Galwegians March 2023

The Galway Hall was the venue for the Kinmount and District Educational Bursary Committee’s fundraiser on Saturday, February 11th which had a Valentine’s theme to it. The purpose of this event is to enjoy the great food prepared by the volunteers of the Galway Hall, to have some fun and frivolity, have a chance to win some prizes, and to raise some money for the bursary fund. This fund helps support local students that qualify to pursue a post-secondary education. Successful applicants may receive up to $2000 over 2 years which is based on $500 for each semester. Curiously, the last dinner/auction function held at the Galway Hall was the Kinmount Bursary’s event on Saturday, February 8th, 2020. Fast forward through the global pandemic for the remainder of 2020, and all of 2021 and 2022, and the February 11th, 2023 event was the first one at the hall since the “shutdown”.

This year’s event was very successful, raising just over $9000! This achievement was a reflection of the caring and the giving community in which we live and the support of its people, businesses, and organizations. In spite of the rough times experienced by many over the past three years, good-natured folks rallied for this cause that promoted and supported continued education and learning.

The Kinmount and District Bursary Committee is a small group of committed volunteers with noble hearts. The support from our community and beyond was humbling and very much appreciated. A huge thank-you is extended to everyone that made this evening successful. This includes everyone that attended the dinner and participated in the auctions as well the many supporters that donated money, auction items, baked goods, and prizes. And finally, this event could not have happened at all without the time, talents, dedication, and commitment given by all the volunteers that were involved in the days and weeks and months leading up to and including the ‘big night’.

The next upcoming event at the Galway Hall is the Victoria Pony Club’s fundraiser. It is on Saturday, March 4th. The doors open at 6 pm.

So far, we have enjoyed what may be called an ‘open winter’. Yes, to date, we have had two, count ‘em, two nights where the temperatures were in the -20C to -30C range, right after Groundhog Day. A fellow Galwegian gave me a weather lore saying that was shared throughout the family generations. “As the days grow longer, the cold grows stronger”. How timely!

 There have been several stretches of mild temperatures this winter. Some records were broken on Valentine’s Day in Ontario but several records were smashed on Wednesday, February 15th, Check out some examples from the chart below:

Location New Record (C) Previous Record (C) & Year

Toronto 15 12.2 1954

Hamilton 15.2   8.9 1976  

Kitchener-Waterloo 13.8 10 1954

London 14.2 11.7 1954

Peterborough 11.8    7.2 1976

Kingston 12.2    7.2 1976

Ottawa   9.6    6.7 1954

For the most part, this ‘open winter’ has made for better driving conditions. However, the milder temperatures can often create undesirable conditions such as slushy roads and slick roads from periods of freezing rain. A winter driving tip that I came across is called “Target Fixation”. Simply stated, it means “Look where you want to go”. Target fixation is encouraged when conditions cause you to start to skid or slide while driving. 

The mid-February warm spell prompted the return of a few of our feathered friends. On the morning of February 12th, trumpeter swans were heard flying across Clear Bay. That evening, a Barred Owl was heard hooting. On Valentine’s Day morning, crows were heard and seen near the Galway Hall parking lot. The following day, a lone goose was heard and spotted flying over Clear Bay.

Have you ever heard of the term, ‘frogsicle’ or better yet, have you ever found one? A frogsicle is simply a cold or frozen frog. I mentioned in last month’s article that I had found one on our rink while I was clearing the snow from it. Frogs have the abilities to concoct their own antifreeze to survive during the winter months. This concoction is a combination of the frog’s urine (which it does not excrete) and large amounts of glucose produced by its liver.

The Weather Network posted an article recently about the Earth’s Core. This solid metal core made up of nickel and iron does not rotate perfectly in time with the rest of the planet. New research suggests that it may have reversed direction. Did you know that the core is always rotating in the same direction as the entire planet rotates which is eastward? However, sometimes it rotates faster than the outer layers (super rotation=   appears to move forward or eastward), other times slower (sub rotation= appears to rotate backwards or westward), and there are times when the rotations match up (synched rotation= appears not to rotate at all).

Did you see Comet C/2022E3 (ZTF)? If so, congratulations! I went out a few times and searched the northern sky but to no avail. There were not many clear nights in January. However, looking towards Orion one evening, I did see the string of SpaceX satellites go past. These satellites are launched in groups of 60 and, because there are that many, it is an impressive sight. In one launch earlier this year, SpaceX lost 40 of their satellites. They were disabled due to a geomagnetic storm.

March 7th is the full Moon called the Worm Moon. It is also known as the Crow Moon, the Crust Moon, the Sap Moon, and the Lenten Moon. On March 20th, the vernal equinox occurs at 9:17 pm. On March 21st, the New Moon will not be visible because the moon will be on the same side as the Earth and the Sun. Therefore, this will be a good time to see fainter objects in the night sky if the conditions are favourable. Looking upward and looking ahead, there will be a full moon on April 6th. Mercury will be visible on April 11th and the New Moon is on April 20th. The Lyrids Meteor Shower occurs on April 22-23.

According to “Popular Science”, research is indicating that it is going to become increasingly difficult to view objects in our night skies. “Skyglow” is a form of light pollution. It affects stargazing, astronomy, and animals’ sense of daily and seasonal cycles. “Skyglow is rapidly diminishing our nightly views of the stars”, according to their findings which were based on an analysis of 50 000 observations. These observations were made by citizen scientists, using naked eye observations, from 2011 to 2022. Participants were part of the ‘Globe at Night’ citizen science project. One notable factor for this rapid growth of light pollution (Skyglow) in only 11 years is the switch from orange sodium vapour lights to white LEDs.

Here is a saying from the past. “If you lose an hour in the morning, you will be looking for it for the rest of the day”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *