conservation areas creating a natural corridor that supports and connects wildlife habitat.

Carp Hills is renowned for its high biodiversity of flora and fauna, including species at risk like the Blanding’s turtle, a species listed as endangered under the Canada Species at Risk Act (SARA). The area is also a candidate for consideration as an Area of Natural and Scientific Interest provincially.

Ducks Unlimited Canada will manage the land for its natural values with the Friends of the Carp Hills – the organization that is currently managing the adjacent Crazy Horse Trail, a popular community destination for hiking and cross country skiing.

The property will continue to be accessible for low-impact, public recreational use. In fact,
the public is encouraged to be part of the process! A Town Hall, where local residents and other interested individuals can come out and learn more about their new neighbours and provide input on plans for the property, is scheduled for May 9, 2018, 7pm at Carp Memorial Hall. More details to follow.

Volunteers needed for Doors Open Ottawa

Doors Open Ottawa is happening June 2 and 3. Organizers are currently recruiting volunteers 14 years of age and older who enjoy working with the public. For more information visit and to apply, visit or contact Daniele Hamonic at