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Ottawa to crack down on marijuana advertising

Health Canada will actively monitor for marijuana advertising violators
Morgan Lowrie, The Canadian Press

MONTREAL - Health Minister Rona Ambrose ordered a crackdown on groups that illegally advertise marijuana and re-stated the Conservative party's pledge to keep storefront dispensaries illegal Saturday on the eve of the expected launch of a federal election campaign.

"Today I directed Health Canada to create a task force to crack down on illegal marijuana advertising," Ambrose said in a statement.

"This task force will ensure that those who engage in such illegal activities are stopped, and should these illegal activities continue, promptly referred to law enforcement."

Tories launch attack ads against Mulcair

Tories launch anti-Mulcair attack ads on eve of federal election call
Joan Bryden, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - The Conservatives are finally training their sights on NDP Leader Tom Mulcair just as Prime Minister Stephen Harper is about to plunge the country into an 11-week election on Sunday.

After carpet-bombing the airwaves for weeks with ads asserting that Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is "just not ready," the ruling party is poised to start the official campaign with two new television ads targeting Mulcair.

The ads portray the NDP leader as an unethical opportunist who looks out for himself at taxpayers' expense, a "career politician" the country can't afford.

Passengers leave hospital after B.C. bus crash

B.C. ministry says upgrades to highway where bus crashed are 'critical'
The Canadian Press

CHASE, B.C. - British Columbia's transportation ministry says it has moved aggressively to widen a dangerous stretch of highway where a tour bus crash killed one man and sent dozens to hospital on Friday.

The head-on collision between a car and a private charter bus filled with Korean tourists happened in a winding, rock-faced area known as Hoffman's Bluff, just south of Chase in B.C.'s Interior.

The two-lane stretch is notorious for collisions and the province announced earlier this year it would be upgraded to four lanes to improve safety.

Fiery car accident kills 4 in rural Quebec

Four dead, two injured after fiery car crash in Quebec's eastern townships
The Canadian Press

GRANBY, - Quebec provincial police say a fiery crash involving a tanker truck and three cars Friday night has resulted in the death of four people outside Montreal.

Police say the four victims were all in the same vehicle and are likely a Montreal-area family.

The car was completely consumed by flames after becoming trapped under the fuel tanker near Granby, Quebec.

Two other cars were involved in the accident, resulting in one injury and a woman being treated for shock.

The driver of the tanker truck sustained mild injuries.

Topless rally comes to Waterloo, Ont.

Rally in support of women's right to go topless takes place in Waterloo, Ont.
The Canadian Press

WATERLOO, Ont. - A rally and march organized by three sisters who were stopped by a police officer for biking topless a week ago was held Saturday in Waterloo, Ont.

Dozens of topless women — and men — attended the trio's "Bare With Us" rally at Waterloo Town Square, meant to educate the public about women's right to be topless if they so choose.

Ontario premier cuts down early election call

Ontario premier rails against Harper for anticipated early election call
The Canadian Press

PENETANGUISHENE, Ont. - One of Canada's most prominent politicians is lambasting the idea of an early federal election call as "unnecessary" and an affront to taxpayers who will foot the bill.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne said Saturday that it would be "unfortunate" if the federal Conservatives drop the writ early as expected this weekend.

She made the comments during a news conference in Penetanguishene where she was visiting a local festival.

Montreal dig to shed light on early prison life

Montreal archeological dig to explore ruins of early prison near city hall
Morgan Lowrie, The Canadian Press

MONTREAL - The City of Montreal is hoping that an upcoming archeological dig will unearth some old secrets, including artifacts from a former convent and 18th century prison whose ruins lie under city hall.

The elegant limestone building that currently houses city hall sits on a site that was once home to a Jesuit convent, which was seized by the Crown after the 1763 conquest of New France and transformed into a jail around 1768.

App helps users find beaches with safe water

Ontario app helps users find beaches with the safes
Michelle Mark, The Canadian Press

TORONTO - Canadians looking to take the plunge in safe, clean waters this long weekend can use an app to scour beaches across the country with the best and worst water quality.

The Waterkeeper Swim Guide app monitors the water quality of more than 7,000 beaches across North America, the Baja Peninsula and New Zealand, all aggregated from data contributed by local waterkeepers.

Krystyn Tully, co-founder of the app that was launched by the Lake Ontario Waterkeeper in 2011, said the August long weekend is always the busiest time of year for the app's use.

Tories top money list, but NDP surges to 2nd

On campaign's eve, Tories atop fundraising list, but NDP leaps to second place
The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Elections Canada says the Conservative party raised $7.4 million from 45,532 donors in the second quarter of the year.

That's up from the $6.3 million they collected from 41,161 donors in the first three months of the year.

But it's the NDP that really flexed its fundraising muscles, taking in $4.5 million from 48,314 donors in the second quarter — its best quarterly showing ever, both in terms of money and the number of donations.

PM set to launch marathon election campaign

Election campaign set to break records for cost, length, nastiness
Joan Bryden, The Canadian Press

OTTAWA - Stephen Harper is set to launch the country Sunday into a federal election campaign that promises to rewrite Canadian history books.

Costliest campaign ever. Longest campaign since 1872. First campaign in which three parties all have a legitimate shot at winning as they line up at the starting gate.

And given those unique circumstances and high stakes, it's an almost certain bet it will also be the most vicious, no-holds-barred campaign Canadians have ever witnessed.

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