Ag society seeks meeting, Mariners board asked to review trailer

Belle Hatfield
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Mariners Centre land eyed for possible casino/hotel, pool or curling centre

By Belle Hatfield
The Yarmouth County Agricultural Society is asking for a meeting with the Mariners Centre board and the two municipal partners that own the facility.


This trailer has served as the exhibition offices since the Yarmouth County Agricultural Society's facilities were ripped down and the Mariners Centre built in 2000.

The society’s president Amy Rose says several issues need addressing, including the exhibition office trailer, which is located on the Mariner Centre property, and the development of a new multi-purpose, dirt floor facility.

 Rose says the agricultural society needs to determine whether the support is still there from the three parties for hosting the Western Nova Scotia Exhibition on the Mariners Centre property, and for accommodating the society's office trailer. Construction of a new dirt floor arena to accommodate livestock and other events that require dirt is seen as a solution to problems that has prompted the Mariners Centre’s board to ban dirt from the main arena.

Town council considered the request at its monthly meeting on Thursday, Dec. 12, and is not ruling out a meeting with the agricultural society, but wants to meet with Yarmouth municipal council and the management board in advance of a meeting with the agricultural society.

At the same meeting, a motion by Councillor Phil Mooney to request that the Mariners Centre board remove the society’s trailer from its property was defeated. A second motion, that the Mariners Centre board undertake a review of the trailer’s location on the site did pass.

Councillor Mooney also called for the development of a long-range strategic plan for the property, which is located at the intersection of Starrs and  Haley roads, one of the busiest corners in western Nova Scotia.

His motion called for the partners to look at “all possible options and uses, such as a hotel/casino complex, a fully-equipped aqua-centre with Olympic-sized pool, proper ice-surface for regulation curling, and a field house to include indoor soccer, track and walking facilities, among other amenities.”

The motion passed unanimously.

Yarmouth municipal council has already met informally with representatives of the agricultural society and the council has agreed to a joint meeting.


Organizations: Mariners Centre, Yarmouth County Agricultural Society, Yarmouth municipal council Western Nova Scotia Exhibition Town council

Geographic location: Starrs, Nova Scotia

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Recent comments

  • Julia Bancroft
    December 16, 2013 - 13:52

    While I am not a casino goer I think a swimming aquatic facility would be a wonderful asset that would be used all year and is beneficial to young and old. The YMCA pool is extremely small, crowded and expensive. The agricultural use for fairs etc is a Yarmouth tradition and must be maintained if possible. There must be common ground between the parties. Surely there is room for both if not at this location then let's find another. The bigger question, where will the money come from?

  • Eleanor Macisaac
    December 15, 2013 - 09:02

    I agree as a taxpayer in both the Town of Yarmouth and the Municipality that the trailer should be removed and the Ag Society should look further to build their dirt floor arena such as the Municipal Complex in Hebron which we own and has plenty acres of land in which to locate . That piece of property where the Mariners is located is too valuable to use for truck pulls and cows. We need to think positive and to attract and keep people coming into Yarmouth with something that will entice them to stay

  • John R Levac
    December 14, 2013 - 14:27

    These meetings need to stop being behind close doors. Bring everything to the light of day. Why was synthetic dirt not given a consideration. Is there an agenda here that is going un-seen? Is there an Axe to grind between town and perhaps a certain member of the Ag. society? If so spell it out. If the town is un-comfortable conducting business with the Ag society because of someone, then tell them that. Also allow for public consultation. Do not take away the very thing that makes Yarmouth special. You need to understand you are a small country town, that's your appeal, market that. You are not Halifax, don't try to be Halifax you will lose every time. People come to visit Yarmouth for what makes it special, and a Casino and an Olympic pool is not it.