Have you ever heard the phrase “The Land Between”? Did you know that most of The Kawarthas exist in The Land Between? Did you know that The Land Between stretches across a major portion of Ontario right over to Couchiching? Have you ever driven north from Peterborough to Buckhorn or Burleigh Falls and noticed the sudden change in landscape?
A national non-profit organization and several partners have produced a documentary film called “The Land Between”, which will premiere in Lakefield on July 26.
The Land Between is what ecologists call an “ecotone”: a transitional area of vegetation between two different plant communities, such as forest and grassland. The Land Between ecotone lies between the Canadian Shield and the St. Lawrence Lowlands, stretching across south-central Ontario from Georgian Bay to Kingston. In the central and eastern parts, it runs just north or south of Highway #7. This landscape is less rugged than in the near-north, but not as flat and arable as the south. Here, you may notice more open areas and exposed bedrock in shades of grey and pink. Looking further you will see that the landscape undulates in patterns of low to high and wet to dry. It has fewer roads than areas to the south, small dispersed communities, scattered farm lands between woods, and a diversity of outdoor enthusiasts. What you are seeing is The Land Between!
The Land Between is home to a host of overlapping species from the north and the south, which has encouraged sharing between First Nations cultures for thousands of years. But European settlers couldn’t figure out what to do with its ever-changing patchwork of rock barrens, rivers, lakes and marshlands. It wasn’t until the Victorian fascination with “wilderness” that The Land Between found a place in the collective psyche of Canadians — when people gave parts of it names like “Muskoka” and “The Kawarthas”. And it’s only recently that recreational use and urban aggregate needs have placed this biologically diverse region under threat.
“The Land Between” documentary — the result of a two-year process — explores the story of The Land Between and some of the different ways that people have interacted with this landscape over time. The project is a collaboration between the Ontario Visual Heritage Project and The Land Between Circle. A DVD will be available for purchase on The Land Between website at www.thelandbetween.ca later this year.
Enjoy this short (yet fascinating!) trailer promoting the documentary and plan to see the entire film in Lakefield on July 26.
“The Land Between” premieres on Thursday, July 26, 2012 at Bryan Jones Theatre in Lakefield College School. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the film begins at 7:45 p.m. There is no cost to see the film, but seating will be on a “first-come, first-served” basis, so arrive early and bring your friends!