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Vol. 2, No. 17

AWARD WINNING JOURNALISM FROM GRAND BEND

March 12 to April 15, 2009

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GRAND BEND’S POKER KING Richard Webb knows when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em. Now, the Canadian Poker Tour champ is ready to take on the world.

PLUS: PAINT ONTARIO, TIM & CATHY HOFFMAN GET MARRIED, AND SOUTH HURON ART STUDENTS PREPARE FIGURE SKATING BACKDROP COVER PHOTO ILLUSTRATION BY CASEY LESSARD

ADVICE FROM MOM P.11 - KEEPING THE PEACE P.11 - LIVING IN BALANCE P.13 - EYE FOR DESIGN P.13 - JAMES EDDINGTON P. 16

Go beyond the snapshot Learn how with Casey Lessard’s photography classes. The spring session starts March 19 with classes for new and experienced camera users.

To register, call 519-614-3614 or visit www.GrandBendPhoto.com/contact


2 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

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Long live the king! Grand Bend gambler Richard Webb will travel globe after winning the Canadian Poker Tour crown Richard Webb hit it big January 21 when he won the Canadian Poker Tour Invitational Finals at Ocean World Resort and Casino in the Dominican Republic. Webb was the best of Canada’s top 43 players, who were invited to the Caribbean resort to compete for the $60,000 title and a sponsorship contract worth $100,000. With the win, Webb will represent Canadian Poker Tour as the Canadian poker champion, and the company will pay his entry fee and all expenses when he competes in tournaments across Canada and around the world this year. He also gets to keep most of his winnings from any tournaments where he places “in the money”. It’s a high level of success for this 48-year old Dashwood native, who grew up playing cards and still plays poker weekly with his friends and family.

Photos and photo illustration by Casey Lessard As told to Casey Lessard When did I start playing poker? Probably with my dad when I was a young child. He would deal hand after hand of seven-card stud, and practice and play. He was a card player, and I learned my card skills from him. As we were growing up, we played cards all the time: euchre, solo, hearts – all the card games you play as a family. Along came the charity casino days, and I played poker at those not knowing much of what I was doing. It was mainly limit poker, so there’s a fixed small blind and large blind, and there are only three or four raises. Each game would be $5 to $20 per game. We started playing out at a local establishment in Exeter on Monday and Tuesday nights, and we moved out here for a regular Tuesday night poker game (his basement has a poker room complete with a beautiful poker table, comfortable chairs, and a painting of dogs playing poker). We had been playing various types of games, but we could see that no-limit hold ‘em was where the future of poker was. In no-limit, you can raise any time. This was in the fall of 2004 after Chris Moneymaker won the World Series of Poker, which really was the start of the explosion of the poker trend. In February 2005, I entered my first tournament, the Bluewater Championships at Point Edward charity casino, which was their first. There were about 400 people putting up $500 each. Lo and behold, I finished second. That was a good start. I took a good portion of the winnings and took a month long motorhome trip across Canada with my family. I played the Bluewater Championships again in February 2006, and won it that time. They had another one in September, and I won that, too. I think first prize was something like $50,000 each, so that set me off. I made headlines in poker magazines, and the international poker rankings mentioned it because it’s unusual to win back-to-back.

Grand Bend resident and Dashwood native Richard Webb won cash, sponsorship, and a ring at the Canadian Poker Tour Invitational Finals in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic in January. You can see him play on The Score in April. Check thescore.com for air times.

In 2007, I made the money again at Bluewater, finishing 12th. Then I went to Regina, where I won a tournament. It’s not the biggest tournament in Canada, but it’s one of the best. In 2008, I came back and won the Bluewater for the third time. That gave me entry into the Canadian championships, which were put on by the Canadian Poker Tour. They decided to have a tournament for the top point getters throughout the year. In any given year, I’ve never been the top points person, but I’ve always come close. Historically, since I started, I am number one overall.

Canadian championships It was a very good field of experienced players, all of who had won tournaments or come close, and we played in Puerto

Plata. It was well put together with a big reception party. I went through day one, not as the top chip player but as one of the top 12 moving into day two. By the time we got to nine players, I started to take the lead. When we made the final table, I was the chip leader. Not by a lot, but I was chip leader. I played well. I made two bad calls throughout that time where I actually got in the hand when I was behind. In one case I lost the hand, and the other I drew out on a guy from Toronto. He had an ace/nine versus my king/jack. You get two cards and you’re trying to make a five-card hand. Three cards are flipped – the “flop”. The “turn” brings another card, and then there’s the “river”. I got a jack on the flop to make a pair and that eliminated him. That was good luck. You want to get in when you’re the favourite. His hand was 55 per cent favoured to my 45 per cent because he had the ace. He had one card that was over my two, but my two were over his bottom card. He had to hit an ace to win. It worked out for me. I proceeded to knock out the rest of the field. I got down to playing heads-up with a guy named Robert Beveridge, who won two Grey Cups as a CFL player and now coaches football at the University of British Columbia. I trapped him on a hand. I had pocket queens and he had ace/seven. I was 75-80 per cent favoured to win the hand and luckily he got an ace in the flop. The very next hand I picked up pocket sevens and moved all in against his ace/queen. A seven on the flop gave me three of a kind and I won the tournament. With the $60,000 prize, I get a $100,000 contract to go around the world and play poker. I give them 20 per cent of what I win and I give 10 per cent to charity in the city where I win. If it’s an international win, I’ll donate it in Grand Bend, Dashwood or Calgary, where the Canadian Poker Tour is based. I’ve worked my schedule so I can still run my business (Stewart Webb & Sons septic systems, which he runs with his brother), and have already started touring. I went to Los Angeles for the LA Poker Classic, which is one of the premier events. The winner takes $1.7 million, and I played well, but didn’t make it into the top 63 to get into the money. I jumped on a plane a couple days later to Calgary and finished 38th, which was in the money, and came home. I’m going to Regina this month; to Sanremo, Italy in April, to play in the European Poker Tour event there; Calgary for the Canadian Open; Las Vegas for the World Series; Barcelona, Spain; hopefully the North American championships in Niagara; and a whole bunch of tournaments across Canada to represent the tour coast-to-coast. For the World Series of Poker, there will be 7,000 players putting up $10,000 each, so first prize is about $9 million. Last year there were two Canadians at the final table.

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Keeping everything in perspective Cards are a hobby for me. You see the glamour and glitz on TV, but there’s so much more that goes into it that it isn’t something I would want to have to depend on for rent payments at the end of the month. It would certainly subsidize my income if I decided to retire, but the pressure wouldn’t be there to perform. I’ve been fortunate. But if I never won another tournament again, I’d be quite satisfied with what I’ve achieved. That said, the Canadian Poker Tour wants me to win. Next year they’re planning to do the same thing but offer contracts to all of the players that make the final table. If I walk into a poker room anywhere in Canada, they know who I am because of the previous years. I play as hard as I can, but it’s always about the W for me. I don’t look at the money – I look for the win. That might help me be more relaxed at the end, and I think that’s one of my strengths. Plus I have a lot of final table experience. I wear sunglasses and a hat, and I’m listening to music a lot of the time. I try to establish how good someone’s hand is, and if I’m right 60 per cent of the time, I’m doing well. The more hands you see, the better. In nolimit poker, there’s raising (the stakes) and folding (your hand); no calling. Calling will just get you into trouble unless you’re trying to trap somebody. A good fold is as good as a good call. Maybe better. You’ve got to be able to fold when you’re beat. If you don’t, you’re going to be out of the tournament in a hurry. It doesn’t matter if it’s for $10 or $10,000; it’s still about winning. I still like to play. Cards are a social sport. At tournaments, you’re sitting at tables for 10-12 hours, so I want to be able to talk to the person next to me. If you’re likable, maybe people don’t try to knock you out as hard. I always shake hands and say goodbye to everyone. I’m definitely living the dream. It’s always nice to take Jackie and Sarah with me to places where it’s nice and warm, or places they want to see. Jackie will be going with me to Italy, and hopefully Jackie and Sarah will go with me to Barcelona. When I’m there playing, I don’t do anything other than play, but if I take an extra week, we can enjoy the places together. The money I’ve won has been used for things for my family and extended family, so it goes to good use and isn’t wasted. We still play every Tuesday night with the boys, and they beat me all the time. I play with my father every Tuesday and he beats me quite regularly. I like the ability to play with my dad. I’ve taken him to some tournaments; he sees the success I’ve had, and he’s proud of that. If I win $50,000 Sunday night, I still go to work Monday morning. If I were given a long-term contract to represent an organization, I probably would take it. I like the ability to get out there and meet people. If they want me to do charity events, I’m happy to do it. If I have interviews to do, I’m happy to do that. If I win one of the big tournaments this year, it’s not going to change the way I am and I’ll probably still come to work the next day. Well, maybe I’d take a couple days off before coming back. To see Richard Webb win the Canadian Poker Tour Invitational Finals, you can watch The Score in April. Air dates and times are not yet set, but will be listed at thescore.com Right: Richard Webb as the King of Diamonds

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A cool way to start married life Tim Hoffman of Dashwood and Cathy Costello of Mitchell met through a mutual friend two years ago, and started dating. They got married February 14 on a three-layer cake made of snow as part of the Grand Bend Winter Carnival.

Interview & photos by Casey Lessard Take me back to when you first met. Tim: It was a blind date, so I had no idea what she would look like. You never know what to expect, but it was good. We had good conversation that night and everything went well, and when I left, she told me to come and give her a hug. Cathy: He was a gentleman. Very nice. He seemed really down to earth. He deserved a hug. The first date is one thing, but what was the impetus to say this is going to work? C: I brought him to a party with the girls I work with, and the Mitchell girls are pretty wild. He fit right in with them. It was very important that he could put up with their craziness. T: They all seemed to enjoy a good time

D

and were fun to be around. Then Cathy came Cathy, you had a family already. How did up and gradually met my family more and that play into things? C: It was hard. I didn’t trust many people. more and fit in really well. I could see with Tim that he was a genuinely Family is really important to both of you. nice guy and treated her and me with respect. T: I just tried to be a good role model for What was it like to think about merging the Olivia and build a family with them. two? C: We just felt it was the next step to take. I How did you propose? was ready to move out of Mitchell, out of the T: We were going on a camping trip to small town – and into another small town. We were driving a lot; he came up pretty much Tobermory last August, and I knew prior to every night to Mitchell. We just thought it the trip that I would do it. There’s a high cliff would make more sense to be in the same on the Bruce Trail, and it’s the most beautiful spot that I’ve ever seen. There’s nothing manhousehold. T: As time goes on, you can see you will be made as far as you can see. Years ago, before I compatible together and it makes sense to had met Cathy, I said that would be the spot if I ever had to propose. take the next step. We had quite a challenging time to get to What were you looking for? What was spe- that point. It was a holiday weekend, so you had to take a narrow provincial park road and cial about Cathy? T: Someone who takes interest in what I I was towing a big trailer. It was pretty much do, and we can have a good time together and impossible for two cars to go side-by-side. Someone pretty much ran me off the road laugh together. and I ended up getting stuck in the gravel What was special about Tim? C: He had to be compatible with my going partway up the hill. We thought we daughter Olivia. Whenever they met, they were going to be there for the day. Finally, a bunch of good old Canadian boys came along just clicked. That was nice to see. and gave us a push out. We got it out and got over the hill, and we couldn’t go any further because there were all these cars parked there. So we pulled off the side as far as we could and went swimming. When I went back to the truck, the cars were gone and I was able to move the truck to the parking lot. I told Cathy I wanted to go for a hike before it got dark, and luckily enough, Cathy, Olivia and my nephew were willing to go. Olivia was apprehensive because she didn’t want to walk, but she got in her head that she was going to be the leader and she beat us to the top. Once we got to the high cliff, I told the kids I needed to talk to Cathy in private for a minute. C: I didn’t know what was going on. We had gone up the trail the year before and up to the cliff. He shooed the kids away and proposed. It was very sweet. Olivia didn’t know what

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to think, but she was fine. She gave Tim a big hug and she was happy. Then this contest comes up. Whose idea was it to enter? C: We had gone out to supper with a bunch of people f rom his work, and the whole month before they had been saying, You’ve got to enter. They were on us all night long and we came home and decided to put our names in. We didn’t think too much about it. I was at work and it was 7:50 a.m. They said “Cathy Costello, Line 1.” I picked up and the voice said, This is so-and-so from 104.9 The Beach. Do you have a few minutes to talk to us? I was like, not really, I’m at work. I tried my best to get out of the phone call, but he said he would call back in half an hour. My heart was racing the whole time. All the girls were wondering what was wrong with me. They called back and gave me the spiel about how we had won and would be the couple on the cake. I went to my supervisor and asked if I could make a long-distance call to Tim. His boss answered and she started screaming. It was crazy. T: We had only entered the week before and the wedding was two weeks later. C: We hadn’t told anyone at all that we had entered. People were calling and it was crazy that day. The big day comes around, and you’re on a big snow cake. What was it like? C: I was really nervous until I got on top of the cake and it was so calm and quiet up there. It was fine once we were up there. T: You’re kind of apprehensive about the crowd of strangers watching you, but it was just us up there. What was most interesting about getting married on the snow cake? T: Getting Cathy known in the community. Everyone’s going to know her now! We pretty much went for a month straight being on the front page of the paper. C: At the time, it was so completely stressful, but I look back now and think it was a cool way to do it. Tim and Cathy will have another wedding this summer. They are thankful for the work of Linda Hillman-Rapley and Diana Simpson for organizing the wedding.

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Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 5

Where do you find a knife to cut that cake?

Tim Hoffman and Cathy Costello climbed the stairs February 14 to get married on a giant cake carved out of snow in front of hundreds of family, friends and onlookers. They were chosen to be the bride and groom at the top of the cake after entering a contest run by The Beach 104.9 FM in Goderich as part of the Grand Bend Chamber of Commerce Winter Carnival celebrations. Right: Waiting to say “I do.” Below: The happy couple kisses after saying their vows. Below right: Laurie Beth Reycraft and Scott Russell got married on a similar cake in the same spot 19 years ago. They’re still happily married, which the Hoffmans see as a good omen. They attended the wedding to offer their best wishes.

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Strip Thoughts

6 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

Who needs local news? View from the Strip By Casey Lessard You may have seen – or not seen but noticed – that A-Channel London no longer has a morning show. The people who lost their jobs there are among many cut from the television station, including some who will be let go in August. Also gone are two bureau stations in Wingham and Windsor. It’s a tough time for television journalists in southwestern Ontario, that’s for sure. I used to be one of those people, working at CKCO in Kitchener until 2005. And I went to school, worked with, or worked beside several of the people who lost their jobs this week at A-Channel. Anjhela and Gloria played their music on the morning show a couple of years ago, and my dad was interviewed several times by Wingham’s Scott Miller when the sewer debate was happening in Crediton. I saw many of these journalists after Bill and Helene Regier were murdered, and again at the Imeson trial. I’m sure you’d recognize some of their faces. Television is facing tough times as advertising dollars dry up in the current economic climate. But let’s be honest; does local television serve a purpose? If the advertising dollars aren’t there, isn’t it just a big waste of money on a very large make-work project? Who needs local TV when we have the internet? You can do pretty much everything you need on the net, including watching your favourite shows, talking to friends, making friends, making enemies, whatever. More importantly, you can even read the news on-line. Who needs TV news? Heck, you don’t even need to buy a newspaper – you can get that on-line, too. And it’s free! To the Editor: A huge thank you to those who supported the troop morale spaghetti dinner. Over $2,000 was raised, including $400 from people who didn’t even attend the dinner. A special thanks to the volun-

In fact, that’s true for journalists, too. We don’t need to be in Wingham, Dashwood, or even Varna to know what’s happening there. It’s all on the internet, and a TV assignment editor can simply send someone from London to do the story when it’s needed. Even better, forget London and centralize in Toronto. It’s not that far to drive. Besides, do you really care what happens in your own community, on your street, to your neighbours? That information is overrated, and someone has to be blogging about it on the internet, right? Maybe even someone who actually lives in this area. Personally, I don’t own a TV, but you probably do. Let’s look at the bigger picture. The loss of local programming at A-Channel is not just about the fact of the loss. It raises a larger question: do we really need local news? A few hundred people in this community (meaning you, the Grand Bend Strip subscriber) think it’s important to read the local news in this newspaper, and the other paper has a few readers, too. But how long will that last before the internet takes over and you’re the last to know when someone from your community is named a Canadian champion, or that your child did something great? When local news outlets leave, start the clock. The most important part of this equation is the one the TV networks and the internet news providers can’t provide. Every news story starts as a local news story. Then it goes regional, then provincial, national and international. If there’s no local news provider, there’s no news. That’s the truth. You know the value of local news – you even pay me to do it. Thank you. Now spread the word. Maybe we can keep some of those people at A-Channel producing news that matters to you. If you think local TV news is important write your support for A-Channel news to the CRTC, CTV Globemedia, and your MP.

teers who produced the meal and refreshments, and to the Grand Bend Sobey’s and No Frills stores for donating product. Harry C. Young - Greenway A big thank you to all who Publisher/Editor: Casey Lessard Advertising Sales: Casey Lessard Chief Photographer: Casey Lessard

Grand Bend Strip P.O. Box 218 Grand Bend, Ontario N0M 1T0 CANADA Phone: (519) 614-3614 Fax: 1 (866) 753-2781 mail@grandbendstrip.com http://www.grandbendstrip.com

Distribution: Joan McCullough, Rita Lessard and Casey Lessard Contributors: Tom Lessard - my dad Rita Lessard - my mom Anjhela Michielsen - social justice Jenipher Appleton - nature/birding Lance Crossley - national affairs James Eddington - fine dining Lorette Mawson - interior design

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Tell me again why we’re in Afghanistan Alternative View By Lance Crossley Prime Minister Stephen Harper drew heavy criticism earlier this month when he told CNN that international forces in Afghanistan were never going to defeat the insurgency. His comments provoked a tongue-lashing by everybody from opposing political parties to the renowned Washington-based magazine Foreign Affairs. What’s really shocking about Harper’s comments is not their legitimacy; many reputable sources close to the issue have said the same thing for a long time now. The real scandal is what his comments and the ensuing reaction to it reveal about the pathetic scope of debate on the Afghanistan issue. Those who criticize Harper do so because they believe the war can be won, or that it is an insult to soldiers to say otherwise. What links Harper and his critics is that they all justify the war based on whether it is winnable or not. If we can win, we should stay. If we are going to lose, we should go. (A few years ago Harper was happy to boast to the world that Canadians “don’t cut and run”.) There’s been an appalling lack of critical thought in this country about this war ever since the former Liberal government signed up for George Bush’s “war on terror”. Iraq has had plenty of critics, but Afghanistan has been strangely immune to criticism. Nowhere can I find a convincing answer to a very sim-

ple question: Why are we there? Are we there because of September 11? The Taliban were not involved in the planning of 9/11. Before the invasion, the United States propped up the Taliban regime with millions of dollars until American oil interests were unable to build a lucrative pipeline through the country. That is why government documents show the U.S. was planning to overthrow the Taliban well before the terrorist attacks. Sound like Iraq? This is a more rational explanation than the idea of squandering billions of dollars just to hunt down one man. Are we there to instil freedom and democracy? In October 2001, the U.S. and its allies ignored the pleas of 1,000 non-Taliban Afghan leaders to stop the bombing of their country. The leaders begged the West to overthrow the Taliban regime through other means – a goal they believed was possible without killing. Why were these proposed alternatives never considered? Are we there to counter Islamic fundamentalism? We now have a country run by drug warlords with no viable economy, horrendous rates of illiteracy, and widespread starvation. Nothing has improved. Things are worse. Worse yet, the Taliban has been given a new lease on life thanks to the hatred the war has incited among Afghans. To date, more than 100 Canadian soldiers have died. With each death, this country turns into hero-worship mode, turning our soldiers into martyrs for dying for such a ‘noble cause’. But their deaths do not make them heroes; rather, they become tragic figures. Their deaths are tragic because we cannot give a good reason why they had to die.

helped at the troop morale spaghetti dinner. Kitchen: Gayle McGregor; Brad Hawkins; Rick; and Barry Hill. Servers: Al Noxell; Joan McCullough; Jeanette Wales. Special thanks to Mike Tieman for keeping everything full and

Gord Glazier for running to the store. Many thanks to those who donated home-made sauce: Linda Hill; Fred and Helen Teeple; Mary and Jim Blair; Lois Gilbert; Marilyn Dick; Craig Coltman; and Sheila.

Advertising is accepted on condition that, in the event of an error, the portion of the ad occupied by the error will not be charged for, but the balance will be paid at the usual rate. It is the responsibility of the advertiser to check their ads on first publication, and the publisher accepts no responsibility for errors in multiple insertions. The Grand Bend Strip reserves the right to reject or edit any advertisement likely to offend community standards and/or the law. All material herein, including advertising design, is copyrighted and may not be reproduced in any form.

Grand Bend Strip is printed every other Wednesday in the summer and monthly in the winter. For this edition, 1000 were printed with more than 600 sent directly to subscribers in the Grand Bend area, and across North America.

Our local businesses were very generous: Mike and Terri Rahn of No Frills; and Bob Uhrig of Sobey’s. It was a great success and we loved the support. Thanks to all. Sheila Tiedeman Grand Bend Legion Branch 498

Winter subscriptions cost $12. Alert the Grand Bend Strip of any address changes, and to let us know if you should be but are not receiving your copy of the paper.

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CASEY

365 .COM

A creativity development project by Strip photographer Casey Lessard

Exhibiting this July at Bliss Studio in Port Franks

Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 7


Strip Feature

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Day’s End on Vanneck Road

Fran Roelands, Ailsa Craig. Watercolour - $700

Lucky 13 for Paint Ontario Focus of annual show is representational art Paint Ontario MARCH 14 TO APRIL 5  a.m. to  p.m. - Lambton Heritage Museum

By Casey Lessard “Fight poverty, buy art.” That’s the mantra Paint Ontario founder Barry Richman uses to encourage people to support the representational art show he started in 1996. “Paint Ontario was established by me, selfishly,” says Richman, “to serve artists like me – representational artists. We paint something that looks like that thing. Not abstract, not installations.” This year’s juried show accepted 300 entries from about 110 artists; only 120 fit on the walls at the Lambton Heritage Museum. Most artists are from Ontario, with some from Michigan and elsewhere. Some artists will have no pieces accepted into the show, and the most an artist can have in the show is three. It’s an attractive venue for artists for a reason. Forty-three paintings sold last year, an increase from the year before; this year may be different because of the economic climate. “I don’t know any place that sells 43 pieces in three weeks. I don’t know how sales will go, but we’re up 50 per cent in

entries from last year.” All of the art is available for sale, with prices ranging from $175 to $6,000. Last year’s average sale price was $645. To prize for best in show is $2000, with other prizes offered. They include purchase awards for two pieces: $750 for a local piece featuring people living a healthy lifestyle that will be purchased by the Grand Bend Area Health Services and paid for by John and Helen Walsh; and $500 for a piece chosen by Richman to join the Paint Ontario permanent collection. Richman is available to give tours to anyone coming to the show for the first time; he also has a wall set up with a good cross-section of the different subjects represented in the show. “The biggest thing I enjoy is watching how artists have grown compared to last year. Artists come and are very objective about why not all of their pieces got in the show, or why none got in. They find out where they’re falling short and talk to me about what makes a good painting or a great painting. To me, that’s very important.” For more information, visit www.paintontario.com Luminous Soul

Gwen Card, Appin. Alkyd oil - $1,000

In Flight

Lynda White, London. Watercolour - $800

August Evening

L.L. Jones, Parkhill. Pastel - $700.


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Strip Events

Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 9

Tundra swans returning soon Return of the Tundra Swans March  to April   a.m. to  p.m. – Lambton Heritage Museum www.returnoftheswans.com

On the Wing

Ken Jackson, London. Watercolour - $1200 at Paint Ontario

If you’re a fan of birds or awesome spectacles, you should visit the Thedford Bog east of the Lambton Heritage Museum this month as the tundra swans return. Every spring, thousands of tundra swans leave the eastern U.S. seaboard en route to the Canadian arctic. There’s no specific date to predict when they will first arrive, but the museum’s website can keep you up to date on their progress. “It’s just part of their migration habit,” says director and curator John Tremain. “They’ve been raised with that route. It’s a nice 24 trip for them from Chesapeake Bay. They arrive tired and rest and feed here for about two weeks.” The birds return in the fall, but don’t rest for long because it’s not as safe; spring thaw waters on fields give them space from predators and plenty to eat in the form of corn left over from the harvest. The best place to find the birds is off Greenway Road, on the road east of Highway 21 just before the road curves north. Bring binoculars and a camera with a telephoto lens (perhaps even a tripod or monopod), and dress appropriately. Pinery naturalists and Friends of the Pinery make regular trips to the area with spotting scopes for visitors to view the swans.

Who needs spring when winter looks like this?

To get you in the mood for spring, Grand Bend artist Jack Winn presents an exhibition of small panels of winter scenes at Baillie’s Framing (beside the Grand Bend post office). The 15 panels, ranging in size from 6”x8” to 12”x15”, all depict local scenes. Some of the paintings are part of the juried show, Paint Ontario. The show runs from March 14 to April 3, with an opening reception Saturday, March 21 at noon. For more, visit jackwinn.com


10 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

Strip Events

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This photo: Jade Wuerch of Zurich prepares a modern motif. Left: Dariann Telford of Zurich touches up the Wurlitzer. Below left: Ashley Wettlaufer of Exeter, Meghan McGill of Grand Bend, Syarra Kirk of Exeter and Laura Gehan of Hensall work on the 1950s section.

Meet Me at the Diner Exeter Skating Club Carnival Sunday, March   and  p.m. (two shows) - South Huron Recreation Centre  (advance) or  (at door),  for children  and under While skaters prepare their routines for the Exeter Skating Club carnival March 29, students at South Huron District High School are preparing a backdrop to match the theme, Meet Me at the Diner. “In groups they came up with images that reflect the various eras from the 1950s to now,” says visual arts teacher Carleen Hone, who is supervising the project by her Grade 10 art class. Among the images are portraits of Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe, and Garfield, as well as images of breakdancing and iPods. The SHDHS band will also perform at the carnival, which features junior national skating champions and local skaters.

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Flying South Advice from Mom

Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 11

Go West - to Frankenmuth Keeping the Peace By Tom Lessard, C.D.

underwear – just in case the bottom falls out. You can never be too careful, you know! Everyone tells me I deserve a rest, so I’m looking forward to a nice holiday with my best friend and sister. Perhaps I can do something about the washed out look that seems to have attacked my person. One more reason to take a sunny holiday. Since I’ll be flying, I’m going to leave you with a final note of a joke heard from my friend Frank. At an airline ticket counter, a small boy with his mother told the agent he was two years old. The man looked at him suspiciously and asked, “Do you know what happens to little boys who lie?” “Yes. They get to fly for half price.” Happy birthday to my granddaughter Abby, who will turn twelve March 12, and to my daughter-in-law Val who will be… older on March 27. All the best, girls! Editor’s Note: Happy birthday, mom! Enjoy your vacation - you deserve a break!

More than 100 performers, musicians, directors, stage managers and production crew need temporary rental accommodation for the 2009 Huron Country Playhouse season. “We rely heavily on the community’s support,” facility manager Paul Pembleton said in a release. The average accommodation rate is $70 per week, Pembleton said, and cast and crew work five weeks at a time, including two weeks of rehearsals and three weeks of performances; some work the whole season. Accommodations close to the theatre are

appreciated, but some performers have access to vehicles. Required amenities include cooking and washroom facilities. “It’s a great way to bring in some extra money if you have an empty room or two in your home, or a private apartment, basement apartment, or empty cottage that would be available during the summer,” Pembleton said, noting some people host several actors for the whole season, while others host for just one five-week period. Info: Paul Pembleton (519) 238-8387 x50 or paul@draytonentertainment.com.

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Playhouse actors need shelter this summer

troopers were escorting old Lawrence out of the establishment. We approached them and asked what the trouble was. It seems that Lawrence was giving the employees a hard time and creating a disturbance. We told them that he was with us that we would look after him. They were kind enough to agree after giving us a warning. Off we went with Lawrence between us until we came to a pretty little shaded park where we propped him against a tree. By this time we were dry again. Gig spotted a store a short ways away and took off. He came back with a brown paper bag containing two bottles of wine. It reminded me of our days in Cyprus on the second tour. Anyway, we didn’t take long disposing of the grapes, ensuring that Lawrence had only a couple of sips each round. The sun was heading west by this time, so we headed back to the rendezvous with the bus. My wife and her friends were there to greet us. Off we went home. I never did get to see Santa. Congratulations Bill and Christine, who welcomed Johan Robert March 4, a little brother for Will. Happy Birthday to Rita, April 5!



What a glorious sunny day! This past Friday, March 6, the warm sun was shining and the promise of nice weather appeared to be our reward for enduring such a bitterly cold three months of icy temperatures. But, alas, it was short lived; I went to start my car early Saturday morning and it was back to scraping the ice off. Then came the rain, but I’m not one to despair as my mind is on my plans to go to Punta Cana on March 16. Thanks to the generosity of my sister Joan, I’m able to go somewhere that will thaw me out. I’ve been packed for at least three weeks, so I guess you could say I’m eager to go. I probably won’t get much of a tan, but with any luck my freckles and age spots will make it look like I belong. Joan will be quite tanned as she’s been around. Let me rephrase that: she’s a seasoned traveler and she loves the sun. Regardless, if I get a tan or not I’m looking forward to going. I’ve packed the necessary supplies like sunscreen, after-sun lotion, insect repellent, and of course, Imodium and extra

Frankenmuth, Michigan is a beautiful little town on I-75 between Saginaw and Bay City. The big attraction is a Santa’s Village, but it is also known for having a variety of excellent restaurants and parks. It also has its very own brewery, from which you can purchase buckets of beer of various sizes at a convenient window without even entering the building. I know, because this was my first stop. How did we get there? Well, as usual, we purchased tickets from the Albatross and of course that was the embarking area. Those days, the bar was closed on Sundays, but it amazed me how much liquid flowed. When bar crowds don’t have to drive to their destination, they naturally enjoy their spirits. The bus arrived and off we went. This trip, we had no problems at the Sarnia-Port Huron border. We stopped at a restaurant shortly after crossing the border and had a snack. From there to Frankenmuth it’s about two hours, a pleasant bus ride of rolling countryside and small towns and villages. The only different between that part of Michigan and our part of Ontario is the license plates. When we arrived at our destination, the heat got to me and I took a little nap under a tree while the rest of the gang spread out. I awoke after a short time to find a parade passing a block away. My wife disappeared somewhere leaving me without funds. Wandering around, I met my buddy Gig and we hooked up together to watch the parade. When it was over while searching for the rest of the busload, we stopped at the brewery where Gig treated for a couple of buckets. After a time we carried on downtown. We were passing a hotel when, all of a sudden, there was a commotion and the next thing we knew the



By Rita Lessard


Strip at the Carnival

12 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

Jaimee Wells is the head, but Megan McConnell is the body as the Munchkins at the kids’ talent show.

http://www.GrandBendStrip.com

Blake Percy performs Wonderwall by Oasis at the talent show at the Oakwood Inn pub.

Scenes from the Carnival The second weekend of this year’s Grand Bend Winter Carnival featured not only a wedding (see pages 4-5), but also a parade, waiters’ race and kids’ talent show among other events. More photos at www.grandbendstrip.com

Photos by Casey Lessard Pam Geoffrey of Paddington’s struggles to keep her balance in the waiter races at the Colonial Hotel.

Olivia Thomas represents the Home Hardware float in the Rotary Parade.

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Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 13

Do your part for the planet March 28 Living in Balance By Jenipher Appleton On the last Saturday in March at 8:30 p.m., people around the world will be turning off their lights, computers, TV’s, etc. for 60 minutes. Why, you may ask? This ecofriendly gesture shows a global awareness of the importance of saving energy. The goal for Earth Hour 2009 is for a billion people in over 1,000 cities to turn out their lights at the same time, demonstrating solidarity of caring for our planet. Imagine cities like Toronto, New York, or Tokyo; lights out in thousands of skyscrapers, malls, businesses and homes. Imagine families playing interactive board games instead of electronic ones; or having meaningful conversations; some of them may even include discussions about the eco-system or the future of the planet. Earth Hour began in Sydney, Australia in 2007 when 2.2 million homes and businesses took part. In 2008, over 50 million people participated. Lights were out on San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, Rome’s Colosseum, the Sydney Opera House, and the Coca Cola Billboard in Times Square, to

name a few. To learn more about Earth Hour, or to sign up, you can do a Google search for “Earth Hour 2009” to find several websites. This year, the idea is that your light switch in the off position is a vote for Planet Earth. Leaving it on is a vote for global warming. Back in the 1970s, the slogan was ‘If we each save a little, we’ll all save a lot.’ Too bad not many people paid attention to the idea then. We might be in better shape now if they had!

Sure signs of spring Sightings in the first week of March • Red-winged blackbirds • Grackles • Robins • A killdeer • Great blue heron • Canada geese flying north or nesting in the corn field • Bald eagles in North Middlesex • Gold finches changing plumage to brighter yellow

Need a change? Try reinventing what you have Eye for Design By Lorette Mawson http://www.DecorateWithLorette.com We are approaching that time of year when, quite frankly, I am ready to say goodbye to winter, open up those windows and welcome spring. This time of year seems to get me motivated to spruce things up a little, which brings me to something I love to do: reinventing things I already have. During these economic times, we are being frugal with our money. It always amazes me how some good old-fashioned elbow grease, paint, fabric or new handles can transform something familiar into a thing of beauty. Just because a piece was bought for a certain place, does not mean that it cannot be used for something totally different. I

have seen china cabinets brought into bathrooms and a dresser used as a TV stand. Remove doors or change colour; there are many possibilities. This is also great time to declutter. Because we spend more time indoors in the winter, things sometimes get a little disorganized. Sometimes that means we have to make a furniture purchase; if this is the case, I always look for furniture that is multi-purpose. For example, I just purchased a set of cubes that look like ottomans, and which provide extra seating in my living room. The seat can be flipped over to become a tray that comes in handy as a table for drinks. They also provide storage space for things like toys, magazines. They are soft, so kids don’t have to worry about hurting themselves. Multi-purpose furniture like this makes life a little easier. So, whether you purchase a new item or you reinvent something that you already have, it is all about creating a place you feel comfortable in and that you love to come home to. If you are interested in purchasing cubes or other interesting

items, check out Leon’s Buy and Sell outside of Exeter. They have new items, as well as affordable items that, with a little tender, love and care, could be great pieces. You just have to think outside the cube.

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To Do List

14 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

To Do List Community/Charity EVERY TUESDAY  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion Bingo

ing. Ian Jean from the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority will present “Native Plants”. More and more stress is being placed on using plants and trees that are native to our area. He will assist with pictures and discussion.

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THURSDAY, APRIL 2

 to : a.m. - Grand Bend Legion Line Dancing  p.m. - Grand Bend CHC Sunset Cinema Social Film Group prese  to  p.m. nts “Touching the Void”, a true film about Parkhill Leisure Club two British climbers who become separated Yoga Classes, info and registration call on their descent from a mountain in the Anne 519-243-3552. Beginners welcome. Andes. An amazing tale of survival!

THURSDAY, APRIL 2 EVERY OTHER T HURSDAY Schoolhouse Restaurant, Grand Bend Socrates Café. An informal discussion group. For more information contact Dinah Taylor, 519-238-1114 or Ian Young, 519238-5335.

 p.m. - Grand Bend CHC SATURDAY, APRIL 11 Sunset Cinema Social Film Group prese  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion nts “Touching the Void”, a true film about Live Music with Bob Finlay two British climbers who become separated on their descent from a mountain in the Health & Fitness Andes. An amazing tale of survival!

THURSDAYS  a.m. – Port Franks Comm. Centre Healthy Lifestyle Exercise Program. See Tuesdays

 to  p.m. - South Huron Golf & Fitness Centre, Exeter Workout for Your Life. $8 per class; $5 for Arts & Entertainment  to  a.m. - Southcott Pines gym members, spouses and students. Call Clubhouse Workout for Your Life. $8 per class; $5 for Beth Sweeney, (519) 238-5555. THURSDAYS spouses and students. Call Beth Sweeney,  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Art Centre Open Painting. Cost is $10 - bring a proj- (519) 238-5555. FRIDAYS ect and materials and paint with various  to  a.m. - Southcott Pines artists. : to  a.m. - Grand Bend Legion Clubhouse T.G.I.F. (Thank God I’m Fit) exercise Workout for Your Life. $8 per class; $5 for class with Elinor Clarke 519-294-6499. $3 spouses and students. Call Beth Sweeney, FRIDAYS per week; all fees go to charity (519) 238-5555. : to : p.m. - Grand Bend Youth Centre : to  p.m. : to  a.m. - Grand Bend Legion Grand Bend Drum Circle. Contact Anita Anne’s Yoga Works studio, Port Franks T.G.I.F. (Thank God I’m Fit) exercise at the Youth Centre or call 519-238-8759. Yoga Classes, info and registration call class with Elinor Clarke 519-294-6499. $3 Anne 519-243-3552. Beginners welcome. per week; all fees go to charity SATURDAY, MARCH 14  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion St. Patrick’s Day with Mike Fagan TUESDAYS FRIDAY, MARCH 13  a.m. – Port Franks Comm. Centre  a.m. to noon - GB. Public School Healthy Lifestyle Exercise Program. Fuel Your Active Lifestyle at Ontario THURSDAY, MARCH 19 TO MAY 7 Program includes warm up, low impact Early Years Centre.  to : p.m. - G.B. Art Centre Photo classes with Casey Lessard. aerobic workout, strength work and Beginner classes at 6 p.m. and advanced stretching. Sponsored in part by Healthy TUESDAY, MARCH 17 classes at 7:45 p.m. $80 for eight weeks. Call Living Lambton. Cost: Free!! Everyone  a.m. to  p.m. - Grand Bend CHC 519-614-3614 or visit http://www.grand- welcome. Contact Cindy Maxfield, Health Fuel Your Active Lifestyle. Pick up recipes Promoter at the GBACHC, 519-238-1556 and enjoy some taste testing. bendphoto.com for more information. ext 6 to register.

MONDAYS

EVERY FRIDAY  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion Meat Draw

THURSDAY, MARCH 12 : p.m. - St. John’s Anglican Church. Grand Bend Diners Program - second and fourth Thursday of the month. Transportation is available along with take out. Cost $9/person, entertainment and social time. Contact Town & Country Support Services at 519-235-0258.

SATURDAY, MARCH 14 TO APRIL 5  a.m. to  p.m. - Lambton Heritage Museum Return of the Swans. Open daily. $5 adults, $4 seniors, students/children $3. Call 519-243-2600 for details.  a.m. to  p.m. - Lambton Heritage Museum Paint Ontario. Competition and Sale begins. Regular Museum admission applies. Contact Barry Richman for details 519-2386213.

SATURDAY, MARCH 21 TUESDAY, MARCH 17  a.m. - Grand Bend Legion Grand Bend Men’s Probus Meeting. Speaker Greg Van Hevel will discuss GeoThermal Heating. Everyone welcome.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 25 Colonial Hotel Huron County Playhouse Guild Luncheon Meeting. Guest speaker Pierre St. Laurent will show a slide presentation on Polar Bears. Members and Guests welcome. Phone Mary at 519-238-5640.

MONDAY, MARCH 30  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion Grand Bend Horticultural Society meet-

THURSDAY, MARCH 19

 to  p.m. - South Huron Golf & Blessings Community Store, Zurich Fitness Centre, Exeter Cooking Outside of the Box. Yummy, lowWorkout for Your Life. $8 per class; $5 for cost, healthy recipes! 10-3 p.m. Call Miranda gym members, spouses and students. Call at 519-238-1556 ext 222 THURSDAY, MARCH 26 Shoot Like A Pro with Mary Lynn Fluter. Beth Sweeney, (519) 238-5555. Join us for a day of digital shooting and criWEDNESDAY, MARCH 25 tique with Mary Lynn. Get tips on expo- WEDNESDAYS  a.m. to  p.m. - Grand Bend CHC sure and composition; experiment and Men Can Cook. Advance your cooking  to  a.m. - Southcott Pines share in the company of others. Always fun skills and enjoy a tasty healthy lunch for $5. Clubhouse and informative. Contact Teresa Marie for Workout for Your Life. $8 per class; $5 for Contact Miranda at 519-238-1556 ext 222. time, cost and information at: 238-8978 or spouses and students. Call Beth Sweeney, grbartcentre@hay.net. Advance registration (519) 238-5555. : to : p.m. or  to : p.m. required. Grand Bend CHC Mental Health Education and Support : to  a.m. - Grand Bend Legion T.G.I.F. (Thank God I’m Fit) exercise Group. Monthly support group for famSATURDAY, MARCH 28 class with Elinor Clarke 519-294-6499. $3 ily and friends. Contact Social Worker Lise  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion Callahan at 519-238-1556 ext. 230. per week; all fees go to charity Horse Races  to  p.m. - Grand Bend Legion Horse Races

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EVERYBODY WELCOME! Fun Darts Mondays @ 7 p.m. Bingo Tuesdays @ 7 p.m. Meat Draws Fridays @ 5 p.m. Hall rentals - contact Sharon (519) 238-6865


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Thursday, March 12, 2009 • 15

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16 • Thursday, March 12, 2009

Pleasant pork with potatoes & peppers Pork tenderloin with a balsamic and honey reduction, served with garlic smashed potatoes and sautéed peppers Recipes by James Eddington Eddington’s of Exeter  Main Street, Exeter -- - www.eddingtons.ca Photos by Casey Lessard

What you’ll need Pork tenderloin Fresh garlic Rosemary Sea salt Vegetable oil Olive oil Balsamic vinegar Honey Beef stock Red and white wines Potatoes Butter 35% cream Herbs Parmesan cheese Peppers

Strip in the Kitchen

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Pork tenderloin Clean silver skin off tenderloin (see photo). Rub tenderloin with chopped rosemary, fresh pressed garlic and sea salt. In hot oven safe pan, sear tenderloin in vegetable oil for about 45 seconds per side. Put tenderloin in 400° oven for 20 minutes. Once tenderloin is cooked, let rest for another 5-10 minutes. Tenderloin then can be sliced to desired thickness. Note: pork tenderloin should have a hint of pink. Do not over cook!

Balsamic in honey reduction In a small pot, add 4 oz of balsamic vinegar, 4 oz of beef stock or demi-glace (you can substitute with chicken stock if necessary), and 1/2 cup of red wine. Bring to boil, then reduce to medium heat simmer. Let reduce for app 15-20 minutes. Once reduced, add honey. Add small amounts until desired sweetness is reached. This reduction will last one week refrigerated and can be drizzled over sliced pork tenderloin at time of plating.

Garlic smashed potatoes This is a great way to use leftover potatoes, whether baked, roasted, or boiled. In large skillet pan, use a fork to smash precooked potatoes (with skins on or off ). Over medium heat, add 2 tbsp. of butter, 1 tsp. of fresh chopped garlic, 3 oz of 35% cream, parmesan cheese and fresh chopped herbs (which ever herbs tickle your fancy – cilantro, thyme, oregano, basil, etc.) For added flavor, white wine is always a nice addition, but don’t go crazy; 2 oz is plenty. Cook in pan until hot and liquids are cooked off and fully absorbed into potatoes. (You can use these potatoes as a base to put your entrée on, which is doubly good because it can keep your main dish hot for a longer period of time and gives excellent height for presentation.)

Sautéed peppers Using a mixture of red, yellow and orange peppers, cut into medium-sized triangles, and sautée on low to medium heat with a splash of olive oil and fresh sea salt. Do not rush; let your peppers cook slowly to maximize the sweet flavors.

Photos:

Top: The finished product with all the fixings. Left: How to skin the silver off pork. Right: What a pepper looks like after James Eddington carves it, before chopping.

Vol. 2 #17 Grand Bend Strip, March 12, 2009  

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