who give a
BENCH The epic story of Olly and Jacob
Coach, dad, DJ & rap artist
WILLY SnYpeS The BUZZ at the apiary Heirloom tomatoes in the backyard
Stylinâ€™ MANover From homework to WOODWORKS airdrielife.com
, y a l p o t A place . w o r g o t m o o r h wit
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ing ly serv Proud s familie ie r d ir A
Sergei Belski, Anthony Burbidge, Ayesha Clough, Charlene Codio, Rafael Codio, Lia Golemba, Jill Iverson, Britton Ledingham, Tara Levick, Cat Nantel, Trenton Pittner, Kim Purvis, Kristy Reimer, Anthony Sanni, Dawn Smith, Mario Toneguzzi, Wyatt Tremblay, Meghan West, Kathryn Zondag
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WHERE TO FIND US airdrielife is delivered to all homes in Airdrie and surrounding areas. If you do not receive an issue please contact email@example.com airdrielife is available at more than 100 locations around the city. You can also find airdrielife in every Airdrie showhome, at 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 15, NUMBER 2 | ISSN 1916-355X
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S U M M E R 2018
Now offering Aesthetic Botox
contributors Charlene and Rafael Codio, photographers We love meeting with and photographing community people and business owners. Airdrie is a very unique, small town and a great place to call home. We loved getting to know Liam and Graham; such talented, responsible young men. Airdrie is truly a city full of young creative artists. Britton Ledingham, writer and photographer In a year and a half, Steve Campbell and Ryan Russell have cemented themselves in pop culture as Olly Postanin and Jacob Ardown, the comical hockey duo that live on social media under the banner of On the Bench (OTB). I’m amazed how they rose to the top in the purest way possible. They consistently posted funny, original content, mashed up some skates and the world fell in love. Steve and Ryan say their banter is simply hockey slang, but it’s beyond that. Their unrehearsed, off-the-cuff creativity brings a smile to my face and millions of others. I hope you enjoy getting to learn a bit more about the local boys behind OTB. I know I sure did. Kristy Reimer, photographer The SMARTstart photos involved some preplanning this year because they are a combo of photography and artwork. We needed to create poses in the photos that would represent the businesses but also work for the artist too. Since the props were being drawn in later, the photo shoot was like playing charades with fake props and imaginary scenarios! There were quite a few laughs at the ridiculousness of holding up “nothing.” I really enjoyed directing the entrepreneurs and mentors to create these images and I can’t wait to see the photos and artwork by Lia Golemba together in print.
Anthony Sanni, image consultant Image consulting for the style MANover was a fun and rewarding experience. Clothes have a way of influencing how others see us and, more interestingly, how we see ourselves. The best part of helping men master their image and control the message they are sending through that image is seeing the transformation that happens in a person with something as simple as a wardrobe upgrade. Our winner for this issue is like a brand-new man and I am happy to have been part of his style transformation.
Dawn Smith, writer Growing up, I spent many hours each summer working in the vegetable garden. Weeding, hoeing, staking and eventually harvesting were important tasks because our family counted on the fruits of our labours to get us through the winter. I enjoyed the vegetable garden, but my passion was in spending time with my grandmother in her flower garden. It was then that I developed my lifelong passion for gardening and for growing in my knowledge of techniques. This issue, Rosa West, president of the Airdrie Horticultural Society, shared without hesitation her knowledge on maintaining your summer garden. What a pleasure it was for me to sit with her and share about our gardens and lives. Be sure to check out the story; I know you will learn something too. Mario Toneguzzi, writer You have to love people who follow their dreams. Successful entrepreneurs are like that. And Ryan Boldt is a sterling example. Admittedly it was scary leaving a full-time job with regular hours and regular pay. But his passion for dogs won out and now he has a thriving business called Awesome Paws – and he couldn’t be happier living the dream.
S U M M E R 2018
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Quick possession homes that fit your lifestyle are always available in Airdrie. Find out why King’s Heights is where you can call home! • • •
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S U M M E R 2018
publisher’s note W
ell our winter of discontent spread its tentacles way too far into the spring season so I really hope when you pick up this SUMMER issue you are basking in sunshine and double-digit positive temperatures! We are continuing our summer theme of focusing on men we admire, who inspire and motivate. From the cool factor of our cover story Willy SnYpeS to the soaring charity of the Airdrie Flying Club, and the talent and determination of two young artisans, we have an issue of feel-good stories to share around the patio. In particular we are delighted to share the story of Steve Campbell and Ryan Russell, a.k.a. Olly Postanin and Jacob Ardown, the viral sensation of On the Bench, who make us laugh and take life a little less seriously. And on the opposite spectrum are 100 Men who take giving back seriously (albeit while still having fun). Kudos to them for taking the lead and demonstrating the power of community. The power of community has been felt very strongly in Airdrie since the Humboldt, SK, tragedy in April. We are learning so much about bravery, compassion, strength, kindness and perseverance. While this issue is dedicated to men who inspire, it would have been an obvious lead story to focus on Ryan Straschnitzki. But with our early deadlines we opted to wait. We want more time to take Ryan’s story beyond the crash that changed his life and lives of so many others not only in Airdrie but around the world. Britton Ledingham is following Ryan’s recovery, the gallant community efforts and the smallest gestures, and we look forward to sharing a very special in-depth feature in our winter issue aptly themed “Heroes.” Although this issue is dedicated to the men in our world, we do share our celebrations from the eighth annual Amazing Airdrie Women luncheon; as always, it was a very inspiring day. I lost another great man in my life at the beginning of 2018, my father-in-law Jim, so this issue is dedicated to the great men in all our lives. I leave you with this Walt Whitman quote to reflect on over the summer months: “Produce great men, the rest follows.”
Sherry Shaw-Froggatt Editor and Publisher
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16 greatlife 16 18 22 24 26 30 34 36 40
Woodworkers Rap Artist Events MANover Amazing Event Tomato Tom-ah-to In the Kitchen TASTEairdrie Parentlife
48 Mattamy at Home 50 Beautiful Bungalows 54 Showhomes 56 Decorlife 58 Gardenlife 60 Real Estate
On the Cover Multi-talented Willy SnYpeS talks about his musical journey. PHOTO BY KRISTY REIMER
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62 Businesslife 63 Smart Start 66 Motivated Men
citylife 72 74 77 80 85
100 Men Sea Cadets Airdrie Flying Club On the Bench What the Buzz
BORN AIRDRIE. RAISED AIRDRIE. SELLS AIRDRIE.
“What you do in your home is your business. Finding you one is mine!”
airdriehouses.com |403.862.0096 14
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W H AT T O S E E , D O , E AT, L I ST E N T O A N D M O R E
16 Woodworkers • 24 MANover • 30 Tasty Tomatoes
G R E AT L I F E | A R T I ST P R O F I L E
From homework to woodwork STORY BY WYATT TREMBLAY | PHOTOS BY CHARLENE AND RAFAEL CODIO
raham Flaig and Liam Barrell are following in the footsteps of a long and rich tradition of Alberta artisans. They own Airdrie Woodworks Co., a successful home decor and kitchen products business founded in 2016: its motto is to “provide you with a selection of everything you need to make your home, a home.” “We wanted to make products that people could use but were also not like everything else out there,” says Flaig. “What we do is different,” agrees Barrell. “It’s more what we do with the wood.” These artisanal entrepreneurs, both 16, just finished Grade 11 at St. Martin de Porres. They met in Grade 8, but didn’t turn their passion for woodworking into a business until Grade 10. “The idea came up in wood shop,” Barrell explains. “We were just working on our projects together,” Flaig elaborates, “just having fun and making some quality stuff.” “It was almost a joke at first, ‘Oh, we could sell this!’” Barrell remembers, “But we kinda liked how that sounded, and we just went with it, and here we are today.” Now, they run two woodworking shops out of both of their parents’ garages, designing and crafting furniture and a variety of home products, including cutting boards and candleholders. Their first experience selling their creations was at a church Christmas bazaar. “A lot of people really liked what we were doing,” Flaig recalls. “It was kinda surprising to see everybody interested in the handmade stuff.” The positive response inspired them to sell at farmers’ markets that summer. “It went really great from there,” Flaig says. “People really liked the quality.” “We kinda winged it in the beginning,” says Barrell, whose father had experi-
S U M M E R 2018
ence running his own business and offered basic advice, “but otherwise, we just started making stuff, and looked at markets to sell it and see if we could grow it.” They sold around 100 cutting boards and dozens of sets of coasters that first summer. A year later, orders are coming in almost daily. They attribute this growth to the uniqueness and quality of their woodworking. “We’ve gained so much knowledge over a year,” Flaig says. “We just tested the waters with that first market at the church, but we’ve learned a lot since then,” his friend agrees. Most of their knowledge has come from the Internet. “All our resources are online; you can see what anyone does all around the world,” Barrell says. “Everything you need to know is there.” They don’t have a YouTube channel yet, but they believe it’s important for their customers to understand the process of their craft. They post dozens of images on social media. “It’s not a big factory; it’s us just using our hands, and building from start to finish,” Barrell says. They build traditional household items, but their pieces are colourful works of art as much as functional tools. “The grains are just so beautiful,” Barrell explains, “and there’s so many patterns that can form from the wood.” “I never thought, when we got into this, wood could be purple or orange in colour. It’s really amazing.” It’s these attributes that largely determine the end result, he adds. The cutting boards, for instance, take shape from strips of a variety of hardwoods, which they arrange and rearrange until they are satisfied that they have created a unique and vibrant piece. “It’s crazy – people always ask if they’re stained and dyed, but we don’t do any of that on any of our products,” Flaig explains. “It’s the wood.”
“We wanted to make products that people could use but were also not like everything else out there” Barrell agrees, adding that they’ve become selective about what they use, often spending hours choosing boards from suppliers. They use waterproof glue for the kitchen products and coat them with food-safe mineral oil, while candleholders, coasters and napkin holders have up to 10 coats of clear finish. This all takes time. “There are long nights of going out (to the garage) every two hours to throw on the next coat,” Barrell admits. Their families have been very supportive, says Flaig, with Barrell’s father expressing pride in their ability to build “a very stable business.” “This is the best time in our lives to do this,” Flaig reflects. “We’re still in school … we don’t have a mortgage or kids.”
How do they balance the demands of their craft with those of high school? “Time management is key for all of this,” Barrell says without hesitation. “I go from homework to woodwork.” “It’s not easy,” Flaig admits.“ There’s a lot of work to owning your own business.” However, he quickly adds, crafting a quality product is rewarding. After graduation, Barrell is studying carpentry and construction, while Flaig has his sights on a business education. “We’re going to learn two different things that complement each other,” Barrell says. Their plan after post-secondary is to buy existing houses, and remodel them, adding in handcrafted features like wooden mantles, countertops and railings. “This is just our beginning for sure,” Flaig says. life
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Liam and Graham in the shop
S U M M E R 2018
G R E AT L I F E | M U S I C
E H “T
O P IM STO
T T TR WYA Y B Y R
” T R
Y RE KRIST Y B TOS | PHO
Football coach, fitness trainer and rap artist Willy SnYpeS (real name Willie Williams) is not your average Airdrian. Born in Queens, NY, but raised in Lauderdale Lakes, Fla., SnYpeS has lived in Airdrie since 2011. “Around here, I’m known as The Import,” he laughs, but he prefers to be called SnYpeS, an alias that started in high school football. He was one of the smaller defensive players, but he was fast, “sniping” opposing players. “You didn’t see me coming, but you always felt it.” When he began recording music and working on his character as an artist, he kept the alias. “My name has history.” The 34-year-old is an assistant football coach at Airdrie’s George McDougall High School, works for Coca-Cola, and is a fitness trainer, but his life is about the music.
S U M M E R 2018
G R E AT L I F E | M U S I C
“ I found that with all the experience of things I’d been through growing up, I was able to just put it to music” 20
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SnYpeS has his own DJ business and indie label, CornerBoy Music Entertainment, named for his childhood home on a street corner where he began rapping. Like many street artists, SnYpeS traces his musical lineage back to his childhood. He was raised by a single mother who kept SnYpeS and his two brothers out of trouble by keeping them busy. “To be honest, (Fort Lauderdale) was a place (where) if you weren’t into either sports or the books, you were into the street doing something you weren’t supposed to.” He played high school and college football, earning several scholarships, but music was never far away. “I DJed, but I didn’t always see myself as an artist.” SnYpeS became serious about his art after a visit to Calgary in 2005. He was visiting a college friend, a Canadian DJ, who invited him to a recording studio where a rap artist was “laying down” a track. Inspired, SnYpeS began penning lyrics, following the beat the rapper was using. “I found that with all the experience of things I’d been through growing up, I was able to just put it to music.” The rapper liked what SnYpeS had written; he said, “The track is yours,” and included the piece on the album. He has since built a reputation as an artist whose music is authentic. SnYpeS has one album of his own, Baggage Claim, several singles and videos through his indie label, several projects on the go, and numerous performance credits with the likes of Young Jeezy, Choclair and Beanie Man. “People say you need to be in the studio pumping stuff out if you want to stay relevant as an artist,” says SnYpeS. “For me, it’s not about the fame; it’s about sharing my story, right?” “If people want to know more about me, I say listen to my music.” His music often contains explicit lyrics, touching on the rough edges of his experiences, but songs like Around the Globe, written for breast cancer awareness, and Mustangs Like (George Mac be like boom!), a fist-pumping anthem for the George McDougall Mustangs football team, speak to the many nuances of real life. And real life includes family, one of the reasons SnYpeS is living in Canada. He married the cousin of his Canadian DJ friend, and the couple now has a five-year old daughter and an infant son. “I traded the palm trees for the snow, you know, because my wife lived here.” His label encourages local artists, offering support from writing to marketing, and promotes what he calls his Feed the Block initiative, where he and friends deliver food to people in need at Christmas. “At the end of the day, it’s not about football coaching, or fitness training, or even the music; it’s about giving back to the community.” life
G R E AT L I F E | E V E N TS
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Summer Scheduled Fun MAY 30 - OCT. 3 AIRDRIE FARMERS MARKET Plainsmen Arena Open Wednesdays from 3:30-7 p.m., rain or shine. JUNE - SEPTEMBER 2ND ANNUAL RANDOM ARTS OF KINDNESS Airdrie Regional Arts Society Be on the lookout for artwork created by Society members and randomly placed throughout Airdrie. Yours to keep and enjoy if found. Details at airdrieartssociety.ca JUNE 16 SICK GUITAR CLINIC Cornerstone Church Presented by SLAM. Learn what it takes to rock out with your guitar out! With Gilby Clarke, Ron Thal and Sean Kelly. $100, six-hour clinic. All ages welcome. Doors open 10 a.m. Visit slaminairdrie.com for details. JUNE 28 CANADA DAY FARMERS MARKET Crossfield Community Centre Hosted by the Crossfield Farmers Market, offering the best in local produce, baked goods, handmade arts and crafts and more. Check Facebook for details. JUNE 28 - JULY 2 51st ANNUAL AIRDRIE PRO RODEO Airdrie Rodeo Grounds With exciting highlights such as bull riding, bareback and saddle bronc riding, steer wrestling, steer riding, team roping and barrel racing, the Airdrie Pro Rodeo always draws a great crowd. June 28: Bull Riding Bonanza 7 p.m.; June 29-30: junior rodeo 6 p.m., pro rodeo 7 p.m.; July 1-2: junior rodeo 2 p.m., pro rodeo 3 p.m. New this year: enjoy mini broncs June 30-July 2, giving youth the chance to compete in the saddle and bareback bronc events. Live entertainment June 29-July 1. More details and tickets online. JULY 1 CANADA DAY PARADE Main Street Enjoy great floats and entertainment. Parade 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Note: roads closed 9 a.m. till 30 minute after parade ends. City Hall open for use of washrooms.
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JULY 1 CANADA DAY STREET FESTIVAL City Hall Begins following the Canada Day parade. Enjoy food, drink and family-friendly fun. Approx. 11-4 p.m. Visit airdrieparades.com JULY 1 CANADA DAY FIREWORKS Chinook Winds Park Fireworks start at approximately 10:45 p.m. Visit airdrieparades.com JULY 21 AIRDRIE AG SOCIETY RANCH HAND COMPETITION Airdrie Rodeo Grounds See how a working ranch operates. Spectators see firsthand the cattle handling skills used by local area ranchers and farmers. Events include simulated branding; team sorting; team penning; simulated doctoring and trailer loading of cattle; and, for the kids, a calf scramble. Food and beverages will be available for purchase. 12-4:30 p.m. JULY 27-29 BIKES & BULLS CHARITY EVENT Airdrie Air Park This 8th annual community fundraiser is hosted by the Airdrie Oilmen’s Association, featuring pro bull riding, a show and shine, bike rally and live music. JULY 29 MIGHTY MACHINES DAY Main Street Square/Airdrie Public Library A celebration of trucks, vehicles, machines, and all things that go, held in the Main Street Square parking lot. Airdrie Public Library will host story times and other literacy programming. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. AUG. 11 AIRDRIE SUMMER CLASSIC CHARITY CAR SHOW & SHINE Nose Creek Park Presented by the Time Traveller’s Car Club of Airdrie. A family event offering a little bit for everyone. All proceeds donated to local charities. No admission fee for spectators but a food bank donation is requested. For spectators the show runs 10 a.m.-4 p.m. (Entry fee for show vehicles is $15; registration 8 a.m.-12 noon.) New for 2018: a poker run and cruise Aug. 10, 6-8:30 p.m. Details online.
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G R E AT L I F E | ST Y L E
evin is a husband, father and heavy equipment operator with a glowing personality, a practical approach to life and a wonderful sense of humour. His wife Chrissy told me that she nominated him for this makeover because “he is really very handsome but it doesn’t show because of how he dresses.” Kevin admitted that he has “zero skill in style” but is willing to step outside his comfort zone. Lifestyle determines style. Kevin enjoys evenings out with his wife, spending time with his children, snowboarding and playing video games. Between that and having a set of rules for what to wear for his job, it was no surprise that Kevin’s very limited wardrobe was made up of a few pairs of DIY-hemmed jeans and T-shirts. His prized wardrobe possession is a pair of docks Chrissy got him as a gift. “I wear them everywhere – they are just so comfortable,” Kevin told me. Here’s a man who clearly values comfort and practicality in his clothing.
KEVIN FRANCO STEPS OUT OF THE COMFORT ZONE WITH STYLIST ANTHONY SANNI | PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER
airdrielife.com airdrielife .com | | S USM UM MEMR E2018 R 2018
S U M M E R 2018
G R E AT L I F E | ST Y L E
“Who says you can’t have it all?”
But who says you can’t have it all? That became our goal. And with that, it was off to pick out three stylish looks from the wide selection of stores at CrossIron Mills. For outfit one, we went to Banana Republic for a dashing date-night look that works just as well for the pub as for a romantic dinner. The shoes, from DSW, are burnished brown leather loafers – a slip-on shoe that is perfect for Kevin’s easy-going personality, but still very elegant. Chrissy can be sure Kevin’s looks will shine through with this colour combination on their next date. For outfit two, we hit Winners. Kevin got a cool casual look for summer days out with the family with the option to layer himself or any one of his kids with a lightweight sweater if it gets chilly. On his feet, patterned Vans sneakers from Journeys co-ordinate nicely and give the look a bold footing without being loud or garish. Stylish? Check. Practical? Double check. Lastly, look three is Kevin in clean, sporty outdoor leisure attire. Linen-blend fabric shorts from Levi’s will regulate the heat, and a roll-up long-sleeve Henley in a soft cotton fabric from H&M is a notch above a plain T-shirt but not too stuffy to wear at play. Next it was time for some new eye wear from Airdrie Eyecare Centre. “Kevin’s previous frames were a bit too big on him,” says Hilary Noble, registered optician. “They also didn’t really suit his personality. We decided to look for something a bit bolder and younger.” Kevin was initially nervous about wearing a plastic frame. He said he’s hard on things and was worried plastic wouldn’t be durable enough. He was also concerned that the style might be too edgy. Hilary explained to Kevin that a proper-fitting frame will always be the most durable, regardless of whether it’s plastic or metal, because it’s most likely to stay on your face. When Kevin put on the Ray-Ban frames, it was clear he’d found the perfect pair, says Hilary. “Not only are they an excellent fit, they’re incredibly versatile. And they definitely suit his fun, laid-back personality!” The smart Wayfarer sunglasses from Airdrie Eyecare Centre were another stylish choice, helping Kevin to keep the sun at bay. “Kevin has great curl in his hair,” says Wendy BatesWiebe with The Hair Lounge, “so we decided to tame the wild and give him a more manageable cut to accommodate his curl. We shaped his beard to give him a cleaner and more modern look.” The man bun shows off Kevin’s great smile and new glasses. life Anthony Sanni, senior image consultant, is founder of Suit & Hammer Style Image Consulting
S U M M E R 2018
1000 East Lake Boulevard NE Airdrie, Alberta 403.948.8824
Come and experience LIVE theatre The Bert Church LIVE Theatre offers so much here in Airdrie.
Sneak peek into our 2018/2019 shows: Aaron Goodvin, Heather Rankin “Picture Perfect Christmas”, Fred Penner, Luke McMaster, Trevor Panczak, Celtic Tenors and Spidey “Make Believe – Magic of Your Mind”. Visit thebertchurchtheatre.com for show information and more.
A a G R E AT L I F E | A M A Z I N G E V E N T
2018 Amazing Airdrie Women The 2018 Amazing Airdrie Women Awards were held May 11 and it truly was an amazing day of celebration for Airdrie women. Guest speaker Ally Lane enthralled the sold-out crowd sharing her personal journey through breast cancer with humour while host and publisher Sherry Shaw-Froggatt presented the awards. Judging by the laughter, applause and abundance of hugs all around the room, it was deemed another successful wrap-up for a program created in 2011. Shaw-Froggatt says the awards were always meant not to single out any particular women, but to recognize the role of women in our community, whether it be in the home, at work, on the sidelines or on the field. â€œBringing everyone together like this shows the power we have to affect change in our own community. I am honoured to showcase the stories of these women, and all women in Airdrie.â€? Special thanks to our sponsors: Pharmasave on Centre, Davis Chevrolet, McKee Homes, Pureform Radiology, Cream Body & Bath, TD and Airdrie Eyecare Centre. life
L to R: Kara Fulton, Cream Amazing Determination; Victoria Scattergood, Pureform (Tracy Work Memorial) Amazing Courage; Crystal Boys, Pharmasave on Centre Amazing Heart; Katherine Funk, TD Amazing Promise; and Sherry Shaw-Froggatt, publisher
Nominations for the 2019 Amazing Airdrie Women are now open online at airdrielife.com
S U M M E R 2018
F45 TRAINING IS READY TO
CHANGE THE WAY YOU WORK OUT. Local wellness enthusiasts Dylan and Vanessa Dagenais have partnered with the fastest growing fitness network in the world to open a new location at 401 Coopers Boulevard. Offering the world’s best 45-minute workout, F45 combines functional, high intensity interval and circuit training in a team atmosphere with two personal trainers. The outcome is extremely innovative, motivating and results-driven 45-minute workouts. The 28-year-olds with two kids caught on to the franchise shortly after their second child was born in 2016.“It changed my life,” said Vanessa of going to the second location ever in Canada in Chestermere. She lost almost 40 pounds in three months by working out five days a week at F45 Training. Dylan said they already dreamed of owning a gym, and this opportunity was their calling. They’ve spent the last year planning and developing their southwest Airdrie location. He’s excited to give all the benefits of a professional training program at a fraction of the price of a personal trainer. “We
are a community, and we offer so much more than just a facility for you to just show up and work out in,” he said. Vanessa is pumped for people to take in some of the gym’s ever-changing workout routines created from over 4,000 exercises. “We’re getting excited to change peoples lives as it changed ours,” she said. “I have so much more energy and confidence, and I get so much more done now that I’m an F45 member.” Dylan said the community atmosphere and live DJs on Saturdays make for an extremely unique experience. “I don’t think you could ever push yourself as hard as you can with this,” he said. “It’s somewhere you can go and meet friends.” F45 Training has no mirrors, no treadmills and no egos! Newcomers can try it out for free for two weeks on a trial offer. Included in your F45 membership is a branded app providing meal plans, grocery lists, nutritional tips, goal tracking and more!
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. . . . o t a m o T y a s u o Y G R E AT L I F E | H O M E G R OW N
PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI
Airdrians have good taste. Some even make it their hobby. This issue, we caught up with Jeff Casey, of Casey’s Heirloom Tomatoes, who grows gorgeous gems in his own backyard.
airdrielife: When did you start growing tomatoes? What got you hooked? Jeff Casey: I started growing tomatoes while I was living in Hokkaido, Japan, teaching English on the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program in 1995. I came back to Canada and tried to grow tomatoes in Airdrie, and the four hybrid varieties that were available from the garden centre didn’t perform for me. With the advent of the Internet, I came across Craig LeHoullier (author of the book Epic Tomatoes, which lists me as a source for heirloom tomato seeds), who provided a comparison of the performance of hybrids and heirloom tomatoes. I never knew so many different colours (red, pink, yellow, orange, white, green-when-ripe, black, bi-colour and striped), sizes (from small cherries to 900+ gram beefsteaks) and shapes (round, oblate, pear, plum and ruffled) of tomatoes were available. The sheer range of tomatoes coupled with amazing stories of families diligently saving their prized tomatoes and bringing them with them from the Old World makes it an honour to continue to grow them today. Every year, people send me tomato seeds that their ancestors grew for generations, or resulting from a mutation in their gardens, wanting me to make them more widely available. It is an honour to be trusted with ensuring the genetic diversity of open-pollinated tomatoes. AL: What is your secret to growing the perfect tomato? JC: The secret to growing the perfect tomato here is to provide your plant with heat, especially during the night. Tomatoes stop growing when the temperature falls below 15 C so the most prized microclimate in your yard needs to be devoted to your tomatoes. I grow most of my plants in a greenhouse. Stress your plants! A little water stress will increase the sweetness and flavour of your tomatoes. But as in humans, too much stress will result in problems (such as BER – blossom end rot – in tomatoes). Make sure your soil is amended with plenty of organic matter.
S U M M E R 2018
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G R E AT L I F E | H O M E G R OW N AL: Describe the varieties you choose to grow and why. JC: I make available 100+ different tomato varieties for my seed business. Broadly speaking I try to find varieties that represent the broad spectrum of tomato flavours, from tropical fruitiness, melon-like sweetness and sugary sweet to the complex flavours of a large pink beefsteak, the rich full-tomato flavour of a red, or the smokiness of a black tomato. In addition to flavour, I also consider texture, size and shape and the history of a tomato variety. Overarching all of those factors is to ensure that most will grow in our area. AL: If you could eat only one tomato, what would it be? JC: Maya and Sion’s Airdrie Classic. I received these seeds from Dr. Carolyn Male. She wrote the very first book about heirloom tomatoes,100 Heirloom Tomatoes for the American Garden. Dr. Male distributed seeds from a cross between a large pink beefsteak Brandywine and a very early Czechoslovakian called Stupice. I grew that tomato out for seven generations, selecting for the earliest, best-tasting tomato to stabilize it. I named it after my son, Sion, and daughter, Maya, and the town that I love. I added the word ‘classic’ to make people aware of the classic tomato flavour it possesses. AL: How many tomatoes did you harvest last year? JC: I am not sure of how many pounds but during the height of my season tomatoes are everywhere in the kitchen – on the table, every inch of counter and in boxes on the floor – ready for processing and selling as fresh fruit. AL: Describe the process of harvesting seeds. Is this a lost art? JC: The process itself is quite simple: I bag my blossoms to prevent cross-pollination, choose the best of harvest, cut the tomato in half or quarters, squeeze out the juice, seeds and pulp into a cup, let it sit to ferment (which takes about five to seven days), remove the fungal mat, rinse the seeds to remove any small floater seeds as they will not germinate, keep rinsing until the water runs clear, place the seeds on a coffee filter to dry, and finally, place the seeds in a container or envelope and store in a cool, dry location. Little-known fact: tomato seeds will be viable for 10 years, but expect about 10 per cent drop in germination rates each year. For the first four years or so, you probably will not even notice a difference in germination rates. I would not say it is a lost art; rather people’s lives are so busy that they just don’t have the time to save seeds. AL: How far away do your seeds get shipped? JC: I have sent my seeds all over the world: the United States, Uruguay, Iceland, Europe-UK, France, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Russia, Belarus, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Africa and all over Canada. AL: Finish this sentence: “When I am not in my greenhouse, I am….” JC: In my garden tending to my other vegetables! AL: Can you share your favourite tomato-based recipe with us? JC: Sicilian Rouge tomatoes have three times the glutamate than normal tomatoes, which makes them the only tomato I have ever tasted that has umami (richness). To bring out the umami one must cook the tomatoes. life
S U M M E R 2018
Sicilian Rouge Pomodoro Pasta 320 g Sicilian Rouge tomatoes 160 g spaghetti 60 g extra virgin olive oil 1 clove garlic 6 leaves basil 1 hot pepper (optional) Remove the skin from the tomatoes. Cut an “X” on the blossom end of each tomato. Drop the tomatoes gently into a pot of boiling water. Remove after 10 seconds and place in an ice bath. The skins can now be easily peeled with a knife. Add spaghetti to boiling water; cook to al dente. Add thinly sliced garlic (and chopped hot pepper, optional) to a fry pan with the olive oil over low heat. Once the garlic has turned a light-brown colour, add the peeled tomatoes to the fry pan. Crush the tomatoes while they cook over high heat. Cook until the sauce thickens. Add pasta to the fry pan, tear basil into small pieces and add to the mix. Toss until well coated with sauce. Top with Parmesan cheese and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
THE AIRDRIE MAN
G R E AT L I F E | R E C I P E S
SUMMER GATHERINGS AND GETTING SEASONAL Simplify your menu Hosting a big crowd can sometimes mean there are multiple dietary restrictions or allergies of which to be aware. Try to find recipes that can work for everyone’s needs so that you don’t need to make multiple versions of the same dish! If barbecuing you can provide a variety of individual options from the grill but make all of your side dishes or dessert items something that everyone can enjoy. Get outside Suggest meeting at a public park space for a potluck and lawn games instead of having someone host at home. It is a chance to get together without someone being left with the clean-up! Have a plan for your produce The abundance of fresh produce can be overwhelming this time of year, especially after a long winter! Bring a list to the market to stay on track. If there is a new ingredient you are interested in trying out, find a recipe before the next time and then pick it up. By having a plan to use your produce items, you’ll reduce the number of wasted food dollars from ingredients that go bad in the fridge and never make it onto your plate.
S U M M E R 2018
Let’s get cooking!
In the Kitchen with
Cinnamon Bun 101
Airdrie Food Bank Community Kitchen
Learn to make this classic treat from scratch complete with cream cheese frosting. Participants will take home a whole batch!
Kids & Youth Programs
What is summer without our favourite summer treats? These dairy-free ice cream sammies are perfect to share with friends, family or keep all to yourself! Being mindful when selecting your ingredients and using gluten-free cookies or wafers for the base can give you a dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan and nut-free treat that can meet all your summer entertaining dessert needs. DAIRY-FREE ICE CREAM SAMMIES 3 bananas, frozen 1 tsp vanilla ¼ cup-½ cup coconut oil 1 box (250 g) cookies of your choice, not sandwich cookies Tools: Food processor Parchment paper Loaf pan
Cooking summer camp, baking nights & more! Kids and youth porgams are available for ages seven to seventeen. Freezer Meals & Crock Pot Classes Let’s roll up our sleeves together to stock up on popular family dishes! Participants will prepare a selection of dishes to take away. Classes are updated and scheduled on an ongoing basis, check out our website!
Freeze bananas. Allow to freeze at least overnight. Line loaf pan with parchment paper. Pulse cookies in the food processor until they become finely ground crumbs. Add coconut oil to the cookie crumbs and pulse until a smooth paste is formed. Divide into two. Rinse and clean food processor. Place bananas and vanilla in food processor; blend until smooth, approximately three minutes. Spread one half of the cookie paste into the bottom of the loaf pan. Gently spread banana mix on top of cookie base. Spread remaining half of cookie paste on top of banana layer. Freeze at least four hours. Slice with a serrated knife, serve and enjoy!
S U M M E R 2018
G R E AT L I F E | TAST E A I R D R I E
Summer is here and the tastes just keep getting better â€“ especially if you are on a patio! STORY BY DAWN SMITH Sorso Espresso & Wine Bar
S U M M E R 2018
The Woods Patioh!
Airdrie Life Mag.pdf 1 23-Apr-18 5:38:41 PM
Hey Airdrie, The BEST BEER in the Province is in your backyard
Our TASTEairdrie partners have a summer of flavours to keep you cool and full!
ocated in the heart of downtown Airdrie, First & Vine is a modern Canadian bistro that offers a fresh take on classic comfort food. This summer, guests can enjoy favourites like heirloom tomato bruschetta with fresh homemade cheese, a roasted lamb sirloin, or pan-roasted cauliflower with fried capers and chili-pepper aioli while sitting in the private patio area. For local brewed craft beer, look no further than Fitzsimmons Brewing Co. Enjoy the provincial-gold-winning East Lake Amber, Big Hill Blonde, And Out Come the Hops IPA, just released this spring, or a unique roasted pineapple sour seasonal. Hours in the taproom have been extended, allowing guests to enjoy the tasty beverages on summer evenings. It’s tea time! Quench your thirst this summer with lemon-based teas from Good Earth Coffeehouse. Try the African Nectar Lemon Tea filled with lemon and raspberries, or the Marrakesh Mint Julep that’s bursting with lemon and mint leaves. Here for a limited time only! A warm atmosphere and an ever-changing menu that sources the vast majority of its ingredients from within a 50-kilometre radius await guests of Airdrie’s Hayloft Restaurant. The restaurant uses these local ingredients to handcraft everything, from their bread and pasta to desserts and sauces, in house, resulting in high-quality dishes. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to check out Hayloft Restaurant’s inspiring menu and comfortable atmosphere this summer. If you haven’t visited Sorso Espresso & Wine Bar, summer is the perfect time to do so. Guests can pair a variety of refreshing drinks, ranging from iced coffees to local beer to unique cocktails, with Sorso’s extensive breakfast, lunch and dinner menus, all made fresh from locally sourced ingredients. If you are looking for the perfect patio this summer or want to spend an evening away from the kids, look no further than Sorso. Pure, raw honey is the secret ingredient behind the refreshing meads at Tamarack Jack’s. Brewed in central Alberta, the meadery’s signature brews, Sawyer and Buzz Saw, are both best served ice cold, making them the perfect summertime drinks. life
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G R E AT L I F E | C O L U M N
All the ways to rosé
Available Exclusively at:
• Biggies Liquor • Railway Crossing Co-op Wine and Spirits • Sierra Springs Co-op Wine and Spirits • Corkscrew Charlie’s Wine and Spirits • Horseman Liquor Store • Platina Liquor • S&S Liquor Store • Titan Liquor • Everest Wine and Spirits • Peter’s Liquor Hub • Thumbprint Craft Beer Market
Tamarack Jack’s Honey and Meadery is surrounded by tamarack trees and buzzes with activity and excitement. We use our very own raw honey full of flavour from the various wildflowers that surround us. Made from all Canadian ingredients, our mead is light, refreshing and different! We put a new world spin on an ancient recipe that will be sure to leave you wanting more.
learn more about TAMARACK Jack and our products at
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pringtime marks the release of many new rosé wines just in time for summer, and there are plenty of delicious new options on the market. The best part about drinking rosé? Not only are these wines usually very reasonably priced, but most bottles can be enjoyed with almost anything! Depending on the level of acidity in your rosé, wines made from grapes like Pinot Noir and Gamay are vinelife WITH KATHRYN ZONDAG perfect with summer salads with fresh fruit and lively vinaigrettes. Some of the ‘meatier’ options, made from grapes like Syrah or Tempranillo, are excellent with summer sausages and smoked barbecue. Due to the vast assortment of flavours, charcuterie and cheese platters with all of their accompaniments are ideal candidates to pair with the light crisp flavours of most pink bottles. This is a category of wine that is as broad as “red” or “white,” so it pays to do a little digging while Tempranillo shopping. Styles can range from bone dry to sweet. Take the time to read labels, and ask for advice from store staff on their picks. Many forms of Tempranillo are wines that are in short supply. This is often due to production methods, as some wineries make their Tempranillo by bleeding off a small amount of juice from grapes that are destined for red wine production. This method, known as saignée, is employed in an effort to concentrate the flavours in red wine. However, it means that only a very tiny percentage of their juice is used to make rosé wine. This can result in small case lots, and limited supply. Often the best rosé wines are only available for purchase directly from the winery. If you find a wine that you love, be sure to stock up on enough to get you through patio season! Some of my favourites, like Blanc De Noirs from Poplar Grove, and Painted Rock’s Rosé, are made in this fashion using a blend of the Bordeaux varietals. However, many producers strategically grow grapes destined for rosé. Top picks in this category include Kitsch Wines Rosé, TEA LEMONADE and Quails’ Gate’s Lucy’s Block, both made from 100 per cent Pinot Noir. These are wines Wi th a twist that are bright with lively red fruit character and juicy strawberry lemonade-like acidity, and offer extreme versatility with foods. Whichever bottles you choose, I hope that they are shared in the company of great friends, sunny days and warm nights, because that is what summer sipping is all about! life
CREEKSIDE CROSSING – AIRDRIE @Good Earth Coffeehouse (Creekside Crossing, Airdrie)
Wine Bar & Bistro 2017 OPEN TA
S U M M E R 2018
Cocktails Wine Beer Espresso Breakfast Lunch Dinner Patio
Kathryn Zondag is a certified sommelier, and holder of the advanced certificate in wine and spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) in London, England
G R E AT L I F E | C O L U M N
WITH ANTHONY BURBIDGE
SP EC IAL IZIN G IN N E WB O R N & M AT E R N I T Y PH OTO G R A P H Y
Tips for practicing music Have you and your child ever struggled when it’s time to practice music? Here are some tips to help your child make maximum musical progress while minimizing drama.
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To ensure practicing becomes habitual, “piggyback” it on another daily activity Piggyback your practice to establish a habit To ensure practicing becomes habitual, “piggyback” it on another daily activity. For example, schedule practice time so it falls right after dinner. Your child will soon adopt the routine; first I eat dinner and then I play music. Low-tech timer Buy a cheap egg timer and magically transport your child to 1988 B.I. (Before Internet). Set it for five minutes and practice scales until the bell rings. Then, set it for 10 minutes and work on a new song, and so on. Micro breaks Kids’ brains benefit as much from moments of rest as they do from periods of intense focus. Practice for five to 15 minutes, then take a short break before returning to focused practice. Remove the stump Imagine tripping over a stump on a forest path while on your morning run. Would you jog the same path and trip over the same stump every day? This is akin to repeatedly playing a song from beginning to end, making the same mistakes each time.
Slow it down/break it down When getting stuck on a musical passage (the stump), slow down and break down the passage to its simplest form. Play one note at a time. Then play with quarter notes and so on. Once the passage is solid at a slow tempo, increase by 10 BPM and repeat until, finally, the passage can be played at full speed. Repetition leads to mastery As a toddler, your child practiced walking, daily, for months but now walks effortlessly! The same is true for music – daily repetition programs skills deep into the unconscious part of the brain. Patience & praise Remember your kid’s not a professional yet! Take time to appreciate the little musical miracles as he moves from one step to the next – just as you celebrated each successful step when he was a toddler learning to walk. life
2018 Airdrie Arts Educator of the Year finalist Anthony Burbidge (B. Classical Music) is an award-winning singer-songwriter and the owner of Airdrie Music Lessons
Awesome Airdrie Kids! Rachel Engen Awesome Airdrie Kids 2018
NOMINATE AN AWESOME KID TODAY! Nominate a kid in your life who deserves this recognition at airdrielife.com before Sept 15, 2018. S U M M E R 2018
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he Airdrie Pro Rodeo has been entertaining attendees for more than 50 years, but that doesn’t mean organizers are content to stick to the status quo. Organizers are constantly updating events and activities to keep attendees returning year after year, says Lorie Young, a member of the Airdrie Rodeo Ranch Association, the not-for-profit organization behind the five-day event that runs from June 28 to July 2. “We always want to maintain the entertainment value of the rodeo,” says Young. This year, organizers are adding mini bronc events to their junior rodeo lineup on the last three days of the rodeo, giving youth the chance to compete in the saddle and bareback bronc events.
“It’s entertainment and part of something for the kids to do,” says Young, noting mutton busting, wild pony ride and steer riding events will still be on the junior rodeo schedule. “All they need for some of these events is a pair of runners and enthusiasm.” The second annual Bull Bonanza is planned for June 28. Attendees at this exciting event will see a full night of bull riding, with 30 to 40 athletes taking part. “If you love bull riding, it’s a perfect event,” says Young, noting many of the athletes will compete at the Calgary Stampede a week later. Rodeo attendees will have the chance to take in more bull riding, as competitors will ride a second bull sometime over the next four nights. Points will be combined from both rides to determine the champion.
“We always want to maintain the entertainment value of the rodeo” Each day, after the last bull is bucked, the party will get going with live music. The beer gardens will be open until 2 a.m. every morning. After enjoying a night out with friends, attendees can head up to their campsites, located right on the rodeo grounds, or take a free shuttle back to Airdrie. During the day, rodeo-goers can enjoy delicious fare from the food trucks at the grounds, enjoy the numerous children’s activities as a family, or take a chute tour. These special tours are new this year and will give participants the chance to go behind the scenes at the Airdrie Pro Rodeo. Tour guides will give an in-depth explanation of the equipment, terms and what the judges are looking for. Participants will see some of the rodeo stock and maybe even meet some of the cowboys and cowgirls who are competing. So if you haven’t attended the Airdrie Pro Rodeo in recent years, check it out. You are guaranteed to have a blast while getting a glimpse into Airdrie’s western heritage. life Visit airdrieprorodeo.com for a complete schedule of events
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OPEN TO THE PUBLIC, SUNDAYS - FROM VICTORIA DAY LONG WEEKEND TO THANKSGIVING.
The park is operated by the Alberta Model Engineering Society a volunteer organization whose members want to share their hobby and the awesomeness of trains with children of all ages. Stop in for a picnic, a train journey, or a walk around the grounds. For $3 per person you can enjoy a journey on the miniature railway. Birthdays and special events can be booked online or at the park.
Visit ironhorsepark.net or call 403-948-2601 for more info.
June 28 - July 2, 2018
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Come for the Action Stay for the Fun! Get your tickets now and save! airdrieprorodeo.com June 28 - 7:00 pm Bull Riding Bonanza Presented by United Safety
June 29 - 30
Jr. Rodeo 6:00 pm Pro Rodeo 7:00 pm
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June 29, 30 & July 1 Live Entertainment 44
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Are you stuck in a ﬁtness and diet rut? Have you been trying your best to get in shape, but have reached a plateau? It’s time to change up your routine and enter the
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Contest is open to Airdrie and area residents 18 years and older. Three contestants will be selected to compete from Sept 2 - Nov 26, 2018. Successful contestants must complete the full program and consent to full body length photography before, during, and after the competition.
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IDEAS AND ADVICE FOR YOUR HOME, INSIDE AND OUT
48 Neighbourhood • 50 Bungalows • 58 Growing
H O M E L I F E | D E V E LO P E R P R O F I L E
Mattamy at home in Airdrie
STORY BY MARIO TONEGUZZI
ell-known homebuilder Mattamy Homes has a soft spot for Airdrie and new home construction. The reason? “That was our first community within Calgary and area that Mattamy started doing business in southern Alberta,” says Warren Saunders, vice president, sales and marketing, for Mattamy Homes in Calgary. “Our community of Windsong was our very first community. Our product and our community design were really well-received at that time so we continued our development in Airdrie. We have a pretty loyal fan base there in terms of our repeat buyers and customers who initially bought with us in Windsong and are now carrying on and their families are buying from us in Southwinds which is the current community we’re selling in.” Saunders says Mattamy Homes has developed a good following in Airdrie over the last eight to nine years. It also has established itself by getting involved in the community. For example, every year the homebuilder participates in the Batting Against Breast Cancer event. “As we’ve grown, as we’ve done more in the community, we’ve been trying to give back as well. Airdrie’s just been a great place to do business. The City of Airdrie has been great to work with. For us, it’s gone well in terms of our community being received and our homes being well liked there,” says Saunders.
The company started selling homes in Windsong in 2009. The community was sold out in 2012, with 1,250 homes built. Mattamy Homes is currently building in Southwinds, which started in 2013, and total build out will be 1,300 homes with a mix of single-detached and townhomes. Complete build out will take place in the next two to three years. The company is also building in The Gates at Hillcrest with a total of 159 village and manor townhomes. Saunders says Airdrie today has more competition in the homebuilding industry in new communities. “There is more available with homebuyers. So with that there’s a lot to look at in terms of people ensuring they’re getting an understanding of what’s available,” he says. “With that, there’s more on the market. In the resale market it’s been the same I would say for the last year and a half to two years, where the single-family resale market has a good quantity of homes on the market. “Townhouses seen to be more in demand than some of the single-family homes but we have a few lines of different single-family homes across different price ranges people can choose from,” he says. “For us, it’s been good. It’s actually been one of our top-selling communities across all of our communities.” Saunders adds the real estate market in Airdrie has been consistent without the highs and the lows experienced in other cities. life
“As we’ve grown, as we’ve done more in the community, we’ve been trying to give back as well” 48
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HOMELIFE | BUILDER PROFILE
BUNGALOW BEAUTIES STORY BY MARIO TONEGUZZI
ungalow-style homes used to be the norm in communities years ago. But that traditional style of home was overshadowed in recent times by two-storey properties. Now, Calgary-based Genesis Builders Group is counting on a revival of interest in the bungalow and it’s offering the style in its Bayview development in Airdrie. There are not many bungalow options in the community and Genesis sees a great opportunity in the market for new homes of that style. Stephanie Garrett, area sales manager with Genesis Builders Group, says the one-level living style of bungalows is attractive to people who don’t want to go up a flight of stairs to get to their bedroom every day. “A lot of them have options of doing vaulted ceilings larger. All three bungalow floor plans we have also have double-car garages. “And we have a pretty good range of product,” says Garrett, noting bungalow plans are available in 1,100, 1,340 and 1,614 square feet. The overall Bayview community sits on about 160 acres, not including the extensive pond and canal features. There will be about 2,100 new homes built in the community over time consisting of about 1,360 single-family homes, 100 attached homes and 640 multi-family/townhomes. Pre-selling into the community began at the end of 2016 and the beginning of 2017.
A bungalow showhome is located on Bayview Circle S.W. With the aging population, either downsizing or seeking one-level living due to health issues, bungalows become a great alternative to multifamily dwellings. “That would be typically what we would expect for bungalows. But we actually have a lot of younger families transitioning into bungalows from two-storeys. It’s surprised us,” says Garrett. “And they’re finding that they’re doing it because it was what they were raised in. A lot of people were raised in bungalows and so that’s what they’re used to and they’re most comfortable with.” Bayview is located off Yankee Valley Boulevard at the west end of Airdrie city limits. “Bayview is the perfect place for outdoor lovers to put down roots. Homes here feature authentic architectural details that reflect a reverence for the land, while offering all the style and features your modern life demands,” says Genesis on its website. “Set amidst winding canals and pathways, Bayview is an active living paradise. Skate, jog, or explore – with so much to do and love just outside your door….” Genesis, a land developer and home builder, was founded in 1991 and its vision is to enrich lives through inspired homes and communities. It has grown since its inception to become one of Western Canada’s premier development corporations. life
“We actually have a lot of younger families transitioning into bungalows from two-storeys” 50
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SIX IDEAS TO MAKE YOUR BACKYARD A PERSONAL OASIS THIS SUMMER Succulents They are all over Instagram and deservedly so because they are gorgeous greens and require little maintenance. Did you know succulents store sap/juice in their leaves? The best part is if you have a pot of them on your patio table you can bring them indoors for the winter and keep the green growing. Look for perfectly balanced baskets/pots with a variety of shapes and shades of green or create your own from the wide variety available at the Fulton’s Home Hardware greenhouse.
Herb gardens Think of these as your spice rack in the dirt! Nothing is better than stepping outside with your scissors to snip off fresh rosemary, thyme, parsley, cilantro and basil to enhance your dinner prep. You can buy larger baskets fully loaded (and ready to snip) or start your own from smaller seedlings. (In our short growing season, however, planting seeds was something to do back in April.)
Traeger grills Smoke it if you’ve got it! Wood pellet smokers are the new barbecue. In fact so many people (including the Home Hardware staff – just ask Tom, Colleen, Beth, Josh and Deb) say once you’ve started smoking your meat you never go back. Home Hardware has everything to get you started with this cooking phenomenon, from pellets to rubs, spices, injectors, grill accessories and smokers from $699 to $2,999. The bestkept secret about grilling on a smoker? Your meat never burns!
Forget the hassle of sanding and staining and then repeating the process every few years. Today’s composite decking is so good looking and durable the initial cost is more than recovered in years of maintenance-free enjoyment. The range of colours is even better now and installation is easy enough for a backyard handyman. Home Hardware can supply every line of composite – ask for assistance with your deck design; they are always happy to help.
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Plants with purpose If it attracts bees, people are asking for it, says Colleen Fulton, and she recommends the following flowers for bee-utiful gardens: violets, sunflowers, echinacea and black-eyed Susans.
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That’s exactly what a lot of gardeners are looking for this year – and the garden centre crew is happy to oblige, sourcing fibre-optic grasses and other interesting shapes, shades and varieties of flowers, grasses and shrubs. Customer requests are kept on file and Home Hardware will order in whenever they can.
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Semi-perfect Jayman is an award-winning builder with two great semi-detached showhomes in King’s Heights The Vivid is a semi-detached home offering 1,805 square feet to call your own. It features a beautiful open-concept main floor of laminate and tile with a fireplace and a kitchen that has quartz countertops and maple cabinetry. Upstairs, enjoy a front bonus room, featuring a large window, and a bedroom beside it. At the back of the house you will discover a second bedroom as well as the stunning master bedroom that flows to the ensuite of double sinks, a soaker tub and a tiled shower. The master bedroom’s walk-through closet easily flows right into the connected laundry room.
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The Motiv is a 1,611-square-foot semidetached haven. It features a central great room and large windows at the back to complement the rear kitchen, which includes a standard stainless steel appliance package and an open dining area. Upstairs you will find a generous master bedroom complete with a full ensuite and a walk-in closet so big it has a window. Retreat to your upper-floor flex room for some relaxation or appreciate the convenience of the upper laundry closet.
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ith our summers as short as they are we want to maximize our time outside. There are so many variables to consider, including sun and shaded areas, the rain, the wind and the bugs. We also need to think about how we prefer to use our outdoor space. Do you like to get cozy on a couch or do you want to eat family dinners on the deck? Do you like to stretch out on a lounger? If you have a large enough deck to create zones, this will allow you to have the best of all scenarios. We also want to ensure the barbecue is in the most convenient and safe spot. Each deck tends to be unique in size, shape and exposure to the elements and these considerations are integral to arranging it in a practical and enjoyable way. Before buying furniture for your deck, spend time on it noting how much sun you get at certain times of the day and in what areas. Use lawn chairs initially to enjoy the deck and discover your favourite spot. If you envision family dinners outside, make sure to go out on the deck/patio during your dinner time. Will you need an umbrella to block sun, or is a deck heater something to think about? A major consideration for the furniture is the space it will take up and the flow of people. Allow room for people in those chairs and the ability to get up and move around easily. A great way to ensure you have the space is to use painter’s tape to outline the desired furniture right on the deck. Once you’ve established the way you’d like to utilize the deck/patio and where to situate your furniture, you get to SHOP! Sit on all different kinds of furniture. Most large stores now carry an outdoor furniture series and the styles and prices can vary greatly. You can
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THEPINKWAND.COM • (587)775.7524 get everything from a resin plastic, to wood, to wicker and metal. Read the reviews. Consider the wear – will it stay white? Do I want to sit on a black chair in full sun? Cushions are a great way to add personality to a patio set and make it more comfortable. They should be stored in a weather-resistant place when not in use, so consider an attractive deck box if you have the space. Another way to add personality and texture to your setting is with an outdoor area rug and throw pillows. There are so many gorgeous options now.
“Before buying furniture for your deck, spend time on it noting how much sun you get at certain times of the day and in what areas” Potted flowers and plants warm up a space and add colour, but they can also combat the skitters (mosquitoes). Speak with your favourite greenhouse about the variety of plants that grow well in our climate and keep the bugs at bay. Like all good design they are beautiful AND functional! Don’t overlook the importance of lighting. There are options from candles to outdoor lamps and fun strings of patio lights. Remember – good design is about function and beauty. Make a plan before you buy! life Decorator Kim Purvis, owner of Aurora Decor, is pursuing her lifelong passion of creating beautiful home spaces
S U M M E R 2018
Maintaining your summer yard
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ou have planted the perfect hanging pots and baskets, splurged on unique perennials and trees, invested in a lush lawn and are ready to enjoy your garden all summer long. The trick is to now keep plants looking great all season. Fortunately, maintenance of your yard isn’t difficult, says Rosa West, Airdrie Horticultural Society president and lifelong gardener whose yard is the envy of her neighbours. She says water and nutrients are all that are needed, with the most critical being moisture. “Water is life for us and for our garden,” says West. The gardening guru says soil in pots and hanging baskets should be kept moist, but not sopping. In the heat of summer, this requires daily watering. Allow the water to run through your planters and make two passes to allow soil to absorb the moisture. Perennials, new trees and grass must receive moisture at least once a week, so take into account any rainfall. It’s important to water these plants deeply, says West. In the first three years of planting, your trees need 10 minutes of slow, deep watering under the canopy for every foot of growth, meaning a sixfoot tree needs 60 minutes of watering on a slow trickle. West notes the ground shouldn’t be flooded in the area, adding a deep-root watering system is a good investment.
S U M M E R 2018
Once trees are established, they will be much more drought tolerant and only need deep watering about once a month, as their roots will have grown deep and beyond the canopy. Grass needs about an inch of water weekly. West says slow watering is beneficial for lawns as well, noting if water is running off your grass, nutrients and top soil are also running off. Plants also require nutrients to grow. In her garden, West prefers to use natural substances, such as alfalfa pellets for her lawn and bone and blood meal for her trees, annuals and perennials. She fertilizers every time she waters baskets and pots, and does a top dressing with her favourite natural fertilizers for her perennials, trees and shrubs twice a year. If you use chemical fertilizers, flowering baskets and perennials require a 15-30-15 formulation. Green shrubs and trees, like junipers and evergreens, need 30-10-10 fertilizer, says West. However, no nitrogen (the first number in the fertilizer formula) should be used on perennials, shrubs and trees after Aug. 1, as this will promote top growth into the fall, resulting in growth that is sensitive to frost. Aside from these requirements, your yard will need little maintenance, notes West. Just keep the weeds pulled and provide the correct amount of light, and watch your garden bloom all season long. life
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Airdrie Market Advice
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armer weather is finally here and our real estate inventory in Airdrie is growing by the day. As I’ve said before, real estate is similar to a roller coaster; there are ups and downs! Demand in our market has remained fairly robust relative to longer-term averages but significant increases in inventory levels have been the story for the first quarter of 2018. Airdrie has seen only a total of 264 residential sales in the first quarter of this year. The most recent repetitive question I’ve been asked by clients, family and friends is, “How do we make our home stand out over the competition?” I believe you have to do your very best to have your home in immaculate condition, making each private viewing count, and listen to the advice your local real estate experts give you on a pricing and marketing strategy. Recently I’ve noticed that properties priced correctly and presented like “showhomes” are still selling in a timely manner. This might go to show you that going the extra mile with touchups when getting your place ready to hit the market pays off. Historically it is very typical for inventory levels to climb in the spring market but this April we’ve seen unchartered waters with an increasing inventory level in all sectors. As of April 30, 2018, the city of Airdrie had 610 active properties for sale including single family, attached homes and condos. Unfortunately, the apartment sector is struggling the most in our current market, with only 11 total sales in the first quarter of 2018. Prospective buyers out there: let someone else shovel your snow and cut your grass. Use the abundance of inventory to your advantage and scoop up an exemplary apartment. Interest rates for prospective buyers are still very attractive. An April 25, 2018, update on interest rates provides a five-year fixed best rate of 3.24 per cent and a five-year adjustable of 2.36 per cent, which is still quite appealing for the Airdrie home buyer or investor. Any sign of continued recovery in the energy sector could result in a faster rebound in housing demand, as homebuyers may start to realize what great deals are on the current market. In addition, the weather plays a role, with getting buyers out and actively looking to invest in the local market. So I say bring on the sunshine! My advice is simple: if you’re a seller, be patient for the right buyer to come along. All good things come in due time. If you’re a buyer, take advantage of these low rates and ample inventory levels to obtain an optimal real estate investment. life Trenton Pittner is a real estate professional with Legacy Real Estate Services
S U M M E R 2018
MEET THE MOVERS, SHAKERS AND BUSINESS MAKERS
62 Fact Checking • 63 Start Smart • 66 Motivated
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Businesses happy in Airdrie Airdrie Economic Development recently completed the 2018 Business Satisfaction Survey and was told that 86 per cent of respondents are happy doing business in Airdrie. Quality of life, location, community growth and access to customer bases were listed as the top benefits of doing business here. Over the past few years we have heard how challenging it has been for our local businesses. From tax and minimum wage increases to carbon tax, businesses have had to get creative and persevere. From these challenges we were happy to hear that over the next 12 months businesses were optimistic about their current workforce. Fifty seven per cent of respondents expect their workforce to grow or expand, while 76 per cent expect to hire or maintain staff over the next year. Hearing that the local economy is moving in the right direction and that businesses are either hiring or retaining their current employees is exciting! This year, 47 per cent of our homebased business respondents reported that they are interested in moving to a storefront location; this is a huge increase from 26 per cent in our 2015 survey. With such a large increase, our department will start looking at how we could possibly ease this transition for homebased businesses and help create a strong business ecosystem for them to be a part of. Overall the responses from this survey didn’t reveal any surprises; instead, they leave us feeling excited for the next few years. It’s encouraging to know that businesses selected Airdrie as their first choice and that in that choice they are happy. Going forward, this survey provides us with an opportunity to measure and compare feedback on the local economic environment, current business operating environment and business-related programs, processes and services offered by the City. life See more survey results online at airdrielife.com
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PHOTOS BY KRISTY REIMER | ILLUSTRATIONS BY LIA GOLEMBA
Airdrie’s SMARTstart program offers tools, training, mentorship and business planning to a new group of entrepreneurs each year. One of the biggest benefits of SMARTstart is the mentorship – participants are matched with a local business volunteer. Now in its fifth year, this non-profit program is designed and delivered by Airdrie Chamber of Commerce, City of Airdrie Economic Development and Community Futures Centre West. The 2018 cohort includes 24 entrepreneurs representing 19 diverse and interesting businesses. In this issue of airdrielife we meet five of the program’s new entrepreneurs and their mentors.
Kyle David Stacey
Entrepreneur: Kyle Wudrich, David Schroter Age: 38, 38 Business Idea: 948 Brewing Company Ltd. Tell us more about your business and how the idea came about: David: (Kyle) and I met in Airdrie in 1994 and have been best friends since. Our goal is to put our city on the map for quality beer made in Airdrie for our neighbors to enjoy. What ignited the spark to start your business/become an entrepreneur? Kyle: I like the creativity behind the product, the social and intelligent community it brings together. David: This is a perfect opportunity to showcase (Kyle’s) award-winning home brew recipes and for me to put my sales experience to work. The company or business I admire the most is: Kyle: Tool Shed, Dandy Brewing, Citizen Brewing and Brewsters. David: My parents ran two businesses and still managed to raise my brother and me. I might not have understood at that age but now I admire their work ethic and drive to succeed. In 10 years I see us and our business: Kyle: Bringing people from all over the province and hopefully Canada to see what we do and what makes us different.
Mentor: Stacey Lauer Age: 54 Business: CTR Refrigeration and Food Store Equipment Ltd. Years in business: 24 About my business and my role: My business is refrigeration contracting. My role is both as business owner, overseeing all areas of operations, and project manager. If I had the chance to start my career over again, I would: Everything I am today is because of the journey I have had. It hasn’t always been easy, but I love my work (most days). The person who has been my greatest inspiration is: My dad; he taught me a lot about financial management, business and family. My favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur is: Making my own decisions.
S U M M E R 2018
WORK LIFE |ENTREPRENEURS
Daniel Jacqui Angela
Entrepreneur: Angela and Daniel Kosolofski Age: 41, 42 Business Idea: Making Life Digital Tell us more about your business and how the idea came about: Angela: I wanted to create another income for our family without losing the flexibility to be there for them. I have created digital copies in the past for various businesses/people so I knew there was/is a demand for the service. Daniel: (Angela) was talking about making some extra money by helping others make digital copies of photos, documents and kids art work. The next day at work I was looking for a paper document and getting frustrated not being able to find it. Then the full idea hit me; why donâ€™t we make these files digital so they are easier to find. I talked to a department head and they loved the idea of it, but they hated the idea of being the ones having to do it. What ignited the spark to start your business/become an entrepreneur? Angela: The idea that we can give back to the community. The company or business I admire the most is: Daniel: So many great companies that come from nothing but an idea. Maglite, Starbucks, Seabin Project are all companies that had little to no money and started with an idea and made a business that leaves impressions. In 10 years I see us and our business: Angela: We will have moved the business out of our home due to growth. We will have employees helping with the workload. I want to give back by becoming a mentor for the SMARTstart program.
Mentor: Jacqui Jepson Age: 40 Business: The Pink Wand Cleaning Services Ltd. Years in business: 10 About my business and my role: The Pink Wand Cleaning has provided residential and commercial cleaning to Airdrie and area since 2008. We have grown the business from myself as sole employee to a staff of over 40, with a clientele base of over 600 clients. If I had the chance to start my career over again, I would: Believe in myself more and know that in every mistake I made I pushed myself to becoming a better business owner. The person who has been my greatest inspiration is: My dad; he is the most successful business man I know and taught his children the value of hard work and business ethic. My favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur is: I create my own success and am responsible for my life. Freedom!
Read more about the SMARTstart participants on airdrielife.com 64
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FI Like Us!
Mentor: Kari Lines Age: 37 Business: Budget Blinds of Airdrie Years in business: 10 About my business and my role: Budget Blinds is a large franchise organization, with over 1,000 locations. Of which, I own one of those locations which covers Airdrie, Chestermere and surrounding areas. We have a staff of seven people and consistently hit the top 20 in sales for North America. If I had the chance to start my career over again, I would: Have joined some sort of support group earlier where I can share ideas about starting up, running, and managing a business with fellow business owners. The person who has been my greatest inspiration is: My uncle, Lloyd Lines. He was one of the most respected and successful business people I knew (passed away eight years ago). My favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur is: The challenge of implementing changes for improving my business and especially when they work; it is such a great feeling! life
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Entrepreneur: Zakk Trigg Age: 26 Business Idea: Noodlebox (see photo page 61) Tell us more about your business and how the idea came about: I am the majority owner of a fast-casual Asian restaurant. We serve awesome food that is made fresh, is highly customizable, and cooked over woks. What ignited the spark to start your business/ become an entrepreneur? Owning a business I get a chance to provide work and opportunity for my employees, and it offers me the ability to make a difference in a community. The company or business I admire the most is: Google. I admire how they intentionally structure their business in a way that provides their employees the greatest chance to succeed, rather than forcing them into routines that arenâ€™t for everyone. In 10 years I see me and my business: Iâ€™d love to be involved with multiple businesses. Whether that is by owning multiple franchise locations, or being involved in a number of different industries.
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MOTIVATED MEN STORY BY MARIO TONEGUZZI | PHOTOS BY CHARLENE AND RAFAEL CODIO
TRENTON PITTNER When it comes to the Airdrie residential real estate market, Realtor Trenton Pittner feels he has a distinct advantage. He was born and raised in Airdrie and has used that reality to his benefit as a long-standing realtor in the community. “I use that in my pitch when I’m meeting with prospective sellers or even working with buyers. I know the town very well. I still call it a town. There you go. To me, I don’t have to look up what school’s where, what amenities are close, because I know,” he says. “That really helps when I meet with people and have conversations about the community and where to live and where to invest in money. “I can offer a lot of insider knowledge on that … I know it very well. My wife and I have two kids ourselves, one of which is in school now. It’s certainly a place we want to raise our kids.” Pittner, with Legacy Real Estate Services, has worked in the city for the past 13 years and has witnessed the boom in the community during that time. He
has made a very successful career in encouraging others to live in Airdrie. He’s also consistently been voted as the city’s best Realtor in recent years, building his business on the pillars of community, integrity and results. He strives to deliver customized real estate solutions unique to the needs of each client. Pittner’s career as well as his family and volunteer commitments with the hockey program in Airdrie have made him a respected businessman and recognized member of the community.
KEVIN HAMILTON Kevin Hamilton has successfully followed in his father’s footsteps not only by taking over the Airdrie Registry family business years ago but also in continuing to implement tried and true principles regarding customer relationships. “Just always treat the customer like they’re number one,” says Hamilton, who was born and raised in Airdrie. “The attitude basically is that the customer is always right.”
Meet three men with very different reasons for being successful, but all passionate about their career and community 66
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Hamilton has been running Airdrie Registry for about 10 years, succeeding his father Hugh, who started the business in 1962 as Hamilton Agencies. Airdrie Registry is a government registry handling everything from drivers’ licences, vehicle registrations, marriage licences and incorporation services. Hugh was involved in many aspects of the Airdrie community, such as the Rotary Club, and started up the Airdrie Wildrose Freemason Lodge in 2001. He was also involved with the Airdrie Chamber of Commerce. Community commitment was something he passed on to his children. “He was involved with many things. I’m involved with the Lodge and (am) a member of the chamber of commerce,” says Kevin, adding that he learned from his father the importance of being connected with the community.
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“Probably No. 1 is giving back to the community, whether it’s the Airdrie Food Bank or anything else.” Hugh was named the recipient of the 2012 Airdrie Business Leader Award. He passed away two years ago at the age of 85. With the downturn in the Alberta economy, Kevin says Airdrie Registry has felt the negative impact. He’s hoping the slow turnaround will be good for the company going forward. “As the economy starts to grow again we hope our business will grow as well,” says Kevin.
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Ryan Boldt took the risky step of opening up his own business just over a year ago and today he couldn’t be happier. “My main thing is just trying to bring some fun and a sense of humour back to dog ownership. It’s become too serious,” says Boldt, a former landscaper and snow plower, and now owner of Awesome Paws in Airdrie. “It’s scary leaving a full-time job with regular hours, regular pay,” he says. “I had a good little core group of people to get started. I thought I’ll go for it and see what happens … and it exploded over the past year. “I can’t believe it; I’m jam-packed full every day,” says Boldt. “I never thought it would take off this quickly and people would respond as they have.” He says Awesome Paws provides pretty much any service that’s related to dogs. “I go to people’s homes and let their dog out for potty breaks. I do leashed walks. I pick up dogs and I take them to the dog park to let them play. I have dogs come over and sleep over at my place for people that are looking for an alternative to kennelling,” he explains. “I’m pretty flexible. I try to provide anything doggie related that anybody might need,” says the 41-year-old. Boldt, who has had dogs since he was a small child, was encouraged by friends to open up a “doggie” business. “I love dogs so much … I put it aside saying wouldn’t that be nice, living the dream, and I didn’t think much of it,” he says. But the call was too great and today he couldn’t be happier for that. life
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Since you asked....
BY JILL IVERSON
e often hear that as our city grows we’re still holding onto that small-town feel. Neighbourhoods are friendly and people look out for and help each other; for the most part people really love Airdrie. But as with all things, there is room for improvement, too. As an Airdrie resident, you probably have wondered, asked, or at least Facebook scrolled past a few of the most common questions and requests for improvements we receive here at the City. HERE’S A QUICK LOOK AT THE TOP FIVE WE RECEIVE REGULARLY: 1. What’s going on with the Luxstone pedestrian underpass? Reminiscent of the ‘rat hole,’ the existing Luxstone ‘pedestrian’ connection is actually a box culvert built for drainage under the train tracks. The pathway up to it was an add-on, intended to allow pedestrian crossings when safely accessible in the summer and early fall. However, the pedestrian linkage into Nose Creek Park was well liked by residents and a permanent, purpose-built pedestrian tunnel is important to keep people from crossing the track. Design is underway for a new version of a tunnel (where drainage wouldn’t be an issue) with construction expected to be completed by the end of this year. 2. How about the 40 Avenue interchange over the QEII? The Province hasn’t committed to this project yet, but we are lobbying hard for this interchange. Not only would it improve connectivity of our road and pathway networks; it would significantly increase non-residential development potential at the south end of Main Street and improve roadway capacity to accommodate new population growth. 3. Why can’t Airdrie just get a hospital already? Trust us, we wish it was that easy! We live here too and quick access to quality health-care facilities is always a top priority for our council and administration. The key thing to remember in this case is that the Province is responsible for deciding where and when new hospitals are constructed. We have for many years and will continue to lobby hard for increased access to health care within our city, but ultimately, the final decision is still out of our control. 4. Can you fix the Yankee Valley Boulevard rush hour nightmare? There are a lot of theories on why YVB is so backed up at rush hour. One of these is that the light timing is off. Syncing traffic patterns along a roadway is a lot more than perfectly timed lights in one direction. It’s a fine balance to keep traffic moving in all directions and in the case of YVB, adding train crossings and highway on and off ramps complicates it further. We are continuously monitoring traffic patterns and looking for ways to improve flow at every opportunity. A long-term solution to ease traffic on YVB is to build another interchange at 40 Avenue (see question 2). Another is to take YVB under the railroad tracks. Airdrie averages about 12 trains each day which means a lot of waiting in traffic. Allowing traffic to move freely under the railway would be much better. This year we’re working on the design of a grade separation. Next year, pending council budget approval, we’ll work on the detour and how traffic will move when the project is underway. (No pain, no gain, right?) And in 2020 and 2021, again pending council budget approval, things will really get going and construction and utility work will begin.
Jill Iverson is the corporate communications team leader for the City of Airdrie. Have more burning questions about our city that you’d like answered in airdrielife? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
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5. Why don’t you clear my street of snow during the winter months? Setting a policy for snow and ice removal is a tricky one. It’s a fine balance between how much we’re willing to pay and for what level of service. Clearing snow from every residential road every snowfall is an expensive ask! To keep costs reasonable, our policy is to keep traffic moving by removing snow from residential streets when they become impassable. During major snow events crews will clear out some residential roads after all other roads have been taken care of. See our Snow & Ice Policy for more details. life
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g n i t p e c c No w a t r a c s c i n a g r o r u o y in t bedding
e p l l a m s d n a er tt i l y tt i k th i w Alo ng
Pet waste will now be accepted in organics carts, either loose or contained in a certified compostable or paper bag.
Acceptable pet waste includes: • Pet feces • Kitty litter • Small pet cage bedding (wood shavings, shredded paper, corncob, walnut shells, paper confetti, bamboo etc.)
C I T Y L I F E | G I V I N G B AC K
STORY BY AYESHA CLOUGH, PHOTO BY KRISTY REIMER
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100 Men Who Give a Damn Airdrie board members. Top row (L to R): Jason Bostick (website); Tyson Leslie (treasurer); Keith Wilkinson (co-chair); David Bowman (membership). Bottom row (L to R): Todd Cunningham (social media); Jack Lumley (co-chair).
he sports bar at Boston Pizza is packed and the parking lot is chock-ablock. It’s a sunny Tuesday evening in April, and the 100 Airdrie Men Who Give a Damn are gathered for their quarterly meeting of drinking and do-gooding. The men sit in booths, at cocktail tables or at the bar, munching on pizza and drinking beer and highballs. From painters and plumbers, to politicians and professionals, all are here for one purpose … to make a big impact in our community by handing out a $10,000 cheque to a local charity. Airdrie’s 100 Men is similar to our 100 Women Who Care – except with some casual swearing in their name, and a penchant for beer. Jokes aside, the idea is that 100 people give $100 four times a year. Members show up, eat and drink with some great folks, watch three presentations from nominated charities, and then vote for one lucky recipient. The first charity to present at April’s meeting is Airdrie Meals on Wheels, which provides healthy food to 81 clients (versus just six when the group first started 35 years ago). “Thank you for this opportunity, but thank you especially for giving a damn,” presenter Lois Jones tells the gathering. “At Airdrie Meals on Wheels, we give a damn too.” A $10,000 donation equals two months’ worth of meals for the charity, which is 100 per cent volunteer “driven,” quite literally. Next up, after a few door prizes are handed out, is Nose Creek Valley Museum. They’re looking to repaint their outdated display cases – obtained from the Glenbow Museum some 30 years ago! They also have plans for an exciting monthly “Redneck Intellect Lecture Series.” But the tear-jerker of the evening is Stephen’s Backpacks Society. Nancy McPhee, Stephen’s mother, shares the vision of her then six-year-old son, to make “packpacks” for homeless people and under-privileged kids. From an initial start of 16 backpacks in 2006, the group now distributes 4,000 each year, and the need is growing. McPhee recently got a call from Rocky View Schools. Kids were coming to school with holes in their shoes, and no backpacks. The group supplied 250 backpacks to Rocky View alone, so every child could walk into school with dignity and on an equal footing with other kids. It’s no surprise, when the ballots are counted, that Stephen’s Backpacks gets the $10K cheque. McPhee is moved to tears, but so are many of the men – not that they readily admit it. “It’s pretty dusty in here,” quips co-chair Jack Lumley, rubbing his eye. “Yeah, this Caesar’s really strong,” adds Keith Wilkinson, the other chair. “Who brought onions to the meeting?” adds Tyson Leslie, the group’s ultra-organized treasurer, who tracks member contributions and hands out donations. Since its inaugural meeting in October 2017, 100 Men Airdrie has raised $31,500, with 100 per cent of proceeds going to charity. (They get free banking from Bow Valley Credit Union.) The Men got a shout-out in parliament from MP Blake Richards, who’s also a member. He singled out the contribution of Billy Martin at the group’s first meeting. Martin, owner of Martin’s Pest Control, was so touched by the presentations, he donated an extra $1,000 to each of the two charities who weren’t chosen. In April, he was away building wells in Haiti. As the sun goes down on this quarter’s meeting, the men linger … chatting, and laughing. Then off they go to their busy lives until the next time they come together to hand out a whopping $10K to an Airdrie charity. life The next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 17. Details at theairdrie100.com
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AIRDRIE ON THE HIGH SEAS STORY BY WYATT TREMBLAY | PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELSKI
he Pacific Ocean is about 1,200 kilometres west of Airdrie by road, but that hasn’t discouraged the Airdrie Sea Cadets from learning the skills necessary to ply the deep blue sea. “I’ve always liked the water,” says Chief Petty Officer 1st Class Ben McIntosh (Chief McIntosh), one of more than 30 cadets, ages 12-18, who meet weekly at Cooper’s Crossing School for ceremonial review and training. “My parents, my uncles, my aunts – a lot of my family have been in Sea Cadets,” he explains. Chief McIntosh moved here five years ago from Red Deer with his family, and, until 2016, was a member of the Calgary corps. Where do cadets receive nautical training?
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“Ghost Lake, near Cochrane,” laughs Chief McIntosh. “That’s as big as it gets around here.” This will be his last year with the Cadets. When he turns 19, he’ll be decommissioned from the corps. He’s not sad about that, though. “I like the whole cadet program in general. It’s structured and it’s given me lots of opportunities.” Some of these have included training at camps such as the Rocky Mountain Cadet Training Centre northwest of Cochrane, and summer seamanship programs on the HMCS Quadra in Comox, B.C. “I’ve got friends from Nova Scotia to B.C.,” Chief McIntosh says.
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“There’s a bunch of really great kids here who come to be themselves, and to express themselves in a really positive way” Cadets receive training in drills, leadership and nautical skills, and radio communications, and are encouraged to move into specialized fields like marksmanship and boating. Chief McIntosh plans to join the Naval Reservists as a cook. Stories like Chief McIntosh’s inspire his commanding officer, Lieutenant Navy Jessica Tedford (LTN Tedford). “I do this because of the kids. You see what it does for them,” says LTN Tedford, who has been involved in Sea Cadets since 2009. Sea Cadets have been in Canada for 100 years, but only in Airdrie for two, and she was also involved in getting the corps started. “We’ve been working hard to grow our little corps in this community, and to provide another youth organization.” The program is free, including uniforms and nearly everything else. The Department of National Defence funds the corps, with the Cadets’ local Rocky View organization fundraising for facility rental and other non-essentials. “It’s so amazing to see a shy cadet – not sure where they fit in – grow into a confident leader,” she says. “You see that you’ve made a difference.” One of those cadets is 14-year-old Leading Seaman Carter Ellwand (LS Ellwand), who joined less than two years ago. “When I came on, I was really shy. I couldn’t talk to anyone,” says LS Ellwand. “Now, I’m more of a leader. I can talk to people. Cadets did that for me.” He’s also reached the top level in marksmanship – Expert Class – and he’d never shot a rifle before Cadets. Expert Class means hitting a 1.5 centimetre target from 10 metres with a Daisy 853C air rifle. 76
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Ellwand plans to stay in Sea Cadets until he graduates because, he says, “It’s like a family here.” Chief McIntosh’s sister, Petty Officer 2nd Class Rebecca McIntosh (PO2 McIntosh), is clear about why she joined the cadets. “I was a bit of a problem child. It sounds super clichéd, but when I joined, I grew as a person.” PO2 McIntosh, 16, says she’s learned responsibility and to lead other people, and that has helped her. “There’s a bunch of really great kids here who come to be themselves, and to express themselves in a really positive way. They get a lot out of it.” Her brother agrees: “The longer you’re in it, and the more you give to it, the more it gives back to you.” life
C I T Y L I F E | AV I AT I O N Camiel Huisma, member of the Airdrie Flying Club, prepares to take youth up in the air
HIGH FLYERS STORY BY DAWN SMITH PHOTOS BY SERGEI BELKSI
ocal aviation enthusiasts have been meeting as a club for decades, but it wasn’t until the last year that the Airdrie Flying Club (AFC) became a formal society. The club has about 40 members of all ages who share a passion for flying. “It’s all about sharing an interest in aviation,” says Kyle Bialas, AFC board member, explaining not all members own an airplane, but many do. These planes range from home-built kit airplanes to a state-of-the-art, single-engine plane with a glass cockpit, light twin engines and a few helicopters. Much of the club’s action takes place at the Airdrie AirPark, located just outside the southeast city limits. According to Bialas, Airdrie’s airport has been around for decades, and was even used for training during the Second World War. It is now a private airport and a landing site for many different types of aircraft. Within the last decade, it has hosted the Airdrie Regional Air Show (which has now moved to Springbank Airport), attracting S U M M E R 2018
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“We are so used to flying that we forget that this is something special, and the expression that you get to see on kids’ faces is adorable”
thousands of visitors, and even received a visit from a Canadian Forces crew flying a Hercules. Bialas says in 2005, AFC joined the Canadian Owners and Pilots Association (COPA), a Canada-wide organization with more than 200 regional and local chapters that was founded in 1952 with the mandate of promoting general aviation. The organization accomplishes this by raising funds and advocating for safety and accessibility for its members. According to Bialas, AFC’s involvement in COPA allows members to network with other pilots, learn about activities and changes within the industry and support general aviation. It also gives the local chapter a chance to get involved in the COPA For Kids Aviation Program, which introduces about 3,000 Canadian children, ages sev78
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en to 17, to general aviation each year by offering them flights in small planes. Bialas says the annual event, which involves offering a free, approximately 20-minute flight to local children, is set to take place this year in late summer or early autumn. The event has been taking place for more than a decade and volunteers like Bialas organize and host the activity. The owners of the Airdrie AirPark donate the regular fees associated with flying. Being involved in the event has become a favourite activity for many AFC members, says Bialas, as it allows the seasoned pilots a chance to remember the magic of flying by watching a youngster experience it for the first time. “As soon as a pilot has done it, they are hooked,” he says. “We are so used to flying that we forget that this is something special, and the expression that you
Above: Club member Kyle Bialas (second from left), co-ordinates with other pilots. Below: Talia Calliou-Basque and Jason Calliou are in awe during their flight.
get to see on kids’ faces is adorable.” Bialas, who fulfilled a lifelong dream about seven years ago when he earned his pilot’s license, happily takes part in the COPA For Kids event. He says about 140 children from the Airdrie area take part each year. He fondly remembers one little girl from the 2016 event who had an amazing flight and got off his airplane giddy and excited, eager to tell her mom and grandfather about her flight. Bialas was honoured to take part in her excitement as she told her mom, a flight attendant, that she might want to follow in her footsteps to become a flight attendant herself. That’s when the girl’s mom interjected, telling her daughter she could think bigger and perhaps, rather than being the flight attendant, she could aspire to fly the plane.
It was a touching moment for Bialas, who says “you could see a lightbulb went off in [the girl’s] head,” as she realized the possibilities. According to Bialas, there are numerous anecdotes to be shared about the day, adding the range of emotions the kids exhibit is amazing. He encourages local kids curious about flying in a small plane to take part in the COPA For Kids event and visit airdrieflyingclub.ca or the AFC on Facebook. The dates for this year’s event will be posted on AFC’s website calendar later this summer. AFC is also open to new members, notes Bialas. Monthly meetings take place the first Thursday of every month at the Airdrie AirPark from 7:30 to 9 p.m. Everyone is welcome to attend. life S U M M E R 2018
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ON THE STO RY A N D P H OTO S BY B R I T TO N L E D I N G H A M
“Who can say they get to live a dream with their best friend? Not many people, right? We’re pretty fortunate.” 80
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The story begins as any heartwarming saga should.
Steve Campbell (left) and Ryan Russell, or as you might know them, Olly Postanin and Jacob Ardown
Two best buds make a pact to better their lives on New Year’s Eve and then begin the craziest year of their lives. Steve Campbell and Ryan Russell, better known for their internet-famous personas, Olly Postanin and Jacob Ardown of On the Bench (OTB), can’t believe where the last 18 months have taken them. “If it ends today, the stories are worth more than their weight in gold,” says Russell, who is also a decade into a career as a mechanic with Cam Clark Ford. “The experiences that we’ve been granted, and seeing so many people smiling because of us, is worth more than any amount of money.” Their contentedness in the midst of struggle and seemingly instant success is impressive. “My manager told me she would never hold me back from any opportunity,” says Russell. “In return, I work as many hours as I possibly can.” At the time of our interview, Campbell is working at Tesco in Calgary, where he often finds himself behind the wheel of a forklift in the warehouse. One thing is clear as we speak – the overlap of their characters and their true personalities. “I’m just a grinder,” says Campbell of his role in the warehouse. “Don’t you break a lot of sh-t?” asks Russell. “Yeah, I break a lot of stuff. We use forklifts, and I just like to go,” says Campbell. “I’ve only got one gear, just fast.” With no goals for the future, they’re along for the ride wherever it takes them, which has been mind-blowing so far. Their first video eppie (episode) was shared on Jan. 28, 2017, during the NHL all-star weekend. Roughly 10 videos in to their prolific posting, the boys struck comic gold on April 14, 2017. At 10:30 p.m. they uploaded the “No ice no problem” video to Facebook that immediately went viral. It caught fire as overnight 500,000 people viewed the vid of Russell and Campbell destroying their roughly $5 cheap skates in an effort to give some tips on the fundies (fundamentals) of skating. Meanwhile, they slept. They woke up baffled. “That’s something I’ll never forget,” says Russell of overwhelming support of the clip of them skating on the concrete of the Bayside outdoor rink. “We weren’t even going to film that, [but] we were bored and bought some skates and it sparked and took off.” Their OTB Facebook, Instagram and YouTube accounts have been on a skyrocketing climb of followers and views ever since. Soon they went from posting videos of smashing each other’s coffee cups and poorly ripping pucks off plywood to similar content with higher-profile subjects. TSN gave them their first travel opportunity to interact with NHLers in Toronto during Wayne Simmonds’ charity ball hockey tournament with videos posted around July 10, 2017. The OTB boys got to meet the Philadelphia Flyers forward and fellow NHLers Drew Doughty (LA Kings), Darnell Nurse (Edmonton Oilers), Joel S U M M E R 2018
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Ward (San Jose Sharks) and Josh Ho-Sang (New York Islanders). Most notable of the bunch for Russell was Doughty. The excitement is still heard in his voice as he retells the story. “I said straight up, ‘It would be an honour to get a concussion from Drew Doughty,’” recalls Russell. “And then we were filming with him, and [Campbell] got a concussion.” Campbell felt the consequences for two weeks, but shook it off as what was the worst injury the duo had suffered at the time of the interview early in 2018. “It was pain, but I’d do it again,” he says. “We do take a beating.” Russell says NHL players generally ask if they should tone down their intensity of hits, to which the OTB boys will respond, “Let’s see what you got.” “We’re taking pretty much full-on body contact from NHL players, and we get up pretty much every time so far,” says Russell with a laugh. Russell notes that Marc-André Fleury (Las Vegas Golden Knights goaltender) got him good with his stick in the family jewels while demonstrating how to mess with an opponent screening a goalie’s view. “I should have [taken] a cup on that trip, but I didn’t,” says Russell. “My mom’s always wanted grandkids, but might have to adopt for those ones.”
Steve and Ryan step out of character for the photo shoot after their alter-ego antics
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WATCH our exclusive interview with the boys at airdrielife.com
THE NHL NOD AND OTHER HIGHLIGHTS In August, Olly and Jacob partnered with the Los Angeles Kings for a series with Jeff Carter, Kyle Clifford and Tyler Toffoli. “We owe a lot to the Kings for doing that,” says Campbell, noting that opportunity solidified their standing with the NHL. Since then, many current and past NHL greats have busted their chops while the boys try to teach them a thing or two about the game. Around the anniversary of their first post, they were filming their first “senior citizen eppie” with legend Jeremy Roenick during the 2018 NHL all-star weekend in Tampa. “Everything we’ve done is something we’ll never forget,” says Campbell. Both claim the EA Sports advertisement with Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid was their favourite eppie. Travelling to Dubai in December 2017 was another milestone. “They treated us so well down there,” says Russell, noting he wouldn’t have likely visited the Middle East without the OTB opportunity. With a growing list of places visited, the two graced Toronto, Montreal, Minnesota, New York, Connecticut, Detroit, Chicago, Phoenix and Tampa in their first 12 months of being Olly and Jacob. “Coolest part [is] the numbers you get,” says Campbell, noting he has yet to meet his biggest idol, Sidney Crosby. “I haven’t been all girly yet, [but] it’s going to happen.” They might claim stupidity, but there’s something genius about what they’ve done so quickly. The reality has far out-reached their original vision of getting some free stuff and maybe selling some branded merchandise. They’ve done that and more, often selling out their merch and expanding their offerings from phone cases to shirts, jerseys, mini sticks, hats and more. “It’s pretty wild to see people wearing your brand; I never thought that would happen,” says Russell. With the younger demographic in mind, the duo cut back on vulgar content early to be kid friendly. “We knew it was the right thing to do,” says Russell, noting they deleted some videos that didn’t meet the standard. “You can trust that our videos are going to be clean. Nobody’s getting hurt except for us.” Campbell thinks that’s been the secret to success, as other hockey humour media has hinged on being rough around the edges. The kind gentlemen of OTB have taken the time to respond to comments from thousands of fans as they have risen to fame. “The least you can do is say thank you,” says Russell. “Time is the most valuable thing.”
A DECADE-OLD FRIENDSHIP Rewind 10 years: Russell was 17 when he met Campbell, who is a year older, at the skateboard park along Main Street near Nose Creek Park. “Unfortunately [we] became friends,” Campbell jabbs. A bond was struck over riding the concrete surf, and as summer turned to fall, Russell encouraged Campbell to play junior B hockey together with the Airdrie Thunder. After their junior careers, the two continued playing beerleague puck in Calgary and Airdrie. Campbell started coaching peewee in Airdrie three seasons ago with Roger McDonald, and Russell joined in the fall of 2016, both following McDonald up to the Airdrie Lightning bantam AA squad for the last two years.
Coaching the kids led to the impetus for beginning the creative, humorous outlet that is OTB. “On the Bench was just kind of a creation of wanting to put fun back into the game,” says Russell. “We noticed a bunch of the kids training like seven days a week … the fun seemed to be drained out of the sport.” So, on New Year’s Eve 2017, the duo made a pact to change their lives and do what they could to make the sport enjoyable again. “[We] came up with On the Bench based on the fact that Olly and Jacob never see the ice,” said Russell. “Everything just came together at the perfect timing, from the names to the outfits,” adds Campbell. Then there’s the hair. “We were both going to do lip sweaters,” says Russell. “So I shaved my chin off, and I stopped and just looked at myself in the mirror and I laughed and was like, ’This is it.’” Back on topic, Campbell turns philosophical. “Who can say they get to live a dream with their best friend?” asks Campbell. “Not many people, right? We’re pretty fortunate.” As for a legacy, he wants people to remember the fundies, as the game can get boring. “I love the game so much,” says Campbell. “It’s taken over my life since I was three.” Russell just wants to help people be happy. “Leaving behind a smile is the most important thing,” says Russell, recalling stories they’ve been told of people walking away from committing suicide after having their moods changed by the humorous videos, or a story of a war-veteran viewer aided in coping with post-traumatic stress disorder. “To get those kind of messages warms your heart,” says Russell. “It’s also motivating as hell,” adds Campbell. “It’s surreal. We’re honoured.” Campbell recently stopped working at the warehouse to focus on his social media career. The sponsorships may not be quite enough to completely make the jump, but a new job may not be as flexible, so it’s time to make a go of it for Campbell. The duo had some down time from NHL-related gigs during the playoffs. They recently did more commercials with Budweiser, EA Sports and The Beard Club. They also stepped up to help fundraise for the Humboldt Broncos families in the wake of the tragedy that took 16 lives when the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League team’s bus collided with a truck on April 6. “It was so tragic, and you can tell how close the entire hockey community is,” says Russell. “It wasn’t just a local thing because we had Ryan (Straschnitzki) injured in it, but everyone in the hockey world is behind Humboldt... We stand behind and want to support them as much as we can.” Campbell and Russell aren’t done their philanthropic efforts yet, and are working out the details for some charity games for those affected by the tragedy. life
STATS As of publication, Airdrie’s arguably most-famous puck-slinging hicks have an Instagram following of 387,000, plus 59,800 subscribers on YouTube and 150,000 followers on Facebook, where their base began.
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Cat Nantel enjoyed the chance to visit this Airdrie bee farm last summer during harvest time, and shares her experience with us as things gear up for another busy season.
Local farmer finds joy in beekeeping STORY AND PHOTOS BY CAT NANTEL
Calvin stands in his field of freshly cut canola. His bees have visited his canola, alfalfa and sanfoin fields as well as dandelions in search of nectar throughout the spring and summer.
alvin Heinrichs came into beekeeping in the most unusual way. A swarm of bees settled under one of the houses on the family farm. While researching ways to get the hive to leave, he became rather enamoured with the insect. Calvin now has three hives, in which 60,000 honeybees live per hive. He tells me this constitutes a very small apiary. “I’m somewhat new to beekeeping,” says Heinrichs. “I only started this three years ago after taking a very helpful beekeeping course by Alberta Agriculture. I like to think that if I can become a beekeeper, everyone can do it.” A retired City of Calgary employee, Heinrichs and his wife Reida now manage her family’s century-old family farm. Located in Rocky View County, they grow canola, alfalfa and wheat. They also raise 35 head of beef. Bees, however, hold a special place in Calvin’s heart. “Bees are fascinating creatures,” he says. “The more you learn about them, the more amazing they become. For example, they build, or draw, honeycomb cells on an angle so as not to allow the honey to drip out.” Before I arrived, Calvin had removed some frames from his hives. Sure enough, the combs were angled slightly upwards. Each honeycomb had been sealed by the bees with a whitish-coloured wax cap. “Bees only cap the honey once it has reached the correct moisture content,” explains Calvin. “They place nectar in the honeycomb cell and leave it uncapped to allow some of the water to evaporate, and fan their wings over the cell to speed the process along. It’s quite impressive.” In order to collect the honey, Calvin must remove this wax cap using a hot electric plane. This beeswax can be used to make items such as candles, lotions, balms and polishes. The frames then go into the honey extractor, a simple device that uses centrifugal force to remove the honey without destroying the comb. Bees draw the comb and wax cap by scraping a waxy scale off of their abdomens. They then add saliva to the scale to make it malleable. It’s a labour-intensive process which is why keeping the comb intact is important – it allows the bees to focus on making honey. With the honey now dripping from the extractor and into a bucket, it’s time to taste the final product. Depending on the flowers they have visited, honey flavours can vary wildly. Having likely gathered nectar from Calvin’s canola, alfalfa and sanfoin fields, his bees produce honey that is light and fragrant. It is much lighter than the standard supermarket honey. Calvin packages the honey in 1-kilogram and 3-kilogram jars which he sells from his home. Considering the average worker bee produces only about 1/12th teaspoon of honey in her lifetime, it’s safe to say a lot of work has gone into each honey jar. life
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COLONIES: Honeybees live in colonies. These days, most bees live in manmade hives made up of boxes, placed atop one another. Wood frames are placed in these boxes. Frames usually include a plastic honeycomb foundation on which the worker bees can quickly and neatly build the comb. THE QUEEN BEE: The queen is the largest bee in the colony. A larvae becomes a queen bee when it is given “royal jelly,” a secretion from the glands on the heads of young worker bees. She emerges from her comb and mates with drone male bees whereupon she collects the sperm that will last her the rest of her two- to five-year life. Her sole purpose is to lay eggs – approximately 3,000 per day. DRONES: Male bees are called drones. They do not have a stinger. Their main function is to be ready to mate with a queen bee. WORKER BEES: Non-reproducing female bees are called worker bees. The duties they perform vary according to their age. Worker bees keep the hive running smoothly by feeding the queen and larvae, producing wax comb, protecting the hive entrance and keeping the hive cool by fanning their wings. As they get older they collect pollen and nectar for the hive. Worker bees are the smallest in the colony. During the busy season (spring and summer), their lifespan is about six weeks. Calvin holds a frame which has been extracted of its honey
Many of the foods we eat on a daily basis require the help of pollinators to produce. Pollinators include birds, bats, butterflies, moths, flies, beetles, wasps, small mammals, and most importantly, bees. As they visit flowers in search of nectar, they transport pollen grains from the male anther of a flower to the female stigma. Some of the most common foods that require pollination include apples, blueberries, chocolate, coffee, melons, peaches, potatoes, pumpkins, vanilla and almonds. Calvin prepares to remove a frame from one of his hives
“Bees are fascinating creatures. The more you learn about them, the more amazing they become.” 86
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Celebrating the good life in Airdrie, Alberta