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About TOWN Fall 2012

New board members bring energy and experience

New kid on the block

Locally owned, globally known

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PAPER COVER TO COVER ON-LINE

This About Town supplement is available online:

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

DCBIA COMOX VALLEY

The president’s message

RECORD Publisher . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Joanna Ross Feature Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Miguel Strother Additional writers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Caitlin McKinnon Nancy Miller, Miranda Post Photography . . . . . . . . . . Erin Haluschak, Miguel Strother Office . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (250) 338-5811 Fax . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (250) 338-5568 Mailing Address: 765 McPhee Avenue, Courtenay, B.C. V9N 2Z7 E-mail: editor@comoxvalleyrecord.com www.comoxvalleyrecord.com All material contained in this publication is protected by copyright. Reproduction is expressly prohibited by the rights holder.

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ith many people vacationing closer to home this year, it’s good to know that there are lots of fascinating and fun places to enjoy nearby. My guests always enjoy their visits to here, the heart of the Comox Valley. If you’ve not been downtown recently, you’ll find some new boutique shops, cafes and other changes. The corner of 4th and Cliffe Avenue has been renamed “4th St. Square” and is home to Mudsharks Café, Bridges Salon, Samson’s Eco Clean and more. It’s been re-energized with new plantings and seating and has become a welcoming oasis. There are more new shops and services dotting the core to be discovered. Walk into a café or salon downtown and you could see an art display, find some tango dancers, hear an indie band playing, or some other

bones that will make stimulating thing your eyes pop. There that you’ve not even is always something heard of before. Our interesting going on community abounds at the Comox Valley with talent and Art Gallery on Duncan there’s an abundance Avenue; watch for their of it on offer here Fall Film Series in downtown. There are September and October, so many excellent featuring films that are choices, with resoften challenging and taurants, boutiques, odd, but always worth galleries, professional seeing. Check out the services, and events events listings in this to suit a wide variety DCBIA president paper or online at www. of tastes and requireMark Middleton downtowncourtenay. ments. com. Summer in Don’t forget, a great choice for downtown Courtenay means ample visiting friends and relatives is to events for the season. There are bring them into the heart of downdaily Fossil Tours for kids being town to show them your small town offered at the Courtenay Museum that boasts big city charm and flare. on 4th Street, who have just finYou’ll appreciate all there is to disished redoing all of their display cover and experience. areas and have some new dinosaur

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ABOUT TOWN

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RETAIL

e h t r o f m o o R little guy W

Stores in downtown Courtenay match prices with box stores and provide unrivaled service

hen it comes to choosing where hen on what you are looking for. to o shop, bigger doesn’t always Todd Deters, owner of Rattan Plus on mean better. m 5th Street, admits that while sometimes We all know the benefits of shopping the larger box stores can offer great deals on big ti ticket items lik like ffurniture, what locally—keeping the community, k i g money iin th it k t it it h t sets his store apart is serspending less gas travelby Nancy Miller vice and selection. ling to stores, investing in “Our store offers a lot local businesses, which in more customizable options and open stock turn supports community services and options, so that you don’t have to buy friends and neighbours. But when one has things that are pre-packaged,” explains to weigh the options between shopping at Deters. “You can get individual pieces, a larger area retailer and a smaller busisuch as with patio sets or bedding, so that ness, does size matter? Well, that depends

Downtown Courtenay retailers like Rattan Plus are as unique as they are reasonably Cour priced. PHOTO BY MIGUEL STROTHER you can better fit your needs and aren’t stuck paying for things that you don’t necessarily want, which can save you money.” Deters is also quick to point out that even though it can be tough competing for customers’ hard-earned dollars against a large corporation, the retailers in

Downtown Courtenay know their clients’ wants and needs so they are able to bring in things that are suitable and more individualized. “We have been open for 28 years because we offer Continued on page 4 good pricing, good

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

IMPROVE your HEALTH GREAT FOR

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333 5th Street (Above Ski & Surf) Continued from page 3

conception about being able to do returns selection as well and many have mentioned to him they as good service. like the big stores because you can take We don’t have the buying power that the things back with no hassles, but that big stores have; they are able to bring option is also available at his store and is things in in huge amounts at low prices, true of most of the local retailers downwhich we just can’t compete with. But town. quite honestly we stay away from most And in terms of selection, the smaller of those items, so what you find here is retailer almost always comes out on top. already fairly priced and, on the whole, “What we don’t have, we can bring in. more unique.” Often with the bigger stores what they Up the road at the Visual Sound Store, have is end of the line items or last year’s manager John Hope notes that they are models, which can be an able to match prices with issue in terms of complaces like Costco and We can match peting with in pricing Future Shop, but echoes because sometimes we the sentiments of Deters prices, if we are comcan no longer bring those in stating that service is paring apples to models in, but we have or what really makes a difference for their customapples, but the biggest can get whatever anyone needs. And then we can ers. difference is that we help out with delivery, “We can match prices, if will take care of you set-up and training after we are comparing apples the sale.” And for many to apples, but the biggest after the sale. customers, that can be a difference is that we will – John Hope deal breaker. take care of you after the It should also be noted sale,” says Hope. “There that studies have shown that nonprofit can be quite a learning curve with the associations receive about 350% greater new technology, especially if you are comsupport from local business owners than ing from one of the older televisions. So they do from nonlocally owned businesses. here you are getting to talk with people So when we as consumers support local who actually have a lot of experience and companies, they are then better able to knowledge with the products.” invest in the community. Hope estimates that store employees Both Deters and Hope realize that spend about 30 hours a week on the phone large retailers are just part of the landhelping customers who have questions scape, but with the right attitude, selecabout their new purchases and going over tion and service, there will always be room “what buttons to push.” for the little guy. He also notes that people have a mis-

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ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Positive direction t

COMMUNITY

hat renewed energy is perhaps nowhere more apparent than in downtown business owners like Anthony McCloskey and Jenny Deters, the two newest members of the board of directors at the Downtown Courtenay Business Improvement Association. Deters and McCloskey are similar in many ways. Both are young, passionate about retail marketing, and in the home furnishing and décor business. Perhaps most important, however, both join the DCBIA board with high expectations of themselves and a genuine sense of hope and purpose when it comes to the future of downtown Courtenay. McCloskey and his partner bring Red Living to 5th Street after three successful years outside the downtown core. The store offers high quality, high style refurbished home furnishings and sits directly beside Cardero Coffee and Tea on 5th Street. If the storefront is any indication, McCloskey’s involvement with the DCBIA will definitely add a great deal of flare to the board. Jenny Deters brings a career in marketing and boundless energy to the DCBIA “Downtown is fantastic, board. PHOTO BY MIGUEL STROTHER the energy is really great and it is a bit of a game changer our business,” says McCloskey. “Part of the reaIt’s no secret that Downtown Courtenay is changing. for son I wanted to be downtown is because I wanted to be involved and wanted to be part of something. With all the energy that so many new faces and I am a retailer at heart so it fits to be in the heart businesses bring, it’s definitely an exciting time for of retailing and especially independent retailing. I am a bit passionate about it, for sure.” the prettiest little town on Vancouver Island. Deters joins her husband in established family business Rattan Plus after a significant career of her own. She has a background in marketing

New board members bring energy and experience to DCBIA

C o n s c i o u s

and in fact works on two other local boards, the Women’s Business Network and the Today and Tomorrow Learning Society. She thinks her experience will add something both to the business and hopefully the entire downtown. “I am new to the store, I had my own career and I gave that up to come on here full time,” says Deters. “It is a huge change for me but it is nice to bring all of my contacts here and represent this business.” She says being able to help positively influence Rattan Plus and the location it operates in is a great opportunity. “Over the last six years I have had zero control over the business that pays my mortgage I am new to the and zero say over what happens downstore, I had my own town,” says Deters of career and I gave that her move. “About six up to come on here full months ago I decided I wanted to get onto time ... It is a huge the board and it is nice change for me but it is to have a little (input) on what is happening nice to bring all of my now.” contacts here and repreOther members of the Board of Directors sent this business. include: Catherine Bell – Jenny Deters (Zocalo Café), Deana Simkin (Billy D’s Pub and Bistro), Evelyn Gillespie (Laughing Oyster Books), Jan Bruce (Cody & Company), Jorden Marshall (Hot Chocolates and Cakebread), Keith Curry (CV Echo), Kim Stubblefield (Executive Director), Mark Middleton (CV Echo), Sue Smith (Beyond the Kitchen Door), Theresa Mooney (Beyond the Kitchen Door), and Vashti Lehrle (Secret Drawers Lingerie). The summer season was filled with events, some new, some long-time traditions, from Elevate the Arts to Market Days, showing just how vibrant a downtown Courtenay has. The board at the DCBIA is set to help build on that success.

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

FOOD

The sweet eveningwowair

DOWNTOWN RESTAURANTS KNOW HOW TO ing for a blend of sweet, savoury and refreshing. For the Comox Valley amateur sommelier, the o your cakes turn hot fudge brownie pairs out hard on top well with local reds such and soggy in the as Beaufort Blackberry/ middle? Do your Black Currant Fortified cookies tend to come out Wine or Alderlea Vineyards as charred as your dad’s Clarinet Marechal Foch. summer T-bone steaks? Or Those with a maybe you just can’t more adventurous quite master the use You may leave the and/or seasonal of the mini-torch palette should defiwhen crunching up Mad Chef Café cussing in nitely check out the top of a crème satisfaction because of your daily special desbrulèe? serts. Recent offerIf you’re looknow slightly tight pants. ings satisfy both the ing for sweet treats grown up (Belgian to nibble on and it in food or liquid format. Chocolate Raspberry want to impress family Atlas wine list is extensive Mousse) and child and friends, abandon your and their dessert menu within (Peanut Butter dreams of becoming a contains many classics. Cheesecake). Chances are wannabe Gordon Ramsay For those who like to think if you ordered the peanut or Martha Stewart and outside of the chocolate butter cheesecake, you leave it to the dessert probox, their daily fresh sheet could be: A) a man and fessionals at Downtown also includes seasonal or B) a beer drinker. If you Courtenay restaurants. sometimes wacky dessert answered yes to either of Whether you’re looking offerings. those, then grab a bottle to linger over a glass of A personal favourite of Victoria’s Blue Buck Ale wine and a piece of cheeseis a hot fudge brownie. to accompany your wacky cake or you want to take Topped with ice cream choice of cheesecake. visitors for a treat after a and peppered with toasted Mad Chef Café leisurely dusk walk along almonds, the brownie satSpeaking of offbeat flathe Puntledge, Courtenay isfies the chocoholic lookvours and unconventional has a range of places to vening sweet satisfy the evening tooth. Atlas Café fé Though many folks see Atlas as a place to gather for brunch, lunch or dinner, their dessert list is both dynamic and varied. Atlas has the makings for a late night sugar fix be

by Miranda Post

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M Modern •Intelligent • Style Is Not A Size…

All Size Fashions Group w www.shar-ons.com www.fdj.ca PPetite Sizes 8 - 18 • Regular Sizes 10 - 24 • Plus Sizes 1x - 3x 438 5th Street, Downtown Courtenay 250-334-0840

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tastes, if you’ve never tried the Green Tea Cheesecake Tower, there’s no time like now. At the Mad Chef Café, the cheesecake pillar has a mousse-like texture and is drenched in seasonal, fresh berry coulis to finish. Think sweet seasonal sauce crafted from raspberry or blackberry or strawberry. Quite possibly one of the Comox Valley’s most serious chocolate desserts, the Chocolate F Bomb deserves its cheeky name. Chocolate meets the trop-

DESSERTS

ics in a flavour explosion. The Chocolate F Bomb recipe goes like this: combine a double chocolate brownie, a Kahlua fried banana, pineapple, mango chocolate sauce with chocolate ice cream and whipped cream. You may leave the Mad Chef Café cussing in satisfaction because of your now slightly tight pants. Union Street Grill & Grotto Date night involves a few essentials: a range of sweet treats to share, a wide selection of cocktails

and a cozy, chic room to conversaenjoy intimate conversa tion. Union Street Grill & Grotto meets all these date night criteria. Whether you’ve been dating for a month or a half-century, Union Street Grill and Grotto has two rooms to choose from: more formal, full service dining on the Grill side or a more loungey, intimate feel on the Grotto side. Recently the Union merged menus for both the Grill and Grotto, so patrons can sample the

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ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

same desserts in two rooms. Union Street’s Cinnamon dippers are a crowd favourite – vanilla ice cream, raspberry, chocolate, caramel all mingle in a cinnamon tortilla cup. The spice of the tortilla pairs well with Union Street’s popular sangria (sold by the glass or the jug, depending on how long your date is). The classic crème brulee is revamped with a bing cherry sauce. For the designated driver, try out the Union Street Iced tea. Black tea is brewed, chilled and then topped with lemon mango for a refreshing zing on a hot summer night. Zocalo Café and Gallery In the zocalos of Mexico families visit, merchants sell their wares, and communities gather to discuss the day’s news and politics. Inspired by vibrant, art-filled town squares of our southern neighbours,

Zocalo Café serves dessert until about 9pm each night. Surrounded by cutting-edge local art, you can peruse the latest Comox Valley creative renderings while enjoying a locally brewed beer, a locally roasted coffee and a range of tonguetantalizing desserts. Located just across from the Sid Williams Theatre, the Zocalo is a great stop before or after a night at the theatre. Looking for a pick-me-up before a night out? The white chocolate bread pudding with caramel sauce pairs well with a Saltspring Island coffee, providing fuel for thought while attending a play, concert or talk. Can’t eat wheat or gluten? Celiacs are welcome at Zocalo as a range of gluten free baked treats are available as well as Bard’s gluten free beer. Call ahead to enquire about the wheat-free sweets available before you go (250-331-0933).

The chocolate and almond meringue cookie from Cakebread will definitely tickle your sweet tooth. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

RETAIL

y r a n i d r o o NG rocer t

hrifty Foods, the Downtown Courtenay grocer with a commitment to community involvement, has a new manager. Andy Carter will play a pivotal role in the company as Thrifty’s gets set to open a second Comox Valley store at the top of Ryan Road and makes plans for a major renovation of its downtown location. Carter is not entirely new to Vancouver Island as he started with the chain in Victoria in 1994 after selling his own business. He eventually entered into the store’s management training program and moved on to manage the Campbell River Thrifty’s, an experience he can’t say enough about. “I came to Canada (from the Isle of Wight) in ‘85 and started a business in Victoria in ‘86 and worked that for a few years, then I sold the business and went to work with Thrifty’s in 1994,” says Carter. “I started in the bakeries and worked my way

through and ended up getting into the store manager program. I spent a couple years as a retail operations assistant to the VPs and did some troubleshooting in some stores and then took the Campbell River store.” According to Carter, the strong sense of community made his Campbell River posting a very positive period of his life. “Campbell River was my first management posting. It’s a good little store. Campbell River’s been through some tough times but it’s a great community up there that really bonds together well.” As part of the store’s commitment to community involvement, Carter played a significant role in helping with charity events such as the Rod Brind’Amour Classic to help fight cystic fibrosis. Although the chain throws its weight behind many charities, involvement with the classic was particularly poignant for Carter. “The Rob Brind’Amour tour-

We’re fortunate that ❝ it’s got a great customer base downtown here … we will have the new store coming up in the fall and hopefully we can get this one renovated and enhance the shopping experience shortly after that.

– Andy Carter

nament was huge because we knew customers of the store who were suffering with cystic fibrosis,” says Carter. “It’s a terrible disease and they’re making great strides. But (those that suffer with it) have to take an average of something like 50 pills a day. They have to do a ton of breathing and lung exercises to get rid of all the phlem and contaminants and stuff like that. It’s

really a debilitating disease so it is hard to see young people suffer with it and it was a fight we were really proud to support.” That ongoing support eventually turned into a Julia Award, which according to Carter gets given to one business in Canada each year for supporting the cause. “We were really proud of that,” says Carter. “Most important though is that the research is paying off. Life expectancy for people with the disease didn’t get much past 20 years and now people are living into their 30s and 40s. So we are seeing significant strides.” Being able to contribute to community causes is one of the best things about working with Thrifty’s, according to Carter. Although he has only been in the Valley since January, he seems excited about being more involved with this community. “We are really fortunate to work for a company like Thrifty

Foods that allows you to operate your budgets and support local community involvement, whether it’s fighting off a major disease like cystic fibrosis or helping the local schools with new library books or sponsoring sports teams. It is really rewarding.” As for the downtown Thrifty’s location, Carter says customer feedback about the store is overwhelmingly positive and that it will stay where it is. The current store, however, will undergo a major renovation after the second store on Ryan Road is completed. “We’re fortunate that it’s got a great customer base downtown here,” says Carter. “We will have the new store coming up in the fall and hopefully we can get this one renovated and enhance the shopping experience shortly after that. The company is still working out what that looks like but they’re laying down some plans now to do a renovation after the new store gets opened.”


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

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RETAIL

a

l o o h c s r o f l o o C

Local retailers ready for fall

arrive, and sales associate s September Jessica Yarrow suggests approaches, Comox mox that a recent shipment of Valley kids will begin trading their bathing ing “oh so comfy” must-have zip-ups and wine-hued suits for backpacks – and d skinny jeans by Espirit local retailers are already dy are the perfect staples for stocking their shelves in n the upcoming fall/winter anticipation of the back-to-toseason. school madCustomers ness. by Caitlin McKinnon can keep Many up to date with incoming merchants in Downtown styles by visiting Cherry Courtenay say this seaWine’s Facebook page. son’s fashions center on Down the road and simple, stylish comfort. across the street at “We do easy fashion for Trousers, customers indilooking good every day,” cate a similar preference says Livia Supplie, owner for chic, laidback luxury. of Cherry Wine Fashions. “That whole 70’s hippy Clad in the reputable chic look is definitely in ladies’ retailer’s brands with the kids,” says owner of choice –which include Shelley Greenup. “Our Guess, Gentle Fawn, most popular styles are Espirit and Silver Jeans very plain – this season – young fashionistas can is all about the fabric.” “look and feel their best no matter what they’re doing.” Greenup predicts young shoppers will continue to Although the store favour natural fibres, like is currently bursting the “super soft organic cotwith delicate tops, flirty ton” to which best-selling dresses and stand-out brand Sitka owes its cultsignature summer pieces, like following. Cherry Wine is already “Denim is huge,” receiving fall and winter Greenup explains, advising stock. Designer denim guys to come in for a pair in a variety of cuts and of reasonably-priced, greatcolours is beginning to

fitting Hurley jeans. “That, and everyone wants Toms,” says Greenup of the casual canvas slip-on shoe, which consistently sells out. She also expects to sell a lot of boots throughout the fall/ winter season. season In addition to fashion-forward ankle and military-style boots, Trousers will again be carrying its most popular winter style – “lots of Courtenay girls go for the knee- or thigh-high flat boots, so we’ll definitely be keeping those around.” While Trousers continues to carry teen fashion mainstays Roxy and Volcom, lines by Insight and OBEY have also been well-received. “We’re really ahead of the season,” says Greenup. “By Market Day we have most of our fall inventory in.” She adds that what’s in stock is dictated less by season, and more by “what’s cute at the moment.” Most of Trousers’ styles can be worn year-round anyway – “lots of our customers will buy sweaters in the summer and tank tops in the winter.”

Hoodies | Sweats | T’s

Savvy shoppers seeking a bargain can join Trousers’ Facebook grou group to stay informed about exclusive discounts. “We were the first downtown retailer to join Facebook, Facebook and our group now has over 600 members,” says Greenup. Shoppers seeking something unique will find edgy and creative retailer JACK’D Clothing the perfect outlet for alternative style. “We’re not limited to a particular genre,” says owner Deb Hickson, “JACK’D sells a collection of many different feels and genres.” Hickson stocks her shelves with a variety of foreign and domestic brands, including Living Dead Souls, Tripp nyc, and Akumu Ink – to name a few. “I try and bring together a lot of really fun, really different pieces,” says Hickson. JACK’D will be selling a lot of vintage- and rockabilly-styled clothing during the summer months, but also carries Gothic, punk and pin-up attire. Hickson says the classic rock

Griffin Evans checks out his choices. look will remain “in the mix. We’ll be continuing from last year with a few updates in terms of new patterns and pieces.” Hickson also hopes to expand JACK’D’s buyers’ market. “We already carry some stuff for babies, but

PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

we’ll be increasing our amount of men’s, kids and young teens’ stock soon.” JACK’D has yet to announce any specific back-to-school promotions, but shoppers can anticipate some sort of sale.

Celebrating 16 years of the simple things

Russel • Champion • Stormtech

atlas café 479 - 4th Street, Downtown Courtenay

www.brazencanadian.com

250 6th St. in Downtown Courtenay

250 338 9838

atlascafe.ca


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

RETAIL

d

Anthony McCloskey is co-owner of 5th Street furniture shop Red Living. PHOTO BY MIGUEL STROTHER

l i a t e r d e m i Recla

ourtenay is buzzowntown Courtenay ing about the he arrival of Red Living on 5th th Street. This boutique shop op sells high quality vintage collectibles, ectibles, tableware, furniture and home dé décor. dh Red Living is the perfect retail fit for Downtown Courtenay and the owners seem excited to join a network of shop owners that value the face-to-face relationships they share with their customers. With a diverse and well-travelled background that includes visual and interior design, partners Anthony McCloskey and Joseph Davies started Red Living in 2009 (its previous location was on Cliffe Ave) with the shared vision of preserving great design and quality furnishings from the past. “Many pieces from the past have such great design and quality that

they look just as comfortable in a modern décor,” says McCloskey. “We love to share ideas with our customers and make suggestions on how pieces can work together.” Since the new llocation Si th ti opened d iin early summer, Red Living has had a steady flow of new customers, many clearly surprised and impressed by the quality and diversity of the store’s merchandise. Shoppers looking for a bold and exciting centrepiece for a room, the mood and style of a bygone era, creative lighting ideas, or the perfect accent piece for the patio, can find what they’re looking for at Red Living. Acquiring vintage inventory for Red Living is a more personal process for the owners than simply placing an order, which adds to the dynamic experience of Red Living. Each piece is intentionally chosen

and has its own story. Over the past three years, Red Living has become a regular stop for treasure hunters who find unique gifts (often for themselves) as well designers ll as ffor iinterior t i d i and stylists looking to tell their own stories with a great find and a great price. They know that beautiful vintage treasures don’t stay on the floor long, so stopping in at Red Living on a regular basis to see what’s new often pays off. As the owner of any great vintage piece will tell you, the most wonderful finds involve being in the right place at the right time. For downtown Courtenay shoppers, Red Living on 5th Street offers the right place to look for the unique, the classic, or the unusual, and there’s no better time than now to repurpose great design.

When you’re about town…stop by for a visit! We want to be your destination for grocery shopping and look forward to serving you for years to come!

Thrifty Foods Courtenay 660 England Avenue • 250 338 1383 • thriftyfoods.com


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

11

ENTERTAINMENT

Hometown production

t

ara Murphy is no stranger to the arts or the Sid Williams Theatre Company. A lover of Tennesse Williams and Andrew Lloyd Webber, Murphy is ready to translate her admiration for theatre and performing arts into innovative marketing campaigns and rewarding partnerships for the Courtenay by institution. Miranda As the Post theatre society’s new promotions coordinator, Murphy’s combination of marketing know-how, education and love for performance make her a natural fit. “We’ve recently completed a re-branding exercise to create a professional identity for the Sid Williams Theatre Society and strengthen brand equity, connect the theatre and the Society and to build public awareness of the Society’s role in the cultural fabric of the Comox Valley,” explained Murphy in an email on her way back west from Toronto. According to the Society’s Theatre Manager, Deborah Renz, “Tara has already brought a fresh new outlook to the promotions department at the Sid. Her design background and connections paired with her knowledge of latest developments in web-based networking and social media will give the theatre many new ways to connect performers and audience.” Murphy grew up in the Comox Valley but moved east to attend Brock University to earn a degree

SId Williams Theatre Society hires local promotions coordinator “I’ve seen Phantom of the Opera four times, but none of them ever affected me the way Les Miserables did. The music just gets under your skin. I was about 10 or 11 when I first saw it and had goosebumps the whole way through,” explains Murphy. In fact, Murphy loved her Les Miserable soundtrack cassette tape so much that she actually wore the sound out in some parts of the tape from playing it over and over again. She hopes that she may help create and promote similar experiences to other culture lovers in the Comox Valley. “When I was little, my

family says I was always fascinated by the idea of sitting in the audience and watching a story unfold right in front of me,” explains Murphy. By combining her love of theatre with fresh marketing ideas and web tactics, Murphy hopes that she can entice theatre lovers young and old, local and visiting to enjoy performances at the Sid Williams Theatre. Information about Sid Williams Theatre Society is available on their website: www.sidwilliamstheatre. com or on their Facebook page: http://facebook.com/ SidWilliamsTheatre.

Local girl Tara Murphy is set to fill seats this season at the Sid. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK in Sports Management, an education that prepared her for a number of positions in marketing, fundraising and event planning for educational, youth and sports programs in Toronto. Ultimately, though, Murphy is a hometown girl. She joined the Sid Williams Theatre Society team in February in order to assist with rebranding the society, creating a larger web presence and promoting over 20+ events the theatre hosts each year. She’s especially excited about the theatre’s upcoming season. “Our 2012 - 2013 season has some new artists and a few old favourites. Our season opener, on September 22, is the perennial favourite Axis Theatre’s The Number 14,” says Murphy. The Number 14 involves a cast of six performers who play a range of characters on an adventure aboard

Vancouver’s Number 14 bus. “It’s a hilarious performance that will have you cracking up in your seat! This show has been all over the world and we are the first stop on their 20th anniversary celebration tour.” Murphy has many memories of both attending and staring in productions at the Sid Williams Theatre. In fact, as a child she graced the Sid’s stages a few times in dance recitals and each year, one of her family’s Christmas traditions was to attend the holiday CLT (Courtenay Little Theatre) show on Boxing Day. While she is self-professed ‘music geek’, dancer and lifelong attendee of music and film festivals, Murphy has always had a soft spot for theatre thanks to Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables.

(250) 338-4404 www.beyondthekitchendoor.com


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or most of the retailers downtown, their businesses are not only a way to pay the bills, but also a way of life. It’s a life that may not always be a licence to get rich quick, but it is one that allows them to play an ongoing role in the make-up of the community they live and work in. As September approaches, Valley by residents Caitlin will soon McKinnon trade their swimsuits for sweat pants. A sweltering summer season has attracted all sorts to the Comox Valley this year – from the exceptionally talented musicians featured at local music festivals, to the bargain-hunting shoppers flocking Downtown Courtenay on Market Day. But as local residents light a last bonfire at Goose Spit or take pleasure in a final sticky-sweet gelato from Hot Chocolates, they should remember they owe many of their memories of summer 2012, from musical shindigs to open heart surgeries, to local businesses. Vancouver Island Music Festival – which, for the first time ever sold out prior to the event – owes much of its success to the contributions of downtown retailers. Headliners k.d. lang and the Siss Boom Bang, Emmylou Harris and the Sheepdogs were largely responsible for the event’s enormous following. However, over 300 businesses and non-profit organizations’ sponsorship of the music festival helped ensure its overwhelming success, including the Atlas Café, Union Street Grill, Butcher’s Block, and Central Builders. And yes the support of events like MusicFest is something of a case of retailers helping themselves, but the fact they so often give their

ABOUT TOWN

COMMUNITY

. .. k c a b y m h c t a r c s u Yo

The friendly folks at the Potters Place sold meat or veggie chili (supplied by Zocalo Café and Delicado’s) in artistically styled bowls during Market Day 2012 in Downtown Courtenay. Proceeds went to You Are Not Alone (Y.A.N.A.), a Comox Valley charity that helps families whose children must travel out of town for medical care. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

time, energy and profits to charity, is entirely selfless. In addition to sponsoring the Valley’s largest musical festivals, Comox Valley retailers took major strides this summer towards supporting the continued success of non-profit society You Are Not Alone. Y.A.N.A. provides financial assistance to Comox Valley families who must travel to access medical care for their children. This includes supporting one of our own very special friend, Nicole Cobbe, who we hope is making a speedy recovery as you read this after another open heart surgery at Vancouver Children’s Hospital. Y.A.N.A. raises funds for families like Nicole’s through downtown events like the annual Chili Bowl Fundraiser during Market Day. For $15, local citizens are able to purchase either veggie or meat chili (supplied by Zocalo’s and

Delicado’s) served in a pottery bowl from the friendly folks at The Potters Place; the event was, as usual, extremely popular amongst philanthropic Market Day shoppers. And although the amount raised by the Potter’s Place was not available at press time, last year the total was over $2,500. Of course, the season for altruism never truly comes to a close; and despite the efforts they’ve made this summer, Valley retailers are already anticipating a fall full of future fundraisers. As school-aged children return to classrooms, parents, guardians, and teachers must begin fundraising for field trips and extracurricular programs; local retailer Hot Chocolates says it’s ready and willing to lend a helping hand. The downtown chocolatier is “proud to play a role in supporting sports groups, schools and a

wide variety of non-profit organizations by providing product for fund raising.” The local retailer describes their products as a ““popular delicious) l ((and dd li i ) way for groups to raise funds for [various] causes.” They suggest interested parties contact the store to learn more about how Hot Chocolates can help various non-profit organizations fundraising needs; “by providing a product that is easy to market and will leave everyone satisfied,” Hot Chocolates explains, “we can surely assist you in achieving your goals.” The Butcher’s Block on 4th Street also hopes

to help Valley residents achieve their fundraising goals. Since open opening its doors in 1985, the Butcher’s Block has ttaken great care to sell the highest quality – often loc locallysourced – food availa available in today’s market. Bu But it has also been respons responsible for facilitating a num number of charitable campaig campaigns throughout the Valley Valley, and will continue to offer its support in the coming year. Owner Greg Wilson is committed not only to supplying local, healthy food at competitive prices, but also to supporting various local charities – and especially local sports teams. “I can’t even count how many people we’ve helped out or sponsored,” says Wilson. “But I have kids of my own and that’s what you do in a small community – you take care of each other however you can.”

320 - 5th Street, Downtown Courtenay

250-334-2611

Wake up in time WITH ALARM CLOCKS BY


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

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RETAIL

h t r a e Rar E

a

The Potters Place is one of downtown Courtenay’s hidden gems

t the Potters tters Place it’s easy to find two of my favorite things: beautiful original artwork and great prices. The Potters Place sits on the edge of downtown Courtenay, across the street from the Zocalo Café at 5th and Cliffe. Established 15 years ago as an outlet for local potters to sell their wares, there are currently 30 Island potters selling fantastic original terra cotta that represents an impressive range of styles and techniques. The artists operating out of the shop must have their work juried into an inventory that includes renowned Island potters such as Maeva Collins and Gordon Hutchens. And as part of the collective spirit, many of the artists take their turn contributing to the retail operation. One of those artists, the one attending the store the day I dropped in, is Sylvia McGourlick. McGourlick is relatively new to the Comox Valley and started as a potter while living in a northern Vancouver Island logging camp and continues to refine her craft as part of the collective. “I used to live on the North Island and in the Queen Charlottes and lived in logging camps and pottery sort of started as a hobby,” says McGourlick. “Then we moved to Campbell River in 2000 and that is when I started getting into it much more. That was just because of

the opportunities. In the camps I didn’t have anybody to talk to whereas here, for example, I belong to the Valley Potter’s Club which has over 70 members. So it’s a really nice venue to get to know people and share your passion.” Walking into the Potters Place is like walking into a large earthen treasure chest. From vases to tiles to cookware, salt and soda to wood fired glazes, the pieces on display are striking. It is a far cry from the repeated pottery forms of large retail outlets and their mass produced products, and it’s a perfect example of Island creativ-

ity. Hutchens, for example, uses clay exclusive to Denman Island in some of his work. A celebrated artist, he has had over 25 one-man shows, 70 group exhibitions across Canada and the U.S., three major exhibitions in Japan, and is widely published on various topics in the field of ceramics. Like every great Master, however, Hutchens keeps at least a few of his techniques secret and several examples of those secrets manifest on shelves of the Potters Place. “Gordon is a Master and he has a good selection here,” says McGourlick. “There is the wood fire work, the crystalline as well, but he does everything. We have some which uses clay from his own property on Denman Island that is called Denman Luster, but it’s a secret recipe so only he knows how to do it.” In addition to the ongoing displays of artists like Hutchens, the collective features one of its members every month, with Darcy Epp on offer in August and Shelley Combs set to be featured in September. Like every small town, and perhaps every artist, Courtenay walks an imaginary high wire across intimacy and notoriety. The Potters Place is no different and while it is a fantastic little secret to those who love the local arts scene, it often gets forgotten or missed because of its location and is perhaps not

From wood firing to crystalline, Maeva Collins to Gordon Hutchens the Potters Place is packed full of pottery variety. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK as recognizable to tourists as other outlets. “We’re lucky that we have a place to sell our work because people come in and really enjoy looking around and hopefully buy something,” says

McGourlick. “But we don’t get a lot of foot traffic and the recession has been very hard. For some reason people just stop at the light (on Cliffe and 5th). We have tried signs and whatnot but it is hard.”

Next time you have a minute and need a downtown moment, cross the street. The other side of the intersection is, like the 4th Street Square, worth the 30 second trip off the beaten path.

Fall means: A French flair in spicy orange stripes

underwearmatters.blogspot.com 431 Fifth Street, ❦ Downtown Courtenay ❦ 250-897-7488


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

ANNIVERSARY

Too Good To Be Threw Downtown store making a difference in the lives of abused women

i

t’s amazing how many socially-based enterprises there are in Downtown Courtenay. Take the Transition Society, for example. Situated above Marigold Pharmacy on 6th Street and England, the Transition Society has been helping support abused women in the Comox Valley for 25 years. The Transition Society describes itself as, “A feminist non-profit agency committed to making a positive contribution to the lives of women and their children. (It) offers supportive programs that provide safety, security and promote personal well-being and the prevention of violence, through the provision of a safe shelter, counselling, education, and advocacy.” According to the Executive Director Heather Ney, the society has helped thousands of women and children escape dangerous relationships both in the Comox Valley and well beyond. “We were established in 1987 with the mandate of providing safe and supportive shelter for women who are leaving abusive relationships or have experienced violence in their lives,” says Ney. “We have a number of counseling programs and over the years we’ve added to our services to include things like the drop-in for women who are homeless or at risk of homelessness or living in poverty, and we have an

There are always deals to be had at Too Good To Be Threw

employment program as part of the employment program of BC, which is specialized in helping women who experienced violence, to name just a few.” To help pay for the programs that the Society runs, it opened a retail thrift store right beside its administrative office. Too Good To Be Threw does a tidy retail business and reinvests its profits into helping women in the Comox Valley. “We had people wanting to donate their goods to us to assist women who were setting up a new home or whatnot,” says Ney. “It became too overwhelming because we just didn’t have the storage space. So we thought well maybe now’s the time (to set up a retail space). So Too Good To Be Threw really became a

reality because of the generosity of the community.” To Good To Be Threw has managed to be quite successful despite the challenges all retailers face, including very high city taxes that are often extremely hard on Courtenay’s downtown businesses. “Each year we’ve made a little bit more money and have been able to augment the services that we have in our organization,” says Ney. “However, I have to say, our profits could double if the city taxes weren’t such a burden.” The reason the retail store is such a success, however, is that much of the support for the shop comes from volunteer time and the significant private donations, all of which goes directly back into supporting the society’s services. And all of the profits, unlike some other thrift stores in the Valley, go back to the community. “We get fantastic stuff,’” says Ney. “It’s like Christmas every day when you get the boxes of dona-

tions. We’re very blessed and fortunate with the gener-

PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

osity of the Comox Valley and the dollars we are generating based on that

generosity, are staying in the community and are helping women who are in need in our very own community” Last year the society used some of those profits to buy a truck so that it could make it even easier for people to make the donations that drive the store’s success. The truck is operated by volunteers and will come practically on a moment’s notice to pick up donations.


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

15

The Salvation Army turns business profits into community benefits

Rare finds The Salvation Army has been operating in the Comox Valley for nearly 50 years with a mandate that clearly helps make our community a better place.

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absolutely beautiful and I couldn’t ask for rom clothing the recovering to a better job.” feeding immigrant families, the The downtown Salvation Army Thrift Salvation Army does far more than Store is located beside Runge’s Deli on simply ring bells at Christmas. 4th Street and serves a very diverse “We have a 17 bed shelter, 14 of those client base. In fact, you would be hard beds are funded by BC housing but we pressed to find a Canadian from any walk look after the other three beds,” says of life who hasn’t stepped foot into, and Brent Hobden. “We supply meals to those likely found something individuals on a daily useful in, a Salvation basis. We’ve got a full RETAIL Army thrift store at least staff of people looking once in their lives. after our family service needs, the emer“Who does (the Thrift Store) serve? gency food bank etc. We make sure that It serves the entire population,” says people are housed and have clothing and Hobden. “Everybody that walks into have basic household needs.” the door can typically find something of Defining the Salvation Army is not an interest or that they can’t go without. easy task, partly because it is so large. It The purpose behind the store is to help in fact represents one of the biggest nonfund the programs that we have in the governmental organizations in Canada, Valley. For example, a significant amount has tens of thousands of employees and of money that comes out of the store goes volunteers, operates in more than 120 directly into supporting our family sercountries, and is absolutely committed to helping improve the lives of the marginal- vices shelter and the parent-child Center. Everything we generate stays here in the ized. However, it manages to have a very Valley in order to support ongoing projdirect and local impact in the communiects.” ties it serves and a big part of its finanAs part of its system of helping procial viability is supported by thrift stores vide basic needs, the Salvation Army will like the one in Downtown Courtenay. often give store credits to help individuals Hobden has been working as part of and families acquire what they believe the Salvation Army for the better part of they need from the thrift stores. his adult life. He is now in charge of all “A person will come into our family three of the Comox Valley thrift stores services department, for example, and we as part of his portfolio as Community will give them a voucher that says they Ministries Director. He says that the can go to one of the three Salvation Army ‘Heart to God, Hand to Man’ mission that stores and do their shopping to find whatdrives the organization makes him feel ever (they) believe will help (their) qualvery good about his work. ity of life. We want them to get whatever “I think it’s absolutely wonderful to they need in order to help themselves out have an opportunity to look after an and in fact we don’t generally hear about operation where our focus and our goal is exactly what it is they’re getting.” to be the hands and word of Christ. It is

And that selfless organizational commitment to helping people has the Salvation Army improving the lives of literally millions of people. Some recent stats have the Salvation Army providing 6,350 shelter, addictions, detox and mental health beds, serving 2.7 million meals and

providing basic assistance to more than 1.1 million people. And beyond all the good it does, there is little doubt just about any consumer that comes to Courtenay to shop, couldn’t find something of use in the Salvation Army.

Please drop into our office while enjoying the incredible downtown shopping and services.

Don McRae, MLA D Comox Valley

Constituency Office 437 5th St., Courtenay BC V9N 1J7 Phone: (250) 703-2422 Fax: (250) 703-2425 Email: don.mcrae.mla@leg.bc.ca Monday to Friday, 9AM - 4PM

www.donmcraemla.bc.ca

Early Bird Café Come see what’s cooking! Specializing in fresh homemade Breakfast, Lunch and Sunday Brunch! 307 - 4th Street Downtown Courtenay • 250-897-7025


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

GO GREEN Front Load Washers are Energy Star Rated It is estimated that on average the consumer will save approximately $110 per year in total consumption of water and energy, also using upwards of 60% less detergent, softener and bleach. • 40$ Savings in Water Consumption • 60% Savings in detergent, liquid bleach & fabric softener • 60% Less wear and tear on clothes. • Water extraction during final spin save drying time. The wash action is a gentle reversing tumble, the closest thing to hand washing in any automatic clothes washer.

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New kid on the block

resh, sweet and, some days, sandwich. pretty hot—you gotta check out “We cure and smoke the brisket the new w kid on the block. The here for hours and hours to give it Butcher’s Block, that is. a spicy-sweet smoky flavour that Known for bringing quality meats is really tasty. It’s a good one, but and more to o the Valley we only do it on by Nancy Miller Thursdays, so you since 1985, the locally Thursdays have to plan for it.” owned meat shop has In addition to having a daily hot added to its repertoire by putting in sandwich special and homemade a new deli counter. And it is filled soups and salads, there are sweet with specialty meats, assorted cheestreats available, including made from es and other savoury delectables, scratch muffins, home-made cookies much of it made or cured on-site. and their mouth-watering caramel Since the counter opened in apple pies. February, interest has been growing The counter also features cheeses steadily and casual customers are

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Fresh food and fresh faces are waiting at the newly opened deli counter in the Butcher’s Block. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

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quickly becoming “regulars” as they fall victim to the deli’s yummy, and addictive, offerings. “Everyone seems to be pretty excited about it,” says Joe Westra, hired by The Butcher’s Block owner Greg Wilson to run the deli. “I would say the biggest reaction has been from people looking for a quick and reasonable place to grab a fresh lunch downtown.” He notes that a few lunchtime favourites have got quite a following now, particularly the meat pies, pulled pork and the smoked brisket

as well as local produce. “We have a farmer who we are working with from Black Creek who is bringing in some certified organic produce, so we hope to keep expanding in that area,” notes Westra. And expanding is literally how the deli came about. Some space had become available after previous tenants, Simply Delicious, retired. “We always owned this space as part of the building, so we decided to take advantage of the opportunity when the other lunch counter closed shop,” says owner Wilson, noting that the

alterations have worked out very well so far. Step inside The Butcher’s Block and the change is dramatic. The deli counter makes the most of its southern exposure and offers customers a bright, clean atmosphere atmosphere. bright “The renovations have opened up the whole front end of the shop and customers say they really like the new look,” says Westra. “It still catches people off-guard if they haven’t been in for a while, and then they are like, ‘Wow! What a change’.” Of course, like any new venture, Westra notes there have been a few growing pains along the way. “I would say that the biggest obstacle has been wanting to do too much, spreading myself a little too thin, maybe,” admits Westra. “At the beginning I was trying to do a little bit of everything and then customers would come back the next week and find that what they wanted wasn’t ready yet or not available. But now I think I have a good handle on what to do when and what items are musthaves—organization is a big factor. “And of course as the seasons change people want different things, with the warm weather I am making more salads for customers to take home for supper. The fall will bring other trends I’m sure, so we are still doing some learning as we go.” In addition to the daily offerings, the deli has been able to provide catering services. “We have done meat and cheese plates and sandwich platters for some of the local businesses, such as the Job Shop, so that is something we would like to continue developing, too,” says Westra. The future looks bright for the deli; in fact they just had to hire more help. “Even though I feel we are still a bit of a secret, things are definitely growing here—the word is getting out there.” So check out the new kids at the Block, located at 319 4th Street and open Monday to Saturday from 9:30 to 5:30. You can also visit their website meat@thebutchersblock.ca or call 250 338-1412 for more information on products and catering services.


ABOUT TOWN

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RETAIL

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e g n a h c f o s d n i W

t should be no surprise that local business owner ner Amanda Delisle embraces change ange and progress. For the last four ur years, Delisle’s open door policy, cy, fair trade products and commitment mitment to sustainable business ethics has made her store Winds of Change a destination for by Miranda Post likeminded locals and visitors. And now, as it is for many bricks and mortar retailers, change is in the air for Delisle and her eclectic 5th Street business. “I want Winds of Change to be the biggest, best, metaphysical store online,” explains Delisle. Working with a small, but mighty team of business analysts Delisle is currently taking stock of what works and what can be expanded at Winds of Change. “We’re looking at modernizing and expanding how we provide information and access to our products and services. I’m thinking a new website could include videos, demos, and information papers,” says Delisle, a Camosun College Environmental Studies grad. “Maybe there will be interviews with specialists in different areas on products in the store, for example incense or candles.” Known for its range of sustainable, unique items – think fair-trade baskets from Uganda or Aboriginal picture frames by K’omoks artist Andy Everson Delisle takes pride in not only her store but also her customers. “We have a lot of locals who access our services and buy gifts and a lot of tourists come from other parts of the island and make a day of visiting the store and hanging out in Downtown Courtenay,” says Delisle. Gift ideas abound with everything from witty, spiritual greeting cards to Tibetan prayer flags to crystals. “Our entire focus is supporting a conscious consumer, someone

From smoky crystals to Buddhism, Winds of Change is centred on spirituality. PHOTO BY MIGUEL STROTHER ing a great rapport with local youth. “Everyone is welcome here. I remember what it was like to be 16 and people looked at you like you were up to no good. I want young people to feel welcome here.” So how will Delisle maintain the community feel that she’s worked so FAST FACTS hard to create while • Winds of Change has been in business for 19 years and in also expanding its current location (357B 5th Street) since 2000 Winds of Change • Delisle bought Winds of Change in 2008 after a career in online presence? environmental consulting She says it’s about • Winds of Change is on facebook.com/WindsCollective, creating and mainPinterest and Twitter@windsofchange11 taining trust. “We want to engage with people her colleagues offer a range of readwho are buying our products. More ing (tarot or psychic) and healing and more people are searching for services. In the back of the store happiness in their life – I want to curious customers can access private, make sure people can come here comfortable rooms and professional and ask questions about spiritualmetaphysical/spiritual practitioners. ity or contact us online. We like to “People can come in to meditate – offer a positive reading, healing and there are sitting areas in the back. I shopping experience,” says Delisle like the store’s community feel – peofor clarification. “We’re in a time of ple can come and ask us anything,” transformation, it’s really exciting. I’d explains Delisle. be a happy owner at the end of the Delisle also prides herself on havday if I knew people could trust us.” who buys products that don’t pollute the environment and are good for communities,” says Delisle. Besides providing high quality and unique products, Delisle and

Winds of Change

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250-338-7333


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

INTERNATIONAL

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3 347-4th St CCOURTENAY

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WE CREATE A MORE DYNAMIC BUSINESS CLIMATE Success leads to success. The more prosperous businesses we have in the Comox Valley, the more the local climate will encourage other entrepreneurs to set up businesses and create still more jobs.

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WE GAIN MORE PROPERTY TAX INCOME TO INVEST IN OUR INFRASTRUCTURE The more thriving businesses we have, the more they will be able to expand. The more they expand, the more property and business tax they will pay, generating money that can be used for the good of our Valley and our citizens.

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WE IMPROVE SERVICES A prosperous local economy is conducive to improvements in social, medical, and sports and leisure services, as well as in tourism, the arts, and entertainment.

4 WE HAVE MORE CHOICE AND A WIDER VARIETY OF PRODUCTS The sales figures of a business reflect its financial health, and when business is good, expansion projects multiply. Expansion brings new products and new services to our community. 5

WE BENEFIT LOCAL COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS Non-profit organizations receive many donations from local business people. Donations are essential to their survival, so it follows that the healthier the economy, the healthier our organizations.

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WE MAINTAIN THE UNIQUE CHARACTER OF OUR VALLEY AND REGION The charm of a municipality is in its dynamism and character. Those go hand in hand with its economic health. A municipality that can count on its population to buy locally is a muncipality to be envied.

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WE CREATE MORE JOBS IN OUR VALLEY AND REGION A thriving job market depends on the economic health of our region.

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WE HAVE A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE ENVIRONMENT Local enterprises purchase a lot more local products, greatly reducing the transportation of products from outside the region.

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WE SUPPORT OUR REGION IN THE SEARCH FOR INVESTORS If our region has a dynamic economy, it is bound to attract investors. If our municipalities receive revenues from business and property taxes, they can work to attract investors as well. Investors are like consumers: they are attracted to regions that are attractive!

10 WE INVEST IN OUR REGION For all the reasons listed above, buying local is logical, beneficial, and highly efficient. Buying local creates the economic leverage that is vital to the dynamism of a region. By working together we can support our local economy.


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

19

COMMUNITY

t r u o c r u Yo

Mudsharks

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ife in the 4th Street reet Square has changed ged for good. Long-time downwntown barista, restaurateur rateur and all around great guy Bruce Curror recently sold Mudsharks coffee bar. Curror has played a pivotal role in revitalizing life on the square and in creating an incredible community for coffee lovers during his many years in business downtown. However, the Campbell family of Denman Island recently purchased the shop and Haeley Campbell has taken over daily operations. The Campbell family have been coming into the coffee shop together for years, maintained an excellent friendship with Curror and love the location. As such, when the opportunity presented itself to buy Mudsharks they decided to jump right in. “We bought on June 13 and it’s been crazy so far,” Haeley Campbell told the Record at the start of July. “But Bruce has just been great helping us out.” Curror will stay on until the end of the summer and the Campbells hope they can learn how to transfer the energy and touch he built the business on into their ownership run. Mudshark’s brings a ton to the area and the new owners see that and don’t plan significant changes to the shop. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it appears to be the attitude and who can fault that thinking? The shop is one of the finest in all of downtown, particularly for

Coffee Bar changes ownership

those who love to socialize. The hardest thing, according to Campbell, is going to be getting to know the customers as well as Curror does, tto th the point C d i t where she doesn’t even have to ask what they want because she already knows. “We want to keep it pretty much the same as Bruce did so customers don’t notice too much of a difference,” says Campbell. “The pasta Caesar salad is still staying, which everybody has been really concerned about, so not to worry! It’s more the learning and making sure all the customers are comfortable with the change. That service is a huge part of Mudsharks and I want

In addition to the coffee house and restaurant, Mudsharks is also the exclusive point of sale for Tria, the outstanding catering by t i outfit tfit created t db local chef Kathy Jerritt. Haeley Campbell says that once she starts to get a handle on the business, she hopes to work further with Jerritt and to look at the potential of utilizing the outdoor location for special events, including fine dining. One thing Campbell sees as having tremendous potential is the ice cream shop attached to Mudsharks. “We have this ice cream stand that nobody seems to know about and we want to start to get that

The ownership at Mudsharks has changed but the atmosphere hasn’t. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

The shop is one of the finest in all of ❝ downtown, particularly for those who love to socialize. ❞ everybody to feel like that change is natural because Bruce is such an outgoing guy and is so well loved.” The breezy open air square across from the theatre, the museum, Native Sons Hall, and the downtown bus stop to Mount Washington has the potential to be one of the best locations downtown, particularly if traffic starts to spill off busy 5th Street. Despite strong local support, that foot traffic remains something of a challenge. However, with its high quality product line and a commitment to service people continue to pour into Mudsharks.

going,” says Campbell. “We are really hoping to make it more kid friendly and hopefully that will start to get it more well known.” Seems like a pretty good idea. Who doesn’t love ice cream? Also on deck is the expansion of the gluten free options on the menu. However, that is likely a little way down the line as she steadily sets her feet in what is a 7-day a week job. “It’s a full-time, seven-day week job,” says Campbell. “Let’s just say I haven’t seen a lot of friends but it’s a social job and I’ve met lots of new people and it’s really fun.”

Read About Town cover-to-cover on-line. Now available in an easy to read downloadable and printable format. www.comoxvalleyrecord.com

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

RETAIL

Funeral Planning Introducing Rosemarie Clark Certified Pre-arrangement Counselor Piercy’s-Mt. Washington Funeral Home Rosemarie’s passionate, results-driven service attitude has been key in developing relationships with integrity and respect. She comes to us with 10 years experience with First Memorial Funeral Services, Victoria. Rosemarie invites you to call her for your complimentary “Personal Planning Guide” and if you are a member of a group or service organization and are searching for a dynamic speaker for a 15-minute presentation on “Dying to know before you go” please call 250-334-4464. A door prize and cake will be offered for p participants. p

Rosemarie Clark Family Service Advisor

PIERCY’S ~MT. WASHINGTON 250-334-4464

The combination of good coffee, beautiful bikes and outstanding service makes the PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK Broken Spoke a downtown favourite.

Cranks and Caffeination

c

Community fair-trade dark chocolate, heap transportation, cardio conditioning, a means of exploring the out- and available in a chili-infused spicy flavour). doors… there are a ton of reasons to But while the Broken Spoke is proud upgrade your bike this fall. But whether to use Victoria-sourced Discovery Coffee you’re biking to improve your health, in its top-of-the-line Synesso espresso save gas money on the local commute, machine, the boutique bike shop is even or beat the best at Mount Washington’s more proud of the top-quality Bearclaw Invitational, by Caitlin McKinnon cycling merchandise it sells. you’re guaranteed to find The Broken Spoke is the perfect pair of wheels currently shifting its focus away from at one of downtown Courtenay’s premier mountain bikes in order to provide cusbike shops. The Broken Spoke Bicycle tomers with 30 different styles of hybrid Shop and Coffee House in particular and commuter bicycles. The local cycle offers an astounding array of products retailer aims to stock the supplies ridand services sure to satisfy the most ers need to ride in comfort, safety and scrupulous of shoppers. style year-round; it also strives to fit Valley-going commuters can stop consumer budgets of all sizes by offering by the Broken Spoke Bicycle Shop and three price points for each product they Coffee House at 410 Fitzgerald Avenue carry. By teaming up with Canadian – be it for a premium cycle, tune-up, bicycle manufacturer Louis Garneau, repair, and likely the best latte in town. the Broken Spoke offers an unparalleled The Broken Spoke takes great pride in range of road and hybrid bikes. its beverage menu, which includes cofWhether you’re looking for a mocha, fee made on a French press, a variety of mechanic or mountain bike, Downtown quality teas from the Tea Center on 5th Courtenay is the place to be. If you can’t Street, silky cappuccinos, Americanos drop by, buzz the Broken Spoke at (250) (with the crema intact), and delight871-2229. fully rich mochas (made with World

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5th Street, Courtenay

DOWNTOWN


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

21

RETAIL

Locally owned, globally known

a

lthough it is a small, locally owned boutique, recently opened clothier La Cache carries global recognition. Approximately 70 percent of the store’s stock is designed by April Cornell, the renowned Canadian artist and designer. Cornell and her husband have found international commercial design and retail success with stores across North America and offices in India, Hong Kong, Vermont, and Montreal. In fact, the new Courtenay boutique takes its name from Cornell’s first shop in Montreal. Owner Stephen Wakelin, who has called the Comox Valley home for more than 20 years says he is thrilled to see the store come to life on 5th Street. “La Cache was actually the name of April’s original store,” says Wakelin. “She doesn’t actually have the same number of stores now and her business has evolved, as businesses do. She’s started doing a lot more wholesaling. The name was available and we were able to talk to April and get her permission to use that name. The reason being is there are a lot of people who shopped in La Cache stores previously so they know what it’s all about.” Wakelin has a long history in sales and says he’s always admired Cornell’s artistic vision. When the 5th Street location came available he couldn’t help but jump at the opportunity to open the store. “I had the opportunity to actually meet April a couple of years ago and I admire her artistic vision,” says Wakelin. “I am a little

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2-515 Duncan Ave., Courtenay, BC V9N 2M6

The bouquet dress, a casual charmer. PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

bit of an artist underneath it all so I recognize and admire what she is able to do and how she transfers her vision and look into a business that has become very successful and has grown hugely. So seeing that and knowing the marketplace is out there, knowing that there are a lot of people in the Valley who are devoted to the brand made it an opportunity we couldn’t pass up. This location became available earlier this year so it was just time to jump on this and make it work.”

Although the store opened in spring, it has yet to have an official grand opening. That is because they are working on bringing Cornell herself to the Valley for several days as part of that celebration. “We will be having April herself actually coming out here for a sort of grand opening event,” says Wakelin. “We are looking at some point in October but we haven’t finalized the dates yet. La Cache on 5th Street adds April Cornell’s designs to downtown.”

J • E • W • E • L • L • E • R •S Downtown Courtenay

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250-334-4523


22

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

RETAIL

y t i C p o Brolls on

Downtown record shop makes wnership change but the song ownership remains the same

a

s we reported in a recent issue of About Town, Bop City Records, a mainstay of the Comox Valley music scene, was for sale. After nearly 20 years of business in the alley between 5th and 6th Street, music aficionado Gord Rennie decided to retire and was looking for a buyer for his shop. He found one and as such Bop City marches on. In 2011 new owner and Comox Valley local Bill Massey himself retired from his long-time trade and set out to immerse himself in a life-long passion. Although he’ll admit to not having the knowledge base of Rennie, his love of music runs as deep as anybody’s. He estimates he’s bought 800 albums from Bop City and has had a strong friendship with the man he eventually bought the store from. “I’ve known Gord since

he opened the store store, just as a customer,” says Massey. “He had said to me that he was looking at retiring and I said keep me in mind and I’d be interested in taking over the store. It has worked out perfect.” Massey has been in the Valley since 1988 and worked in Campbell River for 25 years as an electronics technician fixing twoway radios. He has always collected music, however, and when he reached the point where he was ready to move onto another career, Bop City was it. “For 25 years I have had customers coming into (the electronics shop) saying they needed something fixed, which they aren’t always happy about,” says Massey. “But nobody ever comes into (Bop City) and asks you to `fix this stupid thing` if you’re playing Neil Young on the stereo.” The vibe at the store

Bill Massey is the new face of Comox Valley musical mainstay Bop City Records

(Bop City) is a place for people to come ❝ who really like music. It is a place people break into a chat over in the corner and learn things about music, including me. remains original, a constant stream of people coming into talk shop and browse for music. Bop City still sells tickets to live Island events, and is so deeply entrenched in the Valley music scene it can only carry on. “The theme of the store has always been this way,” says Massey. “It’s a place for people to come who really like music. It is a

www.courtenaymuseum.ca

place people break into a chat over in the corner and learn things about music, including me. That is just the way it works and I have always liked that aspect of the place. We want that to continue.” As a music lover, Massey says he is all over the place in terms of taste, from Jazz to Blues to Classic Rock. He does not have plans to change

stage venture further into the online realm, perhaps with one his grandchildren, but driving revenue is not what Bop City is or ever will likely be about. “I don’t make as much in retail, nowhere near as much, but music is something I like and it’s a labour of love. At this stage the sales don’t justify more than having the owner and I don’t really see that changing.” And so the music, the original song of a back alley record shop in Downtown Courtenay, does indeed carry on. Go check it out.

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Courtenay & District

& Palaeontology Centre

the inventory of the store significantly, although the public interest in heavy metal and alternative country (could there be a greater separation in genres?), might warrant some extension of the collection. “I might bring in a little bit more of the alternative country, for example, because I like it myself and people come in and ask. But we have limited space and I am not sure we can shove another CD in here.” Massey says he is well aware of the impact of the internet on the music business. He may at one

PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

See 80 million year old fossils. Explore an ancient sea floor. Discover a fossil of your own. Learn about giant ocean going lizards. Experience the thrill of discovery.

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250-338-6736 - 510 Duncan Ave., Courtenay


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Brazen Sportswear

FD & Interiors

HiTec Screen Printing- All of our chef’s jackets are embroidered here.

They helped us with the design of Billy D’s renovations last year.

Razzamataz Where my little one goes for the best shampoo and grooming.

The Potters Place

My 10 ect picks perf Who: Deana Simkin Where: In our beautiful downtown Courtenay What: Billy D’s Pub and Bistro

Ski Tak Hut You need it ... they got it.

PHOTOS BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

We have great local artists showcasing their wares in this not-forprofit store. I have lots!

Laughing Oyster The place to go for that hard to find book. My son loves it.

Courtenay & District Museum I love the history, and the photo collections are amazing.

Rattan Plus The garden furniture is fantastic. Go upstairs ... you’ll love it!

Codes Bowling Alley Birthday party central ... young and old.

Wagz My dogs wouldn’t shop anywhere else.

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24

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

Calendar of

Hours of Operation Exhibits/ Features / Shows / Home & Garden Arts / Entertainment / Midway / Vendors

Fri Aug 24 Sat Aug 25 Sun Aug 26

12:00 noon - 7:00 7:00 pm - 10:00 10:00 am - 7:00 7:00 pm - 10:00 10:00 am - 4:00

pm pm pm pm pm

Admission Prices General ............................. $10.00

All events Midway/ Beer Gardens All events Midway/Beer Gardens All events

EVENTS

Pancake Breakfast

9:00 am Saturday & Sunday

Children (ages 3 - 10) ......... $5.00 (Children 2 and under FREE) Senior Friday ...................... $5.00 (for senior rates - must present Care Card) Military Sunday.................. $5.00 (for military rates - must present military I.D.) Family ............................... $25.00 (2 adults & 4 children under 18)

Carver Tom Hunt Jr. is one of seven artists involved in the Legacy of Queneesh project at the Comox Valley Art Gallery in Downtown Courtenay.

AUGUST Aug 15 to September 22 Legacy of the Queneesh – CV Art Gallery. This exhibit investigates issues surrounding cultural appropriation and cultural ownership, drawing attention to the importance of context and relationship in presentation, and to the concept of hereditary rights. Here, issues surrounding cultural ‘trespassing’ will be explored. Plans to develop a panel discussion are in process, to which community leaders will be invited from a wide array of sectors. August 15 to September 29 Upstairs at Wah Lee’s ~ Portraits from the C.S. Wing Studio. Travelling exhibit at the Courtenay and District Museum. The exhibition

consists of 30 photographs captured by the Chinese Canadian photographer Chow Shong Wing circa 1910 in the town of Quesnel, BC. It is curated by Faith Moosang and organized by The Quesnel & District Museum and Archives. Advance booking is recommended. August 16 Youth Arts — CV Art Gallery — 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. August 20 Youth Arts — CV Art Gallery — 4 p.m. to 7p.m. Explore the Shore — Courtenay Museum. 12 noon to 3 p.m. Advance booking required. Let the museum’s friendly, wellinformed instructor show you the secrets to finding nudibranchs, chitons, sea stars, clingfish and many more curious critters.

August 21 Fossil Collecting — Browns River — Courtenay Museum. Great for children! 12 noon to 3 p.m. Advance booking required. This is the ultimate field trip for children who love palaeontology. Spend the day digging up REAL fossils at one of the museums favorite dig sites. August 22 Wacky Science – Courtenay Museum. Great for children. 12 noon to 3 p.m. Advance booking required. A day of the wackiest, messiest, most thrilling experiments the museum staff could find! August 23 Youth Arts — CV Art Gallery — 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Fossil Collecting — Trent River — Courtenay Museum.


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

AUGUST Continued from page 24 Great for children. 12 noon to 3 p.m. Advance booking required. This is the ultimate field trip for children who love palaeontology. Spend the day digging up REAL fossils at one of the museums favorite dig sites. August 24 Dinosaur Discovery – Courtenay Museum. Great for kids. 12 noon to 3 p.m. Advance booking required. Building a dinosaur model and participating in a mock dino dig are highlights of this exciting class! August 25 2002 Highland Grad Class Reunion — Sid Williams Theatre for tickets. Doors open and Cocktails at 6 p.m., dinner at 7 p.m. Dancing to follow till 1 a.m. August 27 Youth Arts — CV Art Gallery — 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. August 30 Youth Arts — CV Art Gallery — 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.

SEPTEMBER September 2 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery September 11 Toopy + Binoo — Sid Williams Theatre — 3:30 and 6:30 p.m. — Toopy and Binoo’s unpredictable adventures inspire children to push their own limits! Toopy and Binoo and the Marshmallow Moon is a fairy-tale for our times; it incorporates music, theatre, dance, puppetry and innovative multimedia technology to weave a story that will tickle the imagination of the entire family! Sept 16 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery Sept 21 Two Kids, One Hall – Sid Williams Theatre 8pm. The chemistry between the two comedians comes out best when they share the stage during moments throughout the show. Thompson and McDonald feed off each other with ease, often completing each other’s thoughts.

Sept 28 The Legendary Platters and Ink Spots – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30pm. Back by popular demand! The Legendary Platters and the The Ink Spots have a reputation of catering to the loves of good music. Both groups sing standards that are known around the world. An Evening with The Legendary Platters and The Ink Spots will be an unforgettable memory. Sept 28 to November 3 Screen Printing: Ad, Art or Alchemy — CV Art Gallery — Comox Valley based screen printer Andy MacDougall — presents a compendium of artworks from his collection and on loan from private collections (regional to international) based on the process of serigraph print making. Included in this exhibit are artworks by First Nations artists, contemporary visual arts, rock posters, t-shirts, textile art, snowboards, and skateboards. This show examines the vast world of screen printing and the integration and application of this art form into everyday life while challenging viewers to question definitions of art and how it is produced. Training work-

LET ’S GO

! N G I O B WL Socialize, Exercise, Make New Friends!

September 29 An Evening with Jennifer Warnes – Sid Williams Theatre — 7:30 p.m. Jennifer Warnes is one of the most renowned singers of our time, whose voice is one of the loveliest instruments in contemporary music. As a solo artist or a duet partner, on albums or in movies, Warnes sings it straight from the heart. Her voice is pure. The emotions it conveys are pure, too. Sept 29 to November 3 Give Me The Splendid Sun – CV Art Gallery.— An exhibit of Artist Trading Cards — based on the theme of the sun; warmth, sunny holidays, destinations, astronomy, astrophysics, mythology and/or religion, happy summer memories, ripening crops and the harvest, use your imagination ... Sept 30 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery

OCTOBER October 4 - 13 Courtenay Little Theatre

presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:00 p.m. reception ~ 8 p.m. Showtime WINNER! 2 Tony and Drama Desk Awards, 2008 WINNER! BEST NEW COMEDY Laurence Olivier Award, 2007 Mix a Hitchcock masterpiece with a juicy spy novel, add a dash of Monty Python and you have a fast-paced whodunit with the magic of live theatre! October 6 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. Discover Art Saturdays – CV Art Gallery 2-4 p.m. October 7 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 2:00 p.m. October 8 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. October 9 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. October 10 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid

All Leagues - Starts Tues., Sept. 4th

Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. October 11 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. October 12 Courtenay Little Theatre presents The 39 Steps – Sid Williams Theatre 7:30 p.m. October 14 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery October 27 Discover Art Saturdays — CV Art Gallery 2 to 4 p.m. October 28 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery

NOVEMBER November 11 TIFF Film Series – CV Art Gallery November 16 CV Art Gallery Christmas Craft Fair opening: 10 a.m. Handmade and locally created original pottery, glass, wood, fabric, jewellery, ornaments, speciality foods, stocking stuffers and much more.

GOLDEN AGE LADIES MIXED AND YOUTH

BIRTHDAY PARTIES - Saturdays/Sundays SCHOOL GROUP - by Reservation KOSMIC BOWLING - Weekends

OPEN

FRIDAY: - Noon to 10 - Kosmic: 6 to 10 S SATURDAY: - 1 to 10 - Kosmic: all day SUNDAY: - 1 to 6 - Kosmic: all day MONDAY: - 3 to 6 After School Bowling TUES/WED/THURS: - Call for times

BOWLING

No One Too Young Or Too Old! The Coffee Is Always On And Fresh!

shops, school tours and an artist talk will form the extensions of this show.

25

Whether you’re a high roller, a veteran or new to bowling, Code’s Country Lanes has a league for you! Look forward to holiday cheer, a year end party, prizes and some new friends - not to forget the bowling, of course!

EVERYONE Welcome!

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Find us on Facebook!


26

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

COMMUNITY

world of wonder A v

alley residents can pack the final days of summer full off fun by visiting the Courtenay tenay and District Museum. eum. The museum hostss a number of day camps for kids, as well as tours, events and exhibits for the whole family. Now on its summer operating schedule, the Courtenay and District Museum is open Monday to Saturday from 10:00 to 5:00 and Sundays from 12:00 to 4:00 until Labour Day. As always, members visit free. The Courtenay and District Museum will host its ever-popular Junior Paleontology Week August 13-17. The handson, interactive learning program enables kids to temporarily live the life of a paleontologist; after spending three days learning about the prehistoric Comox Valley marine life, students will embark on a two-day fossil excavation at a local river. Kids will learn how to properly collect, prepare, preserve, mold and cast fossils, and the week will culminate in each child creating their own paleontology display. The day camps run between noon and 3 p.m. throughout the week and cost $130 per child; parents are expected to provide transportation and a lunch. Prospective participants are encouraged to secure a spot soon, as enrollment is limited to eight kids. For those interested in a briefer sampling of the archeological experience, the Courtenay and District Museum also offers a num-

ber of day camps geared for kids aged 5 – 12. The four programs hosted within the Museum cost $28 each. The Museum’s Wacky Science day camp, wherein participants conduct a collection of the weirdest and wildest by Caitlin McKinnon

experiments, is back by popular demand and will be held on August 22. Kids seeking hands-on archaeological experience can also build a dinosaur model and partake in a mock dig during a Dinosaur Discovery day camp held August 25. The Museum also offers day camps that incorporate a field trip component; each costs $28 and requires parents to provide transportation to and from trip sites. Those with an interest in marine biology will want to participate in Explore the Shore, a funfilled seaside excursion to find nudibranchs, chitons, sea stars, cling stars and many more marine critters. Children can also spend the day digging up fossils at either Browns or Trent rivers; an excursion to Browns River will be held August 21, while a dig at the Trent River takes place August 23. Families with kids returning to school can share a final summertime adventure together by registering for one of the Courtenay and District Museum’s much-loved fossil tours. After a brief lecture and tour of the museum exhibit gallery, participants will dig for

their own fossils at the Puntledge River. Any fossils found during the tour are the property of participants, although you may be asked to donate the fossil to the museum collection (with your name attached) if the species is of scientific value. Tours are three hours long and begin at 9:00 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. daily; participants are expected to supply their own transportation to and from dig sites. The tour costs $25 per adult. Students and seniors pay $20, and children under 12 are charged $15; families (two adults and up to three children) pay a group rate of $75. Members are entitled to a 15% discount. The Courtenay and District Museum will also be featuring a number of in-house exhibits and events as fall rolls in. Most significantly, the museum will host Upstairs with Wah Lee until September 29. The travelling exhibit is a collection of 30 photographs captured by ChineseCanadian photographer Chow Shong Wing circa 1910 in intensely multicultural Quesnel, BC. Chow Shong Wing was Quesnel’s first professional photographer, and if his portraits are any indication, wellacquainted with the town’s Chinese-Canadian and First Nations’ communities. Reflecting the socioeconomic and religious forces driving assimilation in then-young BC, the exhibit is reputed to speak profoundly of the

Take one more big bite of summer at the Courtenay Museum acculturation at work in Quesnel. Although of special interest to members of the Chinese-Canadian and First Nations’ communi-

ties, the Courtenay and District Museum predicts the exhibit will appeal to all members of the general public.

PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

For more information, drop by the Courtenay and District Museum at 360 Cliffe Ave., or call (250)334-0686.

Island s tyle sports and fashions

VISIT US TODAY FOR GUYS & GALS

BACK TO SCHOOL & FALL FASHIONS 333 FIFTH ST., COURTENAY • PH. 250-338-8844

www.skiandsurf.ca


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

27

ADVERTISER DIRECTORY BOOKSTORES Laughing Oyster . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 BUTCHER SHOP Butcher’s Block Meats . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 CHILDRENS CLOTHING & ACCESSORIES Kradles Baby Boutique . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 DELICATESSEN Runge’s Deli . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 ELECTRONICS Visual Sound . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 EVENTS Comox Valley Exhibition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 FASHIONS - Men’s • Women’s Be Clothing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Robert A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 Secret Drawers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Sharons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 FITNESS Codes Country Lanes Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Freedom Now Yoga . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 FLORIST Courtenay 5th Street Florist . . . . . . . . . . . 22 FURNITURE McConochie’s Furniture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Tab Imports . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 GROCERIES/HEALTH FOODS Edible Island . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 Thrifty Foods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 HOME & GIFTS Beyond the Kitchen Door . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Romance Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 The Tea Centre . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 JEWELLERS Francis Jewellers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12

POLITICAL REPRESENTATIVES Don McRae . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 REAL ESTATE Coast Realty Group (Comox Valley) Ltd . . 30

Graham’s Jewellers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 RESTAURANTS/CAFÉS MUSIC Bop City Records . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 MUSEUM Courtenay & District Museum . . . . . . . . . . 22

Atlas Café . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9

Early Bird Cafe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15

SHOES

Michael’s Off Main . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Searle’s Shoes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1

Yamato . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Shoebiz . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

Union Street Grill and Grotto . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Zocalo Cafe & Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 SERVICES

Billy D’s . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18

Hi Tec Brazenwear Sportswear . . . . . . . . . . 9

Cardero Coffee & Tea . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3

Piercy’s-Mt. Washington Funeral Home. . . 20

Delicados . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28

Shawnna Karras R.M.T. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

SPORTS Ski & Surf . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 THEATRES Sid Williams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 TOY STORE Whales Tale Toys. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

DOWNTOWN a taste of

Great Foo Friendly S d BREAKFAS ervice T Lunch • Ch ALL DAY eesecake OPEN 7 DA Mon. - Sat. YS A WEEK 8am Sunday 8a - 2:30pm; m - 2pm

250-334-

Michael’s Off Main

Delicious diversity hardly begins to describe the eateries in Downtown Courtenay. From steaming espresso and fresh-squeezed juices, gourmet pizzas to tempura and teriyaki, you’ll find fabulous fare sure to tempt everyone’s tastebuds.

ATLAS CAFÉ

MICHAEL’S OFF MAIN

The café serves breakfast, lunch and dinner with a global flair – “a little something for everyone” featuring freshbaked goodies, espresso and fruit juices. Licensed. 250 Sixth St. Phone: 250-338-9838. www.atlascafe.ca

“Life is uncertain, eat dessert first!” Enjoy breakfast all day and lunch 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Sunday 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Licensed. 355-Fourth St.

BILLY D’s

In business since 1969, Runge’s offers sandwiches, cold beverages and sweets to go, plus all the fixings for your picnic – sliced meats, cheeses, potato salad and more. Open 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday at 347 Fourth St. Phone: 250-338-8621.

Check out www.billydspub.com for our fabulous daily specials. We are located downtown at 268 Fifth Street. We serve mountains of nachos, colossal platters and everything else your appetite may desire. With our huge portions and low prices you won’t find a better deal. Phone: 250-334-8811.

CARDERO COFFEE AND TEA CO. Find coffee, tea, light lunches, ice cream, blended drinks, smoothies, plus an internet lounge. Open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Located at 232 Fifth Street. Phone: 250-338-2519.

DELICADO’S SOUTHWESTERN CAFÉ It’s a funky, high energy restaurant/deli that screams personality, which translates into a fun and exciting atmosphere at Delicado’s. Eye-catching decor, excellent service, great music and wholesome, reasonably priced food have made Delicado’s famous. In the Courtyard on the corner of 5th and Cliffe. Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Phone: 250-338-8885.

EARLY BIRD CAFÉ Breakfast served all day. Daily homemade soup and sandwich specials. Also burgers, wraps and salads. Monday to Friday 6 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Saturday, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. 307-Fourth St.; Sunday breakfast buffet, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Phone 250-897-7025.

LIFE IS UNCERTAIN - EAT DESSERT FIRST

Best Quality Best Price Best Sushi

JAPANESE RESTAURANT

YAMATO

in town!

Phone 250-334-2071

Corner of Cliffe and 6th Street, Courtenay 250-334-2025 www.cvyamato.com

RUNGE’S IMPORTS & DELICATESSEN

UNION STREET GRILL & GROTTO Open every day at 9am. Licensed. Families Welcome. The Grill ~ A unique downtown restaurant serving fresh West Coast foods with an innovative, jazzy atmosphere. Come and enjoy our weekend brunches. The Grotto ~ A great place to eat, meet and drink. Breakfast, lunch, snacks, tapas. Phone 250-897-0081

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71 355 - 4th Downtown Street Courtenay

Live Music

Original art and

photographs

Full Breakfast • Lunch Specials • Dinner • Licensed Mon - Wed, 7am - 5:30pm • Thurs, 7am - 9pm • Fri & Sat, 7am - 10pm • Sun, 8am - 5pm

YAMATO This fully licensed Japanese restaurant features a wide menu selection including sushi, teriyaki and tempura. Debit card and major credit cards accepted. Corner of Cliffe Avenue and Sixth Street. Phone: 250-334-2025

ZOCALO CAFÉ AND GALLERY Featuring fresh, delicious food, specialty coffees and teas, café events, local art, wireless internet and more. Licensed. Open Mon. – Wed. 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Thursday 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Fri. & Sat. 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 208A Fifth St. Phone 250-331-0933.

A Southwestern Café

Our Food is prepared fresh daily on the premises serving a delicious variety of

flavourful, colourful and healthy southwestern food BIGGEST Licenced Patio on 5th St. In the Cour tyard on the Corner of 5th & Cliffe | 250.338.8885 Parking behind building by Central Builders

www.delicados-deli.com


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

s e c a l a c es P

& F Heart-Drum-Beat Taoist Yoga and Healing Services is owned by Arrow Gonsalves at 625 Cliffe Ave. (in the Tulio’s plaza). It is a developmental training method combining yoga with workshop instruction.

Functional Massage Therapy, owned by Leslie Clisby, is located at #2-345 6th St. Consultations are complimentary. Leslie’s background includes being a member of the Canadian Sports Massage Therapy Association and has worked with rugby and hockey athletes.

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Come to Canada’s C Curtain Corner, located at 420 Fitzgerald Ave., owned by Audrey and Wayne Baxter, for the newest looks in window fashions, awnings, screens, repairs and cleaning — all on display in their showroom. PHOTOS BY DONNA LAFONTAINE

Feel Beautiful. Live Beautiful and Be Beautiful is the motto at the new La Cache by April Cornell store owned by Stephen Wakelin, Audrie Lankhof, manager and Jill Moran, sales and marketing, located at 244 5th Street. Charming clothing for infants, girls and ladies and home décor.

New to Downtown Courtenay is Jet Stream Travel Fashions, located at 435 5th St., Courtenay. Owner Polly Fox carries a wide variety of women’s travel and everyday apparel with all the accessories. Don’t forget the luggage accessories and something to help with the jetlag.


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

The top ten things you should know about buying in the Comox Valley: 1. Call Coast Realty Group, we will take care of the other nine.

Charlotte Batchelor

Martin Bridges

Chris Flynn

Errol Flynn

Ray Francis

Patrick Guinan

Becky Hagan

Barry McDonald

Sue McKitrick

Heather Mossauer

Rob Phillips

Kevin Reid

Heather Sanson

Sylvie Schroeder

Tracy Hopkins

Don Hughes

John Kalhous

Donna Tuele

Marianne Woodrow

Mark Wyatt

Andrena Koch-Schulte

Don Luckett

Jennifer Chin

Travis Stevenson Managing Broker

Property Management

625 England Avenue Courtenay, BC V9N 2N5

Phone: 250-897-3999 Toll-free: 800-715-3999

www.coastrealty.com

Email: coastcv@coastrealty.com


ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

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RETAIL

FROM LIVE MUSIC TO DISCOUNT MARTINIS, NIGHTLIFE IS PICKING UP DOWNTOWN

f

or Comox Valley residents who are more nocturnal than early birds, there’s plenty to do in Downtown Courtenay. If you’re looking for night time adventure that involves good food & drink, great conversation by or creative stimuMiranda lation, there’s Post no need to leave town. Courtenay businesses have come up with some pretty fabulous night time activities. Here’s a survey of what to do with your twilight hours.

e t i n u s l w o t h g i N

For the music fan Each week, Zocalo hosts touring local and Canadian musical acts Thursday through Saturday. Drop by for a pint of locally brewed beer from Surgenor Brewing Company while munching on a late night snack. Visiting musicians play everything from rock to country, folk to jazz at the intimate café. To see who’s coming to Zocalo next visit the event calendar on their website, www.zocalocafe.ca/. For the music nerd in your life (look in the mirror, I know that’s you) Billy D’s Bistro & Pub hosts a weekly music trivia night. Test your knowledge of music through the decades while sampling a martini from their 55-strong martini list. Be there by 8:30 on Wednesday nights to put your music knowledge to the test for a variety of cool prizes.

For the social butterfly The Union Street Grill and Grotto offer two different rooms and vibes with one great menu. According to Union Street’s Daniel Duncan,

Beer tastes better with a smile, especially in Downtown Courtenay. they’ve started hosting an exciting night aimed at attracting the Comox Valley’s social butterflies. Each Thursday the Grotto hosts Neighborhood Night where Tapas and Sangria are on special. While you’re at Union Street, check out local rotating art exhibits. Currently Union Street features the work of Daniel Kooman, a Comox Valley based photographer. Billy D’s also hosts a ladies’ night every Saturday starting at 8pm called Mini-Martini Madness. Ladies can sample little versions of Billy D’s famous martinis for nearly half off.

Ladies also receive 25% off their food bill. Don’t worry, men are welcome too.

For the bookworm Story time isn’t limited to youngsters at the public library. According to Evelyn Gillespie of Laughing Oyster Books, they host regular book club nights at Zocalo Cafe in the fall. During the book club night, Valley residents can meet other bookish peers, sip a coffee or beer while listening to the Laughing Oyster staff’s latest literature recommendations. Gillespie also notes that

PHOTO BY ERIN HALUSCHAK

Laughing Oyster often works with the Courtenay Public Library to organize author events, some of which can be in the evening. For more information on which scribes may be visiting Courtenay in the near future, contact Evelyn at 250334-2511.

For the nocturnal cook Courtenay is developing quite a reputation as a foodie destination. We all know that the weekly local farmer’s market is one of the best on the island and we have great local grocery stores like Edible Island and Thrifty’s,

but what to do with your local fare once you’ve run out of recipe ideas? For the last eight years, Beyond The Kitchen Door has been expanding palettes and helping aspiring chefs convert their groceries into culinary classics during their evening cooking classes. “Beyond the Door’s cooking classes are designed to bring chefs, local producers and experts together to help participants experience new ingredients, techniques and flavours,” explained Beyond the Kitchen Door’s Sue Smith. “Class size is limited to 10 so all students can get the most out of each culinary experience.” From September to June, Smith and her team invite local and Vancouver Island chefs to the 5th Street store to teach interesting classes such as Delete the Wheat, Sensational Summer Salads and Chicken Connoisseur. Sue is currently putting together the fall schedule of cooking classes so drop by Beyond the Kitchen Door (274B 5th Street) to ask questions or check out past class schedules. Have you always wanted to try vegan food but are a bit shy? Zen Zero Juice Fountain just completed a successful monthly series of raw food potlucks. On the fourth Sunday of each month, Zen Zero hosts a 5pm dinner followed by a movie or documentary related to healthy living. No clue what raw food preparation involves? Starting in September, Zen Zero will educate curious Courtenay vegetarians and vegans by offering raw food ‘un-cooking’ classes. For more information contact Marussia at Zen Zero: 250-3384571.


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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

ABOUT TOWN

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August 15, 2012