Monthly Archives: February 2009

Police search for burglary suspect


This image from a store surveillance camera in Baden shows a suspect in several area robberies.

Police are asking for the public’s help stop a rash of area break ins.

On December 31, 2008 between 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., an unknown male broke into a residence on Foell Street in Baden and attempted to steal a quantity of jewelry.

The suspect parked his vehicle in a nearby parking lot, then walked through an empty field to the rear of a townhouse complex where he forced himself into a home. It appears that jewelry was the target. Several other units in this complex were broken into as well.

The Break and Enter Enforcement Team is actively investigating 45 similar break and enters in the Wilmot, Wellesley and Woolwich Townships, where the targeted areas are the master bedroom and jewelry. It appears that these break and enters are occurring during the evening hours, between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. when residents are out of their homes.

Police are asking for the public’s assistance in these break and enters. Police also remind residents to be security conscious when leaving their homes, and ensure the residence does not appear to be unoccupied. Police encourage reporting any suspicious persons or vehicles immediately.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 519-653-7700 ext. 3306 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.

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Heavy metal

Forest Glen students will be rocking out to the faux-musical talent of their peers on March 13. An air band competition will be taking place, with around 10 different bands battling it out on stage. The best costumes and performance will determine the winner. Using the plastic guitars and drum sets from the video games Guitar Hero and Rock Band, the students were rocking out to various hits from the past few decades during practice sessions this week. Cooper Honderich, Rhett Miller, Nathan Weinheimer and Tucker Bowman will be taking on the role of the Guns N’ Roses as they perform Welcome to the Jungle.
Tim Murphy, Independent staff

See more online with a video of the air band rehearsal at

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Family Day Funfest fills the arena


The second annual Family Day Funfest welcomed hundreds of kids and parents to the New Hamburg Arena on Feb. 16 to have fun and help raise over $10,000 for Family and Childrens Services of Waterloo Region.

Sue Foster photo

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Kitchener-Conestoga MP Harold Albrecht spreads the love on Valentine’s Day

Pictured (left to right): Nancy Knowles (Zion United Church), Harold Albrecht MP (Kitchener-Conestoga), Nigel Gordijk (New Hamburg Board of Trade).

Kitchener-Conestoga MP Harold Albrecht was at MeMe’s Café on Valentine’s Day to help raise money for the New Hamburg Flood Relief Fund.
Albrecht was at the Peel Street, New Hamburg café to sell love-themed fare for the occasion, including MeMe’s famous “Guilt-free” heart-shaped cookies. The cookies, created by MeMe’s Café’s owner, Meredith Hagen, raised over $450.00 for the cause prior to Valentine’s Day. Albrecht’s sale of MeMe’s cookies and desserts on Saturday February 14 brought in an additional $1,100.00.
The fund was started by the New Hamburg Board of Trade in response to the flooding many New Hamburg residents experienced on December 28 2008. Local organizations banded together to assist residents who lost essential items due to the floodwaters.
For more information about the New Hamburg Flood Relief Fund, an effort of the New Hamburg Board of Trade and churches of New Hamburg, visit

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Nith River speeding up

news-riverTim Murphy
Independent staff

Water flow rates along the Nith River have spiked today, with more rain sure to come.

Anyone living in the flood plain should be sure to get any items off the ground where they will be safe from water.

The Grand River Conservation Authority has issued a flood advisory warning in advance of a forecast calling for rising temperatures mixed with rain this week.
The weather forecast for Wednesday, as of press time, predicted a high of 11C, along with up to 15mm of rain falling across the watershed.
“It’s enough to prompt a warning,” said GRCA spokesperson Dave Schultz.
As with all weather forecasts, those numbers could change at anytime. Be sure to visit the Independent website at for updates on this story.
The Dec. 28 flooding in New Hamburg saw temperatures between 12 C and 15 C, mixed with significantly  more rain. Between 15 and 30mm of rain fell.
With some of the worst local flooding in over 30 years still fresh in everyone’s memories, residents of the floodplain in New Hamburg have started to take precautions.
Grace Street homeowner Guy Sisco has been working in his garage for weeks to lift items onto a base of cement blocks in an attempt to keep them dry.
With the thaw coming, he wouldn’t be surprised to see a flood.
“I’ve kinda got sick of working to clean it up,” he said.
Each year a flood occurs, Sisco said he estimates about $2,000 in expenses.
In forty years of living on Grace Street, his basement has flooded seven times, three of which very recently.
Sisko was down at the river just prior to press time. He said the ice was still solid near his home, and that the water levels hadn’t appeared to rise yet.
“I think we’ll be alright.”
Wilmot fire chief John Ritz a flood warning advisory does not prompt any action by the department.
He has been keeping an eye on the situation.
“If there is anything brewing, they are in touch with me,” he said of the GRCA.
But until the situation escalates, there is nothing for the fire department to do.
Last week, Schultz told the Independent the flood risk was minimal.
“The snow on the ground will probably soak up the rain,” he said.
There will be some melting, but the cold nights will keep everything mostly frozen.
“It’s not enough to get things moving,” he said.
A snow survey in Millbank, which is at the top end of the Nith River watershed, shows about half the amount of snow is currently on the ground as there was during Christmas.
As the predicted temperature and rainfall increased however, the GRCA decided to change its opinion of the flood risk.
Despite the very low risk of flooding, Schultz said residents should be ready.
“They should always be on alert,” he said.
Schultz also mentioned an upcoming meeting.
A public open house will be held in New Hamburg to provide residents with information about the flood warning system and to reduce the risks posed by flooding in the community.
The meeting will be held Feb. 19 at the New Hamburg Community Centre, 251 Jacob St., from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Representatives of several organizations will be on hand to answer questions including the GRCA, the Township of Wilmot, Waterloo regional police, Union Gas and Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro.
A new brochure, available by visiting our website, is being distributed to properties within the floodplain of the Nith River in New Hamburg. It has information on the flood warning system, including a map showing the Flood Warning Levels established in the town.

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