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EVEN THOUGH HOCKEY IS OVER, WE STILL HAVE PLENTY OF ICE TIME AVAILABLE. Sure the playoffs are over, and the next season starts in probably 17 days, but in the meantime what is a person to do? Ah yes, our patio with an icy beverage. Need we say more? Too bad, we will anyway. Open Mic Tuesdays are more fun than any craptacular TV show that might be on. And Wednesdays, get your mitts on a pound of chicken wings for only five bucks. Do the wing math. That equals “holy smokes cheap”. Next time you are thinking “wow, it’s lunch”, come check out our Lunch Buffet Monday through Friday 11:30 to 1:30. Karaoke Thursday is the only time we’ll let you sing “Convoy”. But only if you know all the words, not just “mumble mumble we gotta great big convoy something something the night”. See ya soon.

Century BAR & GRILL

9223 100th St . 250 263 6880 .

July 16, 2011 3pm - 7pm In the green space between Patch Java & the Shared Church (100 ST, Fort St John). Join us for a Green Concert, local artesans, freebies and a BBQ!



Events List

6 Editorial 8

25 Years and the Jig Ain’t Up Yet


It’s the Write Thing to Do


DiVerseCities II - Anthology of Writing


Series-ly Speaking - Sol Woytowich


Paddle for the Peace 6.0


Venue Map


Theatre School: Not Just for Actors


Paved With Good Intentions

HORNPIPERS OF THE MONTH: Shannon Butler, Randelle Lusk, Faye Anstey, Henry See, Sol Woytowich, Russell Eggleston, Pam Clemen, Sue Popesku, Jim Peltier, Danielle Yeoman, Tony Warriner, Joanne MacDonald, Tabitha Dyer, Bettyanne Hampton, Dave Tolley, Mark Bodner, Asia White, Margaret May, NENAS.


Let’s Put Our Music...


Fort St. John Dancer Wins at Provincials


Workforce Training at NENAS


Confessions of a Ukelele Addict

LORD OF THE ADS: Dave Tolley


Party in the Park: Why We Do It

SLIPJIG & DESIGN: Mark Bodner, Image Build |


New Birthing Centre Focuses on Patient

and Family Centered Care


A Grand Gesture

PUBLISHER & LUCKY CHARM: Russell Eggleston | | phone you can leave a message on (seriously, you will have to leave a message, better yet...text him): 250 261 8002 Russell Eggleston Creative Services | RR1 Site 16 Comp. 30 | Fort St. John, BC | V1J 4M6 The mission of Northern Groove is to get people from in and around our community involved, aware, and connected with all of the amazing things that are happening locally within the world of arts and culture in the North Peace. If you have an idea for an article, are planning an event, or have an idea or suggestion...hit us up with an email:

find us on facebook: “northern groove� we tweet. follow us. join our email list we have an answering machine 250.663.8851 our website is the source for what’s happening in town

Northern Groove Magazine is published monthly and is distributed free of charge in Fort St. John, BC, Canada. Northern Groove Magazine and assume no responsibility for the truth or accuracy in advertisements. Northern Groove Magazine attempts to accurately publish all editorial and advertising content, but errors and omissions may occur. Northern Groove Magazine disclaims any responsibility for such errors or omissions. Statements, opinions, and points of view expressed by the writers and advertisers are not necessarily those of the publisher. All rights reserved, except where expressly waived. The information in this publication is provided as a public service. Although we endeavour to ensure that the information is as current and accurate as possible, errors do occasionally occur. As some information is supplied by third parties and may be subject to change, we cannot always guarantee its accuracy. Where possible, readers should verify the information before acting on it.



                         R TION GEA PRESENTA . A it CH IRS . . d e S e LE n B TA TENTS . re if you LIGHTS . ...and mo SOUND .

10421 100th Street | 250.787.7591


Fri Jul 01 8:00 PM - Miss Quincy’s 4th Annual Canada Day Bash at Rolla Pub

Fri Jul 22 - Campfire Cowboy Hoedown at North Pine Fairgrounds

Sat Jul 02 - Jam at the Dam Music Festival 10801 Dudley Drive, Hudson’s Hope

Quickly and easily submit your event online: or email

Sat Jul 02 9:00 PM - Miss Quincy at Egan’s Pub

Fri Jul 22 - Sat Jul 23 Bushstock 2011 Bear Paw, Arras, BC Wed Jul 27 3:30 PM & 7:00 PM - Sesame Street Live at Encana Events Centre

JULY STUFF Every Monday 7:00 PM Open Mic Remedies Lounge First Tuesday of every month 7:00 PM Strawberry Jam Lido Theatre

Sun Jul 03 3:00 PM - Summer in Paris: a Red Karr Fashion Show Whole Wheat ‘n’ Honey Sun Jul 03 7:00 PM - Miss Quincy House Concert/Garden Party in Taylor Tue Jul 05 Stage North’s “Fuel” at Mainstage in Kamloops, BC Mainstage in Kamloops, BC Wed Jul 06 - Thu Jul 07 7:00 PM - Toby at Jackfish Dundees

Tue Aug 09 7:00 PM -Spread the Word Open Mic for Poets and Writers Retro Relics Thu Aug 18 6:00 PM Stage North Annual General Meeting and BBQ Old Fort Motors Building Fri Aug 19 - North Pine Fall Fair Mon Aug 22 - Stage North Summer Works Theatre School North Peace Cultural Centre Fri Aug 26 - Flower Show

Every Tuesday 8:00 PM Amateur Comedy Remedies Lounge

Thu Jul 07 7:00 PM - Chad Brownlee in Concert the Lido Theatre

Thu Sep 08 6:00 PM - FSJ Association for Community Living AGM and Awards Gala

Every Wednesday 8:30 PM Open Mic Egan’s Pub

Fri Jul 08 12:00 PM - Chodapalooza Overgrowth Cecil Lake


Every Thursday 7:30 PM Open Mic Century Bar & Grill Stonebridge Hotel Third Thursday of every month 6:00 PM All Ages Open Mic Patch Java Every Friday 8:00 PM Karaoke Remedies Lounge Every Sunday 3:00 PM Drumming in the Park Centennial Park Every Tuesday Drumming at North Peace Cultural Centre North Peace Cultural Centre Fri Jul 01 FSJ’eh Celebrations Centennial Park & NPSS Field Fri Jul 01 - Sun Jul 03 12th Annual Thunder Run Fri Jul 01 8:00 PM - Canada Day with The Suspicious Egan’s Pub

BEER T S E F SOON. IN JULY. presented by

Sat Jul 09 9:00 AM - Paddle for the Peace Tue Jul 12 7:00 PM - Spread the Word Open Mic for Poets and Writers Retro Relics Tue Jul 12 7:30 PM - The Tragically Hip with The Trews at Encana Events Centre Fri Jul 15 8:00 AM - Big Night Out featuring Darcy D. at Egan’s Pub Fri Jul 15 6:00 PM - Rock City Presents: Lonestar (BBQ and Concert) Rock City Nightclub Sat Jul 16 - Sam Easton with Johnn Perrotta, Yuk Yuk’s Comedy at Chances Pomeroy Hotel Sat Jul 16 - Sun Jul 17 Golf Fore The Cure Ladies Tournament at Lake Point Golf and Country Club Sat Jul 16 06:00 PM - War in the Peace Roller Derby Bout North Peace Arena Sun Jul 17 Garden Tour with Art in the Garden

Event times and dates are subject to change at any point, check with venue to ensure accuracy. For the most current list of things going on, please visit the Events Calendar online: While we’d like to fit everything in here, events are published on a first come basis, space permitting. Get your stuff on the website calendar first, and we’ll try to make darn sure it gets in here!

Best crowned FSJ’s compete to be Teams of 5 mov movie, then plan. the see not, If . plan the w ie, you kno If you’ve seen the

n > 250.261.6942

For information and registratio




Northgate Mall >> 5 - 10440 100th Street >> 250.261.6942

JULY 2011


SHOWING THE CREATIVE BONE editorial: mark bodner

For the next couple of months, the Northern Groove shmag (thanks Ponto for getting me hooked on the “shm”) and the shwebsite (and the “shw”) will be turning the pages on a number of local authors, writers, noodlers, and other folks who put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, chalk to board, or whatever it takes to get the voices out of their heads onto paper. That jazzes me, and thanks to Asia White’s digging about the area for writers to share their stories, I hope it jazzes you, too! As she says, there’s nothing like a nice summer breeze and a good book. I must admit, I’m a bookworm. Have been my entire life. Growing up in rural Manitoba, I was lucky enough to have access to a “book lending” program from the Winnipeg Public Library (cause there were only so many Rin Tin Tin and Hardy Boys books you could read at our school library). You’d pick a bunch of books from their catalog, and once a month they’d send you a bag of ‘em to read. Now, the awesome part of this was the

Anyone who says you can’t enjoy great food and good times at Charlie Lake...

Do esn t Kno w JACK!



Charlie Lake . 250.785.3233


July 6&7 - 7pm



fact you never really knew what you’d end up with. Ninety percent of the time, the books you ordered were out, so someone at the library would either choose another book by the same author or something in the same genre. For me, it was like Christmas every month when that bag of books arrived. I was quite happy if I received what I’d ordered, but more stoked to see what got substituted. Thanks to that book lending program I was exposed to authors and books I probably never would have picked up on my own. The purpose of that little backstory is to highlight “exposure”. Not the frostbite kind, or the trenchcoat kind. Through our Grooveworld, it is our strong desire that YOU have the chance to be exposed to something new, something you may not have considered, or even been aware existed. And for the local artists, it’s a chance to expose your work to potentially an entirely new audience that didn’t know you from Adam (or Eve. Or Alex Trebek). Just being involved in the Groove for the last couple years, I have been to more shows, and chatted with more people outside of my usual “social realm” or “things Mark is interested in” than I ever thought possible. Whether it be a musician, an actor, a writer, photographer, painter, potter or more....these are people I wouldn’t normally have bumped into without someone giving me the heads up or a shove in a different direction from “I was just going to stay home and watch a rerun of Doogie Howser” night. It’s tremendously cool to see the growth, the enthusiasm, and how wildly dynamic our local arts scene is. And I think to myself, “wow...we’ve barely scratched the surface”. There is an underlying current of creativity in the region, and every month that goes by, something new and interesting pops to the surface. At the Groove, it’s never a case of “well, what could we possibly talk about this month”, it’s more like “what can we possibly CHOOSE to talk about this month”. We take our job of filling these pages with neat things super-seriously. Your job, as always is to keep those ideas coming. And, of course, keep being creative!

Mondays 7-9pm Sacred Space 10671 101st Ave For more info: 250-787-9433


pam clemen

When Jo Watt moved to this small northern town she came, as did most of us, for a few years work. She was not aware then that choices and situations would keep her here. We are most grateful that this is the case. Twenty five years of graceful leaps, tapping feet, tears and triumph all began with an innocent question, ‘Would you teach a class or two?’ From a humble beginning for fun and friendship to the internationally recognized school of today, the Watt School of Irish Dance has seen many changes and many faces over the past twenty five years. While most had yet to hear about the craze that would be Irish dance, Jo and her students were entertaining audiences in Fort St John. From the days that saw dance mothers meeting in one another’s homes to learn to embroider small white shamrocks on new blue dresses for their daughters, to the elaborate costumes worn today, Jo and her dancers have risen to the challenges of time. Jo has propelled her students to greatness, both on and


off the stage. None of the students has ever wanted to disappoint her, not with a poor placing at a competition or a bad grade on a report card. She has seen them through many trials, both in and out of the studio. Flying hair pieces that fall to the stage in the middle of a number and then bounce about like small mice as the dance goes on around them; hard shoes that come free from a high click and land quite loudly on the table of the adjudicator, missing by inches, his fingers and coffee mug; having an entire bus load of girls descend upon a mall in Edmonton, complete with heads full of spiky curlers preparing for competi-

For one young lady, her dream of dancing began thirteen years ago, when she walked tentatively into her first dance class at the age of four. She watched in awe at the students who were jumping so high and making their feet move so fast. They smiled and joked with each other, and grimaced when a mistake was made. She remembers the teacher coming over to her with a smile and helping her with her dance shoes. The teacher explained that once she knew her 1-2-3’s

tion the next day; encouraging small girls with teary eyes to try one more step, because they can do it; convincing surly teenagers that the time is worth it, both for their studies and for their art; these are the things that Jo has come to see as everyday occurrences. As testament to her ability for aspiring greatness, six Watt School dancers have gone on to professional careers with Lord of the Dance and Celtic Fusion. Her dancers have shared the stage with the likes of the Irish Rovers, Jason McCoy, Natalie McMaster and Out of Alba. They have danced across BC, in Kamloops, Kelowna and Vancouver. Their talents have taken them to nearly every major centre in Canada and numerous venues in the US. They have performed in Brazil and Australia, and competed in England, Ireland and Scotland.

JULY 2011


and practised really hard, she would be dancing like the big girls. That small girl was Patricia Robertson. Patricia is now a ‘big girl’ and true to the word of her teacher so many years ago, Patricia is a champion. She has been the top ranking female in western Canada for the past three years, and has brought home medals and titles from many international competitions, most notably this year from the All-Ireland Championships in Killarney. She has learned many lessons from her time with Mrs. Watt. Always try your best; there is no such word as ‘quit’; looking out for members of your team is just as important as looking out for yourself; we’re all in it together, be it dance or life; nothing and no one is perfect, we are all learning as we grow. Patricia, like so many who have come before her and the many who will follow, knows that life is a dance. Evolving, changing and following the beat of the mo-

ment. Success is for those who can mold to the moment but have the fight to continue to move forward. Jo Watt has instilled many values in her students and has shown them that every situation has an element of wonder. All who have had the pleasure of interacting with her, either personally or through dance, will have come away with a new sense of understanding. Through dance, she has shown us what perseverance can accomplish. All because, twenty five years ago, she agreed to ‘teach a class or two’. Jo Watt, TCRG, is a registered member of the Western Canadian Irish Dance Teachers Association, the Irish Dance Teachers Association of North America, and the World Irish Dance CommissionAn Coimisiun Le Rinci Gaelacha.

Congratulations... Jo Watt on the 25th Anniversary of the Watt School of Irish Dance.


25 years


Thank you for having inspired and continuing to inspire dancers, helping them to realize their dreams and to become champions. All the best from the parents, past and present, of the Fort St. John Irish Dance Society.

4 appys

4 bellinis




4 beers



JUNE 30 - Nine Mile JULY 2 - Nine Mile Jam with the Band Nite



RESERVATIONS 250.787.0521 | 800.663.8312

9830 100th Ave ~ 250 261116961

IT’S THE WRITE THING TO DO words asia white

The breeze is warm, the grass is green, and there’s a sunbeam waiting with your name on it. What could be better than curling up in a hammock or lawnchair with a good book on a lazy summer afternoon? Not much, that’s what. This summer we’re going to introduce you to some local people who are passionate about the written word. Northern Groove will be featuring some of these supporters of literacy in the July and August issues as well as on our website, so there’s no excuse not to have something good to read this summer. Check out articles in this month’s mag from Henry See about the second edition of DiverseCities, a collection of stories, poems and more from a number of local writers; plus our peek at Sol Woytowich and his Tears of Omega series (in the making) of books.


FRESH DOUGH DAILY MAKES THE DIFFERENCE At Olio’s Pizzeria classic, old-world tradition, quality ingredients and our own unique recipes combine to create some of Fort St. John’s finest & tastiest pizzas, pastas, wraps, calzones, and salads.



250 262 3282


Retro Relics is pleased to announce DiVerseCities II, an anthology of local writing, will be available in mid-July. Retro Relics has been hosting monthly open mike sessions for writers since January 2009. We published the first anthology of local writing, DiVerseCities, in November of the same year. DiVerseCities II is our second collection. We put out a call to local writers this past winter and received over twenty submissions from across the Peace. A group of regulars at open mike was tasked with selecting the authors to be included in the new anthology. The goal was to be inclusive rather than exclusive in our selection. We wanted a wide variety of texts, from both established and new writers. There are many open mike venues for musicians in town. The music community is strong. It is harder for writers to find and meet an audience. Through the open mike and the DiVerseCities series, we are working to develop an audience for local writing.

JULY 2011

Why the emphasis on local writing? Most of the culture we consume comes from big urban centres in the south; from Toronto and Vancouver, to New York, LA, London and beyond. While there are common themes that we share due to the simple fact that we are all human, how much do we really share with urban and ghetto culture? Or the lives of the rich and famous? I think it is important for people to see themselves, their lives, their communities, in at least part of the culture. Many people write. They keep journals or write poems and stories. It is an important step to be able to share what you have written with others. This is another reason why we have the open mike and the anthology. It is important to get feedback in order to develop and mature as a writer. The next Spread the Word open mike is Tuesday, July 12 at 7pm at Retro Relics.



words sol woytowich

A lot of people ask me why I write. When I break it down to the defining points I realize that what I really wanted to do was escape the world around me. I had just come through a very painful part of my life in 2005 and I wanted to be in a world that was a better place, so I created it. The second defining reason I write is because I had come to a point where I found hope to strive past the hurt that life brings. I wanted to share that with others. I’m often asked what it takes to be a good writer and I simply say it takes passion and the ability to put your most inner thoughts on display. If you don’t put your heart and soul into your writing, the readers will see it. I don’t aspire to greatness, but I wish to see my story become great. Tears of Omega is something I never dreamt it could be. The world is something of pure imagination, where anything is possible. When I started writing, the initial story was nothing more than a short-story concept. As I wrote, I realized that there were seven main events in the life of the story, so once again the story evolved. With seven books now the projected length of the series, it has become an exciting journey for me as an author. Zeph was a creation that I could never have seen coming.


Within Zeph are all my fears, doubts and struggles. More than that is a quality I strive for, the essence of what a real hero is and should be. If my canvas is my laptop screen and my life experiences my palette, then my brush would be music. It’s the number one thing I tell people who are aspiring writers. I can’t write without music. It fuels me, it energizes me, and it sets the mood. I have handfuls of playlists and dozens of artists that I use for my writing. If I had to name several musical artists that have greatly contributed to my writing I would have to say Hans Zimmer, Steve Jablonsky and Linkin Park. The first book in the series, Piercing the Veil, follows the journey of a young man named Zeph who is at the point in his life where he is trying to discover who he is as a person and who he’s meant to be in the world. Along the way he comes face to face with a destiny that is more than he ever could have imagined. He soon learns that the path of a hero is not paved with bravery and grand tales but with struggles and self discovery. Dive into the world within the pages and discover something about yourself as well.



danielle yeoman

Join us for the 6th Annual Paddle for the Peace on July 9th, as the Peace Valley Environment Association (PVEA) and West Moberly First Nations raise awareness of the threat of Site C to the Peace River valley. Let B.C., Canada, and the rest of the world know how important it is to keep this ecologically valuable and historic waterway intact and free-flowing. Our celebration will begin at the Halfway River bridge on Highway 29 and finish on the east side of Highway 29 in the field of Bear Flat (Boon’s property). DO be prepared for any weather - bring sunscreen, a hat, rain gear, warm clothes and appropriate footwear in a waterproof bag or container. DO bring snacks, water and other necessities for a two hour paddle. DO bring lifejackets. DO leave any alcohol at home. This is a family event.

DO bring your camera and binoculars to record the day’s special events and to watch for wildlife. Do have a great time and enjoy yourself. DO invite your friends and family to take part. PANCAKE BREAKFAST & REGISTRATION: 9:00 - 11:00 a.m. STARTING POINT: Halfway River bridge on Highway 29 at noon TAKE OUT: East side of Highway 29 at Bear Flat (Ken and Arlene Boon’s property) FEES: $5.00 (children under 13 are free) ENTERTAINMENT AFTER THE PADDLE: Lindsay Pratt and the Ramblers 2:00 p.m. KEEP THE PEACE RIVER FLOWING FREE! For more information: Danielle Yeoman 250-785-8510 or visit

grea!t food


Mondays: Open Mic - 7pm | Tuesdays: Amateur Comedy - 8pm | Fridays: Karaoke - 8pm

JULY 2011

for what ale s you


10627 Alaska Road ~ 250 793 2979


100 ST

MAP OF FORT ST JOHN This map of Fort St. John is intended to help visitors and residents better find venues, restaurants, and our supporting businesses.

23 27

26 22 1 9








27 3

11 4

7 14

5 10


12 1

Systems By Trail 10421 100 St. | 250-787-7591


Kilnhouse Studio 10510 101 Ave. | 250-271-0066


Retro Relics | The Rabbit Hole 10140 100th Ave. | 250-787-8822


Whole Wheat ‘n’ Honey 10003 100 St. | 250-787-9866


North Peace Cultural Centre 10015 100th Ave. | 250-785-1992


Pomeroy Inn & Suites 9320 Alaska Road | 250-262-3030


Isabelle’s Boutique 9916 101 Ave. | 250-785-8070


Egan’s Pub 9404 Alaska Road | 250-263-9991


North Peace Savings and Credit Union 10344-100th St. | 250-787-0361

17 21 24


15 Jackfish Dundee’s 12984 Jackfish Frontage Road 250-785-3233 16 King Cool Refrigeration 10704 101 Ave. | 250-787-1688 17 FSJ Community Arts Council 10320 94th Ave. | 250-787-2781 18 Olio’s Pizza #1 9016 100th Ave. | 250-262-3282 19 Under the Yoga Tree 10104-101 Ave. | 250-263-5828

26 On the Rock Northgate M

10 Peace Gallery North 10015 100th Ave. | 250-785-1992

20 Serenity Spa Charlie Lake | 250-785-0263

27 Evangel Cha 10508 98 St.

11 Northern Environmental Action Team (NEAT) 10027-100 St. | 250-785-6328

21 Pomeroy Sport Centre 93rd Ave. & 96th St. | 250-787-8150

28 NENAS 10328-101st

22 Patch Java 10430 100th St. | 250-261-6648

29 Stonebridg 9223 100th S

12 Fort St. John Visitor Centre 9523 100th St. | 250-785-3033 13 Pomeroy Hotel | Tony Romas Chances Gaming Centre 11308 Alaska Road N. | 250-262-3233 14 JD Fitzgerald’s & Northern Grand Quality Inn 9830-100th Ave. | 250-261-6961

23 City of Fort St. John 10631 100th St. | 250-787-8150 24 Remedies Lounge 10627 Alaska Road | 250-793-2979 25 Family Friendly Initiative 10142 101 Ave. | 250-785-6021 x253

100 AVE




ks Pub & Nightclub Mall | 250-261-6942

apel . | 250-785-3386

t Ave. | 250-785-0887

ge Hotel | Century Bar & Grill St. | 250-263-6880

ve where lili music ves


Open Mic with Ryan Hennessey

live music fridays JULY 1 CANADA DAY The Suspicious JULY 2 Miss Quincy JULY 9 Adam Joseph & Andrew Bourcet JULY 22 Big Night Out with Darcy D. JULY 29 Kirby

250.263.9991 in the same place



Acting is not only for the stage. Store clerks, students, and company managers can all benefit from a few acting lessons. Acting hones skills in presentation, builds confidence and helps quick thinking in tight situations. Stage North will host an intensive week of theatre courses August 23-27 in Fort St. John. The theatre summer school will include courses in acting, directing, script analysis, lighting and sound and more. Pick and choose among the seven different courses or attend the entire series. Those 14 years old and older are welcome to register at the North Peace Cultural Centre. Among the instructors of the summer school are six theatre educators from Capilano University who together comprise the In the Flesh Theatre Company currently on a cross Canada Fringe Festival tour. In the Flesh Theatre will be performing in Montreal, Haileybury, Saskatoon, and Edmonton before they come to Fort St. John to facilitate the theatre summer school. Registrants will have the option of using some of their newly learned skills in a practicum with In the Flesh Theatre to stage BOX: or the Incredible Impact of the Totally Made Up on August 27. BOX is a story about a woman named Lee, who works hard at a job she doesn’t really want to do.


It isn’t until she is put up for a promotion that she discovers what she is truly capable of - what her imagination is capable of. This story is told through compelling physical work and vivid imagery. Surprising transformations reveal a world beyond the everyday- a world of mobsters, greasers, police officers, ninjas, pirates, businessmen and monsters; a world of possibilities. Graduates of the Acting for Stage and Screen Program from Capilano University in North Vancouver, have created this original piece using composition work,

viewpoints and collaborative writing sessions. They have been in the development process since July 2010 and have been working with the Technical Theatre Program, the Costuming Program, and Film Program graduates from Capilano. The show also features an original score by company members. Inspired by the idea of people reconnecting with their imaginations, they aim to tell a story that motivates audiences to follow their hearts, no matter who they are. The six members of In the Flesh Theatre and the instructors of the summer theatre school are: Tracy Varju from Coquitlam, BC is a graduate of the Acting for Stage and Screen Program. She has a jazz dance and musical theatre background, and has trained in Suzuki and Viewpoints with New York’s SITI Company. Ryan Bolton from Mitchosen, BC spent last summer in Fort St. John as an assistant coordinator for the Public Library’s Summer Reading Club for Kids. He was a volunteer karate instructor for five years and

taught professionally for two and is a volunteer swimming instructor. Alyssa Kostello has trained in Suzuki and Viewpoints with New York’s SITI Company and with artists from Zen Zen Zoa in Australia. She started her theatre training with ten years of Deep Water Theatre School at the Cobalt Classic Theatre. Christopher Fader is a member of the Coastal Sound Music Academy and was a choir member for ten years. He has trained with Andrew McIlroy, professional actor and director. Christopher was a teacher’s assistant for two years, and has a Fine and Performing Arts Certificate from Douglas College. Jennifer Hoar was born in Israel and raised in Keswick, Ontario. Before attending Capilano, she trained for six months at the Vancouver Film School. She is a stained glass artist and attended a two month class at Emily Carr Art Insititute for Visual Arts. Fort St. John’s own Chalene Scott, though born in Saskatchewan, was raised in BC which has forevermore confused her about her identity. She has devoted her life to theatre in the hopes that she may someday stumble across her true self. She has trained with Dean Paul Gibson, Andrew McIlroy, Fran Gebhard, Stephen Drover, David C. Jones, and many more Vancouver professionals. She directed Dog Sees God this past year and offers workshops in improv, script analysis, directing and auditioning for all ages. Wellknown to the theatre crowd in Fort St. John, Chalene has directed Seussical the Musical, The Importance of Being Ernest, and This is a Play. She is excited to once again take the director’s chair in Fort St. John for You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown this Christmas season. For information on BOX visit or follow us on twitter@ inthefleshthtr STAGE NORTH INFO:

Let's get Digital!

8th Annual Photo Scavenger Hunt

July 23 - August 14, 2011

Sign up today at the Visitor Centre. Pick up your scavenger list starting Saturday, July 23. City of Fort St. John Visitor Centre | 9523-100th Street | 250.785.3033 | |

JULY 2011



Detox 짜 Pipes 짜 Books Pop Culture & More Since 2008 10140 100 Ave FSJ (250) 787-8822 retrofsj@ POET & WRITER OPEN MIKE Tuesday, July 12, 7 pm



When I was in high school it was mandatory to take a class in career and personal planning. The premise of the class was to write resumes, practice interview techniques and to basically learn the life skills of the “real world�. Though I groaned through many of the assignments I did learn the importance of envisioning goals and formulating a plan to achieve said goals; skills I hold with high regard to this day. As valuable as goal setting and dreaming is, I have since been introduced to the equally potent power of intention setting. Unlike goals that map a specific objective for future outcomes, intentions are thoughts and energies projected for the present. When we quiet our minds through meditation and yoga, we are able to dig down into our hearts; this is where our integrity and morals are rooted. This is where we uncover our true happiness. When practiced with an intention, yoga allows us to cultivate bliss and discover our true self. Intentions enable us to nourish our integrity and align our worldly actions with our inner values. Intentions are like rich, organic fertilizer for the soil of our souls. Choosing an intention can sometimes be overwhelming. My advice to you, turn off your head and turn up your heart. As a little intentions-starter-kit, here are a few ideas to feel out when picking an intention for

yourself: seek clarity for the path you are traveling; open yourself to forgiving, to being forgiven; open yourself to growth and adaptation. Your intention may be to release your ego, to relinquish expectations, to love and be love or it might be something as basic as breathing out the noise. Right now my personal intention is one of transformation: to move away from a place of self-preservation and into the light of trust and truthfulness in my emotions, a place of honest vulnerability. There is beauty in intentions beyond the individual self, as we start with a single molecule bursting with energy. Given time intentions will grow and flourish out of our hearts and pour into the streets, spreading like viral bliss. Randelle Under the Yoga Tree offers an extensive yoga schedule for all levels, with public yoga classes offered 7 days a week. For an up-todate schedule visit Private and Corporate session available Contact Randelle Lusk, RYT-200 for more information: 250-263-5828 |


Face the Music is a City of Fort St. John spon sored initiative designed to support local and touri ng artists. The goal is to utilize local, regional, and international touring artists to pass along ideas , information and knowledge so that the strength of Fort St. John’s art scen e thrives for years to come.

dave tolley

Building on Fort St. John’s designation as The Music Capital of Northern BC, Face The Music has been an outstanding success. We have been running the workshops for over 8 months with each one a creative playground for both the artists and the community. This year we had the opportunity to expand our reach to songwriters, musicians, classical pianists, blues guitar players, DJ’s, and many more. First up was Peter Katz, a songwriter from Toronto. We learned how to play some swampy blues with Guy Davis from New York City. Harpdog Brown taught us the intricacies of the harmonica. Sarah Hagen explored the classical piano realm and Fred Eaglesmith explained the reality of what it takes to be a songwriter (really... no really). ill Gates inspired creativity and educated us on Abelton Live software. Harry Manx showed us how true life experience helps build beautiful music. Harry put out his first cd when he was 47, proving we all still have time. All in all, Face The Music has been a great experience for both artist and community. The opportunity to explore new ideas, different styles of music, and discover music we may have never heard before will

forever leave a legacy of talent in Fort St. John. If we’re gonna claim to be The Music Capital of Northern BC, we gotta own it, and show the rest of the world that we can put the music where our mouth is. Dear Face the Music people: I am writing to thank you for your involvement in the Face the Music workshops that the City of Fort Saint John has been sponsoring. I have had the pleasure of taking in a few of them. I really think these are valuable to the local arts and music community. I personally have grown a lot as a musician and song writer by attending these workshops. The Peter Katz workshop was especially enlightening for me. When I attended the workshop I was in the middle of a writing dry spell. In the two weeks after Peter coming I wrote and completed four songs, two of which are in the process of being recorded. I also have a handfull of friends who attended the Guy Davis blues workshop and found it really valuable. I just want to say thank you again and hope that this can continue on in the future. Sincerely, Joseph te Bulte

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The Peace River North Festival was well represented at the BC Performing Arts Festival, held from June 5 – 9 in Kamloops. Seven dancers qualified at our local festival to perform in the provincial competition in ballet, stage and modern categories that are divided into three age categories. In a year of firsts, the Peace River North Festival also sent a representative in piano; 16 year old Eliza Li who played a piece by Debussy along with a Beethoven Sonata and performed beautifully. Also for the first time the Aurora Dance Studio of Fort Nelson had a dancer qualify for the provincials. Zahria Stokes represented our festival in the Level I Stage Category. The most exciting breakthrough was for local dancer, Keily Stewart, who became the first dancer from Fort St. John to win at the Provincials. Keily qualified for the provincial festival in Quesnel in Level I Stage, which took place before the local competition, but we were proud to claim her as our own as she impressed both audience and judges, first with a beautiful lyrical number, “Ordinary Miracle”, choreographed by Ashley Campbell of the Move Dance Centre. In Level I competition, which includes dancers aged 10 to 12, dancers perform one dance and are assessed in technical workshops with the adjudicator, after which three dancers are selected to perform in a special semi-final session where the winners are chosen. The level of competition at the provincials is extremely high and the semi-finals are typically dominated by dancers from the lower mainland and the Victoria area, so to be chosen for the final three in her category was a huge accomplishment. At the semi-final, Level I dancers are required to perform a second solo, and


ABOVE: Provincial representatives from the Peace River North festival at Provincials in Kamloops. From left to right are Shiau Shan Kao Phan, Karleigh Smith, Katherine Grimes, Shannon May, Milanne Desfosses, Tristan Jackman and Wesley Kao Phan. Missing from the picture are Zahria Stokes, Eliza Li and Desiree Brown. RIGHT: Keily Stewart, who won her category at the BC Performing Arts Festival.

for this special evening, Keily chose to dance her jazz solo, “Bang, She Shot Me”, choreographed by Amy Gardner of “So You Think You Can Dance Canada”. This is a dance that has been winning for Keily all season and it didn’t fail her at the biggest test of all, and by the end of the evening she was Provincial Champion. It has been a dream season for Keily, starting last summer with a month spent at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet Summer School where she was invited to join their full time program. She opted to return home to Fort St. John and went on to win a Vancouver Coastal Dance Rage Scholarship and to enjoy great success at every festival that she attended through a busy dance season. Keily will return to Winnipeg this summer for another month at the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and then back to her home studio, the Move Dance Centre, to prepare for another year of dance, full of the promise of great and exciting accomplishments for our new champion.

Move Dance Centre

JULY 2011

REGISTER 10615 101 Ave 250 787 7754 23


faye anstey

I recently checked something off my vision board. I competed in my first Body Building competition in June here in Fort St. John. As you might expect, this took some dedication and a lot of focus. Why am telling you this? It really got me thinking of how to keep up my, or anyone’s, training through the busy summer season, what with camping, travel, and all. My conclusion? A workout that really broke my “training blahs”. You know the point where it is really easy to fall off track due to lack of interest. Keeping fit and on route to your goals can be easy with a little focus and creativity. Here is a circuit that is easy to follow anywhere, anytime that only requires you, and maybe a little 80’s pop to pick your mood up. For complete details and pictures on the following exercises, please visit www. and remember to consult a physician prior to commencing any physical activity. Push Ups: Position hands under shoulders. Feet are together, either on your knees or toes(more advanced). Bend elbows to 90 º lowering body down slowly and return to start. Squats: Feet in a wide stance, heels planted into the ground. Sit back and down in your squat. Return to start. NOTE: Do not allow knees to pass ankles. Tricep Dip: Find a ledge, such as a big rock, log or staircase. Facing away, place hands on ledge framing the hips. Extend legs and bend elbows to 90 º.

other in a long stance. Bend the BACK knee down until it is a few inches above the ground. Repeat with legs switched. NOTE: Do not allow front knee to pass ankles. Plank: On knees or toes (more advanced) place forearms on ground and extend legs so a straight line is achieved from ankles (or knees, if on knees) to hips to head. Hold for 30 seconds. Standing Super Mans: Stand tall. Take your left arm and right leg and arch them back, keeping the opposite arm and leg still. Repeat with opposite limbs. NOTE: Only arch until a slight pull is felt in low back. Step Ups: Find a stable ledge, log or staircase, and step your left foot up on ledge with heel planted, followed by raising you right knee high to hip level. Return right leg to floor, followed by left foot. Repeat on opposite side. Repeat each move 15 times. You may complete the circuit 1-3 times. For more advice on how to choose exercises right for you, contact me at or through my website at Faye Anstey is a Certified BCRPA Personal Trainer and Fitness Leader with over 8 years experience in the Health & Fitness Industry.

Lunges: Stand with legs split, one in front of the 24


Workforce Training will provide industry standard certified occupational safety ticket training, basic computer skills training, certified driver education training to achieve and obtain Class 7 Learners or Class 7 New Driver’s licensing, as well as professional development skills enhancement courses. First time drivers education is important, as having workers who are aware of and who use safe practices on the job is invaluable to industry. It decreases accidents on the job, saves lives and increases work production. Safety Tickets To be employed in today’s workforce, a number of certifications and tickets may be required depending on the position. We offer the following tickets: Occupational First Aid Level 1, WHMIS, H2S, ATV Safety, Transportation Endorsement, Transportation of Dangerous Goods, Traffic Control Person, Fire Suppression and Bear Aware. Basic Computer Training Today’s world is much different from the days of yesteryear and society has changed as a result of tech-

JULY 2011

nology. Computer skills and knowledge have rapidly become essential work place skills for a person to possess. Most jobs require a level of computer proficiency. The ability to work with computers has been identified as one of the 9 essential skills for today’s workforce. Job seekers have difficulty in applying for employment if they can’t communicate electronically, as it hinders their chances of obtaining work. It is in a person’s best interest, at the very minimum, to get some basic computer training in order to keep up with the fast pace of today’s work place. 21st Century Communications in the Workplace Explore communication etiquette when using 21st century communication tools such as e-mail, text messaging, facebooking, tweeting, blogging and video/web/teleconferencing. The inability to communicate effectively with colleagues and supervisors might lead to mistakes that could contribute to poor job performance and missed advancement opportunities. People must be able to communicate with each other on a daily basis to keep the work flowing in an orderly and timely fashion. In today’s fast paced world more companies are using technology. Come see what the latest trends are and how they could help you or your company. MORE INFO: | 250 785 0887



| image russell eggleston

Alright, no need to out me…. It’s true what you’ve heard. I play a ukulele. It’s not a lifestyle choice. I was born this way. It started out as a simple experiment. I was recently retired, wondering what to do with myself when I wasn’t snowboarding, when I heard a show on CBC Radio about ukuleles and their resurgence. On a whim, I went out and bought a little, cheap, soprano ukulele that looked like miniature Telecaster. That was less than two years ago. Now I own four ukes, each one more expensive than the last. I’ve come down with a bad case of UAS (ukulele acquisition syndrome). I only have four because my fifth one is being custom made and takes almost a year to get. As my madness has grown I’ve found others with the same “problem”. Some of them are notorious, like Herbert Khaury (Tiny Tim). Others may surprise you, like George Harrison of the Beatles, Steve Mazur of Phish; and Winston Marshall, Ben Lovett and Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons. Newest kid on the block is Eddie Vedder with his newest release, Ukulele Songs. I’ve been learning a lot of music, enjoying myself immensely and taking part in small jams with friends. But. alas, none of them play ukulele. Most of them play these oversized, unnecessarily complicated things with six strings. I need to hear the sound of multiple, simultaneous ukuleles. So here’s the deal. The first UkeJam will be at the North Peace Cultural Centre, Thursday, July 14th at 7:00 pm. I’ll arrange a room. The first two weeks will be one hour and will be free. Only requirement is to be a player, with a ukulele. Let’s see what happens



words tony warriner


images asia white

Thousands of people, 750 horse-drawn wagon rides, a 15-building cowboy town, colossal dance floor, live music and comedy, a dozen massive air toys, 200+ volunteers, 1000’s of Root Beer floats and hotdogs, and everything absolutely FREE?! It might sound too good to be true, but it’s not, and it happened June 18 in Centennial Park. Many would say it was Fort St. John’s party of the year. We get asked every year why we do it. What follows was written on the reverse side of an information card that we handed out during the event: Many people ask us why we would put on an event like this. Well, we love throwing first-class parties 2-steppin’, BBQ’n, and all! But more than that, we have a dream for our city that includes SELFLESS love, overflowing JOY, deep CONTENTMENT, relentless KINDNESS, VIBRANT homes, and abundant LIFE!! And Party in the Park is a small way of living out that dream! I believe each one of us is the recipient of sheer undeserved grace! I woke up this morning to brilliant sunshine, I breathed in the crisp morning air (for free), my heart is working (seemingly without my telling it too), somebody dropped off a Timmy’s coffee for me (random kindness), I was born into a prosperous country (didn’t plan that) and make my

JULY 2011

living off oil in the ground (didn’t put it there). Sheer grace, outrageous generosity everywhere! At Evangel, we feel that our response to this undeserved grace should be, at the very least, to “go and do likewise”. Freely we have received, so freely we give. And it won’t be the last time either! Our hope and prayer is that this spirit of selfless love and extravagant generosity catches on and becomes something much more everyday in our beautiful city. This quote was shared in our church one Sunday and I think it sums up our primary motivating factor for Party in the Park. Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~ Leo Buscaglia




photos tabitha dyer

The Fort St. John Hospital and Residential Care Project has reached a major milestone, with the completion of its first department: the Birthing Centre. The Birthing Centre is the first to be completed as construction crews work from south to north on the site. Kelly Joy, the hospital’s Clinical Coordinator for the Birthing Unit, said there is much anticipation regarding the Labour/ Delivery/Recovery/Postpartum (LDRP) process. “The Birthing Centre is now a reality, not just a discussion point of what is going to work for us. This new unit is so modern compared to the current unit and I feel a real sense of achievement at what the whole team has done together,” said Joy. “We are continuing to work together to plan our new processes for providing quality care and modern practices, such as constant contact between family and newborn and single room maternity care, yet doing our best to keep the room ‘nonclinical’.” Architect Troy Ransdell, Associate Vice President of Cannon Design, the architects for the project, said the fundamental philosophy of the new birthing centre focuses on patient and family-centered care. “It is a design philosophy that places the patient and their family at the fundamental core of design decisions. The idea is to support patient healing by creating environmental conditions that facilitate positive patient outcomes,” explained Ransdell.

The $297.9 million Fort St. John Hospital & Residential Care Facility is 28 on track to open in the summer of 2012.

Joy said some of the more unique features in the birthing unit include having eleven in-patient rooms including seven LDRPs, and four ante/postpartum rooms plus being able to accommodate the desire of new mothers to have round-the-clock support from their partners/families. “Each in-patient room has a huge window for lots of natural lighting which is fabulous, and the LDRPs each have their own shower/tub,” said Joy. Other unique features include the layout of the nursery, with a central desk surrounded by four infant cubicles and extra space allowing for enhanced management of sick newborns waiting for transport to a neonatal intensive care unit

into the department. The most secure zone holds the nursery and actual labour rooms.” Tony Boot, Site Superintendent, Hospital Facility, Acciona/Stuart Olson Dominion (the builders), said doing mockups of various rooms in the Birthing Centre ensured that most Northern Health requests were incorporated into the finished product. “The Northern Health Authority, along with existing hospital staff, signed off on the rooms before construction began, eliminating any major reconstruction,” said Boot. Northern Health Project Director, Tom Sparrow, said the completion of the Birthing Centre is significant because it represents the first step in the final stages of our project, the successful completion of a department. Both Joy and Ransdell praised the working relationship between the hospital’s clinical staff and ISL Health’s design team led by Glen Kelsey, Design Manager, Acciona./Stuart Olson Dominion. Joy added it was amazing how the design team was able to translate staff input into the construction process. “We are so pleased that we were able to involve so many of our staff and physicians on the clinical design team and everyone is really excited and maybe a little bit nervous about preparing for the future,” said Joy.

Kelly Joy and Tony Boot in the new birthing centre.

(NICU); a separate outpatient area which allows for the possibility of program growth in the future; and special security for the new Birthing Centre. Ransdell also noted the placement of the Birthing Centre next to the surgical department for quick access to the operating room for cesarean sections. “It’s a bit unique for the birthing unit to be adjacent to a full surgical suite. Additionally the location allowed the department to be removed from the main hospital traffic. Less traffic is good for infant safety and promotes a peaceful healing environment,” he noted. “Perhaps the most unique feature is how the department was divided into zones. Infant security and privacy is really important so we created departmental zones to advance these concepts. The zones provide higher levels of security and privacy as you go deeper

isl health

“We all realize that this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, but with it comes change – in fact, change to everything we do and to every process that we have developed over the past many years. So, in addition to the work that we do every day, we are now on the road to developing new ways that will work together to deliver outstanding quality care to each of our patients.”

A GRAND GESTURE bettyanne hampton

Few communities this size can boast having a piano the calibre of the Baldwin Concert Grand which, until recently, graced the stage at the Cultural Centre here Fort St John. Bragging rights aside, it is a tangible reflection of our community’s value for the arts. Long time arts champion Sue Popesku recalls when the piano was purchased by the Arts Council in 1974 with a grant from provincial government. It was maintained for several years by the Music Teachers Association. Shortly after the North Peace Cultural Centre opened in 1992, the Arts Council donated the piano to the Centre where it has remained centre stage as a fundamental and important contribution to the arts in the city. Think of all the fingers that have played those keys over the years in festivals, concerts, rehearsals, preparing for piano exams, theatre plays, jam sessions, school shows, by pianists of all ages and levels. The benefits of having such a remarkable instrument in our town are immeasurable. After hundreds of curtain calls the piano was in need of repair and so, just over four years ago the Cultural Centre Board and Manager spearheaded a fundraising campaign to the restore the Baldwin Concert Grand Piano. Sponsors were offered an opportunity to purchase “piano keys” and a banner went up with the names of generous donors on it. Piano shaped chocolates were sold. A few weeks ago, we seized an opportunity to move their vision forward. Armed with a revised quote and a generous piano moving donation from Advantage Relocation, the Baldwin Concert Grand was dismantled, wrapped and loaded into a moving van bound for Don’s Piano Warehouse in Stony Plain 30

where it would undergo a long awaited and much needed restoration. I called our Board members, I called the press, I called my friend Merrill who had mentored us through the process and gathered with staff to watch, as excited as anyone about what this move represented. Yes, the instrument will have a new sound board and shiny finish. The project also represents a community working together to restore something important, something of musical, social, educational value. It’s about the piano key sponsors who recognize the importance of having an instrument of superior quality for our community. It’s about the experience 400 school kids can have hearing a world-class concert pianist in their own town. It’s about local choirs being able to take their performance to a new level. It’s about a young student whose practice time on the grand piano helped her achieve success on her exam, or music school acceptance. It’s about quality and excellence. With just under 17,000 yet to raise, it means there are only 28 piano key sponsor spots left. 28 opportunities to be a part of a rich legacy for our community. When the Baldwin Concert Grand returns in September, it will sound, look and play even better than it did when it was new. Yes, there will be a party! What is it worth in dollars? $120,000. It’s worth to the community? Priceless!

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Northern Groove July 2011  

Northern Groove mag for July 2011 features a look back at 25 Years of the Watt School of Irish Dance, and we start our peek at local writers...

Northern Groove July 2011  

Northern Groove mag for July 2011 features a look back at 25 Years of the Watt School of Irish Dance, and we start our peek at local writers...