Tiny is a township, part of Simcoe County in south-central Ontario, Canada. The Township of Tiny can be found in the Southern Georgian Bay region and is approximately 43 miles long or 160 square miles. While the regular population is fairly small, the region is a popular summer destination both for tourism and cottagers.
The township comprises the communities of Allenwood Beach, Ardmore Beach, Balm Beach, Belle-Eau-Claire Beach, Bluewater Beach, Cawaja Beach, Cedar Point, Clearwater Beach, Cove Beach, Crescent Beach, Coutenac Beach, Deanlea Beach, Dorion's Corner, East Tay Point, Edmore Beach, Georgian Heights, Georgian Highlands, Georgian Sands Beach, Georgina Beach, Gibson, Ishpiming Beach, Kettle's Beach, Kingwood Acres, Lafontaine, Lafontaine Beach, Mary Grove, Mountain View Beach, Nottawaga Beach, Ossossane Beach, Perkinsfield, Rowntree Beach, Sandcastle Beach, Sandy Bay, Sawlog Bay, Silver Birch Beach, Sloane Point, Sunset Bay Estates, Thunder Beach, Tiny Beach, Toanche, Wahnekewaning Beach, Wendake Beach, Woodland Beach, Wyebridge, Wyevale and Wymbolwood Beach.
The township was named by Elizabeth Posthuma Gwillim, wife of Sir John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada for her Pekinese lapdog. Gwillim named three adjoining townships for her three dogs, Tiny, Tay and Flos (now Springwater Township).
The history of Tiny Township reflects its three founding cultures: Native, French and British. Located within Wendake, the historical homeland of the Huron people, the region is closely tied to early missionary exploration of the region, including the Jesuit mission of Sainte-Marie among the Hurons in nearby Midland. (See also Canadian Martyrs.) The township is also the location of an important archaeolgocial site, the 17th century ossuary of the community of Ossossane, capital of the Huron Confederacy, and once the largest native settlement north of Mexico.
In 1798, the British government purchased the land in the area and soon after established a naval base at Penetanguishine. By the mid 1800s, families from Quebec began moving to the Tiny Township area for the cheap and fertile land to farm. Today, the Tiny Township area is still very much a bilingual (French and English) area of Ontario, and is one of 25 municipalities in Ontario designated for bilingual government services under the French Language Services Act. In honour of the region's French history, Lafontaine hosts the annual Le Festival du Loup, a festival of francophone music and culture which celebrates the death of a wolf that terrorised the village in the 1800s, which takes place in July.
Lafontaine was originally called Sainte-Croix (French for Holy Cross) due to many large crosses found in the area that were planted by the Jesuits. It was renamed Lafontaine to honor the politician Louis-Hippolyte Lafontaine, one of the early Joint Premiers of the Province of Canada.
Tiny Township is located between Severn Sound and Nottawasaga Bay, at the southernmost tip of Georgian Bay. The region is home to Awenda Provincial Park, the Tiny Marsh Provincial Wildlife Area and the Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre, which is an important nesting ground for Trumpeter Swans, as well as an extensive network of wooded hiking trails.
The township's fire protection services are provided by the Township of Tiny Fire and Emergency Services. The service has a complement of 95 firefighters operating 15 pieces of fire apparatus from five stations located in Lafontaine, Wyevale, North West Basin, Wyebridge and Woodland Beach. The township falls within the jurisdiction of the Ontario Provincial Police and is policed by members of the Southern Georgian Bay detachment.