Tour de Barrie Island participants spot 15 Sandhill cranes at event

    BARRIE ISLAND—It is a long time tradition that, as it is held during the Civic Holiday weekend, brings together family and friends from all over together.

    The annual Tour de Barrie Island ‘In Search of the Sandhill Crane’ was held this past Saturday afternoon under beautiful warm, sunny skies.

    “This is always a good family time,” said Carolyn Lane-Rock, one of the organizers of the event, which originated in 1991.

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    “Our participants saw a total of 15 Sandhill cranes this year,” said Ms. Lane-Rock. The Sandhill cranes were noticed by people who were bicycling on the tour route in Barrie Island.

    “We had a total of five people on bicycles for the tour with 22 walkers-joggers,” said Ms. Lane-Rock. About 10 of the participants were from Toronto, one from Winnipeg, and one participant all the way from Luxembourg.

    The tour event always begins with the launching of an arrow, which was carried out by eight-year-old Huddson Smith this year.

    Ms. Lane-Rock has explained in the past that she and her sister Gloria  had been attending a jazz festival in Montreal years ago. It was after a parade they attended there that they got the idea of making a large Sandhill Crane, using a javex bottle, and holding an event like the Tour de Barrie Island.

    The original tour de Barrie Island held in 1991 included 20 bicyclists, with three Sandhill Cranes sighted, and a total of 29 people on hand for the dinner.

    This past Saturday evening there was a total of 42 people on hand for the dinner, which was held in the Barrie Island Community Hall.