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A lot has happened since February

Updated: May 4, 2022

Dear readers,

It has been a while since I have done a blog of Shed activities. Without further ado, here is what has been happening inside our Shed and Sheds elsewhere:

Wheeler’s Pancake House

Most recently, a group of our Shedders braved the elements to go to Wheeler’s Pancake House. Bravery was required since the morning of our outing was an icy one, but we made it in one piece and by the end of the outing the day had improved.

Staying in touch

Also, recently, John Peters and Nick Fry, through much searching and elimination, finally found a communcations method by which Shedders within the NMS could reach specific groups and individuals within the NMS. One simply has to go to the Members Only page on this website and, after typing in the password, go to the Contacts page and at the bottom of the page there are buttons which link you to our different groups and specific coordinators.

John has been busy

Also, thanks to the efforts of John Peters who is active not only in our Shed but also within CMSA, our national body, Sheds will soon be able to apply for grants like the following Shed in BC.

Salt Spring Island Men's Shed

A new Men's Shed on Salt Spring Island BC is applying for a $28,000 grant over three years to build/buy a workshop/meeting place. It takes work like this to move a Shed forward! We wish them luck! We also have the URL where their application is posted if we want to use it to guide us in applying for a grant.

Elon Men's Shed, Ireland

Then there is news from across the pond.

From the Elon Men's Shed, Ireland Last week we received planning permission for a portacabin workshop. Today the portacabin was delivered and put in place. We now need to get the electrics connected (any electrician out there who could help?). The portacabin is a key part of our plans to increase the indoor hobby/workshop space so we can increase the number and scope of activities - e.g., mechanical activities (including bike repairs), photography (including framing) and specialist wood working.

Ron Lavoie's Birdhouse Workshop

We also have news from our own Shed. Ron Lavoie offered a birdhouse building workshop. He offers the following observation: “Two participants completed their bird houses today. They are Randy Zorgel and Lila Duffy. As you can see by the enclosed picture they were pleased with the result. Randy chose to engrave a blue bird utilising my CNC machine on the top of his house. Since it was a small group they were able to complete the project in 3hours.”

If you are interested in some instruction. An another group during an afternoon session of 3 hours would be sufficient. If this interests you, contact Ron Lavoie at

The Birdhouse Workshop gets a mention in the Hummail Newsletter

Even Kris Reindeau in her Hummail newsletter commented on the Bird house workshop.

“If only I had the tools, I could build a birdhouse myself!” Thanks to Ron Lavoie and John Peters at the Naismith Men’s Shed, would-be carpenters will have the opportunity to make a unique birdhouse for the MMLT Birdhouse Bonanza auction in April.

The Men’s Shed will host a six-hour workshop at Ron’s home, 23 St. James Street, Almonte, and participants will come away with a basic bluebird house ready for decoration. Ron will provide the plans and the expertise for up to four people at a time to learn how to build their houses. The cost is a nominal $25 for materials. No woodworking experience is necessary, and teens to seniors will be welcome.

The Naismith Men’s Shed is a supportive group of men who have devised ways to stay engaged in the community and with each other through difficult times. They are eager to share their skills and have helped with many projects — from building Christmas decorations in their well-appointed workshop to simply gathering for breakfasts, game days or excursions. They are an inclusive and approachable group who have established themselves as a valuable asset in the community.

To sign up for this Birdhouse Workshop on March 16, (9am–noon and 1–4pm), please contact Rob Lavoie directly at 256–3436 or via email. Then get out the art supplies and make a beauty for the Birdhouse Bonanza! Entries will be received up to April 14 (find details here). For more on the birdhouse auction, email Glenda Jones.

We are indeed a talented group

Also of note (pun intended) is one of our Shedders.

Almonte songwriter Keith Sheldrick will soon release his first full-length original album done in his senior years, reflecting on a life’s work towards resilience and strength.

This album ‘Resilient – Ransom Project’ is quite remarkable having been recorded by Ottawa Valley and Toronto talent. It will be coming to all streaming platforms April 29.

The boys in the Workshop have been busy.

Bob Dickson and Roger Rioux have been experimenting with a lawn chair design akin to a Muskoka Chair and have created a prototype (which was raffled for $5/ticket or $10/for 3 and subsequently won by Bill Rawson), a modified version of the prototype and are now working on Version II. This is a lovely chair since it has been modified to accommodate the Men’s Shed audience by being light enough to move easily and wide enough to get in and out of easily.

It's great when someone remembers (your order!)

Except for the Wheeler’s outing, a small group of the Shedders have been going to the Gourmet Restaurant in Carleton Place for breakfast. It has been a pleasant experience having Sue greet us with coffee, a smile and a rhyming off of the orders that we had had at the previous breakfast.

A new NMS project

The NMS recently received a project request from the MVCA to build a “free library” box for the Gatehouse at the Mill of Kintail. During a recent Zoom call, the design and creation of this library box was discussed and potentially finalised. Now we need to build it. It is great to be able to help the community in small ways.

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