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SPRING 2017

Art’s Big Night Out

Escape from

RWANDA

Lovepreet Deo Courage + Strength

= AMAZING!

One Airdrie woman’s harrowing story

TASTE AIRDRIE Dish up the best flavours in town

SHE-preneur

SUCCESS Entrepreneurs that shine

7th Annual

AMAZING AIRDRIE WOMEN Stories that inspire

airdrielife.com


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Contributors We have some new faces joining us in 2017!

Dawn Smith is an award-winning editor and journalist whose work has appeared in publications across the country. She is the mother of two teens and is passionate about the community of Airdrie, which she has called home since 2001. Dawn loves telling the stories of the people and organizations that make our city great. Claudia Sasse is a Spanish bilingual and resource teacher working on her master’s degree in elementary education. Born and raised in Brazil, she moved to Canada in 2004 with her Canadian husband. With a teenage daughter and a “senior” dog her home is “filled with happiness every day.” Claudia is thrilled to share her educational work and parenting experiences with other fellow teachers and parents. Lori Kuffner has worked in the non-fiction world for more than 30 years. She writes freelance and also works in the film industry where she has produced 100-plus documentaries for both national and international broadcasters. Lori also sits on the Wrongful Conviction Day Committee bringing awareness to this cause. At a young age, Jolene Rudisuela discovered her love of writing and telling stories and now hopes to turn those passions into a career. She is currently in her third year of the journalism program at Mount Royal University and is excited to work with airdrielife magazine. Having grown up near Airdrie, Jolene is looking forward to learning lots and getting more involved in the community. Shelley Boettcher is a Calgary-based writer, with a penchant for stories on food, wine and travel. The author of three books on wine, she is also CBC Radio’s national weekend wine columnist. Her work has appeared in newspapers and magazines around the world, including The Guardian, the Toronto Star, WestJet Magazine and The Globe and Mail.  Kathryn Zondag is the owner of Vine Life Wine Services in Airdrie, offering wine tasting, education, and special events. She is a certified sommelier, holder of an advanced certificate in wine and spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) in London, England, and lover of wines from Alsace.

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PUBLISHER/EDITOR

Sherry Shaw-Froggatt

COPY EDITOR

Vanessa Peterelli

DESIGN MANAGER

Kim Williams

CONTRIBUTORS

Seline Badel-Wong, Shay Barker, Sergei Belksi, Amanda Benner, Ayesha Clough, Charlene Codio, Jill Iverson, Kurtis Kristianson, Lori Kuffner, Britton Ledingham, Kristy Reimer, Claudia Sasse, Dave Seefeldt, Sherry Shaw-Froggatt, Dawn Smith, Shilo Storey, Carman Thiessen, Wyatt Tremblay, Selenia Vollmin, Meghan West, Kathryn Zondag

James Mahoney , Jolene Rudisuela

INTERNS

DIRECTOR OF SALES

Wendy Pratt

PRINTING Transcontinental DISTRIBUTION Sharie Tanner CONTACT US EDITORIAL sherry@frogmediainc.ca ADVERTISING wendy@frogmediainc.ca WHERE TO FIND US airdrielife is delivered to all homes in Airdrie and surrounding areas. If you do not receive an issue please contact sherry@frogmediainc.ca airdrielife is also available at more than 100 locations around the city. You can also find airdrielife in every showhome in the city, CrossIron Mills and at more than 100 locations in Calgary. airdrielife is published quarterly by Frog Media Inc. with the co-operation of the City of Airdrie Economic Development Department.

VOLUME 14, NUMBER 1

ISSN 1916-355X

Contents copyright 2017 by Frog Media Inc. May not be reproduced without permission. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents of any advertisement, and all representations of warranties made in such advertising are those of the advertiser and not of the publisher. EDITORIAL POLICY airdrielife editorial is not for sale. Editorial is completely independent from advertising, and no special editorial consideration or commitment of any kind can form any part of the advertising agreement. All editorial inquiries must be directed toward the editor. A copy of Frog Media Inc. Writers’ Guidelines can be downloaded from the editorial page on our website. airdrielife does not accept unsolicited submissions. Freelance writers and photographers interested in assignments are asked to send an inquiry, with samples from at least three published magazine articles, to editorial@airdrielife.com


editor’s note

The airdrielife team behind our Amazing Airdrie Women photo shoot, pictured with paintings by artist Veronica Funk. To my right, clockwise from top: Veronica, who’s inspired by Helen Keller; writer Lori Kuffner with Rosa Parks; photographer Kristy Reimer with Sacagawea; and stylist/makeup artist Sarika Mehta with Coco Chanel. I chose to be pictured alongside Meryl Streep!

I love this time of year! I buy tulips by the armload and fill my home with the promise of spring. It’s a visual reminder to remain hopeful, despite knowing there are probably a few major dumps of snow and resulting traffic snafus on the way. This issue is always an emotional one for our team, because we learn so much about the women in our community whose names have been put forth by our readers to be showcased in the Amazing Airdrie Women feature that begins on page 103. It moves me every single year because we are introduced to some incredible, well, simply amazing women who are making a difference at home, at work, and in the community at large. It seems we can’t run short of stories about amazing women as evident by the 31 women we feature this year. When we do the photo shoots in January, it’s my first chance to meet each nominee face to face. It is one of the highlights of my whole year and a reminder that this whole idea, which started in 2011, is in fact one of the reasons airdrielife exists. But no one left a bigger impression on me than Lovepreet Deo. The gorgeous face on the cover of this issue belongs to someone with cerebral palsy. CAN YOU EVEN TELL from this image? Of course not; Lovepreet looks like the vivacious and smart young woman that she really is despite her physical limitations. If you flipped back to the cover after reading this, it reinforces the massive stereotypes that we unfortunately all have about people with disabilities. If we showed her with her walker would you have gazed into those sparkling eyes? Lovepreet goes to the gym up to five

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times a week. I know that’s a heck of a lot more than me and most people in general. She is the epitome of amazing. On a very cold night it took three of us to assist Lovepreet from the studio door to the Handibus. We had to lift her walker over snow and ice and keep her steady on the uneven walkway. When the bus drove away we all looked at each other in disbelief – she does this every day? And the worst part? She kept apologizing to us! Lovepreet, as I said that night, you don’t EVER have to apologize. People who look the other way when they see someone with a disability are the ones who should apologize. In another amazing story, we interview Christelle Hitimana on escaping Rwanda. While Christelle is not part of the nominee feature, she darn well could have been; her resilience is awe-inspiring. I marched in the Calgary Women’s March on Washington weeks later with my daughter. I was marching for women of all abilities, race, religion and sexual orientation. I was thinking of both Lovepreet and Christelle that day. I hope you find the stories and profiles in this issue inspire you to “be the change you want to see in the world.” My special thanks to my AMAZING team of women (and men!) who made this issue possible.

Sherry Shaw-Froggatt Editor and Publisher

Look for this icon throughout the magazine


Thank you for once again choosing McKee Homes as Airdrie’s Best Homebuilder

The exciting new Master Planned community of Vista Crossing is where our Sperrin II calls home. A short trip up the QEII highway, this right-sized (1396 sq ft) bungalow features two bedrooms, two baths and a double attached garage, its beauty eclipsed only by its location on the edge of Crossfield, which gives way to a stunning view of the Rocky Mountains to the West.

DESIGN INSPIRATION

CARLINGFORD RT

Empty-nesters or those looking to rightsize their lives, rejoice! Striking the balance between spacious and affordable, the design of this house was based around a real life couple who, after retirement, filled their lives with adventure and travel. Still wanting a comfortable, well appointed home to come back to in between destinations, they opted for functional, well apportioned spaces that promised everything you need and nothing you don’t. The end result is a home that just feels right, from the optimized efficiency of its office/guest bedroom to the combining of the laundry room and mud room (a simple notion but oh, so effective).

A waterway forming part of Ireland’s North/South border, Carlingford Lough offers some of the most beautiful scenery the country has to offer. From this, we named our Bayside show home the Carlingford RT and seek to equal this ideal. Spacious at 2555 sq ft, and very nicely appointed with plenty of functional living area and a tandem garage, we like to think of the Carlingford RT as a timeless beauty. Centrally located in Airdrie, you can see it for yourself at 1347 Bayside Drive.

DESIGN INSPIRATION One of Grace’s style faves (her personal homeof-choice is a Carlingford), the Carlingford RT was designed with young, hip, upwardly mobile couples in mind. Couples who love the idea of a downtown loft, but want to raise their children in a more family oriented suburban setting. Taking styling and material cues from innercity dwellings—think brick, stone, steel—Grace and her team tapped into the mindset of people who travel, enjoy live music and seek out new experiences in life, and personified it in a home. With plenty of storage for all life’s pursuits, and individualized spaces for family members (check out the space-themed kids room!), the Carlingford RT is modern but comfortable and sure to win any family’s hearts and minds.

Pharmasave Amazing Heart

SPERRIN II Wendy Contant Wendy Contant has been referred to as “the Spirit of Airdrie.” She moved to Airdrie 30 years ago and has made volunteering part of her life. “If there is something happening in Airdrie like the Summer Games or big gala events, most likely Wendy will be there with a welcoming smile,” says Deb Salmon. Sarika Mehta cannot say enough about this nominee either. When Mehta moved to Airdrie and was starting a business, Contant connected her to the community. “Wendy went above and beyond,” says Mehta. “Without her, my business may not have survived.” . “I volunteer because I love the social aspect and I learn so much from each event,” says Contant, who after helping out with triathlons became a runner herself. Contant supports other charities, too, but it is Bethany Airdrie which holds her heart. She got to know the staff and residents at Bethany when her mother was a resident. After her mother’s death, Contant continued to visit and became a weekly volunteer, helping with a variety of events. She says she loves the hugs and warmth both the staff and residents provide. “Getting that welcome and those hugs is way more than I give,” says Contant. “It really fills those empty places in my heart.”

Wendy chose singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks

Leanne Grenier

ANTRIM Live life a cut above in Hillcrest, Airdrie’s elevated community. It’s where you’ll find the Antrim, a two story, 2025 sq ft home that boasts three bedrooms, two and a half baths and a double attached garage, all in close proximity to W.H. Croxford High School, Coopers Crossing K-3 school, and the soon to be completed Windsong Heights K-7 school (due to open Fall 2017).

DESIGN INSPIRATION How does one sum up the Antrim? In short, personalized and eclectic. With a den at the back of the house and plenty of usable living area spread over two floors, Grace’s vision was for every member of the family to feel they had a dedicated space. To that end, a variety of themes, colours, materials and artwork— reflecting the differing ages and interests of the people who would potentially live there— introduced personalization to the home. Add to that a seemingly small but undeniably crucial detail: children’s bedrooms are set well apart from the master bedroom so that every member of the family has a space that they can truly call their own.

“For the past 10 years, Leanne Grenier has made many of our dreams possible,” says Emily Marston, reigning queen of the Airdrie Pro Rodeo. Grenier grew up in 4-H and loved the rodeo way of life. After trying out for the title, she begin to chaperone and then became the Airdrie Pro Rodeo Royalty director. “I fell in love with the job,” she says. “I realized if I had won it would have taken me on a different path and I am quite happy with what I am doing.” Since becoming director, Grenier has clocked close to 5,000 volunteer hours supporting the girls during the month-long pageant and then throughout their reign. She has also increased their events from 50 to about 100. “People we talk to,” says Marston, “say this pageant is one of the best.” Besides her love for promoting Airdrie, Grenier says she enjoys watching the girls embrace new opportunities and grow in confidence and independence. “I have different girls each year so I am constantly learning too,” she adds. In addition to her duties with the Airdrie Pro Rodeo, Grenier works full time with Venture Communications in Calgary. Her support for the girls continues well after their reign. “She is such a good friend,” says Marston, “and such a cool lady.”

Leanne chose actor and spirited personality Katharine Hepburn

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

115


Pharmasave Amazing Heart

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE

Nicole Haacke

Nicole chose politician, social activist and author Nellie McClung

“I have always looked up to my mom,” says Caitlin, “and aspired to be her.” Although Caitlin has watched her mom Nicole Haacke give generously to many charities and community events, her favourite is her mother’s “Christmas in July.” Nicole invited family and friends to her birthday and gave them a gift. She even flew in Caitlin’s friends from Toronto who had never seen the Rockies. Besides generosity, Nicole and her husband want their five girls to experience other cultures firsthand. To do this they travel extensively. Nicole is also a Homestay co-ordinator helping foreign students experience Canada. The family also boards many foreign students. “It really opens your world,” says Caitlin, “and plays a big part in our lives.” When the earthquake hit Haiti, Nicole’s daughters collected tents to send overseas. Nicole has also engrained in her girls: “If someone is mean, kill them with kindness.” So when Caitlin was bullied at school, instead of retaliation, she placed positive notes on all the school lockers. The story hit the news and for two years Nicole travelled with Caitlin as she spoke out about her experience. Besides working full time, Nicole and her husband own Niikos Furniture. “My mother has been my rock,” says Caitlin. “She truly is an amazing woman.”

Elaine McKee-Doel President

Founder, Martin McKee

BEHIND THE DESIGN

Erica Hatch Erica Hatch loves helping others. For 14 years she worked as a registered nurse. Then, a few years ago, she decided on a new path. This nominee was always interested in alternative medicine and decided on osteopathy, a unique holistic approach to health care. This new adventure would be a five-year commitment that would take her to Vancouver for six to seven days every month for classroom instruction. Not easy for a mother of two active daughters. Hatch’s husband Derek supported her and ensured their girls would keep to their routine. Says Derek: “My wife is a very driven but loving person.” With one year left in her course, Erica can see the light at the end of the tunnel. When not studying, she still nurses a couple of days a week but has also started a practice in her own home. “I love what I do and I love my clients” says Erica, “and working from home allows me to spend more time with my daughters.” “It is a lot of work,” she adds. “There were some tears, sometimes popcorn for dinner, but it is rewarding to fulfill your dream. “You do not know what you are capable of until you do it,” Erica says.

Thirty years. It seems like both a moment and an age, all at once. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you—to the land developers who believe in us to deliver community visions; to the trade and supplier partners who ensure our quality standards are met and exceeded; to our staff who are dedicated to our mission, customers and company; to all the other professionals and inspectors who help keep our company moving; and finally, thank you to our valued homeowners who have put their trust in us through the years to create the homes they have dreamed of. It is our sincere privilege to work with each and every one of you, doing exactly what we love—building homes for families.

One of the hallmarks of a McKee Home is its distinctive style and design. Our thirty-plus years in business has taught us that every family is unique, and because of this, we feel that so too should be the home they live in. With this in mind we’ve resolved to consult with our customers, allowing them Grace McKee Executive VP to modify an existing floor plan so it better suits their needs and tastes, or even completely customize a design from start to finish. Whatever the level of involvement, customer satisfaction is always our ultimate goal. This thought has been encapsulated in both our mission: crafting exceptional homes for our valued customers, and our vision: to be the most highly sought-after homebuilder in our chosen markets.

homes both practical and functional. And most importantly, ones that truly inspire.

And you can see this in our show homes. Rather than off-therack plans and designs, our executive vice president and head designer Grace McKee uses visualization—imagining, based on experience, the end user and what their requirements/ desires will be—to put forward a range of fully realized show

Presently building in four Airdrie communities—Cooper’s Crossing, Bayside, Ravenswood and Hillcrest—as well as Vista Crossing in Crossfield, this abundance of homes promises something for each individual’s tastes and every different family.

Blending technology and creativity, Grace and her team draw from a wide variety of media for stimulus—media as varied as trade publications, reference websites, old photos, found objects…anything that serves to evoke a sense of who the family is that will ultimately live in the home. A reservoir of information is created, and from this is distilled a cohesive picture of what the layout, design and purpose of each room will be, and how these different rooms will all tie together. The end result is a living, breathing home that should delight visitors, giving them a chance to move through the space and imagine a home their families will enjoy for many years to come. Feedback received from our current show homes indicates that, so far, Grace and her team have been right on the money!

THREE DECADES. COUNTLESS MEMORIES. ONE FOCUS. Using passion, craftsmanship and attention to detail as his blueprint, Martin McKee built his very first house back in 1987. We’ve used these principles to build quality homes and become an integral part of the Airdrie community ever since. Thank you Airdrie for 30 great years!

Erica chose Kenojuak Ashevak, pioneer of modern Inuit art

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Cast your votes online

403-948-6595  mckeehomes.com

BAYSIDE ESTATES ALEXANDRA LARSEN 403-948-7881 | COOPER’S CROSSING NANCY HARRIS 403-948-4635 HILLCREST JENNIFER LASAGA 403-966-8451 | RAVENSWOOD DOUG KIRK 403-980-1092 | CROSSFIELD CHUCK LECLERC 403-542-4352


SPRING INTO A STRAIGHTER

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BE THE FIRST TO SEE THE GATES AT HILLCREST SHOWHOMES Grand Opening March 18th Tudor Elevation

The Gates at Hillcrest offers incredible Manor Townhomes in Airdrie. Choose from a selection of spacious homes from 1,471 – 1,698 sq.ft. For a great price, get a spacious townhome with an attached garage, private landscaped backyard, and no condo fees.

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The Aspen End, Gates At Hillcrest Showhome

Willow Corner, Craftsman

Don’t miss your chance to live at The Gates at Hillcrest. Showhomes will be opening March 18th. For a Virtual Tour of all four floor plans visit mattamyhomes.com/calgary

Manor Townhomes Starting From $319,990 SALES CENTRE 907 Windsong Drive 403-980-8765

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the 103On Cover

Courage defined! Lovepreet Deo does not let cerebral palsy stop her. PHOTO BY KRISTY REIMER

34 SLICE OF LIFE 24 Quiet Strokes

22 SPECIAL FEATURES 31 TASTE Airdrie Our exciting new year-long look at food culture in Airdrie! Where to eat, drink, shop and prepare great meals plus awesome (and tasty) contests with our partners. 55 Wedding Life Our annual look at what’s new for brides-to-be, including a directory of those ready to help plan the perfect day!

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26 Rock & Ready 34 Intersection of Good Food 38 In the Kitchen 41 Art’s Big Night 48 Final Results 52 Winning Look

HOME LIFE 68 Spring Cleanup 70 Village Living 74 Get Growing 76 Slokker Style 78 Sweet Ensuites 82 Midtown Marvels


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92 103

WORK LIFE 88 Moving Mountains 92 She-preneurs

LOCAL LIFE 99 POWER of Women 100 Escape from Rwanda 102 100 Women 103 Amazing Airdrie Women 121 Porcine Producers

COLUMNS & REGULAR FEATURES 44 Events 59 Petlife 60 Parentlife 80 Homelife

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86 Businesslife 95 Financiallife 98 Citylife


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Rockin’ 26 • Tasty 31 • Fit 48


ADVERTORIAL

Buon Appetito!

Anna Marie and Sal Monna, owners, with Chips Kobelt welcome you to Ilforno Ristorante

That’s Italian for enjoy your meal! And that is definitely the reason to head over to Ilforno Ristorante. Nowhere else in Airdrie will you find a full authentic Naples menu made fresh every day. “Nothing is frozen here. You come in, you order, we make it fresh, day in and day out,” says owner Sal Monna, “that’s why I wanted to show in this photo the ingredients we work with. Everything is made just for you.” Only one item is not on the menu anymore, the Ilforno pizzas. “I have to apologize as I know there are customers who miss this, unfortunately it is just not manageable for us anymore,” Sal says wistfully. After 36 years in the restaurant business Sal Monna knows a thing or two about providing the right ambience for a great dining experience. “It’s in the way we treat you. We love our customers.” And the food. Did we mention the food? The luscious tiramisu, the heavenly perfectly balanced tomato sauce, the pillow soft gnocchi are all Anna Marie’s recipes. You can literally taste the passion she has for serving good food when you are wiping up the sauce on your plate with your crusty bread. Joining her in the kitchen is Swiss trained Chips Kobelt, who has studied under Anna Marie’s tutelage for the last five years. He sneaks in his own influences once and while – like his hand smoked salmon tossed into a linguine cream sauce. Sal purchases most of his ingredients through the Italian market in Calgary, sourcing authentic Italian grown and produced products from canned tomatoes to salamis and prosciutto. But the salsiccia sausage is another

Anna Marie secret recipe. Ground fresh from a pork leg and seasoned just right, it is the staple for Napoli dishes like Salsiccia Rigatoni. While the menu is very traditional – with a wide selection of pastas, veal, steak and seafood, Sal says the secret is simply telling the kitchen to take the lead. “We do have plenty of specials all the time, but the best meal you will have is when you call in for a reservation and say to me “Sal feed me” and then Anna Marie gets to bring you a feast from her kitchen. Craving a risotto? Let me know when you book your reservation and risotto is one of your dishes.” The Monnas have been satisfying our cravings for authentic Italian food in Airdrie for 14 years. Their devoted customers have followed them from Bella Italia on the eastside, to Napoli Ristorante by City Hall and now (since 2011) tucked away on the second level of a commercial building off Kings Heights Blvd (just south of the Fire Hall) as Ilforno. Why the hide-away location for Ilforno? “Real Italians know the best little restaurants are always “hidden away”. Like wandering down a cobblestone alleyway in Naples (Monna’s home town), finding Ilforno for some has been a happy accident. Not being street-front helps keep costs down and it’s one of the reasons the absolute best Italian dished in Airdrie are still

reasonably priced. Even the wine which Sal takes great pride in selecting to match the menu is decently priced with most bottles in the $35$45 range. “I pick wines I like,” he laughs because often he will end up sharing a glass with another satisfied table. Ilforno has always been a hot spot for romantic dinners (with a live accordion player on the weekends) and special family gatherings, but in reality Ilforno is a fan favourite any day of the week. Special events for up to 65 guests are very popular with the restaurant where guests enjoy a traditional five course Italian meal replete with antipasti, salad, pasta, a main and then dessert. For two or 22, Ilforno is your home for a perfect night out. Great food, a good bottle of wine and if you’re lucky, Sal might serenade you with a tune. “That’s amore!”

Ilforno Ristorante

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SLICE OF LIFE ARTIST PROFILE

The silent poetry of Darlene Moore STORY BY WYATT TREMBLAY | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI

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D

arlene Moore is an abstract painter who describes her dramatic and vibrant creations as silent poetry. “Everyone sees something different,” says this Airdrie artist. “I might show you a picture I’ve done, and you might say, ‘I see a whale,’ and somebody else will say, ‘I see a guy standing there.’” “It’s like poetry,” she explains, “because it means something different to whoever is looking at it.” Her father, who was an accomplished self-taught artist, inspired Moore. “He was totally colour blind, but did some amazing art – mostly Western scenes.” If he ran into difficulty, she says, her mother would help him pick the right colours. As a child, he encouraged Moore to pursue art. She attended art school, painted unique designer nails for a time, and then discovered decorative art in the late 1990s. This involved painting designs or images on paper-towel holders, chairs and tables. However, it was when she and a friend, Mary Frost, also an artist, went to an arts supply store in Calgary that she saw an abstract painting by Alberta artist Samantha daSilva. “To me, abstract was like disjointed faces. I didn’t like it, but when I saw hers, I just loved it.” “It spoke to me.” daSilva was also an abstract-art instructor, and Moore immediately began attending her classes. “I couldn’t get enough,” she says laughing.

“It means something different to whoever is looking at it” It would give Moore a “large, white canvas,” and the freedom to play with the colours that reflect her feelings about life. “I saw something like the (Calgary) flood, and I just had to go paint about it,” she says. Her work is organic, bold and random, with titles like Forest Fire and Frozen Tundra. The painter has works hanging in Miami and Italy, and will have a large show at Airdrie Public Library this fall. She is also president of the Airdrie Regional Arts Society, which promotes local artists. “We have a lot of amazing artists, but it’s like a close-kept secret.” Moore is currently taking lessons from Wes Jones, an artist and teacher at Bert Church High School, learning the fine detail of realism. “He’s teaching me how to go from a photograph and put it on a canvas.” Which does she prefer? “You know, I’m kinda torn,” she says. “I like the detail of realism, but I also like the freeness of abstract.” “Who knows? I might connect the two. With art, anything goes.” life SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE MUSICIAN PROFILE

Fun with The Martin Project STORY BY WYATT TREMBLAY PHOTOS BY KURTIS KRISTIANSON

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W

hat do you get when three high school students from Airdrie’s St. Martin de Porres form a band? Why, The Martin Project, of course. The band’s members attribute Rick Simon, the school’s now-retired social studies teacher, also a musician, with its creation. “He knew the three of us separately, and said we should play together,” says guitarist Dallon Frunchak. “We didn’t know each other, but we said, ‘Hey, what the heck, why not?’” The band’s name is a tribute to the school. Frunchak, 20, Jason Bennett, 21, and Vincent-Ayanda Ngwenya, 19, have become close friends, and are the creative fuel that ignites this listenable and energetic alternative rock band. Their inspiration may be the likes of Blink-182 and The Strokes, but they have their own distinctive sound. One of their songs, Out of Time, released on the band’s debut EP last year, has been getting a lot of airtime, Frunchak says. The song is a high-energy protest to the shortness of life. The lyrics are strong, driven by Ngwenya’s deep and powerful voice. He plays bass, and writes the lyrics to most of the group’s songs. “My writing comes from a lot of different places,” he says, laughing. “I’ve probably written three songs while doing the dishes.” Doing mundane things frees Ngwenya’s mind to envision how the music and vocals should sound and work together. “He tells stories,” says Frunchak, pointing out that another of the EP’s songs, I’ll be Damned, is about war. “I stay away from relationship songs, though,” chuckles Ngwenya. The Martin Project’s creative process is organic.


SLICE OF LIFE MUSICIAN PROFILE

Dallon Frunchak (guitar), Vincent-Ayanda Ngwenya (bass) and Jason Bennett (drums) of The Martin Project take a break from the cold in Airdrie, Alta.

“He comes in with a song, a guitar part,” says Frunchak of Ngwenya. “He,” Ngwenya points to Bennett, who plays drums, “just starts jammin’ it.” “I start jammin’ on it,” Frunchak jumps in, “And then, ‘Oh, hey, we gotta have lyrics.’” They all laugh. After graduation, the musicians took a break to pursue education – all three are studying business. They recently returned to practicing and writing. “We’re not playing shows every night,” explains Frunchak, “But it’s something we want.” Ngwenya has had an interest in music since he was a child, when his mother bought his first guitar. “My family isn’t musical, but I love it.” Frunchak credits his father with an interest in music, while Bennett comes from a musical family. The trio record in Bennett’s basement, using an online midi tool to mix and finish tracks. They’d like to have another EP out, but their real passion is in playing gigs. “It’s high energy,” explains Ngwenya. “If you see us live, we play very simple,” says Frunchak.

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“(Ngwenya) plugs straight into his bass amp, (Bennett) has a simple drum kit, and I plug my Gibson right into my amp.” “We just set it up, plug it in, and play,” says Bennett. “Simple just sounds good,” observes Frunchak. It’s this pure, straight-up sound that rocked the crowds at Bert Church Theatre during the annual SLAM on AIR songwriting contest last September. “We didn’t win, but we had lots of fun,” says Frunchak, adding that their onstage energy left them sore the day after. “Even if there isn’t a large audience,” adds Bennett. “We just have fun.” For now, the trio is balancing school and music, but playing professionally is not far from their thoughts. “It’s scary, but I would love to,” says Ngwenya. “I would open up my own recording studio,” says Bennett. Frunchak agrees, but: “Realistically, do you get a business degree, or take a risk and really push for the music?” “I don’t know. For now, we’re just having fun with it.” life For an EP, visit soundcloud.com/ themartinproject


SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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Ask about our 2017 promotions and exible building options

PHASE 25 JUST RELEASED! HOMES STARTING FROM THE $500s


SLICE OF LIFE TASTE

STORY BY DAWN SMITH

Welcome to a whole new way to explore the good life in Airdrie! Keep up with the city’s top chefs, foodies and enthusiasts and watch this space regularly for what’s cooking around town, great ideas for your own dinner table or tempting reasons to dine out more often. From fas-cas to farm-to-table, filling your growler or filling your freezer, TASTEairdrie is for foodies! Follow along with TASTEairdrie on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Share your food experiences with our participating partners to win dinner out for a year!

Recipes from your favourite chefs!

EVERYTHING IS FRESH

SEASONAL DISHES A PRIORITY

Burger lovers take note: Abe’s Restaurant, located in Kingsview Market, offers up big, juicy burgers and other classic diner food with a focus on quality. The sleek, modern decor with an open kitchen, where customers can see their meals being prepared, complements the fresh, locally sourced menu offerings. Owner Satish Sappani says customers at the casual, fine-dining restaurant may notice a few changes this spring, with healthier menu options and a switch from counter to full service. What won’t change is the quality Abe’s customers have come to expect. That quality is due to the freshground beef and bison – all locally sourced and never frozen – used to make the classic burgers, with names such as The Mudhead and The Big Lion, for which the restaurant is becoming so popular. “We are very homemade. Everything is fresh,” says Sappani. “People love it because it’s a neighbourhood diner.”

What could be better than a night filled with great food, wine and friends? First & Vine, located on First Avenue, offers a classic bistro experience at lunch, and tapas-style dining – with plates designed to share – taking over the dinner menu. Chef Michael Frayne prides himself on creating seasonal dishes with fresh Alberta-sourced ingredients. “The quality is way better when the ingredients are in the field a day or two before they get to the customer,” says Frayne, noting to support local producers makes sense for both the environment and taste buds. The restaurant’s wine program also reflects First & Vine’s commitment to quality with its focus on single-estate, family-run wineries. Frayne is excited about the local ingredients starting to make their appearance; fresh herbs, greens and produce are sure to inspire the chef this season. “Spring is a chance to cook with a lot of the products we haven’t used all winter,” he says.

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SLICE OF LIFE TASTE

Elevate your expectations Breakfast Brunch Lunch Dinner Late Night Nibbles

Wine bar Beer Ginbucha and yes...coffee ESPRESSO

WINE BAR

Bayside (8th and Yankee)

Abe’s Restaurant A MODERN DINER

IN-HOUSE MANTRA Great food, high-end service and ambience combine to make Hayloft in Airdrie a restaurant destination for many Airdrians. Owner Hoan Nguyen is proud of the restaurant’s seasonal menu, which changes in accordance with the fresh ingredients, sourced as locally as possible. For example, the restaurant get its chicken and pork from farms in Beiseker and Carstairs and is working on a partnership with Airdrie’s Hanson Ranches for fresh beef. Duck from a local producer is also in the works. This freshness, combined with Hayloft’s commitment to preparing everything – from bread to dessert to sauces – in house, adds to the quality and wholesomeness of all the items on the menu. “If you are really thinking about what you are eating and what you are putting in your body, that’s what we care about,” says Nguyen. If you haven’t visited Hayloft yet, consider heading there this spring. The restaurant is kicking off its Power Lunch promotion – customers can be in and out in 45 minutes and be satisfied with a fresh, healthy sandwich, soup or salad. But if you want to visit the restaurant on the weekend, be sure to make a reservation, or you might be out of luck; Hayloft’s commitment to a fine-dining experience means the restaurant is often filled to capacity.

JOIN THE ASSEMBLY LINE Busy Airdrie families have a new way of dealing with dinner. Social Supper, open since December 2016, saves customers loads of time by doing all the advance work necessary for a healthy family meal. Shopping, food prep and cleanup is all taken care of – clients just assemble their nutritious meals onsite, then take them home to cook and enjoy. Social Supper is located on Kingsview Boulevard and the menu – filled with fresh ingredients that are often locally sourced – changes frequently. Kaidy Morgan, the store’s owner, has created a clean, trendy atmosphere and is one of the friendliest, hardest-working entrepreneurs out there. She is even offering workshops, such as kombucha brewing, and caters to groups both large and small. If you want a healthy, convenient alternative to fast food, that you can still customize to suit your family’s tastes, check out Social Supper.

ECLECTIC EATS Open every day for breakfast, lunch & dinner. 9 am - 8 pm 101 - 30 Market Blvd SE

587-254-0539 Abes Restaurant

@abesfood

Even if you visit Sorso often to grab a cup of some of Airdrie’s best coffee, loose-leaf tea and mind-blowingly awesome in-house-made desserts and baked treats, you may not be aware of what else the restaurant has to offer. Not only does Sorso serve killer breakfast and lunch sandwiches made with locally sourced meat and free-range eggs; it also has an extensive dinner menu featuring numerous shareable plates.

Online menu for takeout and delivery: abesfood.ca

NOW OPEN IN AIRDRIE! Western Canada’s First Craft Beer Bottle Shop

8 Tap Growler Bar 403-650-2882 thumbprintcraftbeer.ca Find us on Railway Avenue across from Sobeys (Street Level, Creekside Village Condos)

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-LUNCH-DINNER-AFTERNOON TEA-

403.980.8123

Please call for a reservation

haylofton8th.com


Those appys go great with the on-tap beer, wines (selected by Sorso owner Dmitri Martini in conjunction with a sommelier) and unique cocktails – running the gamut from a classic paralyzer to the ginboucha, which combines premium gin with locally made kombucha. Pairing the tasty drinks and fine eats prepared by Red Seal chef Jacob Starker with the inviting, eclectic atmosphere at Sorso makes the restaurant a no-brainer for a casual night out with friends. “It’s breaking the stereotype of what a coffee house is,” says Martini. “The idea is that I want to eat and drink here. It’s kind of my clubhouse.”

ON-TAP SERVICE Airdrians now have access to a huge variety of craft beer, thanks to Thumbprint Craft Beer Market. Located on MacKenzie Way, the boutique beer store has about 400 varieties of beer, from IPAs to stouts, all sourced from small breweries, many of which are situated in the region. Kara and Dave Fulton, the owners, have created a unique store with a cool vibe, and are super friendly and knowledgeable about what they have to offer. In addition to the bottled beer, of which customers can purchase just singles to allow them to taste a variety before choosing a favourite, Thumbprint’s on-tap growler bar gives clients a chance to try beers they typically couldn’t sample without going to a brewery. “We wanted to bring the brewery to the customer,” says Kara, noting Thumbprint is focused on sourcing hard-to-find beers. The couple is also looking to work with local breweries, such as the Calgary-based Dandy Brewing Company (which has a local connection in Matt Gaetz, one of the partners in the microbrewery). The Fultons feel when it comes to beer, local is often best.

GROWING THE PALATE Casual fine dining at The Woods Restaurant & Patioh! at Woodside Golf Course is getting even better this season. Chef Li Luo and Jaimie Dachy, food and beverage director at the popular restaurant, have been inspired by the flavours of fresh herbs and artisan greens and are creating space at Woodside to grow their own. “I am a huge gardener … and I wanted to bring that freshness,” says Dachy. “And Chef is really excited about it.” Diners can enjoy the restaurant’s fresh food, including homemade sauces and desserts, on Airdrie’s best patio as early as April. “We are lucky to say our patio backs onto greenspace,” says Dachy, noting heaters and outdoor fireplaces help extend the patio season. A haven for corporate and business clients, local events and golfers, The Woods offers daily specials, while focusing on beautiful presentations and outstanding service, to keep returning customers satisfied. life

Inspired by busy families Created for busy families

Date Night Ingredients: Tapas Wine Beer

airdrielife readers take $20 off your first order! Use code:

AIRDRIELIFE

Wine Bar & Bistro

at checkout

Lunch & Dinner. Reservations Recommended: 403.980.WINE

www.socialsupper.ca

136 1st Ave NE Airdrie

firstandvine.ca

firstandvine

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE DINING OUT

At the intersection of great food and good times:

FIRST & VINE STORY BY SHELLEY BOETTCHER PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

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T

he idea behind First & Vine was simple: to create a warm, welcoming space in Airdrie for date nights. A romantic, timeless place where couples could enjoy a great meal – and wine – without driving to the big city. So, when a big old house came up for purchase in downtown Airdrie, Jeff Lawrence, his wife Lisa Mundell-Lawrence and their business partner Paul Dabgotra knew they had the makings of a great restaurant. “We wanted it to feel like you’re going to your friend’s house for dinner – someplace cozy and intimate and not too pretentious,” says Mundell-Lawrence. “And we wanted to fill a gap,” Lawrence adds. “We wanted people to realize they don’t have to drive to Calgary for date night and pay for parking and whatever.” First & Vine opened in The Village in October 2016, only three months after the trio took possession of the space.

But as the space began to come together, so did the kitchen. Chef Michael Frayne heard about the venture and called up, asking to take part. No stranger to some of Western Canada’s best restaurants, he’s worked at Rouge Restaurant, Notable and The Nash in Calgary as well as Mission Hill Estate Winery in the Okanagan Valley. But Frayne lives in Airdrie, and loved the idea of working close to home. “I wanted to spend more time with my family, and taking five-six hours of commuting (out of the week) is a good way to do that,” he says. And he saw the need for a place in Airdrie “where you could have some great glass pours and bottles, and awesome bites of food that you can’t otherwise find here.” Dishes vary but the focus is on farm-to-table plates for sharing: bison carpaccio with a single-malt scotch aioli; Salt Spring Island mussels with farmer’s sausage; duck confit with an apple dressing; made-from-scratch gnocchi with

“We wanted it to feel like you’re going to your friend’s house for dinner – someplace cozy and intimate and not too pretentious” One of Airdrie’s oldest buildings, the two-storey house was built in 1905 as a manse for the church next door. It was a private residence for many years, as well as a shop and then a Latin-American restaurant. At that stage, a commercial kitchen was installed, but beyond that much needed to be done to create the look Mundell-Lawrence had envisioned. To start, a massive 16-foot bar in the main dining room was removed to make more space for tables, a handpainted collection in myriad colours. A feature wall behind the bar was created using the original 1905 pale-yellow shiplap exterior siding, and a bar was made from wood barn planks from the early 1900s. A wine cellar was created out of the 100-year-old river rock foundation. And the patio was ripped out, expanded and replaced. “The bones were there, but we had to change it quite a bit,” Lawrence says. Mundell-Lawrence adds: “Everything was touched. Everything.”

whipped goat cheese; and butternut squash topped with a pumpkin seed vinaigrette. “There’s a heavy influence on local Canadian products – that’s probably the best way to describe the menu,” notes Frayne. “But with a twist.” Craft beer and wine fans will also find plenty of options, including three seasonal beers on tap and roughly 20 wines, including a prosecco on tap. Open for lunch and dinner, the restaurant has room for 47 diners inside, and, when the weather is good, seating for an additional 51 outside on the two-tiered patio. Currently the restaurant is not licensed for minors, but the group is already anticipating requests for weddings and parties because of the flexibility of the space. “Because it’s a house, it offers the ability to have private rooms,” notes Lawrence. “We can put 16 in one room, 10 in another.” And of course, there’s plenty of room for couples looking for a romantic corner for date night. life SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE COLUMN

Pour a new glass vinelife

WITH KATHRYN ZONDAG

A

wise person once said that variety is the spice of life. I could not agree more! It is one of the reasons why this past year has been extremely exciting for the wining and dining scene here in Airdrie. It is true that the right glass or bottle, served with the right dish, can be an incredible experience. Menus in Airdrie have been taken to new heights, and I am excited to see the new wine lists are beginning to soar with them. Open the wine list at restaurants like Hayloft in Airdrie or First & Vine and you will find the likes of wines of which you may have never heard. Negroamaro or Verdejo, anyone? These pages contain wines that have been carefully picked for their high quality and beautiful flavours. But Kathryn, what is Negroamaro? Will I like Verdejo? Rest assured you will find something special.  Are you a fan of Sauvignon Blanc? Then you will love the fresh acidity and crisp citrus that wines like Verdejo or Chablis offer, but with more depth and complexity in flavour. Pair either with light seafood and you have a beautiful match. Is Malbec your go-to red? I recommend giving a glass of Negroamaro a try. The name of this Italian beauty literally translates to “dark and bitter.” It offers the same ripe dark blackberry, bitter cocoa and earth character of Malbec, but with a little more mouth-coating muscle. Pair it with a rich red meat dish like braised lamb shanks and you have a winner to write home about. Are you the type of person who cherishes ‘clean sheet day,’ stopping a moment under the covers to pause and take a deep breath? Then an aromatic experience with lightly perfumed Viognier, peachy Albarino, or the rose petals of Gewurztraminer will leave you wanting to pause, breathe deeply and savour. After all, isn’t that the reason we take time to go out for a meal with those we care about? To stop, savour and enjoy.  So next time you pop into one of Airdrie’s new restaurants, take your time with the wine list, don’t be shy, and ask about the unfamiliar and special selections. Treat yourself to something new. Not only will you have expanded your horizons, but you will likely find a new favourite. As someone who loves wine just as much as their friendly staff do, I can assure you that nothing is better than helping someone discover a new treasure! Cheers! life

- Kathryn Zondag is a certified sommelier, and holds the advanced certificate in wine and spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) in London, England

“It is true that the right glass or bottle, served with the right dish, can be an incredible experience”

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Anne of Green Gables

We’ve got your style covered.

An adaptation by Peter DeLaurier

Directed by Robin McKittrick Produced by special arrangement with Playscripts Inc playscripts.com

May 26 6:30 pm May 27 2:30 pm Bert Church Theatre

1010 East Lake Blvd, Airdrie

All tickets $12

(plus GST and $2 Ticketpro Fee)

Available online at:

nosecreekplayers.com

101-120 2nd Ave NE 403.912.0999 AirdrieEyecare.com SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE RECIPE

Let’s get cooking! Full of Beans

Come and learn some simple bean-based recipes & take home what you make

Family Friendly Freezer Meals

Let’s roll up our sleeves together to stock up on popular family dishes! Participants will prepare a selection of dishes to take away

Date Night

Spend some quality time together trying something new in the kitchen! A variety of themes will be offered Classes are updated and scheduled on an ongoing basis, check out our website!

airdriefoodbank.com/kitchen

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MEGHAN’S ADVICE FOR EATING WELL ON A BUDGET The first step to getting the most out of your food budget is ensuring that the food you purchase actually ends up being eaten and not thrown away. No matter your food philosophy, here are some basic tips to help you make the most of your food dollar. When possible, take advantage of sales to stock up on staples or purchase in larger quantities with a friend. Take the extra moment to look at the per-100-g pricing; it’s on most items at many grocery stores. While being conscious of value, don’t be tempted to purchase a huge quantity of something you won’t use just because it’s a great deal. Plan ahead and try to shop less often; it will minimize the number of extra items that come home with you. Be open to incorporating seasonal produce into your meal planning. Fruits and veggies that are in season are often superior in taste and value.


In the Kitchen

SOUP’S ON!

M

eghan West from the Airdrie Rotary Community Kitchen is back with a delicious recipe for Coconut Red Lentil Curry. “Over the years I’ve come back to this recipe over and over again. Part of what makes it so reliable is that it takes advantage of dry and canned goods so you aren’t bound by seasonal availability of certain ingredients,” West says. The recipe makes quite a big batch that can be used to either feed a crowd or be tucked away in the freezer for a rainy day.

COCONUT RED LENTIL CURRY Serves 8-10 2.5 cups split red lentils 2 19-oz cans of chickpeas 2 onions 30 oz crushed tomatoes (1 large can) 1 can coconut milk Spice Mix 3 cloves garlic 3 tbsp red curry paste 2 tbsp curry powder 2 tsp turmeric 2 tsp cumin 2 tsp salt 2 tsp sugar 1 tsp ginger Preheat oven to 325 F.

Chop garlic; set aside in a small bowl with all other spices for the spice mix. Rinse chickpeas and set aside. Rinse lentils and place in medium pot, add enough water to come up just above the lentils. Bring to a boil then turn down to a simmer until lentils are very soft (approximately 20 minutes). Once lentils are done, set aside. Dice the onions and sauté on low heat in a large pan for 20 minutes. Once the onions are very soft and translucent add spice mix. Stir spices and onion together for 3 minutes. Add chickpeas and crushed tomatoes to the large pot. Stir to combine. Spoon lentils out of medium pot into large pot and mix well. Finally, add coconut milk. Let simmer on low 5-10 minutes. Serve with naan bread or over quinoa or rice. life

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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Golf League & Lesson Camp Registration Senior’s Morning Men’s Commercial League Ladies Morning 9 Ladies Evening 9 Ladies Morning 18 Men’s Night Get Golf Ready Adult Camps Junior Lesson Camps *Registration begins in April

www.woodsidegc.com

#insanelyoutrageous

A WORLD PREMIERE PRODUCTION WITH AMERICAN CONSERVATORY THEATER, SAN FRANCISCO

A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS Based on the book by Khaled Hosseini Adapted by Ursula Rani Sarma Original music written and performed by David Coulter Directed by Carey Perloff

March 7 to April 1 “Inspirational, outstanding...a story of hope and of life!” the guardian

Tickets start at $35

403-294-7447 theatrecalgary.com @theatrecalgary #tc1000Suns Max Bell Theatre at Arts Commons

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SLICE OF LIFE CELEBRATION

2017 AMNAs put the spotlight on talent and passion STORY BY SHERRY SHAW-FROGGATT AND JOLENE RUDISUELA PHOTOS BY AMANDA BENNER

Cowtown Opera’s Leon Leontaridis and Courtney Murias rocked Bohemian Rhapsody

Art’s BIG Night T

he third annual TD Airdrie Mayor’s Night of the Arts, held Jan. 28, was a landmark night for the arts in Airdrie with more than 230 people crowding into Bert Church Theatre to celebrate the arts and culture community. The show featured live performances in folk, pop-opera, lyrical ballet and country. A first for the awards, the show was live-streamed and then edited for broadcast on Shaw TV Channel 10. Mayor Peter Brown said it best: “The arts are alive and well in Airdrie.” The excited crowd noshed on hors d’oeuvres and prosecco before the show, and gourmet desserts afterward. Circulating the upbeat lobby were models of the internationally renowned MakeFashion designs that fused art and technology, and guests enjoyed paparazzi photos in front of a living art installation. Highlights of the evening’s live show included a pas de deux by former Alberta Ballet dancers Yukichi Hattori and Galien Johnston Hattori and

A live painting by 2016 Professional Artist recipient Michelle Wiebe, which started on stage to the music of violinist and 2016 Youth Artist recipient Talia Beckie, was completed during the evening and auctioned off, raising $2,000 toward the 2018 event planning

performances by Art Bergmann, Mark Lorenz and the Cowtown Opera. The George Mac Jazz Band, under the direction of Jordan Harris, performed house band duties, adding plenty of energy to the awards portion of the evening. Awards were presented in six categories. Artists were recognized for their work in visual, film and textile mediums. They each received a custom-made sculpture by Airdrie artist Kirk Dunkley. All of the recipients were visibly moved by the attention. Filmmaker Mitchell George, winner of the Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD} Emerging Artist Award, said: “Winning this award feels amazing. It’s very scary to stand up there, but a lot of hard work came into this and I’m taking this award for my crew and the people responsible for making the projects we have.” Lynn Dalcin, a music teacher for 25 years, said on receiving the first JoRo Manufacturing Arts Educator Award: “I honestly don’t feel like I

Mark Lorenz shared his moving song When the Smoke Clears, dedicated to Fort Mac

Galien Johnston Hattori and Yukichi Hattori perform a breathtaking pas de deux

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SLICE OF LIFE CELEBRATION

The lively reception before and after the show included complimentary prosecco, Hayloft bites and the always anticipated Avenue Cakery Dessert Bar “We’ve been lead sponsor all three years … and what amazes me about the AMNAs is the talent it brings out and showcases,” said TD’s Derrick Cresswell-Clough (pictured below). “Each year, we’ve seen performers we haven’t seen before, brand new nominees, new faces – the kind of talent this community possesses is just awesome. We’re just proud to be along for the ride. Thanks to Creative Airdrie for making us a part of it.”

Art Bergmann brought 40 years of music to the stage (L to R) Glenn Smaha of Davis Chevrolet with Sherry Shaw-Froggatt, Davis Chevrolet Patron of the Arts recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown

(Above, L to R) Dr. Daniel Doz of ACAD with Mitchell George, ACAD Emerging Artist recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown (Below, L to R) Pat Cashion of Vitreous Glass with Deanna Hunter, Vitreous Champion of the Arts recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown

(L to R) Andy Morrell of McKee Homes with Erin Brekke Conn, McKee Professional Artist recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown

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(L to R) Claudio Palumbo of Qualico Communities with Katherine Funk, Qualico Youth Artist recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown

airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

(L to R) Johnny Mattar of JoRo Manufacturing with Lynn Dalcin, JoRo Arts Educator recipient, and Mayor Peter Brown


could explain how much it means to me. Children need arts in their life and that’s why I’m absolutely passionate about it.” McKee Professional Artist recipient Erin Brekke Conn (featured on the spring 2016 airdrielife cover) was overwhelmed by the honour. “I am completely surprised and so humbled and grateful,” she said. “Making good work that I’m really proud of is so important to me. It’s not about quantity, it’s about quality, so I’m so thankful for this award.” “I actually was shaking a lot. I didn’t think I was going to win because there were so many other good folks in that nomination category,” said Deanna Hunter, recipient of the Vitreous Glass Champion of the Arts Award. Hunter is chair of the Creative Airdrie Society. “It is an honour because there are so many people that put in lots of time and energy and I’m just one of the many.” Qualico Youth Artist Award recipient Katherine Funk credited her mom Veronica Funk (the 2015 Professional Artist recipient). “My mom is an artist so she always had all the material in our house, so I was able to just experiment and see what I was interested in,” said Katherine. “I don’t know if I would even be an artist if I hadn’t grown up in this house.” airdrielife was also a recipient. Publisher Sherry Shaw-Froggatt accepted the Davis Chevrolet Patron of the Arts Award. “Art and culture are what give a community its soul,” she said. “And to be honest, I love filling the pages of the magazine with colourful stories about artists, musicians, writers, filmmakers – it just shows how diverse and talented this city is.” The nominees were adjudicated by out-ofmarket jurors from across the arts spectrum. ACAD president Daniel Doz said the college is always looking to help nurture new artists, and is pleased to be a part of the event. He said art has an amazing ability of bringing people together, and letting artists know they are appreciated is vital to their success. “We live in a world where we don’t say thank you enough,” said Doz. “I think it’s about recognizing that your work as an artist really has some merit and forces us to think – then there’s the bonus that somebody gets an award.” He added that at the end of the day, it is art that defines us. “I feel we measure true progress of society more through the arts than anything else. It becomes markers of our time. It becomes the reflection of who we are.” life

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE EVENTS

SPRING CALENDAR

MARCH 1 WRITERS WORKSHOP Airdrie Public Library For adults looking to share their writing and ideas and to get constructive feedback from other writers in the community. Everyone welcome. No registration required. 7-8 p.m.

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MARCH 5 PETER PAN Bert Church Theatre Presented by the DuffleBag Theatre, this unpredictable performance is a hilarious experience for all ages where the dream of living a fairy tale comes true! Admission is $16. 2:30 p.m.

MARCH 18 SHAMROCK SHIMMY FUNDRAISER Town and Country Centre All proceeds support Airdrie Food Bank. Cash bar, silent and live auctions, 50/50, Irish entertainment. Tickets available at Airdrie Food Bank or call 403-948-0063. Cocktails 6 p.m., dinner 7 p.m., dance to follow.

MARCH 9 THE LEAHYS Bert Church Theatre This Canadian powerhouse of six siblings – instrumentalists, singers and dancers – brings a rare level of originality and musicianship to the stage. This originality includes music the group writes, arranges and produces. Known for their unique blend of musical styles and genres, their repertoire is more distinct than ever. Admission is $35. 7:30 p.m.

MARCH 15-25 ANNUAL AIRDRIE ROTARY FESTIVAL OF PERFORMING ARTS Bert Church Theatre, assorted churches The festival promotes the appreciation of music and speech arts and encourages amateur performers and students to participate and perform in a positive, non-competitive environment. The disciplines of piano, voice, musical theatre, choir, strings, speech and band are offered. Free and open to the public. Daily schedule available online.

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MARCH 23 ROCKYVIEW ROLLERS TRY-IT NIGHT Genesis Place Open to all new and/or experience roller skaters looking to learn more about roller derby with the Rocky View Roller Derby Association and WFTDA. Gear is provided; all you need to bring is a positive, can-do attitude and some gym attire. Learn about gear, the local derby scene, WFTDA, the fresh meat programme and this supportive group of skaters! Free to attend. 7:30-10 p.m. MARCH 24-25 ROBIN HOOD Victory Church Torchlight Theatre’s SPARK program proudly presents this performance by Dan Neidermyer. Join Friar Tuck, the wandering minstrel and man of the cloth, as he introduces you to the Prince of Thieves, Robin Hood! Hear the legendary tale and watch it come to life as you meet Little John, Robin’s right-hand-man, Maid Marian, Robin’s sweetheart and love, and Marian’s dedicated handmaiden, Cassandra. Let’s not forget the evil Sheriff of Nottingham and the despotic monarch King John. It’s an adventure you will not want to miss! Friday admission $10, show 7 p.m.; Saturday admission $8, show 2 p.m.

JUST FOR HER

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or all things feminine, look no further than the second annual Just for Her Women’s Show and Market. Coming to Airdrie’s Town and Country Centre April 1-2, the show will feature about 50 vendors showcasing everything from jewelry and fashion to food and women’s services. The event is being put on by Shaulyn van Baaren of SvB events and will run on April 1 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and April 2 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The show will feature a silent auction in support of P.O.W.E.R., a local group looking to bring a women’s shelter to the city. Visitors can also take part in do-it-yourself workshops, listen to great local speakers and try out a bevy of local services, with classes and drop-in sessions taking place all weekend. Youngsters are welcome and moms can even shop for products and services geared toward their little ones. “It’s all things estrogen,” says an excited van Baaren.

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SLICE OF LIFE EVENTS MARCH 25 AIRDRIE ROTARY FESTIVAL OF PERFORMING ARTS BENEFIT CONCERT AND SILENT AUCTION Bert Church Theatre Tickets available at the door or in advance at (403) 585-6532. Admission is $10 adult, $5 senior/student.

APRIL 16 FAMILY EASTER EGG HUNT East Lake Park/Bert Church Theatre A free family event including a magic show at Bert Church Theatre, egg hunt, bouncy structures, refreshments, prizes, and new this year, Butterfield Acres petting corral. Please bring a donation for the food bank. 9:30 a.m.-12 p.m.

APRIL 1 PRAIRIE MOUNTAIN FIDDLERS Bert Church Theatre Back by popular demand! This will be a foot-stomping, toe-tapping afternoon full of good old-time fiddle music. This group plays for the people and for the love of the music. Just good old-fashioned fun! Admission is $16. 2:30 p.m.

APRIL 19 WRITERS WORKSHOP Airdrie Public Library For adults looking to share their writing and ideas and to get constructive feedback from other writers in the community. Everyone welcome. No registration required. 7-8 p.m.

APRIL 1-2 “JUST FOR HER” AIRDRIE WOMEN’S SHOW Town and Country Centre Returning for a second year, this premier show and market will include fashion, cosmetics, jewelry, personal services and much more. Silent auction with all proceeds going to Airdrie P.O.W.E.R., fundraising to bring a women’s shelter to Airdrie. Be sure to mark this dynamic event on your calendar and invite all your girlfriends. Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. APRIL 8 PETER N’ CHRIS: THE MYSTERY OF THE HUNGRY HEART HOTEL Bert Church Theatre Peter n’ Chris (Peter Carlone and Chris Wilson) are a three-time Canadian Comedy Award winning sketch troupe from Vancouver, B.C. The story focuses on Peter and Chris, two hapless everymen who become stranded on the side of a spooky highway. Their only option is to take shelter at the mysterious Hungry Heart Motel. Admission is $16. 7:30 p.m. APRIL 11-13 7th ANNUAL RIDE OF THE MUSTANG George McDougall High School All money raised through this fundraising event, organized by George McDougall High School students and staff, is donated to the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation to help kids who are fighting cancer. Prior to the event, teams of students collect pledges to take part in the 48-hour stationary bike relay, which in the past six years, has raised more than $649,000.

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APRIL 22 GUITAR & SONGWRITING CLINIC Daybreak Community Church Hosted by Slam in Airdrie, featuring two of Canada’s premiere guitarists: Derry Grehan from Honeymoon Suite and Sean Kelly, guitarist for Nelly Furtado and Lee Aaron. Other special guests will discuss the music industry, music publishing and distribution. Lots of value for local musicians. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tickets $100 for SLAM members; $125 for non-members. Seats can be reserved at slaminairdrie.com APRIL 29 GETTING’ DOWN WITH DIRTY DEBORAH HARRY Pete Knight Arena (Crossfield) Dirty Deborah Harry joins the Rocky View Rollers all the way from Long Beach, California to instruct any scrimmage-ready and insured roller derby player on skating skills. This Roller-Con instructor has a gift when it comes to teaching all levels, and RVRDA looks forward to opening this gender-inclusive event to everyone! $40 for this full day event, with munchies provided. APRIL 29-30 AIRDRIE HOME & LIFESTYLE SHOW Genesis Place An excellent way to connect with your community and explore home and lifestyle solutions. With more than 200 exhibitors, the show offers something for everyone. Be sure to visit the ARTS Market (free admission), hosted by Airdrie Regional Arts Society, located in the main gymnasium at Genesis Place. Show admission is $5; children 12 and under enter free with adult. Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

MAY 6 ROCKYVIEW ROLLERS ROOKIE RUMBLE Pete Knight Arena (Crossfield) This WWE vs UFC themed rookie invitational is open to all benchmarked and insured skaters who have seven or less (scrimmages and invitationals exempt) bouts under their belts. Open to the public for viewing, this genderinclusive bout is sure to be an entertaining one to watch! $10 for skaters, and free to the public. MAY 12 7th ANNUAL AMAZING AIRDRIE WOMEN AWARDS LUNCHEON The Woods Restaurant The biggest celebration of women in Airdrie! Presented by airdrielife and Pharmasave on Centre, with special guest comedian Cory Mack, star of CBC TV and radio. Also features the unveiling of the 52 Weeks: Heroes Series by artist Veronica Funk. Prosecco reception and gourmet lunch. Tickets $50, available through woodsidegc.com/store. 11: 30 a.m. MAY 26-27 ANNE OF GREEN GABLES Bert Church Theatre Presented by Nose Creek Players. An adaptation by Peter DeLaurier. Directed by Robin McKittrick. A touching tale about the hopes and dreams of a lonely young girl with a big imagination. This classic Canadian story is filled with heartwarming drama and hilarious mishaps as the precocious Anne Shirley learns to find her way in the world and eventually into the hearts of the people of Avonlea. Friday at 6:30 p.m.; Saturday at 2:30 p.m. Tickets $12 plus $2 Ticketpro fee. MAY 29 1ST ANNUAL P.O.W.E.R. GOLF TOURNAMENT Woodside Golf Course Support the efforts of Airdrie P.O.W.E.R., a non-profit organization working toward the creation of an emergency women’s shelter in Airdrie, and enjoy prizes, dinner and social activities.


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SLICE OF LIFE WELLNESS

Last 20 Pounds Fitness Challenge THE RESULTS ARE IN

STORY BY MICHELLE CARRE | PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

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Hair that turns heads... Check out the amazing results!

C

hristine and Tracy from Tri Fit Training and I are all very proud of this year’s contestants! Lana Lou Cochrane, Jay Restar and Jessica Janes were dedicated to the challenge and eager to learn. None of them approached this with a 12-week time frame in mind. All three wanted to gain knowledge to live healthier lives during and well after the challenge. Throughout the challenge the contestants visited U Weight Loss once a week for one-on-one coaching. Looking back on her experience, Jessica says: “They gave me the most delicious recipes, and nutrition guidance that made losing weight simple. I looked forward to my weekly meetings to chat and get the encouragement I needed to keep going.” The trio also went to Tri Fit Training three to five times each week. “It’s a unique and challenging gym that keeps the workouts fresh,” says Jessica. “You’ll never do the same thing twice.” Each of the contestants expressed gratitude for their life-changing experience. “I know I’ll never go back to the person I was these last two years, and I’m so happy with the person I’ve become,” adds Jessica. “What an amazing experience; we have all won in this challenge,” says Lana Lou.  “U Weight Loss and Tri Fit Training have given me the life skills to achieve my goals and stick to them. Thank you.” Adds Jay: “This is not the end; it’s the start of the new me.” We are proud to share with you that Jessica was the winner of this challenge with a total loss of 25.8 pounds and 33 inches! Jessica receives a six-month membership to Tri Fit Training, three months with U Weight Loss as well as an airdrielife makeover! life

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SLICE OF LIFE WELLNESS

“What an amazing experience; we have all won in this challenge”

JESSICA

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BEFORE

Initial Weight: 201 End Weight: 181.2 Total Loss: 19.8 Total % of Body Weight Loss: 9.9% Total Inches Lost: 31.75” Neck: 1” Shoulders: 5” Bust: 3.25“ Waist: 4.5” Midsection: 4” Hips: 4” Left Leg: 2.75” Right Leg: 2.25” Left Arm: 2.5” Right Arm: 2.5”

LANA LOU

BEFORE

JAY

JESSICA

Initial Weight: 192.4 End Weight: 166.6 Total Loss: 25.8 Total % of Body Weight Loss: 13.5% Total Inches Lost: 33” Neck: 1” Shoulders: 4” Bust: 3.25“ Waist: 6.5” Midsection: 5.5” Hips: 5.25” Left Leg: 3” Right Leg: 2.25” Left Arm: 1” Right Arm: 1”

LANA

JAY

BEFORE

Initial Weight: 185.2 End Weight: 169.4 Total Loss: 15.8 Total % of Body Weight Loss: 8.6% Total Inches Lost: 27.5” Neck: 0.5” Shoulders: 3.5” Bust: 3.5“ Waist: 7.5” Midsection: 6” Hips: 3” Left Leg: 1” Right Leg: 0.5” Left Arm: 1” Right Arm: 1”


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Festival Showcase

Saturday, March 25 7 pm Bert Church LIVE Theatre Tickets available at Bert Church Live Theatre or by calling 403.585.6532 www.airdrierotaryfestival.org SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE MAKEOVER

Fit for a New Look STORY BY SELINE BADEL-WONG | PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

I

met Jessica Janes, winner of the airdrielife Last 20 Pounds Fitness Challenge, in person after she had already lost weight and made her amazing transformation. She was so comfortable in her shape, so natural; it was as though she’d always been that size, never having to worry about weight. However, after following her in the magazine and speaking with her oneon-one, I realized what she has overcome, how hard she has worked and how far she has come. From the moment we met, I could tell Jessica was a get-up-and-go kind of gal. She has an effervescent personality with a smile to match. She is open-minded and willing to try new things. She told me about coming from a very active family and having a good past record of exercise and health.

“Many of the [clothing] pieces are simple but interesting and still interchangeable or easy to enhance with shoes, accessories and jackets”

BEFORE

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But even people with the most positive outlooks sometimes find themselves in a negative spiral. It happens. Life happens and it’s not always what we expect so it becomes hard to find our way back to that positive person. Jessica told me: “I just became this person that would put my son to bed ... sit on the couch and eat junk food....” The fact that she has made this transformation is an inspiration to so many people. She battled through both depression and weight gain to come out the other side in a much better frame of mind and body. And with this new body came a strong desire for a new wardrobe after hating clothes-shopping and especially the act of trying on clothes. “Buying clothing at places like Costco, without trying them on, became the norm.” When Jessica lost a whopping 26 pounds there was not much left in her closet that did fit so starting over became more of a need, not just a want. I decided to explore a capsule wardrobe for Jessica. Capsule in adjective form means “brief” or “short.” Shopping at The Store Upstairs, I


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SLICE OF LIFE MAKEOVER

wanted to find a few great pieces that would be stunners all by themselves but also work in combination with one another. This would allow Jessica to have minimal pieces, with maximum outfit potential. As a result, many of the pieces are simple but interesting and still interchangeable or easy to enhance with shoes, accessories and jackets. The lace dress is perfect for a more formal event this spring or summer. However, throw a little denim jacket or this green army-style jacket (cadet chic is in style) over top and you can stroll in the park or grab ice cream just as easily. The capsule-wardrobe concept extends to the shoes, giving Jessica neutral footwear options for dress or play. Using gold and gray tones, with heels and flats as options, the shoes match all the outfits. Each pair can transfer from one outfit to the next, changing the overall look each time. The bottoms I selected – a gray denim, an army-coloured moto-style pant and a deep indigo denim – are all good classics but provide enough variety to change looks. Each of the blouses I picked has a slightly different feel (e.g. from boho chic and soft off-white to pastel florals) yet can be interchanged with any of the pants. Jessica’s new wardrobe takes her from playing LEGO on the floor with her son to school pick-up and out for date night. With any good makeover, hair, teeth and cosmetics are also good to review and renew to polish a new look. A teeth-whitening treatment from Nose Creek Dental put the gleam back into Jessica’s already gorgeous smile. Mane Image Hair Design used a French balayage (hair painting) technique to provide Jessica with some beautiful, bright highlights that don’t require a lot of upkeep, and a health trim to give her lots of natural movement. Her makeup, also by Mane Image, brought out her big, beautiful eyes with some great brush-stroke techniques, enhancing Jessica’s natural colouring. A bright-pink lipstick made her smile pop and, though our makeover winner said she doesn’t wear that colour, put her right on trend for spring and summer, with bright pink being one of this season’s hottest shades. A complete re-do is something many wish for or want, but it doesn’t come without hard work. Getting there is definitely a challenge but the rewards of loving yourself and your life again, like Jessica, may be just the inspiration needed. life Does your man need a makeover? Enter online

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- Seline Badel-Wong is a personal stylist at thefashion-fix.com


2017

Weddinglife Wedding Dresses

TRENDS BY JOLENE RUDISUELA This year’s popular wedding gown styles range from big and bold to sleek and elegant. Nadine Dagher with Embrace Bridal says one of the main trends right now is horsehair trim around the bottom of the skirt to create large ruffles and obvious layers. Big, oversized bows are also making a comeback on either the front or the back of the gown. Dresses with plunging necklines are also very popular with long Vs extending below the bust. For a more fitted style, trumpet dresses are back with a snug fit on top that gradually flares out around mid-thigh. As for the fabric, Dagher says lace is still very popular for full gowns, veils or even detailing on the skirt or bodice. For a less traditional look, opt for a dress with some glitter and sparkle. Dagher recommends shopping for your wedding gown at least six months before your big day to make sure everything is perfect and ready in time.

Airdrians Courtney and JD Cadegan eloped on Dec. 8, 2016, one of the coldest days of the year in Banff. They braved the -41 C wind chill to capture their day on the frozen Vermilion Lakes. Their fingers were cold, but their hearts were warm. Photo by Selenia Teresa Photography. Hair and makeup by Sarika Mehta Makeup.

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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2017 Wedding Trends Jewelry

Amy Leonard, fashion supervisor at The Store Upstairs, says the boutique is seeing a lot of new trends in jewelry this year. While it is traditional to have a statement necklace, she says brides are moving more toward statement earrings. Shoulder-duster earrings and hoops are perfect statement pieces, working well with a variety of hairstyles and dress necklines. Forehead bands are also popular, with many different styles to match different dresses and tastes. Light copper chains with pearls or flowers create more of a boho look while simple studs radiate elegance. Leonard adds that chokers are also making a comeback and work really well with V-neck, sweetheart or strapless necklines to create a timeless look.

up artists know how to choose the colours that match your unique character and features. Proper technique and high-quality products will keep your makeup perfect all day and keep you camera ready.” For hairstyles, Mehta adds that braiding is back for brides. Long, loose braids can be elegant by themselves or can be used in an up-do. According to Calgary Bride, natural and untamed hair is also trending for those wanting a more effortless look. Mehta recommends following a strict beauty ritual in the months leading up to your wedding day to make sure your skin is bright, healthy and beautiful. Be sure to cleanse your skin every day and remember to moisturize, moisturize and moisturize. Drinking lots of water and eating a balanced diet with lots of vitamin C will also do wonders for your skin and overall health.

Hair and Makeup

Local makeup artist Sarika Mehta says brides will be opting for less makeup this year. One of the top looks she’s seeing is a subtle smoky eye, rosy cheeks and lots of shimmer. Pink lips with geometric eyeliner and bronzer is also popular. Mehta says hiring a professional to do makeup on your wedding day will reduce stress and help you look your best. “From foundation to your lips to the perfect eyeliner, make-

Cakes

Back again for another year, “naked cakes” are going to be popular in 2017, according to Calgary Bride. These cakes have more of a rustic look with a very light layer of icing to partially cover the cake underneath. To add colour, top them off with fresh fruit or flowers.

Very structured cakes with geometric designs are also popular. These cakes are often decorated with bright colour combinations and patterns.

Themes

While 2016 weddings featured many pastel tones such as blush and taupe, 2017 is introducing bright, bold and playful colours into the mix. According to The Knot, brides are moving further away from traditional and opting for more vibrant colours that pop. Black is also back, according to Calgary Bride, and is no longer just an accent colour. Bring black to the forefront of your wedding by pairing it with different textures and finishes for a more sophisticated feel. However, if bright or bold colours aren’t your style, Leonard suggests pairing neutral tones with metallics such as copper, rose gold or silver for that wow factor. As for wedding themes, Leonard says many brides are going for the vintage glamour feel, contrasting stark spaces with delicate or ornate decorations. These “warehouse venues” can be decked out with elaborate centrepieces, candles and strands of lights. According to The Knot, many brides are also “going green” by trying to bring the outside in. Place oversized potted trees or large bouquets in your venue to add natural elements to the setting. life

airdrielife Wedding Event 2017 Vendors The 2017 airdrielife Wedding Event, held Feb. 12, featured more than 50 area vendors in business to make your wedding day dreams come true. Keep this handy reference list when planning your big day. Epicure Selections 587-360-4446 twdish82@hotmail.com www.triciafriedenberg.ca

Paradise Weddings 403-607-9937 elizabeth@paradiseweddings.ca www.paradiseweddings.ca

Wild Bills DJ Service 403-276-9388 musicman9@shaw.ca www.wildbillthedj.com

Scentsy 403-991-9185 kristenrothery@yahoo.ca www.kristenrothery.scentsy.ca

Jazzed Up Events Ltd. 403-980-1414 andy@jazzedupevents.com www.jazzedupevents.com

Strut Fitness & Dance 403-700-0471 11 126 16th Ave NE, Calgary www.strutfitness.ca

Codio Photography 403-980-5159 info@codiophotography.com www.codiophotography.com

The Store Upstairs 403-948-0010 101-209 Centre Ave, Airdrie timps338@telus.net

Momentum Hospitality 403-980-4477 ext 5050 52 East Lake Ave NE, Airdrie airdriesuites.hamptoninn.com

Embrace Bridal Fashions 403-948-2852 403 MacKenzie Way, Airdrie www.embracefashions.com

Adoniaa 403-922-6330 Info@adoniaa.com www.adoniaa.com

Mary Kay Cosmetics 403-948-7290 mkcurrie@telus.net www.marykay.ca/mcurrie

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2017 Wedding Trends Origami Owl 780-813-0488 ayagminas@hotmail.com www.amanday.origamiowl.ca

All Out Entertainment 403-993-4990 info@alloutdj.com www.alloutdj.com Stella & Dot 587-223-4751 ca_newman@yahoo.ca stelladot.com/christinanewman Arbonne International 403-512-7237 hm.allison@icloud.com heathermallison.arbonne.com

Apple Creek Golf Course 403-671-3062 11064 Twp Road 275 - Site11, Box 11 R.R.#1, RockyView richd@applecreekgolfcourse.com applecreekgolfcourse.com Tri Fit Training 403-589-5841 101, 2914 Kingsview Blvd trifittrain@gmail.com www.trifittraining.ca Younique With Andrea 587-899-5613 AndreaALindsay@gmail.com www.YouniqueWithAndrea.com Lavish 403-823-9957 Stephanietinani@gmail.com www.Eventsyourway.org

Color by Amber 403-993-9873 pamcba@outlook.com pamcba.mycolorbyamber.com

Makeup by sarika m 587-896-0134 Makeupbysarikam@gmail.com www.makeupbysarika.ca

Steeped Tea 403-559-9190 steepedtea.angela@gmail.com mysteepedtea.com/CHANT

Kitty Welbergen 403-608-8284 mizmew@gmail.com www.skysongangelcenter.ca

Norwex 403-809-7316 phoenixlyon@me.com www.phoenixlyon.norwex.biz

Aesthetic Care by VernaJean 403-912-1655 vernajeanskincare@gmail.com www.vernajean.com

Smallprint 403-763-9682 aliser.ramos@smallprint.com smallprint.com/aliserramos Arty 403-903-5152 artyom.sych@yahoo.com www.artysych.com

Kristy Reimer Photography 403-852-4392 info@kristyreimerphotography.com www.kristyreimerphotography.com Miss Tilly’s Catering 403-477-6525 info@misstillys.ca www.misstillys.ca

Find wedding accessories at The Store Upstairs!

Jewelry, tiaras, hair pieces Mother of the Bride dresses, shoes and one-of-a-kind gifts. Follow us on social media for the latest fashion arrivals every week! Facebook.com/TheStoreUpstairs/ 101 209 Centre Ave SW 403.948.0010 storeupstairs.ca

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2017 Wedding Trends Pink Orchid Décor 403-945-2409 anna@pinkorchiddecor.com www.pinkorchiddecor.com

Creative Edge Flowers 403-226-6983 #404 500 Country Hills Blvd NE www.creativeedgeflowers.com

Rodan + Fields Skin Care 403-710-3447 hlemna@shaw.ca www.hlemna.myrandf.com/ca

Uva and Oliva Balsamic Vinegar and Olive Oil 403-354-1250 uvaandoliva@outlook.com www.facebook.com/uvaandoliva

Edge Entertainment Freeze Frame Photo Booth 403-274-6000 info@edgeentertainment.ca www.edgeentertainment.ca

Eventful Planning 403-560-5131 erin@eventfulplanningcalgary.ca www.eventfulplanning.ca

Marlin Travel 403-912-3720 #100, 2700 Main Street www.marlintravel.ca

JoyLove Photography 403-971-1404 mandi@joylovephotography.com www.joylovephotography.com

Colp Cosmetics 403-990-3660 colpcosmetics@outlook.com www.colpcosmetics.com

IN.Form by Nature’s Sunshine 403-826-5403 www.rkossowan.mynsp.com

Sandcastle Vacations 403-948-6928 5-117 Main Street N, Airdrie Jodie@scvacations.ca www.sandcastlevacations.ca Cake it! 403-396-5489 cakeitcm@yahoo.ca www.facebook.com/cakeitcm Aeron E. King, Goldsmith Ltd. 403-981-9190 Bay 3, 123 2 Ave W, Cochrane www.aeronekinggoldsmith.com Anna’s Spa & Wellness Centre 403-980-2662 107 1st Street NW, Airdrie www.anna-spa.ca Beautycounter 403-478-1541 Kristashewchuk@hotmail.com www.beautycounter.com/en-ca/kristashewchuk

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Nerium 403-949-2862 lorichase15@gmail.com www.lorichase.nerium.ca Cody Party Centre Airdrie 403-948-4251 1107 - 2800 Main St www.codypartyairdrie.com Yasmine Floral & Home Decor 587-966-2993 hello@yasminefloral.com www.yasminefloral.com Blossoms Massage & Spa 403-980-8810 blossomsmassage@gmail.com www.blossomsspa.ca Enlighten Laser Airdrie 403-809-2018 6108, 403 MacKenzie Way SW tanya@enlightenlaser.ca www.enlightenlaser.ca

Sarika M ehta Makeup Artistry makeupbysarika.ca

Your wedding venue should be as outrageous as you.


SLICE OF LIFE COLUMN

petlife

The cost of veterinary medicine

WITH DR. DAVE SEEFELDT

T

he cost of veterinary medicine has escalated over the last several decades. I think the largest factor driving this escalation is that our relationship with our pets continues to evolve. Our pets have moved from being kept outdoors to sleeping with us in our beds. With this shift comes an increase in the demand for quality and compassionate veterinary care. In years gone by, owners didn’t seek out diagnostics to treat their pet. If there wasn’t a quick, inexpensive way to help the pet, it often went without treatment or was possibly euthanized. Fast forward to present day when we see pets being cared for like they are family members. We want what’s best and along with this demand comes an increase in costs. The demand for veterinary care means more investments must be made by veterinary clinics to deliver these services. Investments in professional staff, technology, inventory, proper facilities, etc. increase a clinic’s expenses. Of these expenses, staffing is typically the largest. A typical veterinary clinic employs receptionists, veterinary assistants, animal health technologists (AHTs) and veterinarians. Each have certain levels of training required to provide quality veterinary care, and expect to be compensated fairly. In addition, most clinics spend money for continuing education for their staff to keep up to date on new and emerging medicines and treatments. Progressive practices also invest in a high level of technology. Computerized records, digital X-ray, laboratory equipment, anesthetic machines, surgical and dental equipment, ultrasonography, etc. are crucial to diagnose and treat pets on the spot. Technology also rapidly changes so there is a need to replace equipment to advance a clinic’s ability to do a better job. Having inventory on hand, such as medications and diets, is another expense, as are the costs associated with electricity, natural gas, rent, etc. As a result of these heavy overhead costs, the fees charged in the delivery of veterinary services can get quite expensive if you aren’t prepared. life

Dr. Dave Seefeldt is a veterinarian with Airdrie Animal Health Centre

You know me so well...

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SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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SLICE OF LIFE COLUMN

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parentlife

WITH CLAUDIA SASSE

How do we teach our children to create their own budget?

“Including children in the family’s financial planning will empower them to make better future monetary decisions”

W

e all want our children to be educated, literate, have great numeracy skills and be well behaved, don’t we? That is an aspiration of all parents and caregivers, and we will do our best to make that happen. But how do we teach our children to use and save money? What can we do to support them from an early age to understand how our monetary world works? Well, that is not a simple task, especially if we were never taught these skills and still don’t know how to wisely use our own hard-earned money. It is very important to develop good habits in our children’s lives and if we start early, these good habits will have more chances to last. A good way to start teaching our children about money is taking them with us when we go shopping. I know it is not easy! I remember taking my daughter along to the grocery store and having to explain to her why we are not buying chocolate, pop and potato chips, regardless of the tantrums. But, fellow parents, I can attest that this task is worth it. One thing that can make your life a lot easier is to ask your child to help you write the grocery list before you leave the house. This way they will know what you are planning to buy. You can even mention how much money you want to spend that day at the grocery store. As soon as you get to the store and begin placing things in your shopping cart, ask your child if they know how much that product costs. When you have a few things in the cart, you can also ask your child, depending on age, for an “estimation” of the total grocery bill. This is a great exercise that will help your child think about expenses and also to plan for a real budget. Including children in the family’s financial planning will empower them to make better future monetary decisions. Another strategy that helps children deal with money is to give them an allowance as a teaching tool; to allow them to develop some independence skills rather than just paying them for chores. It can be something really small, once a week or even once a month, as the lesson we want to teach is how to use or save that money. The actual amount is up to each family to decide, and it can be adjusted accordingly to the child’s age. The main point is that children should learn how to plan to save money in order to acquire something they really want to buy. It also helps them to understand why sometimes they cannot afford to buy something that they wish to have. Be your child’s best financial advisor. Teaching children how to budget with small amounts of money can save them a lot of ‘headaches’ in the future when they will be dealing with larger amounts. Allowing your children to be part of your financial lives from a young age will help them have better control of their own future financial situation. life Claudia Sasse is a mom, teacher and graduate student working on her master’s degree in elementary education, focused on curriculum and pedagogy. Born in Brazil, Sasse has lived in Airdrie with her husband and daughter since 2009.

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SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

65


NEW SHOWHOMES OPENING IN MAY 2017 NEW LOTS RELEASED

TOWNHOMES

DUPLEXES

LANED HOMES

FRONT GARAGE

SEMI-ESTATE

FROM THE

FROM THE

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FROM THE

FROM THE

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250’S

$

350’S

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380’S

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400’S

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500’S

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Simply take our reader survey and you are automatically entered to win! Draw date June 30, 2017

All taxes and gratuities included. Emerald Lake Lodge Alcohol Yoho not included. National Park

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When you leave the city, you take a deep breath and relax as you come into Airdrie. Everyday you come home. We absolutely love our neighbours. In Ravenswood, we always feel safe

WIN tix to Theatre Calgary’s Crazy for You and A Thousand Splendid Suns, Torchlight Theatre’s Steel Magnolias and BCT’s Peter N’ Chris The Mystery of the Hungry Heart Hotel

and a sense of community. Jeremy & Shauna Homeowners since 2015

IN Ravenswood's parkland, green corridors and

Build with Broadview Homes, 2015 Builder of the Year and 2016 Homebuyers’ Choice Award Winner in the thriving community of Ravenswood. Homes starting in the mid $400’s, come check out a Broadview home where innovation and quality come standard.

playgrounds have been strategically placed throughout the community, creating an idyllic setting that invites residents to stroll, cycle or just relax and enjoy the scenery. With quick access to

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Come visit us at our showhomes in Ravenswood. 1548 Ravensmoor Way

A I R D R I E

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413 Ravensmoor Common

Saturday - Sunday & Holidays: 12pm - 5pm

Friday: Closed

Qualico Communities are built with one thing in mind - you. Our thoughtfully master-planned spaces are built with an intuitive sense of community that nurtures individuals, families and friendships.

WIN tix to see the Prairie Mountain Fiddlers or The Leahy’s live on stage at Bert Church Theatre

P R I Z E S

From afternoon tea to craft beer, tapas to tenderloin, we’ve got tastes for everyone and we’ll be giving away gift cards for Airdrie’s top food experiences including Hayloft, First & Vine, The Woods, Abe’s, Thumbprint Craft Beer Market and Social Supper. Follow us on social media at TASTEairdrie to win weekly prizes!

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SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

65


OUR BUILDERS LOVE RAVENSWOOD, AND YOU'LL SEE IT IN THE HOMES

MORTGAGE SOLUTIONS

A I R D R I E

SHOWHOME

$

609,900*

includes house, lot & GST

SANTIAGO 6 - 2350 sq ft 1552 RAVENSMOOR WAY Features: • Hardwood & Tile Floors • 9’ Main Floor Ceilings

Purchases Refinances Debt Consolidation Rate Comparison

• Executive Kitchen with built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Quartz Countertops

Sherry Jenkins Mortgage Consultant

133 1st St. NW Airdrie WeMortgage.ca

#

17174

P 403.804.3694 F 1.866.899.6813 E sherry@wemortgage.ca

JUNE POSSESSION

$

OUR RESIDENTS LOVE RAVENSWOOD, AND YOU WILL TOO.

We moved from a small town, so it was so refreshing to see the same small town feel here in Airdrie. Ravenswood has better quality of life – that’s what kept us here...This is our forever home. #

Jennavieve & Jordan Homeowners since 2013

17163

MARCH POSSESSION

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patients and building a trusting relationship with them. He is a great listener, will clearly explain all treatment options and his principle goal is to provide all patients with a comfortable experience. Book with Dr. Fidanoski today: 587-775-9911

A I R D R I E

SPECIAL PRICING NOW IN EFFECT

66

airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

17179 MARCH POSSESSION #

PRODUCTS AVAILABLE: TOWNHOMES | DUPLEXES | LANED HOMES | FRONT GARAGE | SEMI-ESTATE

$

includes house, lot & GST

359,900*

includes house, lot & GST

SHELBY 3 - 1430 sq ft

87 RAVENSMOOR MANOR

218 RAVENSMOOR LINK

Features: • 3 Bedrooms • 9’ Main Floor Ceilings • Granite Countertops • Stainless Steel Appliances • Large Rear Deck

568,900*

been telling us - they love the location in southeast Airdrie, which offers an easy commute to Calgary and

...and much more!

SANTA FE 3 - 1719 sq ft

$ As close to downtown Calgary as half the communities in Calgary. The people who live in Ravenswood have

• Fireplace

#

17168

FEBRUARY POSSESSION

Features: • Laminate & Tile Flooring • 3 Bedrooms • Granite Countertops • Stainless Steel Appliances • East Facing Backyard • Upper Floor Laundry

382,671*

$

includes house, lot & GST

includes house, lot & GST

SANTIAGO 6 - 2363 sq ft

FALABELLA 2 - 1552 sq ft

1528 RAVENSMOOR WAY

213 RAVENSMOOR LINK

Features: • 4 Bedrooms • Backs onto Green Space • Executive Kitchen with built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Upper Floor Laundry • Main Floor Flex Room

#

17155

JULY POSSESSION

Features: • 3 Bedrooms • West Facing Backyard • Granite Countertops • Upgraded Built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Fireplace

Please contact your favourite builder to find out more details.

qualicocommunities.com/ravenswood

Qualico Communities are built with one thing in mind - you. Our thoughtfully master-planned spaces are built with an intuitive sense of community that nurtures individuals, families and friendships.

Contact Jamie McLachlin • Ph: 403.980.8625

Showhome: 1552 Ravensmoor Way

ravenswood@pacesetterhomes.com

Mon - Thurs: 2 - 8 p.m., Sat, Sun & Holidays: 12 - 5 pm, CLOSED FRIDAYS

Visit our sales centres or website to view all homes available

*See area manager for more information. Prices and promotions are subject to change.

w w w. s t e r l i n g h o m e s g r o u p . c o m


OUR BUILDERS LOVE RAVENSWOOD, AND YOU'LL SEE IT IN THE HOMES

MORTGAGE SOLUTIONS

A I R D R I E

SHOWHOME

$

609,900*

includes house, lot & GST

SANTIAGO 6 - 2350 sq ft 1552 RAVENSMOOR WAY Features: • Hardwood & Tile Floors • 9’ Main Floor Ceilings

Purchases Refinances Debt Consolidation Rate Comparison

• Executive Kitchen with built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Quartz Countertops

Sherry Jenkins Mortgage Consultant

133 1st St. NW Airdrie WeMortgage.ca

#

17174

P 403.804.3694 F 1.866.899.6813 E sherry@wemortgage.ca

JUNE POSSESSION

$

OUR RESIDENTS LOVE RAVENSWOOD, AND YOU WILL TOO.

We moved from a small town, so it was so refreshing to see the same small town feel here in Airdrie. Ravenswood has better quality of life – that’s what kept us here...This is our forever home. #

Jennavieve & Jordan Homeowners since 2013

17163

MARCH POSSESSION

399,215*

close access to downtown Airdrie's dining and shopping. With welcoming streets, parks and pathways, larger lots, and new lot pricing, maybe it's time for you to discover the value of Ravenswood.

Dr. Bob Fidanoski @ Airdrie Dental Choice enjoys getting to know each of his

patients and building a trusting relationship with them. He is a great listener, will clearly explain all treatment options and his principle goal is to provide all patients with a comfortable experience. Book with Dr. Fidanoski today: 587-775-9911

A I R D R I E

SPECIAL PRICING NOW IN EFFECT

66

airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

17179 MARCH POSSESSION #

PRODUCTS AVAILABLE: TOWNHOMES | DUPLEXES | LANED HOMES | FRONT GARAGE | SEMI-ESTATE

$

includes house, lot & GST

359,900*

includes house, lot & GST

SHELBY 3 - 1430 sq ft

87 RAVENSMOOR MANOR

218 RAVENSMOOR LINK

Features: • 3 Bedrooms • 9’ Main Floor Ceilings • Granite Countertops • Stainless Steel Appliances • Large Rear Deck

568,900*

been telling us - they love the location in southeast Airdrie, which offers an easy commute to Calgary and

...and much more!

SANTA FE 3 - 1719 sq ft

$ As close to downtown Calgary as half the communities in Calgary. The people who live in Ravenswood have

• Fireplace

#

17168

FEBRUARY POSSESSION

Features: • Laminate & Tile Flooring • 3 Bedrooms • Granite Countertops • Stainless Steel Appliances • East Facing Backyard • Upper Floor Laundry

382,671*

$

includes house, lot & GST

includes house, lot & GST

SANTIAGO 6 - 2363 sq ft

FALABELLA 2 - 1552 sq ft

1528 RAVENSMOOR WAY

213 RAVENSMOOR LINK

Features: • 4 Bedrooms • Backs onto Green Space • Executive Kitchen with built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Upper Floor Laundry • Main Floor Flex Room

#

17155

JULY POSSESSION

Features: • 3 Bedrooms • West Facing Backyard • Granite Countertops • Upgraded Built-in Stainless Steel Appliances • Fireplace

Please contact your favourite builder to find out more details.

qualicocommunities.com/ravenswood

Qualico Communities are built with one thing in mind - you. Our thoughtfully master-planned spaces are built with an intuitive sense of community that nurtures individuals, families and friendships.

Contact Jamie McLachlin • Ph: 403.980.8625

Showhome: 1552 Ravensmoor Way

ravenswood@pacesetterhomes.com

Mon - Thurs: 2 - 8 p.m., Sat, Sun & Holidays: 12 - 5 pm, CLOSED FRIDAYS

Visit our sales centres or website to view all homes available

*See area manager for more information. Prices and promotions are subject to change.

w w w. s t e r l i n g h o m e s g r o u p . c o m


homelife

IDEAS AND ADVICE FOR YOUR HOME, INSIDE AND OUT

Spring Ready 68 • Sweet Ensuites 78 • Midtown Moves 82


Springing into Action!

HOME LIFE ADVICE

“Set a deadline for spring cleaning to be done and do an item a day”

STORY BY DAWN SMITH

This is also a great time to ready your air conditioning unit for the warmer days of summer. Iron Eagle Sheet Metal Ltd. is an Airdrie-based company that provides both heating and air conditioning installation, repairs and maintenance for local businesses and residents.

S

pring is a time of refreshing, both indoors and out. Now is the perfect time to tackle those annual chores that help maintain a clean, organized home. Jacqui Jepson, owner and operator of The Pink Wand Cleaning Services, recommends making a list of the “must-dos” and spreading the work over a few days to eliminate being overwhelmed with annual tasks. “Set a deadline for spring cleaning to be done and do an item a day,” she says, noting there is real value in maintaining your home. “It makes your mind feel clean and organized so you can do a better job with your career and your family.” Jepson’s annual cleaning and organization list includes going through old clothes and setting aside for donation those that haven’t been worn in the last year. Pulling out the fridge and stove to clean behind them is also a must, as well as a very satisfying task, says Jepson. Other duties in the kitchen include scrubbing the inside of the fridge and oven as well as thoroughly wiping the inside of cupboards. Baseboards can be wiped down one floor at a time to avoid an overwhelming task. Windows should also be cleaned to enable the sun to shine in over the spring and summer months. Sills and tracks should be wiped weekly to make the annual task of window washing easier. Walls should be spot-washed in heavy traffic areas every two weeks, and wiped down with a dry mop annually to remove dust. Using a wet method can cause streaks to form. Carpets should also be cleaned annually, with spring being the perfect time. Jepson also recommends getting furnace ducts cleaned annually to keep the dust down in your home. Some general cleaning products recommended by Pink Wand staff include the Method line (e.g. almond wood floor cleaner), Pine-Sol (purple lavender for a great scent) and CLR bath and kitchen cleaner (yellow spray bottle) for removing soap scum. life

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airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

The company recommends the following tasks to keep outdoor air conditioning units running smoothly. • Check unit for proper refrigerant level and adjust if necessary. • Clean dirt, leaves and debris from the inside cabinet of the unit. • Inspect base pan for restricted drain openings and remove any obstructions. • Inspect the unit’s coil and cabinet and clean as needed. • Inspect the fan motor and blades for wear and damage. Lubricate older models as necessary. • Inspect control box, associated controls and accessories, wiring and connections. Controls may include contactors, relays, circuit boards, capacitors, sump heat and other accessories. All control box and electrical parts should be checked for wear or damage. • Inspect compressor and associated tubing for damage.


SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

69


HOME LIFE DEVELOPER PROFILE

Ravenswood has a village feel STORY BY DAWN SMITH

W

ith just three phases left in the well-loved community of Ravenswood and several showhomes opening in May, it’s a good time to check out what makes the area unique. Tucked away in Airdrie’s southeast, with easy access to the QEII, CrossIron Mills mall and local amenities, Ravenswood offers a family-friendly haven with a strong sense of community. “People who live in Ravenswood love living in Ravenswood,” says Cheryl Heilman, marketing manager for Qualico Communities, the developer behind the unique neighbourhood. According to Heilman, the community boasts a 99-per-cent satisfaction rate with homebuyers. Designed to feel like a small European village with traditional English architecture, Ravenswood has small-town charm with an appealing atmosphere that is hard to describe. “People who call Ravenswood home are having an experience about what it means to be in [a] community,” says Heilman. “We set the stage, but the people who bought wanted to be connected. We created a village, but they are villagers.” Qualico Communities opened the first phase of Ravenswood in 2009, and is currently offering lots in phases seven and eight in a variety of sizes. The final phase will likely open in 2018.

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airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

The community is chock-full of more than 20 acres of playgrounds, green spaces and a regional pathway that winds around the neighbourhood. It also features close access to Heloise Lorimer Elementary School, newly opened in 2016, and Airdrie’s only francophone school, École Francophone d’Airdrie. With five experienced builders creating dream homes ranging in size and type from townhomes to semi-estate residences, those who choose Ravenswood are getting a range of diversity – both street side and inside – that’s tough to beat. And with houses varying in price from the $360,000s for laned homes with detached garages to the $430,000s for residences with attached garages, Ravenswood has something for every price point. To sweeten the deal, Qualico Communities is now offering buyers thousands of dollars in discounts, making the area even more appealing. But Qualico Communities is also part of the larger city. The developer has sponsored numerous grassroots Airdrie initiatives and organizations such as the Main Street Art Project, Mayor’s Night of the Arts, Festival of Lights, Habitat for Humanity and Airdrie Public Library. The developer has also provided more than $500,000 in voluntary recreational levies. “We are community partners,” explains Heilman. “Giving back is the right thing to do.” life


CHBA - Cal

gary Region

2014

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

71


I

INNOVATIVE PRIVATE SALE AIRDRIANS MILLIONS OF

n Canada, real estate agents earn billions in commissions every year from buyers and sellers who are not necessarily aware of more modern alternatives. Armed with the vision of building something better - PropertyGuys.com has designed a modern-day alternative to agents. Their system streamlines the sales process by empowering buyers and sellers with the tools and services they need at a fraction of the cost. In order to make the process more economical and efficient, they cut out the expensive middleman – the agent. This idea can be controversial, especially for the competition. “Our view is that the real estate industry is broken and has been for a very long time. In fact, using a traditional agent is not only unnecessary but has also become way too expensive for the average Canadian. Here in Airdrie and the surrounding areas, sellers who use PropertyGuys.com pay an affordable flat fee of $3995 instead of paying a commission percentage. This decision can typically save them $10,000 - $25,000 when compared to the hefty commissions that most agents charge,” says PJ Hombert, local franchise owner of PropertyGuys.com. Hombert thinks that too often sellers just don’t question the money they actually spend on commission the same way they evaluate spending money on other things. “If they really examined the price they were going to be paying for the services that an agent provides, we believe they would think twice about using them,” says PJ.

“Many Airdrie citizens have been seeing more and more of our iconic round lollipop-style signs popping up. They’ve also most likely seen one of our many dynamic listings or social media posts, but I still get asked if I am a discount agent,” says Hombert. “My response is, absolutely not! I am not a real estate agent at all! That said, I do realize that we need to get awareness out there because many people don’t realize they have another option,” adds PJ. The PropertyGuys.com service includes most everything private sellers need to make their private sale experience more seamless. Instead of trying to be a jack-of-all-trades like

72

airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

most agents do – PropertyGuys.com employs a Pro Approach, which promises to deliver a better mix of technology and personalized service. In fact, their re-engineering of the traditional model replaces expensive listing agents with more qualified experts. The company is adamant that removing listing agents is long overdue. Instead of agents, their program includes domain experts like marketers, innovative real estate brokers, certified appraisers, experienced real estate lawyers and a unique answering and appointment-booking service. PropertyGuys.com insists that private sellers who use the system often sell faster because they don’t need to over-inflate their asking price to account for expensive commission. Pricing their property without commission

makes it more attractive to buyers who are always looking for a deal – especially in the current market environment. Another great feature of their program is the convenience for sellers to buy without needing to pay their modest flat-fee upfront. Aptly named, “List Now. Pay Later.”- this feature allows sellers to kick the can down the road soto-speak and only pay the flat-fee later. Most sellers choose to pay when their property actually sells. “This is a game changer,” explains Hombert. Until recently, sellers that did not have available funds would have to succumb to using an expensive agent. Not anymore. Another great advantage for Propertyguys. com is being able to help private sellers get the exposure from Realtor.ca as a result of a


ADVERTORIAL

SERVICE IS SAVING DOLLARS IN COMMISSIONS tain View and Wheatland Counties. Born and raised in Alberta and then the Yukon, Hombert always had that go-getter personality. As a young adult she became interested in the real estate industry and after many personal experiences with private home sales, she became a champion of the cause with PropertyGuys.com.

Above, PJ Hombert, franchisee for Rocky View, Mountain View and Wheatland is ready to help you sell your home! Left, PJ is proud to be a supporter of her community. partnership formed with real estate brokers (who are members of the Canadian Real Estate Association). With this feature, sellers can now reach a wider audience, including buyers who work with agents. Marketing a home on both major real estate websites (any many others) gives sellers all the exposure they’ll ever need to get their property SOLD at a mere fraction of the cost they’d potentially pay an agent. “We are focused on our customers getting their property in front of as many people as possible, so we offer multiple sourced marketing, including sponsored target marketing ads, to catch the attention of buyers.” Readers may be wondering right about now whether the service actually performs as advertised?

PJ Hombert contends that it does, but don’t just take her word for it. The hundreds of local sellers who have already put it to test can tell you about their success first hand! If it sounds too good to be true – it’s important to know that Hombert first discovered PropertyGuys. com when she herself used the system to sell her own property nearly 12 years ago. With her business savvy background she leaped at the opportunity to purchase a franchise and moved her family to Airdrie. Hombert has been the Airdrie and areas’ PropertyGuys.com franchise owner for three years. Based on her initial success, she has recently bought an additional franchise license. Her territory now covers Rocky View, Moun-

Her territories have become successful in record time, ranking consistently on the top of the national leaderboard in listings and revenue. Hombert has really helped place PropertyGuys.com on the map in Southern Alberta through her hard work with and community involvement. You can catch PropertyGuys.com Rocky View, Mountain View and Wheatland Counties year round attending community events, local parades, volunteering for various programs, running an info booth at the farmers market or catching one of their many youth teams rock PropertyGuys.com sponsorships. “In 2016, we estimate having saved locals well over 2 Million Dollars, which is a lot of sold signs. Our 2017 is only going to get better. Brand awareness, educating buyers and sellers, recruitment of Property Marketing Associates and opening multiple offices within this large territory is on the agenda, “says Hombert. “January started off with a bang as one of our enthusiastic Property Marketing Associates, Dustin Coates, opened a regional office in Olds, AB, which is a great addition to our two Airdrie and Calgary Headquarters!” PropertyGuys.com is the only real estate private sale company in Southern Alberta, although many hybrid real estate brokerages and agents claim to be private sale, they are not. PropertyGuys.com says they are often imitated, but never duplicated. The company has been around going strong for 18 years now, proving that their innovative model is here to stay.

Rocky View, Mountain View & Wheatland Counties 403-980-7748 SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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READY, SET, GROW!

HOME LIFE GARDENING

STORY BY DAWN SMITH

“Although it’s too early to plant outdoors, there is still plenty that Airdrians can do to ensure their garden is ready for the coming season”

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A

lthough it’s too early to plant outdoors, there is still plenty that Airdrians can do to ensure their garden is ready for the coming season. The first step is to clean up. Clear and compost old dead stalks of perennials, leaves and any debris that may be in your flower beds, as dead organic matter may harbour disease. Trees and shrubs can be pruned, as long as they haven’t budded, according to Crystal Bazar, urban forestry technician with the City of Airdrie. She suggests removing branches that cross, diseased and dead wood, and anomalies. Trees and shrubs should also be well watered before they come out of dormancy. “A slow trickle of water just outside the drip line of the tree is ideal,” says Bazar, noting those who wish to fertilize their trees should do so before they bud. She recommends a well-balanced fertilizer including micronutrients, such as 10-10-10.


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If your lawn is snow free, give it a good rake to remove debris, and consider aerating to allow oxygen to reach the roots. According to the Nature Conservancy of Canada, birdhouses and feeders should also be given a good scrub – to avoid diseases, pests, bacteria and moulds – in preparation for returning feathery friends. If you compost, now is a good time to turn over your pile. If the ground is thawed, add well-composted material (either your own or purchased) or manure to the soil to add the nutrients needed to support growth. If you are expanding existing flowerbeds or creating new ones, now is a good time to dig out those areas and add compost or manure to improve the soil. Although you may be itching to get your green thumbs dirty, take the time to plan this year’s garden. Researching which vegetables, flowers, trees and shrubs suit Airdrie’s growing conditions may help ensure a more successful growing season. Be sure to mix perennials and annuals for all-season colour. If you are unsure of what plants are suitable, visit a garden centre or ask an experienced friend for help in choosing. Consider learning about plants native to the region (but be wary of invasive species) and adding them to your garden. Finally, watch for your spring bulbs to make their appearance. If you were lucky enough to plant Canada 150 bulbs, also known as the Maple Leaf Tulip, last fall, those tulips will soon be appearing alongside other springflowering varieties. According to Bazar, residents will notice those elegant red-and-white tulips – selectively bred to resemble the Canadian flag – appearing in beds around the city in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary. life

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MCKEE HOMES REIDBUILT HOMES HOMES BY DREAM

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HOME LIFE BUILDER PROFILE STORY BY DAWN SMITH

SLOKKER BRINGS THE STYLE

“It will be a fantastic local urban community, excellent for young couples or singles who want to strike out on their own”

H

igh-class quality at an affordable price is what buyers can expect when purchasing a Slokker West home. The company, whose first project in Airdrie was completed in Ravenswood about two years ago, has an obvious pride in its workmanship that stems from more than 85 years of international experience on building projects of all sizes. Slokker West’s Ravenswood project, located in Airdrie’s southeast, sold out in just under a year and a half, and now the building and development company is kicking off two new projects in Airdrie: Georgetown in Reunion and the Townhomes of Canals. According to Peter Paauw, president of Slokker Canada West Inc., homes in these two new locations will offer the same level of value for the buyers’ money as all of the company’s projects do. “We have learned over the years that the best way to work is to build something of long-lasting value, so in all of our projects we look at quality and affordability,” he says. Buyers who purchase one of Slokker West’s 38 freehold duplexes in Georgetown, located in Airdrie’s northwest corner, will also

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be able to take advantage of numerous amenities situated close by, including grocery stores, transit, downtown shopping, parks and health services. Herons Crossing Elementary School is also located nearby, making Reunion an ideal area for young families. Those who choose to buy a Slokker West duplex in the Reunion community will enjoy fantastic interior selection, unique floor plans and award-winning, professional interior designs – all at prices starting from the low $300,000s. Paauw said the Townhomes of Canals will be perfect for individuals who are looking to downsize or own their first home in an alreadyestablished community. Slokker’s Canals project offers affordable, modern townhomes starting from the $270,000s with state-of-the-art quality construction, floor plans that maximize living space and high-quality kitchens with premium cabinetry and brand-name appliances. Buyers can enjoy the incredible walking paths and exceptional views that come with living in the desirable west-side community of the


Two new townhome projects come to Airdrie this year

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Canals, which is well-known for its high-end homes and beautiful walking paths, along with an upscale, urban lifestyle. “We love that area,” says Paauw, explaining great restaurants, trendy coffee shops and other boutique services are within easy walking distance of the new building site. “It will be a fantastic local urban community, excellent for young couples or singles who want to strike out on their own.” Paauw says when it comes to value for money, Slokker West’s Canals project can’t be beat. “If you are looking for the best quality for the price, Canals is the place of choice,” he says. life

Blue carts will be delivered in March and collection will begin in April. Find out more about changes to your waste and recycling by visiting airdrie.ca.

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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HOME LIFE ROOMS

Sweet Ensuites Wood-effect tiles surround the soaker tub and superior glass shower in the Kornell Granite countertops by Broadview Homes and floor-to-ceiling tiles (Ravenswood) highlight the Genesis Builders Group ensuite (Bayside) Santiago 6 by Sterling Homes (Ravenswood) has double vanity sinks and a corner soaker tub

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The master ensuite is an oasis from the everyday stresses of life. Airdrie builders are masters at providing heavenly spa-like treatments in your own home.

Floating soaker tub in the Excel Eaton (Hillcrest)


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HOME LIFE COLUMN

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Look Up! “We are going to see signs of more stability and balance in sales and pricing as inventory is bought up in the spring market”

W Wendy Pra 403.863.4785 wendy@frogmediainc.ca

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hat we thought would happen, happened. What we didn’t want to happen, happened. And what we hope happens, will happen! We thought that with the economy and price of oil going as low as it did, real estate prices and sales would dip, and they did. Benchmark prices were down 3.4 per cent in the last quarter of 2016 over the same time the previous year; however, sales were up 3.6 per cent.


With our economy at the end of 2016 as it was, unfortunately we received another kick with the new lending rules that took effect in November. It slowed the market to almost a standstill. January came quickly though, buyer confidence increased, and activity has picked up. We are going to see signs of more stability and balance in sales and pricing as inventory is bought up in the spring market. This will continue through the second quarter. When the economy and employment rates get better, sales should increase in the third and fourth quarters. Buyers are still looking for a great deal when buying a home, and are really plugged in. They are very educated when they are ready to write an offer because they have seen a lot of houses, and have had a lot more conversations with their Realtors. They know what value is to them, because they have had the time to figure it out. Sellers are pulling out all the stops to capture buyers’ attention as well. They know the competition; they know what needs to be done before they list their home, and how to navigate the market. Motivation and expert advice helps them position themselves to get sold. I often have funny stories to share about selling homes … just ask me. But recently I was showing a home and the potential buyer saw there was a skylight in the house. They announced to me “I am NOT buying a house with a sunroof” and quickly left the house. Honestly … it is never dull! life

– Shilo Storey, RE/MAX First

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SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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Midtown Marvels

HOME LIFE SHOWHOME

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T

his thoughtfully designed community offers residents an urban oasis artfully poised on more than 90 acres in the heart of Airdrie. Midtown provides a rare sense of openness in the midst of the city. With plentiful outdoor conveniences interwoven amongst inspiring new homes, you’ll find the perfect backdrop to have it all. The builder group of Creations by Shane, Excel Homes, Shane Homes and Trico Homes have created a parade of choices in a variety of housing options, including street towns, laned duplexes, duplexes with frontdrive garages and single-family homes with double-front garages. Find the Midtown showhome parade off Eighth Street S.W. and Midtown Gate S.W.

SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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Airdrie and area Show Home Map A quick guide to those advertised projects now selling in the area!

Bayside Pier 11 by Genesis Developments featuring Genesis Homes See ad page 69 Bayview by Genesis Developments featuring Genesis Homes. See ad page 23 Canals by Slokker See ad page 3 Chinook Gate by Brookfield. See ad page 7 Coopers Crossing by Westmark featuring Harder Homes, Lifestyle Homes, Emerald Homes, McKee Homes and Vesta See ad page 124 Georgetown at Reunion by Slokker See ad page 3

Hillcrest by Apex featuring Excel Homes See ad page 5 Kings Heights by Melcor See ad page 43 Midtown by Wenzel Developments and Apex featuring Shane Homes & Excel Homes See ad page 2 Ravenswood by Qualico featuring McKee Homes See ad page 61 Southwinds by Mattamy Homes See ad page 14 The Gates at Hillcrest by Mattamy Homes See ad page 14 Vista Crossing by Dream Developments featuring Homes by Dream, McKee Homes & ReidBuilt Homes See ad page 75

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MEET THE MOVERS, SHAKERS AND BUSINESS MAKERS

Making Mountains 88 • She-preneurs 92 • Dollars and Sense 84 SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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WORK LIFE COLUMN

businesslife

WITH SHAY BARKER

The whole is always greater than the sum W

hat is a whole community? A whole community is one that provides an excellent quality of life to a wide range of people. Whole communities provide a variety of public services to their citizens, focusing on diverse modes of economic development, transportation, housing stock and community recreation opportunities that appeal to households at different life stages. A whole community places emphasis on local job and education opportunities, and an environment for citizens to live healthy lives. Whole communities create vibrant public spaces, engage in arts and culture, and continually work toward more sustainable practices across the community. A whole community is created through positive engagement, conversation and collaboration between the public and municipal administration. This holds true for interactions between members of the public too. The best whole communities have citizens with a broad understanding of short- and long-range goals that will strengthen the fabric of the community, and make it sustainable and vibrant into the future. Those same citizens strongly believe in investing in their community – be it by opening a local business, purchasing from a local business, or giving back through charity. They participate in effective public decision-making, and contribute to the wellness of the community. In a sense, citizens of whole communities raise what the community is doing well to the forefront.

“A whole community is an attractive community – to visitors, potential residents, potential new businesses and investors” There are a number of citizens, organizations and businesses that have contributed to strengthening the fabric of Airdrie through various efforts. Just this past winter, a group of people from Airdrie joined forces to launch the #YAYAirdrie campaign. This feel-good social media campaign was created to provide an avenue for Airdrie residents to share their positive stories, videos and photos of the things that make Airdrie great. Airdrie Angel is a program that promotes working together to lift up Airdrie residents in need. To date, the program has assisted 46 families, and nearly $90,000 of money and gifts have been donated by the community. Airdrie Dads, formed initially as a Facebook group for like-minded dads in the Airdrie area, has become an advocate for the community through a number of initiatives. The group hosts a charity golf tournament every year, and most recently, was the force behind nominating Airdrie as a Kraft Hockeyville community. Though only a few are mentioned, there are so many businesses, community groups and individuals that contribute to building Airdrie toward a whole community, and there is immense value in supporting them. Why is being a whole community so important? A whole community is an attractive community – to visitors, potential residents, potential new businesses and investors. The more a community is able to express long-range goals for the future; the more a community and its residents invest in the community, its programs, its infrastructure and its businesses; the more whole it becomes. It is proven that a community that is unique, one that invests in arts and culture, recreation, gathering spaces, and infrastructure, is more economically sustainable. Whole communities attract a breadth of diverse people and unique businesses, strengthening the fabric of that community. So, as residents of Airdrie, ask yourself how you are contributing to make our city a whole community. Let’s continue to work to raise our community up, and continue to show the world why Airdrie is the best place to live. life

– Shay Barker, economic development officer, City of Airdrie

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WORK LIFE RESEARCH

Local market research just got easier STORY BY SHAY BARKER

I

n late January 2017, Airdrie Economic Development launched a local market research microsite. Working closely with Calgary-based tech startup Localintel, who developed the new web tool for businesses, the City aimed to fulfill the needs of those seeking a one-stop shop related to local market research. The tool aims to support local entrepreneurs, aspiring businesses and existing businesses by providing relevant information about the local market, including business climate data, industry-specific information, real estate listings and competition analysis. The new microsite confronts a challenge that the City’s economic development team hears from businesses time and time again. Kent Rupert, economic development team leader, says “as economic developers, we continuously hear that it is challenging for businesses to find relevant and easy-to-use information in one place. “It is overwhelming for an entrepreneur to find the right resources to help them build a useful business plan, which is why we explored and developed this tool,” explains Rupert. Airdrie, along with the City of Calgary (Calgary Economic Development) have developed microsites, with more municipalities and economic development organizations signing on with Localintel. The

startup company, while in its infancy, is well versed in the needs of economic development organizations and small businesses, and the City believes this tool will ease much of the pressure placed on entrepreneurs starting out.

“It is overwhelming for an entrepreneur to find the right resources to help them build a useful business plan, which is why we explored and developed this tool” “We look forward to getting reviews of this tool from businesses and entrepreneurs, and working with Localintel to evolve the site into the future. We hope [it] becomes a staple resource for our clients,” says Rupert. Airdrie Economic Development is excited to add the tool to its arsenal of resources available to entrepreneurs. life To learn more and to use the tool, visit http://airdrie.ecdev.org

KATHY Anderson

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SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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WORK LIFE GROWING BUSINESS

The Magic behind the Mountain

STORY BY SHELLEY BOETTCHER PHOTO BY SERGEI BELSKI

J

ane Anderson moved to southern Alberta with the idea of returning to farm life. She and her husband planned to raise their young family in a rural, small-town setting similar to what Anderson had known growing up. But after relocating to a farm just outside of Airdrie, she saw that the city needed safe, licensed, accredited childcare for its burgeoning population. “And I just love daycares. I couldn’t stand not having a daycare,” she says with a laugh. So, with the help of her father, she bought the former RCMP building and renovated it, opening their first daycare in the city. Twenty-five years later, Anderson is still in business as the owner of the Magic Mountain Child Development Centres.

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In January, she and her team – which now includes her daughter, Laura Bancroft – opened their fourth location in the community of Sierra Springs. (Footprints for Learning Preschool, their fifth business, operates for children ages three to five.) More than 1,100 children attend the centres, which offer full-time daycare, preschool programs and before- and after-school care, including summer programming, for children up to the end of Grade 4. There’s even bussing to and from local schools, for children who attend the before- and after-school care. While each location has slightly different options, they all have book nooks, indoor gyms, play areas and separate toddler areas for the tiniest


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www.airdrieecho.com RBC Financial Planning is a business name used by Royal Mutual Funds Inc. (RMFI). Financial planning services and investment advice are provided by RMFI. RMFI, RBC Global Asset Management Inc., Royal Bank of Canada, Royal Trust Corporation of Canada and The Royal Trust Company are separate corporate entities which are affiliated. RMFI is licensed as a financial services firm in 36425 (11/2016) the province of Quebec. ® / ™ Trademark(s) of Royal Bank of Canada. © Royal Bank of Canada, 2017.

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WORK LIFE GROWING BUSINESS

“It ignites my own passions for life when I share time with [children]. It’s very rewarding.” kids. Discovery Zones ensure safe, interesting areas for kids to explore the world around them. Building centres let kids see how things, such as toasters and other small appliances, work. Science and Math Stations help with pre-numeracy and numeracy skills. There are even Stop Motion Animation Technology Centres for older children to learn basic animation skills. “The kids absolutely love it,” Anderson says. For her, the daycares are more than just a job. They’re a fun, fascinating way to learn and be around young kids every day. “Children feel each day is an adventure. Whether they’re working or playing, they’re just excited because they’re learning new things,” she says. “It ignites my own passions for life when I share time with them. It’s very rewarding.” While Anderson has no current plans to expand her business further in Airdrie, she admits she has her eye on potential sites in Calgary. “It’s not really a matter of keeping myself busy,” she says. “But the type of care we provide is the type of care parents are searching for.” Perhaps not surprisingly, Anderson has known since a young age that

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she wanted to work with children. Raised on a farm near Vermilion, Alta., she moved first to Edmonton, where she studied early childhood education at the University of Alberta. She didn’t intend to go into business for herself, but her sister-in-law needed a daycare for her own young family and asked if Anderson would come along to tour a few. But, after looking what was in the market, Anderson figured they had more to offer than what was available. “I thought, ‘Why don’t we just open our own daycare?” she recalls. “So we did.” Throughout the following decade, Anderson opened several successful daycares in and around Edmonton, but sold them all when the opportunity came up to buy land in southern Alberta. “I’m a farm girl and we liked the idea of raising our kids in the country, so we bought some land just outside of Airdrie,” Anderson says. They’ve never looked back. “Airdrie has a lot more stores and services than when we moved here, but I love that it still has that small-town feel,” Anderson says. “It’s been awesome.” life


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WORK LIFE PROFILES AMAZINE WOMEN

Sydnee Blackwood, 15, Aiden Clark, 3, Leigha Blackwood and Colin Clark go for a slide

She-preneurs A

STORY BY SHELLEY BOETTCHER | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI

t first glance, the following three businesses have little in common. One is geared toward young children. One is for beer-loving adults. And the third is for businesses owners. But what all three entrepreneurs share is a passion for their community and a love for what they do.

LEIGHA BLACKWOOD

YeeHaw Play Leigha Blackwood and her husband Colin Clark found inspiration for their new business after the birth of their third child. They’d seen indoor playgrounds for toddlers in Calgary and elsewhere, but they couldn’t find anything similar at home in Airdrie. So they decided to create it themselves. And, in October 2016, YeeHaw Play — Airdrie’s first indoor playground for children 10 and under — opened its doors. A massive climbing structure, bouncy castle, wiggle track with little cars for kids to “drive,” four birthday party rooms and a deli are just some of the offerings in the 8,000-square-foot space.

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Down the road, they plan to expand their facility, adding options for older children and adults. “We’d like to make it a full family entertainment centre,” says Blackwood. With backgrounds in IT and business development, both Blackwood and Clark had the know-how to get a new idea off the ground. It took two years, however, to find the right location and to get the licensing and equipment in place. But Blackwood has never doubted their decision to create their company in Airdrie. “We live here and work here, and our kids go to school here,” she says. “This is a great community to be a part of.”


“The business community here is just that: a community” KARA FULTON

Thumbprint Craft Beer Market Kara Fulton was on a date with her husband Dave when she tried a Hoegaarden beer for the first time. Then she tried another beer. And another. She began visiting breweries and a few years later, she realized she had become an aficionado. “My interest just exploded,” she says. But she couldn’t find a beer store in Alberta like the ones she had visited – and loved – in other parts of the world. “We figured if we ever won the lottery one day, we’d open one,” she says. Then Fulton’s father died, leaving her his estate. “He said, ‘I think you have a great idea and you should do it,’” Fulton says. “Out of the tragedy of his death, we could realize our dream.” Thumbprint Craft Beer Market opened in January, and features at least 600 different beers, all for sale as individual bottles, plus eight growler taps. The store name pays homage to Fulton’s father who, before he died, gave her his thumbprint. Combined with her own, it forms the store’s logo. “It’s like the rings in a tree trunk, symbolizing the old generation and the new,” she says. “I never could have done this without him. It’s a dream come true.”

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WORK LIFE PROFILES

DEANNA HUNTER

Ridgegate Consulting Deanna Hunter spent more than two decades working her way up the corporate human resources ladder. But two years ago, she was laid off, shortly after the economy started to falter. “I was the director of talent acquisitions, and we weren’t acquiring any talent,” she says with a laugh. Not one to be down for long, she created Ridgegate Consulting. Named after the Airdrie community where she lives, the two-year-old company offers human resources help for small businesses.

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“I live here and I want to be part of the community in a significant way,” Hunter says. “My ideal customer is someone who doesn’t need a full-time HR person, but needs some expertise,” she says. “Someone who wants an HR expert on speed dial.” Born and raised in Saskatchewan, Hunter completed a business degree at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon before heading to Calgary for a job. Then another. And another, including time at both WestJet and Shaw. She liked living in the big city but was drawn to Airdrie for its community vibe. “Airdrie is small enough that you can know people, but you don’t know everybody,” she says. “And the business community here is just that: a community.” life


WORK LIFE COLUMN

financiallife

You plan your vacations … do you plan your finances?

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f you are like most Canadians, you probably spent more time researching your last vacation than reviewing your finances. And while vacations are important, so are the benefits of a financial plan. Working with a financial planner can make things easier – they can help you create a plan for today and tomorrow. Here are some tips to help you with financial planning in 2017.

MANAGING DEBT Look at money coming in and going out and make two lists. The first is your monthly income; the second, your monthly expenses. Make a list of your debts. It may feel a bit overwhelming at first, but this will help you see a complete picture. Tackle debts one at a time, focusing on the highest interest rate loans first. As soon as you can fully pay one back, check it off and move on to the next.

DR. DENSON DR. MORADIAN Dr. O’Brien Dr. Laflamme (bilingual) Dr. Karen pinchak Carstairs 1 208 10th Ave N 403.337.2373

AIRDRIE 1 804 MAIN STREET SE 403.912.7557

MANAGING CASH Spend less than you earn. Having a budget puts you in control. Each month after you pay your essential expenses – like mortgage, bills – set aside extra cash towards savings. Pay off high-interest-rate credit card debt first. This will have a good impact on your overall financial health and help you worry less and save more. Set up an emergency fund so you can deal with any unforeseen situations, like a car repair, a roof leak or even a job loss. A good rule of thumb is to have at least three months of income available as emergency funds. Remember, tips such as these can get you started, but a good financial plan can provide peace of mind that you are doing your best today to help ensure you and your family will be taken care of tomorrow. life

Carman Thiessen, CFP, is a financial planner with RBC Financial Planning

Book online at smartauto.ca Save $10

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&

On Centre

presents

Amazing The 7th Annual

2017

Airdrie

WOMEN

AWARDS LUNCHEON

Tickets $50

Friday, May 12 11:30 am

Don’t Delay! Tickets sell out early! Purchase online only at woodsidegc.com/store

The Woods Restaurant, Airdrie

Prosecco Reception Gourmet Lunch Live Entertainment Awards

With Special Guest

Comedian Cory Mack!

Star of CBC TV and Radio

The biggest celebration of women in Airdrie! Featuring the unveiling of 52 W EEKS: Heroes Series by Veronica Funk

Amazing Courage Amazing Leadership

Great Door Prizes! Swag Bags!

Amazing Promise Amazing Determination Amazing Heart

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AWBA

Airdrie Women’s Shelter Campaign

is pleased to make a $5 donation to P.O.W.E.R. for each ticket sold


locallife A C LO S E R LO O K AT YO U R C O M M U N I T Y

Safe at Last 100 • Amazing Women 103 • Porcine Producers 121


LOCAL LIFE CIT YLIFE

STORY BY JILL IVERSON | PHOTO BY SERGEI BELSKI

Curbside recycling 101 Y

ou should soon be receiving your blue cart, but do you know what to do with it? Most people know the basics of recycling but these tricks from the City of Airdrie will help you figure out if something is recyclable or not. It is tricky to know if plastic film is recyclable. To know for sure, do the stretch test. If the plastic film stretches, it can be recycled (like plastic wrap and zip-close plastic bags). If it’s tough to stretch or crinkly like a chip bag, it’s not recyclable. Paper and wax-lined cups are tricky because the City is making changes to the way it disposes of cups. Wax-lined cups should no longer go in the green cart with your organics as it’s been found the wax does not break down during the recycling process and compromises the final product. Waxed cups should now be placed in the garbage. Unwaxed paper cups can be recycled in your blue cart. To know if a cup is waxed or unwaxed, do the scratch test. Scratch your fingernail along the inside – if it is waxed, you will see a layer of wax under your fingernail.

Test your blue-cart smarts with this quiz Which of the following items can go in the blue-cart recycling program? • Clean zip-close baggies and plastic wrap; • Pie plates; • Metal jar lids; • Sauce jars; • Gift wrap paper; • Milk jugs; • Empty paper cups; • Catalogues. Answer – all of the above With organics and blue-cart recycling, what’s left to go in your garbage? Common items that are considered waste are: • Chip bags, granola bar wrappers, other foil-type packaging; • Diapers; • Pet waste; • Broken glass (must be placed in a container marked broken glass); • Waxed cups, frozen juice cans, used tissue; • Soiled aluminum foil; • Food Styrofoam; • Beverage container lids and disposable coffee cup lids (although these have a recycling symbol on them, they are too light and small to go through the recycling machinery); • A privacy bag. Blue cart collection will not be the same day as your waste and organics collection. For a schedule of your community’s recycling, organics and waste collection, visit airdrie.ca. And while you’re there, make sure you sign up through MyAirdrie for free text or email reminders of your waste, recycling and organics collection days. life

Have questions about recycling? The City of Airdrie’s Waste and Recycling team is happy to help. Visit airdrie.ca, email wasteandrecycling@airdrie.ca or call 403-948-0246.

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P.O.W.E.R. brings change

LOCAL LIFE JOURNEY

Emergency resources to protect Airdrie women STORY BY ELLEN KELLY

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itnessing domestic violence in the Safeway parking lot was a life-changing event for Crystal Boys, founder and president of P.O.W.E.R. (Protecting Our Women with Emergency Resources) because it began a journey, both back – to face related trauma – and forward to the formation of an organization determined to establish a women’s shelter in Airdrie. Boys, a domestic abuse survivor who spent her first weeks in a women’s shelter after leaving a violent relationship, knows the importance of shelter services to keeping women safe. Without somewhere to go and a plan to manage the future, many women are forced to stay in an abusive situation. Her journey forward has led, in April 2015, to P.O.W.E.R., a non-profit organization that seeks to provide women in Airdrie and district with the means to leave an abusive environment through emergency resources, education and empowerment, thus creating a safe and sustainable community. Governed by a board of directors, the organization received registered non-profit charitable organization status on Dec. 1, 2016 and is now in the process of securing government funding, grants and sponsorships. Airdrie MLA Angela Pitt advocates for a shelter in Airdrie and looks forward to the completion of the project. She says, “There is a need for a shelter in Airdrie; shelters in the surrounding area are full to capacity leaving women at risk.”

“Great services are in place … but they aren’t long term and they aren’t the full circle that these women need” P.O.W.E.R. has established a hamper program which provides women with basic necessities (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, etc.) because many women leave with nothing. ADVAS (Airdrie and District Victims Assistance Society) and Community Links provide crisis response and counselling and will continue to do so. “Great services are in place,” says Boys, “but they aren’t long term and they aren’t the full circle that these women need.” The shelter vision includes on- and off-site counselling, access to government resources, Alberta Works assistance, and court prep/support in partnership with Community Links and ADVAS. “A good shelter gives access to all these resources and empowers women to move on successfully,” says Boys. Access to low-income housing – giving women extended time to become emotionally ready to move on, settle their families and get back into the workforce – is the final piece of the vision. “You can’t rebuild your life in 21 days,” says Boys. Community interest has been extensive at events like the Airdrie Women’s Show and Light Up the Night. Private donations and support from service groups is very encouraging. P.O.W.E.R.’s first big event, the New Year’s Eve Gala, was well supported and will become an annual event. The first annual golf tournament will be held on May 29 at Woodside Golf Course and will include prizes, dinner and social activities. Smaller fundraisers will be held between major events. In the near future, P.O.W.E.R. will add an educational program that focuses on healthy attitudes, language and relationships at middle-school level. Eventually a men’s program may be added. Boys says it’s the women that keep her going. “Every time I want to quit, I think, what about those women. No one should have to live in that lifestyle. It’s terrible. It gets me every time.” She wants all women to know you can walk tall, come out of a relationship, start over and be proud. life

Airdrie by the numbers Domestic violence on the rise in Airdrie

• Average 3 domestic violence calls per day; • Each call uses the resources of 2 police responders; • Estimated only 1 in 10 cases of abuse are ever reported; • Unemployment and financial strain contribute to domestic violence.

Visit airdriepower.com and airdrievictimassistance. com for more statistics and information

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Safe at Last

LOCAL LIFE JOURNEY

Christelle Hitimana with her husband Emmanuel Maniraguha

STORY BY ELLEN KELLY | PHOTOS BY KRIST Y REIMER

O

nce a year, Christelle Hitimana’s mother makes the long trip to Airdrie from Rwanda to visit her daughter. Other family members come to visit as well, drawn together by the bonds of love and shared history, but also by a bond forged through shared tragedy. Hitimana says she still doesn’t understand what happened but is strengthened and comforted by her faith and the resiliency of the human spirit. In April 1994, 18-year-old Hitimana was living in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda with her parents and siblings. My mother was a social worker and my dad was an engineer/architect. Everything was looked after; our parents were able to afford everything. We had a quiet, good life.

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The remarkable story of one woman’s escape from Rwanda Very suddenly, life changed. The genocide began and although Hitimana’s family had no political affiliations, they were on the “to be killed” list due to their ancestry. On April 17, the family left the imminent danger in the city for safety in Butare where her aunt, uncle, and five children lived. The trip usually takes two hours but it took us two days. We had to pay money. We had to go through a lot to get there. My aunt was my mom’s only sibling and they were identical twins. We grew up knowing we had two mothers. Other families had fled there and all were waiting to see what was going to happen. You don’t understand what is happening. You don’t have the power to change anything. The soldiers came and there was a massacre. Hitimana’s father, aunt, uncle and many others including children were shot. Hitimana, her mother and her siblings survived. There were bodies protecting us from getting shot. There was no other protection. Eventually the family went back to the aunt’s house and when the phone rang Hitimana’s mother answered. It was a cousin who said he would come with a truck and take them to a safer place. We had just made supper. When the militaries came back they ate everything, then destroyed everything. They were looking for God knows what. We had to go back into the house we were taken from because there wasn’t an option. The neighbours didn’t want to help because if the militaries found out they would kill everybody. We just went back waiting for … we didn’t know…. The cousin took them to his family (Hitimana’s mom’s family) far out in the country where they lived for a month. The next day we were in the fields working like everybody because we were so many to feed. No grief, nothing. We were still covered with blood. We had on our mind how we were going to survive what was coming rather than what happened. We grew up in a Christian home and we were so mad at God. Why would we survive just to be killed again? Hitimana’s father’s relatives lived close to the Congo border and put a plan in place to help. Congo was safe but crossing the border was another story. There were gates and guards and more killing. We waited and when it was a good time, we went to Congo.

It is estimated that 800,000 to 1,000,000 died in a three-month period during the Rwandan genocide. Hitimana’s father’s family took care of her for a year and a half. Her mother returned to Rwanda which was then safe and Hitimana and her sisters spent time in Central African Republic. From there, her sisters then went to Togo but Hitimana, who met her husband, also a Rwandan refugee, in Congo, went to France. Amazingly, we met a man in charge of the airport who offered to help us go to Europe. He said that if his children were in these conditions he would want someone to help them. We arrived in France without a visa or any valid passport, but when God is in charge, amazing and unexplainable things can happen! They spent the next four years in France living in a ghetto for refugees with no opportunity to work or get ahead and witnessing hopelessness, vandalism, violence and drug abuse. “We needed to find a place to raise our children,” she says. The family, which now included two small daughters, emigrated to Canada, first to Quebec in 2003 where a third daughter was born and then to Calgary and in 2013, to Airdrie. Optimism, faith, determination and a background in educational psychology have helped Hitimana pursue a career as a youth worker in the Francophone school system, then at the Boys and Girls Club where she shares her faith and her story to show that human beings can go through tough times and recover. “Bad stuff happens but you keep going,” she says. “There is hope; always there’s hope.” Since moving to Airdrie, Hitimana has completed the first draft of a book relating her experiences, survival and the strength of the human spirit. She has also completed the SMARTstart program for new entrepreneurs and is enjoying watching her new business take root and grow. Meals Made Easy is a meal-assembly business which provides prepared ingredients and recipes for customers to take home and cook later or freeze. She is currently operating out of the commercial kitchen at the Town and Country Centre and is looking for a storefront. Hitimana likes the friendliness of Airdrie. “We feel like we would be feeling if we were in our own country,” she says. “We have nice neighbours and our kids have friends.” life

“Bad stuff happens but you keep going. There is hope; always there’s hope.” SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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LOCAL LIFE GIVING How did the idea come about? We were inspired to start our chapter after my mom started a successful 100 Women Who Care chapter in Regina, Sask. Being busy with work and family we couldn’t seem to find the time to join a structured volunteer group. This concept gave us an opportunity to make a difference in the community without a huge time commitment. Who are the founding members? Amy Forrest, Jane LeBlanc, Melissa Thome, Stephanie Rabel How successful have you been to date in reaching the 100-women target? We are getting so close! As of Jan. 31, we have 89 members. We hope to reach our goal of 100 by our meeting on Feb. 28. How much money has been given to the community so far? $13,900 (L to R) Melissa Thome, Amy Forrest, Jane LeBlanc, Stephanie Rabel

PHOTO BY CHARLENE CODIO

airdrielife recently caught up with Amy Forrest of 100 Women Who Care Airdrie, formed last fall. The organization’s goal is to gather 100 (or more) women from the community, four times a year, and collect $100 per member. Each meeting, the group also votes on a local charity or non-profit organization to support with the funds. The group’s combined efforts translate to $40,000 annually in support of the Airdrie and area community.

What organizations have benefited? Airdrie P.O.W.E.R ($6,100); Airdrie Festival of Lights ($7,800) What has been the biggest challenge? Luckily the group has been awesome! I suppose reaching our goal of 100 has been a challenge, but that was to be expected in the current economy and relatively small city (as compared to Calgary or Edmonton). What has surprised you most about starting this in Airdrie? We have been pleasantly surprised to learn about our local Airdrie charities. Many of them are relatively unknown, and even those that are commonly known have special financial needs and function in unique ways. An example would be the Airdrie Festival of Lights functioning year round to support youth and underprivileged community groups. It is truly eye-opening to hear the charity leaders speak from their hearts about their needs and to see how genuinely appreciative they are to receive our funds. How do you see this project evolving/growing? We hope that our membership always continues to grow. A main goal of the group though is to remain very simple in concept and not demand any more than an hour or two of each member’s time. We think that by keeping it simple we will have great success. Is it capped at 100 women? Absolutely not! The more the merrier. Many 100 Women Who Care groups internationally have reached more than 200 members. Wouldn’t it be amazing for 100 Women Who Care Airdrie to be able to make donations surpassing 10,000K? How do people connect with you? We are easily reached via Facebook, email (100womenwhocareairdrie@gmail.com) or through our website (100womenwhocareairdrie.com)

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Amazing

LOCAL LIFE AMAZING FEATURE

2017

Airdrie

WOMEN W

STORIES BY BRITTON LEDINGHAM AND LORI KUFFNER | PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER

ow – it’s 2017 and airdrielife is celebrating our seventh year of these awards. I can’t believe how this program keeps producing the most exceptional stories about women in our community. When Veronica Funk started her 52-week Heroes series on women, I was hoping we could collaborate with her on our event, and to my delight the next 16 pages feature not only our Amazing Women, but each holding a Veronica Funk painting of a woman in history/current events they admire or with whom they relate. I should commission Veronica to do paintings of our 31 women, as they, in turn, are as inspiring as their more famous counterparts. Britton Ledingham wrote our special focus on Courage recipient Lovepreet Deo and his comments sum up my thoughts exactly: “Lovepreet’s story is one of triumph and will continue to be. She is a bold character who has chosen not to let her disability define her. Seeing how she encourages those around her to strive through hardships is inspiring. She is a joy to talk to and it’s a privilege to call her a friend.” Lori Kuffner, a documentary filmmaker, interviewed and wrote our feature for the 30 nominees. Veronica says of her paintings: “These women are my heroes. Not only was it creatively fulfilling to paint the women that have inspired me most, but also to include their words which have influenced me and, in turn, my daughters. To learn why certain pieces were selected by nominees and to have them featured in airdrielife magazine has definitely brought this project full circle for me.” Special thanks to Sarika Mehta, makeup artist, for glamming everyone up a notch during the photos; The Store Upstairs for a wonderful wardrobe in white; and Kristy Reimer for her camera that makes everyone shine. To all the nominees past, present and future – keep inspiring us. - Sherry Shaw-Froggatt

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Pureform (Tracy Work) Amazing Courage Award

Lovepreet Deo, recipient of the

Pureform (Tracy Work) Amazing Courage Award

Lovepreet Deo doesn’t see herself as courageous.

But with the accomplishments the 35-year-old cyclist with cerebral palsy has tucked under her belt in the last two years, the adjective is earned. “I’m living my life,” said Deo while sitting across a table at Genesis Place after a routine workout. “I’m not going out there and saying ‘I’m doing this because of this award or I want this.’ I’m just doing this for fun.”

Lovepreet chose poet Emily Dickinson

Deo rode in three races in 2016, including her first half-marathon distance on a bike in the 21.1-kilometre Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) race in Calgary, her second 20-km Cerebral Palsy Association Life Without Limits Challenge in Calgary’s Fish Creek Park and Airdrie’s Terry Fox Run. In the process, she raised thousands of dollars for the Cerebral Palsy Association in Alberta in 2015 and 2016. The athlete has garnered plenty of limelight, winning five awards and honours from groups beginning with the 2015 International Day of Persons with Disabilities Calgary Athlete of the Year Award.

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Deo has since been acknowledged by the Alberta Abilities Lodges Society, Arpan Likhari Sabha Calgary (a local Indian blog and newspaper), Punjabi Likhari Sabha Calgary and the Punjabi Writer’s Association, and Kent Hehr, MP for Calgary Centre. She graciously accepts receiving the courage award from airdrielife. “It’s huge for me,” says Deo. “[I] read stories about amazing women, but I never thought one day it would be me.” Deo admits living with her disability is hard. “I have two choices,” says Deo. “I could give up or I could keep moving on. I just keep moving on.” Born in Calgary in 1981, Deo was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at age one. She was told she would never walk, but now does as many as 10,000 steps in a day aided by her walker when she sets her mind to it. Deo completed her secondary education at Forest Lawn High School where she received an award for graduating on schedule. “I had good supportive friends and my family,” says Deo. “They would never let me give up.” Following graduation she earned two certificates from Bow Valley College in business and computers. She moved with her family, which hails from India, to an acreage on the east side of Airdrie seven years ago and began working at SilverCity cinema at CrossIron Mills shortly after. Deo aspires to use her education to work in an office, but in the meantime is making the most of her Friday, Saturday and Sunday work schedule by training at Genesis the other four days of the week. Cycling changed her world in Grade 7. “I don’t know what normal is, but I felt normal,” says Deo of riding for the first time. The athlete, who is now on her third bike (an upright tricycle model), says working out at the gym gives her the same feeling of normality. Friends rib her with jokes and she fires back with her sarcastic wit. Deo’s trainer, Dawn Sorsdahl, said she knew Deo was in a dark place mentally when she first began regular workouts. “I know she’s had it in her for so long to view the world as possible, but I don’t think she could find an outlet for it before,” says Sorsdahl. “Things were always a possibility for her, and I think that’s pretty courageous... I think that’s a big difference, especially when you’re told most of your life things are impossible.” The trainer often leans on Deo as an example to motivate other clients. When someone says they feel they can’t go on, she will point across the gym to Deo working out. “She always reminds me to persevere, keep moving forward,” says Sorsdahl. “She puts the effort in day in and day out. She does it for herself; she doesn’t do it for anyone else.” Deo hasn’t pinpointed her next challenge, but is continuing to train. “I’m ready for it, whatever it may be,” she says. Sorsdahl, who has run alongside Deo in all her races, wants to do something fun to overcome fears with her client and friend, and suggests skydiving may be an option. Whatever the next chapter may be, Deo is sure of what she has learned already. “If you want to do something, then you put your heart into it and your mind into it, you can do anything,” she says. “That’s what I’ve learned this year... Anything is possible. Just don’t give up.”


Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination

Alisa Bisschop “Alisa Bisschop’s energy is not just amazing, says Carly Smith, “it is contagious.” After her second child was born, Bisschop took a Jazzercise class and loved the energy and the changes to her body and mind. “This was something,” she says, “I wanted to provide to others.” Within six months, Bisschop became a certified Jazzercise instructor and in 2011, bought a franchise in Didsbury. In 2014, she expanded to Airdrie. “I find the endorphins put you in a happy place,” says Smith, who has been a regular for nearly two years. “I stay because of her energy.” Bisschop recently sold her Airdrie franchise but continues to instruct there and still owns and operates the Didsbury location. This former accountant also works full time as a business analyst at TELUS and is a certified assessment co-ordinator for Jazzercise trainers around the world. Community-minded Bisschop also raises money for such causes as breast cancer and the Airdrie Food Bank, to name a few. This year Jazzercise offers GirlForce, a free program for girls age 16-21, to help empower them by promoting healthy and happy lifestyles. “When you are toned with more energy, you are more mentally fit and less stressed,” Bisschop says. “It can change the outlook of your life.”

Alisa chose Maya Angelou, poet, author and civil rights activist

Amanda Delahay “Amanda Delahay is the definition of determination and courage,” says Marie Lauer. “She lives this every minute of her life.” On Sept. 20, 2013, Delahay’s second daughter, Carmen, was born with central core disease (CCD), a rare condition with only 80 cases worldwide diagnosed, three in Alberta. CCD is a muscle disorder affecting mobility, weight gain, swallowing, breathing and play. By the time Carmen turned one she had spent more than 100 days in the hospital, had two major surgeries and 100-plus procedures. “Once, says Amanda, “we thought we almost lost her.” Three years later scoliosis of the spine and degeneration began, requiring Carmen to have rod insertions and multiple surgeries for the rest of her life. “I have to stay strong,” says Amanda. “Carmen never gives up; neither can I. She is the funniest and most inspiring person I know.” As CCD is so rare, Carmen’s case is published in doctor’s journals for research and, says Amanda, hopefully to support others. Watching one daughter undergo so much as well as having a seven-year-old at home is not easy for Amanda and her family. Support of family, friends and a Facebook following, Carmen’s Crew, helps Amanda through the day. “We never know what we can do until we have to,” she says.

Amanda chose musician Kate Bush

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Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination

Cassandra Graham At 17, Cassandra Graham suffered a major snowboarding accident which broke her neck and wiped out her entire memory. She no longer understood reality, recognized her parents, nor even the reflection in the mirror. It was like her life was ripped away. Dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PSTD), Graham entered a marriage full of drugs and abuse. She quickly divorced but was alienated from her family and her church. At her lowest point, Graham, who was living in Winnipeg, came to Calgary because she’d read about the city’s leading brain injury recovery centre. Graham focused on getting her life back. She checked into a drug-and-alcohol-treatment facility and sought help for her brain injury. After 18 months, Graham felt her life coming together. “I wasn’t scared anymore,” says Graham, “and there was now light in my dark world.” At 26, Graham went back to work and eventually married a wonderful man. She is the mother of three young children and has a successful career. During those tough times, Graham relied on a lot of selftalk. “I would tell myself, “You can do this. This is not forever. It is just right now!” Looking back she says: “This was part of my life that brought me to where I am today.” Cassandra chose writer and aviation pioneer Anne Morrow Lindbergh

PJ Hombert PJ Hombert’s “no risk, no reward” attitude has touched Renee Doucette, who says: “PJ inspired me to achieve more than I ever thought possible.” Hombert, who grew up in the Yukon, says “I was a teen mother, high school dropout; unemployed and faced with multiple traumatic events.” Determined to take advantage of every educational and employment opportunity, Hombert started working at Corrections at 18 and then with self-governing Aboriginals and their organizations. She also flipped real estate properties. After her youngest daughter was diagnosed with health issues, Hombert moved to Calgary to get better medical care and a better education for her oldest daughter, who is completing her commercial pilot’s license. In 2014, Hombert bought the PropertyGuys.com franchise in Airdrie and has since expanded to PropertyGuys.com Rocky View, Mountain View and Wheatland Counties. In two years, PJ made Airdrie one of the most successful franchises Canada-wide, ranking one of the highest in revenues. Hombert’s experiences have given her a passion to empower others. With her other business, Aurora Aboriginal Consulting, Hombert offers services such as life skills training, program development and governance. She loves telling kids: “Believe in yourselves!” Hombert sees challenges as an opportunity for success and reward. PJ chose Indira Gandhi, prime minister of India

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Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination

Jacqui Jepson In the midst of a difficult economy Jacqui Jepson is running a successful business and at the same time dealing with her two daughters’ serious health issues. “She is just amazing,” says Mandy Lines. “I admire her perseverance and determination.” In 2008 Jepson started The Pink Wand Cleaning Services in Airdrie because she wanted a job that could fit into her children’s schedule. Since then her company has grown to more than 40 employees and is expanding into other territories. Jepson’s business was recognized in 2014 with the Winning Edge Award and in 2016, the Family Friendly Business Award. Keeping a thriving business growing is challenge enough but Jepson is also dealing with much more. Her youngest daughter, after months of testing, was diagnosed with Lyme disease and her oldest daughter has suffered from depression and anxiety as a result of bullying. “It is a trying time,” says Jepson. “I could not be doing it all without the support of my family and my business family.” Even with a packed schedule and her children’s health concerns, Jepson still finds time to volunteer and give back to the community. “What goes around comes around,” says Jepson, “and I could not be more grateful.” Jacqui chose Lucille Ball, actor, comedian and producer

Tracy Laxten “Tracy Laxten has gone through so much,” says friend Lenora Faulkner. “I admire her determination and positive attitude.” For the last two years Laxten has been battling breast cancer; a shocking discovery for this mother of three, but what followed changed her life. After six months of treatment, Laxten realized if she was strong enough to beat cancer, she was strong enough to be on her own. At her lowest point in her life, she ended a difficult marriage. During her marriage, she says, she gave up her dreams and put them in a box. Now, says Laxten, she is opening the box. Today nothing is holding her back. Laxten found a home for herself and her children, is studying to become a dental assistant, and is enjoying life. “I love being in nature and do a lot of hiking,” she says. “I also love horseback riding and painting, to name just a few things.” Laxten says she wants to be someone of which her kids are proud and she also tries to help people when they are down. “I don’t regret the cancer,” Laxten says. “It has been a journey of self-discovery. “Cancer has made me who I am. It was a mountain to climb but worth the climb,” she adds.

Tracy chose sharpshooter and folk hero Annie Oakley

Cast your votes online

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Hassett & Reid Amazing Determination

Kaidy Morgan

Kaidy chose artist and writer Emily Carr

McKee Amazing Leadership

Sara Chamberlain

Sara chose Sacagawea, explorer and interpreter

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As a wife and mother Kaidy Morgan understands busy lifestyles and the need for convenient but healthy meals. For the last two years Morgan worked as a real estate assistant and ran an online meal planning venture for families on the run. Then in December 2016, Morgan opened Social Supper, a commercial kitchen where families can bring home nutritious homemade meals. Morgan was always health conscious but when her mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer she realized just how precious and fleeting life can be. She decided to do something important to help families live better. At Social Supper, Morgan does all the grocery shopping, prep and clean up. Says Melissa Kost: “In a matter of two hours I can go there, [and] assemble 12 meals that are fresh, freezable and ready in 30 minutes. It would take me an entire weekend to do that at home.” “Starting a business is challenging,” says Morgan, but she sings the praises of Airdrie’s SMARTstart Business Program, which helped her prepare for this role. Morgan is also community minded and already giving back to those in need. “We need families to have healthy options,” she says, “and I want to be part of this change.”

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“Sara gets more done in an hour than anyone I know,” says Ayesha Clough. “I am a good tough farm girl,” laughs Chamberlain. “I was raised by parents who built the community hall so I knew if you want something done, you have to do it.” In 2007, this nominee began working with the City of Airdrie as an economic development officer responsible for marketing, communications and business development. In 2012, Chamberlain was elected to the board of Economic Developers Alberta, a professional association whose goal is to advance and provide learning and networking opportunities for their membership across the province. “This year, says Chamberlain, now president of the board, “there will be an additional focus on helping development professionals with tools and resources to get them through the tough economic times.” Chamberlain is also vice-president of Canadian Parents for French Airdrie Chapter and was named volunteer of the year last year by the organization. Closer to home Chamberlain supports parents who are learning firsthand about type 1 diabetes. A few years ago, her youngest son was also diagnosed with the disease. “It was a huge learning curve,” says Chamberlain, who has decided to help others. “Every day,” says Clough, “Sara does something to make the community a better place.”


McKee Amazing Leadership

Becky Diebolt “Becky Diebolt is a great employer,” says Arlene McFarlane. “She is beautiful inside and out.” In 2004, Diebolt and her husband, both in aviation, moved to Airdrie to be close to the airport. They also wanted to own a business but were unsure of what kind. Then they stopped at a Good Earth Coffeehouse in Calgary and loved the coffee, the treats and the atmosphere. While researching the franchise one became available in Airdrie and they went for it. “The stars seemed to align,” says Diebolt. “I believe if something is going to happen, it will.” Diebolt was on extended maternity leave when they opened the franchise. Both her sons were born with hemophilia, a serious condition that granted Diebolt more leave. A first-time business owner, she is a firm believer in leading by example. According to Diebolt, there is nothing that she would not do that she asks her staff to do. She also ensures good customer service. Good Earth Airdrie is also recognized for their great community spirit and generosity. In 2016, Good Earth won Airdrie’s Environmental Stewardship Business Award. Diebolt is back at the airport full time and is thankful for her dedicated staff which keeps the business running smoothly. “I love working here,” says McFarlane. “They treat their staff like family.” Becky chose Beatrix Potter, writer, illustrator and conservationist

Sarah Hissett “Sarah Hissett astounds me,” says Lindsey Coyle, president of the Block Parent Association for which Hissett is vice-president. “If she finds something wrong, she strives to fix it.” Recently Hissett resigned from work to study for her diploma in holistic nutrition. Having hormonal issues cured by health, diet and supplements has led her down her current path. For more than five years, Hissett has supported a charity that helps couples with infertility issues. This is close to her heart as both her daughters were conceived using in vitro fertilization (IVF). Knowing the high cost of this treatment, Hissett has met with government officials to push for funding. “Funding IVF helps the health-care system,” says Hissett. “Couples using IVF often transfer multiple embryos which can lead to multiple births resulting in health issues. If funding were available, couples would be more apt to transfer one embryo at a time resulting in healthier babies.” In 2014, Hissett helped found the Airdrie Bullying Awareness Program, bringing awareness to workplace bullying and elder abuse. She also started a speakers’ series. “I have a voice and I can fight for those things that matter and for those who cannot,” says Hissett. “How do you say no to something that means so much?”

Sarah chose jazz singer Ella Fitzgerald

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McKee Amazing Leadership

Naomi Keane

Naomi chose Grace Kelly, actor and princess of Monaco

“Naomi Keane has so much soul,” says Kierra Gosse, “she makes me love going to work.” In September 2016, Keane opened Oranj Fitness, her first studio, which offers more than 85 classes including spin, dance, yoga and more. “It had been a life dream,” says Keane, who has a dance background. When she was 14 she wrote that she would open a studio with three or more rooms. She still has that paper. Keane worked at various fitness locations before coming to Airdrie. A strong believer in leading a healthy lifestyle, Keane loves helping people transform their lives. While in the planning stage to open a studio in Calgary, Keane stopped or gas in Airdrie and saw an opportunity. In May 2016, before the studio opened, Keane began holding outdoor boot camps, many which raised money for charities including Fort McMurray where Keane was a resident. At Christmas, Keane’s family hosts dinners for the homeless so she started her own tradition by offering a free class every Sunday in December for donations to go to the food bank. Keane believes in living an authentic life with integrity, says Gosse. “I also love leading my team,” says the nominee, “and working as hard as I can.”

Lynn Kehoe “Lynn Kehoe is a fantastic business woman,” says Ruby Jeaurond. “[She] and her staff always make everyone feel special.” Before Kehoe and her husband moved to Airdrie in 2003 to both work at the airport, she and a friend were selling jars of sea salt at the farmer’s market in Saskatoon and making their own lotions and soaps. After their second son was born, Kehoe wanted a homebased business and began expanding her products with different recipes. “It is a lot like baking,” she says. “A lot of trial and error.” The homebased venture evolved and in 2005 Lynn opened Cream Body & Bath, a storefront business. To complement her body products Lynn invested in lingerie and bra fitting. She also sells her products to spas, hotels and stores across Western Canada. Kehoe supports various events and charities in the community and abroad, including a gift certificate to a deserving woman through Airdrie Community Links and donations to Blanco’s Kids, a non-profit in the Dominican Republic. The nominee’s advice for running a successful business is to listen to lots of advice and take what you want; work hard; and hire amazing staff. “They will make the world of difference,” she says.

Lynn chose author and journalist Virginia Woolf

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McKee Amazing Leadership

Lisa Mundell-Lawrence

“Every day I work to the best of my ability,” says Lisa Mundell-Lawrence, president of sales and marketing for PMA Brethour Realty Group in Western Canada. Mundell-Lawrence is also a mother of a blended family of six, a public speaker, a two-time cancer survivor and, together with her husband, owner of multiple businesses. Out of school Mundell-Lawrence mastered a variety of skills from managing large sums of money, to sales, to running her own modelling agency, to being a foster parent. Mundell-Lawrence also professed to being a workaholic. Then everything changed. She was diagnosed with cancer the same day she learned she was pregnant again. Making her baby a priority, Mundell-Lawrence refused cancer treatments until her son was born. “Before the cancer it was all about money,” says the nominee. “Afterwards it was about balance.” In 2002, Mundell-Lawrence started working with PMA, where she successfully manages worldwide projects and wins top awards. Her life experiences make her a positive mentor for the Canadian Business Chicks and a key speaker at Transformation Weekends, helping people reset their goals. Her best business advice? “Keep balanced, set goals, manage your time and remember what you focus on grows.” Although Mundell-Lawrence has accomplished many goals, she says: “I am most proud of my children, who are strong [and] independent.”

Lisa chose Coco Chanel, fashion designer and businesswoman

Stephanie Todd Through her online presence Confessions of a Meal Plan Addict, Stephanie Todd has been enabling women around the world to lose weight and live healthier lives. Todd is a wife and mother and admits to being a foodie. After gaining weight, Todd tried 15 weight-loss programs before successfully working with a dietician. She encourages others not to give up, either. “When I started losing weight people kept asking me what was I eating,” says Todd, so she started posting meal plans along with healthy, tasty recipes, many which she created. “Stephanie is so creative with food,” says Tammy Block. “Try her sweet-potato nachos.” Recently Todd incorporated her passion into a business and has developed a cutting board which she is selling online. She is also collaborating with other health professionals to provide health retreats. Todd works full time at Worktopia, an organization helping people with autism seek employment. With a bachelor of science degree and a masters in biomechanical -technology, everything she does is health related. “Losing weight has helped [me] regain my energy and confidence,” says the nominee. “But it has been building a community that has really provided a sense of satisfaction.” “I love my lifestyle,” adds Todd. “This is how I live my life.” Stephanie chose actor and philanthropist Meryl Streep

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AWBA Amazing Promise

Elena Mitevska

Elena chose Helen Keller, author and political activist

Elena Mitevska strives to change things for the better,” says Lindsay Rous, teacher at W.H. Croxford High School, where this nominee attends Grade 12. At school Mitevska excels in the sciences with plans to become a doctor. To get a feel for the atmosphere, she volunteers at Airdrie Urgent Care. She strives to become more aware of others’ situations so she can help. When Mitevska started volunteering at Airdrie Community Links she realized that not everyone is born with the same opportunities. This has inspired her to help others so they too can reach their maximum potential. Mitevska has been recognized for her contributions. In 2014, she won the Airdrie Volunteer Awards’ Leader of Tomorrow Award for her leadership within the community. In 2015, she won President of the Year when her Junior Achievement of Canada team finished in the top three in southern Alberta. (The organization helps teach young people about business and free enterprise.) Mitevska and her teammates made soap and learned to market their product. “It was great to be able to lead a team and see what we could accomplish,” she says. Besides her hectic schedule of school and volunteering, Mitevska also teaches piano. To accomplish all she does, this nominee says she likes to work diligently and make the most of her time.

Aleeyah Qureshi Aleeyah Qureshi has demonstrated that through hard work, dreams can come true. Qureshi is a Grade 11 student at W.H. Croxford High School. As a little girl, Qureshi dreamed of becoming a dancer. At age four, she started gymnastics. By eight, she was in competitive dance. Dedicated to her passion, Qureshi has trained in many disciplines including jazz, hip hop and acrobatics, and for one year, trained with a former Cirque du Soleil aerialist. After suffering a hip injury, Qureshi developed a passion for teaching. Qureshi’s mother calls her the “whirlwind” because she maintains good grades, works part time at a hair studio, teaches dance at Star Bound Dance Company in Airdrie, dances with ilFX in Calgary, and proudly volunteers as a certified dance assistant for her teacher Miss Mandy, whose Acrobatic Arts program is recognized worldwide. After high school Qureshi plans to travel and immerse herself in other dance cultures. She also wants to study business so she can one day open her own dance studio. She advises students who dream of becoming professional to “work hard, stay focused and be dedicated.” Says Jade Chausse, teacher at W.H. Croxford High School: “I am constantly inspired and impressed by her leadership.”

Aleeyah chose Audrey Hepburn, actor, dancer and humanitarian

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AWBA Amazing Promise

Sarah Rinke Sarah Rinke, a former Grade 10 student at George McDougall High School, now attending a charter school in Calgary, lives to be productive and make every day count. Besides maintaining her academics, Rinke volunteers rigorously in her school and community and is a recipient of the Governor General’s Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers. At school she takes part in the Mustang breakfast program and Ride of the Mustang fundraiser for which she seeks donations and sponsorships. Rinke is also in the school’s leadership program and sits on the advisory council giving a voice to the students. Other volunteer activities include Stephen’s Backpacks Society, the food bank, and the Airdrie Board of Youth Affairs, where she works alongside city council to advocate for youth. Rinke also volunteers weekly at Bethany Airdrie as she realizes many of the centre’s residents may not have family close by. “I learn a lot from them,” says Rinke, “like patience, leadership and communication skills.” “It’s a win-win situation,” she adds. Rinke also works part time at a drycleaner. Her goal is to become a doctor one day. Says Liz Johnson, librarian at George McDougall: “I am impressed that she gives so much of her own time.” Sarah chose aviation pioneer and author Amelia Earhart

Jenn Williams “It is in her nature to be a leader,” says Erin Duggan, guidance counsellor at George McDougall High School, “and to give back to her school and her community.” Jenn Williams, a Grade 12 student at George McDougall High School, has taken a leadership role for the last three years. She participates in such causes as the Terry Fox Run, breast cancer awareness and Ride of the Mustang. This year, Williams was chairman for this program, raising sponsorship and donations. “It was great,” says Williams. “I loved watching the school and the community come together.” In addition to these activities, Williams also excels academically, participates in band and holds a part-time job. To manage her school work, she arrives early to school and stays in at the lunch hour, if necessary. After graduation, Williams plans to become a teacher. She says she was inspired by an elementary school teacher and wants to do the same for others. Eventually, she would like to become a principal. “A principal sets the mood for the school,” says Williams. “I would love to be in a position to hire good staff and build an amazing environment. “I see the changes in the world,” she says, “and I would love to be part of [them].”

Jenn chose Emmeline Pankhurst, political activist and leader of the British suffragette movement

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Pharmasave Amazing Heart

Kerry Bostick

Kerry chose Nellie Bly, journalist, author and charity worker

“Kerry Bostick is an amazing asset to the community,” says Theresa Shenkariuk. This nominee grew up in small-town Alberta where she learned the value of giving back. When Bostick enrolled at SAIT, she began volunteering weekly at the Foothills Hospital, visiting a patient who was bedridden. “It was a wake-up call,” she says, “to know how lucky we are.” Today Bostick is a Realtor and a Chamber of Commerce board member promoting local business. She can also be found volunteering for the Rotary Club of Airdrie, or at home preparing lasagna to bring to a new mom. Bostick’s community spirit is inspiring her two daughter. The girls – Ashyln, 8, and Isla, 5 – have already donated their hair to cancer. When Ashlyn turned eight, she opted for donations for the Alberta Children’s Hospital in lieu of gifts and raised $700. The family went together to give the donation and have a tour. Kerry also brings her girls when she volunteers at the food bank or participates in toy drives. “I want them to understand not everyone is as fortunate,” she says. “And that it doesn’t take much to do a small act of kindness. It might mean the world to someone.”

Kim Crisanti As a child, Kim Crisanti’s parents often came home to find the family dog wrapped in bandages, knowing Crisanti was playing doctor again Today, Crisanti is a small animal veterinarian and together with her husband Dave Seefeldt, also a veterinarian, owns and operates the Airdrie Animal Health Centre. Says Seefeldt: “Kim has the largest clientele, an amazing memory recalling every client by name as well as their pet owners. “Even on vacations,” he says, “Kim will take calls from colleagues who have taken over her clientele while she is away.” Although Crisanti adores all pets and will even get down on all four to greet each one, she thrives on helping her older patients. “They often have complicated health issues like heart disease, diabetes, arthritis or any combination, and because they cannot communicate, it is a puzzle figuring out the best strategy,” she says. “But I love puzzles; even at home l like putting them together.” . Besides her practice, Crisanti has helped develop the curriculum for the University of Calgary Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Crisanti and Seefeldt have two rescue dogs. “All pets need good homes and show such gratitude,” she says. “They give back way more than they ever receive.”

Kim chose nun and missionary Mother Teresa

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Pharmasave Amazing Heart

Melanie Lacroix “Melanie Lacroix has a compassion for animals that is second to none,” says her partner Cheryl Lindberg. Since 2014, Lacroix and Lindberg have owned and operated The Cat Next Door Inc., a certified and professional pet-sitting company specializing in cats, dogs, fish, reptiles and rabbits. They are certified feline specialists and also offer a pet first aid certificate course that is internationally recognized. The idea to open a pet service started when the pair wanted a holiday. Having multiple pets, it was difficult to find a reliable pet sitter. On that holiday, Lacroix did something bold. She resigned from the corporate world and never looked back. “Melanie goes above and beyond.” says Lindberg. “She thinks nothing of spending an entire week staying up all night to rescue a feral cat and her kittens; or to bring an injured goose roaming town to the bird sanctuary; or capture a dog running loose.” “I love what I do,” says Lacroix. “Sometimes it is hard to believe this is my job.” As an entrepreneur, she loves being able to attend their sons’ school activities. Laughing, she says “I am the best boss I ever had.” In 2016, the Cat Next Door Inc. was a finalist for Airdrie’s Emerging Business Award. “I love what I do,” says Lacroix. “Sometimes it is hard to believe this is my job.”

Melanie chose Mata Hari, dancer and spy

Nancy McPhee For more than 10 years, Nancy McPhee has helped her son Stephen change the world. Stephen was five when he realized there were homeless children. He inspired his family to buy and fill 15 Christmas backpacks to bring to a shelter. The next year, he wanted to do even more. He said to Nancy: “Mommy, dream out loud!” – an unusual request from a boy diagnosed with autism. Ten years later, Stephen’s Backpacks Society, a registered national charity, delivers thousands of backpacks each year to various shelters; buys running shoes for children in crisis; helps families in need furnish apartments; and started a Global Citizenship Project to help other children realize their dreams. “Although Stephen is the face of the foundation,” says Tara Murphy, “Nancy is the driving force behind it and a trailblazer for parents.” “Mom is usually up at five,” says daughter Breanne, “to tackle her mile-long list”. Nancy – executive director and “proud mom” – also fostered children for 15 years and wrote two books whose net proceeds foster the charity’s cause. “We could not do this without the volunteers, corporate sponsors or the media,” says Nancy. “It is the heartbeat of all involved.” “And we won’t stop,” she says, “until every child has the opportunity to “dream out loud.” Nancy chose the Virgin Mary

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Pharmasave Amazing Heart

Stephanie Rowat A mother’s tragedy became a young daughter’s strength. Stephanie Rowat was three when her mother Judy Wilson nearly died in a tragic car accident. Fearing the worst, the family was called in to say goodbye. “The only memory I have of that time is my mother lying in that hospital bed,” says Rowat. “Every time I think of it, I get such a sinking feeling.” Within a week Wilson came home not because she was well enough but because she had three children to care for and her husband worked long hours. “Stephanie just took over some of the duties”, says Wilson. “She would make me tea, try to make dinner, set the table, cuddle with me and rub my back. “She would even tell her older brothers it was time for school or their music lesson,” adds Wilson. Although Rowat can’t remember much, she does remember not wanting to leave her mother’s side to go to school or sleepovers. She was almost 12 before she started to feel it was OK to leave her mom. “I have not forgotten all she did for me,” says Wilson. “Stephanie is 25 now and she still has that amazing and loving heart.”

Stephanie chose Marie Curie, physicist and Nobel Prize winner

Reetika Sarpal Often the unsung hero, Reetika Sarpal loves being a wife, mother and homemaker and her husband Jasrobin thinks he is the luckiest man in the world. “My wife is a good worker, a good wife and good mother,” he says. “Her work ethic makes it easier for me to do what I do.” Jasrobin works two jobs. His first job starts at 6:30 a.m., with a second job in the evening. Every morning Reetika gets up early to prepare a breakfast and pack a lunch for her husband. For dinner she makes a special meal of Indian food which he looks forward to. The couple moved to Airdrie three years ago from Calgary to enjoy small-town living and to raise their family. The couple has a four-year-old son and a baby daughter. Although Reetika works for an export and import company, she is on maternity leave. “I love being at home,” says Reetika, “and I love to look after my house and spend time with my children.... I enjoy cooking for my husband. He always compliments me,” she says, “and that encourages me.” Says Reetika, “I have a lovely family and I feel very lucky.”

Reetika chose Harriet Tubman, abolitionist, humanitarian and spy

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Pharmasave Amazing Heart

Erin Quiring “Erin Quiring enriches everything she believes in,” says Sara Chamberlain, fellow board member of the Canadian Parents for French Airdrie Chapter. A mother of two sons, Quiring is a strong believer in French immersion, Scouts Canada and giving back to her church. Quiring took core French in high school but after she and her husband lived in Winnipeg (which has a strong French community) they realized the benefit of bilingualism. She knew a second language would benefit their sons and provide more career choices down the road. When the family moved to Airdrie, Quiring became a founding member of the Airdrie chapter of Canadian Parents for French and has served as president for the past three years. Recently, she was elected to the Canadian Parents for French Alberta Board of Directors. None of this stops Quiring from working full time as an educational assistant, volunteering at her church nursery or being a weekly Cub leader for Scouts Canada. As camping is a family affair, this is an activity the family enjoys together while helping other young scouts enjoy the outdoors. There are weeks Quiring puts in as many hours volunteering as she does working. “When it comes to having an amazing heart,” says Chamberlain, “I think of Erin.”

Erin chose Dian Fossey, primatologist and anthropologist

Nadine Woitt You never know how a generous act can impact another. In 2009, after being in the hair industry for several years, Nadine Woitt purchased Mezzanine Hair Studio in Airdrie. Since owning Mezzanine, Woitt along with her staff and clients have adopted various families at Christmas and always ensure it is a holiday to remember. For Mother’s Day, Woitt and staff select six mothers (nominated by their daughters) who have touched their hearts and treat them to a free day of pampering. Woitt started this tradition in honour of her own mother, who died six years ago. The lucky recipients get their hair and makeup done and leave with before-and-after photos. Although Woitt has received lots of thanks for her generosity, she especially touched the heart of one young client. The client called to cancel her appointment, telling the receptionist she needed the money to help a friend who had just suffered a terrible loss. Within minutes Woitt called the client to tell her the appointment was on the house so the money could still help her friend. Her client could not believe that someone she barely knew could be so generous. “Nadine,” says her nominator, who prefers to remain anonymous, “is just one of those amazing women.” life

Nadine chose civil rights activist Rosa Parks

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Thank you for once again choosing McKee Homes as Airdrie’s Best Homebuilder

The exciting new Master Planned community of Vista Crossing is where our Sperrin II calls home. A short trip up the QEII highway, this right-sized (1396 sq ft) bungalow features two bedrooms, two baths and a double attached garage, its beauty eclipsed only by its location on the edge of Crossfield, which gives way to a stunning view of the Rocky Mountains to the West.

DESIGN INSPIRATION

CARLINGFORD RT

Empty-nesters or those looking to rightsize their lives, rejoice! Striking the balance between spacious and affordable, the design of this house was based around a real life couple who, after retirement, filled their lives with adventure and travel. Still wanting a comfortable, well appointed home to come back to in between destinations, they opted for functional, well apportioned spaces that promised everything you need and nothing you don’t. The end result is a home that just feels right, from the optimized efficiency of its office/guest bedroom to the combining of the laundry room and mud room (a simple notion but oh, so effective).

A waterway forming part of Ireland’s North/South border, Carlingford Lough offers some of the most beautiful scenery the country has to offer. From this, we named our Bayside show home the Carlingford RT and seek to equal this ideal. Spacious at 2555 sq ft, and very nicely appointed with plenty of functional living area and a tandem garage, we like to think of the Carlingford RT as a timeless beauty. Centrally located in Airdrie, you can see it for yourself at 1347 Bayside Drive.

DESIGN INSPIRATION One of Grace’s style faves (her personal homeof-choice is a Carlingford), the Carlingford RT was designed with young, hip, upwardly mobile couples in mind. Couples who love the idea of a downtown loft, but want to raise their children in a more family oriented suburban setting. Taking styling and material cues from innercity dwellings—think brick, stone, steel—Grace and her team tapped into the mindset of people who travel, enjoy live music and seek out new experiences in life, and personified it in a home. With plenty of storage for all life’s pursuits, and individualized spaces for family members (check out the space-themed kids room!), the Carlingford RT is modern but comfortable and sure to win any family’s hearts and minds.

Pharmasave Amazing Heart

SPERRIN II Wendy Contant Wendy Contant has been referred to as “the Spirit of Airdrie.” She moved to Airdrie 30 years ago and has made volunteering part of her life. “If there is something happening in Airdrie like the Summer Games or big gala events, most likely Wendy will be there with a welcoming smile,” says Deb Salmon. Sarika Mehta cannot say enough about this nominee either. When Mehta moved to Airdrie and was starting a business, Contant connected her to the community. “Wendy went above and beyond,” says Mehta. “Without her, my business may not have survived.” . “I volunteer because I love the social aspect and I learn so much from each event,” says Contant, who after helping out with triathlons became a runner herself. Contant supports other charities, too, but it is Bethany Airdrie which holds her heart. She got to know the staff and residents at Bethany when her mother was a resident. After her mother’s death, Contant continued to visit and became a weekly volunteer, helping with a variety of events. She says she loves the hugs and warmth both the staff and residents provide. “Getting that welcome and those hugs is way more than I give,” says Contant. “It really fills those empty places in my heart.”

Wendy chose singer-songwriter Stevie Nicks

Leanne Grenier

ANTRIM Live life a cut above in Hillcrest, Airdrie’s elevated community. It’s where you’ll find the Antrim, a two story, 2025 sq ft home that boasts three bedrooms, two and a half baths and a double attached garage, all in close proximity to W.H. Croxford High School, Coopers Crossing K-3 school, and the soon to be completed Windsong Heights K-7 school (due to open Fall 2017).

DESIGN INSPIRATION How does one sum up the Antrim? In short, personalized and eclectic. With a den at the back of the house and plenty of usable living area spread over two floors, Grace’s vision was for every member of the family to feel they had a dedicated space. To that end, a variety of themes, colours, materials and artwork— reflecting the differing ages and interests of the people who would potentially live there— introduced personalization to the home. Add to that a seemingly small but undeniably crucial detail: children’s bedrooms are set well apart from the master bedroom so that every member of the family has a space that they can truly call their own.

“For the past 10 years, Leanne Grenier has made many of our dreams possible,” says Emily Marston, reigning queen of the Airdrie Pro Rodeo. Grenier grew up in 4-H and loved the rodeo way of life. After trying out for the title, she begin to chaperone and then became the Airdrie Pro Rodeo Royalty director. “I fell in love with the job,” she says. “I realized if I had won it would have taken me on a different path and I am quite happy with what I am doing.” Since becoming director, Grenier has clocked close to 5,000 volunteer hours supporting the girls during the month-long pageant and then throughout their reign. She has also increased their events from 50 to about 100. “People we talk to,” says Marston, “say this pageant is one of the best.” Besides her love for promoting Airdrie, Grenier says she enjoys watching the girls embrace new opportunities and grow in confidence and independence. “I have different girls each year so I am constantly learning too,” she adds. In addition to her duties with the Airdrie Pro Rodeo, Grenier works full time with Venture Communications in Calgary. Her support for the girls continues well after their reign. “She is such a good friend,” says Marston, “and such a cool lady.”

Leanne chose actor and spirited personality Katharine Hepburn

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Pharmasave Amazing Heart

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE

Nicole Haacke

Nicole chose politician, social activist and author Nellie McClung

“I have always looked up to my mom,” says Caitlin, “and aspired to be her.” Although Caitlin has watched her mom Nicole Haacke give generously to many charities and community events, her favourite is her mother’s “Christmas in July.” Nicole invited family and friends to her birthday and gave them a gift. She even flew in Caitlin’s friends from Toronto who had never seen the Rockies. Besides generosity, Nicole and her husband want their five girls to experience other cultures firsthand. To do this they travel extensively. Nicole is also a Homestay co-ordinator helping foreign students experience Canada. The family also boards many foreign students. “It really opens your world,” says Caitlin, “and plays a big part in our lives.” When the earthquake hit Haiti, Nicole’s daughters collected tents to send overseas. Nicole has also engrained in her girls: “If someone is mean, kill them with kindness.” So when Caitlin was bullied at school, instead of retaliation, she placed positive notes on all the school lockers. The story hit the news and for two years Nicole travelled with Caitlin as she spoke out about her experience. Besides working full time, Nicole and her husband own Niikos Furniture. “My mother has been my rock,” says Caitlin. “She truly is an amazing woman.”

Elaine McKee-Doel President

Founder, Martin McKee

BEHIND THE DESIGN

Erica Hatch Erica Hatch loves helping others. For 14 years she worked as a registered nurse. Then, a few years ago, she decided on a new path. This nominee was always interested in alternative medicine and decided on osteopathy, a unique holistic approach to health care. This new adventure would be a five-year commitment that would take her to Vancouver for six to seven days every month for classroom instruction. Not easy for a mother of two active daughters. Hatch’s husband Derek supported her and ensured their girls would keep to their routine. Says Derek: “My wife is a very driven but loving person.” With one year left in her course, Erica can see the light at the end of the tunnel. When not studying, she still nurses a couple of days a week but has also started a practice in her own home. “I love what I do and I love my clients” says Erica, “and working from home allows me to spend more time with my daughters.” “It is a lot of work,” she adds. “There were some tears, sometimes popcorn for dinner, but it is rewarding to fulfill your dream. “You do not know what you are capable of until you do it,” Erica says.

Thirty years. It seems like both a moment and an age, all at once. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you—to the land developers who believe in us to deliver community visions; to the trade and supplier partners who ensure our quality standards are met and exceeded; to our staff who are dedicated to our mission, customers and company; to all the other professionals and inspectors who help keep our company moving; and finally, thank you to our valued homeowners who have put their trust in us through the years to create the homes they have dreamed of. It is our sincere privilege to work with each and every one of you, doing exactly what we love—building homes for families.

One of the hallmarks of a McKee Home is its distinctive style and design. Our thirty-plus years in business has taught us that every family is unique, and because of this, we feel that so too should be the home they live in. With this in mind we’ve resolved to consult with our customers, allowing them Grace McKee Executive VP to modify an existing floor plan so it better suits their needs and tastes, or even completely customize a design from start to finish. Whatever the level of involvement, customer satisfaction is always our ultimate goal. This thought has been encapsulated in both our mission: crafting exceptional homes for our valued customers, and our vision: to be the most highly sought-after homebuilder in our chosen markets.

homes both practical and functional. And most importantly, ones that truly inspire.

And you can see this in our show homes. Rather than off-therack plans and designs, our executive vice president and head designer Grace McKee uses visualization—imagining, based on experience, the end user and what their requirements/ desires will be—to put forward a range of fully realized show

Presently building in four Airdrie communities—Cooper’s Crossing, Bayside, Ravenswood and Hillcrest—as well as Vista Crossing in Crossfield, this abundance of homes promises something for each individual’s tastes and every different family.

Blending technology and creativity, Grace and her team draw from a wide variety of media for stimulus—media as varied as trade publications, reference websites, old photos, found objects…anything that serves to evoke a sense of who the family is that will ultimately live in the home. A reservoir of information is created, and from this is distilled a cohesive picture of what the layout, design and purpose of each room will be, and how these different rooms will all tie together. The end result is a living, breathing home that should delight visitors, giving them a chance to move through the space and imagine a home their families will enjoy for many years to come. Feedback received from our current show homes indicates that, so far, Grace and her team have been right on the money!

THREE DECADES. COUNTLESS MEMORIES. ONE FOCUS. Using passion, craftsmanship and attention to detail as his blueprint, Martin McKee built his very first house back in 1987. We’ve used these principles to build quality homes and become an integral part of the Airdrie community ever since. Thank you Airdrie for 30 great years!

Erica chose Kenojuak Ashevak, pioneer of modern Inuit art

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airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017

Cast your votes online

403-948-6595  mckeehomes.com

BAYSIDE ESTATES ALEXANDRA LARSEN 403-948-7881 | COOPER’S CROSSING NANCY HARRIS 403-948-4635 HILLCREST JENNIFER LASAGA 403-966-8451 | RAVENSWOOD DOUG KIRK 403-980-1092 | CROSSFIELD CHUCK LECLERC 403-542-4352


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WORK LIFE RURAL ROOTS

Pampered piggies Farmer leaves corporate life in Calgary to raise happy pigs near Airdrie

W

STORY BY AYESHA CLOUGH | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI

hen farmer Chris Fasoli pushes open the wooden gates and enters a giant pig pen, his chubby animals come running. Their gentle grunts grow louder as more and more hurtle over, giant pink ears flapping

with each trot. “Good morning, guys,” Fasoli says, surrounded by a pack of pudgy pink-and-brown bodies, chomping on his boots and nudging his pant legs. Fasoli, who runs Bear and the Flower Farm in Irricana, pats them on their backs and scratches their fat necks. The one he’s nicknamed “Donkey” follows him around and gets too “bunty,” so the 36-year-old yells “git” and flaps his arms to shoo her along. Donkey arrived at the farm at weaner size, or 50 pounds. When her time is up, she’ll weigh a whopping 250 pounds – having spent a blissful five months grazing on the farm’s natural grasses and chowing down on specially-blended plant-based pellets devised by a swine nutritionist.

With the abundant food, acres of rolling pasture – even their own private beaches along the banks of the winding Rosebud River – the animals are living the life of Riley. “They live a way better life here than they [would] in confinement,” says Fasoli. “We guesstimate our pigs, in one to two days, walk more than a pig in confinement walks its entire life.” When Bear and the Flower started in the fall of 2015, Fasoli and his wife Jessica had a modest goal of selling 20 animals a month. Now, the farm is supplying 30 a week with plans to expand further, he says. Customers include high-end restaurants like Parc and Cibo in Calgary, and Hayloft in Airdrie, but anyone can shop their online store for sausages, ribs, tenderloin and more. “I’ll go pork chop to pork chop with anybody,” Fasoli says confidently. “Put your pork chop next to mine, and put it to the customer. I’m going to win,” he says with a laugh. SPRING 2017 | airdrielife.com

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WORK LIFE RURAL ROOTS

Working in the fresh air, under the big blue Alberta skies, surrounded by hayfields, has been good for Fasoli’s health. He’s dropped 60 pounds since starting his pig farm – although some of that could also be the stress of starting a business. When he and Jessica spend sleepless nights wondering about how they’ll make payroll, or pay their suppliers, or if their animals are okay, they go into the kitchen for an early morning “tea and talk.” “We’ve had lots of corporate meetings at 3 a.m.,” he says jokingly. Prior to the farm, Fasoli had a management job in Calgary, helping to run a family-owned manufacturing business. But after a somewhat acrimonious “divorce from his brothers,” he’s happy to ditch the suit-and-tie, long commute and rigid routine dictated by the ever-present factory bell. Now, you’ll find him working in his socks, in a little office trailer

plonked on the acreage just down the road from his home in Irricana. Or he’s out in the fields caring for his animals. The former exec has mud on his shoes, and less money in his wallet, but his heart is full. “I make one-third the money that I made working there, but I’m 10 billion times happier,” Fasoli says. Down at the local pub in Beiseker, his buddies have dubbed him “Hippy Fasoli.” “They give me a ribbing,” he says, “but I give it right back.” Already, one of his chicken farmer school buddies has taken out the doors on his chicken barn, allowing his birds to roam free – like Fasoli’s pigs. It may not be long before Fasoli and his pig operation help to “hippify” this part of the country. life

“We guesstimate our pigs, in one to two days, walk more than a pig in confinement walks its entire life” 122

airdrielife.com | SPRING 2017


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Willow Pond, Cooper ’s Crossing

Profile for airdrielife magazine

airdrielife spring 2017  

Exploring the good life in Airdrie, Alberta with our special AMAZING Airdrie Women feature!

airdrielife spring 2017  

Exploring the good life in Airdrie, Alberta with our special AMAZING Airdrie Women feature!