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blvdmag.ca MAY 2013

// Fabulous photographers // Budding aquaponics // BC oysters // Fashion-forward gents // Dancing Destrooper // Retro ride rebirths

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may May 2013 Issue 05, Volume XXIl



26 get hooked on aquaponics By Alisa Gordaneer






photos by This year’s six winners victoria’s men of fashion By Lia Crowe

COLUMNS 14 HAWTHORN Do it for the suffragettes: don’t forget to vote By Tom Hawthorn 16

STATE OF THE ARTS Hybrid theatres take centre stage By Alisa Gordaneer



36 60

FRONT ROW Highland Games; David Blackwood; Miss Saigon and more By Robert Moyes

91 PERSONAL FINANCE Talking with Tess: Elizabeth Cull, Dig This By Tess van Straaten

28 creative minds Pas de deux with Paul Destrooper By Garth von Buchholz


FOOD & WINE Be bold and take that first oyster slurp By Cinda Chavich and Sharon McLean






HOT PROPERTIES A builder shares his beautiful view By Carolyn Heiman BEFORE AND AFTER New life for a garden shed By Sarah MacNeill

HEALTH & WELLNESS Crank that metabolism By Shannon Moneo

80 TRAVEL FAR From Gold Rush to Tourist Rush in Alaska By Robert Moyes

car culture Retro chic rides By Stuart Eastwood


WRY EYE An ode to chickens By Anne Mullens


SECRETS & LIVES Barrie Agar, gardener By Shannon Moneo

On our cover: The best way to get fresh? Flowers, of course.


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Publisher Geoff Wilcox Creative Director Sarah Reid Editor Kate Lautens Fashion Editor Lia Crowe Production Coordinator Pip Knott Advertising Pat Brindle Vicki Clark Corlie Sleen Geoff Wilcox Marketplace Programs Scott Simmons Business Manager Janet Dessureault Contributing Writers Cinda Chavich, Darryl Gittins, Pamela Durkin, Alisa Gordaneer, Tom Hawthorn, Carolyn Heiman, Anna Kemp, Lauren Kramer, Sarah MacNeill, Sharon McLean, Shannon Moneo, Katherine Palmer Gordon, Robert Moyes, Tess van Straaten Contributing Photographers Dean Azim, Vince Klassen, Gary McKinstry, Leanna Rathkelly


No longer a state of mind.

Subscribe Enjoy the convenience of Boulevard delivered to your door each month by subscribing online at blvdmag.ca or email subscribe@blvdmag.ca Advertise Boulevard Magazine is Victoria’s leading lifestyle magazine, celebrating 23 years of publishing in Greater Victoria. To advertise or to learn more about advertising opportunities please send us an email at info@blvdmag.ca






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Victoria Boulevard ÂŽ is a registered trademark of Boulevard Lifestyles Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the publisher's written permission. Ideas and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of Boulevard Lifestyles Inc. or its afiliates; no official endorsement should be inferred. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents, both implied or assumed, of any advertisement in this publication. Printed in Canada. Canada Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement #42109519. $5.95

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Illustrator Shelley Davies has been creating the art for our Wry Eye column for a few years now. Her background is in film and animation, but editorial illustration has kept her busy, with photography and blogging (shelleysdavies.com) in hot pursuit of any free time she has available. Pip Knott is a visual communication designer who moved to Victoria after graduating from the Graphic Design degree program at Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo. She started working for Boulevard magazine in January as the production coordinator, and does freelance design and illustration on the side. This month, Pip put her Wacom Tablet to good use to illustrate “Hooked on Aquaponics” and the new Talking with Tess finance column. robert moyes is a local author

and arts writer who occasionally slips the leash and travels to distant ports of call (which he then writes about). His trip to Alaska was his first experience on a cruise ship, and the numerous onboard pleasures were neatly complemented by Alaska’s rugged beauty. “There were bears, glaciers, and we did a dry suit snorkel,” he says. “Notwithstanding a two-dimensional encounter with Sarah Palin, I found most Alaskans charming and larger than life. I’d happily go again.” Photographer Leanna Rathkelly jokes that they “traded snow for snowdrops” after living in Whistler for 26 years. “Now we spend weekends hiking with the pooch and learning ocean sports, while our skis gather dust,” she says. She loves photographing homes on the Island, as she and her husband are on the lookout for their own place to buy. She daydreams about her future kitchen overlooking a Victorian garden with an ocean view. Rathkelly has collaborated with creative art directors and models to produce imagery for tourism agencies, magazines, Getty Images and for her own stock library, Travelling Light Photography. 11


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EDITOR’S LETTER In mid-January, I received an offer I couldn’t refuse. When I asked my partner to guess what job Boulevard magazine wanted to give me, he joked, “What, are they going to make you editorin-chief?” And I said, “Actually, yes.” A month later, I was in the Boulevard office, still pinching myself to make sure I wasn’t imagining it. The months since have passed in a blur of planning, editing, writing, rewriting, re-editing, proofing and revamping entire stories at the last minute. In short: amazing. It always seemed like a distant dream to be an editor of a magazine, and I am so grateful to the staff, writers and photographers alike — and I hope I can add readers to that list, too — for making the transition so comfortable and smooth. Of course, I have big shoes to fill: following the performance of Anne Mullens and Vivian Smith, at the helm of Boulevard for the last four years, is no easy feat. I can’t thank Anne enough for taking me under her wing and then, quite recently, pushing me out of the nest and forcing me to fly (perhaps more like a flapping pigeon than a soaring eagle at the moment). This issue is crammed with all things fresh, from the new aquaponics system at Mason Street City Farm (page 26) to the fashion-forward men of Victoria (page 36). Food & Wine has raw oysters for slurping (very fresh), and Car Culture shares new takes on old classics. We’ve also revamped Personal Finance with the new Talking with Tess column. A fresh ballet from Ballet Victoria’s Paul Destrooper is coming this month, and we have a behind-the-scenes look at this innovative, passionate dancer and his talented company (page 18). Plus, we’ve reached our 22nd year of the annual Photos By contest, and with nearly 200 entries to choose from, we had a tough time picking our favourites. Congratulations to David Donaldson, Patrick Kennedy, Christine McAuley, Ken Miner, Mark Nicol and Cassidy Nunn, this year’s winners. These photographers prove that everything from a young foal to an old truck can tell a story. See page 28 for the winning photos. A changeover like this one is a great time to reassess content, so that’s exactly what we’re doing. What do you love? What do you skip over? We want your honest opinions in our reader survey. (Come on, help me turn into an eagle here!) Not convinced? Maybe a two-night trip for two to Tofino’s Wickanninish Inn will help. All participants will be entered into a draw to win this prize, worth $1,486. Find the survey at blvdmag.ca. Click on the Take Survey link and give us a hand. Kate Lautens, Editor


YOUR LETTERS RECYCLING WOES HIT THE MARK I have to say that I got a really good belly laugh out of Tom Hawthorn’s article on learning new things and the complexities of recycling and separating our waste. I have exactly the same issues … but I must say that I am doing my best and think that it should result in something good for society. Boulevard magazine has a nice feel to it now, after having been away from it for some time. Good on you for that. Deryk Houston

JUST THIS ONCE, DON’T ANSWER IT! Boy, do I agree with Lauren Kramer, who wrote “The Desperate Wife of a Cell Phone Addict Has a Message for Him” (March)! It disturbs me to see a trio of young people walking down the road together and all three heads are down, their eyes glued to their communications devices. Why be together at all if you aren’t interacting? I’m a business owner who doesn’t even own a cell phone. The three weeks I tried one drove me nuts and I was overjoyed to be rid of it. Barbara McDonell

ONE WARTY PARTY You may remember Mariah, the warty yellow lab Valerie Rolfe wrote about in last August’s Wry Eye: I thought you’d enjoy this — we never imagined Mariah would make it to 15. All three dogs enjoyed a “cake” of sardines, bread and salmon skin (with a piece of cheese holding up the candle)! Valerie Rolfe


“Rah, Rah for Raw Food” (March) indicated humans have 99.4 per cent of our genes in common with chimpanzees. A savvy reader pointed out that the amount of shared gene expression between chimps and humans is under fierce debate, with recent studies finding anywhere from 94 per cent to 98.8 per cent of expressed genes in common between the two species.

Readers Weigh in OnLine

Premier Wines: Hey Guys, Congratulations on a great product and for supporting local economy and printing in BC!! Handmade with Love by Blissbydeb: Awesome magazine and cover photo! Beauty & Style by Erin Bradley: Great issue :) @RealEstateSTACK LOVING the new look, fresh, young, modern!!! @KilaNalu Yay! So excited to find you when I arrived home #BLVDJoy! @gotJamal28 Loved your article on David Black this month! @webmeisterBud mmMMmm . . . does your latest issue also *taste* like asparagus if you nibble on the pages, @BoulevardMag? =)

We welcome your letters: editor@blvdmag.ca or visit us on Facebook, and on Twitter @BoulevardMag. 13

By Tom Hawthorn

photo by vince klassen

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Vote, gosh darnit!

On May 14, don’t forget to vote A century ago, a delegation of women gathered in Victoria to argue for the right to vote. On Valentine’s Day, 1913, the 72 women submitted to the premier a petition with 10,000 signatures, a rebuff to his assertion that the women of British Columbia were uninterested in the franchise. Premier Richard McBride listened to the presentation, but remained noncommittal. In the end, he refused to support the measure. A private member’s bill was introduced to the Legislature, only to be defeated. In those tumultuous days, newspapers were filled with accounts of the suffragettes’ campaign. Nellie McClung, who would later make Victoria her home, turned the male chauvinist argument on its head by proposing men be barred from the polls. “Man is made for something higher and better than voting,” she said. “Men were made to support families. What is a home without a bank account?” Some suffragettes resorted to violence. In Britain, extraordinary measures were implemented to protect the King on public occasions. In June, London suffragette Emily Davison suffered fatal injuries while trying to grab the King’s horse during the Epsom Derby. Her tombstone carried the suffragette slogan, “Deeds not words,” a martyr to the cause. THE SUFFRAGETTES SUCCEED AT LAST Another three years would pass before BC’s male voters approved women’s suffrage in a referendum. Finally, on April 5, 1917, the white women of BC were awarded the franchise. (The last of the province’s racial restrictions were not lifted until 1949.) Less than 10 months later, Mary Ellen Smith, a copper

miner’s daughter from England who immigrated to Victoria, was elected to the legislature, succeeding her late husband, also a miner. While representing a Vancouver riding, she became the first female cabinet minister and the first female Speaker in the entire British Empire. Those women who fought so hard and so long for the vote a century ago would undoubtedly be pleased to see a woman occupying the premier’s office today. But I can only imagine their despair if they learned that only about half of citizens today — men and women alike — bother to vote. Once every four years, the noisy and colourful jamboree that is American politics results in the election of a president. We have our own quadrennial ritual here in BC. The province was the first in Canada to adopt a set voting date, grafting a rigid republican idea onto the fluid British parliamentary system. So, for many years, we have known we are to go to the polls on May 14. Even with all that advance notice, it is expected fewer of us than ever will actually make the effort. Turnout has been on a precipitous drop, from 58 per cent in 2005 to just half of eligible voters taking part in 2009. Despite the efforts of the non-partisan Elections BC to remind us, including radio spots by popular former Vancouver Canucks forward Stan Smyl, the turnout this month will almost certainly dip below 50 per cent. What does that say about democracy?


Those women

“We’ve lost a sense of civic duty,” who fought so says Norman Ruff, a professor emeritus hard and so at the University of Victoria. “People long for the of my generation, we had a sense that one should go out and vote.” Ruff vote a century has examined the numbers, seeing ago would unsettling evidence that those who undoubtedly have not been voting as young adults are also staying away from the polls be pleased to even as they become older. see a woman Born in Barking, England, Ruff was occupying a recent arrival in this country when the premier’s curiosity led him to attend a rally for Prime Minister John Diefenbaker office today. during the 1962 campaign. “The Chief” expertly turned a drunken heckler’s taunts to his advantage. That introduction to Canadian politics sent Ruff on his path to being an immigrant expert in a field that in those days was mostly ignored. At least a half-dozen of Ruff’s students have gone on to become ministers of the Crown here in BC. A possible solution to the precipitous decline in voter turnout: register high school students at age 16. If youth are engaged in the process early, they might continue to be engaged as they age. Voting is a habit and we shouldn’t let an essential right fade into irrelevance through neglect. Too many fought too long for the franchise to be disregarded. See you at the polls. Tom Hawthorn is a freelance author, newspaper and magazine writer who lives in Victoria. 15

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All the world may be a stage, but when it comes to available stages in Victoria, it seems as though there can never be enough. We have big performance halls, like the McPherson and Royal theatres, with seating for hundreds. And we have mid-sized theatres, like the Belfry, Langham Court, and the Phoenix Theatre at the University of Victoria. Then there are smaller venues, like the Metro Studio and Theatre Inconnu’s Fernwood space. Overall, we have a good range of sizes and styles, from plush-seated splendour to black-box grittiness. However, as Geoffrey Ewert, development director for the Blue Bridge Repertory Theatre company points out, “these spaces are often running at full capacity, so there’s definitely a need for another space.” And if you ask me, what we need in particular is a hybrid kind of space, the small-but-perfect little theatre where performances can still feel intimate, but audiences don’t have to perch on folding wooden chairs. Maybe I’m getting old, but an evening at the theatre should feel more like a treat than an invitation to future physiotherapy.

Re-imagining the Roxy Fortunately, there are several new and lesser-known venues that fit the bill, and in a stylish, exciting, and even thoroughly comfortable way. One of those is the old Roxy Cinema on Quadra, which Blue Bridge bought last February for $965,000. The iconic Roxy, long a movie theatre, will still show movies — Blue Bridge is raising funds for a digital projection system — but it’ll be renovated to accommodate live performances as well. (Right now, it’s running that old theatre favourite, a “seat sale.” For $500, your name gets inscribed on a plaque on a presumably comfy seat in the renovated auditorium.)

The renovations at the Roxy point to a larger revitalization, too. “Our future vision is for the Roxy Theatre to be a space that’s a cultural hub for early career artists in Victoria,” says Ewert. In addition to three Blue Bridge productions each year, the company plans to let other groups use the space for dance, theatre and even multimedia performances. But that’s not the only new hybrid space in town. The recently opened David Foster Foundation Theatre at the Oak Bay Beach Hotel holds 96 to 160 audience members for dinner theatre, weekly movie nights, and other performances — and has an art gallery area as well, with art supplied by Winchester Galleries. Chris Morash, the marketing manager for the hotel, says the theatre is available to any group that wants to book it, and he expects to see more shows there in the fall. In the meantime, audiences can check the hotel’s website for information about weekly dinner-and-a-movie events (with a full bar and concession) and upcoming dinner theatre productions.

Elk Lake’s secret gem One of the most plush little theatres in town is also one of the most accessible to performing arts groups — but it’s somewhat of a hidden gem. The theatre at the Berwick House Retirement Community, on Elk Lake Drive in Royal Oak, seats 120 audience members in an exquisite art deco-inspired space. Wendy Thomas, Berwick’s acting recreation manager, told me local performance groups are invited to put on shows there without having to pay rent — a huge benefit, especially for companies that are just starting out. In exchange, the retirement community reserves 40 seats for its residents to watch the show, and the performers can choose to sell (or give away) the rest of the tickets. The happy result is that residents get a huge range of entertainment, and performers get a high-quality venue with lighting and sound systems set up by UVic’s theatre department. Audiences from Victoria and Saanich get to enjoy performances in a comfortable, professional-quality venue without having to go downtown. Kaleidoscope Theatre’s family festival took place there back in February, and the Peninsula Players community theatre group also uses the space. Local actor and director Kate Rubin recently used Berwick’s facility for a performance by her theatre school and says she was pleased with the quality of the venue, especially since sharing the performance with residents created a feeling of community. It helps small theatre companies to have a venue like this, she adds. “With funding cuts, it’s getting so challenging to put on shows,” says Rubin. “To keep going, you have to get innovative.” It’s definitely innovative. I applaud each of these organizations for making new theatre spaces available to local theatre companies of all sorts. This innovation benefits everyone. The first Blue Bridge production at the Roxy happens in the fall. In the meantime, watch for its version of Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya this June at the McPherson. See oakbaybeachhotel.com for programming information there, and berwickretirement.com for a calendar of events there.



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Company: Paul Destrooper leads Ballet Victoria in front of and behind the curtain  by Garth von Buchholz  photography by dean azim

Paul Destrooper stands on the stage at the McPherson Playhouse dressed in a dashing white costume with a red sash. It is a Friday afternoon in late March and it’s the dress rehearsal for Ballet Victoria’s third show of the season, The Secret Garden. With less than four hours to opening night curtain, Destrooper is all business.



“I was always pretty good at picking up things, but I could not pick up ballet to save my life.�

Destrooper has created 30 new dances in six years with Ballet Victoria. 20

As artistic director, executive director, frequent choreographer and a principal dancer with the ballet company, he has a lot riding on his athletic shoulders. The tall, patrician-looking dancer — who looks 10 years younger than his 45 years — is as taut as a dancer’s laces as he puts the final polish on the lighting cues, the sound cues, and the company’s 10 dancers’ moves. Tonight’s performance includes three short pieces: the remount of the company’s critically praised The Secret Garden, which Destrooper choreographed and premiered in 2009, as well as two short works from guest choreographers. Destrooper rehearses a scene from the classical ballet Le Corsaire with principal dancer Andrea Bayne — his partner in dance and in real life — and new company dancer Matthew Cluff. Then they practice their bows. Although the acquisition of the talented, upand-comer Cluff to the 10-year-old company has been garnering recent praise, it is Destrooper himself who should take the deepest bow. At the helm of Ballet Victoria since 2007, he is not only a talented dancer and administrator but also one of the region’s leading creators of new ballets, both short and full-length. His prodigious output of four to five ballets per season has garnered the company a devoted core audience. Including the 2012-13 repertoire, Destrooper has created 30 new dances for BV in his six years in Victoria. “Remarkably, this company has survived in a smaller city despite challenging economic times,” says reviewer Adrian Chamberlain of the Victoria Times Colonist. “That Ballet Victoria

does so with such verve and artistry is a testament to hard work, high standards and dogged determination.” At the end of this month, Destrooper will debut his latest creation, Dances with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, a brand new, full-length ballet set to Mozart’s music. The ballet explores Mozart’s passions, affairs, muses and music.

the passion grew within him For someone who occupies centre-stage so commandingly, it is ironic that Destrooper came to ballet rather late in life. Born and raised in Montreal, Destrooper moved to Switzerland at age seven. His father, Johan Destrooper, worked with a global technology company and now lives in Victoria, where he helps with BV’s administration. In 1985, after high school, Destrooper wanted to return to Canada, so he enrolled at the University of Victoria where he earned a scholarship and graduated in 1991 with a BA in French literature and language, and a minor in English literature. He excelled in sports but didn’t start taking ballet classes until 1989, at age 21, when a girlfriend, noting his love of arts and his athletic ability, suggested he try it. He attended classes at the then-Academy of Ballet in Victoria. “I was always pretty good at picking up things, but I could not pick up ballet to save my life,” Destrooper admits with a grin about that first year. “But I like a challenge and I loved the music, and the theatrical, dramatic aspects of dance — and being surrounded by beautiful women all day.” With a growing passion for ballet, he moved to

“He is a perfectionist, not only with himself but with his partners and dancers. He makes a dancer better than they could be on their own.” -Gavin Larsen 21

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Destrooper chats backstage with members of his company.

Winnipeg to attend classes for two years at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School in 1990. His athletic skills helped him progress. “I worked extremely hard to catch up,” he says. “Of course I wish I had started earlier, but I don’t regret it as it gave me a very different perspective on the artform.” He was invited to join the RWB’s professional program by 1992. Choreographer and former RWB dancer Bruce Monk remembers Destrooper from that time: “We immediately recognized he had a very unique gift with pas de deux. He was great right away and just continued to develop.” Destrooper was promoted to RWB soloist in 1997, but in 2001 decided to join the Alberta Ballet, where he was hired as a principal dancer. “I think what validates you as an artist is if you work with other companies and keep improving,” he says. After two fruitful years in Alberta, he joined the Oregon Ballet Theatre where he says he danced some of his best

leading roles. “He is a perfectionist, not only with himself but with his partners and dancers,” says Gavin Larsen, who worked with Destrooper at OBT. “His drive to excel has drawn performances out of me and others that I never could have imagined. As a director and as a partner, he makes a dancer better than they could be on their own.” Like many artists, Destrooper is reluctant to talk about his private life, preferring to talk about his work instead, but when asked about his dual personal and professional relationship with Bayne, his partner of four years, he says: “There is that cliché — you always fall in love with your muse. I’m able to separate the two a lot more, the two lives. I treat my partners as equals — but in the end I have to be boss.”

plunging in to his new role When the opportunity came in 2007 to lead Ballet Victoria, Destrooper left Oregon and plunged into the new role with a passion. But difficult economic times in BC have meant the company has often lacked sufficient arts funding to help it grow and attract new audiences. He takes the company on the road each year around the province; The Secret Garden had performances in North Vancouver, Chilliwack, Duncan and Courtenay. "BV runs on fumes with its focus on trying to support its artists,” says Destrooper, who notes the annual budget has grown from $80,000 a year to $550,000 since he took over — and the company has remained in the black. It derives 65 per cent of its revenue from ticket sales, 25 per cent from donations and sponsorships, and 15 per cent from government grants. He

“There is that cliché — you always fall in love with your muse...” 23

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points out that, typically, arts groups receive about one-third of their funds from government and only 40 to 50 per cent from the box office. The often sardonic and dry-witted Destrooper, a recipient of the 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, doesn’t equivocate about his frustrations with “trying to obtain funding for a company that performs for 20,000 people across the province every season, that creates four different repertoires, and that hires so many dancers, musicians, writers, designers.” And at the end of closing night of the Secret Garden performance, Destrooper stood shoulder to shoulder with his company as they happily drank up the applause for their latest achievement. “Ballet is my passion and my life,” he says. “Although the hard work never ceases, I get to do what I love and share it with my dancers and Ballet Victoria audiences.” Garth von Buchholz is a writer, educator, photographer and digital media consultant. He teaches at Royal Roads University.

Ballet Victoria presents

Dances with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart May 30 and 31 at 7:30 pm, Royal Theatre. For more information see balletvictoria.ca


Hooked on aquaponics:

Permaculture at Mason Street city Farm  by alisa gordaneer  illustration by pip knott


hen Angela Moran, 33, found herself at Victoria’s Mason Street City Farm in 2006, she was excited to take over the $1/ year lease for the farm, which has operated for nearly 25 years on the space of two house lots, just blocks from City Hall. She’d just finished four years studying permaculture and sustainability at Brock University, and several seasons travelling around North and Central America and the United Kingdom, working on organic farms and learning about various food production systems. She was eager to dig in to her own plot of land. The lease for the farm, which now houses several greenhouses, numerous raised beds and a flock of chickens, has gone up to $500/year, but Moran, who is also a mom and a flamenco dancer, has managed to make a modest living there, supplying farm produce to Hot and Cold Café, Relish, Niagara Grocery, Fairfield Market and occasional food boxes.

will allow the farm to “have a higher yield with less labour.” Now, Moran says she can’t help but imagine an aquaponic system anywhere she sees an empty space in the city. “I used to look at yards and want to farm them,” she says, adding that now,

parking lots, rooftops and concrete areas all present possible aquaponic sites. As such, Moran and Brown are searching for more areas to install aquaculture systems, where in exchange for space, landowners can share in the produce. Clearly, this idea is taking root.

Grow food anywhere Like a plant in great soil, Moran’s business couldn’t help but grow. Last fall she invited farm partner Jesse Brown, 31 (“We’re in business love,” quips Moran), to join the growing project. They launched an IndieGogo campaign that raised $15,000 towards hiring four interns to help build a raised aquaponic system for the farm. Designed by Brown, the system uses rainwater, fish and raised beds for growing produce. “It allows us to grow food a lot quicker,” says Brown, adding that once it’s completed early this summer, the system


Koi Decorative koi provide nutrients to the water. Their poop is toxic to them, but when it’s flushed out into the roots of the plants, it becomes nitrogen-rich organic fertilizer. The koi themselves are sold to people who want to stock home ponds and aquariums. The farm may one day house tilapia as a food crop, says Brown.

Greenhouse Brown built and designed the greenhouse using PVC tubing, plastic sheeting and two-by-fours. The temperature inside is typically a few degrees — and as much as 20 degrees — warmer than the outside air. The warmth, combined with micronutrients in the aquaponic system water and microclimates within the greenhouse, create ideal growing conditions for high-yield crops.

Seedlings Rainwater collection system “One of the many issues around rainwater collection is the cost of storage,” says Brown, explaining that for the amount of water they need for the aquaponic system, it would be prohibitively expensive to use city water. Each tank holds 1,000 gallons of rainwater, collected from the roof of the greenhouse. Brown and Moran built the tanks for about a quarter as much as commercially made ones would cost. They’re lined with pond liner, a layer of old carpet, and surrounded with an enclosure of “hog wire,” a heavy-gauge wire fencing. Sunk about two feet into the ground, they hold as much water as each aquaponic system needs.

Aquaponics system Two four-by-10-foot raised beds, and a narrower two-by10-foot bed, were built with wood and pond liners. Lightweight pumice stone lines the beds, providing a growing medium for all sorts of produce. A 1.5-amp pump circulates water from the koi tanks to the roots of the plants, filling and draining the beds every 15 minutes.

The farm produces mainly herbs and vegetables, but because the greenhouse is noticeably warm, it becomes possible to grow more unusual crops like turmeric, ginger, and lemongrass. The greenhouse already has a lemon tree sapling, a loquat, and eventually will house banana plants and an olive tree. Moran is excited about the possibilities that open up with the aquaponics system. “We want this to be a demonstration site, where people can see different types of aquaponics systems, and go home and make their own.”

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Photos By

We all know that every photograph tells a story. But what we usually don’t know is the impact our photos have on others, especially strangers. One of last year’s winner’s photos moved one Boulevard reader so much that she had to act ... see page 36 for that story. Will these photos have an impact on you?

 David Donaldson, 56, Sidney Shot taken: August 25, 2012, Sidney Camera: Nikon D90 Taking the shot: Donaldson, a nature photographer for six years, took this picture at about 6 am, near the end of the Sidney fishing pier. “This morning had the most beautiful and unusual clouds,” he says. Seeking the perfect frame: “That morning, I took over 80 pictures of the cloud formations before getting ready for work,” says Donaldson, who works at a paint store for a living. “I do most of my shooting at the waterfront.” 28

 Cassidy Nunn, 26, North Saanich Shot taken: September 2012, North Saanich Camera: Nikon D300 Taking the shot: Nunn arrived at this farm just as the sun was coming up. Two foals played in the paddock before galloping out the back gate to meet up with their mums. “In this shot I caught the one heading out first, into the sun,” she says. Great location: “I love to do photo sessions on farms,” says Nunn, a freelance writer and photographer who also works at a horse tack store in Brentwood Bay. “I can’t get enough of the beautiful, often rustic and unpolished backdrops which complement almost any subject.” On her style: “I enjoy subjects who move and are unpredictable because they continue to challenge me,” she says. “I always end up with shots that surprise me.” Find her online: nunnotherphotography.com 29

Nicol, 43, Victoria  Mark Shot taken: June 2011, Dornie, Scotland Camera: Canon 5DMark2 with 17-40 f4 lens Taking the shot: Nicol and his wife stayed in a rented camper van within walking distance of Eilean Donan Castle. “This afforded me the opportunity to wait for the castle lights to come up and eventually match the brightness of darkening night sky,” says Nicol, who waited until about 11:30 pm to shoot this one. “Exploring the castle was certainly one of the highlights of my time in Scotland.” Favourite spots: “I don’t have a favourite place to shoot because a great picture can avail itself anywhere, any time,” says Nicol, who works with blind and partially sighted individuals for a living. “But I will say, I’d go back to Scotland in a heartbeat.” Find him online: marknicolphotography.com

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Christine McAuley, 44, Victoria  Shot taken: May 15, 2012, Holland Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III Taking the shot: The fields of tulips and grape hyacinths were in full bloom when McAuley was in Holland with her family. “We were heading back to our hotel when our daughter spotted all the ‘purple’ flowers,” since the grape hyacinths were her favourite colour, says McAuley. “She asked if we could please stop so she could run down the rows, feel and smell all the flowers. We said yes and then I had to add, as long as I can take a photo!” Favourite pics: “I love capturing spontaneous moments,” says McAuley, who is currently attending the Western Academy of Photography in Victoria. “It makes me happy when my photos involve people. I enjoy capturing everyday moments — a slice of life.” Find her online: igotchaphotography.com


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The power of a picture

Last year’s Photos By issue included a winning shot taken by Ken Miner of Zorro, a dog who lived in the Care for Dogs shelter in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Amy Fischer of Brentwood Bay saw the photo of Zorro in the magazine and contacted the shelter to adopt him. Fischer was also in touch with Miner; they became good friends. Zorro had health issues to overcome before he could be cleared for travel to Canada. In mid-March, Miner says Zorro “was finally given the green light,” scheduled to arrive in Vancouver around April 21. Unexpectedly, in late March, Zorro was rushed into the clinic for emergency surgery for canine bloat (a twisted stomach). He did not make it. “My devastation cannot be put into words,” Fischer says. After nearly a yearlong wait, Zorro had been a few weeks away from a new life in Canada. ”Zorro changed my life, even though we never met,” she says.

“That photo set off a chain of events that I would never have imagined,” Miner says. “We never know what impact a simple photo will have on the world.” Fischer is starting Zorro’s Fund, which will support other dogs at the shelter that require emergency treatment so they can survive, thrive and find their loving forever homes. Donations can be made to Zorro’s Fund at The Care For Dogs shelter in Chiang Mai, Thailand via their website, quoting “Zorro’s Fund” in the subject line. See carefordogs.org and facebook.com/ street.dog.rescue. 32

Ken Miner, 47, Victoria  Shot taken: June 17, 2012, Bayon Temple, Angkor, Cambodia Camera: Nikon D90, 18-105mm 3.5-5.6 Nikon lens set to 26mm Taking the shot: “I was photographing the incredible architecture of Bayon Temple when out of the corner of my eye, I saw the flash of the monks’ orange robes,” says Miner, who has a studio in the Metchosin Arts and Cultural Centre. “I spun around and only managed to snap one frame — this one — before they disappeared like spirits back into the stone.” Making friends: Miner loves shooting in Southeast Asia and now has friends there. “They know where to go to get away from the tourist spots, and can act as interpreters for me,” he says. Why travel photography rocks: “I like the way the camera can be an icebreaker when meeting people that do not speak the same language,” Miner says. Find him online: zuludog.ca


Victoria’s trusted name in flooring SiNcE 1948 For over 60 years, we’ve built our reputation through Patrick Kennedy, 48, Brentwood Bay  Shot taken: Wallace Road, Central Saanich Camera: Mamiya RZ67 Pro ll, shot on Fuji Acros 100 B&W film Taking the shot: “I drove past this truck several times that day without thought before I took this photo,” says Kennedy, a freelance digital production artist. The plastic rolls looked “almost sculptural.” Kennedy calls the photo “a simple reminder that ordinary things can become extraordinary if we take the time to look.” Why film is fab: “You cannot get the same nuances from digital,” says Kennedy, who always has his Leica M handy. Bella Italia: His favourite place to shoot is Italy, where his in-laws live. “On each visit, I fall in love again with the light,” he says. “It is completely different from any other place that I have been.” Find him online: reinventstudio.ca

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Shaping Community Leaders: Leadership Victoria fosters emerging leaders and helps them shine

When Opportunists Knock: PROTECTING SENIORS FROM FRAUD In our community, opportunistic people — whether illegally or unethically — are targeting seniors for profit. Seniors are perceived to be vulnerable: scammers and marketers alike may assume that seniors are poorly informed, their support system is gone or distant, or they have home equity or retirement savings ripe for the snatching. Though these stereotypes likely apply only to a small minority, they do result in seniors being targeted by scammers far more often than other demographics. “WHEN OPPORTUNISTS KNOCK” TEAM MEMBERS

» Linda Ryder, Administration Manager, Colliers International » David Nicholson, Technical Investigator, Gaming Policy and Enforcement Branch; retired Victoria Police officer » Cheryl Rothnie, Assistant Manager, Coast Capital Savings » Emily Pridham, First Link Coordinator, Alzheimer Society of BC » Todd Johnston, Environmental Science Officer, CRD Regional Source Control Program » Susan Neden, Sole Proprietor, SOGYO Coaching and Consulting

 CONNECT AND PROTECT “Everyone has a story about this,” says Todd Johnston, Environmental Science Officer with the CRD Regional Source Control Program and participant in Leadership Victoria’s community leaders program. There is a need to connect those who are vulnerable, as well as their friends and relatives, with the resources that can help in the prevention or aftermath of a scam. When Johnston, along with Linda Ryder, David Nicholson, Cheryl Rothnie, Emily Pridham, and Susan Neden, were tasked by Leadership

Victoria’s community leaders program to develop a project that would have a lasting impact on the community, they saw that need and decided to focus their Community Action Project on addressing it.  RAISING AWARENESS At Leadership Victoria, which is funded in part by the Victoria Foundation, Johnston and his fellow team members met people who are making a profound difference in the community. Spurred by this example, they developed “When Opportunists Knock,” a two-hour event designed to empower seniors, their friends and families, and local organizations. Held April 23 and 30, “When Opportunists Knock” educated participants about fraud and its prevention, connected them to local resources, and encouraged victims to speak up. With help from Silver Threads, Target Theatre, Citizens’ Counselling Centre, Seniors Serving Seniors, the Better Business Bureau, Oak Bay Police, and Victim Services, the team behind “When Opportunists Knock” hopes that they were able to promote the wellbeing of local seniors and raise awareness about scams.


CREATING LASTING LEGACIES Since 2000, Leadership Victoria has become the go-to organization for community leadership in Greater Victoria. This community-based, voluntary organization develops, supports and celebrates outstanding community leaders. Over 80 volunteers put their collective skills to work to develop Victoria’s emerging generation of leaders. Leadership Victoria’s signature nine-month, experiential learning program immerses emerging leaders in solving real-world problems.  COMMUNITY ACTION PROJECTS AT WORK Over 250 graduates have completed 50 community action projects spanning a wide range of issues. One project built an environmental education shelter at Witty’s Lagoon. An innovative documentary film project engaged local youth in addressing homelessness. Another project created a community tool shed and sharing program for low-income families. Completed with the financial support of the Victoria Foundation, a local partner

organization, a team coach and an individual participant mentor, these projects attest to Leadership Victoria’s innovative approach to working collaboratively across sectors. They bring passionate leaders together, providing them with the skills and networks to leave lasting legacies that benefit our community — now and in the long-term.



COMPLETED BY GRADUATES Additionally, Leadership Victoria hosts the annual Victoria Leadership Awards — Victoria’s “Academy Awards for community leadership.” Leadership Victoria also provides targeted learning opportunities on themes like youth leadership and engagement. Their newest program is “Help the Helper,” a comprehensive leadership skills development program.

COMMUNITY LEADERS PROGRAM – INFORMATION SESSIONS When: Tuesday, May 14 & Tuesday, May 21, 2013 5:00 to 6:15 pm Where: Vancity Community Room, 3075 Douglas Street (at Finlayson) For more information, please contact Jack Shore at jack@leadershipvictoria.ca, call 250.386.2269 www.leadershipvictoria.ca





Men of Fashion  text and photos By lia crowe


enswear is a completely different animal than womenswear, my stronger area of expertise: a broadshouldered, scruffy-faced animal that smells good and looks great in a single-buttoned jacket. Menswear is less about drastic changes every season and more about classic pieces with new cuts and details. It’s less about being an object of beauty and more about pulling the trigger with confidence.

With spring in the air and an unstoppable urge to explore menswear, I was delighted to sit down and chat with my go-to fashion guys, capturing this beast with those who know it best. When I need menswear styling, I go to them. When I need a dose of what’s new and fresh, I go to them. To collaborate on a fashion project, you guessed it — it’s these guys. These are the men who put the juice in Victoria fashion. They dress to inspire and elevate. They don’t back down from some of my crazier ideas; they take what they know and pass it along. They are usually up for a chat — and it’s always an absolute pleasure.



[best] Bad


David Wallace, style tzar and the head of Pacific Design Academy’s fashion design program

Fashion veteran David Wallace remains one of my go-to guys for fashion chats and advice. He always looks good, which inevitably pushes me to make more of an effort in my own outfit choices. We sat down for some food at the new Mediterranean restaurant, Catalano. Fashion design versus teaching “Fashion is all about storytelling; it’s conceptual. I love the coming together of the people to create ideas that I had,” he says. Now a fashion designer and teacher, David began at art school as a painter but switched to fashion as a medium of expression. “I’m very selfish. I don’t design for the public. I create to get the ideas out of my head. But the process is long,” he says. “Teaching, on the other hand, is immediate. There is an instant transfer of energy.”

“Girls come into the school to learn the language of fashion. I can’t give them the vision, so I give them the communication skills to get their vision out there.”

David on egos “Everyone that comes to the school has an ego about it: they’ve looked at a piece of clothing in a store and said, ‘I could do better.’ That’s good. I have to help them cultivate the ego,” he says. “It’s the romance about fashion that I have to kill.”

Dave is wearing: Gitman zebra camo vintage shirt, Zenga blazer, J Brand jeans, John Varvatos suede boots and eng•lish pocket square. 37

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the Classic Dale olsen, owner of Outlooks for Men and fashion problem solver (I challenge you not to have a total crush )

When driving the kids to school in the morning, I occasionally catch a glimpse of Dale Olsen riding his bicycle to work, wearing something beautiful, and I think, that looks nice. I often go to Dale when I need men’s fashion. I trust him and his vast menswear knowledge, and it’s pleasant, always. I convince him to let me into his “messy” office for a chat.

“It takes nothing to elevate a guy to the bestdressed in the room ... unless I’m there.”

Dale is wearing: Allen Edmonds brogues, Standard Trade jeans, Gitman shirt, and Engineered Garments blazer and reversible vest, all made in America. Knit tie by Toronto’s Dion Neckwear.

Dale’s one wish “I just wish everyone would dress better,” Dale says. “Any chump can run into a store on a Friday and buy an outfit to wear on a Saturday, but if you look like a shlub six days of the week, you’re not serving yourself. Look good every day. It’s not hard.” Fashion fixer “I try to help a guy to dress right. Shopping these days can be brutal, but it shouldn’t be,” he says. “It should be relaxing and helpful. If I need an accountant I don’t try to do it myself. And it’s the same with dressing. Get me to help you.” Not-so-secret list “There are 10 things a man could own and if those are the only things he wore, he would be better dressed than 95 per cent of men,” Dale says. He gave me the list. It’s really good. If you want it, you know where to find him.

The Hot Photographer dean azim, surf-photographer-turnedfashion-natural with a kind heart and an infectious sense of wonder

Dean is my go-to photographer and master in the subtle art of creative collaboration. He’s always up to try anything and respectful of any weird idea I might throw at him. Usually difficult to pin down, Dean met me for beer and poutine at Spinnakers and allowed me to torture him for a few minutes with personal questions. 40

Dean as an adverb Excerpt from a conversation I overheard recently: “Oh, yeah, that guy’s good looking. But not like Dean Azim handsome.” The man who has become an adverb could have a huge ego and be torture to work with, but that’s not the case with Mr. Azim.

Make it good “I see fashion differently than [I see] the rest of the world,” Dean says. “I just try to translate something creatively. I don’t give a sh-t about what’s current as much I care about making something good.”

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PORCELAIN TILE NATURAL STONE CERAMICS “This is going to sound so damned cheesy, you’d better not quote me: women are gorgeous, they’re incredible.”

No-brainer I ask Dean what inspires him but immediately cut him off: ”I think women inspire you! But, sorry, you tell me.” ”Yeah, women,” he says. “I think all women, big and small ... there’s something perfect. That’s the esthetic that inspires me.” Blushing a tiny bit with that better-thanGeorge-Clooney smile, he cut the interview off. “I just love shooting, that’s it.”


Dean is wearing: Etiquette henley shirt.

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the Curator

Patrick tier, owner of Citizen Clothing and known as the keeper of the wine gums to the children of Oak Bay (and me)

“That’s the ‘it’ factor: be confident, then go be good.”

Patrick is wearing: Denham jacket, Baldwin oxford shirt, Etiquette henley, Prps jeans and Wolverine boots. Patrick and I tuck into our usual shoot-thebreeze spot, the leather couch at the back of Citizen Clothing in Estevan Village. Getting out of bed “Source it, pare it down, compile it, give it the composition, then send it out to the people I connect with. That’s the best thing in the world; it’s why I do this. I love it!” Patrick is charged. “So that’s what gets you out of bed in the morning?” I ask. “That and those two girls,” he says, speaking about the two blond bursts of sunshine that are his beautiful partner and sweet daughter. “They get me up in the morning.”

Synergy, in a not-so-hokey way “The coolest part is when that synergy hits,” Patrick says. “It sounds hokey, I know, like moonbeams and unicorns, but I love that. And it doesn’t matter whether it’s soap or a whole wardrobe.” Men, take note “You know what men wear best? Confidence. That’s the best thing a guy can put on,” Patrick says. “Or a very well-fitting jacket,” I throw in. “Yeah — because he had the confidence to put it on,” he says. “Or the confidence to make a relationship with someone like me who can put him in the right jacket that will make him look 10 feet tall and bulletproof.”


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the Preppy Kid

scott thompson, 6th generation member of the W&J Wilson legacy

Scott was born into fashion. He carries an innate sense of humour that quickly put a smile on my face. I’m just getting to know him, forging a new menswear relationship and thoroughly enjoying it. For our shoot, I made him do all sorts of funny things in and around the Government St. W&J Wilson store — and he was a great sport. Fashion lifer (with laughter) Laughing through our whole chat, Scott tells me, “I’ve been working here since I was born! I was the best preppy kid in town, wearing Ralph Lauren polo shirts to school.” “What’s your favourite fashion piece now?” I ask. After a brief pause, he explodes, “I love hoodies! I’m a sucker for them. I wear them under a sport coat. It’s fashionable, so I can do that now.”

“I love how fashion goes both ways. Now you see the young guys with the pocket [square] and denim on the old guys.”

Family is key I ask if he’s always in a jacket. “Always a jacket. My grandfather would roll over in his grave if I came to work without a jacket.” He shows me woven bracelets on his wrist. “My staff bugs me because I wear these,” he says. I thought they were a fashion thing, but he explains, “This is what my 10-year-old makes me, in the colours of his baseball team.” I like the look: his custom jacket and European dress shirt with the bracelets. “I wear them because it’s important to me.”

Scott is wearing: Culture shirt and custom-made jacket. 45


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Iain is wearing: To Boot New York shoes, Marcoliani socks, wings+horns pants and sweatshirt, Ingram shirt, Z-Zenga jacket, Altea tie and scarf, Sand coat, vintage Yves St-Laurent glasses, Norse Projects hat, Braun watch and eng•lish pocket square.

The Boundary Pusher Iain Russell, menswear and digital

“‘Why are you wearing a suit with a bow tie and a French cuffed tuxedo shirt?’ It’s ‘cause of you, girl.”

photography teacher at Pacific Design Academy and menswear blogger

I photographed Iain Russell at Pacific Design Academy and when I got the film back, there wasn’t one frame that wasn’t amazing. He’s fresh, refreshing and not afraid to lay it all out there. You’re the inspiration Even a woman who’s not into fashion can be “intoxicated by the fact that I’m dressed up. I love that,” Iain says. “I wear clothes to inspire others. I’m transparent. I will actually show you what I wear, every day. Ask me. Why wouldn’t I share that with the world?” And he does, on his Instagram account, isthismenswear. The beautiful, soft images are in keeping with the smooth esthetic of Iain himself. Dressed for McD’s “People may be surprised that my favourite thing is McDonalds’ cheeseburgers,” Iain says. “I was getting ready the other night to get some and I was wearing my bright green jacket but couldn’t find the correct purple scarf. I can’t wear the tan scarf — that would be atrocious!” Big city style Seeing Iain during my day is like seeing a bright light, a flash of big city on our small city streets. “Women’s fashion involves more thinking and coming to it over a period of time,” Iain says. “For men, you have to pull the trigger, be there, do it in the moment. Otherwise, you’re a failure.” Bam!


A blend of modern and traditional touches gives a million-dollar-view home a wide appeal.

All in the family

 by carolyn heiman  photography by leanna rathkelly


n the past five years, Trevor and Graeme Mann have built 50

new homes, a significant achievement by any standard — and even more so in that it was done in a climate where new home construction in the region has been soft. It started with one spec home, just to see how it would work out. Through word of mouth, a fledgling business idea took off in much the same way that a three-generation business started by their grandfather 65 years ago, Don Mann Excavating Ltd., grew from the purchase of one small tractor to become one of Victoria’s largest excavation companies. “Trevor and I always wanted to have our own business growing up. We saw our dad and uncles working together,” says Graeme, who wanted to do that, too. The Mann brothers, who are 29 and 33 years old, learned a lot from working in the family business. “Trevor and I have both worked in the excavation business. We know how to get into a ditch and work,” says Graeme, the younger of the two. Adds Trevor: “We’ve laid a lot of pipe.” As the two brothers sit at a table talking about their home building business, GT Mann Construction Ltd., and the homes they have built for themselves, the conversation naturally shifts to shared, carefree days as children when the two spent endless hours constructing forts and tree houses from scrap lumber found on their parents’ large property. “I guess we were really building all our lives,” says Graeme. “We were always finding lumber and dragging it into the bush to build forts. It’s just what we did.”


Why can’t we be friends Their word-of-mouth growth shows they have a natural affinity for building relationships with their clients, first by listening carefully to what they want and helping them stay within the budget they’ve set for the home. “We tell them what they can and cannot do within their budget,” Graeme says.

It’s common for anyone building their dream home to find bigger and better ideas for the home and urge the contractor to adopt it in the plans. “I’ll have to tell them, ‘If we go here it will push things to where you didn’t want to go,’” says Trevor. A big part of the relationship is

keeping everything transparent, including detailed accounting when the bills come in. “Every single receipt is included. As much as we are nice guys, the client wants to see where their money is going,” says Graeme. “When you build someone a home you are also building on a friendship.”

Grand space, grander views Wide-plank maple flooring in the inline kitchen, dining and living room are stained a warm and space-expanding cappuccino brown.

“When you build someone a home you are also building on a friendship.” 50

Savouring the views Both brothers have adopted design and colour ideas for their own homes from clients after admiring the end results. Trevor’s 3,500-square-foot home spans a ridge high atop Mill Hill and is aptly named Vista 180 for its sweeping views across the city to Mount Baker and over to the Olympics — it’s designed with the view in mind. “I would say my favourite feature of the house is its open concept for entertaining that flows right out to the deck,” where a hot tub awaits anyone wanting to linger over a sunset. Its colour palette stays within a handsome band of putty, taupe, and pleasing whites against cappuccino maple floors. Trevor easily rhymes off the names of Benjamin Moore proven colours — alexandria beige, buckhorn, and piedmont gray — placed in his home. The neutral scheme is soothing and readily lends itself to a range of eye-popping accent colours, should he choose. Nearly 11-foot ceilings make the home worthy of the panoramic views it offers from almost every room. The high ceilings and oversized doors were two things that Trevor refused to compromise on when working with Wil Peereboom from Victoria Design Group on the home’s design. Along with the high ceilings, the oversized doors contribute to the home’s substantial statement. Attention and any extra available money was put into the master bathroom and kitchen, areas that have proven to matter for resale and which define the calibre of a home. “I like a white kitchen,” says Trevor, explaining that he paired manmade white quartz on the island with dark granite on the

Laid-back living A sense of casual chic is created with complementary, but not matching, cabinetry and countertops.


remaining countertops for a contrasting look. While glass tiled backsplashes are a strong trend, Trevor finds them too shiny and found a tile that included glass, porcelain and granite that dialled down the shine effect while keeping the look current. Like many young people acquiring their first home in Victoria’s high real estate market, he looked to ways for making it affordable, adding a suite above the garage. The location limits noise transfer between the two units and for double measure, he added special insulation called

Nearly 11-foot ceilings make the home worthy of the panoramic views it offers from almost every room.

Soaking in the view

The master ensuite takes full advantage of the view over the city while soaking in the tub or having a rain shower in the adjacent spacious tiled stall. 52

Roxul followed by Donnacona soundboard, Resilient Bars (commonly referred to as Rez-bar) and finally 5/8 drywall, ensuring everyone has a sense of their own space. This year the home won Gold in the category of best single family detached home 2,500 to 3,500 sq. ft. at the 2012 CARE awards, no doubt because of careful integration of features that make the home both elegant and comfortable. In keeping with modern trends, the home is fully smart wired, enabling the owner to control many electrical functions throughout the home from any room via remote controls.

Simply Sophisticated.

Alustra Counterparts (Silhouette® and Luminette®)


Six Inspired Window Fashions. One Remarkable Collection. Style elevates everyday life and The Alustra® Collection elevates style. With unique fabrics and finishes, along with exquisite detailing, impeccable workmanship and enduring elegance, Hunter Douglas offers “The Alustra Difference” – a distinctive collection of exclusive window fashions and available at Ruffell & Brown Window Fashions. Innovative Textures • Exclusive Sheers & Finishes Imaginative Combinations • Unique Fabrics

Supply List

Builder: GT Mann Contracting Ltd. Interior design: GT Mann Contracting Ltd. Cabinetry: Harbour City Kitchens Counters: King’s Granite Works Plumbing: Duckworths Plumbing and Gas Electrical: Rob Jones Electrical Lighting: Pine Lighting Appliances: Trail Appliances Landscaping: GT Mann Contracting Ltd. Flooring: Island Floor Centre Stone: Hillside Stone and Garden Flowers: Poppies Floral Art

Carolyn Heiman explores beautiful Island homes each month for Boulevard. If you know of a gorgeous home you’d like to see profiled she can be contacted at cheiman@shaw.ca.

A+ Rating

Ph. 250-384-1230 1-2745 Bridge St. Victoria, BC Mon - Fri 9:00 - 5:00 ; Sat 9:30 - 4:00



Best City

of the




18 th


LISA WILLIAMS W VILLA MADRONA a magnificent, 2 acre, gated estate with gracious 11,000 sq.ft. main residence, sports court, separate games/enter-tainment area, incredible swimming pool & home theatre, 9-car parking garage/carport, PLUS a separate 3461 sq.ft. renovated waterfront home & property w/separate title. Incredible views, custom finishing, imported fixtures and furnishings, expansive patios, boathouse & so much more . . . a world-class estate! $8,488,000

EXCLUSIVE 5 AC WATERFRONT ESTATE, unlike anything else in Victoria! Offered for sale for the first time, this totally private, world-class property boasts a 8900 sq.ft. main house, 5 car garage, separate guest house, pool cabana and tennis court; your own personal country club! Completely renovated over a 3 year period, the home boasts top of the line custom finishing and all the luxurious extras you would expect, with incredible views, 7700 sq.ft. of patio space, expansive lawns, private beach access & more! $8,900,000

GRAND OCEANFRONT ESTATE on peaceful & private 1.61 acre property with stunning ocean views from all main rooms! 2006 built, with 5-6 bedrms/7 bths, 7000 sq.ft. and over 6000 sq.ft. of incredible seaside patios extending down to the water’s edge! This spectacular property enjoys a sunny south-east exposure and world-class views, and was designed to provide dramatic & inviting spaces both for family living and entertaining on a grand scale! Sep nanny suite, conservatory, exercise rm & so much more! $4,388,000

WORLD-CLASS WATERFRONT in prestigious 10 Mile Point! This sunny .55ac SOUTH/WEST facing property on a quiet cul-de-sac is one of the best in the area; exceptionally private w/out-of-this-world views! Over 150’ of low bank frontage w/large building envelope & lots of options to create a simply incredible new oceanfront estate! Enjoy abundant marine wildlife & easy access for boating, kayaking & fishing! $2,495,000

SPACIOUS LUXURY on the oceanfront! New custom home with over 5700 sq.ft. and 6-7 bedrooms, 7 baths, 4 car garage parking & so much more! Gorgeous HW and marble flrs, high ceilings, 2 master suite options, stunning, gourmet kitchen, deluxe home theatre, 2 bedrm in-law suite, PLUS separate studio . . . perfect for a home office, student space or an artist! Seaside patio with firepit, amazing views from all main rms and close to Mt. Doug trails, all amenities, UVic and shopping! $2,349,000

SPECTACULAR .87 ACRE OCEANFRONT property with beautifully maintained & upgraded 4000 sq.ft. 4 bed/3 bth hm with sep office/studio! Enjoy incredible, panoramic ocean & Mt. Baker views from this lovely 10 Mile Point home in a peaceful setting close to Cadboro Bay Village! Sunny, open floorplan boasts large main level master suite w/deluxe new ensuite, skylights, lg kitchen w/ sunny breakfast area, sep. dining rm,, tons of storage for kayaks & boating gear, beautiful gardens & manicured lawns leading to seaside patio & FP! $1,988,000

CADBORO BAY Right on the park! This lovely 2011 custom home with ocean views boasts 5 bedrms & 5 bths with high ceilings, HW floors throughout, oversized windows, granite kitchen and 2 master suite options! Enjoy the sunny, southern exposure and gated access directly into GYRO PARK and sandy Cadboro Bay Beach . . . Bonus option for self-contained suite too! Lots of parking and set well away from road . . . walk to the Village, Starbucks, shops, schools and more! $1,388,000

DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITY! This 5.95 ACRE parcel is the largest remaining privately owned property in sought-after Broadmead neighborhood . . . just 6 mins from UVic, 12 minutes from downtown Victoria, close to trails, parks & all amenities! Subdivide into multiple lots . . . this listing includes 3 addresses: 1063 Gardenwood Court, 1105 and 1109 Gracewood Terrace. CALL FOR INFO!

FANTASTIC FAMILY home in beautiful Tanner Ridge! 3 bedrms + den on the main level PLUS a legal 1 bedrm suite down . . . on a sunny & spacious 13,700 sq.ft. property! Just 2 years old, this custom home boasts lovely HW floors, stone fireplace, deluxe kitchen with central island, inviting master suite w/separate tub, shower, double sinks & heated flrs, air conditioning, sound system w/built-in speakers, spacious deck & glimpses of the ocean & Mt. Baker! $848,000

c: 250.514.1966 t: 250.380.3933 ext 617 f: 250.380.3939 lisa.williams@shaw.ca www.LisaWilliams.ca

L I K E N O OT H E R sothebysrealty.ca

Independently Owned and Operated


SUPERB PARKER AVE. WATERFRONT. Recently refurbished Pamela Charlesworth home will impress even the most discerning buyer. Gleaming Brazilian hardwood floors, soaring vaulted ceilings, & sweeping views of the Ocean to San Juan Island and Mt. Baker’s glowing glacier beyond. Fabulous new kitchen. 4 bedroom, master with commanding views. Private .33 acre lot with patio hot tub, to enjoy the views. Dbl car garage. 5255 Parker Ave., Cordova Bay $1,850,000.00

UPLANDS CHARACTER HOME. 6100 sq. ft. residence beautifully updated. 6 bedroom (master with F.P.), 4 baths. Bright kitchen with granite countertops and stainless appliances, formal living room with fireplace, conservatory, games room, secluded garden with hot tub. Nanny area and double garage. 3380 Upper Tce., $1,790,000


FEELS LIKE A MALIBU BEACHFRONT LIFESTYLE HOME! Breathtaking Ocean & Mt. Baker views are yours from this exquisite 5100 sq. ft. custom home. Stroll from your ocean side patio, with gas fire pit, onto miles of sandy beach. Situated on a quiet lane, with elegant privacy gates, & intercom controlled entry. 10΄ ceilings. Gourmet kitchen, Viking 6 burner Gas stove, dual ovens & warming oven. 2 dishwashers 2 fridges. 3 ensuite bedrooms. 5185 Agate Lane, Cordova Bay $2,678,000.00

STUNNING OCEANFRONT. 2.3 acre, 7302 sq. ft. home custom built. Soaring ceilings, marble, hardwood floors. 6 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms, kitchen with eating island, pantry, 6 burner stove and granite countertops. Spa-like ensuite baths. Studio suite. Balcony with spectacular view. Close to golf. 425 La Fortune Rd. $2,500,000

CONTEMPORARY OCEANFRONT. Stunning architect designed oceanfront home. Unique open floor plan with 9΄ ceilings, & gracious curves and angles. Masterfully updated kitchen with granite counter tops, stainless appliances, & eating bar. Large solarium windows in dining room. Chic living with F.P. & oversized built-ins. 2 spacious bdrms with ens. Loft/office up. Multiple decks. Private street. 317 Bessborough Close. $795,000

PROUDLY SERVING VICTORIA FOR 30 YEARS PHONE 250.744.3301 • EMAIL lynne@lynnesager.com WEBSITE www.lynnesager.com Get the results that you desire. Call Lynne for professional representation, when you wish to sell your home. 55


4440 Chatterton Way Victoria mleck@shaw.ca 250.413.7171 margaretleck.com


Spectacular Harbour Front Residence with 9' ceilings. Floor to ceiling windows capturing a panoramic inner harbour view. Covered 240 sq. ft. balcony to enjoy outdoor living all year. Gourmet kitchen for the chef in the family. Open plan perfect for entertaining. 2 master suites for optimum privacy. Separate room with a view for a library, office, TV/family room or dining room that will fit whatever your individual needs are! SHOAL POINT a place you would be proud to call home! $1,150,000 MLS #319327

Sunny, south west facing corner suite overlooks a landscaped courtyard, putting green and waterfalls. Breathtaking views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the snow-capped Olympic Mountains can be viewed from the floor to ceiling windows of this 2 bdrm, 2 1/2 bath plus DEN suite. Bright, spacious plan is great for entertaining. Dream kitchen with custom maple cabinets, granite counter tops, and windows to enjoy the view. Master bdrm/ensuite is separated from the 2nd bdrm/ensuite for maximum privacy. $1,145,000 MLS #318497

Bright south-facing 2 bedroom, 2 bath suite, uniquely zoned live/work, gives you the option to enjoy a pied-a-terre in Victoria or to operate a home-based non-retail business with a private courtyard entry. Shoal Point is surrounded by mature landscaping, easy access to the Inner Harbour, James Bay’s parks, seaside walkways, and downtown shopping. Secured underground parking, 24 hr monitored security, concierge. Guest suites. It’s rentable too! $525,900 MLS #319235

SHOAL POINT is one of Victoria’s premiere properties and a world class building offering beautiful waterfront living. Walk to the city, stroll along the waterfront, dine out nearby or stay at home and enjoy world class amenities including: 25M lap pool, hot tub, exercise room, putting green, concierge, 24 hr secured entry, guest suites, car wash, work shop and much more! All surrounded by beautiful mature landscaping and waterfalls. Shoal Point, a place you’ll be proud to call home.

This 1008 sq. ft. condo is perfect for the professional couple or students! The 2 bdrms & 2 bathrooms are separated by the living area, making it easy for a shared lifestyle. 9 ft. ceilings, engineered cherry wood floors, living room with electric fireplace, Master bdrm with walk-in closet & 4 pc ensuite, in-suite laundry. Secured parking & storage locker. Small pets & rentals OK. $349,900 MLS #313027

MILL BAY WATERFRONT 205' of easy access beach front. Includes a two storey beach house on the beach, separate 17' x 11' studio for the artist or guest. The main home can be enjoyed as is, or build you dream home. Minutes to the Mill Bay Marina, or tie up at the buoy out front. $949,000 MLS #305224

Desirable end unit at PORT ROYAL ESTATE overlooking the development to views of Brentwood Bay and the marina. Adult living. Vault ceilings in the living/dining rm. 200 sq. ft. deck. Large main bdrm & 5 pc. ensuite. Den or 2nd bdrm with private courtyard on main level. Lower level provides guest accom. Attached double garage. $625,000 MLS #321503


“My goal is to find your dream home and ensure that the decision you make stands as a wise investment over the long term.”



Beautiful Di Castri built home. 37 x 20 ft living room, oak floors, floor to ceiling windows in the dining room overlooking the patio & gardens. 4 bedrooms up, office plus bonus playroom. Solar heated pool with sauna and change rooms. Quiet street, a retreat worthy of investment. $1,299,000








Bordering Uplands on a beautifully tree lined street, this home has views of ocean, islands & mountains from upper rooms & balcony. Family room addition off of renovated kitchen, high ceilings, flowing layout, charm & character maintained. Minutes from Willows Beach & Estevan Village. $849,000

The fabulous open floor plan is great for entertaining. Heated tile floors in kitchen, bathrooms & entrance. Kitchen features granite & quartz counters, S/S appliances, & gas range. Deck with hot tub has absolute privacy overlooking Feltham Park. Mortgage helper downstairs. $829,900


SO Lovely 3 bedroom home with updated bathroom & kitchen. Private & secluded south facing back yard & sunny back deck . Oak floors in 2008, guest bedroom w/sitting room downstairs. Close to UVIC, great schools & rec centre. $699,900




This turn of the century character home boasts 5 bedrooms up and, with some updating, could be beautifully restored. Beautiful wood staircase and front hall. Price includes separate building lot attached. $1,425,000

Two bedrooms plus den in this spacious, 1500 sq. ft., condo overlooking the gardens of Windsor Park. Walk-thru kitchen offers lots of counter and storage space. 142 sq. ft. west facing balcony. Two bedrooms plus den, in suite laundry & 2 underground parking spaces. Across from the beach. $329,900

Dallas Chapple RE/MAX Camosun • Tel: 250.744.3301 • Toll Free: 1.877.652.4880 www.dallaschapple.com • Email: dallas@dallaschapple.com

design matters

af ter b e f or e an d


Low-tech living

Except for a music player, the Weiss’ garden shed is technology-free.

Designer Q&A Q: Do you believe an “eye” for design is learned, or is it an innate sense that comes naturally to some people? A: Both. I think that you have to have an appreciation for beauty that comes from within and evolves with experience, time and effort. Q: Who are your main creative influences? A: My interior design icon is Albert Hadley (he passed away last year at 91). For garden design, I admire the work of Thomas Hobbs and Patrick Blanc.


Q: You have a garden room on your own property. Why are these spaces important in urban life? A: My garden room, which I have named the “Green Room,” allows me a sanctuary where I can centre myself and think. I feel particularly creative in this room. I often think about my design projects with clients, my botanical pursuits, and how various design elements that come to mind “in the moment” fit together in my world and those around me.

beforehave a & aft you ’d like to shareer


Email us B ef o r eAnd at blvdm Af ter@ ag.ca


Simply vintage:

A garden shed transformed  text and photos by sarah macneill


eave your smartphones at the door: stepping from the garden into Whitehaven, Fred and Claudia Weiss’ completely transformed former garden shed, is a bit like stepping back in time. There are no electronics to speak of, only a music player. The art (originals by Claudia) is classic, the accents vintage. It’s a place to mingle in at a sunny garden party or escape to with a book on a rainy day. The single room and adjoining garden create a veritable backyard oasis on the Weiss’ property, near Oak Bay’s Windsor Park. It began as a backyard landscaping project for local interior and exterior stylist Barbara Gergel, but her clients decided to repurpose the garden shed too, allowing Gergel to create a seamless connection between exterior and interior spaces.


“I always had my eye on the garden shed,” says Gergel. “And I knew [the Weiss’] were up for the challenge.”


For a structure that can often become a hoarder’s paradise, there is no longer anything shed-like about Whitehaven. Heated slate tile floors and wainscoting are understated luxuries and two sets of French doors make it airy and bright. Bird and botanical elements provide a natural theme and custom millwork removes all doubt that the space is anything but carefully and skillfully executed. “Whitehaven has a neutrality about it and a sense of vacation that puts all who visit in good spirits,” says Claudia. This unique and inspiring feature on the property is an accessory to typical residential living that lingers on the threshold between indoors and out. Interior & Landscape Design: Barbara Gergel Millwork: Peter Laxdal 59

FRONT ROW  by robert moyes


 David Blackwood’s Fire Down on the Labrador (etching and aquatint on woven paper, 87.9 x 61.9 cm, 1980) is at the AGGV. 60

Many people who aren’t serious followers of the visual arts are nonetheless familiar with the work of David Blackwood, whose prints depicting the harshness of life in outport Newfoundland are powerful, beautiful, even haunting. The largest-ever retrospective of his work is coming to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, the third and last stop for this exhibition. Black Ice: Prints From Newfoundland comprises 80 prints spanning three decades. It also includes over 30 artifacts and objects from Blackwood’s personal collection, including whaling implements, correspondence, and objects that appear in the actual artworks. “His imagery is strong and iconic,” says AGGV chief curator Michelle Jacques. “His strengths as a storyteller are prominent in this exhibit, and the overarching theme involves the history of Newfoundland and how hard you have to work to survive in such a remote and challenging landscape.” This show was developed and curated at the Art Gallery of Ontario, which has long been the “museum of record” for Blackwood. Jacques still worked at the AGO when the show debuted there in 2011 and says that it became a “sleeper hit” that stood up to blockbuster touring shows like the recent Picasso exhibit. “Blackwood’s prints are striking and fascinating,” adds Jacques. “And it’s increasingly rare that an artist gains renown on the basis of work that tells Canadian stories.” Running from May 3 to September 8. For information, see aggv.ca.

 Race with Roald Amundsen and Robert Falcon Scott in Antarctica.

THE BIG CHILL Without doubt one of the great adventure stories of all time, the epic contest to be the first to reach the South Pole pitted Norway’s Roald Amundsen against England’s Captain Robert Falcon Scott of the British Royal Navy. The 3,000-kilometre journey over the world’s most inhospitable terrain took place from 1911-12; its centenary inspired the American Museum of Natural History to mount an elaborate touring exhibit comprising everything from wolf-fur clothing to lifesized re-creations of Scott’s hut at Cape Evans. The gigantic exhibit also has interesting video projections and many interactive aspects. The Royal BC Museum is the first Canadian venue to host the show — which only seems fair, as it collaborated with the AMNH in creating and designing Race to the End of the Earth. “I was at the New York opening and it’s very powerful,” says the RBCM’s Tim Willis. “You have these two rival teams who couldn’t have been more different, struggling in a world of enormous danger, and ending with both triumphant and tragic outcomes … it’s an incredible record of the human spirit.” Although personal objects, such as a letter that Scott wrote as he lay dying from hunger and cold, help bring the long-ago expedition to life, there is a contemporary component contributed by the RBCM’s Jana Stefan. A conservationist technician who has just finished her second six-month stint in Antarctica helping to preserve and protect the buildings and artifacts left behind by several early expeditions, Stefan will testify to the extraordinary challenges of surviving Antarctica’s isolation and brutally extreme weather. Running from May 17 to October 14. For information, see royalbcmuseum.bc.ca. 61

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INTERIOR DESIGNER Solid Wood Furniture. Locally Owned & Operated. Made to Order. Made in Canada. 62

1-2745 Bridge Street, Victoria, BC 250.590.7133 maxfurniture.ca

 Tableau (acrylic on board, 11” x 26.5”) is at the Mercurio Gallery.


MARIACHI MUSIC — MUY CALIENTE! Instantly recognizable by its spirited rhythms, keening vocals, and the skillful interplay between trumpets, violins and guitars, mariachi music is Mexico’s greatest ambassador. What started as simple, guitar- and harp-based wedding music 200 years ago has evolved into a powerful and electrifying musical form whose passion is complemented by those eye-popping “charro” outfits that seem right out of a ‘30s Hollywood movie. Mariachi music is especially thrilling to experience live, and those who didn’t get to Puerto Vallarta this winter are in luck — Victoria is on the circuit for a touring mariachi festival that was started several years ago by Vancouver musician Alex Alegria. The current tour features two notable bands. Mariachi Los Arrieros is an 11-person ensemble from Laredo that has won numerous awards (including “best in Texas”). Also appearing is Mariachi Cocula, whose hometown in the state of Jalisco in central Mexico is considered the birthplace of mariachi. “Mariachi Cocula start their show with a brief display of ‘historical’ mariachi, then change costumes and come back and show what the music has become,” says Alegria. “They’re one of the best bands in Mexico and audiences just go crazy.”

Performing May 17 at Alix Goolden Performance Hall, 907 Pandora Ave. For information, see mariachifestival.ca

 The Mariachi Festival is coming to Alix Goolden Hall in May.

Kym Hill started Le Soleil Jewellers in the late 1970s in downtown Victoria. But this creator of elegant rings and necklaces also had an eye for art and often traded her jewelry for it. Eventually, the entrepreneurial Hill had so many paintings that she launched Mercurio Gallery in 2006. “It was a hobby that got out of hand,” she laughs. Hill then moved her gallery out to Metchosin in the summer of 2011. “As a businesswoman, I’m optimistic about Metchosin and I really, really like it out here,” she says. Hill’s newest show, Multiple Choice, showcases a quartet of what she calls “experienced and mature” artists. Much-loved painter Phyllis Serota will hang several of her richly hued canvases, which often feature human figures enacting a fable-like narrative. Then there is printmaker (and author) Dorothy Field, who hand-makes the paper her beautifully detailed work appears upon. Tobias Tomlinson is a 40-year potter inspired by both Japanese and Arts & Crafts traditions. And multi-disciplinarian Miles Lowry, best known for his sculptures, will mostly be represented by a selection of small portraitures. “I don’t think any of these great artists has had a show out here,” notes Hill. Running from May 16-26 at 4357 Metchosin Road. For information, see mercurio.ca.


 The hugely popular Miss Saigon features Andrea Macasaet as bargirl Kim.


MAKING THE SEEN DIPLOMA GRADUATES OPENING RECEPTION Saturday, May 4, 2013 2:00 – 5:00 PM Exhibition continues until Thursday, May 16, 2013

GOING FOR THE GOLD MASTER LEVEL & POST-GRADUATES OPENING RECEPTION Saturday, May 18, 2013 2:00 – 5:00 PM Exhibition continues until Thursday, May 30, 2013 Located at the


AN EPIC TRAGEDY If you’re looking for a tragic love story set against a terrifying backdrop of war and chaos, it’s hard to top Miss Saigon, which debuted in 1989 and remains one of the most successful musicals of all time. Loosely based on Puccini’s Madame Butterfly and set during the Vietnam War, it tells of the doomed romance between an American GI and a Vietnamese bargirl, Kim. “The passion of the relationship drives the play,” says Victoria Operatic Society director Roger Carr. “But the war itself was a massive event, one that had horrifying consequences for Vietnam at the same time as it profoundly changed America’s sense of itself.” Carr, a retired drama teacher who still works regularly as both director and actor, is delighted to be tackling such a meaty — and challenging — production. After laughingly admitting that they won’t be able to land an actual helicopter on the McPherson stage for the play’s famed climactic scene, Carr says he was most nervous about casting performers who could plausibly pass for Vietnamese. He is thrilled that they found their Kim at the Canadian College of Performing Arts. “Her name is Andrea Macasaet and she’s a fabulous actor, singer, and dancer,” he says. “It’s hard doing a production that everyone is so familiar with,” adds Carr, who acknowledges the pitfalls of merely being imitative. “But I think we’ve found our own voice through the intensity of the tragic love affair born within the violent collapse of Saigon.” Running at the McPherson Theatre from May 3-12. For tickets, call 250-386-6121.

 Feats of strength abound at Topaz Park, May 18-19.

A WEE BIT OF BONNIE OLD SCOTLAND Although Victoria has always promoted itself as a little bit of old England, there’s been a pervasive Scottish underpinning since the very beginning, from Sir James Douglas to coal baron Robert Dunsmuir. And the city invariably sports a kilt via its annual Highland Games, which this year celebrates its 150th anniversary — making it the longest continuously running Games in the entire country. It’s a great family event expected to attract up to 20,000, thanks to a smorgasbord of Scottish and Celtic cultural activities and performances such as highland dancing, bagpiping and drumming, varied musical performances, military displays with cannon and musket demonstrations, falconry and sword-fighting exhibitions, and sheep herding competitions. Of particular interest are the Drum Major Challenge and the Heavy Events Challenge, both of which feature world-calibre performers. “Ever since we hosted the Heavy Events world championships in 2010 we’ve been recognized as one of the top venues in the world,” says Jim Maxwell, longtime president of the Victoria Highland Games Association. “We are drawing an elite field for events like tossing the caber and hammer throwing.” (There’s also a haggis-tossing contest for those less manly … or for anyone with a grudge against Scotland’s notorious affront to culinary propriety.) And thanks to an enhanced budget for this milestone celebration, extras include a performance by renowned Celtic folk-punk rockers Spirit of the West (who play May 16 at Sugar Nightclub). “This is going to be a fantastic celebration,” declares a proud Maxwell. Running May 18-19 at Topaz Park (Blanshard at Finlayson). For information, see victoriahighlandgames.com.

for Approval

A PRETTY GIRL A Shayna Maidel by Barbara Lebow

September 13 – 28 Drama






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Studio 30 art show: Original paintings and cards from local artists for sale. Choose from many different mediums. Vote for your favourite artist and you may win a gift card for the mall. April 29-May 5, during store hours, Tillicum Mall, 250.658.0435, studio30.ca. 2013 MFA Thesis exhibition: University of Victoria presents its 2013 MFA Thesis Exhibition, featuring works by Hilary Knutson, Chris Lindsay, Yang Liu and Paola Savasta. Opening reception May 3, 7-10 pm. May 3-11: weekdays 10 am–5 pm, weekends 1-5 pm, Visual Arts Building, University of Victoria, finearts.uvic.ca/ visualarts. oper a she saw: An original vocal movement piece created and performed by Lynda Raino, Cathy Fern Lewis and Denise Lieutaghi. This unique blend of voice theatre and dance will premiere in Victoria. May 3 at 8 pm; May 4 at 4 pm and 8 pm, The Metro Theatre, 250.388.5086. come to the music: Sooke Community Choir will be joined by Victoria’s Allegra Singers and Port Alberni’s Barkley Sounds Community Choir for this powerhouse matinee performance. May 4, 2-4 pm, Sooke Baptist Church, 7110 West Coast Rd, Sooke, 250.642.2773, sookecommunitychoir.com. paulo da costa: Commonwealth Prize Winner and Victoria resident Paulo da Costa launches The Green and Purple Skin of the World. Music: Dan Weisenberger on Portuguese guitar. Free public event. Book signing and refreshments. May 4, 3 pm, The Church of Truth, 111 Superior Street, 403.452.5662, paulodacosta.com.

Coupon Expires June 30, 2013


light sensitive: A photography exhibition by students in the professional photography and journalism/ photojournalism programs at the Western Academy of Photography. Reception May 10, 6-9 pm. May 9-16, Dales Gallery, 537 Fisgard Street, 250.383.1522, westernacademyofphotography.com. 70th swiftsure international yacht r ace: This festival draws the Pacific Northwest’s best racers and an international audience to Victoria. Not just for sailors, there are events for everyone. May 23-27, Victoria Inner Harbour, 250.592.9098, 2013.swiftsure.org. mt tolmie studio tour: The third annual Mt. Tolmie Studio Tour features five painters, a photographer, a potter, a ceramicist, and two silversmiths. May 25 and 26, 11 am to 3 pm, Mt Tolmie area — see website map, 250.477.8277, mtstudiotour.ca. the heavens and the earth: The international award-winning Victoria Children’s Choir, with esteemed guests Vox Humana, present a collection of classical and contemporary music united by themes of seasons, seas, and skies. May 27, 7 pm, Alix Goolden Hall, 250.721.0856, victoriachildrenschoir.ca.

Visit our website, blvdmag.ca, to submit arts event details online. Listings for the June issue must be received by May 8 to be considered for inclusion. 67


ODE TO THE OYSTER  by cinda chavich

“ He was a

bold man that first ate an oyster.” -Jonathan Swift

BC oysters are good to the last slurp Staring down into the somewhat slimy eye of a just-shucked oyster might well evoke Jonathan Swift’s observation that it took “a bold man” to take the first slurp. But tip one back and drink in that sweet, briny, fresh ocean flavour and you’ll surely be hooked. It’s the taste of the sea. And we have the very best right here on our doorstep. While Atlantic oysters (most notably the PEI Malpeque) are farmed in New Brunswick and PEI, the majority of oysters grown in Canada — about 70 per cent — are from the West Coast. “Bayne’s Sound is the oyster growing capital of Canada,” says Matthew Wright, executive director of the BC Shellfish Festival, an annual event celebrating the bivalve each June in Comox. “Our waters are pristine and our farmers produce oysters all year round — sending 20,000 oysters to market every week.” Dozens of edible species are cultivated worldwide, but in North America, two dominate: Crassostrea gigas and C. virginica. The Olympia (Ostreola conchaphila) is the only oyster species native to this coast, but it’s the frilly Pacific, a.k.a. Japanese, oyster (C. gigas) that’s farmed here, says Wright, and ends up on top tables around the world. Thanks to the BC coast’s plethora of growers and growing conditions, there are many unique varieties to try. Every type is a little different, whether it’s a melon-flavoured Chef Creek oyster; a smooth Kusshi from Deep Bay; the briny and fruity Cortes Island oyster; or the famed Fanny Bay beach oyster with its distinctive cucumber finish. The flavours are

all a result of the “merroir” — the salinity, mineral and nutrient variations the waters where the oysters live. Sizes are determined by diet, age, raising techniques (like tumbling), or whether they are suspended in water or grown on trays. For example, the popular Kusshi is tumbled aggressively to remove much of the “frilly” shell, making it smaller, smoother and easier to shuck. Farming oysters is completely sustainable — these filter feeders actually improve water quality by consuming algae. Oysters may be beach-grown — seeded as tiny spat right on a beach, like Mac’s brand from Fanny Bay — or suspended from rafts in deep water in trays or bags, like the Metcalfe Bay oysters grown off Denman Island. Deeper water usually means oysters feed on zooplankton (rather than phytoplankton, which feeds shallowwater oysters) a food source that adds a fresh melon flavour. Beach oysters tend to have shallow but harder shells, making for cleaner shucking, so deep water oysters are often harvested, then left on a beach to roll in the tides for six months to harden the shells.

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The annual BC Shellfish Festival runs the third weekend in June in Comox, with a special six-course chef’s dinner June 14 featuring six guest chefs and a full day of events June 15, including the Comox Valley Chowder Challenge and the BC oyster shucking championships.

how to find your favourites While all the variables are tough to deduce when you’re looking at a pile of oysters at the fish counter, Wright says every bag of oysters from the island comes with an identity tag that includes information about where and when they were harvested. Always ask the fishmonger for these details, then taste different oysters side by side — it’s the only way to learn which oyster you like best. Or, head off to an oyster bar like Ferris’ 69

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Upstairs and taste through their list. Depending on the day, you might be treated to the rich buttery flavour of a Hollie Wood oyster, a Sunshine Coast Golden Mantle, or an Outlandish oyster from Desolation Sound to finish. Like many spots, Ferris’ offers sherry mignonette or grated fresh horseradish with their raw oysters, but to really taste the individual nuances, first try them straight up.

not into raw? no problem Ferris’ offers a variety of baked oysters, too, which is the perfect solution for oysters that are just too big for slurping raw. Set in a bed of rock salt in the oven, oysters on the half shell can be topped with anything from the classic Rockefeller with pureed greens and Pernod to the creative concoctions they serve at Ferris’ — including Cornflakes with butter and thyme or creamy leeks with prosciutto and truffle oil. At Aura restaurant at the Inn at Laurel Point, chef Takashi Ito is partial to oysters, too, and serves them raw, on the half-shell, with tiny pipettes of citrusy yuzu mignonette to squeeze

on top. He’s a fan of the premium Satori from Hollie Wood Oysters on Denman Island, but always offers a variety of fresh BC specimens on his menu. Today the platter includes sweet and tiny Kusshi — “the beginner’s oyster” — and the meaty Effingham, “bigger, more for the oyster lover,” says Ito. Aura’s ambiance in the Zen garden overlooking the harbour is a good match for Ito’s beautiful, modern food. With his classical training and Japanese roots, he adds an Asian twist to local ingredients — like the braised shortrib flavoured with star anise and the localbeer-battered fish served with pommes frites and kimchi cucumber salad. But the crispy little oysters are a favourite, the shattering panko crust a perfect foil to the slivered burdock root and carrot salad, and a spicy hit of horseradish from electric green wasabi pea dust. Oysters have been feeding coastal people since prehistoric times. We’re lucky to live here, close to the finest oyster growing waters in the land. Go ahead: be bold and start slurping!

SHUCKING 101:  Place the oyster cup-side down on a folded kitchen towel  Wear a mesh or leather glove for protection while holding the oyster in place  Insert a short-bladed shucking knife into the hinge (the pointy end) of the oyster, where the top and bottom shells meet  Twist the knife to release the shells, then cut the abductor muscle and remove the top shell, being careful to keep any bits of shell out of the oyster while retaining the briny juices  Serve shucked oysters on a bed of crushed ice

Oysters & Champagne — Heaven. By Sharon McLean

There are some classic pairings that you don’t mess with. Raw oysters — with that glorious briny, salty taste — demand an assertive wine. And there’s nothing more assertive than a Blanc de Blancs Champagne. Most Champagnes are blends of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. Blanc de Blancs are made solely from Chardonnay — the lone white grape of the trio. Chardonnay brings crisp acidity, elegance and a degree of austerity to Champagnes, making Blanc de Blancs a perfect foil for oysters. One of my favourites is Le Mesnil, Grand Cru, Blanc de Blancs (Vintage Spirits, $70). The grapes come from one of the most famous vineyards in the region: the same vineyard that provides the grapes for Krug’s Clos

de Mesnil and Salon’s Brut Blanc de Blancs — both of which sell for $300400, when you can find them. This wine, from a local co-operative, is a killer deal and shows apples and pears intermingled with toasted brioche, nuts and a hint of toffee. For a purer fruit expression, try Lanson Black Label Brut (BCLDB $65). This blend of primarily Pinot Noir and Chardonnay also includes a touch of Pinot Meunier. Lanson is one of the oldest Champagne houses and its house style is based on suppressing malo-lactic fermentation, which gives a fresh, bright, clear fruit profile. For those who prefer a still wine, Chablis is another classic pairing. Chablis is at the north end of Burgundy, just south of Champagne. The wines are always Chardonnays

and have a distinct minerality that echoes the flavours of real oysters. The 2010 Drouhin Vaudon, 1er Cru, Vaillons (BCLDB $42) has the hallmark nose of citrus, green apple, white flowers, mushrooms and just a hint of the sea! Pan-frying the oysters and adding wasabi calls for a wine with a bit more body. The 2010 Bartier Scholefield, B.S. White (approx. $19) from the Okanagan is a refreshing blend of Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay with apricots, golden delicious apples and flowers. Or try a wine with a touch of sweetness, such as the 2009 Charles Sparr, Riesling, Mambourg Grand Cru Alsace (BCLDB $30) with crisp acidity and notes of spice, apricot, floral, diesel and orchard fruits.


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with WASABI PEA DUST, KINPIRA BURDOCK and TONKATSU MAYO From Executive Chef Takashi Ito of Aura restaurant comes this addictive combination, a crispy fried oyster served over a kinpira (sautéed and simmered) burdock root salad with spicy mayonnaise. Tonkatsu sauce is a Japanese condiment — a kind of Asian HP sauce. Look for it in Asian groceries along with fresh burdock, wasabi-coated dried green peas, and mirin.

Oysters: 6 fresh BC beach oysters, shucked sea salt freshly ground black pepper 4 tbsp. all-purpose flour 2 eggs, beaten with 1 tbsp. cold water 6 tbsp. panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) oil for frying Wasabi Dust: 4 tbsp. wasabi peas



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Tonk atsu Mayo: 2 tbsp. Tonkatsu sauce 2 tbsp. mayonnaise Kinpir a burdock: 100 g (¼ pound) burdock root 60 g (2 oz) carrots 1 tbsp. canola oil 2 tbsp. soy sauce 1 tbsp. mirin 5 tbsp. sugar 1 tsp. roasted sesame seeds 1 tbsp. sesame oil dash of cayenne pepper


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1. Scrub the burdock thoroughly or peel and place in a bowl of ice water with a splash of lemon juice to prevent browning. Julienne burdock and carrots and return to water. 2. In a sauté pan, heat the oil. Add the burdock, with a tablespoon of water, and sweat, covered, for 2 minutes. Add the carrots and cook for another minute. Stir in the sugar, mirin and soy sauce and simmer, stirring, until most of the liquid is absorbed and reduced. When the carrots are cooked, remove from heat and toss with sesame seeds and sesame oil. Sprinkle with cayenne pepper to finish. 3. In a food processor, whirl the wasabi peas to a fine dust. Set aside. Whisk together the tonkatsu sauce and mayonnaise until combined. Set aside. 4. Heat oil over medium high heat. Rinse the oysters well and pat dry on a paper towel. Season with sea salt and pepper. To bread the oysters, roll in flour, shaking off any excess, then dip in egg wash and roll in panko to coat. Fry the oysters until golden brown on both sides. 5. Serve the oysters on a bed of kinpira burdock, sprinkle with wasabi dust, and place the tonkatsu mayonnaise on the side for dipping.


PHOTOGRAPHY JOURNALISM © Georgia Johnston Grad 2010

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Crank up metabolism

slash set point

 by Shannon Moneo

No one gained weight because they ate too many green veggies

It’s been thought that a person’s set point — their genetically predisposed weight — is “set,” just as height and eye colour are. If you come from a family of sylphs, yours is supposedly a lean destiny. Stocky stock? To trim that weight, you eat less, but in response, your body boosts hunger levels and food cravings while slowing metabolism, all to keep that set point steadfast. Of late, medical, nutritional and exercise experts have found ways to lower set points using common-sense methods that enhance metabolism: healthy diet, exercise, enough sleep and not losing a lot of weight rapidly. The Harvard Medical School touts the “10% Solution.” Lose only 10 per cent of your weight at one go. That’s the amount you can drop before the body fights back. After keeping the weight off for six months, repeat the cycle, thereby resetting the set point once more. Such small, gradual changes in daily habits lead to a lowered set point that last a lifetime, say the Harvard physicians. Dr. Joey Shulman, nutritionist and author of 2012’s The Metabolism Boosting Diet, touts a “metabolic tune-up.” “Very few people can’t be fine-tuned,” she says from Toronto. “But it’s not caloriecounting. If you restrict calories, the body goes into deprivation mode.” So, what are the small changes that go into tweaking your metabolism?

DON’T SKIP BREAKFAST Eat breakfast within 30 minutes of rising. While sleeping, the body uses stored energy and if it isn’t fed after several hours of fasting, metabolism will slow, says Dr. Carrie Watkins, a Victoria-based naturopathic doctor. “You have to make sure your metabolism is stimulated or you go into starvation mode.” Eat lunch foods for breakfast to jumpstart metabolism. Avoid sugarbased foods, opting for quality protein such as hard-boiled eggs, unsweetened yogurt, cottage cheese or a protein shake as well as a high-fibre food.

EAT 5-6 SMALL MEALS DAILY The logic is that if six light meals/snacks, instead of three large meals, are consumed, metabolism will be stimulated throughout the day. The schedule, which must be consistent, stabilizes hunger, minimizes blood sugar fluctuations and decreases afternoon cravings, Watkins says. Both she and Shulman recommend breakfast, a mid-morning snack, lunch, mid-afternoon snack and supper. A post-supper snack is acceptable as long as it’s eaten two hours before bedtime, Watkins notes. 74

CONTROL HORMONES BY EATING MORE PROTEIN Getting hormones in check is mandatory because they control the effects of cortisol and insulin. An imbalance of the two shows up as stubborn belly fat, Shulman says. Glucagon, a hormone, is released in response to dietary protein like soy, hemp hearts, quinoa, cheese, lean meats, chicken, fish and protein powder. Glucagon tells fat cells to release fat into the blood so that it can be used rather than stored, Shulman says. Women should eat 85-140 g (3-5 oz), and men, 140-200 g (5-7 oz), of protein at each meal.


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GET ENOUGH SLEEP Seven to eight hours of quality sleep each night is optimal. “You want to give the body time to rest and restore,” Watkins says. And sleepdeprived people secrete more cortisol, which triggers fat storage, Shulman says. Too little sleep also increases production of the hunger hormone ghrelin and represses production of leptin, which dampens appetite. When those hormones are out of whack, you’ll crave sweet, junky foods and not be able to stop eating them. A recent test at the University of Colorado Sleep and Chronobiology Laboratory found that when

16 adults were limited to five hours of sleep each night for five days, they gained, on average, nearly two pounds, attributable to small breakfasts, night-time snacking and overeating of often high-carb and high-fat foods.

REDUCE FILLER FOODS/WHITE FLOUR AND SUGAR PRODUCTS These often-addictive foods cause most people to secrete too much insulin, which has the opposite effect of glucagon. A hormone that’s secreted from the pancreas, insulin helps glucose in the bloodstream reach our cells. When too much white sugar or white flour carb products are consumed, excess insulin is secreted to deal with the overload. Excess insulin is not good for metabolism. Instead, eat obliging carbs, which include brown rice, quinoa, buckwheat, steel-cut oats, and whole grain pastas and bread. Their increased fibre makes you full faster than refined carbs while hastening elimination. “The fibre piece is really important,” Watkins says.

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GREEN IS A GO Drink three to four cups of green tea each day, Shulman advises. EGCG (epigallocatechin-3gallate), an antioxidant in green tea, helps the body burn fat. The tea may also lower blood sugar by inhibiting enzymes that allow the absorption of starches, as well as reduce fat-absorption from the intestine, Shulman says. A study this year from Brazil’s University of Sao Paolo found that women who drank green tea and did resistance training for eight weeks had significant increases in their resting metabolic rate, lean body mass and muscle strength. They also showed significant decreases in body fat, triglycerides and waist circumference as compared to the group which did resistance training but took a placebo. And don’t forget green vegetables. “I encourage eating as many green vegetables as you want. No one gained weight because they ate too many green veggies,” Watkins says. Green produce is highfibre, nutrient-rich and has a low glycemic index, which means sugar enters the bloodstream slowly after eating, a metabolic plus.

SUPERIOR QUALITY RESIDENTIAL & COMMERCIAL BUILDERS EMBRACE HIGH-INTENSITY EXERCISE/STRENGTH TRAINING To crank up metabolism, the strength and conditioning co-ordinator at Victoria’s Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence strongly recommends high-intensity interval training. “You work at a high level and then you rest for a set period,” says Chris Hinton. An example is 30 seconds of all-out uphill running followed by a 90-second rest, with the sequence repeated for at least 20 minutes. Any aerobic activity that helps you gradually reach your maximum heart rate will work: running, cycling, stairclimber, rowing or hiking, says Hinton. The companion piece is strength training. “This is huge,” Hinton says. “It helps you cut out fat in the body and replace it with muscle, which needs to be fed calories.” The more muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn. Exercise is also an antidote to stress, which, left unchecked, affects hormones, which in turn can make lowering the set point a challenge, Shulman says.

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 By robert moyes

he magic began on the third morning. Camera buffs with tripods sporting bazookasized telephoto lenses had already staked out the best spots on our cruise ship’s foredeck. More casual observers crowded in beside them, armed with tiny digital cameras and binoculars. We’d arrived at Alaska’s renowned Glacier Bay National Park, a fjord draped in majestic, iceblue glaciers. Only two cruise ships are allowed in at once for a few hours each to allow passengers to fully absorb the 80

primordial beauty. Those overwhelmed by the silent splendour — or the cold — were soon seeking comfort from smiling stewards manning drink trolleys laden with liqueurs. Eventually my wife and I retreated to our cabin’s balcony to savour the show in private and plan the rest of our day, including which of several restaurants would receive our business that night. Would we follow that with a stroll through the casino en route to that snazzy little bar with its resident trio of

classical musicians? Or was it to be a spa night with a nightclub chaser? Welcome to life aboard the MS Oosterdam, one of many floating pleasure palaces that ply the run up to Alaska from May through September. For years, I had insisted to The True Companion that neither my age nor my girth corresponded to the classic cruise ship demographic. But age and waist size inevitably change. Now, I found myself churning northwards through the waters of the Inside Passage.

m oyes ph oto credit : ro bert

Changing Cruiser Demographics Cruise ships now attract a considerably younger clientele, with kid-friendly amenities on board and onshore excursions including kayaking, biking, hiking, and even snorkelling. The stereotype of cruisers as 300-pound gluttons only yanked to their feet by news that the lobster buffet had just received a refill of buttered crustaceans was taking a beating. Truth be told, the posh setting, elaborate entertainment,


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Alaska’s southernmost city attracts up to eight cruise ships a day, effectively doubling the town’s population.

and embarrassingly-eager-to-please crew — all 1,800 of them — were surprisingly easy on the nerves. Every morning a small “newspaper” delivered to our cabin listed several dozen activities for the day, including tours of the kitchen, card games and cooking classes. The hot ticket was the night’s Vegas-style entertainment in a huge, two-storey theatre: everything from surprisingly edgy stand-up comics to musical revues. The only constants were the stewards, relentlessly hawking cocktails paid for via your onboard ID/credit card. “Every drink’s free … until Sunday,” was an oft-heard quip, and doubtless many disembarking passengers were staggered when confronted by the bill for all the booze and other goodies — such as those glamorous $500 “flightseeing” helicopter tours of glaciers — they had so happily splurged on. 82

Beware the Tourist Rush Our daytime excursions brought us to charming cities like Juneau, the capital. If you had no patience for the inevitable lineup to get into the justly famed Red Dog Saloon, you could at least stick your head in the door to imbibe the atmosphere, including a sawdust-strewn floor and old-timey music tinkling out of a thumbtacked piano. After cruising the main street shops, a gondola ride to the hiking trails and interpretation centre perched above the town was a must-do. Despite the omnipresent reminders of Alaska’s fabled Gold Rush, the current Tourist Rush is more lucrative. Ketchikan, once billed as the salmon-canning capital of the world, has become even more adept at reeling in tourists. Alaska’s southernmost city attracts up to eight cruise ships a day, effectively doubling

the town’s population as 13,000 eager shoppers stream down gangplanks in search of anything from knick-knacks to diamonds and Aboriginal art. Forebears of those Russians that Sarah Palin so famously could see out her kitchen window had control of Alaska for a little over a century before selling it to the United States for $7.2 million in 1867. You can get a vivid sense of Alaska’s early Russian history in Sitka (originally named New Archangel). The local event centre presents daily displays of Russian folk dancing by a local troupe so good it tours internationally. The gorgeous surroundings include Mount Edgecumbe, an extinct volcano bearing an uncanny resemblance to Mount Fuji. Sitka is considered the rain capital of Alaska and locals have a tradition of “sun days” — snow days in reverse, where sunshine is an acceptable excuse to play hooky.


Fun Fact: Alaska is the only state to have coastlines on three different seas: the Arctic Ocean, Pacific Ocean and Bering Sea.

Prohibition and the Red Light District Ketchikan was my favourite town, especially Creek Street, where the houses perch on stilts above a narrow river. Trendy shops abound, but the real draw is the area’s infamous history as a red light district — which existed into the 1970s. The town’s most famous madam was Dolly, and her home is now a museum with a $5 admission (back in the day, it was a mere $3 for a less high-minded visit). I felt a small surge of national pride when I discovered that, during Prohibition, Canadian bootleggers in speedboats would glide underneath these houses of ill repute and offload boxes of whisky through overhead trapdoors. Our best-value excursion was in Ketchikan, a so-called “duck tour” in one of those lumbering amphibious vehicles that comes complete with a witty tour guide. It was 90 minutes of saucy social history, a lot of which centred on the town’s 30 brothels. More culturally uplifting was a trip to the Totem Heritage Center, a rare collection of totem poles collected from abandoned Tlingit and Haida villages. Back home, life seemed a bit, well, ordinary: no “pre-breakfast” left outside the bedroom door, and no singers and dancers eager to entertain us after dinner. I even missed those stewards who had tried to sell me drinks at every occasion. But I’m now part of the “cruiser community,” judging by all the catalogues that keep thudding through the mail slot. Don’t get me wrong, my Scottish heart is still not won over by the cushy, onboard lifestyle. That said, I’ve got my eye on a sybaritic, seven-day jaunt through the Caribbean next fall. I’m thinking it’ll be looking pretty darned attractive when the leaves start to turn. Robert Moyes is a local author and arts writer who occasionally slips the leash and travels to distant ports of call (which he then writes about).

My goal is to help you reach yours.

Looking for timely market insights? Consider a complimentary subscription to my monthly Letter to Clients. Roderick MacMillan, B.Comm (Hons) FSCI, CSWP Investment Advisor TD Waterhouse Private Investment Advice 1070 Douglas Street, 5th Floor Victoria, B.C. 250-356-4148 rod.macmillan@td.com www.rodmacmillan.com TD Waterhouse Private Investment Advice is a division of TD Waterhouse Canada Inc., a subsidiary of The Toronto Dominion Bank. TD Waterhouse Canada Inc. – Member of the Canadian Investor Protection Fund. The TD logo and other trademarks are the property of the Toronto Dominion Bank, as a wholly-owned subsidiary in Canada and/or other countries.


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$7,900,000 Deedrie Ballard 250-744-3301 deedrieballard.com

Boulevard magazine supports southern vancouver Island's top realtors representing the region's finest real estate. In our pages, we hope you will find your next home, whether it is in the listings of the Great Homes/Great Realtors or here in the Boulevard Luxury Real Estate listings. both of these monthly advertising features bring you the finest selection of homes and condominiums victoria has to offer. $5,400,000 Terry Stockus 250-477-1100 century21.ca

$3,500,000 Terry Stockus 250-477-1100 century21.ca

Magnificent Uplands Waterfront home. Luxurious & elegant, this home has been completely updated & is situated on a spectacular secluded bay. Main floor with living room, library, dining room, kitchen with & family room - all with access to the expansive heated patio w/ fireplace that spans the length of the home. The upper floor features the master suite incl. powder room, walk in closet, sitting area including fireplace & balcony to enjoy the views.

This magnificent James Grieve design captures the splendour of the English Cotswolds. The 1.8 acre gated manor comprising of 2 separate land parcels that have been combined since 2002 into an exquisite estate that is extremely rare.. A 5300 sq.ft Main House, 2000 sq.ft Guest house, 2 Boathouses all with ocean views. Enjoy all day sun, decks and 280 feet of shoreline. The finest construction and finishing materials have been used, all executed by local artisans... attention to detail is evident throughout the home.

Built in 2004, this incredible 3 acre property is a family haven for those looking for the ultimate experience in lakefront living. Crafted by local artisans, the 4,100 sq.ft log home exudes tremendous pride of workmanship. The property is complete with Guest Cottage, suite above garage, RV parking, tennis/ paddleball court and so much more! 3,000 sq.ft of deck and patio space lends itself to fabulous summer entertaining! An extra 2-car garage with 1 bed suite above is ideal for the nanny or young adult.


Oak Bay Family Estate.

$2,785,000 Julie Rust 250-477-1100 julierust.ca

$2,349,000 Lisa Williams 250-514-1966 lisawilliams.ca

Timeless Oak Bay Family Home... 5 beds/ 6 baths situated on an expansive .78 Acres property high above the rest, in the Heart of Oak Bay. With almost 7000 Sqft, it has been completely renovated to the highest standards by Maximilian Huxley. Be one of the first to see this rare offering. Call Julie to View! www.2290woodlawn.com

COUNTRY ESTATE! Gorgeous new 6000sqft. 5 bed/ 5 bth home on 2 flat & fully useable acres in Deep Cove! Dramatic & impressive design & finishing, sumptuous master suite, grand entertaining areas, incredible kitchen, media & exercise rms & so much more! Detached 538sqft ‘coach house’ or private office PLUS new 3500 sqft barn that can be configured for horses, carcollecting or whatever your needs! MLS 322026

Now and then a residence comes to market which is exceptional, a place full of character and soul. The water views from this home are magnificent and no detail has been overlooked in this home’s creation. This approx. 3000 sq. ft. residence is a fusion of two separate condos which have evolved into one fabulous $1,550,000 home, offering many and varied principal areas, a master bedroom graced with a fireplace Magdalin Heron and separate dressing room, a 250-656-0911 heron@holmesrealty.com guest bedroom, four beautifully appointed bathrooms, and an old world styled kitchen.

$2,575,000 Leslee Farrell 250-388-5882 lesleefarrell.com

This executive luxury residence adjoins the Victoria Golf Club greens, enjoying spectacular ocean views to the Olympics & Mt. Baker! Masterfully designed, this gem of a home is ideal for a couple or smaller family, offering 3 bedrooms & den. The main flr is designed for entertaining, opening to an impressive patio. The upper flr offers a unique ocean view master suite with his & her closets + separate ensuite baths, fireplace & balcony! Included is a wine cellar & bonus garden house.

Stunning Ocean Views.

$1,875,000 Julie Rust 250-477-1100 julierust.ca

$1,200,000 Nancy Vieira 250-514-4750 nancyvieira.com

An amazing opportunity to live on Beach Drive in South Oak Bay. This 4 Bed+Den “move in ready” home was completely renovated in 2008 by Houston Homes. Features over 4200 Sqft, Beautiful Hardwood Floors & Quality Finishes, Stunning Master Bedroom with Unobstructed Ocean Views & almost a 13,000 sqft Oak Bay Property. Make this your home today!


Worthy of being considered in a class by itself, extraordinary oceanfront private 3 acre estate lot in exclusive Silver Spray Resort just west of Victoria. Most desirable waterfront lot in resort, coveted by the owner developer. More than 500 feet of private waterfront enjoy breathtaking sunsets and views to Juan de Fuca Straight and Olympic Mountains. Private pathway to an enchanting peninsula with a secluded pocket beach. Subdividable property.

We, the lawyers at stevenson doell law Corporation, have experienced staff that specialize in real estate, Wills & estates, Family law & ICbC claims. For help, call bob doell, brent Kitzke, Mary McManus, Heather sweeney & Mark Walton at 250-388-7881.



This new 4405 sq/ft, 5 bedroom home boasts quality workmanship and attention to detail - custom kitchen and bathroom cabinetry, quartz countertops, professional Electrolux appliances, 6 burner propane cook top, wall oven, Teak hardwood, heated tile floors and custom Pella windows with built in blinds, 3 fireplaces and pantry. Panoramic views of Victoria, the ocean and the mountains while sitting on the huge main level deck or in your sunken outdoor hot tub on the lower deck This home has it all!

Simply Beautiful Victorian Queen Ann style, legal triplex w/ designated Heritage status. Your main floor features a 2bedroom suite w/ gas f/p., in suite laundry & a garden area, plus funky bachelor’s suite. You will love the fabulous two level owner’s suite that’s been completely redone & features three $999,900 bdrms., formal living & dining rooms, eat-in kitchen w/ cork Kyle Kerr flooring, s/s appliances, its 250-590-1775 own laundry, a private roof homesalesvictoria.com top deck w/Ocean Views & barbecue area. Spectacular!!

Situated perfectly in North Saanich this 2005 built Custom Home is sure to please. Offering over 5300 sq ft w/ 8 beds, 5 baths, 2 kitchens, 2 propane f/p’s over 3 flrs, it has everything a large/extended family could want. Large master bedrm on main w/ 5 piece ensuite & heated flrs. Downstairs feats 2nd kitchen, 3 bedrooms, & theatre room. Two $999,900 double garages leave plenty of room for the toys, & a .99acre Kyle Kerr lot w/ a heated outdoor pool 250-590-1775 homesalesvictoria.com give you lots of space to play with them. Priced 82K below assesment for a quick sale.

Arguably the premier residence in the prestigious Ten Mile Point gated community of Wedgewood Estates. This PENTHOUSE condo offers the absolute best in “one level” living, offering stunning panoramic ocean views and mountain vistas in almost every direction. At approx 2500 S/F, you’ll find two master BR’s each with its own en suite, separate den, gorgeous living, dining, family room, all with expansive windows to let in the natural light. Open the doors and step out onto almost 1,000 S/F of private, sun drenched deck.

$1,099,900 George Papaloukas 250-888-5335 sothebysrealty.ca

Immaculate and MoveIn Ready; no renovations required in this beautiful home. Windows stretch right across, there is no lack of light and sunshine. The owners have recently renovated the kitchen, Kitchen Craft design cabinetry and marble counter tops, stainless appliances including natural gas cook $929,000 top & oven. Tiled roof, triple Sharen Warde & Larry Sims garage, sprinkler system & full landscaped. Great spot 250-592-4422 for exercise with trails & wardesims.com tennis courts at your door.

$995,000 Jordy Harris 250-385-2033 jordyharris.com

$889,000 Nancy Vieira 250-514-4750 nancyvieira.com

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Escape to East Sooke! Custom European home set on 3 plus water front acres, panoramic vistas of Sooke Basin surrounded by older forest. Enjoy views from your spacious entertainment sized deck over looking the lily pond. Home was built by old world schooled European Master wood craftsman. The feature fire place is the heart of the home. Area is nicely fenced off to protect your flourishing gardens from wild life.



$859,950 Cassie Kangas 250-477-7291 cassiekangas.com

$765,000 Melina Boucher 250-385-2033 melinaboucher.ca


250-744-3301 dallaschapple.com

This brand new 4/5 bedroom executive home is located on a private “no through street” in Gordon Head. 2955sq ft of quality construction & finishing, the house sits on a large lot with South facing back yard. Main floor has an open plan kitchen, dining & living room plus separate den and rec room with en-suite. 4 beds upstairs including a fabulous master suite with en-suite & walk in closet. Attached double garage. Close to buses, schools & parks MLS: 320891.

AFFORDABLE WATERFRONT! Enchanting property located in a private setting & featuring 2 floors of 2586 sq ft, 4 beds & 3 baths. Breathtaking views of the Gorge waterway where you can launch your kayak straight from your beach! The renovated kitchen, dining and living rooms have oversized windows & french doors that lead onto a beautiful deck. Add to this package suite potential, a double garage, workshop & a completely move-in ready home. Discover what quality truly means with this valuable gem.

3rd floor south facing end suite with wonderful ocean & mountain views. Nine ft ceilings, upgraded bathrooms, new designer kitchen in 2007 with Bosch appliances & quartz counters. Outstanding layout with spacious entrance, a bedroom at each end with full ensuite, & two-sided gas fireplace in living to family room. Two parking spots, steel & concrete bldg with excellent maintenance & mgmt. Steps to waterfront, walk to downtown along the seawall.

$859,000 George Papaloukas 250-888-5335 sothebysrealty.ca

$758,800 Ivan Delano P.R.E.C. 250-744-8506 ivandelano.com

$679,900 Under Construction 250-883-2715 200douglas.com

Shawnigan Lake Waterfront. This south facing property means all day sun, even in winter! Custom built in 2010, with approximately 2900 sq.ft. on 3 levels. This home has 4 bedrooms, 3 full bathrooms, and a lower level walkout to the lake. Granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, custom cabinetry, fir floors, and travertine tile within floor heating. Relax and enjoy the views of the lake from the deck, lakeside patio, or the new dock. This home is ready for you to move in and enjoy!

Beautiful NEW home in the middle of the city. Spacious Low maintenance living with all the conveniences are featured in this custom built home w/ a great floor plan, lovely kitchen w/ bar eating area, dining & living room with gas fireplace opening onto a generous private patio for entertaining. Upstairs you’ll find 3 more good bedrooms, laundry, 4 piece bath + a generous master bdm w/ a walk-in closet + exquisite bath. Garage + bonus room above great for kids/office/ or man cave round out this home on a lovely lot.

A rare chance to own a stunning suite at 200 Douglas on the park... Beacon Hill Park. This 1240 sf SE 2 bdrm+den/2 bath corner suite is one of just 38 luxurious residences in a 6 storey reinforced concrete building. It boasts floor-toceiling windows, over height ceilings, custom open kitchen, spa inspired bathrooms plus many more exceptional features all in a location that is second to none.




BRAND NEW BC HYDRO POWERSMART GOLD HOME WITH 2-5-10 Warranty. Beautiful, spacious and bright custom home. Quartz Countertops and maple cabinets, 8’ Ebony Entry Door, Paver Driveway. Master Bedroom has vaulted ceilings, walk in closet, 6’ Jacuzzi tub in master ensuite. Open concept with 18’ ceiling in entry and $679,888 living area. Gas Fireplace, Range, Furnace and BBQ Manpreet Kandola outlet. Economical heat pump. 250-813-1705 Minutes from Royal Oak and manpreetkandola@gmail.com Broadmead, in a coveted neighborhood. MLS # 321233

$638,000 Ivan Delano P.R.E.C. 250-744-8506 ivandelano.com

$598,000 Ian Lindsay 250-248-1071 ianlindsay.ca

NEW Beautiful Show home Ready & waiting for you to enjoy in this enclave of quality custom built residences. Rancher Style Living + Bonus Lower level with loads of extra room & Possibilities - Just outside Victoria and a 20 minute ferry away from Sidney & the Victoria Airport, you’ll find that there are world class schools, golf, boating, lakes near by and some of the best nature and hiking trails around. Executive living in a sub-urban location, worth a closer look, NO HST HERE

Lovely mini acreage located across from waterfront and minutes to Qualicum Village Centre. Walk the beaches, visit the nearby estuary or take it easy on your personal 2.47 acres. The West Coast design home offers flexibility. Private master suite upstairs, guest and 3rd bedroom on main. Comfortable living and dining rooms are great for entertaining. Bright kitchen opens to sunny south facing patio and deck area. Added bonus of office or guest suite above garage. Enjoy gardening, the beach and great West Coast living. Call today.

$659,900 Peter Veri 250-920-6850 peterveri@gmail.com

$625,000 Margaret Leck 250-413-7171 margaretleck.com

$469,000 Melina Boucher 250-385-2033 melinaboucher.ca

It all starts here at The Finishing Store. With an extensive selection of floors, moldings, mantels, doors, stairs, closets and windows we’ve got your renos covered!

Exceptional value in upper Sunny Panorama, In an area with no overhead wires to obstruct your enjoyment of the quiet surroundings. This spacious home will appeal to every family member, with surprising privacy! Inviting Living room with Gas FP and soaring vaulted ceiling is sure to impress. Spacious Family Room, offers privacy and gas FP as well. Formal Dining room. Chefs kitchen, with tons of storage and counter space. Cutting edge Stainless Steel appliances.

Desirable end unit at Port Royale Estates! High on the hillside overlooking the development to views of Brentwood Bay, the marina and mountains. Adult living with secured entrance to the complex. Vaulted ceilings in both the living room & dining room, provide a spacious/airy feeling. Enjoy your morning coffee on the 200sqft covered deck off the kitchen. Extra large main level master bedroom with 5 pc ensuite and walk-in closet. Enjoy a den or 2nd bedroom with outlook to the private courtyard.

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Be romanced by one of the most charming homes on the market! Original character abounds with a formal entryway, original wood staircase, stained glass, and a sunny country kitchen. Upper floor has 3 bedrooms and a back deck to enjoy morning coffee. Enjoy the large south facing back yard, perfect for kids who like to run & climb. Gardeners will love the lovely weeping willow & fruit trees. Entertain off the back deck. Exceptional curb appeal!

250.412.3824 www.finishingstore.com

$471,750 Tara Hearn 250-588-2852 tarahearn.com

One of the finest remaining oceanfront lots at Silver Spray Oceanfront Estates! This fabulous Ocean Park Place address offers full southern exposure, exceptional views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and snow-capped Olympic Mountains, and a trail down to your own private rocky shore. Set in a small cove the shore is protected from crashing surf. This gently sloping, low bank estate lot is ideal for your luxurious oceanfront dreamhome.


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estate Thinking of selling your home? Here’s a few reasons wHy a realtor Helps: • You’ll likely get a higher price and sell faster • Your home will get wider exposure • A Realtor knows how to market your home and show it at its best • A Realtor knows various financing options • A Realtor can write legally binding contracts tips for selling your Home: • Keep the garden tidy and the lawn trim • Paint or freshen the exterior and repair anything broken • Give the home a thorough cleaning and remove all clutter inside • Make kitchens and bathrooms especially clutter-free, bright and spotless • Air the home well

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by Tess van Straaten

 illustrations by pip knott

featuring Elizabeth Cull


s BC’s first female finance minister, Elizabeth Cull had the often impossible job of trying to balance the province’s books. For the past 11 years, she’s used that experience to help grow her own business, expanding from one Dig This store to five high-end gardening franchises on Vancouver Island. Tess van Straaten sat down with Cull in her flagship Oak Bay store to see how the business has beaten the odds in an increasingly tough retail market.

 The last few years have been really hard in retail. What keeps you up at night? It’s been very, very challenging for small businesses really struggling to make a go of it these days. We’re all trying to figure out what to do to engage more sales and more customer loyalty, so that’s what really keeps me up at night.  So how do you succeed in a tough economy? I don’t think there’s a silver bullet. Unless you’re in a part of retail that’s growing — selling iPads perhaps — there’s no magic formula. What it boils down to is you have to decide what you’re good at and focus on those things, which might mean letting some other things go, even if they’re near and dear to you. I had to cut gardening books. When I first started to order them I was like a kid in a candy store. Now I stock less than 10 titles, but I actually make more money from books than I did when I bought all those titles I lusted after. You have to focus on your core business — that has to be number

one — and you have to do that even better than you did it before.

 Where do you see the economy now? I think there’s more consumer confidence this year than the past couple of years and that’s encouraging. People are looking for value but they’re also looking for an experience. They may go to the big box store to buy toilet paper and save money, but when it comes to things like gardening they want to see more than boxes on shelves. They want to be able to talk to someone who knows what they’re doing, who has a passion for it, and can help them.

 What did being BC’s finance minister teach you about managing money? What I learned is that it always sounds

so easy to say, “we’ll just trim expenditures by five per cent.” How hard can that be? But when you started to look at it you find there are only a small number of things you can actually cut without having a negative impact. You could cut staffing but that has an impact on your ability to provide great customer service, so you don’t want to do that.

 What was your biggest mistake? Spreading myself too thin. I started with one store and the opportunity came up to expand to two stores I own and three franchise stores, but do the math: If I worked a five-day week, I’d only be in each of my stores two-and-a-half days a week — plus all the franchise work, like feeding the website, searching for new products and training. One thing I’d do

 What’s been your most important money lesson? To stay on top of things! Understand what your expenses are and where your money is going. Whether it’s a paycheque or investment income, you need to pay attention to the details.


south island boulevard ad green h.indd 1

1/7/13 12:12:42 PM


David Dare 250-883-5763 roadsend.ca


differently would be to grow more slowly. Two stores isn’t just twice the work, it’s exponential.

 Your son’s an investment banker with JP Morgan in San Francisco. What’s the most important thing you taught him about money? I think the most important thing I taught him, not necessarily about money, is to dream big. City planner Daniel Burnham famously said, “Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men’s blood,” and I think I passed that on to my son. Don’t be afraid to take some What it boils risks, but do your homework.

down to is you have to decide what you’re good at and focus on those things, which might mean letting some other things go, even if they’re near and dear to you.

 What was your biggest win? The best decision I’ve made is to hire and keep really phenomenal women in the store. One has been here 18 years, longer than I’ve owned it, and another has been with me since the start. The long-term staff are really the strength of the business because collectively, we know so much about the store, its products and our community. Finding and keeping those people, especially in retail where turnover is high, would have to be my best decision.

 What would you do with a $100,000 windfall? I’d put up deer fencing all around my garden! I always say if I win the lottery that’s what I would do. Beyond that, I’m 61 so I think I would make an investment in the business to pass it along to a younger, more energetic person and focus on what I want to do with the last quarter of my life. I’m not ready to retire; I have another chapter yet.

 You’ve had five careers so far (community planner, educator, consultant, politician and business owner). What’s your best business advice? Trust your gut and keep in mind rules are meant to be broken, both in gardening and in life. Plants often surprise us and flourish where they’re not supposed to and life is often more fun and more interesting when you break some of the rules and try things a different way. Small business in 2013 is not for the faint of heart — coming through the recession was really hard, but as stressful as it was, we still had fun. At the end of the day, if you’re not having fun, you’re in the wrong place. This interview has been condensed and edited. Tess van Straaten is an award-winning journalist, television personality and fourth-generation Victoria native. 93


Retro Chic Rides Rule the Roadway  By stuart eastwood

Automobile design is influenced by subtleties first realized during the Industrial Revolution. Manufacturers strive to give their products an advantage by appealing to our intellectual, emotional, and esthetic needs. When a design is very good it becomes stylish. FIAT, Volkswagen, and Mini have enjoyed previous success in creating cars that evoke an emotional commitment with their owners. Drawing from this success, these companies have developed modern versions of their beloved vehicles. Combining classic good looks with economy, environmental responsibility, and safety, these cars also remind us that driving can still be fun. Shall we have a look?

The Return of Herbie! Boomers grew up with Volkswagen Beetles. Our parents had one, we had one, or we knew someone who did. The car’s popularity saw it recognized in 1972 as the world’s most produced car, and by the end of production, 21 million examples had been built. Time and technology dated the Beetle, and it was replaced by the new generation Rabbit and Golf. Inspired by its own motoring heritage, Volkswagen introduced the New Beetle in 1997 — the first entrant into the retro-futurist design market. Departing from tradition, the car’s engine is now in the front, the space in the rear now given to luggage. A styling update for 2013 has resulted in

the best-looking version of the Beetle to date. Volkswagen has given the car an unexpected and sporty persona which should help the car appeal to a wider customer base. Where MINI and FIAT offer fun, hip, and trendy interiors, to good effect, the Beetle’s interior is more conservative. Tasteful materials and restrained design create a cabin that is nicely accomplished. Three engine choices are offered: 2.5-litre, 2.0-litre TSI turbocharged, and a 2.0-litre TDI Clean Diesel. Depending on engine choice, gear selection is either by a fiveor six-speed manual, or by six-speed automatic. Volkswagen Beetle pricing starts at $22,175.

After a long absence, Fabbrica Italiana Automobili Torino (FIAT) returns to the Canadian market in style. Drawing inspiration from the Cinquecento (500) produced between 1957 and 1975, the new 500 is an attractive and clever take on the Italian motoring icon. Despite modest dimensions, the cabin provides comfortable, cheerful accommodation. The rear seats are a bit tight, but most owners will likely use the seats for additional storage. Controls and ancillary switches are intuitively placed and logically marked. A willing 1.4-litre engine producing 101 horsepower drives the front wheels through a choice of a five-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission. The 500 is agile and entertaining to drive, and will appeal to those looking for a car combining economy with a large dose of fun. Available in Pop, Sport, Lounge and Abarth models, FIAT pricing runs from $15,995 to $29,570. 94

ValeStock / Shutterstock.com

La Dolce Vita

f9photos / Shutterstock.com

When you learn the Wallace Way every student receives highway instruction and negotiates the majority of the top ten fatal crash site intersections.

British Invasion Redux A conversation about superlative British design will include red telephone boxes, Routemaster buses, and the brilliant Mini. From its 1959 introduction, the Mini quickly became popular with those shaping the culture of the Swinging ‘60s — Mary Quant even named the miniskirt for her favourite make of car. Enjoyed by celebrities and everyday motorists, the Mini became the first classless car. Placing the engine transversely across the car, designer Alec Issigonis created a car just three metres long that was able to carry four adults comfortably. The new MINI (capitals are used to describe it) entered the market in 2003 and is a respectful and

fashionable interpretation of the beloved original. Contemporary expectations resulted in a car larger and heavier than the original, but the 1.6-litre motor makes up the difference. Its six gears can be shifted manually or automatically. The interior will delight many and confuse a few. The traditional centremounted speedometer remains, with a tachometer directly in front of the driver. Quirky placement of some ancillary controls makes the MINI completely involving. A wide range of MINI brand car accessories, such as clothes and travel bags, complete the MINI experience. MINI pricing runs from $23,950 to $36,900.

The success enjoyed by these retro-futurist cars suggests that other models might be worth considering. A modern Volkswagen Van perhaps? Built to the dimensions of Mazda’s 5, it would be an interesting entry in the cute-ute market, particularly in a Westfalia Edition. Strap a surf board to the roof and head to Long Beach. Perhaps a MINI Moke? Or a FIAT Jolly? The possibilities for retro chic are endless.


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three chirps for


 By anne mullens  ILLUSTRATION SHELLEY DAVIES May 4th, just so you know, is International Chicken Appreciation Day. It is supposed to be marked by something like hugging a chicken and thanking her for her species’ service to humankind. I say “her” because I wouldn’t recommend trying to hug a rooster. The more cynical, i.e. a Facebook group, recommends celebrating by eating chicken for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I will mark the day, however, by toasting the memory of our family’s one-time trio of laying hens. No way in the world would we have ever consumed Rita, Penny, and Lucy, a.k.a. “The Girls,” for a meal. They were functional family pets, as beloved as our dog, but useful, too, gobbling up kitchen scraps (spaghetti a favourite), eating pests and weeds from our Fairfield yard, and producing a rich guano to amend the soil of our backyard vegetable patch. In short, they were a perfect organic eco-cycle in the shape of three bustling, chatty hens.


the freshest eggs around And oh, their daily eggs. The yolks were so orange, from their free-range diet of grubs, weeds and grass, that at first our two daughters balked at eating French toast the colour of a safety vest. The taste difference from an insipid grocery store egg to The Girls’ robust creations was the gustatory equivalent of going from black and white to technicolour. The Girls were beautiful, too. Rita was a Plymouth Rock, her black and white stripes like an escapee from a 1930s prison. Penny was a ravishing Rhode Island Red. And Lucy was a coal black we-don’t-know-what (Australorp or small Jersey Giant?), who flashed an iridescent greeny-blue in the sun. “What’s the common link for their names?,” we’d test visitors. The sharpest would fire back, correctly: “Beatles’ Songs!” As diehard city folk, my husband and I were unlikely urban farmers, but once we learned about the city’s favourable bylaws for hens, and met a few flocks in the neighbourhood, I began to covet my own — especially those eggs. In the winter of 2000 I designed and had built a modest chicken coop. On a cool April day we went out to a Saanich farm to buy three newly-hatched chicks.

watching the girls (and my girls) grow up We set up a heat lamp over a cardboard box in our dining room for a month until The Girls reached chicken adolescence (a mottled stage of mixed plumage as ungainly for poultry as it is for humans). Kate and Madeline spent every spare minute beside the box, the chicks often falling asleep tucked into the crooks of Kate’s arms. My girls learned first hand the theory of “imprinting” as the chicken girls would thereafter comically follow my girls, Kate in particular, wherever they roamed. For three years, we had a pretty idyllic existence. The Girls would let out distinctive screeches and squawks, followed by excited chattering each day to let us know their eggs were laid. Nothing quite matches cradling three still-warm, perfectlyformed jewels of nature and walking inside to make an omelette. But despite gifts of eggs, our neighbours weren’t so enamoured of The Girls. Lucy, for one, was a flier, and easily cleared our six foot fence. “Anyone seen a black chicken?” we’d say, wandering the neighbourhood. Once found she’d happily tuck into Kate’s arms or follow her back home. But one too many times Lucy ate our neighbour’s precious succulent plants. And then, when a family of rats moved into the basement of the big house on the other side, the exterminator pointed to The Girls’ grain as one of the lures. The neighbours on both sides asked us kindly to find a more rural home for our flock. One tearful August day, we stood on our sidewalk as friends retrieved The Girls and their coop to transfer them to a Salt Spring farm, where we heard they lived out their days. Or at least don’t want to learn otherwise. I vow to someday have a small flock again. But for this May 4th, does anyone have a chicken I can come and hug? 97


By shannon moneo photo by gary mckinstry

 With the first name “Barrie,” are people surprised you’re female? My name comes from my mother’s favourite cousin, a male. Once, I was trying to deposit a cheque and the teller kept telling me I couldn’t unless it was a joint account. I finally said, “I am Barrie.” She was surprised.

 How do you plan the year for a 245-hectare garden? There’s a rhythm. We know at certain times of year to do specific things. We always have new projects. You walk around and mentally you’re always planning. Because it’s the Garden’s 100th anniversary, we’ve done special plantings.

 When did you know you wanted a gardening career? I was always interested but it never occurred to me you could do it for a living. I came from the Salmon Arm area but I worked for a year in a L’Arche community for the mentally handicapped in Ireland, gardening with residents. Suddenly it all crystallized: I was really enjoying the gardening aspect. I needed a year’s experience to get into horticultural college, so I worked in part of the estate of Ballywalter Park, then attended horticultural college in Northern Ireland. I returned to Ballywalter Park from 1979 to 1983. When I came back to Canada I worked in nurseries, then taught in the horticultural program at Vancouver Island University. I have been at Royal Roads for 14 years. It is sort of full circle — starting at a large country estate, and, I hope, finishing at one.

 Do deer remain a problem? They’re definitely an issue. There are a lot of predators here: mink, otters, the odd cougar, eagles, owls. Deer are controlled by a fence in the main gardens. The rest of the property, any plantings we do must be deer resistant or not so tasty.

 In its early days, Hatley Park had 100 gardeners. How many today? What they had were Chinese labourers, who did most of the work and lived in a village at the top of the property. Today, we have 13 gardeners.

 How many weddings do you have each year? 30 to 40. The setting alone attracts weddings. You can see the sea; on a clear day, you can see the mountains. The architecture is lovely.  What do you love about gardening? The process. I like the soil, getting things ready. Growing from seed is very satisfying. You have to think long-term. We have to think, what is going to happen 100 years from now? Is this going to be the right place for it? You have to be very optimistic.  In each season, what is your favourite plant? In early spring, it’s simple flowers: snowdrops, hellebores. The wisteria in the Italian Garden is gorgeous in May. The Rose Garden is incredible — just the smell and beauty of the

blooms. I love the autumn leaf colour. In the winter, I like the forest. You don’t need glaring colour all the time. You can wait for spring. It’s anticipation.  What should people be doing in their garden right now? Think about annual plantings, but wait until the long weekend to plant because you can still get coolish nights. Plant shrubs and hardy stuff — broad beans and peas. Mulching keeps the weeds down.  What do you do when you’re not gardening? I knit. My grandmother taught me. I’d knit Aran sweaters at the drop of a hat. Then I decided to knit socks, probably 15 pair a year.  Apparently, you were also a nimble gatekeeper. When I worked in Ireland, part of my job was looking after the gatehouse. I was forever forgetting my keys so I climbed these big wrought iron gates wearing a dress and heels. I got really good at it. I knew I was getting older when I went back for a visit and realized I wasn't as good at it anymore.  What do you do with dirt-stained hands? For a long time I didn’t even notice. My nails were filthy. Doing dishes without gloves usually cleans them or there’s little plastic brushes you can buy at Lee Valley.  What does your garden at home look like? Do I have to answer that? I’ve got a big hedge, which hides the disaster. This interview has been condensed and edited.

BARRIE AGAR, 57 Head Gardener, Hatley Park at Royal Roads University






As high-school friends who reconnected only a year ago through Facebook, Michael Chiuten John and Eloise Roa Rama have found that technology has a way of bringing people together. Their new Lexus ES 350 does just that. Michael has been in Victoria since 1996 and, though Eloise is planning on joining him here this summer, she is currently based in New York. This means that they are constantly talking on the phone. With the ES 350, that conversation can keep going: as soon as Michael steps into the car, his phone automatically connects to Bluetooth. Michael and Eloise shopped around before choosing the ES 350. Its styling, features, and price won them over in the end. Many luxury sedans look boxy, but the ES 350 has a low profile and an aggressive

2013 LEXUS ES 350

front grille that set it apart from its peers. “They’ve balanced luxury with sportiness,” explains Michael. Its competitive price means that they could get luxury features without sacrificing affordability. And the ES 350 has more than its share of luxury features. One that really called to Michael, in addition to the Bluetooth, was the premium sound system. “I love music, so that was important,” says Michael. Eloise loves the next-generation safety features like the backup camera. Add those to the keyless entry, push button start, and navigation system, and Michael and Eloise feel spoiled with gadgets. “We can’t go back to older technology, now,” they joke. Thankfully, with the build quality of Lexus and expert service from Metro Lexus, they won’t have to.

2013 Lexus ES 350 Nicely equipped from $41,495

Includes Freight and Pre-Delivery Inspection.



Profile for Boulevard Magazine

Boulevard Magazine - May 2013 Issue  

Boulevard Magazine is designed to capture the personality, culture and vitality that is Vancouver Island by focusing on the Arts, People, Tr...

Boulevard Magazine - May 2013 Issue  

Boulevard Magazine is designed to capture the personality, culture and vitality that is Vancouver Island by focusing on the Arts, People, Tr...