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South Shore local governments following province’s lead, restricting park access

By Evan Taylor May 31, 2023 | 12:36 PM

Joanne Francis / Unsplash

Following the Province of Nova Scotia’s decision to impose restrictions on woodland activity due to the ongoing wildfires, several municipal bodies around the South Shore have announced the closure of wooded areas in their parks. These closures aim to prioritize public safety and minimize the risk of forest fires.

The Municipality of the District of Lunenburg (MODL) has made the decision to close all MODL parks and trails until further notice. The municipality’s parks and trails, which are primarily wooded and located at a distance from volunteer fire departments, pose a potential risk. Mayor Carolyn Bolivar-Getson expressed gratitude to the dedicated firefighters across Nova Scotia and emphasized the importance of their commitment in protecting lives and property.

The Region of Queens Municipality has also taken immediate action, closing municipal trails and wooded areas of municipal parks. The closure affects several locations, including Pine Grove Park, Trestle Trail, Meadow Pond Trail, Queens Place Trail, Path Lake Park, and Scout Camp Park. However, non-wooded parks such as Tupper Park, Centennial Park, Privateer Park, Port Medway Lighthouse Park, sports fields, and playgrounds remain open. At parks with both wooded and non-wooded areas, such as Beach Meadows Beach Municipal Park, access to the wooded areas is restricted due to the heightened risk of forest fires.

Bridgewater, in consultation with the Bridgewater Fire Department, has also decided to close certain wooded parks. The affected parks include Centennial Trail (except the paved section on LaHave Street), Riverview Park, Sperry Ninos Park, Generations Active Park (wooded pathways), Glen Allan Park, and Pinecrest Park (wooded pathways). However, numerous other parks and playgrounds in Bridgewater remain open, including Aberdeen Green, Pijinuiskaq Park, Shipyards Landing, Woodland Gardens, and many more. Park users are reminded to stay on dedicated park pathways and refrain from entering wooded areas.

In Lunenburg, the Back Harbour Trail and Bay to Bay Trail are closed to cyclists and pedestrians to comply with the provincial ban on all activity in wooded areas. However, Front Harbour Trail, parks, and playgrounds remain open for public enjoyment. Residents and visitors are also urged to adhere to the provincial fire ban, which prohibits fires in fire pits, fireworks, tiki torches, and outdoor wood-burning stoves. Additionally, individuals are reminded not to discard cigarette butts on the ground and to ensure they are fully extinguished before disposal.

As the situation develops, updates regarding the reopening of parks and trails will be communicated through official municipal channels. The municipal bodies emphasize the importance of public cooperation and understanding during these challenging times and extend appreciation to the firefighting teams working tirelessly to combat the wildfires affecting communities across Nova Scotia.


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