Shells yeah, West Nipissing by-law keeps beaches fine and sandy

·3 min read

West Nipissing beachgoers beware, as there is a new by-law designed to maintain order and civil conduct while on the shore. Brought to council’s last meeting, the by-law regulates the use of public beaches within the municipality, and no person shall “act in any riotous, violent or threatening conduct or use profane or abusive language.”

Council accepted the draft, and plan to pass the by-law at a future meeting.

Stephen Poulin, Director of Economic Development and Community Services for West Nipissing helped draft the by-law. “We have had some disturbances, complaints and concerns at our public beaches, and we felt it best to address it through by-law.”

“Hopefully we can minimize the disturbances at our three beaches.”

Those three beaches Poulin mentioned are the Field beach on Lac Clair Road, the Sturgeon Falls beach off Main Street, and the beach on St. Jean Road in Verner. All of the beaches are unsupervised and the municipality recommends children heading to the beach should be accompanied by an adult.

And all are encouraged to follow the by-law.

We covered the no riotous actions / abusive language rule, but also, one shall not “cast, throw or in any way propel” any object at a person or one’s property. Throwing things at people is a no go, and one must not create a nuisance or disturb other people while at the beach.

Follow the rules posted on the signs. On that note, more signs with more rules will be coming to a municipal beach near you to outline these new by-laws.

The beaches will be closed from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., and anyone living the beach life during these hours will be considered trespassers and dealt with accordingly. The municipality is sending word to police to keep them in the loop on the new rules.

No fires – and definitely no bonfires – or barbeques are allowed. No charcoal or propane fueled cookers shall be used at the beach.

Nobody can operate a loudspeaker of amplifying equipment while kicking the sand. The municipality’s Noise Control By-Law governs the beaches as well.

Love to litter at the beach? Those days are over. Keep your trash to yourself, and don’t be so bold as to try to dump your leaves, grass clippings or other garbage at the beach. Same goes for snow, fill, or construction materials.

There will be no paper lanterns or balloons released by beachgoers.

No camping (including in the parking lots), no overnight parking, and no alcohol is allowed. And keep the recreation vehicles in the designated parking areas. They are not allowed on the beach.

What about the dogs? Section 6 of the by-law outlines the rules for dogs, cats, and all domesticated wildlife. Keep those animals leashed, pick up after them, and do no allow it to run at large. No animal shall enter the swimming area, save for guide dogs.

Fines have not yet been set for infractions, but council will decide on that soon. The new beach by-law can be found on the Municipality’s website.

David Briggs is a Local Journalism Initiative reporter who works out of BayToday, a publication of Village Media. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada.

David Briggs, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter,