All levels of government will need to work with conservation officials across Southwestern Ontario to address the region’s deepening flooding fears, a much-anticipated provincial report states.Doug McNeil, appointed a government adviser on the issue in July, completed an independent review of flood management and flooding events this year in Ontario. His 66-recommendation report was made public Thursday.Among the recommendations is McNeil’s call for the Essex Region and Lower Thames Valley conservation authorities to work with federal and municipal officials “to address the existing and expected impacts” of flooding in Chatham-Kent, Windsor-Essex and Pelee Island due in large part to the toll of “erosion hazards and climate change on Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River.”Richard Wyma is the general manager of the Essex Region conservation authority. He participated in a feedback session when McNeil came to London earlier this year for information about the challenges specific to flooding in Southwestern Ontario.“Our issues are different from everywhere else. Our issues are dealing with record-high water levels” in Lake Erie, Lake St. Clair and the Detroit River, Wyma said.Story continues belowThis advertisement has not loaded yet,but your article continues below.All three experienced water levels 10 to 15 centimetres higher than previous all-time record highs. “There’s basically no room for water to go,” he said. “Our water levels are likely going to continue to be high next year.”At the same time, Wyma says he’s pleased with the “comprehensive” nature of the report. And the fact the Doug Ford Tories touted McNeil’s findings.Localized flooding in a few front yards, but as of now the road still remains open to traffic. #ckont pic.twitter.com/ApXISyTnBP— Trevor Terfloth (@DailyNewsTT) November 27, 2019“They released the report in full. That’s a good indication right there that (the government wants) to address flooding. That’s an indication that they want to make sure there’s an openness and transparency,” he said.Wyma also applauded McNeil for not shying away from the contentious topic of the day: “Importantly, the report talks about the impacts associated with climate change.”In a section on Southwestern Ontario shoreline erosion in the 156-page document, McNeil writes that “Landowners who thought they were 100 years away from erosion hazards might now only be 50 years away, and significant lengths of municipal infrastructure (roads and utilities) are at risk of failure.”“The safety of the public and the protection of our communities is our No. 1 priority,” John Yakabuski, Ontario’s minister of natural resources and forestry, said in a statement that accompanied McNeil’s findings.“After last spring’s flooding, we recognized that we needed an external perspective on the current roles and responsibilities of the governments, agencies and organizations involved in flood management, someone who could provide independent advice on improvements we can make.”In his review, McNeil said this year’s record flooding in many parts of the province was caused by a combination of weather conditions, including a colder-than-average winter and spring, deeper-than-average snowpack, lack of significant winter thaw, rapid snow melt and significant spring rain.He found nothing pointed to human error or the negligent operation of water-control structures as the cause of the flooding, and the government and its partners were effective at reducing and mitigating flood risks.The government’s statements connected to the report repeated the word “resiliency.” “To me, it’s about a region or a landscape or a watershed dealing with impacts,” and specifically with the impacts of climate change, Wyma said.He said there was no dollar amount for flood-prevention measures attached to the report. Nothing in the report was surprising, Wyma says, but “it did reaffirm things that we’ve been seeing.”Other recommendations call on the province to:Review the funding formula for the eligibility of municipalities under the Municipal Disaster Recovery Assistance program Continue the dialogue with the Insurance Bureau of Canada and the federal government on the steps needed to make flood insurance available to more Ontario residents. Update the flood forecasting and warning guidelines and provide clarity on roles and responsibilities of different organizations Consider adopting legislation that will require flood-risk properties to be identified in some way that is publicly accessible, at the very least on the property title, so prospective buyers are aware.
Share This!Last week, we presented this #AskIt —My favorite special event at Epcot is…Without a doubt, people are passionate about special events at Epcot. For many, it was difficult to choose just one. For others, there was one that drew large amounts of vitriol. With more than 800 votes in, here’s the results (in order from least to greatest).Festival of the Arts (6%)Holidays Around the World (19%)Flower and Garden (32%)Food and Wine (43%)Festival of the ArtsI’m going to go out on a limb and say that, in the likely event that Festival of the Arts returns for many more years, Festival of the Arts will be giving Flower and Garden a run for its money, if not nipping at the heels of Food and Wine. It has the best of so many festivals–spectacular food booths, engaging entertainment, informative workshops, unique displays, and then adds Broadway musical performances, interactive art experiences (like the paint-by-number mural), and artists throughout the park making works of art as you watch and willing to answer questions about their technique. I truly believe that the only reason this didn’t score higher in the poll is that the festival is so new that many people haven’t had a chance to experience it. When they do, however, it will quickly become a favorite festival.Holidays Around the WorldAnyone else think that the main reason for Holidays Around the World to score near the bottom is because they got rid of Lights of Winter? Anyone? Just me? Okay then. Moving on.There’s a lot to love about Holidays Around the World. Although the food offerings don’t wow people much, especially coming right after Food and Wine, there are special holiday foods available. The Holiday Tag at the end of Illuminations is a glorious way to make sure that any dental fillings you have are securely affixed in your mouth (or provide easy removal for loose ones) as the show celebrates Peace on Earth with a massive amount of peace-disrupting fireworks. The Holiday Storytellers are always favorites, and the overall décor throughout the park really helps build the holiday spirit. The big down side–the event ends with the highest crowd levels of the year.Flower and GardenFlower and Garden is known in my house as Epcot’s Celebration of Plenty of Pollen (sponsored by Claritin). Everything is in bloom all around Epcot. Beautiful, yes. Even seen through the misty glaze of itchy eyes.In all seriousness, however, Epcot never looks finer than it does during Flower and Garden. The color everywhere brings oohs and aahs around every turn. Kids love the outdoor playgrounds, people of all ages love the Garden Rocks concert series, photographers love the pops of color throughout the park, and I personally think many of the food offerings at Flower and Garden are better than comparable foods at Food and Wine. From the educational side, there are a variety of presentations on everything you can think of relating to plants, farming, and backyard gardening. It was also noted by several people that there are fewer drunks at Flower and Garden than at Food and Wine–a huge plus in many people’s books.Food and WineBut the winner is Food and Wine, which has two very popular aspects–food and wine (and beer and other potent potables). Certainly, there’s more to Food and Wine, like the Party for the Senses evenings, many food and beverage seminars, the Hide and Squeak scavenger hunt, and the popular Eat to the Beat concert series. Overall, the food and drinks are the major draws. Over the years, Food and Wine has become a victim of its own success. Saturday nights especially have become slammed, and it is very common to see groups of people wearing shirts extolling the joys of drinking to excess. If you frequent Food and Wine in the evenings, you are likely at some point to witness someone falling down drunk, urinating in public, or vomiting. And although people do rightly point out that things like that do happen at other times, among many parent groups, the whispered word is don’t take your kids to Epcot on Saturday nights in the fall. Food and Wine was the only event that people specifically mentioned that they now loathe because of the actions of a few out-of-control guests. Nevertheless, it is an event worth attending and still ranks as the most popular one in Epcot’s festival calendar. No surprise it won the poll here, too.And now it is time for a change of pace. I just got off my first trip on the Disney Wonder (which I’ll be sharing details about in tomorrow’s Best Week Ever). Because my mind is still thinking back to my cruise, this week’s #AskIt is:Which Disney Cruise Line ship is your favorite?Disney MagicDisney WonderDisney DreamDisney FantasyThe poll is open on Twitter, or you can leave your comments here or on Facebook. For me, I think I need more personal experience on each ship to truly be able to decide. Off to peruse for an upcoming cruise I go…did someone say 2018 summer itineraries are out?
Brokish has three hits, RBI for ApachesBy Paul LeckerSports ReporterAUBURNDALE — Athens rallied from a two-run deficit to defeat Auburndale 6-5 in a nonconference softball game Friday at Auburndale High School.Auburndale scored three times in the third inning to take a 5-3 lead before the Bluejays retaliated with three runs in the top of the fifth and held on from there for the victory.Auburndale could only muster four hits, three from Robyn Brokish.Rachael Bolder suffered the loss for the Apaches, allowing the three runs in the fifth.Auburndale will play at the Tigerton Invitational on Saturday.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)Bluejays 6, Apaches 5Athens 201 030 0 – 6 7Auburndale 203 000 0 – 5 4LP: Rachael Bolder.SO: Robyn Brokish (3 inn.) 1, R. Bolder (4 inn.) 0. BB: Brokish 2, R. Bolder 2.Top hitters: AUB, Brokish 3×4, 2B, RBI; Hannah Bolder 2B, RBI; Brooke Anderson 2 runs.Athens statistics not provided.Records: Athens 5-1; Auburndale 0-4.
Regionals begin May 26By Paul LeckerSports ReporterMARSHFIELD — The 2016 WIAA spring baseball tournament field has been set.Regional quarterfinals in Divisions 2, 3, and 4 will be played on Thursday, May 26.Regional semifinals in all four divisions are set for Tuesday, May 31; regional finals in Divisions 2, 3, and 4 are on Wednesday, June 1; and Division 1 regional finals are on Thursday, June 2.Sectionals in all divisions will be Tuesday, June 7, and semifinals and finals played will be at the same site. Winners will move on to the 2016 WIAA State Spring Baseball Tournament at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute on June 14-16.Locally, Marshfield is the No. 7 seed in the Division 1 Sectional 1 field and will host Wisconsin Valley Conference rival Merrill, the 10th seed, in a regional semifinal on May 31. The winner plays at No. 2 Eau Claire North in a regional final on June 2.In Division 3, Stratford, Spencer, and Auburndale are all part of the Sectional 2 bracket.Stratford is the No. 3 seed in the top half of the bracket and will host Colby in a regional quarterfinal on May 26. The winner moves on to play at No. 2 Spencer in a regional semifinal on May 31.In the bottom half of the bracket, Auburndale is the No. 5 seed and will play a regional quarterfinal at No. 4 Weyauwega-Fremont on May 26. The winner plays at No. 1 Stevens Point Pacelli in a regional semifinal on May 31.Marshfield Columbus Catholic is the No. 4 seed in the Division 4 Sectional 2 bracket and will host No. 5 Prentice at Jack Hackman Field on May 26. The winner plays at No. 1 Loyal in a regional semifinal on May 31.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)2016 WIAA State Spring Baseball TournamentDivision 1Sectional 1Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 New Richmond at No. 8 MenomonieNo. 12 Wisconsin Rapids at No. 5 HudsonNo. 11 Superior at No. 6 River FallsNo. 10 Merrill at No. 7 MarshfieldRegional finals, June 2New Richmond-Menomonie winner at No. 1 Eau Claire MemorialHudson-Wisconsin Rapids winner at No. 4 Chippewa FallsSuperior-River Falls winner at No. 3 Stevens PointMarshfield-Merrill winner at No. 2 Eau Claire NorthSectional 4Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Neenah at No. 8 Appleton EastNo. 12 Appleton West at No. 5 ManitowocNo. 11 New London at No. 6 De PereNo. 10 Menasha at No. 7 KaukaunaRegional finals, June 2Neenah-Appleton East winner at No. 1 KimberlyManitowoc-Appleton West winner at No. 4 HortonvilleNew London-De Pere winner at No. 3 West De PereKaukauna-Menasha winner at No. 2 Appleton NorthSectional 2Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 D.C. Everest at No. 8 RhinelanderNo. 12 Green Bay Southwest at No. 5 AntigoNo. 11 Wausau East at No. 6 Green Bay East/WestNo. 10 Ashwaubenon at No. 7 Green Bay Notre DameRegional finals, June 2D.C. Everest-Rhinelander winner at No. 1 Green Bay PrebleAntigo-Green Bay Southwest winner at No. 4 Wausau WestGreen Bay East/West-Wausau East winner at No. 3 PulaskiNotre Dame-Ashwaubenon winner at No. 2 Bay PortSectional 3Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Baraboo at No. 8 HolmenNo. 12 Reedsburg at No. 5 La Crosse CentralNo. 11 Tomah at No. 6 WaunakeeNo. 10 Madison Memorial at No. 7 OnalaskaRegional finals, June 2Holmen-Baraboo winner at No. 1 MiddletonLa Crosse Central-Reedsburg winner at No. 4 Sauk PrairieWaunakee-Tomah winner at No. 3 DeForestOnalaska-Madison Memorial winner at No. 2 La Crosse LoganSectional 5Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Oregon at No. 8 MiltonNo. 12 Elkhorn at No. 5 Janesville ParkerNo. 11 Madison La Follette at No. 6 Madison WestNo. 10 Monona Grove at No. 7 StoughtonRegional finals, June 2Milton-Oregon winner at No. 1 Janesville CraigJanesville Parker-Elkhorn winner at No. 4 Fort AtkinsonMadison West-Madison La Follette winner at No. 3 Beloit MemorialStoughton-Monona Grove winner at No. 2 VeronaSectional 8Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Union Grove at No. 8 WilmotNo. 12 Racine Park at No. 5 Kenosha Bradford/ReutherNo. 11 Racine Case at No. 6 Westosha CentralNo. 10 Lake Geneva Badger at No. 7 Racine HorlickRegional finals, June 2Wilmot-Union Grove winner at No. 1 Kenosha Indian TrailKenosha Bradford/Reuther-Racine Park winner at No. 4 WaterfordWestosha Central-Racine Case winner at No. 3 BurlingtonRacine Horlick-Badger winner at No. 2 Kenosha TremperSectional 6Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Slinger at No. 8 Oshkosh WestNo. 12 Sheboygan South at No. 5 WatertownNo. 11 Sheboygan North at No. 6 Fond du LacNo. 10 Madison East at No. 7 HartfordRegional finals, June 2Oshkosh West-Slinger winner at No. 1 Sun PrairieWatertown-Sheboygan South winner at No. 4 Beaver DamFond du Lac-Sheboygan North winner at No. 3 Oshkosh NorthHartford-Madison East winner at No. 2 OconomowocSectional 7Regional semifinals, May 31No. 9 Milwaukee Bay View/LL at No. 8 Milwaukee Bradley Tech/Carmen SouthNo. 12 Milwaukee Vincent at No. 5 Milwaukee KingNo. 11 Milwaukee Washington/Career/Collegiate at No. 6 Milwaukee SouthNo. 10 Milwaukee Pulaski/Arts/Juneau at No. 7 Milwaukee HamiltonRegional finals, June 2Bay View/LL-Bradley/Carmen South winner at No. 1 Hartland ArrowheadKing-Vincent winner at No. 4 Milwaukee Madison/Samuel Morse/LanguagesWashington/Career/Colleigate-South winner at No. 3 Milwaukee ReaganHamilton-Pulaski/Arts/Juneau winner at No. 2 Milwaukee RiversideDivision 2Sectional 1Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Spooner at No. 4 BarronNo. 6 Northwestern/South Shore at No. 3 HaywardNo. 5 Osceola at No. 4 AmeryNo. 6 Somerset at No. 3 Baldwin-WoodvilleNo. 7 St. Croix Central at No. 2 PrescottNo. 5 Bloomer at No. 4 Black River FallsNo. 6 Sparta at No. 3 Gale-Ettrick-TrempealeauNo. 5 Nekoosa at No. 4 WautomaNo. 6 Adams-Friendship at No. 3 MaustonRegional semifinals, May 31Spooner-Barron winner at No. 1 Rice LakeHayward-Northwestern/South Shore winner at No. 2 AshlandAmery-Osceola winner at No. 1 EllsworthBloomer-Black River Falls winner at No. 1 AltoonaGET-Sparta winner at No. 2 West SalemNekoosa-Wautoma winner at No. 1 Wisconsin DellsMauston-Adams-Friendship winner at No. 2 WestfieldSectional 2Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Medford at No. 4 Wittenberg-BirnamwoodNo. 6 Northland Pines at No. 3 LakelandNo. 5 Peshtigo at No. 4 ClintonvilleNo. 6 Shawano at No. 3 MarinetteNo. 5 Appleton Xavier at No. 4 Little ChuteNo. 6 Wrightstown at No. 3 Fox Valley LutheranNo. 5 Sturgeon Bay at No. 4 DenmarkNo. 6 Chilton at No. 3 ValdersRegional semifinals, May 31Medford-Wittenberg-Birnamwood winner at No. 1 MosineeLakeland-Northland Pines winner at No. 2 TomahawkClintonville-Peshtigo winner at No. 1 SeymourMarinette-Shawano winner at No. 2 Oconto FallsXavier-Little Chute winner at No. 1 WaupacaFox Valley Lutheran-Wrightstown winner at No. 2 FreedomDenmark-Sturgeon Bay winner at No. 1 Luxemburg-CascoValders-Chilton winner at No. 2 Southern DoorSectional 3Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Mount Horeb at No. 4 PlattevilleNo. 6 Richland Center at No. 3 ViroquaNo. 5 Marshall at No. 4 McFarlandNo. 6 Poynette at No. 3 PortageNo. 5 Edgerton at No. 4 Brodhead/JudaNo. 6 Clinton at No. 3 MonroeNo. 5 Delavan-Darien at No. 4 Big FootNo. 6 East Troy at No. 3 Racine Lutheran/Prairie SchoolRegional semifinals, May 31Mount Horeb-Platteville winner at No. 1 River ValleyViroqua-Richland Center winner at No. 2 DodgevilleMcFarland-Marshall winner at No. 1 LodiPortage-Poynette winner at No. 2 Madison EdgewoodEdgerton-Brodhead/Juda winner at No. 1 Beloit TurnerMonroe-Clinton winner at No. 2 EvansvilleBig Foot-Delavan-Darien winner at No. 1 Greendale Martin LutherRacine Lutheran/Prairie School-East Troy winner at No. 2 WhitewaterSectional 4Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Omro at No. 4 BerlinNo. 6 North Fond du Lac at No. 3 WinneconneNo. 5 Watertown Luther Prep at No. 4 LomiraNo. 6 Hustisford/Dodgeland at No. 3 MayvilleNo. 5 Lakeside Lutheran at No. 4 Lake MillsNo. 6 St. John’s Northwest Military Academy at No. 3 Kettle Moraine LutheranNo. 5 Milwaukee St. Thomas More at No. 4 Wisconsin LutheranNo. 6 Milwaukee Messmer at No. 3 University School of MilwaukeeRegional semifinals, May 31Berlin-Omro winner at No. 1 WaupunWinneconne-North Fond du Lac winner at No. 2 RiponLomira-Luther Prep winner at No. 1 ColumbusMayville-Hustisford/Dodgeland winner at No. 2 CampbellsportLake Mills-Lakeside Lutheran winner at No. 1 JeffersonKettle Moraine Lutheran-St. John’s winner at No. 2 Waukesha Catholic MemorialWisconsin Lutheran-St. Thomas More winner at No. 1 Milwaukee LuthearnUniversity School-Messmer winner at No. 2 St. FrancisDivision 3Sectional 1Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Webster at No. 4 CumberlandNo. 6 Luck/Frederic at No. 3 Clayton/Turtle LakeNo. 7 Grantsburg at No. 2 St. Croix FallsNo. 5 Cornell/Lake Holcombe at No. 4 CameronNo. 6 Chetek-Weyerhaesuer at No. 3 LadysmithNo. 5 Glenwood City at No. 4 BoycevilleNo. 6 Colfax at No. 3 Eau Claire RegisNo. 5 Mondovi at No. 4 Stanley-BoydNo. 6 Cadott at No. 3 Fall CreekRegional semifinals, May 31Webster-Cumberland winner at No. 1 UnityCornell/Lake Holcombe-Cameron winner at No. 1 ChequamegonLadysmith-Chetek-Weyerhaesuer winner at No. 2 PhillipsGlenwood City-Boyceville winner at No. 1 Elk MoundRegis-Colfax winner at No. 2 Spring ValleyMondovi-Stanley-Boyd winner at No. 1 DurandFall Creek-Cadott winner at No. 2 Osseo-FairchildSectional 2Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Edgar at No. 4 AbbotsfordNo. 6 Colby at No. 3 StratfordNo. 5 Auburndale at No. 4 Weyauwega-FremontNo. 6 Manawa at No. 3 Iola-ScandinaviaNo. 5 Crivitz at No. 4 Wabeno/LaonaNo. 6 Gillett/Suring at No. 3 CrandonNo. 5 Shiocton at No. 4 ReedsvilleNo. 6 Menominee Indian at No. 3 BrillionRegional semifinals, May 31Edgar-Abbotsford winner at No. 1 MarathonStratford-Colby winner at No. 2 SpencerAuburndale-Weyauwega-Fremont winner at No. 1 Stevens Point PacelliIola-Scandinavia-Manawa winner at No. 2 AmherstWabeno/Laona winner at No. 1 ColemanCrandon-Gillett/Suring winner at No. 2 OcontoShiocton-Reedsville winner at No. 1 Neenah St. Mary CatholicBrillion-Menominee Indian winner at No. 2 BonduelSectional 3Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Melrose-Mindoro at No. 4 NeillsvilleNo. 6 Lincoln at No. 3 WhitehallNo. 5 Onalaska Luther at No. 4 NecedahNo. 6 Boscobel at No. 3 BrookwoodNo. 5 Mineral Point at No. 4 Iowa-GrantNo. 6 Cuba City at No. 3 LancasterNo. 5 Parkview at No. 4 WaterlooNo. 6 Belleville at No. 3 Wisconsin HeightsNo. 7 New Glarus at No. 2 DeerfieldRegional semifinals, May 31Melrose-Mindoro-Neillsville winner at No. 1 Cochrane-Fountain CityWhitehall-Lincoln winner at No. 2 ArcadiaLuther-Necedah winner at No. 1 La Crosse AquinasBrookwood-Boscobel winner at No. 2 WestbyIowa-Grant-Mineral Point winner at No. 1 Prairie du ChienLancaster-Cuba City winner at No. 2 DarlingtonParkview-Waterloo winner at No. 1 CambridgeSectional 4Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Manitowoc Lutheran at No. 4 MishicotNo. 6 Kewaunee at No. 3 AlgomaNo. 5 Montello at No. 4 PardeevilleNo. 6 Green Lake/Princeton at No. 3 LaconiaNo. 5 Whitefish Bay Dominican at No. 4 Brookfield AcademyNo. 6 Horicon at No. 3 Fond du Lac St. Mary’s SpringsNo. 5 Racine St. Catherine’s at No. 4 Kenosha Christian LifeNo. 6 Milwaukee Heritage Christian/Trinity Academy at No. 3 Kenosha St. JosephRegional semifinals, May 31Manitowoc Lutheran-Mishicot winner at No. 1 Gibraltar/Washington IslandAlgoma-Kewaunee winner at No. 2 Manitowoc RoncalliMontello-Pardeeville winner at No. 1 MarkesanLaconia-Green Lake/Princeton winner at No. 2 Oshkosh Lourdes/Valley ChristianBrookfield Academy-Dominican winner at No. 1 Lake Country LutheranSt. Mary’s Springs-Horicon winner at No. 2 Winnebago LutheranSt. Catherine’s-Christian Life winner at No. 1 Palmyra-EagleSt. Joseph-Heritage/Trinity winner at No. 2 Shoreland LutheranDivision 4Sectional 1Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Washburn at No. 4 MellenNo. 6 Bayfield at No. 3 Butternut/MercerNo. 5 Elmwood at No. 4 Clear LakeNo. 6 Plum City at No. 3 Pepin/AlmaNo. 5 Bruce at No. 4 GreenwoodNo. 6 Gilman at No. 3 Owen-WitheeRegional semifinals, May 31Mellen-Washburn winner at No. 1 HurleyButternut/Mercer-Bayfield winner at No. 2 DrummondElmwood-Clear Lake winner at No. 1 Eau Claire Immanuel LutheranPepin/Alma-Plum City winner at No. 2 Prairie FarmBruce-Greenwood winner at No. 1 Chippewa Falls McDonellOwen-Withee-Gilman winner at No. 2 ThorpSectional 2Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Prentice at No. 4 Marshfield Columbus CatholicNo. 6 Northland Lutheran/Wisconsin Valley Lutheran at No. 3 AthensNo. 7 Granton at No. 2 Rib LakeNo. 5 Wisconsin Rapids Assumption at No. 4 TigertonNo. 6 Wausau Newman Catholic at No. 3 Port EdwardsNo. 7 Marion at No. 2 RosholtNo. 5 Pembine/Goodman at No. 4 Three LakesNo. 6 Phelps at No. 3 ElchoNo. 5 St. Thomas Aquinas/Lena at No. 4 SevastopolNo. 6 White Lake at No. 3 BowlerRegional semifinals, May 31Prentice-Columbus Catholic winner at No. 1 LoyalTigerton-Assumption winner at No. 1 PittsvillePembine/Goodman-Three Lakes winner at No. 1 NiagaraElcho-Phelps winner at No. 2 FlorenceSt. Thomas Aquinas/Lena-Sevastopol winner at No. 1 WausaukeeBowler-White Lake winner at No. 2 GreshamSectional 3Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Blair-Taylor at No. 4 CashtonNo. 6 Augusta at No. 3 Eleva-StrumNo. 5 New Lisbon at No. 4 Wonewoc-CenterNo. 6 Royall at No. 3 La FargeNo. 5 Kickapoo at No. 4 SenecaNo. 6 North Crawford at No. 3 De SotoNo. 5 River Ridge at No. 4 CassvilleNo. 6 Wauzeka-Steuben at No. 3 PotosiRegional semifinals, May 31Blair-Taylor-Cashton winner at No. 1 Independence/GilmantonEleva-Strum-Augusta winner at No. 2 BangorNew Lisbon-Wonewoc-Center winner at No. 1 HillsboroLa Farge-Royall winner at No. 2 WestonKickapoo-Seneca winner at No. 1 IthacaDe Soto-North Crawford winner at No. 2 RiverdaleRiver Ridge-Cassville winner at No. 1 FennimorePotosi-Wauzeka Steuben winner at No. 2 HighlandSectional 4Regional quarterfinals, May 26No. 5 Hilbert/Stockbridge at No. 4 Wild RoseNo. 6 Tri-County at No. 3 OakfieldNo. 5 Fall River at No. 4 RandolphNo. 6 Cambria-Friesland at No. 3 RioNo. 5 Southwestern at No. 4 ArgyleNo. 6 Black Hawk at No. 3 Shullsburg/BentonNo. 5 Monticello at No. 4 AlbanyNo. 6 Faith Christian at No. 3 Burlington Catholic CentralRegional semifinals, May 31Hilbert/Stockbridge-Wild Rose winner at No. 1 Almond-BancroftOakfield-Tri-County winner at No. 2 Green Bay NEW LutheranFall River-Randolph winner at No. 1 Johnson CreekRio-Cambria-Friesland winner at No. 2 Living Word LutheranSouthwestern-Argyle winner at No. 1 PecatonicaShullsburg/Benton-Black Hawk winner at No. 2 BelmontMonticello-Albany winner at No. 1 BarneveldCatholic Central-Faith Christian winner at No. 2 Williams Bay
10 April 2011Kevin Davie, a 50-something award-winning journalist with the Mail & Guardian, is just over a week into a ride that is not for the faint-hearted: he’s cycling from Beit Bridge on the Zimbabwe border to Cape Point on Africa’s southern tip, most of it off-road, which adds up to a distance of almost 4 000 kilometres.“It’s trail riding,” explains Davie, who then talks about the Freedom Trail as an example of this. Established in 2003, South Africa’s Freedom Trail covers 2 300 kilometres, from Pietermaritzburg in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands to Paarl in the Western Cape.It takes in some spectacular regions of South Africa, most of which are off the beaten path. It’s a route that Davie has ridden. It is also much like the trail Davie is undertaking, a route he calls “the ganna”, which, in fact, includes vast parts of the Freedom Trail.GannalandHe chose the name after holidaying near Gannaland, the Karoo farm made famous by Olive Schreiner in her Story of an African Farm.Davie, however, says his journey is more like the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route that follows the Rockey Mountains from Banff in Alberta, Canada to Antelope Wells in New Mexico, USA, covering a distance of just over 4 400 kilometres.On the Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, the idea is to keep the percentage of tarred roads to below 20%. Davie’s aim on “the ganna” is to keep it below 10%.“It’s about getting away from organised racing,” says Davie. “It’s about learning about the country, culture and geology.Blog“While it is like the Rockeys, ‘the ganna’ has far greater diversity and biodiversity,” Davie explains with a sense of wonderment in his voice. “Have you looked at the photo of the Bewaarkloof on the blog [gannagreatride.wordpress.com]?” he asks.I have, and with a little imagination (it’s requires a little not being there) I get a sense of why he is so blown away by the countryside. It’s an expression he uses more than once: “blown away”.He’s on Twitter too, leaving brief messages about his experiences. The Mail & Guardian has a Special Report devoted to his ride as well.He explains how he is living along the way. “It’s a self-contained style of riding, no support, a bivvy tent, and a sleeping bag.”PeopleHe continues: “People relate to you in a different way when you’re alone. They see your vulnerability and reach out. You take whatever is thrown at you.”I was curious about how he was progressing, because his stated aim was to cover 130 kilometres a day, a figure, I told him, I thought was optimistic. “I’m nowhere near that,” admitted Davie, adding that he had covered about 700 kilometres in seven days.There have also frequently been times when he has been forced to walk. At its worst, he recalled covering only 10 kilometres in five hours in tough, thorny conditions. And some of these areas he had previously visited! They have changed remarkably with the seasons.Davie hasn’t been alone throughout his trip. He has been joined by mountain bikers, some of whom have heard of his ride through word of mouth.KitWhen he set out, he carried a backpack and his kit weighed in at 9.5 kilograms, which included food and a cooker. The cooker, along with noodles, are no longer a part of his gear. He has got rid of them. “It’s about a third lighter,” he said of his kit, before explaining how he is eating along the route.It’s hardly romantic, but it is working; “Coke,” says Davie, “is full of sugar,” and that has become an important part of his diet. Sometimes he orders a meal or eats a hamburger, it depends where he is.I want to know what has struck him most, as a native Johannesburger, being out in the country, far removed from the rush of city life.‘Incredible graciousness’“The incredible graciousness of the people,” he answers without hesitation, and the word “graciousness” comes up time and again, spoken with a sense of awe and deep gratefulness. “Great experiences,” he continues. “It’s overwhelming.”Davie is a man who loves the outdoors. He is a veteran of the Dusi Canoe Marathon, a “Dusi rat” who has completed the taxing event 22 times. He knows mountains and valleys. Yet, he says: “I am blown away permanently by the beauty of the mountains, the people … It’s endlessly like that.”Has he had any concerns about his safety? “No,” is the firm answer, and Davie suggests that it is the natural beauty of the land that has an affect on the people. “Violence is more an urban thing.”Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material
A dog is trained under Mechem’s Explosives and Drug Detection System at a facility in Afghanistan. A trainee is taught landmine detection atMechem’s training facility in Pretoria. (Images: Mechem) MEDIA CONTACTS • Hannes Slabbert Mechem: Manager Dog Business Unit +27 12 640 3000 / +27 12 664 3931 RELATED ARTICLES • Lean times for drug traffickers • Musos pitch in to save rhinos • Phone tool to boost drug-free sport • Rhinos to get revenge on poachersRay Maota Ray MaotaSouth African-trained sniffer dogs have uncovered a major drug smuggling ring in the west African country of Benin. The dogs alerted their handlers, who discovered 7kg of heroin hidden inside a consignment of aircraft parts.The parts and bolts had to be taken apart and sawed open to reveal the heroin. The dogs were trained by Mechem, a subsidiary of Denel, South Africa’s arms manufacturer.Ashley Williams, Mechem’s chief executive, said: “Mechem has a contract to provide 40 sniffer dogs and train dog handlers for the government of Benin. The dogs are deployed at ports and airfields to counter the growing trade of drugs and illicit substances in the region.”The company landed the contract after Thomas Boni Yayi, the president of Benin, visited the Mechem training facility in Lyttleton, in Pretoria, in 2011 and was impressed by the extraordinary skills of the dogs and their handlers.Yayi identified drug trafficking as one of the most pressing challenges facing the African continent when he was elected the president of the African Union in January 2012.How the dogs detect contrabandMechem has developed a unique system that combines modern technology with the canines’ abilities to search for and uncover smuggled substances.Known as the Mechem Explosives and Drug Detection System, it involves collecting air samples from suspected containers and vehicles, and taking them to the dogs in a controlled environment.By sniffing the air samples, the trained dogs are able to confirm if there indeed is any contraband. From this evidence, investigators then physically inspect the scenes.This technology was used successfully by the South African Defence Force between 1975 and 1988; over the past decade it has been developed further. It is now accredited by the United Nations for use in landmine reduction, according to Mechem’s website.Williams said: “The value of detection dogs in the war on drugs was again confirmed. The contraband was well hidden inside metal parts and would not have been uncovered by physical inspection.”This system is used to find drugs and other smuggled contraband such as rhino horn, ivory and abalone.Mechem and rhino poachingMechem is also involved in the fight against rhino poaching, and has placed its resources at the disposal of anti-poaching initiatives.Talib Sadik, Denel’s chief executive, said: “We have some of the most sophisticated technology in the world and at least three of our business entities can help stop rhino poaching – Mechem, for their sniffer dogs; Carl Zeiss Optronics, for its powerful ‘eye-in-the-sky’ technology; and Denel Dynamics, for their unmanned aerial vehicles.”Mechem supplies dogs to private game reserves and other entities, according to Dr Hannes Slabbert, the veterinary ethnologist at the company’s training facility. Slabbert said: “We are very proud of our track record, our training and expertise in the field.”Rhino poaching is rife in Southern Africa. Already this year, 52 animals have been killed for their precious horns in South Africa, according to SANParks. The agency, South African National Parks or SANParks, manages a system of national parks that represents the indigenous fauna, flora, landscapes and cultural heritage of the country.Eye in the skyCarl Zeiss Optronics was one of the first companies in the defence industry to launch an aircraft especially designed for day and night operations in border control, nature conservation and anti-poaching operations.The aircraft is a Pacific Aerospace P-750 XSTOL fitted with a LEO-II or LEO-III airborne stabilised observation system and other equipment that enables recording of real-time, live streaming video.It has a short take-off and landing ability, while its low-speed gliding capabilities enable it to cover vast areas, economically. In this way, it provides excellent airborne video footage of poachers.“The aircraft will not easily alert poachers to its presence and its observation mission,” said Albert du Toit, the executive manager of marketing and sales at Carl Zeiss Optronics.
Image: Starlux Taiwanese full-service contender Starlux is pulling out all the stops as it gears up for launch early next year in the crowded Asian market.The carrier will launch January 23 using Airbus A321neo aircraft with plans to initially fly to Macau, Vietnam’s Da Nang and Malaysia’s Penang.The first of 10 A321neos will be delivered at the end of October and the airline expects to have three flying by the time it launches.READ: ANA asks passengers to vote on in-flight mealsBut it has aspirations beyond the region and in March signed a firm order for 12 A350-1000s and five A350-900s with plans to deploy the aircraft on services from Tapei to destinations in the Asia-pacific, Europe and North America.Founder and chairman K. W. Chang has said he wants the new airline to be one of the best in the world and initial indications are that the former EVA Air chairman is going to give it a good shot.Those indications came at a recent event to unveil the airline’s new uniform and cabin design. It is also adopting the olfactory strategy of Cathay Pacific by formulating its own fragrance for use in lounges and on aircraft.The new uniforms.Called “Home in the Air” it is apparently designed to evoke the tranquillity of the home with “the expanse of the galaxy’’.The uniform collection for cabin and ground crews was designed by renowned Taiwan fashion designer Sean Yin, who said he wanted to combine a classical airline look with modern touches “to create chic but practical fashions”.The Starlux website says the uniforms “combine fashion elements from the 40s and 50s with space-age accents, employing natural gold and space silver tones to simultaneously evoke elegance and state-of-the-art appointments.”An interesting addition for pilots, engineering, ground handling and maintenance staff badges with the slogan “Safety is our attitude”.For those less concerned with galactic scents and what the cabin crew is wearing, there’s good news about seating.The cabin interior as well as the seating in the A321neos has been designed by BMW Group Designworks and features ultra-thin seatbacks in economy to boost legroom and lie-flat comfort in business.The economy seating.The airline says the economy class seating features bright and natural colors and every seat will be equipped with a high-quality leather headrest.“Passengers will be able to enjoy restful sleep without bringing their own neck pillows,’’ it promises.Each seat has a 10.1-inch 720p screen with USB ports and single earphone ports to allow passengers to plug in their own cans.Starlux will be also providing free Wi-Fi with basic access.The airline describes business class as “comparatively more settled and tranquil, employing relatively dark and elegant colors to evoke the majesty of the galaxy.”This includes classical grey and rose gold cushions and privacy dividers combined BMW Cashmere Silver that adds “a futuristic, hi-tech touch to the back shells”Business passengers get a sharper screen with a 15.6-inch 1080p unit and the seat transforms into an 82-inch fully flatbed.Business class
As our nation commemorates Veterans Day this year let us consider how your company could improve how it recruits and hires military veterans. Trained, Trainable, and Able to Train Others: The military has a culture of continuous training which means that the veterans you hire will be able to learn material quickly and apply this knowledge immediately. This blog will help you overcome such challenges by describing the skills and characteristics that many veterans can bring to your organization and outlining some best practices and resources that your company can use to recruit and hire these veterans. Advanced Beyond Their Civilian Peers: Most service members have held responsibilities in their military careers that far surpass civilian peers of comparable ages so that a 25 year-old sergeant will have been directly responsible for millions of dollars in equipment. Here are some characteristics and highly-valued skills civilian employers can expect to find in veteran job candidates: Essential Non-Technical Skills and Characteristics: In addition to the previously listed assets, veterans also possess a variety of essential non-technical skills and characteristics. Surveys of business leaders have shown these skills to be highly desired in the civilian workforce and often not seen in non-veteran job candidates. A brief description of these skills is available here. According to a recent 2016 SHRM survey, 68% of HR professionals report that they are facing challenging recruiting conditions in the current market and 84% saw a skills shortage in the previous year. HR professionals also report that although their companies are interested in hiring military veterans to fill their human capital needs, they have difficulties finding veterans and translating their military experiences into civilian terms. Technical Skills: Ninety percent of the military’s occupations are directly transferable to civilian occupations. When service members leave the military, your company can take immediate advantage of their technical training and expertise. For recommendations on how to extract these skills, click here. Although your veteran applicants may possess these essential skills and characteristics, they may not be listed in a resume or appear in their answers to interview questions. This may happen because many service members are routinely exposed to other service members with similar skills, so they may not realize how valuable or unusual their skills are in the civilian workforce. Even if they recognize these qualities in themselves, some veterans may under-value their own experiences and proficiency levels in these areas, or relate them only to the military environment. Integrity: Integrity, determination, and strong character are core values in the military. Once instilled and developed in a service member, these elements usually remain part of a veteran’s character for the rest of his or her life. Highly Qualified: The military has strict entry criteria (which 71% of the American population cannot meet), so the fact that a veteran was accepted into the military in the first place is a sign of that individual’s quality. Additionally, all service members must go thorough background checks, maintain security clearances, and regularly pass drug tests. One reason companies have limited success in hiring veterans is they approach it as a patriotic cause, or a way to thank or pay back the veteran, rather than a talent strategy aligned with business needs. As an alternate approach, frame hiring veterans as a means to directly impact your organization’s bottom line and as a competitive advantage that will give you access to a rare and valuable pool of talent. Understand specifically how veterans’ skills can match your organization’s needs, and then develop your strategy to secure this human capital. And click here for resources that can help you with your veteran hiring.
Doug Merritt, CEO of Splunk, said that “I think it’s imperative that human beings understand that there is economic opportunity in your data. But for government to tax corporations and try to give it back to people, I think that would actually darken the clouds and not open up the sky. What the government can do is set up regulatory frameworks and consequences for non-adherence. What I’d like to see within those frameworks is something in there about how I can broker my data. I think we all should expect that.” Cindy Provin, SVP Entrust Datacard and General Manager nCipher Security, said that “what’s clear is that businesses are facing increased pressure to understand exactly how data is protected at every point during its lifecycle, in order to assess the vulnerabilities in their systems and processes. While it’s often challenging for businesses to take a holistic view of data protection, especially when multiple sources and technologies are involved, it’s necessary from a legal, financial, and frankly reputational, standpoint.” The GDPR has influenced the thinking of many states in the US to implement regulations around data privacy protections. California signed into law the California Consumer Privacy Act, a GDPR-like privacy law. Alabama passed a law that imposes penalties on businesses that collect personal information without authorization. Other states like Vermont, Virginia, Oregon and Louisiana have put into law privacy laws. Rob Perry, vice president at ASG Technologies, said that “the most impressive accomplishment of GDPR has been its role in kick-starting the data privacy awareness revolution. From the introduction of the California Consumer Privacy Act to the reconsideration of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, the first year of the GDPR put the wheels in motion to create a globally safe, secure data landscape.” GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation, the EU data protection and privacy law has been in effect for more than one year. What is the likelihood that a similar law would be enacted in the United States? Some are encouraging the federal government to take a bigger role. State-by-state regulations makes it very difficult for businesses to stay abreast of privacy requirements. Julie Brill, Microsoft’s corporate VP and deputy general counsel, said that “laws currently on the books are simply not strong enough to enable the FTC to protect privacy effectively in today’s complex digital economy. Now it is time for Congress to take inspiration from the rest of the world and enact federal legislation that extends the privacy protections in GDPR to citizens in the United States
Source: Retrosheet 2001September3619-13 2012October3728-21 SeasonMonthGamesScoredAllowedDifference 42019Red Sox153942019Red Sox.270 If the Boston Red Sox harbored any hopes of returning to the playoffs after last year’s magical World Series run, they knew they’d need to make a very strong push over the regular season’s last couple of months. Boston entered the final week of July running eight games behind in the American League East race, though it had just taken five of six games against the division-rival Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees and were scheduled to play 25 of their final 56 contests against AL East opponents. The Red Sox would have plenty of chances, and the FiveThirtyEight model gave them essentially a coin flip’s probability of making the postseason as at least a wild card.But a weekend massacre at the hands of the Yankees has all but destroyed Boston’s playoff hopes. After New York swept the four-game series (which included a pair of losses in a double-header Saturday), the Red Sox are down to a mere 8 percent chance of getting back to the postseason, with basically no hope of winning the division. As the recriminations begin to fly for Boston’s lifeless title defense, we ask: What has happened to leave a team so good on paper sitting on the outside of the playoffs looking in?We knew the Red Sox would have trouble replicating some aspects of that charmed 2018 run. After a season in which few things didn’t go according to plan, regression to the mean loomed large. But our preseason predictions still called for Boston to win 95 games, with a 76 percent chance of making the playoffs despite tough division competition in the Yankees and the Rays. Even the most pessimistic of Sox observers wouldn’t have thought Boston’s playoff odds would dip so low by the beginning of August.What’s interesting is that, by most advanced measures, the defending champs have once again been one of baseball’s best teams in 2019. The Sox still rank eighth in our Elo ratings, seventh in total wins above replacement1Mixing FanGraphs’ and Baseball-Reference.com’s WAR versions using our JEFFBAGWELL metric. per game and sixth in the differential between StatCast’s expected wOBA for and against. They have the talent to stand right next to the Yankees, Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers2All teams Boston dispatched in last year’s playoffs, by the way. as World Series front-runners.In fact, on a purely statistical level, these 2019 Red Sox have been far from the most disappointing team in baseball thus far. Last year, Boston’s total team WAR ranked third in MLB, so it has fallen only four slots as compared with its World Series season — only the seventh-biggest drop-off in baseball this year. (In this regard, a better candidate for “most disappointing team” might be the Milwaukee Brewers, whose top players have mostly returned and have mostly played worse3With the notable exception of outfielder Christian Yelich, who won the MVP in 2018 and is somehow playing even better this season. in 2019.)Although Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez have lost some shine from their dueling MVP campaigns of a year ago, and putative ace Chris Sale is on pace for his worst season by WAR in eight years, other breakouts have attempted to make up the difference. For example, Xander Bogaerts has continued his ascent to become a borderline MVP-level shortstop this year. The 26-year-old is tracking for 6.4 WAR by season’s end, thanks in large part to vastly improved discipline at the plate. Meanwhile, 22-year-old third baseman Rafael Devers has bounced back from a mediocre 2018 season (0.5 WAR) to play at a 5.9-WAR pace (per 162 games) thus far. And catcher Christian Vazquez has also jumped at the chance to be a regular starter behind the plate, producing at a career-high 3-WAR pace this year.Red Sox pitching has been a hot mess at times. Beyond Sale’s uncharacteristic problems — his ERA-minus4A park-adjusted index of earned run average relative to the league, where 100 is average and lower numbers are better. of 97 is essentially that of an average pitcher, easily the worst mark of his career — fellow starter Rick Porcello has struggled (115 ERA-minus), 2018 postseason hero Nathan Eovaldi has barely played (26⅔ innings), and the team has gotten practically nothing out of the back end of the rotation. The result has been a staffwide drop from third in pitching WAR (and sixth when looking at starters only) in 2018 to 14th this season (and 15th among starters only).But these individual efforts explain only a portion of Boston’s 2019 downturn. Collectively, the Red Sox have not played to the sum of their parts, either in terms of their talent or their ability to convert personal statistics into victories. The negative gap between the record we would predict from Boston’s WAR (65-51) and its actual mark (60-56) is tied with that of the Kansas City Royals for the third-largest in baseball. Red Sox hitters have the fifth-worst “clutch” score in the league, according to FanGraphs, and their pitchers are sixth-worst — including dead last among starters. (Clutch measures the difference in a team’s or player’s performance during high-leverage moments.) After a postseason in which Boston pushed all the right buttons during important moments, that ability has deserted them this year.That was on display over the weekend, when Boston went 3-for-19 with runners in scoring position against the Yankees and mustered zero runs (and only two hits) from the seventh inning onward across all four games. It was also evident in the bigger picture, where the Red Sox’s playoff odds could have gotten a big boost from a strong showing against their rivals. Instead, they were outscored 26-12 in one of the worst “Boston massacres” in the recent history of the game’s most famous rivalry. 12012Rays157112012Angels.277 RkYearTeamELORkYearTeamWAR/G The indignity of losing to the archrival Yankees with the season on the line is bad enough for Boston’s faithful. But the sweep could play a central role in helping make these Red Sox one of the most talented teams to miss the postseason under MLB’s current 10-team playoff structure. According to Elo, Boston’s current 1539 rating would be fourth-highest among teams that failed to play in the playoffs since 2012, trailing only the 2012 and 2018 Rays and the 2013 Texas Rangers. Along the same lines, the Red Sox’s 0.270 WAR per game would tie them for fourth among teams to miss the playoffs since 2012, behind the 2012 Los Angeles Angels, 2012 Rays and 2013 Rangers. Either way you cut it, teams as good as Boston usually play in the postseason. 52012Angels153652018Rays.270 The Sox would be among the best nonplayoff teamsThe best MLB teams according to Elo ratings and wins above replacement per game to miss the playoffs, since the 2012 postseason expansion 2006August52649-23 2009August4825-17 2019August41226-14 Sources: FanGraphs, Baseball-Reference.com 32013Rangers154032013Rangers.272 All is not totally lost for the Red Sox yet, of course. They are too good not to rattle off a streak of wins soon, although they have only split the first two games of their series against the rebuilding Kansas City Royals this week. Elo still considers the Sox roughly equivalent to the Rays and Oakland A’s, the two teams ahead of Boston for the final wild-card spot in the AL. (The Rangers are also tied with the Red Sox in the wild-card standings.) But it will be a tall order to make up a 6½-game deficit and leapfrog two good teams in the final few months of the season. More likely than not, the Red Sox will instead look at 2019 as a missed opportunity, a talented follow-up effort that never quite clicked the same way as the original despite running back mostly the same cast of characters for the sequel.Check out our latest MLB predictions. 22018Rays154322012Rays.277 Boston’s worst massacres (since 2000)Worst series sweeps suffered by the Boston Red Sox at the hands of the New York Yankees by total scoring margin, 2000-19 Runs