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4th Annual Barrie’s Holi Fest – Barrie Indian Association

Barrie Indian Association is hosting its 4th Annual – Barrie’s Holi Fest., Festival of Colors on Sunday, March 28th from 11:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Barrie City Hall (outdoor, by the flags)  

However, one of the most colourful festivals actually known as Festival of Colour or Holi is a two day celebration known nearly throughout the world now.

The festival stems from pranks that Lord Krishna was known for.

It is said that he enjoyed throwing colored powder on the village girls and wetting them, making the village a riot of bright colors during the 2 day event.


Nowadays the colored powder is still thrown, but water guns are used to aim well and wet!!

Whatever your heritage – springtime in Canada is certainly worth celebrating! 

This is a virtual celebration that will be showcased LIVE on Facebook and Instagram of Barrie Indian Association.

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Celebrate Solstice with Shalu at Simmering Kettle

Finally! Spring is arriving and “Barrie-ites” we’re more than ready for a celebration!

The Equinox

Spring Equinox known as “Ostara” is also called the “Vernal” equinox.  This is the celebration of equal daylight and darkness hours; renewal, rebirth and new beginnings.  A perfect time to put the winter months to bed – head outside and celebrate nature.

Shalu Persaud of Simmering Kettle on Bryne Dr. feels this year is especially important to celebrate.  “We’ve had such an unusual year that we need to look at a fresh start and new beginnings.”

Come Celebrate!

She’s inviting everyone to a “Parking Lot Party” March 21st!  There will be vendors and dancing to celebrate!  It’s truly a wonderful family event.

Ways to Celebrate Spring!

Here are some great ways to celebrate with your family and friends over the upcoming week:

Take time to enjoy and celebrate the new life outdoors in nature.  Go for a walk, a bike ride or a hike.

Start planting indoors for your outdoor gardens.  Do a winter yard cleanup.

Prepare a family feast using seasonal spring foods; eggs, spring greens, shoots, sprouts, local breads, wine etc.

Have or attend a bonfire where you might tell stories, dance, beat drums or play music.

Create art representing the four seasons.

Decorate eggs.

Bring spring into your home – forsythia clippings, pussy willows, force flowering bulbs etc.

Meditate upon new spring life, practice yoga to create inner peace and balance.

Spring clean, start something new, establish a new daily routine or rhythm to your day.

Above all – Celebrate Spring!

“I skipped between the dancers, twirling my skirts. The seated, masked musicians didn’t look up at me as I leaped before them, dancing in place. No chains, no boundaries—just me and the music, dancing and dancing. I wasn’t faerie, but I was a part of this earth, and the earth was a part of me, and I would be content to dance upon it for the rest of my life.

Written by: Jane Laker

Photo Credit: Stephen Elliott

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Want a Freaky Coffee, Try Out Freaky Wizard

We came across a great place for a coffee and cakes with a twist. 

If you love Harry Potter, Board Games and Memorabilia you have try out Freaky Wizard.


Jamie and Joem met through their love of collectable toys. They started by buying and selling toys at shows. They then came up with the idea of opening a toy shop. The shop they found was four times the size they require. 

So they did some brainstorming so they can utilize the whole space. They came up with Freaky Wizard a place where you can play board games and enjoy a coffee and cakes. 

You have to go a see for yourself to see how unique this coffee shop is. 

Jamie and Joem built and designed nearly all of the interior, all apart from the tables.

Harry Potter and so much more!

Harry Potter is a big part of the theme of the shop, but there is so much more. Over 200 board games for you to try, you can buy collectable toys, you can even get your own potions and wand

All while having a great cup of coffee, they have their own special blend provided by Beaver Rock.

The decorations are original, wonderful and gothic, a geeks paradise.

Like everyone else Freaky Wizard has been hit by COVID. Just opening last July they couldn’t have picked a worse time to open. They have survived though and from what we can see, should thrive now.

More to Come!

They have some great ideas for the future. 

They will be doing quiz nights, Harry Potter will be at the forefront of these. 

They are also looking at live music and maybe comedy nights.

Such a Great Space!

If you are looking for somewhere to meet they also have a large room at the rear of the shop were you can hold meetings. For team building it is a great space for your company to meet and have fun.

There is much more to Freaky Wizards, you need to go and see for yourself. One last but important point, Joem and Jamie are very friendly and the whole place is very welcoming; it is somewhere once seen you will continue to go back to.

Written by: Ian Hendrie

Photo Credits: Stephen Elliott

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Get Your Game On – Labyrinth Games & Cafe

Get Your Game On - Warhammer 40K

42nd Millennium – The Emperor has gained control of the Galaxy.  Even with the injuries sustained during the Horace Heresy era he rules; protecting humanity.
A husk of a man, he resides in his Golden Chamber more dead than not.  Using his physic abilities, the battles are directed from afar.

For over 3 decades now of table top play, Warhammer 40K has come full circle to a new beginning.

Likely the most iconic fantasy board game ever played, Warhammer now moves to the Age of Sigmar.  The change comes with less regiment maneuvering in rank and file to a looser, more level playing field in Age of Sigmar.  As the game evolves players can fine tune their armies and strategies.

There will be an ever-growing number of new factions to support the Stormcast Eternals in their battle against Warriors of the Chaos god Khorne.

Once again it’s time to start collecting and readying the troops.

Preparing Yourself!

If you want to take part in the adventure – then prepare yourself now.  Forget the power of technology – read Codex Imperialis for all the back lore of the story.

Even better yet – talk to gamer Chris Rice, Owner of Labyrinth Games & Café in south end Barrie.

Chris has taken part in tournaments all over North America and even offers to paint the miniature collectable game pieces for some.

For All Collectors of Game Merch..

As Labyrinth owner, Chris realized that not everyone is a Warhammer gamer; also satisfying collectors of Pokémon, Dungeon and Dragons, Magic: The Gathering and dice!

When the world re-opens Labyrinth is a very cool place to visit!  Becoming a member or not – it’s the “in place” to recharge while gaming – earning valuable merchandise points.

Memberships Available

As a member though you can join exclusive events and purchase items for members only.

Chris also has an in-house 3-d printer available for your special projects.


With much to offer the community, Chris and Marjorie Rice take it one step further allowing local artists to hang their art as well.

They assist in selling the art for a small commission.

Chris tells us that they would really love a Super Hero artist to send their art in; there’s a very good market for that.


So Readers, Get Your Game On at Labyrinth Games & Cafe

Open for on-line orders and curbside pick up – get your game on and check it out!

Written by: Jane Laker

Photo Credit: Steve Elliott

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Barrie Families Unite and Succeed!

The City of Barrie and its people met this head on.  In an incredible moment in history the world shut down – but this city rose, facing the challenge with the strength of its people…Barrie Families Unite!

March 14, 2020, a sunny Saturday amidst worldwide confusion; a dream became reality.

Nikki Glahn, a resident of Barrie, felt a true desire to do something, anything to help.

Considering sage advice from close friends Nikki decided that people needed people to help each other during this totally bizarre time.

Keeping it Simple!

Nikki decided to keep it simple and created a Facebook group.  The group was created as a space to facilitate help within our community; a place to post and check in on posts from others in regards to needs that people may have during the uncertain times. BARRIE FAMILIES UNITE was created “TOGETHER as a COMMUNITY.” 

To her amazement there were 500+ people who had joined the group within the first 3 hours!

Every person, at every level has been able to assist or receive goodness from the total unselfishness of others.

First Anniversary!

Now, 1 year later at 11.8K members, this group has made an incredible grassroots movement of helping each other a part of every day.

BFU has helped residents as young as infants to the elderly and infirm.  They’ve found shoppers for those who couldn’t go themselves; fundraisers and drives for Pop-up Clothing Shops and campaigns for Christmas Cheer drives – all at no cost to anyone needing the services.

A Call to Action!

At the time of this one year anniversary Nikki realized that the foundation of her original mission needs to be formalized in order to continue moving forward.

Putting out a call to action, Nikki received no less than 70 residents wanting to volunteer, contribute, support, build and maintain the community!

This is on top of the DOZENS of volunteers that have been an integral part of building the BFU Community this past year.  Literally thousands of people hours have already gone into getting BFU to where it is today!

There has been authentic desire, gratitude and feedback from the residents of the city.

Moving forward with a strategic planning committee the desire is to be proactive rather than the reactive measures they survived upon during their first year. 

The growth has been incredible, the challenges wonderful, and the results amazing!  Barrie Families Unite has become a facilitating group on steroids!

Our Focus!

Moving forward BFU plans to remain true to their origin:

            Clothing children as a primary concern

            Food and medical devices for those in need

            Infant needs

Creating a strong infrastructure with strategic planning now allows the group to create a cyclical calendar of events as a main focus.

Secondly BFU envisions that they will contivue to be available to assess and assist during emergency/disaster situations; people in transitions; people starting over.

There is currently a temporary warehouse where the group has been allowed to store excess stock and supplies of commonly needed items, BUT they are searching for a permanent home!

This is real people helping real people at a pure grassroots level.

And the Nominee is...

BFU is a finalist for the MAYORS INNOVATION AWARD 2020 – Community Impact. This award recognizes an organization (public or private) that has stepped up to proactively build connection, resilience and morale among Barrie residents, businesses and/or cultural communities.

BFU has done that and more!  Partnerships have been created throughout all avenues of services.


Imagine:  A BFU member (Alison Pinkey) organized to have 515 hot meals supplied by 2 area Restaurateurs; Danny’s Fish and Chips and Cravings Fine Foods – delivered by volunteers to shut in seniors during the initial shutdown.  Each one delivered with a beautiful handmade card to help put a smile on a seniors face. BFU is also currently assisting with a Pay it Forward partnership between BFU members and The Good Food Box where 30 boxes of fresh produce are delivered to families in need on the 2nd Wednesdaqy of each month. And that’s just 2 of many collaborating partnerships!  Actually there’s so much that is being done and can be done, visit the page to see how BFU can assist anyone you know is struggling, or how you can assist!

This is all being done by volunteers, all done to assist a neighbor, friend or stranger just to lend a helping hand in the moment.

Barrie Families Unite – Well Done!

Listen to our podcast interview with Nikki

Written By: Jane Laker

Photo Credit: Stephen Elliott

Are you a Barrie based business looking to expand your digital footprint?  Let us know!  We can help get you Uncovered!