Page 1

Journey for Sight Raises Money Despite Cold

Indecent Assault Charges Dropped Against Ste. Anne Mayor By Marianne Curtis The Crown has decided to drop its case against Ste. Anne’s Mayor who had been accused of indecently assaulting a child nearly 50 years ago. Defence lawyer Hymie Weinstein said the case against Ste. Anne Mayor Bernard Vermette was dropped after the Crown reviewed its files and Vermette showed evidence that cleared his name. Seventy-four year old Vermette was charged last September after a woman alleged she had been assaulted in 1966 when she was nine years old. He would have been in his twenties at the time. St. Pierre-Jolys RCMP began their investigation in May 2012, arrested Vermette last July and released him on a promise to appear in court. The case has gone through several routine remands since Vermette was charged. “I also provided factual evidence to the Crown that the allegation against Mr. Vermette was not valid and he was not the perpetrator, if in fact something occurred in 1966,” said Weinstein.

Continued on page 2

RM of Stuartburn Demands Refund for Failed IT Contract Sam Slobodesky, from the Steinbach Lions Club, accepts a donation from the Whitemouth Lions Club during this year’s Journey for Sight.

Despite the cold weather and no snowmobile participation, the Steinbach Lions Club was still able to collect some funds during this year’s Journey for Sight. Sam Slobodesky, from the Steinbach Lions Club, said that due to cold weather there were no riders in this year’s run, which took place on January 18. “It was cancelled due to lack of participants although I went out by vehicle and collected the cheques at the stops and did the photos for the clubs,” stated Slobodesky. “The leg only brought in less than $3,000 but by doing the photo ops and driving the route I hope that is going to get things rolling better for next year!” The annual Journey for Sight Snowmobile Ride is the major

fund raising event for the Lions Eye Bank of Manitoba. The Lions Eye Bank of Manitoba and Northwest Ontario, Inc. is a non-profit charitable organization that provides funding assistance for the fight against corneal disease and injury, adaptive technology for the visually impaired, eye exams and eye wear for those in need of assistance, necessary equipment to health facilities as well as collecting used eyeglasses for developing countries. While on the trail, riders from northern, central and southern Manitoba make stops to accept donations. The Journey for Sight, which includes a snowmobile raffle, has raised over $1.7 million over the years.

The RM of Stuartburn is demanding reimbursement for money they spent on the creation of a municipal website after the Vita developer failed to deliver the goods. According to council, in November 2012 the municipality entered into an agreement with SoftByte Laboratory, Inc., which lists offices in both Vita, Manitoba and Florida, and Michael Purkhardt to establish a municipal website, domain and provide ongoing training and servicing. Subsequently the municipality experienced security issues and difficulties with the website and e-mail domain, which required the municipality to change domain hosts. In breach of the agreement SoftByte/Purkhardt failed to provide a website of the quality necessary for the Municipality’s requirements, stated council.

Continued on page 3


2

February 2014

Mayor Cleared continued... Continued from page 1

More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Ste. Genevieve Woman Sets Sights on Mars

Vermette was able to prove he never owned the kind of vehicle the complainant alleged was the scene of the assault, the lawyer said. The Crown met with the complainant and agreed to drop the case, he added. Vermette has always denied the allegation and he’s relieved at the outcome, Weinstein said. “He was extremely anxious when he was charged. He told police there was no way he would have done something like this,” he said. “I am innocent,” stated Vermette when the Dawson Trail Dispatch contacted him after the allegation surfaced. “I have nothing else to say.” Vermette was elected mayor of Ste. Anne in 2006. He previously sat as a councillor from 1974 to 1980. He’s known for his volunteer work in the community and a business he started in the 1970s continues operating to this day, the biography states. He is also a recipient of a Queen Elizabeth Jubilee medal. After news of his arrest broke Vermette was slandered by unknown people who defaced highway property and Vermette’s business signs with derogatory names, said Weinstein. The dated nature of the case was “unusual,” Weinstein admitted, adding he is grateful for the Crown’s swift action to dismiss the charges. The case was so old the charge Vermette faced doesn’t exist any longer after being replaced in 1983 by new categories of sexual offences. In 1966, the maximum punishment would have been five years in jail and a whipping. Ste. Genevieve resident Julie Perreault is the only Manitoban in the running to be a member of a group of volunteers willing to be pioneers on Mars.

By Marianne Curtis Thirty-one year old Julie Perrault from Ste. Genevieve is the only Manitoban currently in the running for a one way ticket to Mars as part of a project called Mars One. Mars One, a non-profit organization headed by Dutch entrepreneurs Bas Lansdorp and Arno Wielders, aims to have humans living on planet Mars by 2025. The space mission called out for volunteers in a search that began in April and ended in August 2013. More than 200,000 people from all over the world submitted video applications online. The founders carved down the list of aspiring astronauts to 1,058 and Perrault was one of 75 Canadians chosen. “This is an amazing moment in our history. I can watch or I can take part,” stated Perrault. “I’m someone with a sense of adventure and a love for learning and experiencing new things and I’m being given the

opportunity to be an explorer and an astronaut. The chance of a lifetime!” Those who make the cut will get extensive training to learn the skills needed to journey and live on Mars. “I am a lifelong sci-fi fan with a love of adventure and this would be the ultimate adventure,” Perrault added. “I like to challenge myself and not let fear stop me from doing what I want to do.” Perrault added that she might even have an advantage over other aspiring Mars occupants. “I might have an advantage over people who are used to a warmer climate, but I’ve also heard that it gets way colder on Mars,” Perrault said. Now that Perrault has been selected the reality of leaving her family and boyfriend has set in. “For the first 20 minutes I was pretty happy. I’m feeling good about myself. Then it hit me, kind of what that really meant,” Perrault, admitted. “My family doesn’t like the

possibility of never seeing me again, but I think they understand this is part of who I am. My boyfriend does not want me to go, but he’s not holding me back either.” The next phase for applicants is to acquire mental and physical clearances, followed by in-person interviews with the Mars One committee. Those who are selected from that process will take part in a simulated Mars environment, spending three months in an isolated habitat in the U.S. The space mission is estimated to cost around $6 billion. They will send four individuals on a one-way trip to the red planet in 10 years’ time. Then they will send four more people every two years to build the first permanent human colony on Mars. It is estimated that the cost for every manned mission following the first successful travel will cost $4 billion. Mars One will launch its first unmanned mission to Mars in 2018.

Shooting Forces Pointe Des Chênes Students Home Several Ste. Anne students had their humanitarian trip to the Dominican Republic cut short after they witnessed a shooting during a robbery on their first night. The École Pointe-des-Chênes students were in a group of 18 including students from École régionale SaintJean-Baptiste plus eight teachers and chaperones. The group arrived in Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic on Friday where they were supposed to work until February 6 on a project to help an orphanage and school for girls aged five to 17. Alain Laberge, Superintendent of the Division Scolaire Franco-Maintobaine, said the division cancelled the trip and flew the students’ home immediately after the incident. He said four or five students were in their room at night when the robbers burst in and demanded money and possessions. “The landlord heard noises and interrupted the thing,” said Laberge. “He got into a fight with them and they shot him.” Laberge said that most of the students did not witness the shooting but they all heard it. The division flew the group home immediately. The students and teachers arrived safely back in Winnipeg at 5 am on February 1 and are asking for privacy to be with their families. Psychologists will be on hand for the students, teachers and chaperones. “We think this is something really big. We don’t want to let students down,” he said. “They witnessed things no one wants to see.” Thugs forced their way into the compound at 1 am on Friday. Three or four shots were fired. It is not known if all of them struck the proprietor. He is in hospital in critical but stable condition. None of the 18 students, 8 teachers or adult chaperones was injured. The schools have been going to the same location the past four years, and their visits date back at least 10 years, Laberge said. The building was like a large home broken into suites with four or five students per suite, plus chaperones. There was security, but somehow the thieves got past it.


More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

February 2014

3

Lost Snowmobilers Survive Chilly Night By Marianne Curtis A Steinbach couple are grateful to be alive after becoming lost in the middle Lake of the Woods during a blinding snowstorm on January 26. Leandra Mardynalka and Danny McLachlan were ice fishing with friends near Birch Point on Lake of the Woods when they became lost on their snowmobile in a blizzard at the end of the day. Back on shore concerned friends contacted family members and reported the couple missing after they failed to return. Civilian Air Search and Rescue, RCMP Search and Rescue, the Fire Commissioner’s Search and Rescue Team, local RCMP from Sprague, members of the Steinbach Fire Department and many civilians, including friends and family, started a ground search. Meanwhile the couple was trying to find their way back after being disoriented by the blowing snow. “Our first mistake was leaving the ice shack,” recalled Mardynalka. “After two minutes of driving we could not see in front of us and we could not see our tracks behind us.” Disoriented by the blowing snow the couple found that they were lost in the middle of the lake. She admits they had a ‘breakdown’ moment when they realised they were lost.

“Knowing we were probably not going to hit the shore we came off of; it was so cold and you could not see your hand in front of your face,” Mardynalka continued. Eventually the couple got to the end of a swamp where their snowmobile broke down. After building a fire Mardynalka and her little Pomeranian hunkered down for the night and waited while McLachlan went for help. “He heard a noise and followed it. I was so cold already and my mind started doing crazy things. I had my moments and started to lose hope after half an hour,” Mardynalka admitted. “It was sheer joy when I finally heard a snowmobile coming.” While help was close by the rescue team failed to see her right away. “I saw someone doing circles. I came out and started yelling but he didn’t see me,” Mardynalka said. “I just dropped to my knees; it was so cold. The dog almost died, but he is doing better now.” The couple were taken to Roosevelt, Minnesota and later transported to a hospital in Roseau, Minnesota where McLachlan was treated for frostbite on his feet and emotional trauma. Civil Air Search and Rescue Association

(CASARA), the Office of the Fire Commissioner, Search and Rescue Manitoba (SARMAN), Manitoba Conservation, local volunteers, Sprague and Steinbach RCMP and RCMP Search and Rescue had commenced a search at daybreak. Police

were notified the same morning that the couple were found in Minnesota. “We are thankful and grateful that we have so many people in our lives and so grateful for everyone who organized this search and rescue,” Mardynalka concluded.

Leandra Mardynalka and Danny McLachlan, along with their little dog, are lucky to be alive after spending the night outdoors in a blizzard when they got lost on Lake of the Woods.

Southern Nursing Homes Mostly Protected By Marianne Curtis Concerns about sprinkler systems in personal care homes have been renewed after the devastating fire at a Quebec retirement home. The blaze ripped through the seniors residence in L’Isle-Verte, Quebec on January 23 killing at least 17 people and about 15 more are still missing. The 3-storey seniors’ home reportedly had a partial sprinkler system. However, a company that did work on the home has said sprinklers were installed in a new addition but not in the portion destroyed in the fire. There are 125 personal care homes across the province of Manitoba. Thirty-nine do not have sprinkler coverage; 35 of these are in rural communities. Despite the dismal provincial numbers, residents within Southern Health can rest assured that their loved ones are living in nursing homes with protection. There are 22 nursing homes within the boundaries of Southern Health. Seven are located within our region. In total, 10 are completely protected, six have partial protection and six have none. Nursing homes within our region that have full sprinkler systems include Bethesda Place, Steinbach; Heritage Life, Niverville; Le Repos Joly, St. Pierre-Jolys and Villa Youville, Ste. Anne. Partial systems are installed in Whispering Pines, Vita, Menno Home for the Aged, Grunthal and Rest Haven Nursing Home, Steinbach. Since 1998 Manitoba’s building code has required all newly built or extensively renovated personal care homes to have full sprinkler systems installed. However, the provincial government does not require older facilities to be retrofitted to meet the same standards, even though six other provinces do have such requirements.

Stuartburn Refund continued... Continued from page 1 Then in March 2013, the RM of Stuartburn and SoftByte/Purkhardt entered into an another agreement. SoftByte/Purkhardt agreed to create and provide a custom software program for the municipality’s financial and accounting requirements and to provide certain computer equipment. Council alleges the company was once again in breach of contract when they failed to provide the custom software and computer equipment as per the agreement. The RM of Stuartburn says they paid the company $3,500 under the website agreement and $16,500 for the software and equipment agreement. After several failed attempts to gain satisfaction, the municipality voted to terminate the contracts and seek financial reimbursement. In November 2013 council served SoftByte/ Purkhardt notices of termination of both agreements and a formal request for reimbursement of $16,500. Council informed the company that if they do not reimburse the municipality then the municipality would commence further legal action to enforce repayment of the bill.

February is ‘I Love to Read’ month at Bibliothèque Taché Library!

Do you like reading and prizes!? Here’s what you need to do: 1. Obtain your to reading log sheet by email or at the library. Email: btl@srsd.ca. Address: 1082 Dawson Rd, Lorette, MB 2. Read as many books as you can from February 1st-28th. 3. Return your reading log sheet to your library by February 28th. 4. Winners will be contacted by phone.


4

February 2014

Resilient Manitobans Every Manitoba winter presents its challenges and this winter has presented more than most. That was taken to a new extreme last month for many residents of the southeast when natural gas service was interrupted because of a rupture and explosion of a line near Otterburne. Many Manitobans rely on natural gas to provide heat and hot water. In the extreme cold that we have experienced this winter, the disruption of those services is more than an inconvenience. And yet, residents of the southeast showed what they always show when faced with adversity, we are a resilient bunch. Whether it is flood, fire, or in this case freezing weather residents of the southeast show not only an ability to help themselves but an unlimited willingness to help each other. Municipal officials in the impacted areas acted quickly to set up emergency resources, including warming centres where residents who were without heat could find shelter. The fact that these warming centres were so quickly established speaks well of the emergency response ability of municipal officials while the fact that they were sparsely used speaks to the individual resources and collective support available to those who stayed in their homes even without heat. One of the key things in any emergency is the ability to provide information to those impacted and to ensure there is communication between officials. In this case, TransCanada Pipelines and local officials provided information to the best of their ability in a timely fashion to try to ensure those impacted knew the extent of the situation they were facing. At the political level, I was also pleased to have been able to communicate quickly with local municipal officials, TransCanada Pipelines representatives, Manitoba Hydro representatives, Premier Greg Selinger and Official Opposition Leader Brian Pallister to ensure that the needed resources were available and that information was being provided. Despite the ability of residents and businesses to deal with the disruption of natural gas service, there were for many, financial costs associated with the outage. Whether that was in the purchase of equipment to deal with the cold or other financial losses, the outage affected many residents and businesses. TransCanada Pipelines has indicated there will be a program available to help compensate some of these costs and has opened offices in Niverville in the John Henry banquet room and at Providence College in the Reimer Student Life Centre building. Many worked through several nights to get service restored and Manitoba Hydro workers went door to door to ensure furnaces were working. All of those who helped to ensure impacted residents were safe and to ensure that natural gas service was restored as soon as possible deserve our thanks. I appreciate your comments and concerns. If you have any comments on these or other issues, you can contact me by writing, #3 – 227 Main Street, Steinbach, MB R5G 1Y7, by phone at 204-326-5763, by fax at 204-346-9913, by e-mail at kelvin.goertzen@leg.gov.mb.ca or by visiting my website at kelvingoertzen.com. I look forward to hearing from you.

Serving the communities along the historic Dawson Trail and beyond.

The Dawson Trail Dispatch is a monthly newspaper distributed free of charge to 50 Southeastern Manitoba communities. Published by: One One Consultants Inc. Box 308, Richer, MB R0E 1S0 Phone: (204) 422-8548 Fax: (204) 422-9768 Dan Guetre, Managing Editor One One Consultants Inc., Publisher News Writers: Marianne Curtis and Dan Guetre Columnists: Lee Guetre, Peter Friesen, Anni Markmann, Peter Martens, Raylene Snow, Dave Millar Production/Design: Dan Guetre, Myriam Dyck, Monica Guetre and Wilma Priebe Advertising: Karen Jorgenson and Dan Guetre

For Advertising Call: Phone: (204) 422-8548 Fax: (204) 422-9768 Email: sales@dawsontrail.ca Subscriptions: $29.95 annually plus GST for Canadian Subscriptions. $52.95 annually for International Subscriptions

Canada Post Agreement Number 42079020

More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Cheer Leaders are Terrible Diplomats The Prime Minister’s recent tour of the middle east left me, and undoubtedly many others, agog at his unabashed and slightly imbalanced praise of everything Israeli. Now I must admit that I have a bias towards Israel. Why? For the reason that it is a Democracy in a sea of volatile dictatorships, that the Holocaust left an indelible imprint on my soul and the re-creation of a state after WWII against very long odds has created a legion of people who put much stock in the combination hope and hard work. Yes this can be construed as cheerleading. But, I am conveying a personal feeling and I am not callously trolling for votes. Yet in spite of a personal bias, the end result in that region must include a Palestinian state. The longer the delay the more the difficulties will multiply. The population of Israelis and Arabs are both increasing but the latter faster than the former, which points to one potential stress in the future of one Democracy in one country, Israel, as opposed to two countries Israel and Palestine. Regardless, if Palestine becomes a democracy now or never, can Israel survive as an entity where the Jewish population is outnumbered in Israel? Democracy will not work with two sets of unequal citizens if you still want to be viewed as a country with democratic principles. At this point, Israel’s stock would start to disintegrate in the eyes of even the democratic world. That loss would be too great for the free world to bare. The settlements that Israel is continuing to build in Palestinian Territory are undermining a potential solution. Sooner than later the area left over for an independent Palestine will be compromised beyond anything acceptable as a Palestinian homeland. Prime Minister Harper’s effervescent, one-sided accolades did not help if we consider the hard work by American Secretary of State John Kerry who is trying to broker a solution between Israel and the Palestinian. Kerry could have used an unbiased assist instead this looked more like sabotage. In reality, it probably was a simple trolling for votes in a crass embarrassing cheerleading manner a la “Janet Jackson” mode. The difference is Janet Jackson’s exposure was less damaging than the Prime Minister’s middle east brain freeze. Let’s consider the potential positives in the world of geo-politics if the Palestinians had a state. The Arab world would not be able flog that same horse continuously at the expense of all the needs of their population and would have to stop blaming Israel and the west for their woes. It seems to me, put up or shut up would be an easier diplomatic starting place. Of course, this is pie in the sky, but I still have my collection of Leon Uris’ books, Exodus, Mila 18, The Hajd, QB Seven etc., etc. I am confident they will have a longer shelf life than future Jihads and survive the Prime Minister.

New Session of Parliament Begins On Monday, January 27, as the new session of Parliament began, I had the privilege of officially taking my seat in the House of Commons. It will certainly be a day that I will always remember. While in Ottawa, in addition to ensuring that my constituents in Provencher are well represented and their views and opinions are heard, I will also be serving on the Public Accounts and Canadian Heritage committees, which meet twice each week. The Public Accounts Committee reviews the federal government’s consolidated financial statements and attempts to identify financial shortcomings of the government in light of issues raised in the Auditor General’s report. The committee then makes recommendations to the government for improvements in spending practices. The second committee, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, has the power to review and report on the policies, programs and expenditure plans of the Department of Canadian Heritage and most of the agencies, tribunals and Crown corporations that fall under it. These include the CBC, CRTC, National Film Board and the Canadian Museum of Human Rights. This past week I was pleased to make a statement in the House of Commons officially recognizing the emergency crews that worked day and night to restore natural gas to many areas of Provencher after the gas line explosion near Otterburne. More than four thousand homes and businesses in several municipalities, including my own home, were affected. While many found a warm place to stay with friends, neighbours or extended family, others stayed put with warmth provided by space heaters and still others made use of the emergency warming shelters that were quickly opened. It was very encouraging to see how our communities and emergency crews in Provencher banded together to work through this crisis. Last week I also had the privilege to stand up in the House of Commons to speak on Prime Minister Harper’s recent trip to Israel. Mr. Harper made history by being the first Canadian Prime Minister to address the Knesset. His trip to Israel reinforces the close friendship between our countries and the partnership that exists on a range of global issues. Israel has no closer friend than Canada and our government is committed to advancing a principled foreign policy that is based on our common values of freedom, human rights, democracy and the rule of law. I also had the pleasure to stand with Ukrainian Canadians at a rally on Parliament Hill. I applaud our government’s decision to take targeted and meaningful action against Ukrainian officials responsible for the deplorable actions against Ukrainian civilians. Canada will not tolerate the destruction of democratic rights and freedoms in Ukraine. Given the violent repression of legitimate protest and the intimidation of opposition voices, we will immediately be restricting entry to Canada for key government figures. I know that Canada will continue to stand with the Ukrainian people, who courageously speak out in support of democracy. While my first week in Parliament was indeed a busy one, I look forward to an even more exciting few weeks ahead as our government prepares to table Budget 2014 on February 11. It is important that we continue to build on our successes and this budget will continue to focus on economic growth, job creation and returning to a balanced budget by 2015. I am always interested in hearing from you on important issues. You may contact my office toll free at 1-866333-1933 or at 204-326-9889. You may also write my office at 8-227 Main Street, Steinbach, MB R5G 1Y7, email me at ted.falk.c1@parl.gc.ca or visit my website at tedfalk.ca.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

Welcoming New MLAs I am proud to represent the Constituency of La Verendrye each and every day. I know our friends and neighbours represent the best Manitoba has to offer. In the event of a natural disaster, communities come together to make sure that everyone is taken care of. The natural gas explosion in Otterburne came at a time of extremely cold temperatures and inclement weather, but communities rallied together, opening warming stations and ensuring that everyone had a warm place to go. Few plan for an event of this magnitude, and it was truly great to see how the communities in the La Verendrye constituency and all the communities affected, worked together with Manitoba Hydro and TransCanada to ensure that natural gas service was restored as soon as possible. I was glad to see service restored in a timely manner, as the temperatures we have been experiencing this winter are dangerous to be in without heat of any kind. On another note, January 28 was Election Day in the constituencies of Arthur-Virden and Morris. The NDP took almost a year to call a by-election in Morris and sent voters to the polls when weather was at its worst. This by-election was their opportunity to sell their PST increase, and the voters of Arthur-Virden and Morris showed why the NDP is wrong for Manitoba. The NDP refused to call the referendum on their PST increase that was required by law, and they held off on these by-elections as long as they possibly could. I am proud to welcome Shannon Martin, the newly elected MLA for Morris, and Doyle Piwniuk, the newly elected MLA for Arthur-Virden, and I look forward to working with them in the Legislature. They will make excellent MLAs, and will help us continue to stand up for all Manitobans. The NDP knows now what the PC Party has known for some time, Manitobans are tired of the NDP’s failed leadership. It’s time for a change. I look forward to hearing from you with any questions or concerns you may have. I can be reached at my constituency office at 204-424-5406, my legislative office at 204-9454339, or at dennis.smook@leg.gov.mb.ca.

Provincial Money Grab from Manitoba Families Dear Editor: During October 2008, a new refundable provincial tax credit was announced for Manitobans who are the primary caregivers for family members or other loved ones. These caregivers were eligible for a $1,020 refundable tax credit, effective January 1, 2009. It has since been increased to $1,275 per year. Unfortunately, what you don’t know can hurt you! The Province of Manitoba only allows you to adjust your taxes for provincial credits up to three years back. In contrast, the Disability Tax Credit can be adjusted back up to ten years. I have met taxpayers in the past year that were not aware of this Provincial credit (you don’t know what you don’t know). These individuals have been caregivers for years, but were unaware they could claim this credit on their personal income taxes. When we request the adjustment to their taxes back to 2009, they are being denied the credit. In 2014, they will be denied 2009 and 2010. Time to change this policy. It is unfair to the caregivers who have been looking after their family members for years to be denied the financial assistance just because they were unaware of it. To the Premier, Minister of Finance, and all MLA’s, it’s time to give Manitobans the little bit of financial assistance that could help them care for those who are living in our communities. This request was sent to Hon. Greg Selinger, Premier, Hon. Jennifer Howard, Minister of Finance and Hon. Ron Lemieux, MLA Dawson Trail. Anni Markmann Ste. Anne, MB

Pride Before a Falk Dear Editor: In Ted Falk’s ‘On Parliament Hill’ column, January 23 in the Carillon, regarding how proud he was of PM Harper and his travelling party of 208 to Israel, many at taxpayer’s expense. Seems to suggest that Falk did not understand Harpers speech and/or as far as too many Conservative ministers do, happily smile and go along with whatever the Party tells them, rather than doing the job they were elected to do by representing the balanced and fairminded views of Canadian citizens. Part of the 208 individuals listed on the ‘stakeholders list’, the largest delegation ever, included a few Conservative ministers, a large number of Conservative party donors and oddly enough for a trade trip, Rabbis, Christians and Evangelical members. Representatives from the Jewish Defence League, an extremist group that is outlawed in USA and Israel, also made the list. Harper’s limited itinerary, much like Birthright Israel tours that offer free, all-expense paid trips for Jewish 18-26 year olds, only see what the Israeli government wants them to see and nothing else. This certainly was not a tour where one can come away with a better understanding of Israel’s realities or business dimensions and certainly not one of which to be proud. Harper’s trip did nothing of any good, for any people. He simply eroded Canada’s credibility as a peacekeeper and Falk’s role as the people’s representative. Mary Eggett Anola, MB

February 2014

5


6

February 2014

More Than Just News!

Gas Blast Rocks Otterburne

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Warm Hearts Heat Frigid Communities By Marianne Curtis

The heat went out in 10 different communities and over 4,000 customers were affected when a natural gas line exploded east of Otterburne. What started out as a minor inconvenience quickly escalated to a local emergency as the extent of the damage was revealed. As a precaution TransCanada Pipeline cut natural gas flow in three lines which ultimately turned off the heat in St. Malo, St. Pierre-Jolys, Grunthal and Dufrost, Ste. Agathe, Niverville, New Bothwell, Kleefeld, Otterburne and Marchand for almost four days. To complicate matters further, Manitoba Environment predicted that temperatures would plummet to -40 with the wind-chill, which forced local municipalities into action. The RM of Hanover declared a local state of emergency. Warming shelters were set up in Grunthal, St. Malo, Niverville, St. Pierre-Jolys and Kleefeld, but no one used them. Instead, neighbours went door to door to check on each other. Others took to social media and coordinated the disbursement of heaters, blankets or opened their doors for family and strangers alike. Jenn Friesen and her family in New Bothwell were one of many families affected by the outage. “To all those that reached out and offered warmth, heaters and blankets to those who needed it and opened your home so some could get warm, thank you. You are what being a community is all about,” praised Friesen. “To the trades and servicemen that went around the first few days hooking up heaters for people who needed heat, you rock. To your families, thank you for your patience and understanding of your spouses’, significant others and parents not being home!” Barry Piasta from Niverville said he is also grateful for the help he received from neighbours. “Thanks to neighbours, who all pulled together to check on each other, who offered their extra heaters,” added Piasta. “I sleep with a CPAP machine and the air was too cold. I was up all night. On Tuesday when the hydro guy came to the door . I said to him, be prepared to get a hug from this big guy.” Near the end of the weekend, what really amazed the communities was TransCanada Pipelines response to the emergency. TransCanada Pipeline (TCP) called in over 100 employees and contractors who Marc Labossiere’s Otterburne area home was aglow from the fire after a gas line exploded about 3 kilometres from his home. worked tirelessly on day and night shifts, in difficult weather conditions with high winds and temperatures lower than -40 C due to wind chill, to excavate the line, Labossiere said the flames reached investigating. By Marianne Curtis The cause of the fire has not been remove the impacted sections of pipe, make repairs and load and test the repaired 500 to 600 feet into the air. A natural gas pipeline exploded in “I heard the blast and felt the determined and officials say there is pipe to get the heat back on. southern Manitoba early in the shockwave,” Labossiere added. “It currently no cost estimate on the Mobile fuel trailers were brought to the communities of Niverville, St. PierreJolys and Grunthal to ensure that local health care facilities and nursing homes morning of January 25 sending was incredible to watch. A huge damage. remained in operation. massive flames into the air and thank you to Manitoba Hydro for Then TCP announced a compensation package that leading to the evacuation of five re-routing and restoring power by promises to cover all costs associated with the homes. 3:50 am!” incident. Those affected are encouraged to bring in TransCanada Pipeline said in a Soon after the explosion receipts for heaters, hotel costs and repairs bills from statement that a fire broke out Labossiere said police officials water line breaks. They are even compensating around 1:15 am on the Canadian came to his home and asked him to businesses that were forced to shut down due to the Mainline natural gas pipeline vacate the property. He loaded his explosion. system. Officials said they dogs into his car and waited on the New Bothwell Cheese has resumed production “Just went down to the TCP office and thanked evacuated five homes near the highway along with several other after the pipeline explosion near Otterburne left it them for their efforts in our community,” stated community as a precaution. Police cars. He was allowed to return to without power for two days. Adrian Bruce. “I asked about potential say there were no injuries or damage his residence a few hours later. Two full days of production were lost because of reimbursement for expenses I had for heating my to homes and property in the area. RCMP later determined the cause the gas pipeline explosion in Otterburne on the home. In less than 5 minutes, I had a cheque for the Marc Labossiere, who lives about of the explosion was not deliberate. weekend, said Ivan Balenovic, President and CEO full amount I paid for space heaters and electric three kilometres away from the site However, the Transportation of Bothwell Cheese. blankets. Exceptional service!” of the explosion, said he was sitting Safety Board of Canada and the “You don’t get those days back. Once the days A section of Highway 303 in the area of the pipeline in his house skyping with his National Energy Board are also are gone, they’re gone. And we produce about 17,000 incident remains closed. To make things easier for girlfriend when he heard a loud kilograms of cheese every day, so that’s a lot of people and local businesses, TransCanada Pipeline explosion. cheese that we’re not going to be able to produce has now opened a second Community Information “I looked in the kitchen and there now for the marketplace,” said Balenovic. Centre in the town of Otterburne at The Providence was a glow, so not knowing what Because demand is lower at the start of the year, University College. was happening I thought however, he said they can draw from existing TransCanada employees are on hand to answer something was on fire in the inventory, but their dairy suppliers will have to find questions and to help people process expense claims kitchen,” he said. “I jumped out of another spot to unload some milk. so they can recover money spent on direct costs due the chair. When I got to the back It’s not yet known exactly how much money was to the impact of being without natural gas. The sliding doors I actually felt the wave, lost because of the temporary shutdown. TransCanada Community Information Centre in or whatever, from this thing, and I A piece of pipe sticks out of the ground at TransCanada Pipeline has told the company it will Otterburne is located in the Reimer Student Life could see it raging in the the site where the natural gas line exploded compensate them for losses. Centre Building. near Otterburne. background.”

New Bothwell Cheese Back in Business


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

February 2014

7

considered significant, get the form and have your doctor complete. We can go back 10 years with this form with some significant tax savings if you normally have taxes payable. Even if you have no taxes payable, you can get $110 provincial credits. Volunteer Fire Fighters Amount: Be sure to get proof that you had 200 or more volunteer hours. Alternatively, your first $1,000 received is tax exempt. Public Transit Pass Amount: Not common in rural areas, but some students or people living in Winnipeg may be able to claim. Keep passes and receipts. The tax claim is good for monthly passes or tickets with at least four weeks in a row. First Time Home Buyer Amount: If you qualify, it can save up to $750 in taxes! Adoption Expenses: Rules can be complicated, but if you have or are in the process of adopting, just keep all your receipts and all documentation. Spousal Support Payments: If received, they are taxable income and you may need to pay taxes you didn’t expect to. If you are paying, they reduce your taxable income. Tradespersons’ Tools Expenses: get all your receipts together. It’s not that great a deal. You have to spend more than $1,117 up to $1,617 to get a measly $75 tax savings. Tips: Tips and gratuities received by an employee are taxable and should be reported. CRA completed a pilot Whether you do it yourself or use a tax professional like myself here’s a list of Tuition: Go on line to the university/college to get the project in one city in Ontario in 2010, investigating servers some items to gather for your 2013 taxes. Gather these items and put them in a official receipts for T2202. The number of months and audited those that did not claim reasonable tips. CRA reported is used to calculate education amounts and folder or envelope to make it easier for you and to pay the least taxes (legally) identified $1.7 million in unreported income and collected textbook amounts. Did you graduate in 2013 with a possible. many tax dollars! Be aware! Tax-Slips: are normally received by early March and some from investments Degree/Diploma/Certificate? You may qualify for the Investments sold: Capital gains or losses are normally Manitoba Tuition Fee Income Tax Rebate and you can or mutual funds can be issued end of March. Watch for the T4A from Co-ops not on a tax slip; you may find the information on a claim up to 10 percent each year to a maximum of 60 because you can claim the tax deducted and only report the dividends (income) trading summary with the end of year statement. Examples percent! Moreover, students can claim the interest on received if you use vehicle expenses as a tax deduction (authorized employee are property sold (other than principal residence) or given student loans and carry forward up to five years. expense, or self-employed). away to family (considered disposed), cottage, rental EI Benefits: Sometimes you get this information New for 2013: The T1135 property or vacant land. Make sure you know what you online since they don’t always mail them to you. If you Foreign Income Verification paid plus any capital improvements to calculate your had your tuition at a College paid for by EI, you may Statement must be reported if you ‘cost’ so you can determine your capital gain. have two EI tax slips. have foreign assets more than Home Buyer Plan (RRSP) repayments required: RRSP contributions: (March to December 2013 and $100,000 (Canadian equivalent). Check your 2012 Notice of Assessment. This includes property in the U.S. or January to March 3, 2014) Are via your employer group EI Repayment: If you received EI and your net income Shares or Mutual funds held outside RRSPs and your own contributions. You may need to will be more than $59,250, it may make sense to buy wait until mid March to make sure you get all the tax Canada. Make sure you report this RRSPs to bring income down and avoid EI Repayment. slips for January 1 to March 3, 2014 that you can and on your 2013 taxes. Figure this out before the March 3 deadline! should use on your 2013 taxes. Receiving Disability Income Non-Capital losses carry-over from previous years: Children’s Activities: Fitness credit and Arts credits. that’s taxable: Did you pay for Check your 2012 Notice of Assessment) and Net Capital Make sure you get the receipts for activities you paid part of the premiums? Find out from your pay stubs or your employer’s losses of other years. Find out how you can use these in payroll department how much you paid since you started paying into the plan. for the 2013 tax year (for children 16 and under) up to a the future. It’s deductible from the income you received. New this year is for you to report maximum of $500 you save up to $75. The Manitoba Political Donations: Make sure you get your official how much you paid into the employer disability plan via your payroll. Finally, credit is also for those aged 16 to 24 to claim on their receipt and claim it on your tax return; you can get back up a way to keep track of these premiums each year and it likely won’t be on your own taxes. to 75 percent! Donations: make sure you get all the donation T4. So keep your year-end pay stub that shows the amount. Tax Instalments: Did you have to make quarterly Moving expenses: Did you move at least 40 km in order to earn employment receipts for contributions you made during 2013. instalment payments? Be sure to include this info for your income or attend school? You can claim the moving costs, so keep your receipts Remember spouses can claim the total on one tax return taxes. CRA normally sends out a yearly statement in for better tax savings. If your total is less than $200, you for rental moving trucks and accommodations on route. The simplified method February to confirm what your payments were. may want to carry them forward (up to five years) to only needs the number of km to claim the rest of the travel expenses. Renting: Gather all your receipts so you can claim the get better tax credits. Extra credits 2013 to 2017 for the Medical: premiums paid via payroll or privately, travel (more than 40 km Provincial Manitoba Education Tax Credit. Remember one-way), out of pocket not covered by the plan; laser eye surgery; travel health new First Time Donor’s Super Credit there is an extra 25 only one tenant can claim. insurance and more. Remember you can go back 10 years (with receipts) if you percent credit on the first $1,000. Property Taxes: Check to see if you did not receive the Carrying charges: Fees paid to brokers for didn’t claim it in the past. $700 credit on your bill. Did you purchase a home in investment counselling and interest on investment loans. 2013? You may not have received the credit on your Make sure you get these documents or receipts. The property taxes. Also check to see if your property is Safe Deposit Box can be claimed on the 2013 taxes. It’s considered ‘farm property’, you may qualify for the the final year you can. Farmland School Tax Rebate (has nothing to do with you Child Care Expenses: Make sure you have all the farming or not!). receipts for the expenses you paid in 2013. Manitoba Primary Caregiver Tax Credit: The tax Union Dues: Often this is on your T4, but sometimes credit is up to $1,275. Do you care for someone (spouse, you need to get a receipt direct from your union. parent, sibling, neighbour, and friend)? You may qualify. Disability Tax Credit: If you’ve already been Find out. approved from CRA, you will continue to get this Turning 19: File a tax return for GST Credit even if you credit. If you think you may qualify (walk slower than have nothing else to report (no employment income or most, hearing, mental functions, diabetes (testing and tuition). adjusting insulin daily), or more than one may be Anni Markmann is a Tax Professional, a Certified Financial Planner, and a Certified Professional Consultant on Aging living, working, and volunteering in our community. Contact her at 204.422.6631, anni@SteAnneTaxService.ca or 36 Dawson Road in Ste. Anne.

Gather your Papers and Get Set for Taxes


8

February 2014

More Than Just News!

Local Talk Show Launches in Blumenort

Marc and Mandy Show co-hosts Marc Atiyolil and Amanda MacLaren are looking for viewer participation when they launch their new talk show on ShawTV from a studio in Blumenort.

“Viewers will tour spectacular homes across the country, fashion lovers will get a peek at what’s hot in the world of fashion and see drastic transformations as our fashion experts turn lucky viewers’ wardrobes from drab to fab,” explained MacLaren. “Chefs will wow viewers with easy to make, budget friendly recipes, and relationship experts will explore the inner workings of family life in today’s fast paced world.” If you have a unique life story to tell that would help better other people’s lives, the Marc and Mandy Show wants to hear from you. Members of the community also invited to register online to be part of the audience. Audience members will be privy to special giveaways and space is limited. Log on to MarcandMandy.com for more details.

By Marianne Curtis Do you have a beautiful home, want to makeover a room or experience a fashion makeover, reach a fitness goal or want to fix a broken relationship? The Canadian Home Trends Magazine is looking for your story! In April, Canadian Home Trends Magazine is launching the Marc and Mandy Show. Marc Atiyolil and Amanda MacLaren will co-host the 30 minute talk show from a permanent studio located in Blumenort. The Marc and Mandy Show is about real people and everyone has the opportunity to come on the show.

“The idea for the show has been years in the making. It started with the idea of having a television show with a live audience.” Marc Atiyolil is the editor-in-chief of the national home décor publication, Canadian Home Trends Magazine. He writes a syndicated newspaper column “From Drab to Fab”, which explores how easy it is for homeowners to create designer accessories using things from around their homes. “The idea for the show has been years in the making. It started with the idea of having a television show with a live audience,” says Atiyolil. “We wanted the Marc and Mandy Show to talk about real people and real issues.” Co-host Mandy MacLaren is the Lifestyle Editor of Canadian Home Trends Magazine. She is also the founder of the product line “The Healing Touch of Aromatherapy” that offers women 100% natural bath and body products. Her passion for fashion, health and wellness can be seen first-hand on the Marc and Mandy Show. “For instance, instead of getting models to come and showcase the latest fashion trends and give women a non-realistic impression of what real women look like, we’re inviting women in the community to come and get free makeovers and showcase them on the show,” added MacLaren. The half hour talk show will be filmed locally in Blumenort and distributed nationally on SHAWTV and MarcandMandy.com. Viewers will be surprised with special appearances from celebrity designers, beloved chefs, and music superstars.

Dawson Trail Dispatch

LOL Life is full of moments. My last article talked about being mindful, but there is another secret to happiness and good health to add on life’s journey. There is a way to face life during the great times and during the disastrous moments. Life will always have its moments. As Murphy’s Law states, ‘if it can go wrong... it will.’ Yup, life can be a real challenge at times. We have a choice to make when life keeps hitting us with curve balls. We can decide to let bitterness reside and take our spirit, or we can choose to develop a lighter way of coping. This lighter approach is developed by growing a terrific sense of humour. Start greeting these sour moments with a little smirk and before long, you grow to laugh about the disaster. It doesn’t happen overnight. You must work to change your attitude, but it is possible to laugh in the face of distress. It is a great stress relief. Try to hang out with anyone who knows how to laugh, and learn. Believe it or not, there are different categories of laughter: - There is the little chuckle when you see something cute, like a Mom trying to get the whole hockey team’s bags into her VW. - There’s the ‘tee-hee-hee’ that comes when you tease someone and jest about their flaws. - There is the deep laugh that comes from hearing a good joke or watching great comedy. - There’s that ‘wheezing and silent’ laugh. The ‘I can’t breath’ laugh when the funny bone just won’t let up and you just can’t stop. - And then there is the best laugh of all, ‘The Gut Laugh’! It is the deepest, most therapeutic laugh. Babies instinctively gut laugh. When I am with my daughter, we have been known to lose it and gut laugh until we cry. It is rare when we really let it all out and laugh until we drop. As kids, we did it all the time. Did you know that there are Laugh Therapy classes? (Now I think this is funny and I get a chuckle out of it.) This class gives you practice in letting your laugh out. It has been proven that the brain cannot decipher whether a laugh is real or fake. It will send the ‘happy hormones’

regardless. So it is said that when you are grumpy or upset, pretend to laugh. Laugh out loud. Pick a chuckle, a tee-hee-hee, or a downright crazy, gut laugh. Practice in the shower or in the car (I do not recommend you do this during a church sermon, a wedding ceremony or your child’s first confession of poor decisions). Whenever you laugh, the brain assumes you’re happy, and sends the messages that you feel good. So I suggest you find as many reasons to laugh as possible. If you think to, you really can find something funny about any situation. This is how comedians create their shtick. They take human flaws, failures, disasters, problems, and our own vulnerability turning them into jokes. It does take some effort, but you too can be the comedian for your own life. Professional clowns spend time watching people and then copying silly behaviour. We like to laugh at ourselves best. Try to watch comedy TV or pick comedy movies. These really make you feel good. Read books that are full of humour. Estelle Bouchard-Haines, a Ste. Anne physiotherapist, is launching her first book ‘It’s madness, it’s messy, it’s motherhood.’ It is a funny, light, humorous book defusing the stress of having a family. Laughing at life! Spend time with your friends that like to laugh... you know who they are. There are those that just bring out our sense of humour. Laughing helps digest food, will de-stress your soul, and is a better way to prevent depression. If you look at elderly people, very few laugh. Some are even bitter. Please don’t lose your happy outlook and your sense of humour. Laugh often and LAUGH OUT LOUD! It is so good for your mind, body and soul. Raylene Snow is a health advocate, retired teacher and owner/operator of Raylene’s Wellness Spa located south of Ste. Anne on Hwy. 210 S. You can reach her at 204- 422-6234.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

February 2014

9


10

More Than Just News!

February 2014

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Actif Epica Communities Ready to Host Tough Athletes By Marianne Curtis

Concert With A Cause Help us bring ‘The Recycled Orchestra’ from a slum in Paraguay to perform in Steinbach. This full-fledged youth orchestra plays instruments made from the trash from the landfill on which they live. Bringing ‘The Recycled Orchestra’ to Steinbach as part of a Canadian tour was a dream of the late Garry Dueck, owner of G & E Homes. In tribute to Garry, Sweet Water Creek will be performing at our Concert With A Cause fundraising event to help raise funds for ‘The Recycled Orchestra.’ You will also enjoy blues music by John Lepp and storytelling by Clint Toews with a special performance by magician Chris Loewen. Join us at Steinbach Mennonite Church on Thursday, February 13, 7:30 pm. Tickets available at the SAC Office.

CASH PRIZES! Steinbach’s Got Talent A fun talent search open to all amateur acts of all ages from the Southeast. Applications online now or stop by the SAC Office. Live auditions on Monday, March 3 and Wednesday, March 5. Fifteen finalists will go on to perform at the final show. Application deadline is Thursday, February 20.

Blizzard Blitz Special Try NEW Noon Zumba with Tammy Schroeder, designed to get you back to work on time! Forget the workout, just lose yourself in the music and find yourself in shape. 12 weeks for only $69, starting February 3 (Mondays). Or try After Five Zumba, 12 weeks for $99, starting February 5 (Wednesdays). Call to register.

Don’t Miss New Saturday Workshops Silk Painting on February 8, 9 am - 1 pm and Glass Fusing on February 22, 9 am - 4 pm.

Spring Break Out! Fun and creative camps running Tuesday-Thursday, April 1 - 3 at the Steinbach Arts Centre. Ages 5 - 12, don’t miss the adrenaline rush! Enjoy three energy-packed days of Music, Drama, Dance, Art and Sports.

Enter Your Art

Artists of all ages from the Southeast, enter your artwork in the 16th annual Southeast Open Art Exhibit. Find applications online or stop by the SAC Office. After hours drop box by the front door or fax to 204-346-9777 by Monday, March 3.

Summer in the City Applications online now – looking for musicians, bands, kid’s entertainers, painters, potters, cartoonists, stained glass and other artisans. Be a part of Steinbach’s summer festival this June – Main Stage, Cultural stage or the Artists in the City tent.

Performers Wanted Be a part of our KR Barkman Concerts in the Park series. These free outdoor concerts run in June and July. It’s a unique opportunity to connect with a new audience! Application deadline is Friday, March 28.

Coming up in the Hall Gallery Join us at the Cultural Arts Centre on Wednesday, February 19 to celebrate the opening of the Southeast Artists Group exhibit. This group of artists meets every Tuesday morning to paint and create together. The exhibit runs February 19 - March 20.

Calling all artists Apply to hold a monthly exhibit in our Hall Gallery. Applications for the 2014-2015 season are online now. Apply for a full exhibit (30 pieces) or a half exhibit (15 pieces) by Saturday, March 1.

Celebrate the Arts… 35 Years of Memories. The Steinbach Arts Council fundraising gala is coming up on Friday, May 2 at Friedensfeld Community Centre. Enjoy an exquisite evening of delicious food, sparkling jewels from our jewelry tombola and dancing. Cast your bid for original artwork in our Fine Art Auction. Save the date!

Treble Teens Alumni Seeking Alumni for the Treble Teens to perform at our 35th anniversary concert on Friday, May 23. Save the date! Proposed rehearsal dates are May 15 and 22 and one rehearsal the day of the concert, on May 23. Music selections will be emailed in advance. Please contact Liz at events@steinbachartscouncil.ca or call the SAC Office. We’re inviting all Treble Teens singers, crew, staff and volunteers from 1962-1989 to RSVP for an Alumni Brunch on Saturday, May 24. Fun and informal, the brunch starts at 11 a.m. at the Steinbach Arts Centre. Also, can you help? We are searching for costumes, photos, video clips and memorabilia.

One-of-a-Kind Art Up to 80 percent off one-of-a-kind art: Check out artworks by local artists Helen Banman, Daylon Brown, Arlene Enns and Wendy Winther. Stop by the Steinbach Arts Centre or view artworks on the SAC website.

On February 15, for the third year in a row, racers from around the world will gather in the frozen winter landscape. Whether they are biking or running 130 km of unforgiving temperatures, brutal winds and bare landscapes, they will be treated to a full-on celebration of human resilience, community spirit and fun. Actif Epica is a non-profit and a self-organizing community festival centred along the checkpoints of a corresponding 130 km bike challenge that spans from St. Malo to St. Boniface. Despite the frigid temperatures this winter, a record number of participants have signed up for the event. According to Ian Hall, one of the organizers of the event, “Sixty-eight bike enthusiasts have already expressed interest in channelling their inner voyageur and tackling the 130 km bike route, with finish times anticipated at 10 to 20 hours,” stated Hall. “Some are seasoned racers pitting their skills against the winter and some are winter bike commuters planning to ride more casually in small groups.” Actif Epica expects to bring together Manitobans of all backgrounds, ages and activity levels to gather, participate and enjoy the outdoors in the winter. An early roster shows riders coming from various This year’s Actif Epica trail kicks off in St. Malo at 8 am on communities throughout February 15 and follows the Crow Wing Trail through several Manitoba plus participants communities with the final stop being the Forks in Winnipeg. from Minnesota, Delaware, Colorado, Alberta and Saskatchewan. While on the trail, participants will have several opportunities to take a break and participate in community activities. Festival sites in St. Pierre-Jolys, Crystal Springs, Niverville and St. Adolphe will provide warm checkpoints for the bike riders and form hubs for Co-Actif events. These planned community events include hockey tournaments or birding walks to casual games of pick-up shinny and family winter picnics. The inaugural edition in 2012 attracted 32 racers and over 1,000 co-event participants. Registration is open until Friday, February 7 and for more information contact Hall and David Pensato at 204-960-6743.

St. Adolphe Dike Expansion Scrapped by Ritchot By Marianne Curtis After years of planning and spending thousands of dollars on studies, the RM of Ritchot has decided to not proceed with a planned expansion of the St. Adolphe dyke. The decision was made after council and local homeowners failed to agree on a fair market purchase price on land the municipality needed to purchase for the project. RM of Ritchot Mayor Bob Stefaniuk confirmed that his council voted against proceeding with the project despite years of lobbying and planning. “The St. Adolphe Dike Expansion Project is not proceeding. St. Adolphe will remain at the same size it is now for the foreseeable future,” stated Stefaniuk. “The expanded dike would have provided 250 acres of flood protected land to the village. This would have allowed about 400 new homes to be built.” Without the expansion St. Adolphe will stay at its current size with very few building lots still available, added the Mayor. “It is unfortunate that the diking project did not proceed. Hopefully other opportunities will become available in the near future to flood-proof and develop this beautiful piece of land,” Stefaniuk said. The project may be dead but the RM of Ritchot is left holding the bag for engineering costs. With the decision to cancel the project the municipality will lose $2.31 million in Building Canada Fund, Communities Component program funding already approved by the province. “Funding from the federal and provincial governments for this project under this Infrastructure Program is now lost,” Stefaniuk noted. “Under this Infrastructure program the municipality is financially responsible for the engineering and soil testing costs. This was contracted out to a consulting engineering firm and the cost was approximately $250,000.” The $6.9 million St. Adolphe Dike expansion project included hydraulic studies, obtaining environmental approvals, preparing concept plans and detailed drawings, purchasing property, tendering that work required, and inspecting the work done. Historically, once a municipality loses approved government funding for a project it is harder for them to obtain funding for similar projects in the future.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

February 2014

11

Ste. Anne Curling Club Struggles to Keep Open Freezing Heroes

By Marianne Curtis

The Ste. Anne Curling Club is hoping the Town of Ste. Anne will give them another year to increase membership instead of forcing them to shut their doors. At a recent Town of Ste. Anne meeting Club President Linda Buss and Anni Markmann made a brief presentation on the financial status of the Ste. Anne Curling Club. They told the council that because of the diminishing number of curlers over the past two years the Curling Club Well, another month has begun might see a deficit for this season. and yes, it is still winter. I know it’s “We told them that the curling club has a financial problem and to give not realistic to believe that one them the heads up that paying our rent the next few months was going to morning I’m going to wake up and be an issue,” explained Buss. “We want another season to bring up our find that spring is here and the membership. It’s almost the end of this season so we can’t do anything snow is a distant memory. It may until next year.” not be realistic but I can keep The Ste. Anne Curling Club rents the facility and four sheets of ice, from hoping, I will keep hoping. the Town of Ste. Anne for $6,000 a month for a total of $36,000 a year (for I’m sure that most everyone six months use). “We have expenses, plus we pay an ice-maker on top of reading this month’s column will that,” Buss added. have heard about the natural gas This year the group attracted 142 members, which brought in $24,000 in pipeline explosion near Otterburne. memberships. A few years ago membership ranged between 200-250 adults. I’m also sure that most of you, “We’ve seen a decrease in membership partially because of the weather. especially if it affected you or your Many of our curlers don’t want to drive,” Buss explained. “It is also a loved ones, are quite a bit more social sport and with things like social media people don’t feel the need to informed than I am. Sometimes it get out and be as social as they used to be.” seems as though I live within my own little world... Thankfully, it did not disrupt the heating of our home but some of our relatives were affected by the loss and I can imagine some of the frustration and activities that must have gone on to keep the homes somewhat heated. That brings me to the topic of this month’s ‘My Spinning World’. I’d like to dedicate the column to all the workers out there who worked all the long hours and the late nights to fix the break and to get the natural gas flowing once again. With some cold days and even more ferociously cold nights, these men and women continued on, pressed on, to get the job done to provide warmth to homes, schools and businesses around our province. I know that some days I have to go out and snow blow my driveway and while it doesn’t really take too long to do it, when it is bitterly cold outside it sure can seem like a very long time. With frost on my eyelashes and ice in my moustache and beard, it can seem like quite the ordeal. For me it always feels good when I come inside from such an epic journey and have my family show their appreciation for the battle, which I just waged; man and snow blower versus driveway and snowdrifts. More often than not, my family doesn’t seem to see my return from this battle as anything other than me just doing what needed to be done. That’s alright, though for when I drive down my nicely cleared driveway and see the nice sharp edges along the sides, I know that I did good. My wish and prayer is that the men and women who worked through the bitterly cold days and nights, the ones that froze the fingers, toes and noses to get the gas flowing safely once again, know that we all appreciate and are very thankful for all that they’ve done. So, from the bottom of my heart, may I take this opportunity to say what everyone should be saying to them: THANK YOU! Until next time, take care and keep your world spinning.

Ste. Anne Curling Club President Linda Buss (right) is confident that membership growth will be the key to the survival of the local curling club.

Buss is confident that more community involvement could see the club thrive and even grow. One of the things she would like to see is the local schools using the facility. “We need our municipal representatives and schools involved,” Buss suggested. “Establishing subsidized programs could encourage the schools to bring students over to curl during gym class or grow our juniors program.” Until the Town of Ste. Anne makes a decision on the club’s future the Ste. Anne Curling Club is continuing with fundraising. A Bud Spud and Steak night is planned for April to help the Ste. Anne Curling Club cover this year’s expenses. The Ste. Anne Curling Club has operated in the town’s curling facility since before 1963.


12

February 2014

More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Pat Porter Active Living Centre offers programs, activities, services and volunteer opportunities, striving to promote healthy and active living for older adults of the southeast region. We invite you to come and pay us a visit and consider participating in some of our programs. For more information drop by the Centre, Monday to Friday 9 am - 4 pm, call 204-320-4600 or online patporteralc.com. Membership is only $25 per year due by January 15 of each year for those 55 years of age and older. The fee after January 15 is $30. Join early and avoid the $5 late fee! Benefits include reduced program rates, a voice in business meetings, voting rights, and eligibility to serve on the board or committees.

Up and Coming Events and Monthly Programs: Bingo: We will are hosting BINGO nights on Tuesdays, February 4 and 18. Doors open at 6:30 pm and the games start at 7 pm. Please feel free to call the centre at (204) 320-4600 for more information. Afternoon Country Jam: Thursday, February 20 from 1:30 - 4 pm. Come out and listen to some good old time country music. The cost is $2 in advance for members, $3 in advance for non-members and $4 at the door. February Potluck is on Thursday, February 20. If you know that you would like to attend please call ahead and let us know what you would like to bring. Call 204-320-4600. As always needed are salads, casseroles, desserts and buns. Cost is $5. We will be ordering from Chicken Chef for our Potluck. Fitness Classes: Low impact aerobics and strengthening fitness classes with instructor Shanley on Monday’s and Friday’s from 9:30 -10:30 am. Drop in fee of $4. P.A.C.E. PROGRAM: We are happy to announce that we will be offering the P.A.C.E. fitness program with our Urban Poling class on Thursday mornings. We will be doing a half hour of P.A.C.E. and a half hour of poling. Classes start at 9:30 am. Call 204-320-4600. Old Time Country Dance: With live Band – Frazer River Boys on Friday, February 28 at 8 pm. Tickets available at the centre. Advanced tickets $10 for members, $12 for non-members and $14 at the door. Lunch at 10 pm. Computer Classes: Every Wednesday for 1 hour at 9, 10 and 11 am. Contact 204-320-4600 to make an appointment. February Birthday Celebrations: Wednesday, February 5 at 2 pm. Celebrate with us! Bring your friends! Guests pay $2 for coffee and cake. Brain Injury Support Group Meeting: On Monday, February 24 at 7 pm. Computer Lab: Need help with your computer skills? Labs are 1 hour long and available every Wednesday morning from 9 am - noon. Contact 204-320-4600. Foot Care: On the first Tuesday and Wednesday and third Tuesday of the month from 9 am - 2 pm. Run by a professional foot care nurse. Cost $30. Bring your own towel. Contact the centre to book an appointment. Beltone Hearing: On the third Friday of each month. Contact 1-800-661-2653 for appointment. The Town of Niverville Council is Wood Carving: Try your hand at our wood carving. The group meets every appealing to the province to Monday evening at 6 pm (excluding the summer months). The cost is $ 1 for the address safety concerns at the evening. Please bring your own supplies. intersection of Highway 311 and Highway 59. According to council, there is Weekly Programs: growing concern with the growth in 9:30 - 10:30 am Low impact fitness class with instructor Niverville. Increased traffic at the Monday 12 - 4:30 pm Drop-in Pool intersection of Highway 311 and 1 - 4:30 pm Model Trains Highway 59 is placing severe 1 pm Canasta pressure on traffic especially during 7 pm Tai Chi certain times of the day. Tuesday 9:30 am 3 pm Circle of Friends “Near accidents and drivers are 12 - 4:30 pm Drop in Pool taking inappropriate actions to Urban Poling at Clearspring Centre avoid traffic delays, calling in the Wednesday 8:30 - 9:30 am 12 - 4:30 pm Drop in Pool question of vehicle safety,” stated 1 - 4 pm Cribbage council. “The Province is aware of 1:30 pm Floor curling the situation and has to date not 7 pm Old Time Country Band Practice taken corrective remedial action.” 9:30 - 10:30 am P.A.C.E. Program and Urban Poling The Town of Niverville council has Thursday 12 - 4:30 pm Drop in Pool forwarded their concerns and 1 - 4 pm Whist requested that Manitoba 9:30 - 10:30 am Low impact fitness class with instructor Infrastructure and Transportation Friday 9:30 am - 3 pm Circle of Friends immediately undertake the 12 - 4:30 pm Drop in Pool necessary studies and steps needed to improve safety measures. This Noon meals are available Monday through Friday. Cost $5.50. Contact 204includes suggestions of enhanced 320-4605 by 9 am to reserve your meal for that day. Purchase your meal ticket at lighting, speed reduction, merge the receptionist desk before noon. Monthly menus available at the office or in the and exit lanes or whatever means newsletter. Bring a friend. necessary to improve the safety of Volunteer Opportunities include perogy making, decorating and setting tables, motorists travelling through the birthday party hosts, food preparation and serving, clean up, greeters, receptionists. area.

Niverville Intersection Accident Waiting to Happen


More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Martin Takes Morris in By-election By Marianne Curtis Voters in the constituency of Morris remained “true blue” by electing Shannon Martin as their provincial representative during the recent January 28 by-election. A week later, the newly elected MLA was named to opposition leader Brian Pallister’s shadow cabinet as Conservation and Water Stewardship critic. Shannon Martin, who is considered a rising star in party circles, took the riding by a landslide despite only a 27.5 percent voter

Fundraiser Planned for Agape House By Marianne Curtis A dessert fundraiser is being planned for Agape House’s capital campaign, ‘A Safe Place to Grow’. The event is taking place on February 8 at 7 pm at the Pat Porter Active Living Centre. It will feature delectable desserts, artistic and musical entertainment and a unique opportunity for attendees to be a part of this worthwhile campaign. Agape House’s Executive Director, Tracie Rigby, said all proceeds from the event would go towards building a new facility to meet the current and future needs of the growing southeast region. “Agape House has been meeting community needs for the past 28 years in the Eastman Catchment area,” said Rigby. “Since 2007 the centre has seen a huge increase in the amount of women and their children accessing shelter services. It has become a struggle to meet the growing needs of our catchment area.” According to Red River Community College (RRCC) student Alicia Loewen, the event is being planned by the RRCC Steinbach Event Planning class and who are attending the administrative assistant program at RRCC Steinbach. “We were very excited to hear that we were going to be planning a fundraising event for Agape House,” stated Loewen. Table sponsorships (eight seats) are available for $175, or individual seats may be purchased for $25 each. Please contact Red River Community College, Steinbach campus at steinbach@rrc.ca or call 204-320-2500 to reserve seats. Agape House is a charitable, nonprofit organization that is funded through a grant from the Provincial Government Department of Family Services, as well as through community donations. As one of ten women’s shelters in Manitoba, Agape House serves an area that extends north to Pine Falls/Manigotogan, south to the U.S. Border, and west to Winnipeg and east to the Ontario border. It began operating in December 1985 out of a 3-bedroom bungalow after concerned citizens recognized the need to help families in the Eastman region. The women’s shelter moved to a 5bedroom house in Steinbach to facilitate the growing need for services. Today the shelter has 16 beds, in an average year sees over 200 clients, and responds to 1,500 crisis calls.

turnout. The premier called the long awaited by-election after the seat remained vacant for a record 350 days. Cold temperatures and a major gas outage may have kept many voters away but at the end of the day, Martin received 2,642 votes, well ahead of NDP candidate Dean Harder, who claimed 488 of the votes. The 43-year-old former Provincial Director of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business is eager to get down to business. “My very first order of business is giving a voice to the people of Morris,” Martin said. “They haven’t had any kind of elected voice for 12 months now.” Progressive Conservative Leader Brian Pallister was pleased with the night’s results, which saw Tory candidate Doyle Piwniuk take the seat in the Arthur-Virden

constituency. “The local people braved the weather in January to send a message to the provincial government that they are not doing a very good job,” said Pallister. “The people are no longer impressed with our high tax and high spending government.” Liberal Party candidate Jeremy Barber was not far behind with 422 votes, while Independent Ray Shaw claimed 138 votes and Green Party of Manitoba Alain Landry got 85. The Morris riding stretches from the town of Morris to Headingly and includes two towns hit by the natural gas pipeline blast near Otterburne. Elections Manitoba reported voter turnout on Tuesday (excluding advance polls) came in at less than 30 percent. In the 2011 general election voter turnout at 51 percent. Conservatives have held Morris since the mid1950s and won the 2011 general election with 74 percent of the vote. Newly elected Morris MLA Shannon Martin on the steps of the Manitoba Legislature with opposition Leader Brian Pallister.

February 2014

13


14

February 2014

COMMUNITY EVENTS

More Than Just News!

Wednesdays from 1 - 3 pm. Refreshments provided. We ask for prize for first place and consolation. Contact Bob Tufford, 204a donation of a Loonie each event. Beginners welcome. Contact 346-0085 or tufford@mymts.net. Juliette 204-424-5285 or Denise 204-883-2880. MHV 50th Anniversary Lecture Evening - On Friday, February Open Bonspiel - At the Curling Club from Wednesday, February 21 at 7 pm at the Mennonite Heritage Village 231 PTH 12 N. EMAIL YOUR COMMUNITY EVENT TO EDITOR@DAWSONTRAIL.CA OR FAX 204-422-8548 5 - 9. Open to any combination of curlers (all women, all men, With Dr. Roland Sawatzky. Exhibit Grand Opening and Tours Blumenort 8 at the park. Crib tournament as well as youth night. The 3 & 1, 2 & 2). Contact to register curlstadolphe@gmail.com. available. Donations accepted. Family Day - On Monday, February 17, at the park. There will annual sponge hockey tournament is on Saturday, along with be kids colouring, ice bubbles and Olympic themed games for all sorts of contests and bingo. Evening events include the St. Malo Employment Fair – On Tuesday, February 25 from 5 – 8 pm all ages. The canteen will also be open. candy, money, and grocery scrambles. There are door prizes Winter Festival of Friends/Festival des Amis - Begins Friday, at 10 Chrysler Gate, Steinbach (Pat Porter Centre). Having A schedule of events TBA. and an auction. See newbothwell.com. February 14 at 6 pm - Monday, February 17 at 9 at St. Malo trouble finding a job? Join us at the Eastman Employment Fair Provincial Park. A spectacular celebration of culture, cuisine and take the opportunity to meet over 25 employers from the Falcon Lake Niverville and tradition, fantastic regional cultural entertainment and area. Contact Marina Klassen 204-346-6609 or Beaver Days Winter Festival will be held Feb. 7-9. Come out GriefShare - If you or someone you know has experienced the wonderful winter family activities. Beat the cold and make the marina@eastmanimmigrantservices.com. to the Whiteshell Community Centre and discover all the great loss of a loved one we wish to help, you get support and learn St-Malo Festival of Friends a family tradition. See indoor and outdoor activities! about the grieving process. Contact 204-381-1155 to register friendsofstmalopark.com. Southeastern Manitoba Festival – Month long festival starts or go to Nivervillegriefshare.com. on Friday, March 7 with string instrumental, Senior piano on Friedensfeld Monday, March 10 – Thursday March 13, Dance on Saturday, St. Pierre-Jolys Valentines Dance – On Friday, February 14 from 8 pm - 1am Moms N’ Tots Playgroup - Moms with children up to age six. Mood Disorders Association of Manitoba – Depression support March 15 -16 and March 22 – 23, Vocal Monday, March 3 at the Community Centre. Lunch served, Live Band ‘Small Town Wednesday mornings from 9:30 - 11:30 am located in the group meetings held on the 4th Tuesday of every month at 7 6, Musical Theatre Saturday, March 8 – 9, Junior Piano Limits’. Advance tickets only $15.00/person. Contact Irene 204- lower level of Fourth Avenue Bible Church (62 4th Avenue S.). pm. Located at the Health Corner DeSalaberry Hospital. Contact Monday, March 17 – 20, Speech/Theatre Arts Friday, March 326-1624. Free drop-in program with coffee and snacks provided, along Judy Dunn 444-5228. 21, Choral Tuesday March 25 - 26. Cost per Session – morning, with a large open space for the kids to play while the moms afternoon or evening (all ages) – $2, Awards Night ($12 max/ Hadashville visit. Contact Karen at klenzrpeters@hotmail.com. family) – $4, Dance Highlights Evening – $4, Festival pass Ste. Anne Tae Kwon Do - Every Wednesday at 6 pm at the Hadashville The Ste. Anne Lions Club in cooperation with Ste. Anne (all sessions & Awards Nights/Highlights evenings) – $12, Community Club (Reynolds Recreational Centre) from 6 years Piney Chevalier de Colomb invites you to a Fundraising “SOUPER” Southeastern Stars Gala Concert – No charge. Official Program old to adults. Pursue a black belt or learn new skills, great Open Curling Bonspiel – TBA. Contact 204-437-2284, 204- Lunch in support of a young cancer victim from Ste. Anne on available for $8 starting February 1, from Steinbach Cultural stress release and have an excellent workout at the same 437-2060 or rmofpiney@wiband.ca. Sunday, March 2 from 10:30 am - 2:30 pm at the Knights of Arts Centre or Outbach Music (behind the Post office). time. Cost after registration fee is $40/month per person. Ask Columbus Hall in Ste. Anne. All funds raised go to the family! about 2 week free trial. Contact Shelly at 204-426-5266 or Pineland Lions Poker Derby – TBA. Contact 204-437-2284, Various Soups, Fresh Buns, Beverages, Dessert. Adults - $ 7.00, Book Sale - Bethesda Healthcare Auxiliary – On Tuesdays KSTA.academy@gmail.com. 204-437-2060 or rmofpiney@wiband.ca. Under 16 - $5.00, Under 4 – Free. There will also be a Donation (gently and not-so gently) used book sale at Clearspring Jar available for those who wish to contribute more to the Centre. Book donations accepted year round at Clearspring Ile-des-Chênes Bingo - Every 2nd Friday. Centre from 9:30 am – 4 pm. cause. Blood Drive - In honour clinic on Tuesday, February 18 at the TransCanada Centre from 4:30pm-8:30pm. Contact 1-888-2- Prawda Seine River Services for Seniors – Invite to all seniors interested Healthy Eating Cooking Classes - Every other week on DONATE to book an appointment. Community Breakfast – Pre-Valentines – On Saturday, in the Wii Bowling game to come, try it out and have fun. On Thursdays at South East Helping Hands. No Charge, enjoy a February 8 starting at 8:30 am at the Reynolds Recreation Monday at1 pm, at Le Club Jovial. Contact Juliette Rowan at meal with other community members and learn how to plan Our Lady of the Roses Prayer Group – Meets on the first Saturday Centre. Experience a beautiful breakfast with your Sweetie at 204-424-5285 Community Resource Coordinator for local & prepare healthy meals on a budget. Contact and register of every month, at 6:30 pm to recite the Rosary and learn about our pre Valentines Day Breakfast. All you can eat and you will services or e-mail labseinerss@gmail.com. 204-326-2599 or southeasthelpinghands@gmail.com. Our Lady of the Roses, Mary Help of Mothers and receive Blessed be delighted with the menu. It’s a can’t miss breakfast. Rose Petals and other Sacramentals from Blessed Mother’s Adult Book Club - Tuesdays from 7 – 9 pm. Bring book Ste. Geneviève place of miracles. Contact Corinna 204-878-4908 or email her Louis Riel Day - On Saturday, February 15 a Buffet Breakfast Winter Kick Off – On Saturday February 8 or in case of snowdate suggestions or peruse our book lists. Meet some other book at corinnaswetz@hotmail.com for more info and register. and Indoor Poker Derby at Reynolds Community Club in Prawda. on Saturday February 15 from 11 am – 3 pm at the Community lovers too and bring a friend. At the Jake Epp Library 255 Breakfast Adults $8, 6 to 12 years $4, 5 and under Free. Indoor Centre. Free admission, canteen open (chili, hotdogs, drinks, Elmdale St. Contact Tracey Pankratz 204-326-6841 Kleefeld Poker Derby, 50/50 draw, Silent Auction. Come out and to visit hot chococolate. Donations accepted. Milk Jug Curling (Team programming@jakeepplibrary.com. Community Playgroup - for parents, caregivers and children your neighbours and support the community club. Registration at 11am, Public skating, Sleigh Rides and have ages 0-5. Activities include time for playing, stories, songs and your kids bring their crazy carpets. Contact Tashia 204-422- Ladies Get Fit Classes - Sponsored by Eastman Immigrant snacks. Every 2nd and 4th Thursday of the month at the Kleefeld Circuit 30 - Alternate aerobic and weight exercises, with cool 9964. Services, every Wednesday at 7:15 pm at the Woodlawn School Rec Centre. Contact Irene Ascough 204-377-5013. down and stretch exercises. Wear comfortable clothing, clean gym. Aerobic, circuit training, weights, mats and stretching runners, and bring a bottle of water. Cost $2/class, Mondays Annual Tache Game and Fish Trophy Banquet – On Saturday exercises. Suitable for all ages and levels of fitness. Register La Broquerie and Thursdays at 7 pm, in the Reynolds School Gym. Contact February 22 at the Community Centre. Cost for Dinner, adults contact Lois 204-346-6609. Comedy Festival - Just for Laughs – On Saturday, February 15 Wendy 204-348-2433. $20 and youths $10. Contact Evelyn-204-422-8483 for tickets. from 8 – 11 pm at Centre D. Tickets $15. With 4 comedians, Steinbach Girl Guides - Every Tuesday at the United Church of 2 from Quebec and 2 local Manitobans. Cash Bar. Courtesy of Busy Bodies Playgroup – Every Wednesday from 9 - 11 am at Library Night - Bibliothèque Taché Library at the Community Steinbach, 541 Main St. Registration for girls 5-17. Develop the La Broquerie Cultural Committee. Contact Annette Tétrault the Reynolds School Gym. Free to parents and children. Snacks Centre on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month, from 6:30 personal values and well-being, self-respect and respect for 204-371-6982 or cclabroquerie@gmail.com. provided. Contact Cassie 204-793-8290. - 8 pm. Selection of books in both French and English, all others; promote fun, friendship, adventure and challenges ages. Over 21,000 books including audiobooks, DVDs, CDs, through new experiences; develop leadership and decisionWii Love Seniors Bowling Challenge 2013-2014 - 5 challenges Richer large print books and magazines plus they can import books making skills; give service to the community; value the natural in different towns including La Broquerie, Lorette, Ste-Anne Winterfest – On Sunday, March 2 from 1 – 4 pm at the Park from any library in Manitoba. Special requests can be made to environment. and St. Adolphe and then one more day of fun to end it all. behind the fire hall. Sleigh rides, clown, face painting, bond the librarian, Brandi Schmitz at 204-878 - 9488, Challenges are on Wednesdays from 1 - 3 pm. Refreshments fire, marshmallow roast (bring your own roasting stick, free hot bibliotachelibrary.com or in person. Green Drinks South Eastman - South Eastman Transition provided. We ask for a donation of a Loonie each event. dogs, hot chocolate, coffee. Lots of games and a 50/50 draw. Initiative presents Green Drinks South Eastman. On the 3rd Beginners welcome. Contact Juliette 204-424-5285 or Denise Tickets $2 ea. Contact Charlene Kratavicius 204-422-6992 or Steinbach Tuesday of every month at 7 pm at LBees, 5-275 Main St. Grab 204-883-2880. richerdaycare@gmail.com. Anything Goes Curling Bonspiel – From Friday – Sunday, a coffee and discuss sustainable living. Contact February 7 - 9 at the Steinbach Curling Club. Whether you are rebecca_hiebert@yahoo.com. Seine River Services for Seniors- Health Centre/Centre de Santé Seine River Services for Seniors - Tai Chi – On Thursday at 6:30 young or old, boy or girl, get 3 friends, come, and see why from Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 4 pm. Services and programs pm at the Richer School, Gym. Free. Instructor Sara Trudeau. curling can be an exciting time. Curl all weekend for $160 per The Steinbach Rotary Club - meets every Monday at noon at for seniors. Income Tax help, Lifeline, mobility equipment, Seniors are encouraged to consult with a doctor before starting team including supper on Saturday. Hope to see you there. the Pat Porter Centre for active living. Contact Cornie at 326foot care, hair care, transportation, home maintenance, yard this program. For all programs, you must register with Seine Contact Wilf Peters 326-3676 or steinbachcurl@live.ca. 3155. maintenance, Telecheck, E.R.I.K. program, puzzles and games. River Services for Seniors – Contact Juliette Rowan Community Contact Community Resource Coordinator Juliette Rowan, 204- Resource Coordinator at 204-424-5575 for Richer services or Winter Carnival – On Saturday, February 8 from 1 – 6 pm at Mental Health Information and Support sessions - for family 424-5285 or labseinerss@gmail.com. Shopping Trips to email labseinerss@gmail.com. the Centennial Arena. Contact Jason Peters, and friends of people with mental health issues are held the Winnipeg’s St.Vital Mall every first Thursday of the month, jpeters@steinbach.ca, 204.346.6217 or Amber Reitsma 2nd Tuesday of every month from 7 – 8:30 pm at the Eden East leaving at 10 am - 3 pm. Cost $15. Steinbach’s Clearspring Richer Recovery AA - Group meets every Thursday and Saturday 204.346.6231, areitsma@steinbach.ca. building, 21 Loewen Blvd. Contact Kim at 371-0824 or email Centre every last Thursday of the month, from 10 am - 1 pm. from 7:30 - 8:30 pm at LUD Hall in Richer. Contact Lee at 204eastmanmss@mts.net Cost $10. 451-0255. Steinbach & Area Garden Club - On Monday, February 10 at 7 pm at the Mennonite Heritage Village. ‘Indulge Your Senses: MS Monthly Self-Help group meeting - for people living with Lorette Monday Night Bingos - To raise funds for Stacey Pchajek Growing Herbs Indoors’ with David Hanson, owner, Sage multiple sclerosis. The group meets on the second Thursday Citizens on Patrol Program (COPP) – Volunteer opportunities. Memorial Foundation Inc. The foundation provides Gardens in Winnipeg. Rosemary, lemon thyme, garlic chives, evening of each month from 6 - 7 pm at Fernwood Place If you go for walks, bike rides, jogs or even just drive around scholarships, bursaries and prizes to students graduating lavender and more aromas will awaken your midwinter apartments. Contact Nadine Konyk, Rural Client Services the community, please put on a COPP vest and show your grades 8 and 12. Children Under 14 must be accompanied by sleeping senses! Prairie Oils & Vinegars and Old Church Bakery Coordinator at 1-800-268-7582 or email support or help with administrative duties. Can you donate an an adult to be on premises and must play bingo. Doors Open will be there to taste their wonderful products. Everyone nadine.konyk@mssociety.ca. hour per month? Contact Trevor, 204-955-3434 at 5:30 pm at the Young at Heart Club 22 Dawson Rd. in Richer. welcome! Door prizes! Refreshments! $5 non-member fee. Lorettecopp@gmail.com. MGCC License # BI/BO4164. Contact Doreen Pchajek at 422- Contact sagardenclub.com. MS Lunch Group- on fourth Thursday of every month, from 12 5243 or doreen@spmf.ca. – 1 pm at the Village Green Restaurant. Contact Nadine Konyk, New Horizons Seniors - Play cards, Scrabble, Wii and more. Infant/Child CPR Workshop - On Monday, February 10 from Rural Client Services Coordinator 204-326-1434 or email Drop in Tuesdays 1-5 pm at Foyer Notre Dame Lorette 12 Roseau 6:30 - 8:30 pm at Anna’s House. Learn the basics of First Aid nadine.konyk@mssociety.ca. St.Amant Ave. Contact Iris 204-878-3552. Zvizda Ukrainian Dance Fundraiser – On Saturday, February and CPR by a certified First Aid and CPR Instructor. Great for 15 from 5:30 pm - 1am at the Shevchenko Ukrainian Centre anyone with families. Come join us for a relaxed, informal Mood Disorders Association of Manitoba individual and support Lorette Metis Local will be holding a Metis Harvester Information in Roseau. Perogy and sausage supper. Featuring Corny Rempel learning environment. Contact 204-346-0413 or groups - for persons experiencing depression, anxiety, stress, Workshop on March 22 at the Lorette Parish Hall at 10 am. as Elvis and Johnny Cash. Silent auction and cash bar. Tickets annashouse@annashouse.ca. bi-polar disorder and other mental health/emotional concerns. Fee: $10. Lunch will be served. Everybody welcomed. Please for adults are $25, children 10 and under are $15. Contact Meets on the first Wednesday of each month at Jake Epp notify Carol or Lorraine at 204-878-3704 to register. Lorrie 204-427-2763 or Kim 204-425-3753. International Cooking Class – On Tuesdays, February 11 and Library from 7 – 9 pm. Contact Judy Dunn 204-444-5228. 18, from 6 – 8 pm. Eastman Immigrant Services has invited Information and Support Sessions Marchand Sprague immigrant newcomers to teach a cooking class. Cook a delicious Community Club AGM - On Tuesday, February 25 at 7 pm at the Sprague & District Historical Museum Dinner & Dance - TBA. meals from Colombia and next Filipino food. Hands on The Bethesda Regional Healthcare Auxiliary - meets on the Marchand Community Club. There are currently 4-positions on Contact 204-437-2284, 204-437-2060 or opportunity to prepare new and delicious foods, go home with first Tuesday of every month except for the months of July and the Board of Directors up for elections at this time. Come out rmofpiney@wiband.ca. recipes, know how & insider secrets along with having the August at the Bethesda Hospital. We welcome anyone as your input and skills are very much needed and appreciated. chance to enjoy new friends in our community. Contact Lois interested in auxiliary work. Contact Verna Thiessen at 326Contact any member of the board for more information. Bingo - Every 2nd Wednesday. Loewen Epp 204.346.6609 or 3028. lois@eastmanimmigrantservices.com. Middlebro St. Adolphe Steinbach and Area Lions Club meets on the second and fourth Poker Derby – TBA. Contact 204-437-2284 or 204-437-2060 Mixed Bonspiel - On Wednesday, February 26 – Sunday, March WBN Networking Lunch – On Wednesday, February 12 from Wednesdays of every month at the Magnolia Restaurant. Contact or rmofpiney@wiband.ca 2 a mixed team tournament. Teams must consist of two male 11:30 am - 1 pm at All Dee’s Restaurant, 104-320 Main St. 204-326-2313. and two female curlers, with the throwers alternating in gender. Networking, fun and informative presentation by Diane Mitchell Cost $160/team.Karaoke on Saturday Night. Contact Stadnyk, Professional Organizer. Members and future members Carillon Toastmasters - meetings are open to adults who want Breakfast and Social - every Tuesday morning, 7:30 - 9 am curlstadolphe@gmail.com to register. welcome. Contact and RSVP by Monday, February 10 to to improve their leadership and communication skills. Thursday except the last Tuesday of the month when the social is held evenings starting at 7 pm at the Jake Epp Public Library 255 diane@embracingsimplicity.ca. instead. Lunch starts at noon at the Mitchell and Area Seniors Wii Love Seniors Bowling Challenge 2013-2014 - 5 challenges Elmdale Street, Contact Doreen 204-326-7525. Centre. Contact 204-326-6944. in different towns including La Broquerie, Lorette, Ste-Anne Legion Cribbage Night – On Friday, February 14 from 7 – 10 and St. Adolphe and then one more day of fun to end it all. Our pm at the Legion Hall, 294 Lumber Ave. Evening of crib, door Steinbach AA 12 Step Recovery Program - Meetings are held New Bothwell next challenge on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 in St. Adolphe prize, free snacks and lunch after cards. Coffee and cash bar on Wednesdays at 7 pm. Steinbach United Church, 541 Main Winter Carnival - Starts on Friday, March 7 to Saturday March at Le Club Amical - 344 Main Street. Challenges are on are available. Bring a friend and test your cribbage luck. Cash St. Ring the front door bell.

Dawson Trail Dispatch Young moms to be - Bi-weekly support group starts at 4:30 pm at Anna’s House B-11, Hwy 12N. Contact 204-346-0413. Vassar Snowmobile & Car Poker Derby – TBA. Contact 204-437-2284, 204-437-2060 or rmofpiney@wiband.ca. Woodridge Bingo - Every 2nd Sunday night at 7 pm. General Get Better Together - Take control of your health and learn to live better with your ongoing health condition with a free 6week health awareness program in your area: Steinbach - Mondays from 6:15 - 8:15 pm. Landmark - Thursdays from 6:45 - 8:45 pm. Marchand - Wednesdays from 7 - 9 pm. St. Malo - Mondays from 1:30 - 3:30 pm. Contact to register Madeleine at Southern Health-Santé Sud at 204-346-6692. Free Monthly Bus Trips to the Casinos of Winnipeg- Join us for a great day of fun and friendship. We visit McPhillips Street Station in the morning and Club Regent in the afternoon. Pick ups in Steinbach, Ste. Anne and Paradise Village. Must be 18 years of age or older. Prizes and cash giveaways every trip. Bingo played on the bus to and from the casinos for those wishing to play. Contact Marilyn at 204-326-4939 to reserve your seat. The next scheduled trips are on Tuesdays, February 11, March 11 and April 8. Super Start Program - A Healthy Baby program with the Southern Regional Health Authority. Program for pregnant women and families with infants up to one year of age. Sessions include song and rhyme time, discussions and games on topics related to healthy babies and healthy moms. Door prizes, nutritious snacks and milk coupons for all participating expectant moms or mothers who have babies up to six months of age. Contact: Terry from Super Start at 346-7021 or just drop in. Blumenort - EMC Church on Thursday, February 6 at 10 am – 12 pm Niverville - Community Fellowship Church on Tuesday, February 11 at 10 am – 12 pm Ste. Anne - Dayspring Fellowship Church on Thursday, February 13 at 10 am – 12 pm Kleefeld – Mitchell Fellowship Church on Thursday, February 27 at 10 am – 12 pm St. Malo – St. Malo School on Wednesday, February 19 at 10 am – 12 pm St. Pierre-Jolys - Health Corner on Thursday, February 20 at 10am-12pm Ste. Agathe - Community Hall Centre on Tuesday, February 18 at 10 am – 12 pm Lorette - Seine River Church on Tuesday, February 25 at 10 am – 12 pm Mitchell - Fellowship Church on Thursday, February 27 at 10 am – 12 pm

Hylife Foods Wins Export Award La Broquerie based Hylife Foods has been named as this year ’s recipient of the Export Award by the Canadian Manufactures and Exporters association. Hylife CEO Grant Lazaruk said this very exciting news to the company. “We’ve been expanding our exports, both in production and live hogs,” explained Lazaruk. “It is nice to be recognized for exporting into other countries.” Lazaruk said one of their success stories has been the shipment of fresh, chilled pork to Japan from Neepawa. “Japan is a higher value market and we wanted to develop a strong chilled pork program in Japan,” Lazaruk explained. “We leveraged our system and we were able to grow our fresh pork into Japan rapidly.” Hylife began in 1994, growing into the largest privately held hogproduction company in Canada. It is the twelfth largest in North America. The company, along with 1,760 employees, has diversified from raising feeder pigs to finishing hogs for market and selling genetics on different continents. They process 1.6 million hogs per year in Canada and the U.S. Hylife Foods LP will receive the Export Award at a gala banquet on March 26.


More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Local Musician Breaks Top 100 Country Album By Marianne Curtis On January 20 local country singer Luke Reimer released his debut CD, Miles on this Truck which broke the top 100 Country albums on the Canadian iTunes Store on the same day it was released. The 19-year-old from Steinbach uses his powerful low voice and creates spirit to contribute to his reputation as a must-see performer and skilled songwriter. For the past year Reimer had spent countless hours in the studio and he is excited with the release of the finished product. “It feels like it’s been a life-long project to get to this point, but I’m really just pulling out of the driveway with ‘Miles on this Truck’,” stated Reimer. “I’ve been writing songs over the past year, working on my craft and working to become a better singer by taking voice lessons.” Reimer released his first single, Smokin’, off the album in November. Like every song on the disc, it deliberately carries a positive message. “It’s about a guy graduating from high school, trying to figure out the world,” explained Reimer. “The message is to follow your dreams and not let others tell you what to do.” Reimer said he hopes Miles on this

February 2014

Habitat for Humanity to Build in Grunthal By Marianne Curtis

Local country singer Luke Reimer released his debut CD, Miles on this Truck, which broke the top 100 Country albums on iTunes on the same day of being released.

Truck will be the start of a major career in Canadian country music. “I want to work hard, keep writing music, and hopefully take this to the next level,” continued Reimer. “That is my ultimate dream.” Now that Reimer has released his debut CD, he plans to hit the local summer festival circuit to boost sales and bring his music to

communities throughout the region. To celebrate his success, Reimer is hosting a concert in Winnipeg that will be the official kick-off for the CD. The concert features performances by Shannon Patterson, Rhia Rae, and Bryce Pallister and takes place at the Park Theatre at 698 Osborne Street on February 8, starting at 7 pm.

Two deserving families will see themselves in a new home now that the Southeast Chapter of Habitat for Humanity has purchased land in Grunthal for the purpose of their next project. According to Harry Friesen, the project will be similar to what is currently being constructed in Richer. “We have purchased two lots on the northeast side of Grunthal and we will be building two single family homes,” stated Friesen. In April, families interested in the project will be invited to a meeting where they can get more information on the project and fill out an application. Two deserving families will be chosen after a selection process.

15

Sheri Bueckert, Chair of the Family Selection Committee for Habitat for Humanity Southeast, said that while the meeting is not until April they want to give families a chance to prepare for the process. “There has been a huge demand for housing in Grunthal and we expect quite a few families to apply,” added Bueckert. “By getting the word out early we hope that more people apply.” The Grunthal project will be the third build undertaken by the Southeast Chapter of Habitat for Humanity in the last three years. This coming June 2 families are expected to move into their new single-family dwellings in Richer. The previous year two single mothers from Steinbach took up residence in a duplex in La Broquerie. To become a Habitat for Humanity homeowner, the family has to demonstrate a need, have an ability to pay based on income and be willing to work alongside Habitat on the project. For example, single families need to put in 350 hours of sweat equity while a couple would have to put in 500 hours. Habitat for Humanity Manitoba (SE Chapter) offers families living in difficult situations the opportunity to break the cycle of poverty. Habitat homes are sold at market value with selected family offered a hand up with no down payment and interest-free mortgages.


16

More Than Just News!

February 2014

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Keep the Faith What does it mean to be faithful? In a day when marriages are more unstable than at any other time and it seems business and personal ethics have abandoned the old paths of right and wrong, is faithfulness a dying part of our society? Webster’s dictionary defines faithful as true, exact and firm in adhering to duties of a personal, moral, social, business or religious nature. Faithfulness never changes with time or circumstances in life. The current issue of Reader’s Digest named a couple who have been married for 78 years. That’s faithfulness!! The ‘Old Faithful’ in Yellowstone National Park gets its name from the fact that, unlike other geysers, it follows a dependable time schedule. Once every 65 minutes, it shoots a stream of boiling water over 175 feet in the air. The God of the Bible is called faithful in Isaiah 49:7. Then in Psalms 119:90, it says about God, “Thy faithfulness is unto all generations.” Lamentation 3:23 even says of God, “Great is thy faithfulness.” It is a comfort, joy and encouragement to realize my God is faithful. In fact, one of the names given to God in Revelations 19:11 is ‘Faithful’. Faithfulness does not begin with an outward action, but an inward attitude of the heart. Although God is faithful, His desire for His children is to emulate that same Divine attribute. God is seeking men and women today who are willing to stay faithful in spite of the circumstances of life.

David, in the Old Testament, made this statement, “Help, Lord … for the faithful fail from among the sons of men.” This was true in Bible times and it’s still true today. As a veterinarian, I have seen better examples of faithfulness in animals that in most people I meet. The Bible even tells us, “Doth not even nature itself teach you?” But, even today, with God’s help, man can still learn to be faithful. Proverbs 28:20 gives us this promise, “A faithful man shall abound with blessings.” If you want God’s blessings, faithfulness must become an integral part of your life. I Corinthians 4:2 says, “It is required in stewards that a man be found faithful.” Wouldn’t it be a blessing to hear these words from our Saviour at the end of our life, “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” If you are not a child of God, let me encourage you to seek Him faithfully and you will find Him through His Word. If you are a Christian, determine with God’s help to be faithful in every area of your life. God bless as you seek to follow and serve Him faithfully.

La Broquerie Launches Arena Fundraising Project By Marianne Curtis The La Broquerie Community and Recreation Centre expansion committee is currently inviting businesses and individuals to help raise funds for the La Broquerie arena expansion project. The municipality gave the green light for a $1.5 million expansion to the community’s arena two months ago. RM of La Broquerie Reeve Claude Lussier said that the municipality has seen a tremendous amount of construction and population growth over the past decade. This growth has also shown up in the local schools and in the use of the c o m m u n i t y ’s recreation facilities. “Le Club Sportif has seen registration numbers more than double in this time and the La Broquerie Arena and Caisse Centre are seeing optimum use,” explained Lussier. Over 200 children use the facility for hockey, figure skating and the CanSkate program. The La Broquerie arena has been kept in top condition and has been able to weather the test of time in many areas due to this upkeep. In order to continue as a top-notch functioning arena and community meeting place, some improvements are necessary, Lussier added. “The RM of La Broquerie is proud to announce that we are supporting an expansion project starting the summer of 2014,” stated Lussier. “The project will include five dressing rooms, improved lobby, canteen and community hall facilities and a community meeting room.” However, before the project commences the

Kehler Retires after 37 Years with Steinbach Retiring City Manager Jack Kehler had plenty of time to reminisce at a reception held to celebrate 37 years of dedication and service with the City of Steinbach. During the event, which took place

The RM of La Broquerie and Le Club Sportif have begun to fund raise for the $1.5 million arena upgrade for the community’s recreation centre.

goal of the committee is to bring in an excess of $400,000 through fundraising. The RM will be working with the La Broquerie arena expansion committee to bring funds together to complete this project. The committee has put together a fundraising opportunity open to businesses and individuals to get involved in this project. Parties can bid on the naming rights to nine different areas of the expansion. Proposals for the naming rights will be accepted until March 14 by the RM of La Broquerie.

January 23, City Hall’s lobby was filled with Kehler’s friends, including some former council members who he had not seen in more than 20 years. “I had a great time reminiscing and visiting with friends and colleagues,” said Kehler. He estimates he has attended 1,800 city council meetings and worked with 6 different mayors and 37 councillors. “The most challenging part of the job is managing the politics and dealing with the politicians,” Kehler admitted. “Managers, by nature, are usually rational, logical, sequential, linear thinkers. When you bring

politics to it, there’s a whole new element.” He added that the trick to being able to work with that many different personalities is to stick to the basics. “I’ve always followed the motto, ‘As long as it’s not illegal, immoral or unethical,’ it’s my job to make sure to implement,” Kehler added. “It’s actually worked out quite well with all the councils I’ve worked with.” Steinbach Mayor Chris Goertzen commended Kehler for his high level of commitment to the city throughout his career. “He was very committed to our city; it was evident in everything he did,” stated Goertzen. “We are going to miss him in the office.” Kehler began his retirement the following week.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

February 2014

17

Multiple Challenges Titus 3:8-9... 8) This is a trustworthy saying. And I want you to stress these things, so that those who have trusted in God may be careful to devote themselves to doing what is good. These things are excellent and profitable for everyone. 9) But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, arguments, and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless. (NIV) Multiple Challenges: Scripture teaches that we are to speak evil of no one. Rather, we should strive to show a gentle spirit when interacting with others. I would do well to remember that I am pretty foolish myself at times. The very thing that I criticize in others is likely one of my own weaknesses. Yes! I might be tempted to call attention to someone’s faults just to take the eye off my own problems. We should avoid controversies and foolish discussions; they are always useless and futile. So often, an argument only strengthens a person in what they believed before. We should do all we can to correct a person in such a way that they will be given a boost or strengthened then devote our time to positive Christian service. I think it is right to say that we ought to be ready to help since what is asked of us is good. There have been times during our coffee time chatter in our neighbourhood restaurant where some folks complain about boredom. Could it be that boredom might be a result of being somewhat selfish or full of oneself? Since I live with the idea of, “Why should I do it? Let someone else do it,” I am bound to be bored. The thing that makes life interesting is service. The follower of Christ is called to be welcoming others. We are not the aggressive type. We are not fighters amongst ourselves. This does not mean that we will sit back and allow others to steam-roll over us. We will stand for the principles, which we believe to be right, but we will never be so opinionated as to believe that no other way than our own is right. We will allow others the same right that we claim, so that they, too, can express their Christian convictions based on the Inspired Word of God in a wholesome atmosphere. There are times when I remind myself to keep my displeasure under control. I am old enough to know when to be angry and when not to be angry. Sometimes we must patiently bear wrongs done to us, but must always be ready to spring up and help those who are being trampled on. Qualities like these are only possible for those in whose heart the Holy Spirit is in control. Life experiences teach many lessons. Some are good; some are not so good. Some, in fact, have been caused by none other than me. How I work with the circumstances that I am directly responsible for mirrors my Christian walk and talk. I have found it tough to undo that which I have created. It is tough to apologize, to restart a relationship. It usually means I have to wrestle with a selfish attitude and take advice. When I do that, I must admit I was wrong and that I will attempt not to mess up and will even work to be charitable and to profit from my mistakes. It is great to keep out of a boiling pot so that we can make the best of the little issues in life. When I/we do that, we learn to shoulder a deserved blame. Who knows, we might even begin to recognize there is a silver lining in most of our struggles. If I push my private opinions against all the teaching and traditions of Scripture, and I have decided that everybody else is wrong and I am the only person with right ideas, I am setting myself up for failure. We must always be very careful of any opinions, which separate us from the fellowship of the Holy Spirit and other believers. True faith does not divide the fellowship it unites. Our text tells us that these things that we were told are all true; insist on them so Christians will be careful to do good deeds all the time, for this is not only right, but will bring good results. Would you pray this prayer with me? “Lord Jesus, come into my heart. Forgive my sins. I want my life to change. My thoughts and my attitude need to change. I do not have the peace in my heart that I yearn for. I really want that peace, joy and happiness that fulfills my heart’s desire. Please let the Holy Spirit help me be the kind of Christian that will honour Your Name. Amen.”

Tache Approves Recycling Contract RM of Tache residents will continue to see the benefits of curbside recycling pickups. At the end of the year, the RM of Tache put out a call for tenders from companies capable of providing curbside recycling pick-up throughout the municipality. The municipality received three tenders from JR Waste Haulers Ltd. at $ 280,000, Pak-Man Disposals Inc. for $163,800 and The N49 Group for $ 145,875. Each bid was for a per year basis and included GST. The RM of Tache awarded the contract, which runs from January 1, 2014 to December 21, 2015, to The N49 Group.


18

February 2014

More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Local Olympic Athletes Go for Gold in Sochi By Marianne Curtis

Jocelyne Larocque from Ste. Anne is the only Manitoban heading to Sochi, Russia as part of Team Canada’s Olympic Women’s Hockey team.

In a few short weeks, residents from southern Manitoba will be keeping an eye out for two local Olympians while they represent our region and country as part of Team Canada at the Sochi Olympics. Twenty-seven year old Falcon Lake native Megan Imrie’s drive and determination will keep her climbing steadily to the top. She is ready to compete as part of Team Canada in the biathlon, which includes cross-country skiing and rifle shooting. This will be Imrie’s second Olympic appearance as part of Team Canada. While competing in the Vancouver 2010 Olympics the biathlete participated in three races. Her best finish was 15th place as part of the women’s biathlon 4-x 6kilometre relay. Twenty-five-year-old Jocelyne Larocque of Ste. Anne is heading to the Sochi Olympics to play defence for Canada’s Olympic Women’s Hockey Team. She will be Manitoba’s sole contribution to the team. Although a member of Canada’s National Women’s Team since 2008, this will be Larocque’s first Olympic appearance. She was released from Team Canada’s centralized roster just before the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. This time, she is among 21 players who will head to Sochi, including 12 veterans of the 2010 gold medal-winning team. The 2014 Winter Olympics take place from February 7 to 23 in Sochi, Russia.

Hanover SD Avoids Custodian Strike The Hanover School Division has managed to successfully curtail a custodial strike by reaching a tentative contract agreement with custodians. In the middle of January custodial employees working at Hanover School Division (HSD) voted in favour of taking strike action. The vote came after the employer rejected an offer by the union in October 2013 to submit the contract dispute to binding arbitration. Represented by Education, Service and Health Care Union Local 306, affiliated with the Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC), “This is about fairness HSD and the union have been in negotiations for a renewed collective agreement since the spring of 2012. An impasse was reached in and respect. Nobody November 2012 when employees rejected the wage offer from HSD. A provincial conciliation officer was called on to assist, however, a wants to go on satisfactory resolution has not been reached. strike.” “Taking a strike vote was a last resort,” said Geoff Dueck Thiessen, CLAC Winnipeg regional director. “This is about fairness and respect. Nobody wants to go on strike.” At issue was that the custodial assistants working in the evening and make up the majority of employees in the dispute. They are paid on average between $1.80 and $3.50 less per hour than other classifications of HSD custodians doing similar work. They are also paid significantly less than in neighbouring unionized school divisions. “These employees clean schools in the evenings, performing difficult labour under time constraints and receive dramatically lower wages than their own colleagues and other unionized custodial staff in neighbouring unionized school divisions,” added Thiessen. “These very hard-working people are being dramatically underpaid, and employees have decided it’s worth bringing it to the community’s attention and pushing for a fair settlement.” Finalization of the agreement is dependent on both parties ratifying it in the next couple of weeks. No details of the contract agreement will be released until after the ratification.

Falcon Lake native Megan Imrie is ready for her second appearance in the Olympics.

Doors Open for Regional Skills Centre in Steinbach On January 16, Workplace Education Manitoba (WEM) celebrated the grand opening of the WEST Centre Steinbach that will serve as the Essential Skills Training hub for southeastern Manitoba. According to Kim Shukla, Regional Coordinator, the WEST Centre offers individualized support for people with a defined, concrete workplace or employment related training goal and need assistance in upgrading any of the nine Essential Skills. “Essential Skills are the skills that people need for learning, work and life,” explained Shukla. “They are used in the community and the workplace, in different forms and at different levels of complexity.” Essential Skills are broken down into nine areas in the workplace; Reading, Document Use, Numeracy, Writing, Oral Communication, Working with Others, Thinking Skills, Digital Technology, and Continuous Learning. “The 21st century workplace needs a skilled workforce that’s efficient, effective and adaptable, while workers need the skills required to perform successfully at work,” Shukla continued. “Let us help, our doors are open to work with trades qualifiers, apprentices, local businesses and individuals in the workplace.” WEST Centre Steinbach is located at 90 Brandt Street and is open weekly on Tuesday and Thursday from 3:30 - 7:30 pm.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

February 2014

19

Portion of Steve’s Livestock Fleet Goes up in Smoke By Marianne Curtis In the middle of January, one of the country’s largest livestock haulers lost one third of its fleet in a massive fire in Blumenort. During the early hours of the morning on January 13 fire crews from four detachments responded to a massive blaze at Steve’s Livestock Transport in Blumenort. By the time crews arrived a large storage shed was fully engulfed. Thirty-nine trucks stored within the building were destroyed in the blaze. Fire crews from Blumenort, Steinbach, Ste. Anne and Kleefeld fire departments were on site for hours working to contain the blaze. The fire was so massive; RCMP evacuated half a dozen homes as a precautionary measure. Thirty-nine trucks were destroyed in a warehouse fire at Steve’s Livestock Transport in Blumenort on January 13. There were no injuries. Photo by Marianne Curtis Bill Rempel, Vice President of operations, told media the loss was a huge surprise. “It was a big shock and surprise; we are very grateful that there were no people involved,” stated Rempel. He added that while the loss is extensive, operations would continue as always. “Things will be very chaotic for awhile, but we are very fortunate to be still able to fill all our loads and our orders,” Rempel added. “Local businesses have stepped up and we are grateful for their help.” Steve’s Livestock Transport hauls livestock throughout Manitoba and into Saskatchewan and Alberta, Rempel said. The fire commissioner’s office has not yet determined the cause but estimates the damage to be $11 million.

Students Responsive to Butting Out

Early Warning System Suggested The City of Steinbach’s Emergency Measures coordinator is urging council to set up an early warning system in the community that would include the installation of early warning sirens. At a recent meeting, Denis Vassart told council their main concern remains tornadoes and hazardous goods spills. “An early warning system that covers the entire city would be valuable in the event of a tornado or another emergency event,” Vassart told council. An early warning system would provide the city with the means of warning residents of impending disaster and give them instructions to either evacuate or take shelter. To ensure complete coverage of the City, Vassart recommends installing four pods of sirens at a cost of $170,000. Steinbach Mayor Chris Goertzen said that council would discuss the matter further before making any decisions. “Our emergency measures have done a good job explaining why this system would be valuable to our city,” stated Goertzen. “Council will have to look at this information and decide what our priorities are; if we are going to spend money on an early warning system and if so, when.” Goertzen added that council has nothing in the budget for an early warning system but that can change upon further discussion. Vassart also recommended that the City of Steinbach council consider establishing a hazardous goods route around the city that would force trucks around the city to avoid fuel or chemical spills.

By Marianne Curtis The Hanover School Division’s Smoking Cessation councillor said that students are embracing healthy lifestyle opportunities offered by the division. Angela Stoesz, Smoking Cessation Counsellor at SRSS and Niverville Collegiate, said she was given the opportunity to share how a partnership between the South Regional Health Association and Hanover School Division works towards a proactive, educational approach at reaching grades 5-12 at a recent conference. “The prevention of junior high, high school and adult smoking habits from forming is the goal,” stated Stoesz. “Classroom and small group education and motivational interviewing go hand in hand in Hanover with students responding and seeking out help.” Stoesz said that programs including the Lungs are for Life, The Dare Program, The SWAT program and having a smoking cessation counsellors in the high school work as a fabulous proactive approach to educate about and really encourage healthy lifestyles. Overall, 150 students put their name in a draw, which also gave opportunity to say if they were a smoker or non-smoker and if they wanted help to quit.

Rat River Team Captures Silver The Rat River Atom A2 hockey team, coached by Colin McFarlane, Russ Gosselin and Rick Magne captured Silver at the Grunthal Atom A tournament on January 11-12. Back row: Mackenzie Dixon, Jaden Gosselin, Marcus Gobeil, Stephen Chubaty, Braeden McFarlane, Miguel Audet, Colton Magne. Front Row: Ryan Fuchs, Jayden Catellier, Ashton Dubois, Cody Gunderson, Seth Laroche.

“Several voiced a desire to get help, which just continues this great process of educating the masses and helping individuals make healthy decisions,” Stoesz explained. The Hanover School Division launched a smoking cessation program back in 2011 after the province stepped in and demanded that the school remain smoke free after a smoking shelter was erected on school property for student use. After removing the shelter the school division launched a smoking cessation program in an effort help students quit smoking instead of giving them a safer place to indulge in the habit.


20

February 2014

More Than Just News!

Athletes Storm Steinbach for Badminton Top Prize

Dawson Trail Dispatch

RCMP Seize Marihuana Hidden in Semi-Trailer

Photo courtesy of RCMP

Girls Doubles Winners (from left): Niti Mehta, Julia Tan, Jeanette Ding, Tiffany Tantakoun, Breanna Shorting and Sarah Miller.

Athletes from as far as Minot, North Dakota and Brandon, MB came to Steinbach to take part in the 2014 Yonex Eastman Open Badminton Tournament, which boasted a record high 103 participants during the first weekend of February. Winners in the Open category are awarded prizes and get their name written on the coveted trophy, while juniors are treated to medals for their performances.

Ste. Anne Lions Host Coffee House The Ste. Anne Lions Club hosted their first coffee and entertainment evening on Saturday, February 1 at the Club Jovial in Ste. Anne. The evening turned out great as the mood was set with candle lit tables draped in crisp white table cloths turning the venue into a very cozy atmosphere. Guested enjoyed coffee, dainties and entertainment by Gerald St. Laurent and Michael Audette. The evening included a silent auction and honey sales to raise funds for future causes within the community. Lions Club International is the world’s largest service organization with 1.35 million members in 207 different countries. If you are interested in learning more please contact the Ste. Anne Lions at steannelionsclub@gmail.com. Above: Michael Audette (left) and Gerald St. Laurent play to guests at a Ste. Anne Lions Club gathering. Right: One of the fundraisers taken on by the Ste. Anne Lions Club is selling specialty flavoured honeys.

Photos by Patricia McPherson InSeine Newsletter

On January 3, police officers from the Steinbach RCMP and Steinbach GIS, with the assistance of the RCMP Interdiction Team, pulled over a semi-trailer travelling through the Steinbach area headed to eastern Canada. A search of the semi-trailer resulted in police locating approximately 114 pounds of marihuana. Two men were located in the vehicle and were arrested by police. John Millen, 48, of British Columbia and John Shannon, 51, of Alberta were both charged with Possession for the Purposes of Trafficking Marihuana and appeared in court in Winnipeg on January 6.

Piney Council Invites Residents for Coffee Residents in the RM of Piney will have several opportunities to meet with their elected representatives during special ‘Coffee with Council’ meetings. According to council the purpose of the meetings is to give ratepayers within the RM of Piney an opportunity to join council for coffee and voice concerns or ask council any questions they may have. Meetings will take place Wednesday, February 5 at the Woodridge Community Centre in Woodridge and Thursday, February 6 at the Over 40 Club in Piney. All meetings will start at 7 pm and run until 9 pm.


Dawson Trail Dispatch

More Than Just News!

Falk Assigned Committee Responsibilities

February 2014

21

Parents Praise Hanover Robo-Calls By Marianne Curtis Hanover School Division parents are praising the division’s new automated school cancellation policy. Earlier in January the Hanover School Division implemented a new notification system which advises parents via telephone when classes are cancelled. Superintendent Randy Dueck said the phone system was developed to better communicate with families when school was cancelled for snow days, cold days or other type of school cancellations. “On mornings when I cancel school we want to make sure that all parents and students are aware that school is cancelled so students are not sent to school in bad weather conditions,” explained Dueck. Previously, the school division has relied solely on local radio stations to notify parents when classes are cancelled. Within a day of setting up the new system, it was put to the test when Hanover School Division schools were closed due to a -45 wind-chill. “It was really nice to wake up to a call in the morning,” stated Steinbach parent Roxie Kehler. “We don’t have a regular radio in our house,” added Mitchell mom Vanessa Friesen. “With the automated call there is no morning scramble to get onto the Internet to see if the school division has announced that the buses are running.” Dueck stressed that the automated phone call system will only be used when classes are cancelled. “On days when it is a close call and parents have not received a phone call, they should double check the division’s website,” Dueck added. On mornings when it is implemented the Hanover School Division’s new phone system will begin calling parents at 6:45 am.

On his first day in Ottawa, newly elected Provencher MP Ted Falk, along with Shelly Glover, were presented to the Speaker by Prime Minister Harper before being assigned their official seats in the House of Commons.

Apartments Approved for Ste. Anne

Newly elected Provencher MP Ted Falk began the New Year by celebrating his first assignment in Ottawa. After being officially assigned his seat in the House of Commons, Falk was given two committee assignments by the Prime Minister. He was assigned to the committees of Public Accounts and Canadian Heritage. “I’m looking forward to those committees,” stated Falk. “I think they will be exciting.” The Town of Ste. Anne has given the green light to a new two-story 36The Canadian Heritage committee overseas all of the national museums, including the new Human Rights unit apartment development in the community. The new apartment complex Museum in Winnipeg and includes the CBC and CRTC. is expected to be built between the Co-op gas bar and the railway tracks on the west side of town. According to Ste. Anne Mayor Bernie Vermette, town council approved the development with a number of conditions. “We would have liked to see that area remain commercial,” stated Vermette. “I found myself looking at the safety issue but they said they would put up fencing.” Vermette said that council was very concerned about the proximity of the apartment complex to the new Ste. Anne Coop and the railway tracks. “They have to come up with a plan for Council. If all conditions are met then they can start,” he added. The Town of Ste. Anne approved the project with conditions that include the construction of a fence to be installed and maintained on the north, west and south side of property, along with additional fencing if required. In addition, owners have been asked to create a green space, complete with play structures, within the property and shall not be located within the 100-foot CN buffer zone. A separate access to the property is also required to be built away from the existing Ste. Anne Co-op access off Traverse Rd. The project will not proceed until the Town of Ste. Anne approves a conditional agreement to change the zoning since the property is currently zoned as commercial.

MTC Makes Stop in Steinbach

Bethesda Expansion Delayed Until Spring Construction on the Bethesda Regional Health Care Facility emergency room project has been delayed until spring.

“...hurdles along the way have delayed that project.”

On January 27, the Manitoba Theatre Company (MTC) made a stop in Steinbach. Each season MTC takes live theatre to communities throughout Manitoba and northwestern Ontario. MTC has been touring the province for more than 40 years, and the Steinbach Arts Council was thrilled to have them back. Manitoba Theatre Company Actors Stefanie Wiens, Tricia Cooper, Marina Stephenson Kerr, and Cory Wojcik as part of Miracle on South Division Street made Steinbach their first stop on a rural Manitoba Tour where they performed before a high-spirited crowd at the SRSS Theatre. The group did a great job telling the story of the Nowak family in Miracle on South Division Street where a deathbed confession turns everything the Nowaks thought they knew on its head.

Southern Health CEO Kathy McPhail said they had hoped that construction would be complete this month. It has now been delayed until spring. “The regional health authority had hoped the expansion would be complete this month, but hurdles along the way have delayed that project,” stated McPhail. At a price tag of $22 million, expansion of the emergency room will be a significant improvement. The current facility occupies about 2,200 square feet of Bethesda Hospital. The new emergency room will be 14,000 square feet and offer both urgent and non-urgent care. There will also be an isolation area for infectious disease quarantine and a 5-bed special care unit for cardiac patients that are not critical enough to need transfer to Winnipeg but require special attention.


22

More Than Just News!

February 2014

Air Cadets Gather Food Recently, Air Cadet Flight Sergeant Dani Dufresne delivered non-perishable food items collected by the RCAC #307 Stoneybrook Squadron to Ken Dyck with Helping Hands in Steinbach for delivery to individuals in need throughout the local community.

Steinbach to Host 12th Annual Winter Carnival By Marianne Curtis The City of Steinbach is gearing up for the community’s 12th annual winter carnival. This year’s one-day event will take place on February 8 in and around the Centennial arena in Steinbach. Jason Peters, Recreation Programmer for the City of Steinbach, said that this year the City of Steinbach is collaborating with Eastman Immigration Services to bring the event to the community.

“One of the things that make our Canadian heritage so rich is how we thrive during the winter months.”

Call Out for Talent Amateur artists of south east Manitoba are invited to share their talents with singing, dancing, musical theatre, magic tricks to pet tricks and body contortion for cash prizes. First place cash prize is $200, 2nd place $150 and 3 honourable mentions will win $50 each. The open competition takes place with live auditions on Monday, March 3 and Wednesday, March 5 at the Steinbach Arts Cultural Centre (SAC) located at 304 Second St. Judges will select 15 finalists for Steinbach’s Got Talent on Tuesday, April 8 at the Steinbach Regional Secondary School theatre. Audition tryouts are also open to the public and the cost is Adults $5 and students 12 and under is $2. A majority vote will determine the overall winner from a combination of judge’s votes and a people’s choice vote from the audience. Ticket cost for Steinbach’s Got Talent show is $15 for adults and $9 for students. All audition and Talent show tickets will be available from the SAC office. Amateur acts of all ages can enter by downloading an application form from the SAC website and submitting the completed application along with entry fee, a high resolution photo (min. 1 MB) in jpeg format, a short bio (1 paragraph) and a video or music file to Liz at events@steinbachartscouncil.ca by Thursday, February 20 midnight or emailing events@steinbachartscouncil.ca or in person at the SAC office at 304 Second Street, Steinbach. There will also be an after hours drop box for entries in the slot to the right of the Centre’s front doors. Artists can enter into a maximum of two categories broken into Music Groups - bands, vocal ensembles, instrumental ensembles, Music Solos, Duos and Trios – vocalists and instrumentalists such as voice, piano, violin and guitar, Dance and Musical Theatre – solos, duos and groups, Theatre, Illusionists, Improv, Speech Arts, Comedy, Magicians and other ‘non-traditional’ talents.

More Youth Helped by Eastman KidSport In 2013, Eastman KidSport provided over $55,000 in funding to remove financial barriers that prevent kids from playing organized sport. The Eastman KidSport Committee has completed the 2013 KidSport review, in which 296 applications were submitted this past year. For the first time since starting the program, back in 1997 over $50,000 was disbursed this year. Based on eligibility, 293 of the applications were approved and $55,625.84 in funding was disbursed. The Eastman KidSport Committee accepts applications on a monthly basis with the deadlines being the 15th of each month. For a copy of the 2014 application or more information on eligibility, please contact the Eastman office. The Eastman KidSport Committee would like to thank the following business’s that have helped us assist almost 300 children this year, Canadian Tire, Loblaws and Tim Hortons. In addition, a big thank you to our Eastman municipalities,

Dawson Trail Dispatch

community groups, schools and individual donors for their continued support of our program. As the need for funding assistance steadily increases, so does the need for support of this program. If you are interested in making a donation or have an event that you are looking for a charity of choice, please contact the Sport Manitoba – Eastman Region office at 268-2172. Tax receipts are available for your donations. Lastly don’t forget about our upcoming Polar Bear Dare event set for Saturday, February 22 in Lac du Bonnet. Last year’s event raised over $20,000 for Eastman KidSport and we hope to encourage even more people to participate in our ‘freezing for a reason’ fundraiser this year. Prizes will once again be awarded for best costume, most monies raised by a dare, individual and team. To register online, donate or get more information please visit our web page sportmanitoba.ca/ polarbeardare. Also, feel free to

check out some hilarious pictures and videos of last 2 year’s events on our Facebook page, facebook.com/polarbeardare.

Chicken Barn Engulfed in Fire On January 2 just before 3 pm Steinbach RCMP responded to barn on fire four miles south on Kokomo Road and a half a mile east on 31N. RCMP officers arrived on scene with the La Broquerie Fire Department to discover the building fully engulfed in flames. Giroux Fire Department was called for assistance but 5,000 breeding hens perished in the fire. There was no human injury and the fire did not spread to any of the other buildings on the property but the damages are estimated at $500,000. The Office of the Fire Commissioner investigated the cause of the fire and it does not appear suspicious in nature.

“February is the month of the Winter Olympics and we are excited to celebrate the many cultures that we have in the southeast,” said Peters. “One of the things that make our Canadian heritage so rich is how we thrive during the winter months. We want to showcase our traditions, but also recognize the contributions that new Canadians bring to our community. We are excited to bring back the sleigh rides to the Carnival this year as well.” In previous years, weather has made it challenging to boost attendance. This year the City is holding the winter carnival at the Centennial arena instead of various community parks. The carnival’s focus will be on family fun and will feature a variety of indoor and outdoor activities running from 1 - 4 pm. Activities at the carnival will include a Novice Winter Classic hockey game on the outdoor rink, snow painting, sleigh rides, cultural music and dance demonstrations in the Centennial Arena lobby. Public skating on the Centennial ice will be from 3:30 - 6 pm.


More Than Just News!

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Mitchell Students Paint School In October, local artist Annie Bergen spent seven days working with 28 Art students from Mitchell Middle School creating a mural. “Students experienced success at painting and creating something that will be part of our school for a very long time,” said Joanne Wallace from Mitchell Middle School. “We were impressed with the enthusiasm, dedication and hard work. The mural looks amazing and it is now mounted on the side of the school for everyone to enjoy.” Art teacher Venessa Hildebrand, along with some grade nine students, drew out the plan and a mural committee added their ideas. The mural’s theme was ‘Then and Now’. For the ‘Then’ side, the old Mitchell school is featured. The old school was turned into the Ham Dog

Art students from Mitchell Middle School, along with local artist Annie Bergen, spent a week painting this magnificent mural on display outside the school.

House, which was recently moved school with students playing, out of the community. For the ‘Now’ reading and riding the bus. side, there is a picture of the present

La Broquerie Commits to Medical Clinic The RM of La Broquerie is jointly working on a permanent health care facility in La Broquerie with Southern Health and the Seine River Clinic in Ste. Anne. According to council, Southern Health is committed to contributing financially to a new medical facility in the community on a permanent basis. As part of the project, the Seine River Clinic is interested in purchasing a property presently owned by Le Chalet Inc. The provincial government is committed to encouraging primary health care units in rural Manitoba and Southern Health has accepted La Broquerie as a community that can house a primary health care unit in the future, stated council. The RM of La Broquerie has agreed to support the project with a total of $100,000 for a primary health care unit including an initial contribution in 2014 for renovations of $50,000.00. In addition they will provide annual payments of $12,500 from 2015-2018. The municipal commitment is conditional upon the financial commitments of both the Seine River Clinic and Southern Health.

RHA Surplus Grows As Southern Health closes the book on the first eight months of operations, the health authority is looking at close to a $1.5 million surplus. Southern Health’s Regional Director of Finance, Ryan Green, said that at the end of the first eight months of their fiscal year, the health authority is reporting a growing surplus of $1,528,806. In one month from January, the surplus has increased by more than $239,000. “This may seem like a large number but it amounts to less than one percent of our overall budget, so it is modest,” Green explained. Southern Health said the surplus stems from staff vacancies in certain programs, including home care. The health authority has had difficulty filling several vacancies within the program. Historically, a surplus halfway through the fiscal year is an indicator that

Southern Health will close the books on either a balanced budget or surplus at the end of the fiscal year.

February 2014

23


24

More Than Just News!

February 2014

Concert with a Cause Steinbach Arts Council is hosting a Concert with a Cause fundraiser to help bring The Recycled Orchestra from a slum in Paraguay to Steinbach. In partnership with G&E Homes and Global Family Foundation, the benefit concert will take place on Thursday, February 13 at Steinbach Mennonite Church at 7:30 pm with all proceeds going to The Recycled Orchestra and to Steinbach Arts Council. The dream to bring the orchestra to Steinbach was started by the late Garry Dueck when he offered his band to perform in a fundraising event to enable this orchestra to come over to Canada to perform. Because of his support of the Global Family Foundation and the Steinbach Arts Council, these two organizations and their artists have come together for this cause. The event will also feature demonstrations and a display of homemade instruments created by children from local schools including grade four students from La Broquerie Aborgate School and Blumenort School. Some of the best local talent to perform includes the Sweet Water Creek band in tribute to Garry Dueck, Blues Singer John Lepp, Storyteller Clint Toews and Magician Chris Loewen. The Recycled Orchestra is from Cateura in Paraguay, a community of shacks built on a landfill and the slum is considered among the poorest in South America. More than 2,500 families live directly beside the landfill, picking garbage to find sellable or recyclable goods. However, in the middle of the rubble lies hope. Playing instruments made from trash found in the landfill, The Recycled Orchestra is a full-fledged orchestra proving to the world that despite their circumstances, they have something beautiful to offer. All tickets are $15 and can be ordered by phone at 204-346-1077 and paid by credit card. For more information check out the Landfill Harmonic video at globalfamilyfoundation.ca.

Ste. Anne Appoints Police Sergeant On January 1, The Town of Ste. Anne named Doug Davis as Sergeant of the Ste. Anne Police Department. Davis comes to the Ste. Anne Police Department from the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) where he retired from Kenora Detachment with over 30 years of service. During his career with the OPP Doug worked in general law enforcement, criminal and drug Investigation, marine patrol, search and rescue, professional standards as well as Shift Supervisor and Detachment Commander. According to council, the decision was made after the town saw the need to appoint someone to assist the Ste. Anne Police Chief Marc Robichaud. Currently the Ste. Anne Police Department, including the Police Chief, has four full time officers, 2 casual police officers and 20 trained volunteer auxiliary members.

New Year Sees Changes at Anna’s House The New Year has brought some exciting changes to the region’s family resource centre as the facility undergoes changes in both name and location. After holding a naming competition last fall, the Anna’s House Board of Directors chose to rename the facility as the Steinbach Family Resource Centre. Along with the name change, is a relocation to the old Pro-Vista building located at 101 North Front Drive. Executive Director Vicki Olatundun said the new name better reflects the

use of the resources at the centre. “Where we were located we were not very visible,” explained Olatundun. “There was also a safety concern more than anything else.” In their previous Brandt Street location, the centre was adjacent to a large recreational vehicle dealership. “Young children and RV’s don’t mix,” she added. The Steinbach Family Resource Centre remains a family resource centre dedicated to serving expectant mothers and families with children up to the age of five.

Ritchot Denies Duplexes The RM of Ritchot has denied a project that would have seen the construction of four duplexes along Dumaine Road in Ile des Chênes. At a recent conditional use hearing, the municipal council heard a number of objections to the project from area residents. The project would have seen eight bungalows (four duplexes) with attached garages. Before the hearing started, the municipality received four letters of objection and nine more residents spoke against the project at the hearing. The majority of the concerns surrounded traffic and safety concerns. The RM of Ritchot Council voted unanimously to deny the application.

Dawson Trail Dispatch

Decision Needed on AirAmbulance Service Steinbach MLA, Kelvin Goertzen, says a decision or information about air-ambulance service is needed as it has now been more than two months since the Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS) helicopter was grounded. “There is agreement that we need an air ambulance and residents in rural Manitoba particularly benefit from it at critical times,” said Goertzen. “When STARS was suspended in December the NDP Minister of Health indicated that following a review there would be a decision on its service early in January. Every day that goes by without a decision is a day that we are without this service should it be needed,” said Goertzen. The STARS helicopter when it was in service made many flights to southeastern Manitoba to respond to emergencies such as vehicle crashes or other critical incidents. Goertzen says he has been getting questions from local residents about the future of air ambulance service in Manitoba and when the STARS review will be complete. “Days have turned into weeks and weeks into months and we still don’t have an answer about air ambulance service in Manitoba,” said Goertzen. “Everyone seems to agree that an air ambulance service can save lives so we need to get an answer and some direction on the status of STARS and air ambulance service.” STARS began a formal agreement with the province in 2011 to provide air-ambulance service and since then had flown 690 missions and transported 430 patients. It also operates in Saskatchewan and Alberta, where it began in 1985, and has never been suspended in those provinces.

Steinbach RCMP Responds to Single-vehicle Rollover

On February 3 just after 9:30 am Steinbach RCMP responded to a single-vehicle rollover on the Trans-Canada Highway one and a half kilometres west of the Highway 12 junction. Local fire and EMS also attended. The vehicle rolled and came to a stop in the median between the westbound and eastbound lanes of the Trans-Canada Highway. Both occupants of the vehicle were transported to Ste. Anne Hospital. The male passenger, 59, was pronounced deceased. The female driver, 73, has life-threatening injuries. Slippery conditions were considered to be a factor in this collision.

Dawson Trail Dispatch February 2014  

Southeast Manitoba News and features