Passions Magazine - Summer 2020

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ISSUE 12 | SUMMER 2020



Taking it Up a Gear














COVER PHOTO David and Nancy Patterson by Rae-Ann Guenther


13 photo: Pacific Playgrounds Resort & Marina






After a slow start, summer finally arrived, albeit a little differently from years past. For Summer 2020, we have been asked to stay closer to home, to maintain social distancing, and to follow a myriad of protocols to help keep ourselves and our communities safe. Slowly but surely, life begins to reflect what will be a new sense of normal. If you have been stuck anywhere this summer, it might as well be Vancouver Island! While a lot of our summer plans are necessarily on hold, many of us are appreciating that this is a great time to (responsibly) explore the natural and cultural wonders in our own backyards. In this issue of Passions, we fired up the barbeque with some tasty kebabs courtesy of Chef Taylor and shake-it-up with some new summer cocktail recipes. We continue to follow Rob O’Dea as he recounts his adventures, circumnavigating Vancouver Island; and meet Fairwinders and cycling enthusiasts, David and Nancy Patterson. We applaud the work being done by local Farmers’ Markets as they pivot to ensure that a steady supply of locally produced food remains available in our community. We also explore the world of RV travel and a passion for motorcycles. We hope you find inspiration in this issue as we explore activities from summers past… whether it’s a croquet tournament on the front lawn, blowing bubbles with the grandkids, or any of the other fun summer games from the “Our Favourite Things” feature. Summertime is here for a while longer so it’s time to play and take advantage of the sunshine, fresh air and this beautiful place we call home. Let’s enjoy all that Vancouver Island has to offer. We would love to hear your version of “What I Did This Summer.” Be safe, be well, be happy!

Julie Jaworski, PASSIONS Editor


’ n i n n u R r o t o M Get Your WONDERFUL TIME E IS HERE–THE MOST


by Jen Groundwater

or You may find them noisy ers dangerous, and their rid t bu reckless or foolhardy, still for many of us, there is pealing something inherently ap torcycle. about the idea of a mo Peter Fonda,

Over the years, actors like an, Steve McQueen, Dennis Hopper, James De to mention Tom and Marlon Brando (not i Ninja, in Top sak wa Cruise, on the first Ka motorbike a the ke ma to ped Gun) have hel freedom, on, elli cultural shorthand for reb . danger, and sex appeal re introduced The first motorcycles we before Steppenwolf’s more than eight decades Wild,” but we be iconic 1968 hit “Born to , too, longed ors ent inv suspect that their lookin’ for ay, hw hig the on to “head out comes our way.” adventure, and whatever eeled Butler Petrol wh eeMind you, the thr could only achieve Cycle, launched in 1884, mph (16 kph), which a maximum speed of 10 speed limit at the UK was well over the legal s changed in law d roa the time. And, until needed to have 1896, if you drove one, you g a red flag vin wa , a person preceding you r imminent you of ple peo to warn oncoming Rider. But people arrival. It was hardly Easy ptions probably tra who saw one of these con ivalent of “Hot equ ury thought the 19th-cent damn, that thing is RAD!” an avid rider John MacKenzie-Cooper, feeling. He says, t tha ws from Courtenay, kno r rode a motorcycle, “From the first time I eve got to do this.’ ” He I loved it. I thought, ‘I’ve ght his first bike: bou was almost 60 before he r 650. In 2018, Sta V aha a two-wheeled Yam , powerful Can-Am he traded it in for a stylish comfortable, stops , Spyder tricycle. It’s stable self-proclaimed his to d on a dime, and is kin and replaced hip,” “bad back, two bad knees, k.” but it also “goes like stin dy shows riding A recent brain-imaging stu your stress and a motorcycle can reduce MacKenzie-Cooper’s increase your focus, but re poetic: “When mo reasons for riding are l the wind, the fee you e, you’re riding a bik




a.k.a. crotch rockets

Sport Bikes

Harley-Davidsons; choppers


boringly named, but useful

Standard Bikes

adventures ideal for overland/off-road

Dual Sport Bikes

e a better connection to sun, even the rain! You hav ]. You feel alive.” car a nature [than you do in scenic highways, and ters win With our short ly Canada’s best place Vancouver Island is arguab ed roads, highways, to own a motorbike. On pav roads (if you have the vel gra n country roads or eve breeze past crashing right kind of bike), you can trees, through quaint waves, underneath massive beautiful beaches and ide bes little communities, and farmland. you’ve never straddled If this stirs your blood, but nty of people learn Ple . late a motorbike, it’s not too . You can quickly get a to ride in their 50s and 60s ady have a BC driver’s motorcycle license if you alre al riding course is ion license, but taking a profess e investment in your wis a It’s d. highly recommende safety. r a full-face helmet! And for heaven’s sake, wea helmet laws were t ren cur ’s Amazingly, until BC buckets” were optional. introduced in 2012, “brain ride with your hair Although you can no longer e has shifted. tur cul blowing in the wind, the than protecting your ler coo ks loo g hin Nowadays not noggin. be in good company. If you decide to ride, you’ll there are over 71,000 On Vancouver Island alone, while the majority of motorcycles registered, and of female bike owners is riders are men, the number e to several motorbike on the rise. The Island is hom ce to participate in group clubs, which are a great pla isers like the Port excursions and charity fundra years, has turned 35 r ove , Alberni Toy Run which more than 1,500 riders into a huge event that brings together for a good cause. n taking a spin up the There’s not much nicer tha s Comox or Campbell Old Island Highway toward . Or you can head River on a sunny summer day a huge network of lore further down-island to exp ite scenic day-trip our fav A . ays highways and byw ough Jordan River and route goes from Victoria thr Duncan and Cowichan Port Renfrew, then inland to ital. cap the to before looping back all-time favourite er’s oop e-C nzi cKe Although Ma st Highway Coa ific ride so far has been the Pac n makes eve e trik or e in Oregon, having a bik you’re on a hen “W . fun re mo k commuting to wor like nothing dom of free bike,” he smiles, “it’s a sense w.” kno I else. It’s the best therapy


e.g. Honda Goldwings

Touring Bikes

left John MacKenzieCooper on the CanAm Spyder tricycle, a great example of the amped-up descendants of the original Petrol Cycle


Growing with theTimes by Kait Burgan photos by Rae-Anne Guenther

Sparkling light dances on waves in the Salish Sea; bright, fragrant flowers and early morning sun leads to endless pink and orange sunsets; backyard BBQ’s and outdoor dinner parties enjoyed with neighbours, friends and family and foraging at a nearby Farmers’ Market. These are all tell-tale signs of summer on Vancouver Island.

Images Scenes from the Errington and Qualicum Beach Saturday markets. Measures are in place to help keep shoppers safe, and well stocked with fresh local produce.




s we all know, this year is different. Many of us haven’t seen our family or friends in many weeks, and most of our treasured summer activities have been put on hold while we mitigate COVID-19. Farmers’ Markets too, are adapting in these uncertain times. The Qualicum Beach Farmers’ Market runs year-round on Saturday mornings from 8:30 to noon. 2020 is the first year since its start in 1997 that organizers have faced the reality of not being able to continue. “When the pandemic first hit, we weren’t considered an essential service,” says market manager, Launie Elves. This is her first year in the role, and it’s safe to say that the learning curve has been steep. It didn’t help that local media ran a story that included photographs from previous years, depicting vendors and people enjoying the market in pre-COVID times. The images of a past market environment at the peak of a pandemic sparked an outcry from the public who assumed, based on the article, that it was business as usual at the QB Market. It wasn’t. The only thing Launie could do was proactively adapt. She worked closely with the British Columbia Association of Farmers’ Markets (BCAFM), an umbrella organization that supports, develops and promotes farmers’ markets across the province, as well as the BC Centre for Disease Control. After a two-week shutdown in late March and some fairly intense meetings with the Town of Qualicum Beach—the market leases the land from the town—the vendors were back. Shoppers could once again enjoy foraging for locally grown, handmade, non-processed food with social distancing protocols in place and limits on the number of vendors and shoppers. There is no live music or the usual Legion Pancake Breakfast, and there are designated routes, and distance lines marked as in groceries stores. 7 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

Images More scenes from the Errington and Qualicum Beach Saturday markets. COVID-19 protocols do not seem to hamper shoppers' enthusiasm.

“It’s been quite a ride,” says Launie. “I won’t lie and tell you that it’s been easy. It’s been really hard. It’s also been really rewarding to watch everyone come together. As restrictions loosen, we are adding more vendors, ensuring that we maintain capacity limits and social distancing protocols. It’s inspiring to see that the value of locally grown produce, artisan-baked goods and sustainable meat products are recognized as being vital to our health as a community and as individuals.” At the Errington Market, open Saturday mornings from 9 am to 1 pm, things are different from the way it used to be, but like everyone, organizers have adapted. The atmosphere has changed drastically from previous years. In normal times, vendors nestle under the trees, some displaying their goods at permanent wooden booths. There are vendors at the entranceway and in a small clearing, and a concession stand serves fantastic coffee and homemade food. Children run freely through the woods and musicians entertain from a rustic and charming wooden stage. Now, due to COVID-19, music is not allowed because it encourages people to gather, and social distancing under the trees presents a challenge. Nicole Shaw, president of the Errington Market Society, says at the beginning of the outbreak, there was fear, some of which stemmed from watching what was happening in Qualicum Beach. “The farmers’ market is a much shorter supply chain than the grocery stores, which were considered an essential service,” Nicole says. “You’re dealing directly with the farmer, and we’re the only ones that have touched your food.” Nicole and her partner Dirk Becker operate Transfarmation, growing 16,000 pounds of vegetables and fruit by hand on one of 15 acres in Errington. Instead of setting up shop beneath the trees, vendors at Errington Market now set up in a horseshoe shape on the field that used to be for parking. They are two meters apart and cones indicate appropriate spacing for shoppers. Despite the change in ambience, there remains a strong sense of coming together and appreciation for a life connected to the land and the people who harvest and create from it. There’s also a sense of relief that farmers’ markets were finally recognized as an essential part of life. The Errington Market runs until the end of September with a year-end celebration on October 3. In addition to the Qualicum Beach and Errington Farmers’ Markets, the extremely popular Summer by the Sea Street Market in Parksville has also made some adjustments. Not a true farmers’ market in that imported and manufactured goods are available, this year’s event will run on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3 pm to 8 pm with a 20-vendor limit at the Parksville Visitor Centre, 1275 East Island Highway. There is detailed information about vendors, locations, protocols and much more online. To learn more, visit, and 8 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020


Let ’s Play!! BOCCE A summer classic that all ages can play together, bocce is known as boules, bowls, or pétanque depending on where you live. With variations of the game played around the globe, its origin can be traced back to the Roman Empire.

CROQUET Another “serious” summer game that involves hitting wooden or plastic balls with a mallet through hoops (called wickets in the US) embedded in a grass playing area. While there is some debate as to the origin of the game, it became a quintessentially British pastime. Croquet, played casually, is known as Garden or Backyard Croquet, but it is also played competitively with governing associations, league play and even world championships. HORSESHOES The heavy clank of a horseshoe as it rings the metal peg, followed by loud cheering will live forever in childhood memories of summer. Named for the main piece of equipment used, the game involves tossing or pitching a horseshoe at a stake (pin or peg) pounded into the lawn or sand pit some 12 m (40 ft) away from the player who is pitching. Filled with ringers, sliders and leaners, it is generally played with opposing teams of two players each, pitching into two ends where the stakes are set up.

FRISBEES have officially been tossed about

since the term was registered as a trademark by Wham-O Toy Company in 1957, but some version of the flying disc (including hats, lids, and pie tins) have been sailing through the air for as long as we have been throwing things! You can play the game with a friend, a group of friends, or even your dog. And there are variations like Frisbee Tag, Disc Golf and even freestyle competitions. LAWN DARTS No, not those lethal ones (eventually banned in Canada and the US) with metal pointy ends that we tossed around in 60s! Try the new, softer version with weighted blunt ends and some that even glow in the dark.

BUBBLE WANDS Nothing is more delightful for young and old than watching bubbles float through the air on a summer’s day. Just for the name alone you may want to try FLICKIN’ CHICKEN… like bocce but much sillier!

Of course, no summer is complete without stringing up a BADMINTON net in the backyard, at the park, or on the beach. While for most of us, the game involves swinging and missing the birdie or climbing a nearby tree to retrieve it, there is usually a lot of laughing involved as well! Then there are the supersized versions of traditional games like CHESS, DOMINOES, JENGA and even BEER PONG played outdoors and with MUCH larger playing pieces than their indoor cousins. And finally, you are NEVER too old to run through the SPRINKLER! Come on, just once. The neighbours will never know! 9 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020


TAKING IT UP A by Sandra Jones photos by Rae-Anne Guenther

We were in the best shape of our lives and had a real sense of accomplishment. Of course we were also happy to get home and sleep in our own bed again...




On an island with an enviable climate that’s conducive to year-round adventures, it’s not surprising to meet people with a love of outdoor recreation. Ocean, mountains, lakes, and forests are the playground for the fit and fun-loving.


t’s that lure of the idyllic lifestyle that draws many to settle in Fairwinds, including David and Nancy Patterson. Getting close to retirement and wanting to find a home that suited their plans for an active life, the couple requested a work transfer from Winnipeg to Victoria in 2007 to see what the Island was all about. A quick nine months later and the couple was living fulltime in a condo they purchased in Fairwinds. David says one of the big draws with the location was the ability to live around a golf course. “Both Nancy and I play three or four times a week so to have it right down the street was a big plus.” But golfing was just part of the plan for the Pattersons who also love to run, ski, swim and now cycle. “We did a number of marathons and in the last eight or nine years, we moved onto the triathlon and that’s when we started biking,” recalls David. Triathlons ranged from familyfriendly versions at Qualicum Beach to Olympic-style competitions in Victoria. For the couple who likes a challenge, tackling the Ironman in 2015 was up next. “It was a 4-km swim, a 180-km bike ride and a full 42-km marathon,” says Nancy. “We had 17 hours to complete it. Since then we haven’t had the enthusiasm to do another but we really enjoyed the cycling part of it.” So, a couple of years ago when a friend suggested they get together to do an ‘epic’ type of trip, the Pattersons’ thoughts turned to a cycling adventure on a grand scale. “We proposed that the three of us cycle across Canada,” says David, “and our friend agreed!” We spent a year planning our route to figure out how far we would go in a day, what the elevation gain would be and where the nearest campsites were located.” Ultimately the Pattersons and their friend were accompanied by their friend’s husband who drove a truck and trailer along the route which served as the group’s accommodation. At the last minute, another cyclist decided to join in on the mini peloton and the group of five hit the road on June 1, 2018. In total they rode 7,961 km and arrived in Newfoundland 96 days later. “Overall we experienced over 51,000 meters of elevation gain and we were able to ride an average of 97 km a day. Some days were shorter distances, but others, like when we caught a tail wind in the prairies, we were able to do 150 km in one day,” notes David. Despite their detailed planning, the group had to adapt from day to day. “We had to change things on the fly if

facing Inset The couple in Labrador background The cross-country route from coast to coast left David and Nancy Patterson

campsites weren’t open,” says Nancy. And of course, not every day was an easy day. “On Day 16, it was raining and only +5°C as we went through Crow’s Nest Pass. When we stopped for the night, we were cold and miserable and covered in coal dust from a nearby mine.” But their worst day came just east of Thunder Bay when one of the cyclists went over his handle bars and cracked some ribs. “He spent 10 days in the hospital and ended up taking the train back.” Fortunately the challenging days were overwhelmingly compensated for by an abundance of memorable moments and experiences. For David, one of the highlights was the chance to see Canada from a new perspective. “What impressed me was the variation in the landscape across Canada—it’s incredible! When we went around the Gaspé Peninsula it was drop-dead gorgeous. And, when we crossed northern Ontario, we must have counted 15 lakes in just 100 km. When you’re in a car you’re more focused on the road ahead, but when you’re on a bike, you’ve got lots of time to look around and take it all in.” For Nancy it was the people they encountered along the way—fellow cyclists, locals and even small-town media— who made a big impression. “We had stopped in Virden, Manitoba and a local woman started telling us about the history of the town and asking about our trip. When we got on our bikes and headed back to the highway, a car pulled past and stopped ahead of us. It was a reporter from the Virden newspaper. The woman we had spoken to, went to the newspaper office to tell them about our trip and they tracked us down on the highway and took a photo of us in our team shirts! Everywhere we went, people were so nice and friendly.” After over three months on the road, the expedition wrapped up in St. John’s, Newfoundland and the Pattersons flew home to the Island. “At the end we were exhilarated. We were in the best shape of our lives and had a real sense of accomplishment. Of course we were also happy to get home and sleep in our own bed again,” laughs David. Now, two years later, the Pattersons’ ‘pedal to the metal’ lifestyle continues with plenty of time for golfing, cycling and running. “The primary motivation for moving here was to be able to do the activities that we love,” says David. “We also took some great advice from my dad who advised us to retire where everyone was from somewhere else. That’s Fairwinds. It has been so easy to meet people and integrate into the community. This was the right choice for us.”


photo: @livingforestcampground

photo: Craig Little


THIS SUMMER, we are all being asked to find new ways to “travel” while staying close to home, and in that spirit, Daytrips & Overnighters is pivoting once again. So, how do we manage to travel close to home, see the sights, enjoy some fresh air and soak up that summer sun while also staying safe in our bubble? Why, we just take our bubble on the road in a recreational vehicle (RV) of course! As we travel to other communities on Vancouver Island, we must continue to be mindful and practice social distancing and the other COVID-19 protocols we have come to know so well these last few months, but we are fortunate to live in a place that others flock to for their own vacation travel experiences. So, let’s see what RV travel is about, and what Vancouver Island has to offer.





ccording to a recent national survey by Abacus Data, Canadians are taking a fresh look at the idea of an RV vacation. While 81% of us feel that flying on an airplane for a vacation would be somewhat or too risky, 63% believe there is little or no risk in renting an RV, motorhome, or trailer, and 78% believe RVing would allow them to distance from other people safely. An RV can be much like a private travelling motel—or luxury hotel— room… a place to hide away from the rest of the world. And having your own travelling bubble can be a safe and enjoyable option especially given the current global situation. To kick things off, spend some time considering what style of RVing you want to do. Are you an off-road into the wilderness kind of traveller? Or do you like the comforts of home with power and water hookups, and a reliable WiFi signal for your evening Netflix? Do you want to buy your own rig, or dip your toe into the RV experience with a rental first? Your answers will dictate the choices you make in both the type of RV you purchase or rent, and your final Vancouver Island destination. Whether you buy your own RV, or perhaps rent one to give the whole idea a test run, there are many styles and options available. From cute as a bug teardrop trailers that can be pulled by smaller model vehicles, and pop-up trailers that give you a mix between tent camping and RVing, to a 30-ft-plus travel trailer with slide outs, or perhaps a Class A motor coach with a 13 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

that were filled by international tourists in past years. So, while our numbers haven’t changed, we have certainly seen an increase in British Columbians (and mostly Islanders) staying with us.” Some favourite spots to picnic or to set up camp on Vancouver Island include: Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park – one of the most popular of BC campgrounds right in our own backyard! Surfside RV Resort – on Parksville Bay Pacific Playgrounds Resort & Marina

photo: Pacific Playgrounds Resort & Marina

Miracle Beach Provincial Park

king size bed and theatre seating with surround sound… there is something for every adventure and pocketbook. However, based on the RV’s recent surge in popularity, if you see something you like (particularly in the private sale of a used unit) get a move on and buy it before it disappears! Craig Little, owner of Arbutus RV & Marine Sales reports that, “in the 32 years we have been serving the evergrowing Island RVing community, never before have we seen this type of growth in sales. Currently we are seeing a 40+% increase in deliveries to excited new owners and the product mix is as diverse as the buyers.” RV rentals have long been popular in Canada, and travellers from around the globe are a seasonal staple on the highways and byways of Vancouver Island. This year, there is a real opportunity to vacation in our own backyard and to explore and stay in places that we might otherwise avoid during the usual high traffic tourist season. Sarah Littlejohn, Co-Owner & Marketing Director for Living Forest Oceanside Campground and RV Park notes that, “while we did have a few lean months, June has been as busy as last year, with locals taking up the sites 14 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

Kitty Coleman Provincial Park Elk Falls Provincial Campground Tribune Bay Campsite – on Hornby Island Living Forest Oceanside Campground & RV Park Green Point Campground – National Park at Long Beach Bella Pacifica Campground – Mackenzie Beach (Tofino) If you are looking for the road (and campsite) less travelled, check out the Mosaic Forests website for their backroad recreational sites accessed via the significant network of forestry roads on Vancouver Island. Grab yourself a copy of Back Roads Map Book (BRMB), Vancouver Island edition, and you’ll have accurate, up-to-date maps to guide your travels. And if you have always wanted to give the back country a try without investing in the gear and vehicle needed—logging roads are no place for your average car—check out FarOut Wilderness, an outdoor adventure travel company specializing in overland vehicle and equipment rentals with self-drive itineraries like the Pacific Marine Circle Tour (four days) or the ten-day Nature’s Paradise Tour. Canadians, according to the Abacus poll, are also increasingly looking for a unit already parked and waiting for them to arrive, much like a hotel room. Online RV rental platforms, like, are now applying the Airbnb strategy to the RV travel market, connecting travellers with RV owners who are renting out their private units. This removes the need for a towing vehicle and the associated time and expense of moving a unit to the holiday destination of choice. Private campgrounds and resorts like Pacific Playgrounds Resort & Marina are also stepping up to meet that demand, offering trailers in situ, so all you need do

is drive up, unpack your belongings and sit back in your camp chair to enjoy the view. There are so many options out there when it comes to trying out the RV lifestyle. And yes, it is referred to as a lifestyle… and they have the magazines, tradeshows, online groups, associations and YouTube channels to prove it! To start you off, check in with Go RVing Canada… a great resource for some inspiration and doing your initial research. Their website provides a comprehensive series of videos on everything from latest trends in the industry, and campground etiquette, to how to hook up water, power and sewer lines, and where to stop for the night if you are on a road trip. Not only do we have some of the best places to camp here on Vancouver Island, we are also fortunate to have quite a number of businesses dedicated to the sale and service of RVs. It is well worth spending an afternoon—or five—looking through their lots and wandering in and out of different styles of RVs to discover what fits you best and what is most important to how you wish to travel, sleep, cook and relax. Take photos; make notes; ask questions; and really get a feel for what they have to offer. And if you are considering buying an RV privately, a onceover of the unit by an RV service centre will give you some peace of mind. It looks like 2020 (and beyond) is shaping up to be a boom year for RV travel on Vancouver Island and the rest Canada. Happy trails everyone!

SOME RV SALES LOCATIONS ON VANCOUVER ISLAND Arbutus RV & Marine Sales Big Boy’s Toys Ltd Harris Oceanside RV Sales Coast RV Hub City RV Galaxy RV Comox Valley RV Sunwest RV Greg’s RV Place


Access RV Parts & Service Seaside RV


Just Go Vans (camper van rentals) Island RV Rentals Vintage Trailers 4 Rent FarOutWilderness


KEBABS cuz grills just wanna have fun! by Taylor Whitelock photos by Sean Fenzl


KEBABS have such a nice summertime feel. Who doesn’t like hanging out on the deck with a frosty beer or cocktail in hand, while the barbecue gives off the amazing aroma of roasting meat? There’s nothing pretentious about kebabs—they’re literally just meat and vegetables on a stick. They’ve been around since people were cooking food! Although medieval soldiers used to roast meat on their swords, today’s individual wooden skewers are a lot easier to use, and you don’t have to clean them off after, to prepare for your next battle. Just be sure to soak the skewers in cold water for at least an hour before using them. These tasty bites are the perfect physical-distancing fare since everyone gets their own portion. Also, at this time of year, when your COVID-19 victory garden may be pumping out vegetables like crazy, kebabs are a great way to use up some of that delicious excess produce. Here are two of my go-to kebab recipes that can easily be adjusted to serve two or 12. They’re simple, easy to prep in advance, and cook in almost no time. It looks like there’s a lot going on here, and a long list of ingredients, but the results are worth it.

Beautiful Beef Kebabs Feel free to use whatever’s popping in the garden or at the market that day. These skewers taste great with homemade tzatziki. Kebabs 1 lb sirloin steak, 1" dice ½ lb mushrooms 1 red onion, 1" cubes 1 yellow pepper, 1" cubes 1 green zucchini, ½" slices 1 orange pepper, 1" cubes 1 lb baby potatoes, parboiled 1 tbsp dried oregano 2 tbsp olive oil

Marinade ¼ cup olive oil 3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 3 tbsp soy sauce 1 tbsp Dijon mustard 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 tbsp brown sugar 2 lemons, juiced 1 tsp tamari 1 tsp fresh or dried rosemary 1 tsp black pepper

Combine all marinade ingredients and add beef. Put into a zip-top bag and refrigerate at least 4 hours, but no more than 8 hours. Soak wooden skewers in fresh, cold fresh water for at least an hour. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Toss vegetables in rosemary and olive oil. Thread beef and veggies, looking for a meat-toveggie ratio of 1:3. Grill for approximately 10 minutes, turning once. You don’t want the meat to be fully cooked, just seared—you’re shooting for medium at the most. Sirloin starts a bit tougher, but the marinade has helped break it down. Serve with rice, garden salad, and warm pita bread.


previous page Lest anyone doubts the authenticity of Passions magazine, for this photo shoot, Chef Taylor sports a bandaged forearm due to a burn acquired on the job, a hazard of the profession. However, it should be noted that no chefs were harmed during the production of this edition of THE PASSIONATE FOODIE!

Kofta-Style Lamb Kebabs These kebabs are meat-only, so I recommend using some garden-fresh veggies like tomatoes and cucumbers—maybe from your own garden—on the side. Just toss the veggies lightly with olive oil, balsamic vinegar or a squeeze of lemon, salt, pepper, and parsley to add brightness to the dish. 1 lb ground lamb 4 garlic cloves 1" fresh peeled ginger 3 shallots or 1 red onion, peeled 1 tbsp coriander 1 tbsp cumin 1 tsp saffron threads 1 tsp sumac (or substitute with lemon zest) 1 tbsp paprika 1 tbsp salt 1 tsp cayenne (optional) 1 tsp dried oregano 1 tsp black pepper, ground 2 tbsp mint ¼ cup parsley 1 tsp cinnamon If using wood skewers, soak for at least an hour. Combine all ingredients, minus the lamb, in a food processor. Pulse until ginger is finely minced—this will help bruise the fresh herbs and release their oils. Preheat grill to medium-high heat, around 450°F. Thoroughly combine mixture with lamb. We’re basically going to make meatballs that we aren’t afraid to overwork. Once the ingredients are combined, form into eight, 2-oz balls. Thread two onto each skewer and shape each ball into an egg form. Grill kebabs around 10 minutes, turning once. Serve immediately with homemade tzatziki, brown rice, garden salad, and warm pita bread. Easy Tzatziki Sauce 1 cup Greek yogurt 1/2 cucumber, grated 2 tbsp olive oil 1 lemon, juiced and zested 1 tbsp fresh dill, chopped fine 1 tbsp fresh parsley 2 cloves garlic (I use a zester) 1 tbsp salt ¼ cup water Lots of people will grate, then drain, the cucumber. I disagree. It might not be super-authentic, but I grate my cucumber directly into the bowl with the yogurt. It adds extra flavour and helps thin out the finished dish. Then add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until well combined, cover, and refrigerate for at least an hour (more is better). I like the sharpness of the garlic, but if you’re not a fan, try zapping it in the microwave with two tbsp canola oil for 20 seconds. Strain and add to the tzatziki just before serving. Reserve the garlic oil for another use.


photos On location at a beautiful cabin with a fully equipped outdoor kitchen overlooking Horne Lake... a socially distanced, summertime treat for the Passions crew!


SEPTEMBER 1—30 2020

Sign up for this year’s tournament

and help support the Nanaimo District Hospital Foundation campaign to raise $5 million to purchase state-of-the-art medical equipment for a new ICU. The need is critical.

Fairwinds Golf Club will match donations up to $10,000!




To register, visit or call 250.468.7666

1 round of golf at Fairwinds Golf cart One mulligan per golfer One bucket of balls for warmup at the driving range



Sleeve of golf balls Discounts from Fairwinds Eligibility to win skill and draw prizes Charitable tax receipt for $50




Learn more about the new ICU at For sponsorship and prize donation inquiries, contact Rebecca Taylor at or call 250-739-5764. 19 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

background image Shipwreck sculpture at Louie Bay opposite A fine perch after rounding Brooks Peninsula

Circumnavigating VI in a Couple of Old Sailboats...


—Previous instalments in Passions Winter 2020 & Spring 2020 (—

by Rob O’Dea



e motored out

of an overcast and rainy Winter Harbour, with a forecast that called for worsening conditions through the day. Our plan was to go the 20 nautical miles to Klashkish or Klaskino, where we would spend a few days waiting for better weather conditions before tackling the big passage around Brooks Peninsula. Within the first hour of the day we were bucking directly into a 15-knot wind, four to six-foot waves, and driving rain with less than a mile of visibility.

With the addition of the tide against us, it took three hours of motor sailing just to reach the halfway point. Not impossible conditions, but it is worth noting that this particular day was my crewmate and partner Sharon’s first day ever of sailing in an ocean swell, and Donald, over on Odin with skipper Arnt, was new to sailing and swell… his previous boating experience was limited to canoeing on lakes and rivers. So there would be no sailing heroics until our crew felt comfortable being on the Pacific side of Vancouver Island. After a brief call between the three boats, it was wisely decided to cut the day short and we spent the night tucked in behind a small island on the south shore of Quatsino Sound. We lit the furnace and enjoyed a great meal followed by live music, before bedding down for a restful night. There’s a special kind of anticipatory joy when a sailor wakes on the morning of a major passage to find all conditions in their favour, and on this morning, we awoke to clear skies and a 15-knot NW wind, perfect for the 32-mile trip around Brooks Peninsula. Brooks is an 18-km-long spine of 2,000-foot-tall mountains that juts out into the Pacific, forcing the wind, waves, and currents to build at its notorious western point, Cape Cook (a.k.a. the “Cape of Storms”). Many years earlier, on a pinky schooner that he had built with his father Lloyd, Arnt was stuck just north of Brooks Peninsula for days, waiting for passable conditions at Cape Cook. Timing for our passage around Brooks was critical for the safe continuation of our circumnavigation and today looked to be perfect, but we agreed to finalize our decision once we were out sailing and could confirm the conditions for ourselves. Twenty minutes after our departure, we were flying along on a perfect beam reach, our fastest point of sail. We rounded Lawn Point, and Brooks Peninsula loomed before us with Cape Cook visible 16 miles in the distance. After checking the latest weather forecast and a brief chat on the VHF radio, the skippers agreed to get while the gettin’s good, and we pointed our sailboats toward Cape Cook. In just two hours we were passing between Cape Cook and Solander Island, a quarter-mile-long, 300-foot-tall lump of near-barren rock that is a designated ecological reserve and bird sanctuary. We could smell and hear Solander before we passed by due to the thousands of birds and a colony of massive stellar sea lions hauled out in the sun. A puffin flew by and between the familiar bird and the big, confused seas, for a moment I felt like I was home on the water in my birthplace of Newfoundland. Sharon and I were feeling quite at home on Ern. Even though the NW wind at Cape Cook had built to 20-25 knots and the waves were now regularly four meters, our trusty wooden sailboat was running like a thoroughbred, surfing down big waves with a surge of excitement, charging ahead at up to 8.7 knots and never going below 7 knots, but always in balance and control. All was running so smoothly and comfortably that Sharon was happy to take the tiller and sail the three hours to our next anchorage on the SE shore of Brooks Peninsula. Once Ern was settled in the new anchorage, I set to work squeezing limes and chipping ice to make margaritas, the first round of which I delivered to Sharon who had moved from the tiller to the hammock which was now swinging on Ern’s foredeck in the hot sun. When the other two boats arrived, we all celebrated the excellent passage around Brooks, best 21 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

Nahwitti Bar & Crew change in Port Hardy

Cape Scott Lunch in Guise Bay Hello, my name is Charlie

Port McNeill for a new mast

Root Ball Collision

Green Point Rapids

Winter Harbour crew change and reunion

Tucked in behind an island

Odin is dismasted

Columbia Cove

Cape Cook a.k.a. the “Cape of Storms�

Bunsby Islands Kyuquot

Whirlpool Rapids

Yuculta and Dent Rapids

Awaiting supplies and a new crew at Mary Basin

Predator tracks at Rugged Point Marine Provincial Park

Powell River Prawn Festival Retreat from the gale

Sea sickness strikes

Abandoned steel hulks at Louie Bay

Engine troubles


Watch Beauty and the Feast: When Herring Come to Spawn, to learn more about the Pacific herring. Videography by Grant Callegari, Produced and edited by Meigan Henry, Field production by Josh Silberg, Additional footage by Tristan Blaine and VideoBlocks.

top School of herring at Bunsby Island above Human and wolf print at Rugged Point right Ling cod for dinner Desperate hiking for surf spots


conditions we could have asked for and Stop in a most memorable passage. In just two days, we had covered half the total distance to be travelled before the next planned crew change in another 12 days’ time. It was time to slow down and spend a few days vacationing. Our anchorage was well protected from wind, waves and swell, and only a short hike away from a beautiful sandy beach. Arnt and Sharon’s surfboards had been strapped to Ern’s side deck for the previous three weeks and it was time to find some surf and use them! Even Donald and Charlie gave it a go… with mixed results. On the other hand, I like to be on top of the water, not in it, and

well as a substrate for herring to lay their eggs. We certainly saw evidence of this success during our stay at the Bunsbys and we witnessed huge rafts of sea otters, plentiful kelp forests, and massive schools of juvenile herring tightly packed together just under the surface. The bliss that we had been experiencing since Winter Harbour continued as we leisurely made our way down Vancouver Island, each day in the sunshine, with the wind and waves in our favour. We stopped in Kyuquot to replenish our ice and over the next few days, enjoyed stops in Clanninick Bay, where we swam and fly fished in the Clanninick River, before

Nootka was another stunner. Along the way we saw dozens of waterfalls, spectacular wave spouts that shot 40 feet into the air, and hundreds of sea caves. The fishing was excellent and we augmented our provisions with salmon, ling cod, rockfish, and clams, as well as enjoyed a few varieties of seaweed, sea asparagus, huckleberries… it was a never ending buffet! At Louie Bay we took time to explore the hulking remains of a large steel boat we heard had been brought there about 50 years ago for a shipbreaking enterprise. It had been dragged into shallow water and cut into huge sections before the bottom fell out

The bliss that we had been experiencing since Winter Harbour continued as we leisurely made our way down Vancouver Island, each day in the sunshine, with the wind and waves in our favour. especially not if I must first squeeze into a sausage casing of neoprene to protect myself from the cold Pacific water. After three days we were ready to make the short seven-mile sail to our next anchorage, Big Bunsby Marine Provincial Park. But first we had to say goodbye to skipper Charlie, who had plans to meet up with friends 100 miles down the coast. With a blow from our air horns we watched him depart just as the morning mist turned to daytime rain. The forecast for the next day was better and we were not on a schedule, so we stayed another day. The Bunsby group is a small archipelago, rich in marine wildlife, partially due to the influence of sea otters, a keystone species. By the early 1900’s, sea otters had been wiped out in BC, but in 1969, 89 animals were brought to the area from the two remaining North American colonies in Alaska and California. Today their progeny number in the many thousands from North Coast Trail to Barclay Sound. Sea otters are voracious eaters of sea urchin, who are voracious eaters of the kelp holdfast (the root of sorts). The reintroduction of sea otters has reduced sea urchins which has helped the kelp forests grow and survive. This in turn has provided habitat for salmon and herring as

moving the short distance to Rugged Point Marine Provincial Park, another planned stop for the surfers. The anchorage at Rugged Point wasn’t totally protected from the NW swells and our nights were bumpy, but it was worth the semi-restless sleeps in order to spend time exploring the area. After cleaning the ling cod that Arnt had caught that afternoon—fish tacos for dinner!—we rowed to shore and took the short trail across the peninsula through a towering old growth forest. The dense, damp, coolness of the rainforest opened onto a mile-long white sand beach and like every beach and anchorage so far, we had it to ourselves, or sort of to ourselves. There were large predator tracks everywhere! We were walking low on the beach, where the tide had been just hours before, and within three arm’s reach of where we were standing, we saw the fresh prints of black bear, cougar, and wolves which gave us pause to think that at least one of those animals was possibly just inside the treeline, looking at us strolling along their beach. By now we were two days away from a crew change. So, with sunshine and following winds, we raised anchor for the 22-mile trip to Louie Bay on Nootka Island. We were still enjoying the very best sailing conditions we could ask for and the trip down to

of the scrap iron market. Today it is a twisted, rusting sculpture. After a few hours exploring on foot we headed back to the boats. The wind and waves had shifted and by the time we got back, Ern and Odin were bucking against their anchor chains. We would have to find a better anchorage if we wanted to avoid a long, sleepless night. We made our way six miles up Nuchatlitz Inlet to Mary Basin where we found flat, calm waters and enough landing space for the float plane which was coming with a new crew and supplies in two days’ time. Until then the forecast called for overcast conditions and lots of rain, but there would be a few dry enough periods for a good hike, rowing in the tenders, and reading curled up in the cockpit under the bimini cover. That evening we enjoyed spectacular bouillabaisse made with salmon, ling cod and clams and more than a few songs on the two guitars. It was another very peaceful night’s sleep. In the previous two weeks we had travelled just over 100 kms as the crow flies from Winter Harbour to Mary Basin. It proved to be our most leisurely portion of the trip and the entire experience had been fantastic. The next morning was our scheduled crew change and I’ll pick up there with my final instalment. 23 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020


We Survived June-uary in the Garden! by Sandy Robson

Well June-uary was rather nasty for the garden this year. It hit only 9˚C overnight in mid-June for goodness sake—and I swear my tomato and cucumbers plants were giving me the evil eye—the sun returned for most of July and in August, the temperatures have remained high. So, it has been a busy season with a long (and hopefully pleasant) To Do List for we keepers of gardens. There is the ongoing tidying up by deadheading blooms, mulching, and judiciously pruning and staking shrubs, annuals and perennials as they continue to grow. It’s also time to give a little nutrient boost to the vegetables, berries, herbs and other plants that are working so hard to produce. 24 PASSIONS | SUMMER 2020

In late spring, I always start a big batch of comfrey tea and let it percolate (“get stinky”) before watering it down and applying throughout the summer months… although I do stop fertilizing perennials by mid-August. You can also choose from a wide variety of commercial fertilizers that are tailored to the specific needs of plants from fruit and vegetables, to roses and evergreen shrubs. Next up is the dreaded Pest Patrol! In that department I try to go as low impact as possible, and prefer trying out non-toxic, organic sprays and powders for my arch enemies in the garden. Yes aphids, I am looking at you! This year I am having success with a mixture of castile soap, baking soda, olive & peppermint oils added to warm water for spraying on my roses, honeysuckle, and even a Japanese maple that has been invaded. And I am experimenting with a 50/50 mixture of baking soda and icing sugar sprinkled around the base (not touching the stem

though) of my artichokes to combat the ants that were “farming” a lovely crop of the afore mentioned aphids amongst the leaves…. and so far, so good! For those of you who jumped on the 2020 Victory Garden trend, harvesting fruits and veggies will be an ongoing task throughout the summer months and into fall. Cool weather crops like spinach and peas— and at least they were happy with the cooler spring weather—will be harvested early in the summer, while warmer weather crops (tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers, beans and squash) are looking for as many sunny & warm days as they can find before they set fruit and settle into ripening! With rapid growth during summer, keeping up with the picking will help keep the plant healthy and productive for as long as possible. August is also time to put in fall crops: beets, carrots, turnips, cauliflower (start indoors and transplant in beginning of September), as well as a final seeding of arugula, lettuce, spinach and other leafy greens for your late fall salads!

APHID SPRAY RECIPE To 4 cups of warm water in a spray bottle add: 1 Tbsp olive oil 1 Tbsp castile soup (I use Dr. Bronner’s) 1 tsp baking soda 10 drops of peppermint oil (although if your cats like to loll about in the garden, use rosemary oil instead) Note: ALWAYS do a test spray on a few leaves of any plant and wait 24 hours to ensure there are no ill effects!

Don’t forget to keep up-to-date with changes to local watering restrictions as the weather gets hot and dry. The RDN has a handy interactive map you can see at: Happy gardening!

opposite summer harvests and shared community garden above comfrey tea inset top aphids left raised vegetable beds


The Best Summer Cocktails You Never Knew by Kim Krieger

Summer is here and so is happy hour on the patio! This year, cocktail season might look a little different, but that’s no reason to stick with the status quo. Shake (or stir) up your drink menu this season with these lip-smacking libations you’ll love.

New York Sour

You wouldn’t think red wine and bourbon would be such a good match, but you’d be wrong. This surprising showstopper is refreshing and delicious. For a twist, try replacing the bourbon with gin for an equally tasty treat. Ingredients 2 oz rye or bourbon whiskey 1 oz fresh lemon juice 1 oz simple syrup ½ oz fruity red wine (malbec or shiraz) Method 1. Fill a rocks glass with ice and set aside to chill 2. Combine all ingredients except wine in a cocktail shaker; fill with ice 3. Cover shaker and shake until outside of of shaker is frosty (about 30 seconds) 4. Replace rocks glass with new ice and strain shaker into it 5. Gently pour the wine into the cocktail, over the back of a spoon, so that it floats


The Adonis

Try ordering this simple yet sophisticated drink at a bar and you could very well get a blank stare from the bartender, despite the fact that it’s a classic from the esteemed Savoy cocktail recipe book. Or, if you’re anything like me, saying “I’ll have an Adonis” will make you blush. Thankfully, you can avoid embarrassment by stirring up this titillating tipple at home. Ingredients 1 ½ oz fino or manzanilla sherry 1 ½ oz sweet vermouth 2 dashes orange bitters Method 1. Fill a cocktail glass with ice and set aside to chill 2. Stir ingredients and ice together in a mixing glass or cocktail shaker 3. Discard ice from cocktail glass and pour mixture in, through strainer

Elderflower Gimlet

Cucumber and elderflower? Yes, absolutely! Just a hint of herbaceous cucumber freshens up a cocktail that would be cloyingly sweet without it. Sip this truly lovely variation of a classic gimlet cocktail at the end of a long, hot summer day. It’s the perfect way to welcome a warm evening. Ingredients 1 ½ oz gin ¾ oz lime juice ½ oz St. Germain elderflower liquer ½ oz simple syrup ½ round of cucumber, diced Method 1. Fill a cocktail glass with ice and set aside to chill 2. Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker, add ice, shake for 20 seconds 3. Discard ice from cocktail glass and pour mixture in, through strainer


GRAND PRIX D'ART All summer until Aug 28 in the streets of Qualicum Beach Fridays 9 am - 3 pm PARKSVILLE SUMMER BY THE SEA STREET MARKET Every Tuesday & Thursday until Sept 1 3 - 8 pm at Parksville Visitor Centre, 1275 E. Island Highway


Jeff Dinn Assistant Manager of Golf

Drive for Dough You may have heard the expression “Drive for show, putt for dough.” This phrase has some merit, but it has been largely proven that lower scores are achieved by hitting great tee shots! A good drive can make a par 4 or par 5 a lot easier, whereas errant tee shots are a major source of penalty strokes. Here are a few tips that may help with longer straighter tee balls.

ERRINGTON FARMERS MARKET Saturdays until the end of September, 10 am - 1 pm Next to the Errington War Memorial Hall QUALICUM BEACH FARMERS MARKET Saturdays year-round at 644 Veterans Way 8:30 am - 12 pm MUSIC IN THE COURTYARD AT PARKSVILLE MUSEUM Every Sunday to August 31, 1 - 3 pm 1245 E Island Highway GOLF FOR LIFE Fundraising Tournament for the Nanaimo District Hospital Foundation, hosted by Fairwinds Golf Club September 1 - 30 at Fairwinds Golf Club To register, visit or call 250.468.7666

1 Place the ball forward in your stance. The golf ball should be lined up with the heel of your lead foot.

2 Tee the ball up nice and high. This allows a high launch and often fewer miss-hits.

3 Drop your trail shoulder slightly at address with your weight evenly balanced on each foot.

These three tips all have the same outcome objective and that is to hit up on the golf ball. Hitting up increase height while decreasing spin. This means more distance with the very same club head speed. Try these tips next time you are out playing and let me know how it goes. Fairwinds Golf Course has re-opened with measures in place to keep all of us safe and the course running smoothly. Book tee times online at or by calling the golf shop at 250.468.7666 EXT 1.




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