Bob and Erika of Kimbergill
By Stephanie Park
Some people are lucky. Lucky in love, lucky in creating the life they always wanted, lucky in obtaining true happiness. Bob and Erika are a true example of two people that are fortunate enough to fall in love in many ways and many times in their lives.
As high school sweethearts, the first fall was when they saw each other and immediately fell in love. Their second plunge was in 1991 when they laid eyes on the valley and quickly became smitten with the area. Erika explains that "it was love at first site like our history." Now, after forty five years of marriage and creating their ideal home, Bob and Erika are truly grateful for the various forms of love in their lives.
After living in the Brampton/Bramalea area for many years, Bob and Erika decided to relocate to Beaver Valley. Erika speaks highly of her experience raising children in Brampton/Bramalea, but describes the recent influx in size as diminishing the overall peacefulness of the city. In planning their move to a place of greater tranquility, they drew a circle on a map that covered an hour and a half distance between their new location and their old home and quickly discovered Beaver Valley.
Erika and Bob both describe the proximity to their former home and their family in Brampton/Bramalea as a crucial factor in their decision to move to a remote area that is still conveniently close to their family, friends and all of the amenities they desire.
Bob describes their move as a way for him to "come back to my roots" after growing up in a farm in the Tillsonburg area.
Retiring from Ontario Hydro in 1993, Bob closed one chapter of his life and opened another. He founded his company called "Kimbergill," named as a hybrid of their new life in Kimberley and their last name. When Bob and Erika aren't busy with their company, they fill their days with a wide variety of activities. Bob enjoys playing hockey in Thornbury, motorcycling with friends close by and traveling the world. Erika is a member of many groups in the area, including a knitting, scrap booking and nature walking group. During the winter months, Bob and Erika also enjoy snowshoeing together.
The exuberant couple fills their weekends with family and friends as they are close to family members in the city and friends nearby. With four grandchildren that "love to explore the area and go to the beaches," they are thankful to live in a place that their grandchildren and children enjoy visiting. When they don't have visitors for the weekend, Bob and Erika have a Sunday routine that they much enjoy. Depending on the season, Bob plays hockey or motorcycles in the morning and then goes out for breakfast with friends. After a couple hours of yard work to maintain their vast property, they meet friends for dinner. One of their favourite restaurants to visit in the area is the Flying Chestnut.
When asked what events nearby they have yet to experience, they both hesitated as they have already experienced a great deal of the local entertainment. However, they are hoping to attend more horse shows at Cedar Run in the future and to participate in The Emancipation Days taking place in Owen Sound this August.
They are both involved in numerous organizations and have contributed a great deal of time and effort into volunteering. Erika claims that volunteering has opened many doors to meeting new people that are local to the area or that have recently moved here. Social activities greatly eased their transition to the area and Erika states that "I feel a real connection to the history of the place because I know the people." The local people are one of the many reasons that Erika loves her life in Beaver Valley. She claims that "it has really helped us feel at home to know the local people."
When asked what other aspects have contributed to the love of Beaver Valley, Bob and Erika answered without hesitation. Bob focused on the privacy aspect in stating that "I like the fact that you are eight hundred feet off the road and it is private." Erika claimed that "we love this area for all the things that we can do here like our sports, the nature of it, the proximity to the bay and to our former home where our children live." Showing much gratitude for the geographical elements of the region, Erika stated that "we have everything - the water, the hills, the biking roads, you name it." They both share an undying appreciation for the beauty of the area and the hospitality of the people that reside within it.
Erika truly encapsulated their happiness in the Beaver Valley area when she answered that she loves this area "because it is home."