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Falling in love with fall

Jeff Leiper City Councillor conseiller municipal

613-580-2485 kitchissippiward.ca

October 2020

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Transitions & New Traditions

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100% LOCAL

BUILDING BRIDGES Former Mayor Jackie Holzman speaks at the opening of the Jackie Holzman Bridge in Kitchissippi on Sept. 10. Pages 5-6. PHOTO CREDIT: CITY OF OTTAWA.

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EDITOR'S LETTER ‘P’ stands for ‘pumpkin,’ ‘potion’ and ‘perspective’ BY MAUREEN MCEWAN

A

are wondering if the day can be celebrated safely. KT heard the latest from Ottawa Public Health and the mayor. Over the last months, Causeway Work Centre has had to adapt, like many organizations. We spoke with new Executive Director Hailey Hechtman to check in with the local non-profit. West End Kids celebrated its 25th anniversary this August. We heard from owners Sheba and Gordie Schmidt about their time in Westboro and the next chapter. The pandemic has left many feeling low, but Paul Knoll is bringing sunshine to Kitchissippi. Knoll’s positive and colourful artworks have been featured around the ward

and he’s working on a new mural. Ida Crocker, a WWII veteran and Westboro Legion member, celebrated her 100th birthday this summer. Ida is known as the local Legion's "oldest and newest member.” For this month’s Humans of Kitchissippi feature, we connected with Pamela Naymark. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and we are grateful to Pamela for sharing her story with us. In Early Days, we travel back in time to the classic diner era. This month’s column explores the history of the Top Hat and Jimmy’s Restaurant, two unforgettable restaurants along Wellington Street West. And that’s it from me. Enjoy all the best that autumn has to offer. To quote L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables, “I am so glad that I live in a world where there are Octobers.”

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BIZ ROUNDUP NOW OPEN

NAK Gallery opened on Sept. 24 at 1285 Wellington St. W. The gallery’s mission is

The Hintonburg Place Plaza Project has been completed and the public space is now open! Nine large-scale, orange letters (H-I-N-T-O-N-B-U-R-G) now stand at the corner of Parkdale and Wellington Street West for locals to enjoy as “part street furniture, part public art, part fun,” as the Wellington West BIA describes them.

COMING SOON

At the end of September, Batter Up Bakery moved into Westboro. The local

Moissy Fine Jewellery is setting up their second Canadian location in Westboro. The company is a “trendsetting Moissanite Fine Jewellery Store, bringing to our customers the only store of its kind, that showcases Moissanite in all its infinite beauty,” the website states. Their grand opening is scheduled for early November, so stay tuned!

GOING VIRTUAL

Merit Travel has decided to transition to a fully virtual office by the end of September. The company will no longer have a physical office in Westboro (previously located at

375 Richmond Rd.). To learn more, visit merittravel.com.

CHANGE OF ADDRESS

Karma Dharma, the local marketing agency, has relocated to a new office on the second floor of 346 Richmond Rd., just west of their previous location. Mutts & Pups Daycare and Spaw has moved temporarily into 371 Richmond Rd. until December. Daycare services are unavailable until the new year, but the company is offering grooming services from its temporary location.

3 • October 2020

Welcome to Westboro Village, Inkline Media! The agency offers “a wide range of creative and digital services, all focused on increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of their businesses to deliver results,” their company website states. Inkline Media moved into the second floor at 346 Richmond Rd.

bakery specializes in custom desserts like cakes, cookies, cupcakes and more! Check out their social media pages for the latest news from their sweet shop.

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MUST Boutique has opened its doors in Westboro Village. Shoppers can now visit the upscale women’s clothing boutique located at 256B Richmond Rd!

“to showcase and promote contemporary visual artists from Canada and around the world to visitors and residents in the National Capital Region,” its website states. The first exhibition is a collective that aims to introduce the community to the gallery’s artists.

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Here are the latest headlines in Kitchissippi business news from our neighbourhood BIAs.

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very happy autumn to you, readers. Let me clear something up: There is never an intentional theme for any given edition of Kitchissippi Times (except on the rare, magical occasion when we deliberately focus on pizza or other wonderful things). Nevertheless, each month, common threads emerge as we connect with our neighbours and develop our stories. In writing these Editor’s letters, my monthly duty is to reflect on everything, amidst our busy production cycle, and to try to see the bigger picture — “the forest for the trees,” to use the old idiom. Thus I stumbled on the main thread for October: Seeing the forest for the trees. In this edition, the idea of perspective wound its way through most of our articles.

Many of our interviewees maneuvered around life’s challenges and came out stronger, with different outlooks and experiences. I found that their stories helped to provide some much-needed perspective right now. So here’s what’s happening in community news: The Jackie Holzman Bridge opened in Kitchissippi in September, bringing together the communities of Civic Hospital and Wellington West. We caught up with former Mayor Holzman, Mayor Watson and Coun. Leiper about the newly-unveiled bridge. And the spooky season is upon us — As Halloween approaches, community members


HUMANS OF KITCHISSIPPI Humans of Kitchissippi is a special street photography project designed to introduce readers to some of the people who live, work and play in Kitchissippi. Each instalment of HOK contains three elements: a photo, a name and a quote from the subject that reveals a little bit about who they are. Go to kitchissippi.com to view our ongoing collection of humans.

Ottawa ON K1R 6K7 www.kitchissippi.com Kitchissippi, meaning “the Grand River,” is the former Algonquin name for the Ottawa River. The name now identifies the urban community to the west of downtown Ottawa.

Maureen McEwan editor@kitchissippi.com twitter.com/kitchissippi CONTRIBUTORS Judith van Berkom, Matthew Horwood, Charlie Senack, Hollie Grace James, Ellen Bond and Dave Allston. PROOFREADER Alicia Lim ADVERTISING SALES Eric Dupuis 613-238-1818 x273 eric@kitchissippi.com

PHOTO COURTESY OF PAMELA NAYMARK.

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October 2020 • 4

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EDITOR

Meet Pamela Naymark “I’m in the Westboro area. I’m married and I have two children: my youngest is two and the oldest is seven-and-a-half. I’ve continued to work full-time through my breast cancer treatment and I work in health care services with a focus in Indigenous health. I’m from Montreal, originally, and I moved to Ottawa about 15 years ago. We love this neighbourhood because it’s the best of Ottawa, in my opinion, in terms of the strong community, the schools, [and] the neighbourhood shopping. We’ve always been very drawn to it and are really happy to be living in this community. I’m an Ashkenazi Jew so I have the BRCA1 gene and my husband calls me the ‘poster child for genetic predisposition to cancer’ because I've been followed by the high risk services in Montreal and Toronto since I was 18. I was really on top of my screening and my tests and I still got it. It’s almost exactly a year ago that I got my diagnosis. The one last MRI [before this surgery] revealed one of the most aggressive types of breast cancer you can get. And then my double mastectomy was scheduled within 10 days. I thought I was ahead of it; I thought I had a few more years. I got it in stage one but if I hadn’t been followed so closely, I wouldn’t be here today. I had exceptional health care, everyone from my surgeon, to the nurse that took my blood constantly, to the receptionist reminding me of my appointments: we are so fortunate to have such great free

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CREATIVE DIRECTOR Tanya Connolly-Holmes creative@greatriver.ca GRAPHIC DESIGNER Celine Paquette celine@greatriver.ca FINANCE Cheryl Schunk, 238-1818 ext. 250 cheryl@greatriver.ca All other enquiries

health services. I was 39 when I was diagnosed and I just turned 40 a couple weeks ago. I’m not a normal woman in that sense — I’ve always been very, very high-risk. But even as a high-risk person, and even taking precautions, I probably could have done better. I think, for me, what’s important was that breast cancer does affect a younger population as well and the response was very difficult and I think that made my experience so much more [difficult] emotionally. Because I was young, people were constantly shocked and responded to me in a way that, emotionally, I couldn't cope with: “Oh, you’re so young. Poor you. I'm so sorry.'' That is something you don't tell a 39 year-old woman. Chemo was brutal. It was

painful and I was sick and it was horrible, but what was more horrible was people’s ridiculous responses in that way. I stopped telling people after a while because I didn't want that. That emotional energy that I had to invest in their response was the worst part. April 3rd was my last treatment. I have almost my full energy back. I have more surgery to do, unfortunately. For the most part, I feel like myself again, but it takes five years to say that you’re ‘cancer-free’. I often tell people at that time I will exhale. ” October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. To learn more, visit the Canadian Cancer Society’s website at www.cancer.ca. Collected by Hollie Grace James.

613-238-1818 info@kitchissippi.com Distribution A minimum of 15,000 copies are distributed from the Ottawa River to Carling Avenue between the O-Train tracks and Sherbourne Road. Most residents in this area will receive the Kitchissippi Times directly to their door. If you did not receive your copy, or would like additional copies, please contact us. Bulk copies are delivered to multi-unit dwellings and retail locations. Copies are available at Dovercourt Recreation Centre and Hintonburg Community Centre. info@kitchissippi.com The Kitchissippi Times is published by

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5 • October 2020

he Jackie Holzman Bridge has finally opened in Kitchissippi Ward, honouring the former mayor who dedicated most of her life to the city. On Sept. 4, the bridge formerly known as the Harmer Avenue pedestrian crossing opened, connecting the communities of Wellington West and Civic Hospital by foot. The former bridge closed two years ago to be replaced after aging infrastructure became too much to repair. Kitchissippi Ward Coun. Jeff Leiper said he’s very pleased to see the new bridge fully built, giving his kudos to the city for recognizing that this important community project couldn’t be put off. “What I really appreciate in this whole thing is that there was no question on

replacing the bridge,” Leiper said. “It was always assumed that we would replace this aging piece of infrastructure and not just let the residents find another way to get around because it really does play an important role in the community.” Leiper said the former bridge, built in the late 1950s or early 1960s, was showing its age. During his two terms on council, the bridge had to undergo netting repairs to ensure anything falling off the bridge wouldn’t fall and hit cars on the Queensway below. The bridge spans Highway 17, between Harmer Avenue South and Harmer Avenue North. When the city decided to replace the bridge, they decided to take it a step up from the former concrete structure with a chain link fence. Continues on next page

Private, limited enrollment swim lessons, and aquafitness are underway. Come for a drop-in swim in our warm pool.

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BY CHARLIE SENACK

THE POOL

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‘Even stronger together’: Jackie Holzman Bridge opens, connecting Kitchissippi communities

Stay fit with in-person classes and online options. Classes are underway.

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Councillor Tierney, Mayor Watson, former Mayor Holzman and Councillor Leiper take a walk at the opening of the Jackie Holzman Bridge in Kitchissippi. PHOTO CREDIT: CITY OF OTTAWA.


COMMUNITY NEWS ”One of the things you notice as you walk over the

bridge, compared to the previous one which was open to the air, is it’s very quiet.”

October 2020 • 6

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– Kitchissippi Ward Coun. Jeff Leiper

Mayor Jim Watson and former Mayor Jackie Holzman are joined by Councillors (from left to right) Kavanagh, McKenney, Tierney and Leiper at the opening of the Jackie Holzman Bridge (formerly the Harmer Avenue Bridge). PHOTO CREDIT: CITY OF OTTAWA

Jackie Holzman Bridge opens, connecting Kitchissippi communities Continues from previous page “The new bridge provides a calm, attractive, pleasant way to get back and forth between the Civic Hospital and Wellington Village,” Leiper said. The new $13.5 million bridge includes an enclosed roof, glass panels and bright lighting. Leiper said when it was being built, engineers had some difficulties bringing its accessibility standards up to modern-day code. Ramps had to be changed and infrastructure on the Queensway, such as electrical and pipes, had to be relocated.

Leiper said you can feel the significant improvements as you walk over the newly built bridge. “One of the things you notice as you walk over the bridge, compared to the previous one which was open to the air, is it’s very quiet,” he said, adding the new bridge has a counter to track data on how many people are cycling and walking over it. “You can have a pleasant conversation with someone when you are standing over the Queensway,” Leiper added. “It is lit well which is critical to safety; the ramps are very well-lit and it feels safer and less isolated

compared to the old one.” In January, when Mayor Jim Watson gave his State of the City Address, he announced he would be bringing forward a motion to rename the bridge after former Ottawa Mayor Jackie Holzman. The motion was passed unanimously in July. Holzman served as a city councillor in Richmond Ward (now known as Bay Ward) from 1982 to 1991, when she was elected as the city’s third female mayor, but the first female Jewish mayor. She gave up politics in 1991 but has been active in the community ever since.

Holzman later became the chair of the Ottawa Congress Centre and afterward served as chair of the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute. In 2007, she was appointed to the board of the National Capital Commission where she served for a number of years. Now at the age of 85, Holzman is still very active in the Ottawa community, religiously involved with her local Kiwanis Club. She’s also actively involved in breast cancer awareness and is an advocate for persons with disabilities. “Jackie has almost been as busy post-mayor as to when she was mayor,” joked Mayor Watson. “She has stayed very involved in the community. She and I are part of the same Kiwanis Club — she is much more active than I am due to time — but she’s very involved in Kiwanis which raises money for good causes.” “She put her service in Ottawa,” echoed Leiper. “She was not only mayor, but she put a lot of work into volunteering in various capacities to help better us as a city.” On Sept. 10, a small ceremony with about 100 people — including four generations of Holzman’s family — took place outside of the bridge to celebrate and recognize the name change. Holzman, now a resident of Kitchissippi Ward, says she was humbled and grateful to have a bridge named after her. “This bridge brings together two vibrant communities: The Civic Hospital and the Wellington communities,” the former Ottawa mayor said. “It makes them even stronger together.” Holzman says the bridge has already been used by her two great-grandsons who find it “cool” that their great-grandmother has a bridge named after her. She also made reference to famous bridges in songs and films, noting it’s “particularly sweet” this one is meant for only bicycle and pedestrian traffic. “My two grandsons [have] already scootered and biked across it, the bridge that their dad used to walk over every day on his way to Fisher ‘Ball of Confusion’ Park High School,” Holzman said in her remarks. “Continue building bridges — May all those who cross over remember that they are not alone. There are two vibrant communities supporting them.”


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Jack-o’-lanterns line the pumpkin path in Kitchissippi on Nov. 1, 2016. PHOTO COURTESY OF ANITA GRACE.

Costumes all around! A toddler has fun at the 2019 Wickedly Westboro event in Kitchissippi. PHOTO BY CHARLIE SENACK.

Double, double toil and trouble: Can Halloween and the spooky season be celebrated safely? BY CHARLIE SENACK

S

treets in Kitchissippi could be empty this Oct. 31 if Halloween is cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Politicians from all levels of government say it’s too soon to make a final call on whether the annual candyfilled day will go ahead as planned. With Ontario now entering a second wave of COVID-19, health officials across the province say no matter the circumstances we find ourselves in then,

it won’t be a normal year of trick-ortreating. In a recent statement, Ottawa Public Health said decisions will be made by Ontario’s health unit at a later date, but large gatherings or door-to-door visits are strongly discouraged. “Generally, we are strongly encouraging all the usual COVID wise and SocialWise measures – limiting gatherings and activities to your usual contacts, small groups and physical distancing,” the health unit said in a

statement. “Wearing a mask — and finding creative ways to include [them] into any costumes — being outdoors, and vigilance with regular hand washing.” As a ward, Kitchissippi has celebrated Halloween heartily in the past. There have been costume contests, pumpkin carving competitions, fun runs and fundraisers, movie marathons, haunted houses, pumpkin paths, spooky bashes and ghostly plays and exhibits. Annually, festivals like Wickedly Westboro have brought families together for trick-or-

treating, live entertainment and more. Dovercourt even hosted the first Ottawa Halloween Dog Parade (and fundraiser) in 2018. This spooky season will look different locally. Despite the limitations on trick-ortreating, Ottawa Public Health said there are still many fall and Halloween activities families can take part in. Saunders Farm has announced they are open with a wide variety of “spooktacular” Halloween activities to enjoy, but the farm is only operating at 10 per cent of its normal capacity. Events will be held strictly outdoors this year to adhere to physical distancing requirements. Ticket prices have also dropped due to a decrease in attractions because of public health restrictions. While dressing up on the farm has been discouraged in previous years, it’s now being encouraged to make the trip even more exciting for kids. Pumpkinferno has also returned to Upper Canada Village, located about


stated. “While many beloved activities will remain the same — pumpkin carving, decorating the home, creative costume making, crafts and baking — we are encouraging creativity to think of other ways to celebrate that don’t involve large gatherings with people outside your social circle, and adapting children’s activities to lower risk activities in lieu of door-to-door visits.” Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said there are many questions as to who has the authority to cancel Halloween. Like Ottawa Public Health, he said it’s hard to predict how people will react on Oct. 31. “I think what may end up happening is that most people, who I talk to at least, say they don’t want to open their doors,” Watson said. “We may find ourselves in this awkward situation where kids may

want to go out — some parents will want to go out and others won’t — but they will maybe not find many doors that are open or lights on.” Watson said he was forced to cancel his annual Halloween party at City Hall, which typically attracts upwards of 5,000 people, because physical distancing would not be possible. The mayor said he could only recall one time in his life when Halloween, also known as All Hallows' Eve, or All Saints' Eve, was cancelled. It was back in 1970 when the October Crisis, also known as the FLQ Crisis, was gripping parts of Quebec. The commotion started after Quebec Deputy Premier Pierre Laporte and British diplomat James Cross were kidnapped by Front de libération du Québec (FLQ).

Then Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau enacted the War Measures Act — the first and only time it’s ever been applied during peacetime. The kidnappers killed Laporte, but negotiations led to Cross' release. “In my town of Lachute, Quebec, James Cross’ daughter taught at my school, so I think the town agreed at the time that we would not go out for Halloween because there were bombs in people's mailboxes and so on,” Watson said. “It was a different time and circumstance, but COVID-19 has killed a lot more cases than just one, which was the case during the FLQ crisis.” Ottawa Public Health advises the public to find out the latest updates on COVID-19, and guidance for the upcoming holidays and events, at the health unit’s website at ottawapublichealth.ca.

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an hour east outside of Ottawa. The trip takes you back in time, centuries before the world was gripped by the COVID-19 pandemic, and allows you to see spectacular pieces of artwork created from over 2,000 carved pumpkins which light up the night sky. In a normal year, more than 5,000 people would visit the park every night to see the pumpkin carvings. This year, due to social distancing, the park is only allowed to have 360 guests per night. Ottawa’s health unit says it’s attractions like these that families should be considering as a way to bring a sense of normality during these uncertain times. “Just like many other activities and events this year, Halloween will require some adaptations and changes in our usual behaviours,” Ottawa Public Health

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9 • October 2020


GIVING Causeway continues to support Ottawa clients seeking employment

October 2020 • 10

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he COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t stopped Hintonburg non-profit organization Causeway from assisting those with mental health issues in finding meaningful employment. The new executive director of Causeway Work Centre, Hailey Hechtman, said “some big changes had to be made,” but that Causeway’s service providers have taken creative steps to continue supporting their Ottawa clients. Causeway has been assisting people with mental health issues to find employment and live independently since 1977. Over the years, the non-profit has evolved its activities to meet the needs of a broader spectrum of people, through one-on-one support, training and employment programs, cross-sector partnerships, and by creating sociallyminded businesses. In March, Causeway was initially forced to close its doors to the public.

It remains closed to the public, but continues to provide its services remotely. The organization received funding from the Ottawa Community Foundation to purchase laptops and webcams for staff to work at home, and for clients to attend virtual job interviews. Since April, Causeway has received 70 new clients and has connected 32 with jobs. “We’re really happy we’ve been able to provide that. Our job specialists do a ton of follow-ups with clients, and are looking to stay connected and see how people are doing as they navigate this very uncertain environment,” Hechtman said. Causeway has several program avenues to support clients in finding employment. Job Quest is a rapidsupported employment program that helps clients prepare for job interviews and write resumes, and finds work suited to their career preferences and goals.

Hailey Hechtman is the new executive director of Causeway Work Centre. PHOTO COURTESY OF HAILEY HECHTMAN.

Solutions for Youth assists young people with developing the skills and work habits necessary to find employment, through four-

week workshops and 12-week work placements. Causeway is also partnered with Rise. The national charity is dedicated

For up to date information on #COVID19 follow @ottawahealth, @CPHO_Canada, @govcanhealth, and Canada.ca/coronavirus Member of parliament for Ottawa Centre COMMUNITY OFFICE 107 Catherine Street, Ottawa, ON 613.946.8682 | catherine.mckenna@parl.gc.ca /Catherine.McKenna

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But Causeway’s other social businesses, Krackers Katering and Cycle Salvation, were forced to temporarily shut down in March. Both the businesses have since reopened, with some minor changes. Hechtman said volunteer-run Cycle Salvation reopened in April and has done “quite well” since then due to an increased demand for refurbished bicycles and repairs, including from employees of Good Nature Groundskeeping. The business has taken a “walk-through window approach” to its operations in order to maintain physical distancing. Krackers Katering was no longer able to provide its regular catering services to private and public-sector events, making it the social enterprise hardest hit by COVID-19. Causeway was forced to search

for employment opportunities for clients previously employed at the catering company. As a result, Causeway teamed up with Parkdale Food Centre to allow a former client to work as a delivery driver three times a week. The City of Ottawa’s COVID-19 Social Service Relief Funding allowed Causeway to set up a food hamper program for clients, so that an added six Krackers Katering employees could create and deliver personalized food packages to 50 to 70 individuals a week. Krackers Katering officially reopened in August thanks to a partnership with the Parkdale Food Centre and their “Cooking for a Cause” program. The social enterprise’s clients are now preparing over 250 take-home meals a week for outreach workers to deliver to

people in need. In the future, Hechtman said that Causeway will be integrating its programs more effectively so that clients can be more easily connected to the services they require. And Causeway will also be expanding its network to partner with more organizations in Ottawa supporting similar clients. “Over the next few months, it will be an evolution of how we can best support the community, and we will look at different ideas to do that. We are better off doing that by collaborating with other agencies, so I’m seeing where there are opportunities to work together,” Hechtman said. Causeway Work Centre is located at 22 O'Meara St. To learn more about the organization and its programs, visit www.causewayworkcentre.org.

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to providing those with mental health conditions or addictions with a path towards self-employment or small business ownership, through a combination of business training, mentorship and low-interest microloans. Causeway’s community supports can also assist clients facing additional barriers to employment — such as mental health problems, addictions and those living in poverty — by referring them to additional supports. Causeway has a growing network of social enterprises: Small businesses that provide clients with skills training and a supportive work environment. Good Nature Groundskeeping was able to continue providing its professional lawn cutting, hedge trimming and garbage removal services throughout the pandemic.


COMMUNITY NEWS West End Kids celebrates 25 years and opens second store BY MAUREEN MCEWAN

October 2020 • 12

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or a quarter of a century, a Westboro family business has lived at 373 Richmond Rd. West End Kids, the local children’s clothing and outerwear store, opened its doors on Aug. 15, 1995. This summer, owners Sheba and Gordie Schmidt held a small, COVID-19 safe celebration. But the Schmidts are launching into their 25th year with a new adventure: West

End Kids is opening a second store this fall. “It’s exciting!” Sheba said. “I worked out a really good lease, so I’m comfortable with it, if everything falls into place.” The second store is, quite literally, a stone’s throw away from the original location. The newly rented space is at 376 Madison Ave., directly behind the main store. Sheba estimates that it is over 3,000 square feet which allows them to

have a duplicate store, warehouse, and maybe even a “little office.” In early 2020, Sheba said the business was in its “best year in 25 years.” They decided to expand to the second location and signed the new lease at the end of January. “It’s sort of long overdue. We just couldn’t afford it,” Sheba said about the new store. “And, in February, it looked like we were in our best year ever — business was fantastic. And then the

bottom just [dropped]. I mean, everybody has their story, right?” COVID-19’s spread quickly led to shutdowns in the spring. West End Kids closed its doors along with many other Ontario businesses on March 15. The staff was laid off, leaving only managers Benjamin (Sheba and Gordie’s son) and Jackie to run their online store. They reopened in late May, but the last six months have been difficult for their team. Sheba said that there have also been permanent closures in Kitchissippi due to the pandemic. “It’s going to change Westboro,” she said about the recent closures. “But I do know that kids still have to play outside and I still know that I have a strong presence with a great reputation. So I’m being hopeful.”

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Shifting into fall with a special menu of programs With the launch of modified fall programs, people are back at Dovercourt Recreation Centre and the staff is thrilled to provide the community with fitness, swim and recreation opportunities once again. “While we are still far from normal in our operations, we are excited to have activities and classes starting again this fall,” Executive Director John Rapp stated. Every day, staff greet the Breakfast Club members and afterschool kids and supervise them in safe, creative activities. With the Breakfast Club, parents know that their children will get to school safely, and kids get a healthy meal and fresh air before school. For those at Broadview Ave. Public School, the walking-school-bus has been a great way to start the day. For those in the afterschool program, parents get a late pick up (6 p.m.), and kids get a friendly greeting after school, a healthy

snack provided by the Dovercourt café and lots of fun activities in small groups with experienced leaders. Fitness clients are enjoying the return of inperson classes with their favourite instructors and fellow participants. To maintain safe distance, every participant has a taped square to stand inside. Equipment is limited to hand weights and they are cleaned thoroughly after each class. There’s lots of variety to choose from, including group fitness, aquafitness and spin classes (for Fit Pass holders), as well as specialty programs like Aquafitness, TRX, pilates, weight classes and more. Daily online fitness classes allow clients to work out from home and stay fit with the enthusiastic Dovercourt instructors. Swim lessons are well underway. There are clear safety procedures and well-marked zones in the pool. Dovercourt’s top-notch instructor team has taken the new protocols

and teaching methods in stride. Two six-week session blocks are available; the next session begins in November and registration opens Oct. 20. Aquatic leadership programs — like National Lifeguard and Swim Instructor — have adapted to new instruction methods, with both in-person and online delivery, to train the next generation of instructors and lifeguards. Recreational drop-in swims are another way to enjoy the indoor pool. While some pool features are off-limits (slide, tarzan rope, sauna and hot tub), the warm water is welcoming. For safe spacing, numbers are limited and swims are pre-booked and prepaid for easy check-in. There is a new special menu of monthlong recreation programs this fall — you can sample without making a long commitment. These programs can provide a nice break for families that have decided to keep kids home from school or in learning pods. October will feature a variety of programs — running in convenient four-week long blocks — including karate, multi-sport and basketball. As well, there are visual arts programs, including

online watercolour and in-person pottery classes. The Bluesfest School of Music and Art (BSOMA) will be opening again, offering limited private lessons, and group lessons including Ukulele and Rock University. And the Dovercourt Dance School has returned, with classes taught by popular instructor Barbara Diaz. It’s truly a fall session like no other, but the Dovercourt team is grateful to welcome its community again.

411 DOVERCOURT AVE. dovercourt.org 613.798.8950 @DovercourtRecreation @Dovercourt411 @dovercourt 411


offering the same products in each location. With COVID-19 safety measures, Gordie anticipates that the second store can have up to four families in the space at a time, while the original store can accommodate three families at a time. “So, that way we can sort of handle the same kind of traffic we usually do and, if people make appointments, it will make it so much easier,” he said. The business has set up its appointment schedule mobile app to encourage customers to book their shopping times in advance. In the new year, Sheba said they might review their stock and designate one location for footwear and accessories, or something similar, but they will see how things progress with the duplicate store. Continues on page 26

Owners Gordie and Sheba Schmidt stand outside of West End Kids on Sept. 25. PHOTO BY MAUREEN MCEWAN.

COVID-19 has highlighted the challenges facing Ottawa’s vulnerable populations, and the vital role Ottawa West Community Support plays in helping them safely remain in their homes and own communities.

Our services are provided by our kind and dedicated staff and volunteers. They make our programs possible and we are so grateful for their work and compassion. #StandUp4CommunitySupport #CSM2020

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“Without it [the second store], we cannot succeed,” Gordie added. “There’s not even a chance because the store normally does in the hundreds of thousands of dollars [in revenue] over the next couple of months and, physically, we can’t get the people in the store to do that kind of volume. So, hopefully, with this [second store], we’ll be able to. Now we just need the community support — that’s all we need.” They had the keys to the new space on Sept. 15 and they’ve planned their soft launch for early October. The second store will open as they head into their busiest season — Sheba said it is typically wall-to-wall with customers for the next few months. For the busy season, the store will act as a duplicate,


EARLY DAYS

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24-hours and 10-cent burgers: A step back in time to a classic diner on Wellington Street West

October 2020 • 14

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or forty years, one of the most popular and unique restaurants in the city was located right here in Kitchissippi, during the vintage era of Wellington Street West. Taking on almost legendary status among long-time residents, Jimmy’s

Restaurant — and “The Top Hat,” as it was originally known — was a neighbourhood institution. Once calling itself the “Community Centre of the West End,” this restaurant was a favourite spot for a wide variety of clientele, particularly after it became one of the first 24-hour diners in the city (certainly the first in the west end).

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The Price of Dirt By Dean Caillier, Sales Representive with Engel & Völkers Ottawa Central, Brokerage What the heck is going on with real estate these days? Homes are selling for over asking price and, in many cases, not even for the house itself. Many buyers are purchasing the property for the dirt: Yes, the land itself. I made a living for decades designing and renovating homes. Additions were my specialty, where growing families were looking to add on a family room, a bedroom, a second storey, etc. With the cost of renovating constantly going up, combined with the existing condition of a home being costly to repair, many homes are being demolished to make way for a new one where the owner can design and finish it as they wish. In some cases, depending on the size of property and zoning, the property can be subdivided into two or even three lots. I, myself, live in a 1920’s era home in the Wellington Village neighborhood of the Kitchissippi Ward. Over the last 28 years, we have added on a family room, renovated the kitchen twice, changed

the bathrooms, landscaped and on and on. The modest homes on either side of me have been replaced with new larger homes that arguably better meet the requirements of today’s family. Even with all the renovating we have done to our home, it still has its issues. Don’t get me wrong: I love my home. The covered porch, the stained glass front door, plaster crown moulding, and more reflect the 1921-era home that we were attracted to when we purchased the property almost three decades ago. Having said that, when the day does come that we sell our home, I wont be surprised if it is demolished to make way for a new one that is more on trend with todays way of living. The question is: Will a buyer pay for just the dirt, or the house, too? If you’re thinking of selling, speak to a Realtor to better understand where the value is, so you can make an informed decision when it is time to make that move. dean.caillier@evrealestate.com 613-299-6243 deancaillier.com

The building at the corner of Clarendon Avenue remains standing today as the home of Arc of Life (1318 Wellington St. W.) and Wine Rack (1320 Wellington St. W.). Believe it or not, its construction back in 1936 had a direct effect on the design of Wellington Street. Real estate investor Charles Kert acquired the lot, but would only build if the city agreed to eliminate the mandatory 20-foot setbacks. After much debate, a compromise was reached. The city cut the setback down to 10 feet, but the discussion then prompted the city to widen Wellington Street the extra 10 feet, giving it its present size. The firm of Mahoney and Rich began excavation on Oct. 5, 1936, for the construction of a one-storey brick and cinder block building to house two stores, at a cost of $12,000. Kert announced that construction would be rushed; the stores would be ready in six weeks to house a “chain store and a druggist.” Sure enough, on Dec. 11, a new Dominion grocery store opened for customers in the east half of the building (1318 Wellington St. W.). In the west half of the building (1320 Wellington St. W.), the proposed drug store fell through and the new shop actually sat vacant for nearly three years. Michael Montagano opened a confectionary shop there in early 1940, but it lasted barely a year, closing by the spring of 1941. That paved the way for the opening of the Top Hat Grill and Soda Bar, which would become one of west Ottawa’s popular spots for the next two decades. Operated initially by Alma Bilodeau (1941-1944) and George Hayes (1945-1948), it was actually the Weeks family that built

A Top Hat ad that ran in The Ottawa Journal on Aug. 23, 1946. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE OTTAWA JOURNAL.

the business up and ran it the longest, and with whom the Top Hat is most associated historically. For retired high school principal Michael Weeks, the memories of his parent’s business are still strong. He remembers growing up around the restaurant, which was his mother’s idea. For Lebanese immigrants in Ottawa, opening a restaurant was a popular endeavour, and so Helen Weeks encouraged her husband Jack to take over the Top Hat after leaving gruelling mining work in Sudbury behind. “Mom would open it at 6 a.m. every day, and Dad would close it, staying until midnight or even later,” Michael said. “I joined Mom, and would help serve. Even at seven or eight-years-old I would go and open the store sometimes by myself, start serving the truckers and early risers. Breakfast was an easy thing to make,” he joked. His brother Ronald also worked many hours at the diner, though younger sister Pamela was too young to contribute. “Dad would arrive around noon, and Mom would stay until two, an overlap of just a few hours. It was a hard life,” Michael said. “I never appreciated until later just what kind of an effort that took.” Continues on page 16


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EARLY DAYS

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A step back in time to a classic diner on Wellington Street West Continues from page 14 The restaurant did attract a difficult crowd in the evenings. As a young teen, Michael occasionally found himself a “target for every teen in the area with nothing better to do than create problems,” as some youths would come in and pick a fight for no particular reason. “Dad would pick them up physically and put them out the front door,” he added. The Top Hat was also a frequent target of petty thieves, the break-in reports frequent in the pages of the Citizen and the Journal during the era, with the front glass window being smashed in and money or cigarettes taken on the regular. Michael remembered jukeboxes when the craze first arrived (done in partnership with Regent Vending Machines of Ottawa) and also a large original shuffleboard game that his parents would occasionally place in the restaurant to keep the kids amused. “Entertaining the youth was important,” he noted. His parents even advertised using the “Community Centre of the West End” moniker. Burgers were the Top Hat’s main speciality (offered in 1947 as “still only 10 cents”), and they had acquired a reputation for their burgers, as well as its very popular soda fountain. “It was the era of milkshakes”, Michael added with a laugh. Top Hat also sold magazines, as well as cigarettes and papers, out of an eight-foot long cigar counter. For a time when the Weeks first took over, they operated a small bake shop out of the restaurant, selling cakes, pies and pastries. A renovation in 1953 led to the addition of air conditioning

and expanded seating, for a total of 78 seats. Waitresses wore uniforms, and were paid $25 weekly, plus meals. Eventually, Jack Weeks began to develop severe heart problems, so the difficult decision was made to sell the business in 1960. Sadly, Jack passed away only weeks after selling, at the young age of 51. In the fall of 1960, the Saikaley family took over and rebranded as Jimmy’s Restaurant. The restaurant had operated briefly at 1297 Wellington St. W. before moving into larger digs at 1320 Wellington St. W. Just as for the Top Hat, Wellington Street was then still a primary access road to downtown from the suburbs (the Queensway and Parkway were still to come), so morning commuter and trucker traffic kept the diner busy. A large L-shaped neon sign lit up the Wellington Street streetscape, capturing eyes from both directions. The night-time crowd gave Jimmy’s its true identity, as one of Ottawa’s first, rare 24-hour restaurants. Wayne Rodney has a memory of the west end like no other, and certainly recalls Jimmy’s and its reputation. Like others I spoke with, he recalled Jimmy’s as the place everyone would go after the bars in Gatineau closed at 3 a.m., particularly the Hotel Chaudiere. “You’d always see Jimmy sleeping at the counter. Of course, he was there probably twenty-four hours a day,” Wayne only half-joked. “He probably did most of his business at night.” Jimmy’s was the type of place where there are probably a thousand good stories, most of them now just anecdotes of a

Jimmy and Jane Saikaley sitting at a booth at Jimmy’s Restaurant. PHOTO COURTESY OF TONY SAIKALEY.

An interior shot of Jimmy’s Restaurant featured in The Ottawa Citizen on Aug. 8, 1978. PHOTO COURTESY OF THE OTTAWA CITIZEN.

long-lost era. Many wouldn’t be printable anyways. It was the place where the clientele changed many times throughout the day. The morning breakfast crowd gave way to housewives and friends meeting during

the day, the regulars in for lunch or a coffee, families and couples for dinner. In the evening, Fisher Park students would roll in, replaced by bored taxi cab drivers and policemen, finally giving way to the bar crowd.


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the TV,” the profile stated. By that time, it had become a place of nostalgia in an era where history was best left in the past. The city was growing fast, and fast food, donut shops and coffee shops were the venue of choice for kids, families and bar-hoppers alike, leaving greasy spoon diners in their wake. By the end of 1980, Jimmy’s closed, and the space has cycled through as a workwear shop, several bakeries, a children’s shop and the original Thyme & Again location (1994-2001). The east half of the building was the original Hillary’s Cleaners (19501954), Vail’s Clean-O-Mat and John G. Roy’s upholstery, later a used book store and a post office, among others. Jimmy’s and the Top Hat: Classic memories from another era in the alwaysinteresting history of Wellington Street West.

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Like at the Top Hat, some evenings could get rough. There are several stories shared by long-time residents, and brought alive through old newspaper pages of fights and robberies, with gun-shot blasts and manhunts down the side streets of Wellington Village. By the late 1970s, the restaurant had reached its end. An Ottawa Citizen profile described it as “a late-night oasis not only for the down-and-out, but for street roamers too restless to sleep or too excited to end the day.” “The vinyl seats are a little shabby, the formica tables are chipped in places and there’s a seat missing from the long line of stools at the counter. But the jukebox selector at each booth offers a choice of current hits, the coffee’s on tap and if you don’t feel like talking, you can stare out the window at the passing traffic or plug into


COMMUNITY NEWS Local artist spreads joy throughout Kitchissippi BY HOLLIE GRACE JAMES

October 2020 • 18

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n the face of adversity, Paul Knoll’s motto is to keep on going. After retiring from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation in 2016, the 48 year-old Kitchissippi resident has been steadily building accolades in his art career. In addition to a successful local show two years ago, a variety of his murals now adorn the neighbourhood. While he enjoys the leisure of retirement very much, Knoll prefers to keep himself busy with volunteering and art. He spent a decade as one of the top volunteers for the now defunct, annual summer event Westfest. In May 2018, the Dovercourt Recreation Centre featured his acrylic paintings, which can be described as folk-style, at a well-attended vernissage. Dovercourt then requested that he paint a mural on the centre’s outdoor pool, which now features his signature bright colours in an uplifting landscape. Word of Knoll’s talent is starting to spread. Recently, a Westboro neighbour, Nick Aplin, commissioned a mural on his Byron Avenue home’s garage. “He’s a really lovely man who invites Paul for coffee on a weekly basis. He’s such a sweet man and he wanted Paul to do this project for him,” said Helen Ries, Knoll’s sister. Knoll’s style radiates positivity and his newest artwork doesn’t stray from that, featuring a rainbow, bumblebee and sunflowers. Although the three-week project came to a halt when Knoll dislocated a hip, he’s currently on the mend, and he looks forward to finalizing the work in the near future. Knoll spent his childhood in Wellington West on Caroline Avenue, later moving to the Westboro area in 1994. Ries lived for some time in Toronto, but she’s recently relocated to the neighbourhood to live with Knoll after their parents passed. While he admits that a diagnosis of Down syndrome hasn’t made his life easy, Knoll’s surrounded by a

Paul Knoll sits in front of his colourful artwork in Westboro. PHOTO BY RON KOK, COURTESY HELEN RIES.

community that embraces difference, instead of pathologizing it. Ries explains that her brother was always an artistic person and that there’s emotion behind each of his works. “Certainly, how he’s feeling, and how he sees the world comes out in his art,” said Ries. “[There are] a lot of bright colours and he’s very positive, so his paintings [reflect that].” But, the COVID-19 pandemic has been especially difficult for Knoll. “I’m sick and tired of it!” he said. “It’s pretty hard for everybody in the whole neighbourhood out there, and I don’t know what’s going on.” Knoll relies on the federally incorporated non-profit LiveWorkPlay, who support his independent lifestyle, so it’s been a struggle without them during the pandemic. But

Ries insists that he’s been spending a lot of time helping around the house by cooking, keeping things tidy and doing laundry. He’s also been studying poetry through the local program Dragonfly, which is devoted to learners with Down syndrome. As an active member of the community, you may have spotted Knoll at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) bike ride, Art in the Park or the Farmers’ Market, although he worries about the cancellation, and unknown fate, of such local events. These days, Knoll is receiving an abundance of positive feedback on Facebook and admits that he’s on his way to a highdemand status. There are no big plans for the time being — Knoll simply hopes to continue pursuing the many things that bring him so much joy.

Paul Knoll paints a commissioned mural on a garage in Westboro. PHOTO BY RON KOK, COURTESY HELEN RIES.


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Transitions & New Traditions “How has business been?” This question has been part of almost every interaction I share with neighbourhood business employees while running my errands (with my hands sometimes smelling like vodka at 9am after sanitizing upon entry of their establishments). For the majority of their responses, I hear comments on how it’s different, they’re making it work, sometimes it’s been as busy as ever, and other times you can hear the uncertainty of the new trials & tribulations we are sorting through and adapting to together in their tone. But the consistent observation is how grateful they are - whether for their job, or their health, or for the unwavering support of the community. Westboro - you know how to show up. And as we slip into sweater weather, those layers come with reverence for transitions and we give thanks this time every year. I’m sure I’m not alone in acknowledging the immense gratitude I have for the neighbours who have been there for us the past half of year - who have showed up to provide for our daily needs. Who have pivoted more times that they can count to serve our masked smiles. I will be raising a glass to them and you as Thanksgiving weekend rolls around. October in Westboro village brings with it Wickedly Westboro! This tradition has transitioned from a trick-or-treating event to be a scavenger-huntmeets-I-Spy adventure for families. Spy it - snap it share on social and be entered to win a spooky basket of goodies! Too cute to spook. Our restaurant partners honour the farmer harvests and abundant in-season ingredients and this can be

seen on their creative menus. Many food purveyors are offering at-home meal options - perhaps they could even be a part of your Thanksgiving feast to help lighten the dish loads. Decor and cozy layers find inspiration online or in-store along Richmond Road. If you haven’t recently - share a little extra gratitude to the folk who serve you the next errand you run in your neighbourhood and help spread the word about the inspiration and fuel they give you! A little love goes a long way. Here’s to transitions and new traditions together.

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Tara Porter Marketing Director of Pure Kitchen and Westboro resident


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WALL SPACE GALLERY Autumn Exhibitions at WALL SPACE GALLERY October 8-31 Join us in celebrating two shows coming to the gallery. Ottawa-based, multidisciplinary artist Nathalie Grice presents OMENS, an ornithological installation experience. Gathering, a four-artist group show with Alex Chowaniec, Vanessa McKernan, Manny Trinh, and Stanley Wany, examines our interconnectivity through environmental stewardship, dreams and the subconscious, and how we gather, emotionally and physically. Work can be viewed in person at the gallery without appointment. Free parking behind gallery via Danforth Avenue. Custom framing available by appointment. 358 Richmond Rd • 613-729-0003 WALLSPACEGALLERY.CA JUICE DUDEZ **FALL BRUNCH SPECIAL** Get a Free Pumpkin spice Latte when you order any Crepe or a waffle with any Fresh Juice! The offer is available everyday from 11:30 am to 2 pm for a limited time period. 91A Richmond Road 613-725-1223

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Stay tuned to our social media and westborovillage.com for full details -- coming soon!

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WICKEDLY WESTBORO 2020 Halloween is going to look quite different this year, but we still plan to have a ton of fun! From October 16 to November 1st, families can enjoy a spooky scavenger game for Wickedly Westboro! We'll be coordinating a safe, outdoor hunt for the kids. Find our five freaky friends to win an amazing Halloween basket from the shops of Westboro Village.


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1: Abigail Sanderson, from Foster Family Farm, stands at the farm’s festive booth in late September. 2: Autumn colours as seen across the river from a path between Woodroffe Avenue and Westboro Beach. 3: Tony McCadden and Norah Joy from Barkley’s Orchard at a market during the last weekend of September. 4: Leaves fall across the ward, signalling the season change. 5: It’s all about apples at Hall’s Apple Market stand at the Westboro market.

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COMMUNITY NEWS Westboro Legion’s oldest, newest member Ida Crocker celebrates 100th birthday

October 2020 • 24

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BY JUDITH VAN BERKOM

T

he first 100 years are the easiest. On June 29, World War II veteran and Westboro Legion Branch 480 member Ida Crocker celebrated her 100th birthday. She said her longevity is a result of having a lot of friends and because she liked everybody. “I had healthy parents,” Ida said. “I was the only one in the family that lived so long. My oldest brother lived to 91 years of age and we thought he was quite something at 91.” Ida grew up in Thunder Bay with six siblings. She studied nursing, graduating in 1941 and worked in a military hospital in Hamilton to gain experience before going overseas. During World War II, Ida served as a nursing sister with the Royal Canadian Army Medical Corps. Ida served in England for a few months and was then sent to Italy for approximately two years. “I got to like the Italian people. They’re the warmest people,” she said. “We had maids to do our laundry and they did our rooms during the day. We stayed in a 10-storey apartment building that was fairly new but had no elevators. The first day I was there, I left my watch up in my room. I had to walk all the way up again. I only forgot it once!” “I got close to the people I worked with — we became good friends,” she said. “I enjoyed meeting everyone I met. I never met anyone that bothered me. I think most people felt the same way [during the war].” Ida worked in three different hospitals in England, then Italy and later in England again (when the war was over in Italy but still on in England). It was in Italy, in the city of Florence, where Ida met her husband, C.R. “Bob” Crocker, a Canadian soldier.

Ida Crocker’s official army photo with the Canadian military. PHOTO COURTESY OF BARBARA REEVES

“He wasn’t too far away but they were in quite a big battle while I was there. It was quite scary,” she said. They were posted back to England and married there. At the end of 1945, when they returned to Canada, they moved to New Brunswick, her husband’s home province. Ida was 25 at the time. “Coming from Thunder Bay, New Brunswick was almost as far as Italy,” she said. “New Brunswick turned out to be the most wonderful province after I met all the people there that [my husband] knew,” she added. “People from the west are the same. You feel you know them right away.” After the war, Ida’s husband didn’t want her to work as a nurse. They had a nice, family life but they only lived in New Brunswick for a year. He worked for the National Research Council of Canada and was asked to come back to Ottawa.

WWII Veteran Ida Crocker pictured at her 99th birthday party in 2019. This June, Ida celebrated her 100th birthday in Ottawa. PHOTO COURTESY OF BARBARA REEVES. “He didn’t tell me because he knew I liked New Brunswick so much. I cried when we left,” she said. “He was happy to come back to his old job here (Ottawa). In New Brunswick, he had to travel a lot to PEI and was leaving home all the time. Our daughter was born in New Brunswick just before we left, the only one born in NB. We had three daughters and one son — that kept me going.” In the late 1970s-early 1980s, Ida and her husband became involved with the Canadian Legion, along with their next-door neighbours. They ended up leaving after

a few months due to the smoking in those days. Ida didn’t rejoin the Legion until a year ago, making her the oldest, newest member. Doris Jenkins, her neighbour across the hall at the Perley Rideau Veterans’ Home, encouraged her to join. Doris was a WWII veteran and longtime Westboro Legion member. Ida said she’s enjoying her current living situation at the Perley. “I’m very comfortable here. It’s the best place to go when you’re old,” she said. “People are very nice.”


Justine Bell School Trustee

Zone 10 Somerset/Kitchissippi

Elizabeth was buried at Beechwood Cemetery along with her brother, Robert, who died a year after from a massive heart attack. “They were very close and thought the world of each other,” Ida said. “I think he died of heartache.” But after 100 years, Ida describes her life as happy. Her eldest daughter, Barbara, lives in Osoyoos, B.C. and her other daughter, Margaret, lives in Kenora, ON. Ida has five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren and, over the century, she believes that she experienced the “best part.” “I think I had the best part of the world, better than anyone here, now. The only bad part was overseas during the war. It was bad watching people die — always sad,” she said. “All the same, I had the best part of the world, I think, than anyone alive now. Everything was good.”

It takes a community Justine.Bell@ocdsb.ca @justinegbell

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Looking back, Ida’s long life hasn’t been without its hardships. In 1999, Ida lost her husband, Bob. “My husband died around the same time I developed macular degeneration. He used to read to me every morning – The Citizen or The Journal,” she said. “I’d love to have someone in here. My dream was to own a house and have someone come and stay with me, and read to me. I knew I’d be a long liver.” A few years later, one of her daughters, Elizabeth, who worked in Australia as a physiotherapist for 30 years, returned to Ottawa after she developed cancer. “[My daughter] was ill for three or four years. The doctor in Australia didn’t believe she was sick, thought it was stress,” she said. “I enjoyed having her here almost a year before she died. I adored having her with me in my condo.”

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COMMUNITY NEWS

West End Kids celebrates 25 years

October 2020 • 26

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Continues from page 13

A photo taken just before West End Kids opened in 1995. PHOTO COURTESY OF SHEBA SCHMIDT.

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HOW IT ALL BEGAN IN WESTBORO Their original store’s lease was signed in the mid-1990s, a very different time in the Village. “It was a main thoroughfare [Richmond Road] and Gordie felt that this would be a good location,” Sheba said. “It was $10 a square foot.” Sheba had just turned 40 and they had a seven-year-old son, Benjamin. Two years earlier, Sheba and Gordie had retired from their careers in sales for Esprit — the American-European clothing company — and travelled globally before calling Ottawa home. In 1995, Sheba decided to draw on her professional experience and open West End Kids in Westboro. “So I opened up the store in 1995 and I cried for five years,” she said, laughing. “I could not believe [it]. You know, selling to a retailer and then becoming a retailer, it’s two different things!” Initially, Gordie had taken on a financial role when the business started up. Sheba said he became more hands-on with the business as they headed into year six and signed another lease. Around that time, they decided to “take the plunge” into outerwear. Their first order of snowsuits (50 of them, Sheba estimates) sold out in a couple of weeks. The demand for winter wear continually rose. “The store kept evolving and evolving and the outerwear, I could sell it to the last piece,” Sheba said. For the last fifteen years, West End Kids has been more of an outerwear retailer, Sheba said. Some of the brands they carry include Columbia, Helly Hansen, The North Face, Sorel and more. And the local store has built a strong customer base across the country, shipping to remote spots like Rankin

Inlet, Nunavut, and other northern communities. From the beginning, Sheba said the store’s philosophy has been primarily about “knowledge” and not about driving sales. Their staff works with customers with diverse needs to provide them with the right information and to help them find the right products. The store has also been online since the early 2000s, when Sheba wanted to look into retail options and met with Industrial Media, a local company. “They put together a custom website for me,” Sheba said. “So I’ve had [an] online presence since 2007.” In 2011, Benjamin officially joined the business and now manages West End Kids. Sheba said Ben also works as an interactive multimedia developer, so he was “really instrumental” in developing the online store. Three years later, West End Kids moved its business over to Shopify. Sheba said that it “became a beautiful story” as their partnership yielded terrific sales results — the company remains a Shopify merchant, both POS and online. After 25 years, Sheba said that Westboro is a great place to be as a business owner. “I love the business community. I’ve been on the board (BIA) for years,” she said. “And I love the people.” Despite all the challenges, she also believes in the community support for small businesses in Canada. “I think there’s going to be a resurgence of small business,” she said. “I can’t speak for anyone else but with Canadians, they want to support local,” she added. “[In] this type of industry, we’re the crux of the economy: minimum wage people that work.” West End Kids is set to open its second store in early October. Visit www. westendkids.ca to learn more.


COUNCILLOR’S CORNER Voting in favour of proposals for higher-density residential zones around downtown core SUBMITTED BY JEFF LEIPER, KITCHISSIPPI WARD COUNCILLOR

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opened another phase of consultations for the new Transportation Master Plan. However you want to get around the city, your input is necessary to ensure that we’re moving in the right direction when we craft our transportation plans. The current questionnaire is open until Oct. 23; you can find it and more information about the project at engage.ottawa.ca/transportation-masterplan. Finally, I know that our current case numbers are concerning. The best way to stay up to date on the COVID-19 situation in Ottawa is to visit the Ottawa Public Health website. They are leading our approach to this pandemic and have created a host of excellent resources. Stay safe, Kitchissippi.

The first month back at school: It takes a community

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this time of uncertainty, what continues to be important is creating a culture of caring, social responsibility and innovation — our ultimate objective at the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board (OCDSB). Over the past month, we have learned that in order to do so, it takes a community. It also takes some governing and policy decisions by your trustees on the board. So, what did we discuss this September? Some of the issues included: teacher shortages; class sizes; outbreak protocol; whether it should be mandatory for students from Kindergarten to Grade 3 to wear masks;

school bus route cancellations; special education support; encouraging parent involvement in school councils; cleaning protocol and ventilation; the audit plan; collective agreements; the draft Indigenous, Human Rights and Equity Roadmap; a review looking into police presence in schools; advocating to the province; and effectively communicating and building trust within our community. In addition to the nine board and committee meetings that I attended last month, I am working hard behind the scenes. My positions are, and will always be, evidence-based. Education is a right; we must do all we can to keep schools open and safe for all. It takes a community.

27 • October 2020

e made it through September! In this past month, students, educators, families: we have all learned so much. We now speak a new language and have new behaviours. We have learned about hygiene etiquette; keeping two metres’ distance (about six feet, or about one metre in schools); what socializing can and can’t look like in the time of COVID-19 (an especially hard lesson for children and teenagers); what type of mask feels most comfortable; how many students can be in a classroom; how to read

a high school timesheet, log on to school, make an appointment for a COVID-19 test; and so much more. For many, last month was also the first time that they reached out to their trustee or another elected official for help. Although we are now living, learning and engaging in new ways, some things haven’t changed. Many of us continue to tuck in our children at the end of the day and to do all we can to protect them. Through all of this change, educators have stepped up to lead, teaching us what is important as we form our new routines. In

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SUBMITTED BY JUSTINE BELL, OCDSB SCHOOL TRUSTEE FOR SOMERSET-KITCHISSIPPI

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the restrictions earlier than Nov. 2. On Holland Ave, I have received confirmation from city staff that the bike lanes that were put in place as a temporary detour during construction of Jackie Holzman Bridge could be made permanent. I plan to bring a notice of motion to the October Transportation Committee meeting to ask to keep these lanes, which will be voted on at the November meeting. Some minor changes to the configuration would be in order — moving the northbound bus stop and increasing the speed limit to 40 km/h among them — but, overall, I am pleased to be able to maintain this well-used cycling corridor. Speaking of transportation, the city has

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ctober is here and has brought big changes for many of us. As we all navigate our new normal, I want to thank everyone for continuing to show up for your neighbours during these tough times. Things are moving at full speed at City Hall, so read on to find out what’s happening. In mid-September, I voted in favour of proposals for higher-density residential zones around the downtown core that will allow greater intensification than previously, which would allow new buildings in residential fourth density (R4) zones to have an increased number of units. The intention behind this change is to create more low-rise residential rental

stock without relying on sprawl. We have asserted in this term of council that we are experiencing a climate crisis and a housing crisis — these two events are inextricably linked, and increasing the density allowed in R4 zones will help address these crises, along with a robust inclusionary zoning strategy. We need to create a Kitchissippi Ward that everyone can live in and enjoy. After discussing with city staff, I have determined to remove the local traffic only restrictions on Byron Avenue on Nov. 2. As I’ve mentioned in previous columns and newsletters, I fully expect to receive a request from residents in the area to make some form of these restrictions permanent. I will consider the request, but it will be subject to community consultation before a final decision is made. If snow removal operations require it, I will have to remove


NOVEMBER IS MAKE A WILL MONTH

When giving back is second nature

October 2020 • 28

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When revising their wills in 2014, Paul and Marilyn Koch decided to leave a legacy gift to the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. “The Heart Institute, without question, saved my life,” says Paul.

In 2014, Paul and Marilyn Koch on a journey to retrace a trip they took in 1964 through Canada and the US.

In 2009 life took a turn for the Koch’s, and this event played a large part in their decision to include a charitable gift in their will. Paul and Marilyn were out to dinner celebrating their wedding anniversary. When they got home, Paul wasn’t feeling

well. His arm began to tingle and it became clear that this might be the warning signs of a heart attack. They headed immediately to the closest emergency room and as they neared the Ottawa Hospital, Paul had a heart attack. Physically fit and a past marathon runner, he ran out of the car and into the ER exclaiming, “I think I’m having a heart attack!” Within minutes he was transferred to the Heart Institute, and on the operating table within an hour. Paul’s LAD artery was 100% blocked, a stent was inserted and he spent the next four days recovering. “Two weeks later I walked 18 holes of golf,” said Paul, in praise of the care he received. In many ways, Paul and Marilyn Koch have spent their lives giving back. Lifelong volunteers and fundraisers, they annually support some 20-25 organizations, locally and globally. “My father was very

active in the community and he encouraged me to be involved and give back – to give time and be as generous as I could.” In their retirement, Paul and Marilyn have enjoyed travelling and volunteering in their community – “it’s how we keep ourselves busy and feel like we’re making a contribution. We don’t know how we had time to work!” Since Paul’s heart attack, they’ve made annual gifts to the Heart Institute. A legacy gift seemed like a natural next step. “I owe a lot to the Heart Institute. We’ve been so blessed, and we’re still on the green side of the grass, so…” The Kochs’ legacy will undoubtedly be one of service, and the Heart Institute is grateful to be a part of their giving plans. Paul and Marilyn will be guests on an upcoming Heart Institute Foundation webcast. See below for details.

You’re Invited to a conversation you don’t want to miss!

Do you have questions about estate planning and charitable giving? Join host Lianne Laing for this informal and interactive webcast with estate attorney Heather Austin Skaret, Selva Trebert-Sharman and special guests, Paul and Marilyn Koch. We’ll be answering your questions and talking about an estate plan that reflects the future you envision, supports your loved ones and the causes close to your heart. Be part of the conversation from the comfort of your own home, no masks required.

Monday, November 16, 2020 7:00 p.m. Online

Register for free today at foundation.ottawaheart.ca Would you like to know more? Contact Selva Trebert-Sharman 613.696.7251, strebert@ottawaheart.ca

40 Ruskin Street Ottawa, ON K1Y 4W7 ♥ 613.696.7030 Charitable registration number 14081 3452 RR0001

Lianne Laing, Executive Director Heart Institute Foundation

Heather Austin-Skaret, Co-Managing Partner Mann Lawyers LLP

Selva Trebert-Sharman Manager, Planned Giving Heart Institute Foundation


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government will roll out a paid sick day program through Employment Insurance, but we still don’t know the details: who n Sept. 22, in the midst of rising will qualify or how long people will wait COVID-19 positive cases, Ottawa for financial support. Public Health (OPH) invoked a selfAnd what else do we know about where isolation order for people demonstrating COVID-19 has hit hardest in Ottawa? symptoms of COVID-19. Those who don’t As Naini Cloutier from Somerset West comply could be fined $5,000 per day. Community Health Centre notes, 66 per This is a serious matter. For cent of COVID-19 cases are in lowComfortable, affordable, retirement living in the heart of Kitchissippi! months, we worked hard to income, racialized communities. flatten the curve, but now Folks in these communities Now accepting applications for our Retirement Floor we must ensure that are more likely to hold Call 613-722-6690 commitment holds fast. Dr. precarious jobs without Vera Etches and the OPH paid sick days, like Personal team are making this clear, Support Workers, cleaners and I’m thankful for their or grocery clerks. Our office leadership. These folks, Premier Ford is here for you with: Having said that, consider the says, are our “heroes,”Monthly but they Town Halls awful choice facing people right now don’t have his support when it matters. Canvasses without sick day protection at work. For This is unacceptable. We needCommunity paid sick Organizing months, we have insisted that Ontario days to stay home right now. Help Accessing Government Services CONN ST, BRITANNIA, $649,900 FRASER AV, WESTBORO, $1,125,000 create a paid sick day program so people Yes, I can already hear folks lamenting for 433 for 2722 4 BED / 2 BATH 3 BED / 2.5 BATH, 2-STOREY REAR NEW KITCHEN – ROOF TOP DECK ADDITION – COVETED LOCATION sale sale can stay home, and avoid spreading the COVID-19 spending to date. To those virus. people I say this: What’s the cost of losing P: 613-722-6414 109 Catherine St. / rue Catherine E: JHarden-CO@ndp.on.ca But as per his habit, Premier Ford people from marginalized communities Ottawa, ON K2P 0P4to MPP / Député provincial, www.joelharden.ca Ottawa Centre waited for the federal government to this awful pandemic? The cost of inaction act. The government he leads has done is far too high. nothing to expand sick day protection. If you need paid sick days, or if you In fact, his legacy was to strip away the know someone who does, tell them to minimal two paid sick days enacted by the contact us at jharden-qp@ndp.on.ca. We HARE AV, GLABAR PARK, $898,000 EDISON AV, WESTBORO, $1,099,800 for 934 for 513 4 BED / 2 BATH, OVERSIZED LOT 5 BED / 2.5 BATH previous government. will make sure their story is heard by the sale FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY sale NEWLY RENOVATED CLASSIC At the time of writing, the federal Ford government. SUBMITTED BY JOEL HARDEN, MPP OTTAWA CENTRE

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Dear residents, ver the past few months, we’ve experienced extremely challenging, unprecedented times. It has not been easy, but we’ve been able to get through this together, and work hard as a community to support each other through this pandemic. Sept. 23 was an important day; the Speech from the Throne was delivered. Here’s what our government is doing to support Canadians:

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2. Helping Canadians through the pandemic: The second foundation of our plan is to do whatever it takes to support Canadians and businesses through this crisis, as long as it lasts. • This is not the time for austerity. Ensuring Canadians are supported through this health crisis is the best thing we can do for the economy. • Canadians should not have to choose between their health and their job, just like Canadians should not have to take on debt that their government can shoulder better. • We will continue to help Canadians put food on the table, keep businesses open, create jobs, support women in the economy and ensure our fiscal sustainability.

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3. Building Back Better — a resiliency agenda for the middle class: The third foundation is to build back better to create a stronger, more resilient Canada. • We will keep strengthening the middle class and helping hardworking people to join it. • We will address gaps in our social @Kitchissi ppi

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1.Protecting Canadians from COVID-19: The first foundation of this plan is to fight the pandemic and save lives, by doing everything we can to protect Canadians. • Our priority is to look out for all Canadians, especially our most vulnerable. • Among other things, we will make sure Canadians will be able to get a vaccine once it is ready. • It will take all of us to keep Canadians safe and healthy, and to beat this virus.

SUBMITTED BY CATHERINE MCKENNA, MP OTTAWA CENTRE

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systems, invest in healthcare and build a stronger workforce. • We will also build long-term competitiveness through clean growth while fighting climate change. 4. The Canada we’re fighting for: The fourth foundation of this plan is to stand up for who we are as Canadians and defend our values. • Here in Canada, we take care of one another. • Together, there is more work to do to achieve progress on gender equality, walk the road to reconciliation and address systemic racism. • We will stand up for the values that define our country, from embracing our two official languages, celebrating the contributions of LGBTQ2 communities and welcoming newcomers and supporting family reunification. This pandemic is the most serious public health crisis Canada has ever faced. The last six months have revealed fundamental gaps in our society, and in societies around the world. For those who are already struggling — including parents, racialized Canadians, Indigenous peoples, young Canadians, seniors — the pandemic has made it more difficult. We must address these challenges of today, and prepare to face them in the future. Together, we will take bold action on health, the economy, equality and the environment to build a more resilient Canada for everyone. This is the time to remember who we are as Canadians. This is the opportunity to contain the global crisis and build back better, together. Stay strong, Catherine


COMMUNITY CALENDAR COVID-19 note: This page has been updated to reflect the developments in Kitchissippi during the pandemic.

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TUESDAYS - BYTOWN VOICES COMMUNITY CHOIR Although the choir is not able to prepare for a December Concert this fall, we will be meeting online each Tuesday evening from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (from Sept. 8 to Dec. 8). We will be learning some new music and maintaining our vocal chords in a relaxed environment, with plenty of musical and technological help. We will all be experiencing this new way of meeting and singing together and are happy to welcome new members, men and women, to join us. For more information, see our website at bytownvoices.com

FRIDAYS - CHASE THE ACE RAFFLE The not-for-profit Highland Park Lawn Bowling Club is raising funds to keep Westboro green with a widely enjoyed game of chance, Chase the Ace. Tickets are available at four community locations: the Clocktower and Barley Mow pubs, Whispers and the lawn bowling clubhouse (439 Golden Ave. at Byron). The game rules are posted at all four sites. Tickets cost $5 for five and are sold in multiples of five. A weekly draw will award 20 per cent of the week’s sales to the lucky ticket holder; 30 per cent will be added to the jackpot and 50 per cent will help the bowling club stay green. The jackpot increases weekly until the lucky winner draws the Ace of Spades and is

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OCT. 1 - HAMPTON IONA COMMUNITY GROUP AGM This year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held virtually via Zoom and Zoom telephone (long distance charges may apply to telephone use) due to COVID-19 restrictions. The event will take place on Oct. 1 at 7 p.m. All those who live within HICG Boundaries are eligible to attend and vote on HICG matters. Hampton Iona is located in the Westboro area of Ottawa. Jeff Leiper, councillor for Kitchissippi Ward, will be the guest speaker. In order to facilitate voting and the sharing of background documents for the meeting, community members must register on Eventbrite (via the HICG website). If you have questions, please send them to newsletter@hamptoniona.ca or access our webpage at hamptoniona.wordpress.com/

MONDAYS - ABOVE AND BEYOND TOASTMASTERS Every Monday at 6:45 p.m. (except holidays) Visit us online to enjoy time with members learning to communicate better while honing your leadership skills. This new reality has taught us much. We are learning new skills and still relating great stories. Join our family of joy by contacting Sharon at 45sharong@gmail.com or Lucille, our webmaster, at l_bouthillier@ yahoo.ca to receive the link.

awarded its entire contents. The maximum jackpot allowed under this licence is $30,000. At that point, a new raffle will commence. The current jackpot stands at $714.00 (Sept. 25). The weekly draw is held every Friday at 7 p.m. at the Clocktower (418 Richmond Rd.). For more information, please contact Harry Tremain at hmtremain1@gmail.com or visit highlandparklawnbowling.ca.

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Stay safe and healthy, Kitchissippi!

NOV. 7-10 - ALL SAINTS’ WESTBORO ANGLICAN CHURCH - A VERY VIRTUAL VILLAGE FAIR The annual event you know, now online! Purchase a selection of preserves, original crafts, curated book bundles, themed gift baskets, sweet and savoury food baskets, vintage linens, jewellery, knitting, and donated treasures and book your contactless pickup, all through our website. Call 613-725-9487 or visit allsaintswestboro.com for details.

WEDNESDAYS AND THURSDAYS - SHOUT SISTER! CHOIR There are 25 Chapters of Shout Sister! Choir in Ontario and we are constantly growing. Shout Sister! takes an unorthodox approach to choral singing. We learn from recorded tracks, so we require no reading of music. Our method is fresh and fun, and we are a warm and welcoming community. Shout Sister! has created a unique, enjoyable choir experience while singing from the comfort of your own home. We use Zoom to meet virtually every Wednesday afternoon (1-3 p.m.) and Thursday evening (7-9 p.m.). Everyone is welcome. We would love to have you join us! For information on joining, please contact members@shoutsisterchoir.ca or visit shoutsisterchoir.ca.

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Under provincial law, public events and social gatherings have been restricted in an effort to curb the spread of the virus. Please visit ontario.ca for more information. Most regular, local events have been cancelled or postponed. We encourage readers to check websites and social media pages to see if virtual or smallerscale events are being held instead.

OCT. 15 - WELLINGTON VILLAGE COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION AGM The Wellington Village Community Association is holding its 2020 Annual General Meeting on Oct. 15 from 7-9 p.m. The meeting will be open at 6:45 p.m. to allow community members time to join. This year, the meeting will be held virtually using Google Meet. Free preregistration is required. To register, visit wvca.ca.


WE’RE STILL IN THIS

Together!

October 2020 • 32

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These are difficult times. Thank you for helping us get through them with our spirits high.

Please keep supporting the merchants of Hintonburg and Wellington Village

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Kitchissippi Times October 2020  

Your Community Newspaper

Kitchissippi Times October 2020  

Your Community Newspaper

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