Come to the AGM on Sunday August 3 !

The 2014 Annual Meeting ("AGM") of the Birch Island Association will take place at 10 am on Sunday August 3.

Location: the Birch Island Branch Library, adjacent to #57.

There will be a brief business meeting and a talk on "Cottage Water Systems: How they work and what to do if they don't." The talk will include information on water purification. We have been sampling water around the island, and it is clear that cottagers should purify the water they drink.

Ice cream cones will be served. Bring chairs, and perhaps even a picnic lunch.

Hope to see you then!

Spring Newsletter

The Birch Island Residential Property Owners Association (BIRPOA) is an organization of islanders with the common interest of maintaining, preserving and enhancing our unique life on Birch Island.

2013 BIRPOA Accomplishments:

1) Maintained:
a. walking trails (including rebuilding barrier at end of causeway);
b. Birch Island Branch Library (including adding upper windows); and
c. BIRPOA web site (
2) Purchased two new dock carts
3) Painted the bulletin board at Sand Lake Marine
4) Kept members updated, by e-mail or phone, on pertinent issues and items of interest
5) Hosted the Annual General Meeting Sunday, August 4th
6) Presented Sharron and John Curley and Sylvia and Orland French with the GALA (Got A Lot Accomplished) Award
7) Provided list of service providers

2014 BIRPOA Plans:
1) Create a “Reading Garden” outside the library, including new benches
2) Install a glass-covered information board outside the Library
3) Install box to house battery booster at marina
4) Maintain trails, Birch Island Branch Library and BIRPOA web site
5) Keep members updated, by e-mail or phone, on pertinent issues and items of interest
6) Host the Annual General Meeting Sunday, August 3rd, 10 am at the Birch Island Branch Library

BIRPOA needs your support so please become a 2014 member! Volunteers are also needed to help out with any one of the above projects and we’re looking for a BIRPOA Web Master. Volunteering is an enjoyable way to spend some time and meet fellow islanders.

Enjoy your 2014 cottage season!

Andy Shaw, President, BIRPOA, 613-680-2411 (h), 613-292-2664 (c),, Lot#96

High Water on the Rideau
Due to heavy snow and rain, the water levels on the Rideau were very high this year. Please inspect your docks and shore attachments to make sure all is in order.

Staying Connected
The BIRPOA web site,, is a great place to go for information regarding Birch Island happenings. Friend us on Facebook (Birch Island on Sand Lake, Rideau Waterway) and follow us on Twitter at Birch_Island. Check the BIRPOA Bulletin Board at the Marina regularly for community and island events and information.

Boating Safety
Boat wakes damage shorelines, docks and the boats tied to them, and swamp smaller craft. Please remember that the speed limit is10km/hour within 100 feet (30m) of shore. Please be on the lookout for swimmers, loons and their chicks.

Birch Island Branch Library
The Birch Island Branch Library, run on the honour system, is found along the trail at cottage #57. Your thoughtful donations of books, DVDs, complete puzzles and games are welcomed. Simply leave them on the counter with your name so that they can be reviewed, labeled and shelved. For more information contact Paola Durando at 613-328-0739,, lot #3.

Garbage Collection / Recycling
Rideau Lakes Township is implementing changes to its recycling program. Each week you can recycle either plastics and metal (Week A-YELLOW) or paper and fibres (Week B-ORANGE). Weeks alternate throughout the year… please mark your calendars and/or get a full calendar from the Township’s web site (

Several new items may now be recycled, including all plastic containers with a recycling symbol #1 through #7 (see picture). If it doesn’t have a number on it, it’s not recyclable.

Garbage collection begins Sunday, May 18th at the Glover Road Public Boat Ramp from 4-8pm. Collection hours change to 4-6pm September 7th and collection ends Oct 12th. If the truck is not there, please leave your bagged waste (with a tag) and recycling at the location.

Trail Maintenance
BIRPOA, with your help, ensures the main trails are kept clear and are marked for safe use. Should heavier mowing be required, equipment is barged to the island to cut back growth. We ask that residents mow public pathways attached to their property. Ry Weisiger oversees trail maintenance. Contact him at 613-359-6279,, lot #55, if there is an issue on the trails that needs to be addressed.

Fire Safety Permits are required for outdoor burning ($10) and are available at Gordanier's Hardware in Elgin, the Township Office in Chantry, the Portland Ultramar, Hearth and Home in Westport, Bennetts Bait and Tackle (Hwy 15/Lombardy Rd) and at the Delta Market. Follow the regulations and burn during the coolest, dampest time of day and not when it's windy. Make sure wood piles are stored 10 metres away from your cottage and that dead vegetation is cleared from around the cottage's foundation. Prune branches that overhang your roof and wires and keep gutters clean. Your chimney, smoke alarms and fire extinguishers should be in good working order. Your garden hose should be connected and buckets and shovels should be handy. Call 911 in any emergency, then call the marina.

Septic Systems
The Municipal Septic System Re-Inspection Program begins mandatory re-inspection in 2016. Go to the Township of Rideau Lakes web site and check the Development Services Department for septic tank information.

Use of Trails
There has been some concern expressed over the recreational use of motorized vehicles on Birch Island’s walking trails. Please keep in mind that the trails are maintained by BIRPOA for pedestrians. Occasionally, service vehicles (e.g., Hydro) use the trail.

We need your memberships to keep Birch Island an enjoyable and safe place for our families to escape to! Please take the time to fill out the enclosed membership form and send it in today. Please leave a cheque in the BIRPOA ‘drop box’ at the Sand Lake Marine office OR mail your cheque to Alice Howarth OR use the PayPal option on the website.

President: Andy Shaw,, home: 613-680-2411, cottage: 613-292-2664, lot#96
Vice President: Bob Cavenagh,, cottage: 613-359-5461, cottage:, lot#57
Past President: Jae Shaw,, home: 613-680-2411, cottage: 613-292-2664, lot#96
Web Master: WE NEED YOU! ? Join us!
Secretary: Catherine Burnside,, cottage: 613-359-5393, lot#62
Library: Paola Durando,, cottage: 613-328-0739, lot#3
Treasurer/Membership: Alice Howarth,, 613-328-1146, lot#92
Trail Maintenance: Ry Weisiger,, cottage: 613-359-6279, lot#55
Special Projects/Rights-of-Way: John Feltmate, cottage: 613-359-5831, lot#24 Special Projects: Susan Cavenagh, cottage: 613-359-5461, lot#57