Winter 2017
Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award
Paul Givens, Director of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation (left) presented the 2016 Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award to the Vranckx family for their outstanding achievements at Blueberry Hill Estates.

NORFOLK COUNTY, January 19, 2017 – Blueberry Hill Estates took home the 2016 Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award presented by the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation at the Economic Development Symposium on January 18th in Port Dover.

The award honours leaders in sustainability whose businesses have made significant differences in the social, economic, natural and cultural environments of Norfolk County. The award is a symbol of achievement and celebrates the accomplishments of community and business leaders who have actively engaged the tourism community to promote and encourage best practices.

The Vranckx family has taken a traditional tobacco farming background and turned it into a blueberry farm and winery known for their distinct cultural and natural assets.
Their focus is to preserve the unique environmental character of Norfolk County and are committed stewards of the land demonstrated through their many environmental projects, said Paul Givens, Director of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation.

“We are so honoured to receive this award from such an important organization in our community. At Blueberry Hill, we strive towards creating as sustainable an environment and business as possible. This is just the beginning for us, as our family is continually investigating new ventures to add to our sustainable tourism initiatives” stated Nick Vranckx, Winemaker at Blueberry Hill Estates.

Five excellent nominations were received, which made the task of selecting a winner that much more difficult by the members of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundations’ Board of Directors. They included Canada‘s First Forestry Station, Long Point Eco-Adventures, Long Point Beach Club, Tree Climbing Canada, and Blueberry Hill Estates.

The 2016 Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award was crafted by local artist, Jack Worton, from Long Point. The sculpture is of a Heron carved from Norfolk black walnut mounted on white alabaster secured to a stained white oak base, Blueberry Hill Estates receives a year-long membership from the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation and a decorative plaque to display at their property.

The Sustainable Tourism Ambassador of the Year Award is just one initiative of the Biosphere’s sustainable tourism project in partnership with Norfolk County. Previous winners include, Whistling Gardens and Bonnieheath Lavender Farm. The Long Point Biosphere, together with Georgian Bay, and Frontenac Arch, received an Ontario Trillium Foundation grant to help advance sustainable tourism in each biosphere community through the Amazing Places project For more information about sustainable tourism initiatives in Norfolk, visit

Upcoming Events:

Empowering Landowners in Conservation

Thursday, March 23rd, 2017
9:30 am to 3:00 pm
Delhi Hungarian Hall - 71 King Street, Delhi, ON N4B 1X7
Attention farmers and landowners of Norfolk County!
You are invited to attend and participate in our FREE workshop tailored specifically to Norfolk County farmers and landowners interested in learning more about conservation-based tools and techniques that can be applied to their privately owned agricultural and/or non-agricultural lands. 

Admission and catered lunch are FREE!
Please RSVP on our Facebook page, or by emailing

Visit our website event page, or Facebook page for more details and a full event schedule!

This event is brought to you by: The Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation, in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, and thanks in part to funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

5th Research & Conservation Conference

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017
8:30 am to 4:00 pm
Simcoe Recreation Centre -
 Hall; 182 South Drive, Simcoe ON  N3Y 1G5
Come celebrate Earth Day with us and learn more about the research and conservation projects taking place in and around your Long Point World Biosphere Reserve. 
Admission is FREE! 
Lunch is $15.00 - please pre-register for lunch by April 17th! (Click Here)
Stay tuned for updates on the event schedule and presentation details on our website, Facebook page and on!

This event is brought to you by: The Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation, in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, and thanks in part to funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

Save the Date:
Amazing Place Bus Tour

Wednesday, May 10th, 2017 will be the first annual Amazing Place Bus Tour. We will be touring several of our Amazing Places giving participants an opportunity to learn what makes the Amazing Place special and enjoy some unique experiences.  Invitations will be going out to folks in the tourism industry and the media. We want visitors to know about our must-visit destinations!
Meet the Locals: Launch May 2017
Have you ever wondered about the native flora (plants) and fauna (wildlife) in the Long Point Biosphere Reserve and Norfolk County?
We have created a fun, active way to get out and explore our Amazing Places and “Meet the Locals” this summer. Look for the launch of this program May 1st, 2017. You could win some amazing Norfolk experiences, while enjoying nature at its best.
Welcome Our New Board Members:
Billie Helm, Director

Billie Helm has lived in Long Point for 2 years. Originally drawn to Long Point’s beach, she has fallen in love with the community, ecosystem, and the biodiversity Long Point has to offer. She is a recent graduate of Adventure Expeditions and Leadership diploma program at Fanshawe College. 

Billie is the head astronomer with Long Point Eco Adventures where she fosters team work and emphasizes the importance of stewardship. 

Billie is raising her children in a way that makes them environmentally conscious and lovers of the outdoors. The whole family is thriving in Norfolk County.

Dave Cameron, Director

Dave Cameron has been at Long Point for over 25 years. He is a retired business executive, having managed Canadian divisions of multinational medical technology companies for over 30 years.

Dave holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Toronto and enjoys travel and an outdoor lifestyle of sailing, surfing, cycling, skiing and hiking. Dave is a member of Pathways for People which is a committee that advocates for the development and improvement of walking, running, hiking and cycling trails across Norfolk County. Dave also serves on the Long Point Rate Payers Association Board of Directors.

Tara Carpenter, Director
Tara Carpenter has had a love of nature and the outdoors from an early age thanks to growing up on a Norfolk County farm and regularly engaging in wildness camping trips with her family as a child.  Having travelled many parts of the world for 17 years extended Tara’s knowledge of the natural world and her love for this earth we call home. The most memorable experience of her travels was being a deck hand on a sailing ship exploring the Great Barrier Reef in Australia for 6 years. Now being a mother to a very active, creative, and outdoors-loving six year old has inspired Tara to encourage other parents and their families to get outdoors. Delivering family outdoor events at Whistling Gardens, one of the “Amazing Places” of Norfolk, has given Tara the opportunity to put her passions into action. It is her enthusiasm for the great outdoors, conservation, sustainability and education that motivated her desire to volunteer for the Long Point Biosphere Reserve.  She is a recent graduate of the Adventure Expeditions and Interpretive Leadership Diploma program at Fanshawe College, Simcoe Campus. 
Welcome Our New Staff Member:
Cynthia Brink, NatureHood Project Coordinator

Cynthia Brink from Chateauguay, Quebec grew up amongst a family of naturalist and outdoorsmen. Spending most of her developing years exploring her natural world and traveling with her family to exotic places like Peru, Cayman Island and Manaus, Brazil.

She is a mother to 4 feral children who now resides in Norfolk. With her passion for the natural world she has spent many hours in the field with her children homeschooling them through the use of their surroundings. In her spare time, she works as Administrative support to the St. Williams conservation reserve. She has also worked as the Nature Educator for Nature’s Calling Environmental Education teaching outdoor education and providing interpretive programs to the Provincial Parks in Haldimand & Norfolk areas.

The newest member of the Biosphere’s staff, Cynthia joined the Biosphere Reserve in January 2017 as the new NatureHood Coordinator.

Conscious of her impact on the environment Cynthia is always busy making improvements to achieve the goal of a low carbon foot print. Cynthia also enjoys what the Carolinian life zone has to offer in natural attractions. You may cross paths with her while hunting, fishing or harvesting wild foods to feed her family in the hope to be self-sustainable. Always learning and improving herself she continues to take classes on herbology and passive solar home building. 

For a full list of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation Board of Directors, Staff, and brief biographies for each - please visit the "Board of Directors" page on website:
Visit Our Digital Library!
Over the past two years, the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation has set out to provide public access via the creation of a comprehensive, searchable web-database that enables conservation practitioners to access information that will assist them in implementing the best management practices to ensure effective ecosystem and resource management, as well as conservation and restoration.

Through acquiring special permissions from local organizations, the LPWBR has compiled research papers, grey literature, case studies, guiding regulations, and relevant legislation which have been made publicly accessible through one database.
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