Councillors, what’s your favourite?

By Lindsay Advocate

We asked members of our incoming council about their favourite book, movie and favourite place to visit in Kawartha Lakes.

Mayor – Doug Elmslie

Favourite book: Battle Cry by Leon Uris, followed closely by Herman Wouk’s Winds of War. These novels about the Second World War in the Pacific and in Europe speak of people coming together and overcoming great odds, ignoring personal well-being and safety.

Favourite movie: Lawrence of Arabia, which shows a troubled misfit, an intellectual in the military, succeeding against all odds to achieve something no one thought could be done.

Favourite place to visit in Kawartha Lakes: City hall. It has history, drama in its past, and its architecture is wonderful with the high ceilings, mouldings and graceful arches. Otherwise there are many beautiful places in our City that are so lovely they take your breath away.

Ward One – Emmett Yeo

The Last Canadian, by William C. Heine. A 70s Cold War apocalyptic story, it’s been many years since I read this one, but it’s one of my favourites.

Kingdom of Heaven. I’ve watched this several times and still love it! Dynamite cast and great story loosely based on true events.

There are many, but one of my faves is the Altberg Wildlife Sanctuary Nature Reserve, located at 4164 Monck Road. The largest nature reserve in Ontario Nature’s reserve system, it’s a great place for a walk and a few geocaches on the way. 

Ward Two – Pat Warren

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer. It is a lovely book that weaves together ecology, scientific knowledge and indigenous wisdom so you learn to cherish nature even more.

O Lucky Man, starring Malcolm McDowell, Helen Mirren and Alan Price from The Animals, who added all the great music.

I love to visit Kawartha Settlers’ Village and am amazed to see all the great changes and exhibits come to life since its beginnings. It shows how volunteerism can make wonderful things happen in a community.

 Ward Three – Mike Perry

Really cheesy spy novels are my guilty pleasure. And if they involve the American presidency and the CIA, even better. Tom Clancy or worse. I mean, if you can’t buy it at the drugstore or the airport, is it really even a book? 

The Matrix is a favourite for sure. To me it’s all about what’s real, what might not be, and is a deep comment on society and existence.

Anywhere with my kids Gabe and Abigail. No matter where we go, the beach or museum in Fenelon, hiking at Ken Reid Conservation Area or swimming at Crane Bay, it’s always the “funnest” place in Kawartha Lakes when they are with me.

Ward 4 – Dan Joyce

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold by John le Carré and other international espionage works of his are my favourite. It helps he was both an M15 and M16 agent in real life, giving his works an authentic feel.

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s NestApocalypse Now and Das Boot come to mind. I rarely watch a movie twice but these I have enjoyed a few times over the years so they must be favourites!

Ken Reid Conservation Area. Growing up rural surrounded by forest, it’s my nearby go-to to immerse myself in quiet solitude and bond with trees. 

Ward Five – Eric Smeaton

Shoeless Joe — a must-read for a host of reasons, including that at the end, you ponder “Someone actually wrote this?” (Kind of like Catch 22 or A Prayer for Owen Meanie Oops — plugged two more?!) An incredible classic even if you’re not a baseball fan (which I am!).

Field of Dreams. Perfect casting, beautiful script. To have the courage to even touch Shoeless Joe and consider a creative adaptation for the screen is extremely daring.

Woodville sale barn. The drive out is beautiful, the memories I share with my family of all those Saturday mornings, great grilled cheese! A true Kawartha experience, with wonderful, genuine, hard-working families.

Ward Six – Ron Ashmore

1984 by George Orwell. I remember reading it when I was young and never thought it would come to fruition. Some aspects of the book are becoming reality. Required reading for everyone.

2001: A Space Odyssey. I always thought it was ahead of its time. A movie with excellent imagery and effects.

I really find Victoria Falls in northern Kawartha Lakes an incredible place to visit. One of a kind natural treasure.

Ward 7 – Charlie McDonald

Biographies of my favourite sport celebrities from soccer players such as Pelé to hockey legends like Wayne Gretzky. These books show how they endured all of the challenges of becoming their best in their sport.

The Sound Of Music. It’s a classic that we used to watch as a family. I think the reason this movie is so special to me is that it became a memorable time that my mom and I would share. I really miss those moments together. 

The Trent-Severn Waterway, from taking my kids tubing, wakeboarding or just driving my seadoo or boat admiring how lucky we are to have such so many beautiful lakes and rivers in our backyard no matter where you are located. 

Ward Eight – Tracy Richardson

I read a book a week, but one I still feel the impacts from is Still Alice by Lisa Genova. 

The Notebook.

All our conservation areas and trails, as I’m an avid walker and hiker.


  1. Wallace says:

    1984 and Fahrenheit 451 should be required reading for everyone.

  2. D'Arcy McGee says:

    An interesting cross section of opinion,many of which I endorse. Think I`ll retain this info,as it provides a little insight into our veterans & newcomers to council

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