Tackaberry Times
Milton Ontario & Escarpment Attractions

A magnitude of natural attractions, yours for the taking.  This natural wonder in our backyard hails countless parks, pristine lakes, nature trails, a 500 year old Indian village, waterfalls and glacial water holes.  Family events include the Farmers' Market, Steam Era, Country Heritage Park, the Ontario Renaissance Festival, the Halton Region Museum and the Milton Fall Fair.  For those more energetic, there is harness racing at the Mohawk Raceway or hiking the Bruce Trail, Canada's oldest and longest footpath.

Andrew's Scenic Acres  (905) 878-5807

Farm family fun, luscious fruit and vegetables. Pick-your-own or ready-picked. Playground, animal corral and wagon rides.

Chudleigh's  (905) 878-2725

An entertaining taste of the country and family entertainment are presented at this pick-your-own farm, brimming with apples, sweet corn, and berries, appetizing baked goods, gift shop, and children's play area.

Country Heritage Park  (905) 878-8151

An interactive heritage park depicting the evolution of agriculture and rural life over the last 170 years. With over 30 exhibit buildings and 20,000 artifacts, this 80 acre park offers, school education programs, summer day camps, group tours, special events and attractions, period costumed staff and day tripper programs. A farm and country experience for the whole family! Open year round!

Farmers' Market  (905) 878 0581

The Milton Chamber of Commerce operates the weekly Saturday morning event from May through October and boasts that it is one of Ontario's best outdoor Farmers' Markets without exception. Operates May through October.

Halton Region Museum  (905) 875-2200

Situated in the heart of Kelso Conservation Area, the Halton Region Museum is the centre for exploring Halton's natural and cultural heritage.  Nestled beneath the Niagara Escarpment, the Museum site was a pioneer homestead founded by the Alexander Family in 1836.

Halton County Radial Railway Museum   1-519-856-9802

Experience the nostalgia of our Steam Era Days beginning with a parade down Main Street. Take an exhilarating ride on an old-fashioned train at the just north of Milton. Don't miss the opportunity to join the enthusiastic fans at Mohawk Raceway for the fast-paced excitement of harness racing. Visit the local museums and art galleries and soak up the history of the area while you enjoy the beautiful grounds.

Hornby Glen Golf Course Inc.  (905) 878-3421

18 hole pay as you play golf course with licensed snack bar and banquet facilities.

Mohawk Racetrack  1-(800)-675 RACE

Mohawk Racetrack is located a 25 minute drive west of Toronto, resides on a 450-acre tract of land surrounded by woodlands of spruce, cedar, pine and birch, in the village of Campbellville. Just 1/4 mile north of Highway 401 on the Guelph Line is where many of North America's champion harness horses compete.

Ontario Electric Railway Historical Association  1-519-856 9802

Operator of the Halton County Radial Railway a Streetcar Museum with a difference, with 3km rides on historic streetcars.

Ontario Renaissance Festival. 1-(800) 734-3779

Thrill to the excitement of an authentic jousting event, enjoy outdoor comedy, drama and musical performances, and browse through the artisan booths at the  Costumed characters and special dignitaries, including King Henry VIII, portray 16th-century times all summer long for your entertainment pleasure.

Ontario Steam & Antique Preservers Association   (905) 878-6576

Steam Era at the Milton Fairgrounds. Working antiques of yesteryear.

Screamfest at White Ostrich Farm  (519) 856-1487

After Dark Productions designs and runs the Haunted Halloween attraction Screamfest at  White Ostrich Farm in Rockwood, Ontario Canada.

Slots at Woodbine Racetrack  (416) 675-1101

Enjoy a winning experience at our slots. It is home to over 1700 slot machines within a 56,000 square foot themed gaming area, which depicts the birth of Horseracing and the Italian Renaissance era.

Springridge Farm   (905) 878-4908

Unique farm market, brimming with seasonal fruit, baking, preserves, decorator items and gifts; with farm animals, children's play area and birthday parties.

White Rock Ostrich Farm  (519) 856-1487

A unique farm market offering frozen ostrich meats, recipes, a gift shop and wagon rides.
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                                    It's difficult to find any one element                                         that defines Milton and sets it apart from other towns. Milton's Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Sandy Martin invites visitors "to discover why Milton boasts that the destination ... is the beginning in a location that makes us the envy of communities in the Greater Toronto Area."

Milton can best be described as a "successful blend of both old and new, of town and country, of families and businesses". It's population of 33,000 enjoys this distinct community that offers small town living with a metropolitan flair. Residents take pride in the parklands, conservation areas and recreational facilities where they ski and snowboard in the winter, and swim, sail, and hike in the summer. As "a place where friends gather", Milton's vision is to be the best of town and country in Ontario.

Milton's come a long way since Jasper and Sarah Martin built the grist mill on Sixteen Mile Creek around which the community was based in 1821. This mill was quickly followed by a mill pond, a saw mill, an ashery and a small store as Jasper's business expanded. The community of approximately sixty people was known as "Martin's Mills" throughout Trafalgar.

The community weathered the early demises of Jasper and Sarah Martin and grew to a population of over 100 people in 1837, when a meeting was called for the purpose of renaming the town. Jasper's four sons, John, Joseph, Edward and William, who had carried on with their father's enterprises, suggested Milton, after their partiality to the poet John Milton. Thus Martin's Mills became Milton, with a post office established in George Brown's general store.

Milton grew quickly with the population rising to over 300 people by the year 1851. The economic structure began to shift from grist milling to saw milling as the market for wood in the boat industry overseas rose. Milton's rich agricultural area led to economically successful farms and a growing number of cattle raising farms.

The mid 1850's brought a period of change and new growth to Milton. On June 14, 1853, an Act of Parliament split the united counties of Halton and Wentworth, leading to the necessity of choosing one of Halton's villages for the seat of government. This seat and resulting county buildings were constructed in Milton in 1855 on land previously owned by Hugh Foster. Hugh Foster gave the county four acres as a free grant and made additional acres available at a cost of 50 pounds per acre.

Having the county court building and gaol located in Milton impacted strongly on it's growth and strength of it's economy. New businesses were plentiful and Martin's Grist Mill, after being gutted by fire and rebuilt, continued to be a high employing business. Industry flourished in Milton. In 1855, "Joseph Brothers Foundry" manufactured threshing machines, combines, reapers, and mowers. A market was found all over Canada for their patented "Milton Threshing Machine".

Officially selected as the county seat in 1857, Milton also received it's official status as an incorporated town that year. 1865 saw the completion of the Town Hall, a building which has been preserved and updated and is still in use today.

Milton continued to grow and to prosper, with the railway coming to town in 1879, a piped water system in 1887 and the introduction of hydro-electric power in the early 1900's. (The latter came about thanks mostly to men like W. Dick who contributed the necessary funds.)

An ideal site for industrial location, Milton drew the attention of P.L. Robertson, whose "Robertson Screw Factory", built in 1909, still stands. Mr Robertson's patented "sockethead screw" created such a demand that by 1930 almost 20 % of the total working force in Milton was employed at the Robertson Plants.

The 1950's brought another industrial and economic rebirth to Milton, largely as a result of the construction of Highway 401 and the ease with which large industries could base themselves in Milton.

Today, Milton is a thriving and unique town. It's population of 33,000 is expected to grow to 80,000 by 2011. Modern and revitalized, Milton still honours it's history and the people who made Milton what it is today. History has been captured in books by historians such as Jim Dills and William E. Cook. Mr. Cook's book "Milton, Welcome to Our Town" was the predominant source of research for this article. Looking around Milton, the sight of Martin Street, Hugh Foster Hall and W.I. Dick School pay homage to the past. Downtown Milton preserves the old fashioned flavour of Victorian architecture, and restored buildings, while offering unique shops, specialty boutiques and trendy restaurants. For Mayor Gordon Krantz, Milton offers much of what anyone could look for in a hometown. He cites the recreational facilities, outstanding education opportunities (including a proposed Sheridan College campus), high tech industries, along with an environment that includes fresh air, fresh water and a moderate climate as some of the aspects that set Milton apart. "We really do have the best of both worlds here," Mayor Krantz explains. "We have the rural lifestyle while being on the edge of urban Toronto." Lifelong resident Donna Coulter couldn't agree more. "It's the best place to live," the 1998 Citizen of the Year says. "There are all sorts of good things to look forward to each year...the Corn Fest, Steam Era, Fall Fair and Farmer's Market. Everyday you see the friends that you've made over the years. In one way, that will change as more people move here, but those people will find out they love Milton because of the people in it and the open hearts they have. It's the people who make the town and Milton will always be a friendly town."

With it's proposed development and population growth, Milton is once again poised on the edge of change and adapting once more. Growth is no stranger here, in this town that has never stopped evolving and drawing people since 1821. It's strong foundation of friendly faces, historical preservation and a willingness to adapt make Milton uniquely equipped to face whatever the future holds.