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Artwork: FRED CURATOLO and gLEnn COOk, St. Albert Leader


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013 St. Albert Leader

Photos by Andrew MacLeod - Gecko Photography


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Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

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Tanner Felske, a volunteer with the St. Albert Kinettes’ annual Christmas hamper campaign for the past five years, sorts and bags donated toys at the Enjoy Centre on Saturday to be delivered to families in need. The Kinettes wrapped up their deliveries on Monday, sending hampers out to more than 230 less fortunate families.

News . . . . . . . . . 3 Council Notes . . . . . 7 Opinion . . . . . . . . 8 Interactive . . . . . . 9 Entertainment . . . . . 18 Home Feature . . . . 23 Health . . . . . . . 24 Lifestyle . . . . . . . .27 Fun & Games . . . . . 28 Business . . . . . . 30


The Christmas lights are up — all 25,000 of them — the moose mugs are filled with egg nog and Frank Shirley has come over from his happy holiday slumber over there on Melody Lane with all the other rich people. It’s the haphap-happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny Kaye! How are people in St. Albert celebrating? See page 15 to find out!

Photo: JESSE KUSHNERYK, St. Albert Leader

Budget passes with some trepidation GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

After three weeks of deliberation, city council officially rubber-stamped the City of St. Albert’s 2014 budget Monday, but not without some trepidation over the revenues included. Councillors voted unanimously to approve the municipal and utility operating and capital budgets Monday, with the municipal operating budget resulting in a residential property tax increase of 1.87 per cent. “We each had a shot at it. We might not like bits and pieces of it — there are areas I don’t like — but we had opportunities to put forward motions if we didn’t like something. ... It’s a big package,



That’s how many words Clark Griswold (played by Chevy Chase) uses to describe his boss in the famous monologue from National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Some of the choice ones (that we can print) include: cheap, no-good, snake-licking, dogkissing, inbred and bug-eyed.

it’s a lot of work, and going be accurately disclosed and municipal property taxes should forward, we’ve got some work to have gone down as a result,” do,” Mayor Nolan Crouse said, Coun. Sheena Hughes said. also praising the City staff who “Because this is my first time out, worked long hours to put budget I’m going to trust that, when the documents together. taxes come in in However, January, we’re despite their going to make the votes in correct changes favour, some to reflect this.” councillors City had concerns administration that the is anticipating amount of Sheena Hughes growth taxation revenue the City councillor assessment of City was 2.75 per cent collecting was next year, which equates to an not being accurately reflected in additional $2.1 million in revenue. the tax rate. When administration first “I’m going to vote in favour, but with great trepidation, because brought forward the budget, I really feel this revenue should that money was earmarked

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Soldiers home for the holidays TREVOR ROBB Sun Media News Services

Up until Friday, Master Warrant Officer Don Cormier had never heard his three-year-old daughter speak. For the past six months, Cormier has been working as a senior supply technician for the Canadian Armed Forces task force in Afghanistan. Admittedly, missing out on the growth of his daughter has been a tough experience. “I think that’s one of the biggest challenges for a soldier. We train our whole career and we’re very confident in what we do, but it’s hard to prepare for being away from your loved ones for so long,” said Cormier, who also has a seven-year-old son. “Reuniting with my family is a thing I’ve been looking forward to for the past six months — I’m glad to hear what my daughter has to say to me.” The story is similar for Lt. Andre Bouchard, who missed out on his son’s birth while serving overseas. His wife, Miranda Bouchard, waited patiently for her husband’s arrival at the Lecture Training Facility at the Edmonton Garrison on Friday evening. “We’re very much looking forward to him coming home — I can’t even put it into words,” said Bouchard. “My husband was there for his daughter’s birth but he missed out on his son’s, and I just can’t wait to finally be able to hand him his son — it’s going to be amazing.”

The pair are part of a group of 35 soldiers who touched down Friday at the tarmac at the Shell AeroCentre at the Edmonton International Airport. The returning soldiers were part of Task Force 2-13 in support of Operation ATTENTION, Canada’s role in the NATO training mission in Afghanistan, which delivers support to the national security forces of Afghanistan, the Afghan National Army, the Afghan Air Forces, and the Afghan National Police. The redeployment saw a total of 107 soldiers return home, making stops in Trenton and Winnipeg before landing in Edmonton. All Canadian soldiers will return from Afghanistan in March 2014.

Photos: CODIE McLACHLAN, Sun Media News Services

Above: Master Warrant Officer Don Cormier hugs his son Nathan, 7, after arriving at the Lecture Training Facility at CFB Edmonton Friday. Left: Master Cpl. Frieda Van Putten plays with her Bernese Mountain Dog, Lacy. Below: A family shares a moment with a returning soldier.

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LoSeCa director makes cut GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

The woman at the helm of a local non-profit society that helps people with development disabilities was honoured this week for the work she does. On Friday, Marie Renaud, executive director of the LoSeCa Foundation in St. Albert, was named to The Wanderer’s Top 100 Women in Business, an honour she said was “fabulous.” “I was looking through the list, and wow, there are some amazing women,” she said. “I’m honoured to be in that group.” The Wanderer bills itself as “Edmonton’s premier daily online magazine,” and started publishing in July 2012. This is its first Top 100 Women in Business feature. “There are some incredible women. Some of them I had never heard of, but just looking at their bios — holy cow, we have some incredibly talented and smart women,” Renaud said. She added that she found out

about the honour a few months ago and had to keep it quiet, but when she first heard she was included in the list, she said she was “humbled” and a little surprised she was included in a list that had to do with business. “In the daily grind of what you do, particularly in community services or human services, you don’t realize that actually you are running a business. It’s a non-profit business, but it really is a business,” Renaud said. “You’re responsible for a lot of employees; you’re responsible for the money you’re entrusted with to provide support. It’s really nice to be honoured in that community.”

YARD CARE Speaking of business, LoSeCa is also celebrating the success of a new venture this winter. The society recently started up Four Seasons Yard Care, a business employing five of their clients that is taking advantage of St. Albert’s weather so far this winter by offering snow removal services

across the city, and they hope to transition into landscaping in the summer. “We’ve been talking about (the fact that) a really good way to go is to look at opening our own businesses and let them take over and manage it with our assistance,” Renaud said, pointing that the society also runs their I’m Unique Thrift Store and a daycare centre called Little LoSeCa, both of which also provide employment opportunities for clients. “So we looked at need, which was the first part of it. And we knew this was a good place for snow removal.” And the response so far has taken off, with 26 contracts and

Leader file photo

LoSeCa Foundation executive director Marie Renaud was named to online magazine The Wanderer’s Top 100 Women in Business this week. counting under their belts. “We are so lucky to be in St. Albert. This community blows my mind,” Renaud said. But those who have hired the company aren’t the only

ones benefitting, Renaud said — the workers are gaining confidence and a sense of purpose. “They’re their own bosses — they really like to think about the time when they can hire someone. ‘Do I get to boss them around?’” she laughed. “Eventually, when things gets rolling, we want them to have a larger percentage ... to have more equipment. Our dream is to have a fleet of Bobcats.”

AHF sets the record straight on museum expansion debate

GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

The Arts and Heritage Foundation of St. Albert isn’t letting plans for an expansion of the Musée Heritage Museum go down without a fight. During municipal budget deliberations on Tuesday, Dec. 10, city councillors voted to unfund a planned $2.5-million expansion of the museum in St. Albert Place, with many saying that the project wasn’t on residents’ radars, that the current museum was sufficient, and that it didn’t attract enough visitors to warrant an expansion.

However, AHF board of trustees vicechair Tom Thackeray came before council on Monday before the budget was formally approved to let council know he felt some of the figures used to make the decision to unfund the project weren’t accurate. Thackeray pointed out that the museum’s 4,531 square feet of exhibition and archive space paled in comparison to other mid-sized cities in Alberta, who have between 17,000 and 42,000 square feet of space. “Even our neighbour to the north, Morinville, their museum is 5,738 square feet,” he said. The expansion wouldn’t add much more

exhibition space, Thackeray added, but give the gift shop more space, which could increase revenues, and would move staff out of work areas that were never intended to be offices, allowing more space to expand the museum’s collection. “(The current office areas have) no windows, poor ventilation, uninsulated concrete walls and cramped conditions being shared with exhibition preparation, program prep space, artifact cataloguing and archival processing,” Thackeray said. As well, Thackeray contested some of the attendance statistics brought forward, saying that the general attendance figure of about 10,000 visitors for 2012 — or only

four per hour — that was thrown around during the debate didn’t take into account an additional 8,730 school children and community members that visit the museum each year for programs. “Visitor numbers so far for 2013 are approaching 21,000,” he said. Mayor Nolan Crouse also inquired about when council would see the AHF’s 10-year capital plan, which was a requirement in the new partnership agreement the two sides signed in early 2013. Both Thackeray and city manager Patrick Draper were confident that plan would be before council in the first quarter of 2014.


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

A group of local churches is hoping to strengthen its place in the community by formally organizing into a non-profit society. The St. Albert Christian Ministerial Association is a group of 10 to 12 churches in the city that was formed some three or four years ago, and has been involved in organizing events like the Easter sunrise service at St. Albert Place, the Community Carol Sing each Christmas season at the Arden Theatre and the Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast. Now, says association chair Rev. David Wulkan of Christ Community Church, they want to make the shift to being a fullfledged non-profit society mainly to increase their transparency. “We wanted to create more accountability with the handling of money,” Wulkan said. “We

raise money through the Prayer Breakfast and the Carol Sing, money and donations for the (St. Albert) Food Bank, generally. And instead of finding someone to do it through their church, we thought, to keep it above board and within a system with bylaws and officers, we could have that accountability built in.” Some of that money raised is put toward the Bridge Fund, which the ministerial association set up in conjunction with the City of St. Albert’s Family and Community Support Services department and is administered by the St. Albert Food Bank and Community Village. The Bridge Fund helps people with immediate needs that aren’t necessarily covered under other programs offered by the City or the Food Bank. Another benefit of the move to a non-profit society, Wulkan added, is that it gave the ministers involved in the

association an opportunity to re-evaluate and clarify their purpose and their goals as a group. “We want to be about specific events, specific issues. So that’s what we’ll talk about, and we’ll decide if this is something we should all get on board with together, or this is something that we’ll send somebody to be representative for,” he said. The association already has representatives on the City’s Strategy and Mobilization Committee and Temporary Residential Services Committee. While the application for nonprofit status is well underway, it was hard for Wulkan to say exactly where he hoped the group would go in the future. “I think what we’re hoping for is that we find deeper connections in the community — not just us as clergy, but also connecting our congregations,” he said.

Photo: JESSE KUSHNERYK, St. Albert Leader

Ministerial association seeks non-profit status

Happy Hole-idays Four-year-old Akari McLeod decorates a flower pot Saturday afternoon at the Enjoy Centre as a part of their Holidays with the Holes celebration.


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013


• DECEMBER 16 , 2013 •




FCSS Funding Allocations

Community Events Grant Funding

Council voted Monday to allocate funds to the St. Albert Family Resource Centre, Stop Abuse in Families (SAIF), St. Albert Community Village, St. Albert 50+ Club and the St. Albert Community Information and Volunteer Centre (CIVC).

Council voted Monday to give $5,000 to the organizers of the 2014 Canadian Stick Curling Championships, to be held in St. Albert .

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“The real measure of a community is the way that it treats its most vulnerable and I think this allocation reflects well on the community because I think what we’re saying is that there is a commitment here that people have the resources they need to be successful.”

“They did not get the application in on time so we as a Council asked Administration to just evaluate if they were eligible. It’s a little outside the due process but I think it’s appropriate since it is a national event.”

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Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013



Staying in the spirit

Here’s a photo of a building or landmark around St. Albert. Can you figure out where it is?


alk about a Christmas miracle — even politicians seem to be getting into the holiday spirit this year, judging by the number of apologies issued over the past week. But perhaps the biggest apology of all came from federal Industry Minister by Glenn Cook James Moore for his remarks last week on child poverty. “Is it my job to feed my neighbour’s child?” he quipped to a Vancouver radio station. “I don’t think so.” After initially arguing that his comments were taken out of context, Moore apparently got an injection of holiday spirit and fessed up on Monday, apologizing for what he called an “insensitive” remark. “Insensitive” is an understatement, though, no matter whether Moore was referring to himself personally or to his role in government. As has been stated many times and in many ways over the years, the true measure of society is in how it treats its weakest members. The government has a responsibility to look after the needy and the most vulnerable, especially when they are young and have a chance to break the cycle of poverty. And Moore could surely spare a portion of his cushy cabinet salary to make Christmas a little brighter for some of his constituents. The look on the faces of those he might help should be all the repayment he needs. Of course, this is a sentiment that must extend beyond the Christmas season and much farther than Moore. The holidays are an especially hard time to endure when people have little or nothing to celebrate, but it’s not the only hard time. People still turn to food banks and to charities during the dog days of summer, but unfortunately that’s when shelves tend to go empty and funds run dry. If we all gave a little more, if we kept the spirit of giving in our hearts well after the Christmas ornaments have been stored away for another year, then not only would we feel better ourselves, but the future would be much brighter for those less fortunate. Because, if we don’t help them, no one else will.


Last Week: École Father Jan

Giving to others a small taste of God’s love


his is “My City.” As a pastor at The Salvation Army Church and Community Centre in St. Albert, I have been here now for over two years, and I love St. Albert. I have seen and experienced the immense generosity of the people in St. Albert through volunteerism and donations. The giving to social programs and helping others is a true testimony to the hearts of those who live here, especially during Christmas. Unfortunately, there are still those in our community who need a little help. The need is growing as St. Albert is growing. The reality of our world today is that there are trials that come our way and we all need help in some form or fashion. It’s good to

Lt. Peter


St. Albert Salvation Army

My City know that there are people we can go to and rely on for help and hope. Christmas can be a tough time for some. The loss of a loved one or the feelings of being alone can be a reality for some of us. There is a mingling of emotions that come with this very busy time, with joys and stresses all tied together. I find that many, however, find joy in giving. Many who give will never see the expressions on the faces of those who they have helped, but they should know that they are so thankful. With

Publisher: Rob LeLacheur

Editor: Glenn Cook

Client Services: Michelle Barstad

your support, The Salvation Army has been able to provide all who are in need with the opportunity to have hope. I have seen the faces of those who you have helped and believe me it is a wonderful sight. I believe that God loves us just like that. He gave us the amazing gift of Jesus Christ. He loves to see the faces of those who accept that wonderful gift of salvation. Christ is what Christmas is all about. All we have to do is accept it. He is the joy that fills our hearts, which turns to love for others. I hope that everyone will know that kind of joy and love that comes from God alone. We get a small taste of it when we give to others. We are invited to remember the Jesus this

Delivery concerns? Email us at All claims of errors in advertisements must be received in writing by the publisher within 5 days after the first publication. Liability for errors or failure to publish is limited to the amount paid for the space occupied. The opinions expressed within publication are not necessarily those of the St. Albert Leader or RJ Lolly Media. Material published may not be copied or reproduced without the express written consent of the publisher.

Christmas. The perfect gift is “Immanuel,” which means “God with us.” That’s a very comforting thought. I see people with such generous hearts and know that this is a city where we can find both hope and dignity for all. I am truly thankful that so many people have made this Christmas special for everyone. May God bless you and Merry Christmas St. Albert! Owned and operated by

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Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

INTERACTIVE » Comment on stories at

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WEB POLL What’s your favourite Christmas movie?

Hinton tournament Champions! St. Albert Titans! #stalbert — @hockeydad97

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Seasons Gift Shop in #stalbert rocks. Thanks for saving me the trouble of wrapping the gift I purchased! #shoplocal — @brittbrew

It’s a Wonderful Life .............22% Miracle on 34th Street ......... 10% Home Alone ............................7% Elf ..........................................7% A Christmas Story ..................7% Christmas Vacation ..............22% How Grinch Stole Christmas ... 15% Other .................................... 10%

So grateful for neighbors who snowblow my driveway as a random act of kindness. #stalbert #thankyou

@ M e a g h a n S m i t h ’s beautiful, heartwarming concert at the #Arden was the perfect way to spend a cold snowy night. Thanks M! #stalbert #yeg

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Sidekicks Xmas gift hampers a HUUUUGE success. Thx to generous #StAlbert people for helping local families in need! — @StAlbertCIVC

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The opening shot of Apple’s new holiday ad, titled “Misunderstood,” was identified as a St. Albert street by some eagle-eyed observers on Twitter after it debuted on YouTube Monday.

St. Albert stars in new Apple holiday ad GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

It seems St. Albert is playing a starring role in a holiday ad for a technology giant that is garnering a lot of buzz on social media. Apple posted their 90-second Christmas video, entitled “Misunderstood,” to YouTube on Monday, already gathered more than 1.3 million views by Wednesday morning. The ad features a teenaged boy who seemingly can’t put down his iPhone during a trip to his grandparents’ house, only to surprise his family on Christmas morning with a special gift he was putting

together all along. But some sharp-eyed sleuths on Twitter noticed that at least one shot in the ad featured St. Albert. During the opening shot, in which the teenager’s family pulls out of their driveway to head to grandma and grandpa’s place, a St. Albert Transit bus stop sign is clearly visible. One eagle-eyed viewer, going by the Twitter handle @iBRYca, was even able to narrow down the filming location to a stretch of Erin Ridge Road by comparing it to an image from Google Earth. The rest of the ad, it is believed, was shot on Ada Boulevard in Edmonton, near the North Saskatchewan River valley.

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Salvation Army gives dignity this Christmas GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

The St. Albert Salvation Army is helping less fortunate families put a little something extra under their Christmas trees this year. On Monday, the local church opened its Christmas Toy Centre at its facility on Liberton Drive, allowing parents to pick out Christmas presents for their kids from a huge selection of board games, stuffed animals, sports equipment, books and other toys. “We wanted to allow people who are in times of need not feel like they’re a charity case,” said Lt. Peter Kim, pastor of the St. Albert Salvation Army, “but rather feel like they’re still buying something for their kids. They just don’t have to pay for it.” Kim said that the idea came from his time with the Salvation Army in Winnipeg. “It wasn’t about giving someone something in a bag that they haven’t chosen in a bag for their children,” he said. “To add a sense of dignity, and knowing that their daughter likes My Little Pony versus Barbie, is a huge thing during Christmas.” When people come in looking for help, the Salvation Army has a standardized screening process to ensure they are truly in need. Then, they speak with Shirley Gould, the local community services co-

Photo: GLENN COOK, St. Albert Leader

Toys for kids 0-2 years old are seen piled up at the St. Albert Salvation Army’s Toy Centre, which will remain open until Saturday and gives parents a chance to pick out their own gifts. ordinator, to schedule a time to come in and browse through the available toys with one of their volunteers, who have also been screened. “It gives a sense of respect. We want to respect people’s privacy as well, so we carefully screen all our volunteers,” Kim said.

So far, they have 96 families lined up to come into the Toy Centre, many of whom have been referred by other community agencies, like the St. Albert Food Bank and Community Village. “Whenever someone comes in for a food hamper, (the Food Bank) refers them to us. And if someone comes in for toys, we refer

them to Suzan (Krecsy) at the Food Bank,” Kim said, noting that the two groups are also teaming up for the Food Bank’s annual Christmas dinner, taking place tonight (Thursday), with the Salvation Army and local Rotary clubs providing toys for Santa Claus to hand out to kids. A lot of those families have teenaged kids, though, and Kim said it’s a “real struggle” to gather up items that are appropriate for that age. “We have one box for all of our toys, and that’s at Wal-Mart,” he said. “We have a great relationship with Wal-Mart.” Any toys left over at the end of the year, will be stored away to give the Salvation Army a head start on the next Christmas season. The Toy Centre will remain open until Saturday. Meanwhile, as of Friday, the local Salvation Army kettle campaign was about halfway to its goal of $300,000 this year, and Kim said the biggest challenge has been finding volunteers to man the kettles. They did get a big boost late Friday, though, as $11,000 was collected at the two Scotiabank branches in St. Albert, with the branches matching donations up to $5,000. The kettles will remain out in local stores until Christmas Eve. You can also text HOPE2011 to 45678 to make a $5 donation.


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013 Photo: TOM BRAID, Sun Media News Services

Michael “The Bulin Wall” Jugovics dives for the ball during Xmas Cup action in the parking lot of Ottewell Elementary School in Edmonton Saturday.


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Xmas Cup hits street for 25th year

ALLISON SALZ Sun Media News Services

The sound of hockey sticks on the pavement, Tim Hortons coffee on the sidelines and Joey Moss singing the national anthem. It doesn’t get much more Canadian than that. Just over a dozen players strapped on their gloves, pads and, of course, toques Saturday for the 25th annual Xmas Cup. The annual ball hockey tourney aims to raise cash for Winnifred Stewart’s Empties to Winn program as well as the Joey Moss foundation. The day began early, with players trading their hockey sticks for shovels to clear off two “arenas” in the parking lots of Ottewell Elementary School. And of course, what’s a hockey game without the national anthem, sung by one of Edmonton’s hockey heroes, Joey Moss. The Winnifred Stewart Association oversees “Joey’s Home,” an assistedliving residence for individuals with developmental disabilities. It’s a long-standing tradition in the south-side neighbourhood that has turned into both a fundraising venture and a chance to catch up with old friends. Laurel Warwa came all the way from Calgary to watch her brother and the rest of

the boys battle it out to hoist the Xmas Cup trophy. Her brother, Kevin Sterza, started the tourney over two decades ago; the boys used to play right in front of their house. Warwa’s mom used to cook up a bunch of chili and hot chocolate, she said, so coming back for the milestone year of the tournament was a way to celebrate her and support the cause. “I drove from Calgary. I wasn’t going to miss the 25th annual. I did it more to be here in the name of my mom. My plan was to make chili, but it didn’t work out,” she said. “They have so much fun. They’re like a bunch of grownup kids. They’re fun to watch.” Moss’s younger brother Steve, his legal guardian, wore a vintage Oilers windbreaker jacket as he battled it out in one of the more fierce three-on-three matches. Trying to catch his breath, Moss said they couldn’t have asked for a better day to raise funds for such a good cause. “The weather co-operated with us which is fantastic,” he said. “It’s great to have 25 committed guys, Joe Moss here to sing the national anthem, to have these guys give the proceeds to the Winnifred Stewart’s Empties To Winn program, it’s pretty special.”


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Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Everyone celebrates the holidays a little differently. So we asked some prominent members of the St. Albert community to share with us how they celebrate ... Tell us about a dish you or someone in your family only makes at Christmas, but you look forward to all year long. My Mum used to make the BEST Christmas pudding. It was epic, took all day to make and was SO worth it.

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DAR SCHWANBECK, NABI executive director

What’s the best Christmas gift you ever gave? A Cabbage Patch doll — it had to be a bald baby! We were posted in Chatham, N.B., and that was the ONLY gift our youngest daughter asked Santa for. The look on her face was worth all the phone calls, searching through stores, etc., to get it.

SUZAN KRECSY, St. Albert Food Bank & Community Village When she was three, my oldest daughter drew a picture of her Granny. I transferred it onto an apron and machine embroidered it. My Mum wore that apron until it was in tatters. My Mum has passed but I found the apron in her drawer. It’s now back with me.

An engagement ring — 33 years later, it still looks good on her hand!

WES BRODHEAD, city councillor

What are some of your New Year’s traditions?

LYNN CAROLEI, Sublime Swim and Sunwear

What’s your earliest memory of Christmas?

Totally, it has always been about hockey of some sort on New Year’s Day — shinny, coaching, playing, watching ... you name it.

When I was young (around five years old) my grandmother’s neighbour came to the house dressed as Santa Claus. He gave every child a kitchen utensil. I received a pie serving utensil. I still own said utensil.


GILLES PREFONTAINE, city councillor

Being in a church Christmas pageant (age 7) and having to sing all three parts of “We Three Kings” because the other two kings got stage fright!

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Mural Mosaic gets Kickstart GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader


Just in time for his birthday, a majestic mural of Jesus Christ is one step closer to becoming a reality. St. Albert artists Lewis Lavoie, Paul Lavoie and Phil Alain are the creative forces behind Mural Mosaic, and have created artworks for clients all over North America. But now, one of the pieces dearest to their hearts entitled King of Kings is closer to completion after a campaign on crowdfunding site Kickstarter raised more than $21,000 in 60 days — $6,000 more than their initial goal. “One thing about Kickstarter is that you really put yourself out there and you don’t know what’s going to materialize from it. You could have a lot of egg on your face if you fail,” Alain said. “But to succeed and go past (our goal) is a really exciting thing for us.” Mural Mosaics use a number of smaller paintings to create one large image. Some of the team’s other

works have been featured at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, at Spruce Meadows in Calgary and at the 2013 Canada Summer Games in Sherbrooke, Que. But those works have been commissioned, while King of Kings has — up until now — been a labour of love. “(This money) gives Lewis the time; we really needed some time for Lewis to spend in the studio. It’s like getting a grant, where you can now spend time in the studio rather than have to focus about other projects all the time to keep yourself alive. It gives him some flexibility to really pour himself into the mural,” said Alain, who added that they hope to have the King of Kings mural completed by Easter. The Mural Mosaic team offered a number of perks to backers of their campaign, ranging from an advent calendar and a bookmark for a pledge of $10 to full mural reproduction kits for pledges of $4,000 — one of which was actually snapped up.

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“That was an exciting one,” Alain said. “You expect to sell a lot more of the smaller things. I think we sold 12 of Lewis’s originals, which was at the $500 level. We expected a few, but to have that many was a really exciting thing — to know people are interested in the original art, which is a testament to Lewis’s art.” The next step for the team is to get the perks for the backers together and shipped out, while still balancing requests that keep coming in for commissioned murals. “It’s a lot of painting now,” Alain said. “There’s a lot of painting to be done in a short period of time.” But, he added, Kickstarter is something they hope to use again in the future. “We’re going to wait and see how it all finishes off, but to succeed like that, it’s exciting to see how it can work,” Alain said. “We definitely had a positive experience.” For more on Mural Mosaic and their other works, check out www.

Seasons Greetings and Warm Wishes for the Holiday Season


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

O G N I B o H o #LeaderH #LeaderHoHo

B I N G O New Years Party Hat

An Especially Hideous Christmas Sweater

Kissing Under the Mistletoe

Vehicle Stuffed to the Roof with Gifts

A Homemade Ornament Hung on your Tree

Elf on the Shelf

Someone Sitting on Santa’s Knee

Party Favor with 2014 on it

Someone Eating a Candy Cane

An Angel Tree Topper

Glass of Egg Nog

Dad Snoring Grandma/Grandpa ep in the Chair Asle ents Pres Opening

Stockings Hung on a Mantle


You Enjoying a Holiday Fire

A Cooked Turkey

Make a Donation to a Local Charity

A Gingerbread House

Best Outdoor Light Display

What you Left out for Santa

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family or friends Take a picture of yourself (Selfie!) or es to the or all of the above in any of the pos Ho rHo ade #Le htag has left. Tag it with the our into red ente y and you’re instantl gers random draw for one of the Best Bur in ck Sha ger Bur k’s Jac in St. Albert from rict. Dist downtown Perron All photos, posts & tweets must have hashtag #LeaderHoHo prior to January 5, 2014 to be eligible for random draw for prizes. No cash value.

(yes the fireplace channel counts)

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Your Entire Family Wearing Santa Hats

An Advent Calendar

New Years Eve Fireworks

Merry Christmas and my Sincere Thanks for your Support this Year! CRAIG PILGRIM � 780.458.8300 �



Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Local coach adds voice to book

GLENN COOK St. Albert Leader

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A local life coach is hoping her contribution to a new self-help book will inspire people to overcome their fears, just like she did. Kristy-Lea Tritz of St. Albert is one of 30 authors featured in Living Without Limitations: 30 Mentors to Rock Your World, a new book packed with knowledge and advice to help readers live their lives to the fullest. It took a big leap on Tritz’s own part to put pen to paper and write her chapter in the book, but she said it was all worth it. “It took me pushing through all my fear to even be able to write for the book, so it feels like a huge accomplishment,” Tritz said. “It feels like one of those things you dream of your entire life. I’ve dreamed of this since I was three. Now it’s actually happening, and I’m 33 now. So it’s never too late for your dreams to come true.” And she hopes others will be inspired to start pushing through their own fears after reading her chapter in the book. “I hope people will begin to live their lives outside of fear and find what their passions are in life, and live those,” Tritz said.

Other authors featured in the book include Stacey Cargnelutti, Krista Von Willer, Michael Hanle and Hanna Hashim. “I feel honoured,” she said. “There are people from pretty much every walk of the coaching life, and the book takes you through each one of those coaches, and they teach you about one specific topic. Some are teaching you about business; others are teaching about personal stuff.” The book was compiled by Anita Sechesky. Before becoming a life coach, Tritz had tried out a number of different occupations, including an early childhood education, a massage therapist, a nail technician, an aesthetician and an aromatherapist. But she said it was her own personal journey of overcoming fear that brought her into the life coaching field. “I always wanted to help people, so I thought, ‘Maybe I’ll be a counsellor,’ through my whole life. But then I came across life coaching and was like, ‘That’s it! That’s the missing key,’” she said. While she can now call herself a published author, Tritz isn’t sitting back. She is starting up an Internet radio program in 2014,

TRITZ KRISTY-LEA as well as working on her first children’s book, another anthology contribution, and products for parents and teachers who work with children who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). For more information on Living Without Limitations: 30 Mentors to Rock Your World, visit You can also visit Tritz’s website at

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Photo: ANDREW MACLEOD, Special to the Leader

Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Musicians ready to kick off the holidays St. Albert Leader

A newly formed collective of local musicians is hoping to put a little rhythm under the Christmas tree this year. The Rhythm Group is made up of five local musicians who kept running into each other at open mic nights in the city. On Friday, they’re taking over the Cornerstone Hall (6 Taché St.) with special guest Paul Woida for their Holiday Kickoff concert. Guitarist and group member Mathew Potter said it should be a great night full of music and merriment, during which those who attend will have a chance to see some of what the St. Albert music scene has to offer. “To me, it’s amazing to see there’s so much local St. Albert talent that just needs a little bit of help getting recognized,” he said. The Rhythm Group also includes singer-songwriter Ella Coyes and acoustic blues/rock band Southern Streets: Conor McIntyre, Sean

Peacock and Stephen Badry. “We just decided to pool all our talents together and create an entity — the Rhythm Group — to help promote other artists and bring recognition to local artists that don’t have it,” Potter said. “... We definitely represent a wide range of music.” But they’re always looking to add more musicians to their fold. “That’s the whole point of it. As we grow, we want to be able to promote more people and do more with it,” Potter said. Aside from concerts like the one coming up on Friday, Potter said the group plans to host open mic nights in the city in the future. “Our goal is to put on a show like this one every couple of months, just to support an artist,” he said. The Rhythm Group Holiday Kickoff featuring Paul Woida takes place on Friday at 7 p.m. at Cornerstone Hall. Tickers are $10 each and are available through Eventbrite.

Hark! The herald angels sing Christmas music was front and centre at a couple of events in St. Albert over the weekend. Above: Nancy Unsworth leads the audience during the St. Albert Christian Ministerial Association’s annual carol sing at the Arden Theatre on Sunday afternoon. Below: The Mission Hill Brass Band gets into the swing of things Sunday evening at the St. Albert United Church. Photo: GRANT CREE, Special to the Leader


Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Brent Rathgeber, Q.C., M.P. Edmonton - St. Albert 780.459.0809


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013


Advertising Feature

Get your Home Ready for Holiday Guests Hosting family members for the holidays is a great way to spend quality time with loved ones during a special time of year. When families gather for the ��������� ���� ������ ����� ��� ���������� ������� host to distant relatives. Accepting such hosting duties is an act that comes with many responsibilities, including readying the home for overnight guests. The following are a few ways hosts can prepare their homes for holiday guests. � Take inventory of linens. Overnight guests mean you will need extra bed linens, blankets and pillows. Take inventory now, and inspect each set of sheets to make sure they are still usable. If sheets are ragged or the blankets have thinned, purchase new linens so your guests feel as if they’re at home. If your linen closet is fully stocked with quality linens, clean them in the days leading up to your guests’ arrival. � Buy some night lights. You might be familiar enough with your home’s layout in the dark, but your guests likely won’t have that same sense of familiarity. Purchase a few night lights for the hallways and restrooms so guests can easily get around should they need to get up in the middle of the night. � Childproof your home if necessary. Kids can be curious, so holiday hosts without children of their own should childproof their homes before any guests arrive with kids in tow. Move hazardous materials to high shelves that kids can’t reach, and make sure any prescription medications are also out of reach of youngsters. If your home has any steep staircases, consider purchasing some child gates or asking your

guests to bring their own gates to reduce the risk of young kids falling down your stairs. � Stock up on toiletries and other essentials before guests arrive. Stock up on toilet paper, tissues, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, and lotion in the days leading up to the holidays. In addition, consider buying kitchen items like paper towels, napkins, plastic cutlery, and paper plates. Paper plates may come in especially handy, saving you the trouble of having to load up the dishwasher after meals in which paper plates and plastic cutlery ����� ���� ������� � Give your common areas a thorough cleaning. Any common areas of the home, including the foyer, living room, dining room, kitchen, and restrooms, should be given a thorough cleaning prior to your guests’ arrival. Clean any bedrooms where guests will be staying as well. You don’t need to devote as much time �� �������� ���� ��� ������� �� ���� ����� ��� make sure these rooms are presentable as well. � Clean out the closets. If your hall closets are largely used for storing miscellaneous items, clean them out for the coming days to make room for your guests’ coats, jackets, scarves, hats, and shoes. Moving these items, be it to the garage, a backyard shed or the basement, can be temporary, but you will need your closets to serve a more traditional purpose while your guests are in town for the holidays. Then relax, Enjoy your friends and family and have a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

HEALTH Exercise helps women put away cigarettes DALE CARRUTHERS Sun Media News Services

Photo: LYLE APSINALL, Sun Media News Services

Look closely — radiation oncologist Dr. Siraj Husain holds a model of a radioactive grain, the key part of breast brachytherapy, at the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary on Friday.

Grains of hope for cancer patients of radioactive metal to ward off any tumorous returns and mop up cancerous remnants. Researchers in Calgary are planting “I had 22 needles but it beats having seeds of hope in breast the regular radiation cancer patients. of six weeks, five days Doreen Thomson, a week,” she said, 58, was reminded adding the procedure of that when the followed a successful radioactive titanium lumpectomy. grains implanted in She’s one of 20 Dr. Sinaj Husain her left breast set off patients in a $252,000 Cancer researcher alarms at the funded by Mexico border earlier the Alberta Cancer this month. Foundation. The study is based on the “I’d forgot to put on my shield to success of the approach to treat prostate prevent that,” Thomson said. cancer. It was a minor inconvenience for Inserting the radioactive bits — which Thompson, who was the first patient are slightly smaller than a grain of rice in Calgary to receive the tiny bits — ensures more targeted treatment

BILL KAUFMANN Sun Media News Services

“This allows us to shape the radiation dose.”

Hon. Doug Horner, MLA

Spruce Grove - St. Albert Constituency 780-458-1393

while avoiding side-effects, Dr. Siraj Husain said. “With radiation outside the breast, we create a lot of skin reaction ... this allows us to shape the radiation dose,” Husain said. “It’s a minor surgical procedure and the advantage of that is they can go back to life very quickly and think of themselves as cured.” Vital chest organs like the lungs and heart are spared the effects of more indiscriminate radiation therapy, he said. The brachytherapy involves inserting 50 to 80 of the grains and moving them into place around the former tumour site. It appears to work for women with smaller tumours, Husain said.

Pregnant women itching to light up should put away the smokes and hit the gym to help kick their dangerous habit, according to new research from Western University. The study shows as little as 20 minutes of low-to-moderate exercise is enough to ward off nicotine cravings and reduce withdrawal symptoms for pregnant women. Previous research has shown exercise reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms, but this is the first time the results have been replicated with pregnant women, said lead researcher Harry Prapavessis, director of Western’s exercise and health psychology laboratory. Statistics show 19 per cent of Canadian women between 20 and 24 still smoke during pregnancy, which can lead to lower birth weight, behavioural problems among offspring and even prenatal death. The study, published in the journal Addictive Behaviors, examined the effects of 20 minutes of exercise on nicotine craving and withdrawal symptoms among inactive pregnant smokers. Researchers looked at 30 women from Canada and England who were in their second trimester and smoked around 10 cigarettes a day. Participants reported a 30 per cent reduction in tobacco cravings, though the craving did return after 30 minutes in some cases. The women also reported less restlessness, irritability, tension and depression during the study.

Sending wishes warm and bright your way at this joyous time of year

Stephen Khan, MLA St. Albert Constituency 780-459-9113


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Chamber Gala

Indoor Christmas An Evening Under the Stars! Farmers’ Market February 1, 2014 It’s a tropical night to remember, with the sights and sounds of the Caribbean to wash away your winter blues!

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The last St. Albert Indoor Christmas Market of the season takes place this Saturday, December 21st. Located in the City Hall lobby from 10am - 3pm, the market features one-stop shopping for baking, crafts, gifts and all your other Christmas needs. Parking is free. For more information contact Debbie at 780.458.2833 or visit

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Rise in prescription drug abuse among youth cause for concern kids in Grades 7 to 12, about four per cent of those surveyed admitted to drinking and driving (getting behind the wheel within an hour of consuming two or more drinks). Even more alarming to the researchers was the continued practice of smoking pot and driving, which roughly 10 per cent said they have done. “The public health messages around the dangers of drinking and driving seem to have had an impact on our youth but the same can’t be said for cannabis use, which is worrisome,” principal investigator Dr. Robert Mann said.

SUN MEDIA NEWS SERVICES – The rise of prescription drug abuse among Canada’s youth is cause for concern, according to a new report from Centre for Addiction and Mental Health. The 2013 Ontario Student Drug Use and Health Survey (OSDUHS) of more than 10,000 students found that one in eight reported taking a prescription opioid pain medication recreationally in the past year. About one in 10 said they’d used stimulant drugs, and about 10 per cent used over-thecounter cough syrup to get high, CAMH said. While drinking is at an all-time low among

Photo: Sun Media News Services


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Average list price:

Average sale price:

Low $334,900 / High $1,198,800

Low $260,000 / High $775,000 Avg. days on market: 43

Low $669,000 / High $669,000

Low $307,500 / High $390,000 Avg. days on market: 24




Sold Listings: 24

Active Listings: 6

Average sale price:

Average list price:

Average sale price:

Low $409,900/ High $929,900

Low $382,500/ High $770,000 Avg. days on market: 49

Low $324,900 / High $529,500

Low $260,000 / High $368,500 Avg. days on market: 19

FOREST LAWN *180 Days Back


Sold Listings: 6 $333,583


Active Listings: 1

Sold Listings: 10

Active Listings: 17

Sold Listings: 13

Average list price:

Average sale price:

Average list price:

Average sale price:

Low $345,000 / High $345,000

Low $322,500 / High $435,000 Avg. days on market: 37

Low $409,900 / High $1,095,000

Low $345,000 / High $630,000 Avg. days on market: 53




Average list price:

Average list price:



Active Listings: 20

Active Listings: 29 $622,328






WOODLANDS Active Listings: 6

Sold Listings: 9

Average list price:

Average sale price:

Low $359,900 / High $468,900

Low $361,000 / High $586,500 Avg. days on market: 61



Did you know? Did you know the St. Albert Leader made over 600 s’mores at the 2013 Snowflake Festival.

*The above area market averages represent the trailing 3-month averages, except where otherwise indicated, of single-family homes only as of the Friday prior to publication week. Data is provided by CRAIG PILGRIM of RE/MAX Real Estate (St. Albert), member of the Real Estate Association of Edmonton. Data does not include condos, townhomes or apartments, and does not differentiate between styles of homes. All efforts are made to ensure data is accurate for information purposes, but please consult a licensed real estate agent for additional market information.*Did you know source: City of St. Albert website, St. Albert 2012 Census


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013


The re-gifting guide NATALIE MANZOCCO Sun Media News Services

Sometimes it’s just too tempting to resist: You’ve just received a well-intentioned gift that’s not quite for you, but you know your aunt would just love it. Or maybe you’re heading out the door without a gift to a party, and your eyes fall on that bottle or that serving tray you just unwrapped ... The re-gift, despite the feelings of shame or sheepishness associated with passing on an unwanted gift, has become a holiday institution. It’s a convenient strategy, and a surprisingly effective one: The original giver is none the wiser, you get rid of something you don’t want, and the new recipient is thrilled by their new gift. But is it polite? The Emily Post Institute,

MORE WINE: Alcohol preferences can be particular, but if you’re not sure of your RE-GIFTING giftee’s tastes, wine may be the TIPS: safest bet — even if they’re not big on vino, they may appreciate having it on DO: hand the next time Thank the original they entertain. gift-giver warmly and Try to find out if genuinely. “That’s so nice they’re fans of of you” is a classic red or white, if standby. you can. (Penfolds 2010 Bin 389 Cabernet Shiraz, South Australia, DON’T: at most liquor stores).

which has been doling out advice on etiquette for five generations, says passing on gifts isn’t ideal — it’s “a symptom of the surplus of ‘stuff’ many people find themselves with, and their desire to be practical,” their experts write on their website. However, acknowledging that people will do it anyway, the institute suggests three rules of re-gifting: Make sure that the new recipient might actually like it; that the gift is in brand-new condition; and that the original giver didn’t take great care to choose it or buy it for you. These gifts have broad appeal, and might be the easiest to pass on. Just make sure you didn’t give the same gift back to the original person — in all the holiday hustle and bustle, you just might forget.

Give within the same circles. If you got an office Secret Santa present you’re not so hot on, put it aside for family, your child’s teacher — anyone who won’t find out where it came from.

HOUSEWARES: Who can say no to a handsome wooden serving board? Cheese knives, salad bowls and other decorative kitchen items work particularly well as host gifts. For an extra-classy touch, throw in a nice bottle of wine with that corkscrew or a bag of beans with that coffee grinder. (Gold cheese knives, $24.50, Indigo,

CANDLES: Light, fresh scents are the least likely to offend, or go seasonal with pine or cinnamon scents. Remember: If they have a sensitivity to fragrances, this isn’t the gift for them. Set aside soy ones for the vegans and green-loving folk in your life. (Boxed scented candle, $14.99, Homesense,

Check carefully for regifting clues. Make sure there isn’t a card hiding inside the box BATH PRODUCTS AND PERFUME: Plenty of — or, worse, an inscription soap sets, fancy shower gels and perfumes are in on the first page circulation this time of year. Just remember: Once of a book. you take the cellophane off that perfume box, it’s no longer regift-eligible. Stop by your local fragrance counter to figure out whether or not you like the scent, or read reviews on sites like (Philosophy The Cookie Exchange gift set, $33, Shoppers Drug Mart,

“Bless This Mess” HOUSE CLEANING GIFT CERTIFICATES A clean house all wrapped up for you!

780.902.6377 Serving St. Albert for 11 years


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DON’T: Try to re-gift the ungiftable. If you absolutely can’t stand that hideous sweater, don’t try to foist it off on some other poor soul.

“from Couch to Stage” Series 1 info: 780.222.0102

January 11 10am-5pm Kinsmen Hall

One Day Acting Workshop Instructor: Michele Freilig Register online at This workshop has been made possible by Theatre Alberta, The Foundation for the Arts & Christie Lites Sales


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

















This week in history and celebrity birthdays

The United States House of Representatives approves two articles of impeachment against President Bill Clinton, charging him with lying under oath and obstructing justice.

24 27












DEC. 20, 1957



While spending the holidays at Graceland, rock ’n’ roll star Elvis Presley receives his draft notice from the U.S. Army.

















DEC. 21, 1948

2 Ta-ta, in Tuscany 3 Concert organizer 4 Like ghost towns 5 Soundness of mind 6 Penned 7 Fighting force 8 Wander idly 9 Supermodels, e.g. 10 1984 Tom Hanks film 11 Happy or rush follower 12 Money for the poor 13 Jane Lynch TV series 19 Outlaw chasers 21 Hard to come by 24 Cut, as an athlete 25 Part of NRA 26 Large bay window 27 Shoot from hiding

28 29 30 32 35 36 38 39 41 42

Right of entry 44 Supporter of the Free of frost arts Parking lot sign 45 Bee Gees hit Brown, perhaps "____ Talkin'" Contest for hot 46 Parched rods 47 Toot one's own Hopefulness horn Shore bird 48 Speeder's File menu penalty command 49 Hollywood Suitable for headliner marriage 50 Ripped Walmart 52 Line on a receipt competitor Answer to Last Week's Crossword

























DEC. 22, 1808

Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony is given its world premiere in Vienna, Austria.

DEC. 23, 1964

Pearl Jam singer Eddie Vedder — real name Edward Louis Severson — is born in Evanston, Ill.

DEC. 24, 1923

U.S. President Calvin Coolidge lights the first-ever national Christmas tree on the grounds of the White House.

DEC. 25, 1914

On Christmas Day, German and Allied troops cease their fighting in the First World War to sing carols, exchange gifts and even play friendly games of soccer.

Super-fast maglev trains ride on a cushion of air that’s just 1/3 of an inch thick, using the repelling forces of magnets. (

Edited by Margie E. Burke

                     Copyright 2013 by The Puzzle Syndicate

Actor Samuel L. Jackson — who is best known for his roles in films like Pulp Fiction, The Avengers and Snakes on a Plane — is born in Washington, D.C.

Copyright 2013 by The Puzzle Syndicate


Difficulty : Easy

DEC. 19, 1998










23 25


by Margie E. Burke


• Spot the Difference? •

DOWN 1 Carney and Rubinstein


There are five differences between these two photos. Can you spot them all?

ACROSS 1 Etcher's need 5 Metal-shaping tool 10 Kind of carpet 14 Wintry coating 15 Orderly formation 16 Campaign event 17 Military melody 18 Writer's pseudonym 20 Pi Beta Phi, for one 22 Sandpaper grade 23 Put on cloud nine 24 Barbershop singer 25 Prayer beads 27 Awning, e.g. 31 Hopping mad 32 Nasty, as a remark 33 Reading room 34 Send packing 35 Newspaper type 36 Leave out 37 Floral garland 38 Fly off the handle 39 Cumin, for one 40 Stretch out 42 Rip to shreds 43 Strongly suggest 44 Shipboard crane 45 Talk on and on 48 It's nearest the bow 51 Irksome 53 Division word 54 Serum container 55 Rapids transit? 56 Surgery souvenir 57 Barely beat 58 Go all out 59 Only


HOW TO SOLVE:        Answer to Last Week's Sudoku

        

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Regular Sunday service

29 Regular Sunday service



Photo: IAN KUCERAK, Sun Media News Services



Modified weekday service Modified weekday service No service



Modified weekday service Modified weekday service plus FREE New Year’s Eve service after 6 p.m.

No service


No service


        

Saskatoon Blades centre Cameron Hebig (9) falls into Edmonton Oil Kings goaltender Tristan Jarry at Rexall Place on Sunday.


        

ANSWERS: 1. Home Depot logo removed from boards; 2. Stanchions changed from blue to red; 3. Shoulder logo removed; 4. Nameplate removed; 5. Sleeve stripes changed to orange.

The Weekly Crossword



Modified weekday service Regular Saturday service

2 HOLIDAY OFFICE HOURS Regular service resumes

Monday to Friday | 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. December 24 and December 31 | 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. December 25, 26 and January 1 | Office closed

Visit for complete schedules



Answers online at

Compiled by Leader staff












Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013



1) Played by Jim Carrey ACROSS 2) Elf star Will 3) ____ on 34th Street 4) A Christmas Story main character 5) Love, ____ 7) Home ____ 6) Christmas action classic 9) The ____ Before Christmas 7) Jingle All the Way’s Schwarzenegger 10) It’s A ____ Life 8) ____ Saves Christmas 11) Trading ____ 12) The Santa ____ 14) Bad Santa star Billy Bob 13) Christmas with the ____ 16) Christmas Vacation family 15) The ____ Christmas Carol 17) The Polar ____

Running out of time & ideas? Why not personalize a seat at the Arden Theatre! Your message, engraved on a silver plaque, will celebrate the special people in your life and help support the Arden Theatre.

Best Grandparents Ever! -The Smith Family

Cultural Services

Information: or visit (Get Involved tab)


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013


Area’s first Bitcoin exchange opens GLENN COOK

Photo: Sun Media News Services

St. Albert Leader

As the popularity of bitcoins continues to grow, an Edmonton-area store is looking to help consumers get started with the digital currency. Aaron McDermand is the owner of Aaron Buys Gold in Sherwood Park, and has set up the Capital Region’s first bitcoin exchange, where bitcoin holders can buy and sell the digital currency — which can be stored in digital wallets on mobile devices or hard drives — in person rather than over the Internet. “Previously in Edmonton, bitcoins were really hard to get. You’d have to go meet a guy in a coffee shop; he would have them and you would give him the cash. It was sort of a shady way to do it,” McDermand said. “Now they can come into a store, pay cash or pay debit, and we help them set everything up.” Bitcoins have been gaining in popularity since they were created in 2009 because the currency — which acts like an online equivalent of cash — allows people to pay for goods without involving payment processors like credit

card companies or banks, and they allow buyers to remain anonymous. “A lot of guys are buying them as speculation, of course, hoping that they’re going to go up. There’s a lot of people that have been made millionaires by bitcoins,” McDermand said. “As a payment system, there are a lot of advantages,” he added. “The payments are really quick; they’re almost instant.”

McDermand’s business has an added bonus, though, as he will trade bitcoins for gold, silver or platinum bullion. “We found that a lot of our clients that bought gold and silver started talking to us about bitcoins, wondering if we knew how they could get them,” he said. “That’s how we ended up getting into bitcoins. … They like to hold their wealth outside the banks.” McDermand also helps customers set

up digital wallets to store bitcoins and walks them through the basics of using and trading the currency. There are currently more than 12 million bitcoins in circulation. The value of a single bitcoin topped $1,200 US in late November, but as of last week, had slipped back to about $875 US. While bitcoins have mainly been used online up until now, more and more brick-and-mortar business are starting to accept them for payment, including Café Remedy in Edmonton. Also, a dentist in Vancouver recently announced he would accept Bitcoins as payment, as did the University of Nicosia on the island of Cyprus. The digital nature of the currency can also be a drawback, though, as in the case of a British man who threw out his hard drive earlier this year, only later remembering that it stored his digital wallet, which contains almost $7.5 million worth of bitcoins. Aaron Buys Gold is located at 947 Ordze Rd. in Sherwood Park and is open six days a week. Check out their website, which contains bitcoin instructional videos, at www.

New airport mall will fill retail gap, says U of A prof

DAVE LAZZARINO Sun Media News Services

Edmonton’s newly proposed airport outlet mall will help to fill a retail gap, says a University of Alberta expert. “Edmonton is a fast-growing, relatively affluent, relatively young city and that means that we’re a good place for retail,” said Dr. Kyle Murray, director of the University of Alberta’s School of Retailing. The Outlet Collection at EIA — the 85-store outlet mall planned for 2016 on land near the Edmonton International Airport — will draw crowds because Edmonton is already under-retailed, he said, and with expected growth trends to continue, the new mall should fair well without drawing business away from existing retailers. “It’s always hard to say until they’re built and you see what traffic patterns are like, but South Edmonton Common right now is an incredibly busy shopping environment by almost all of the measures you normally look at,” explained Murray.

“A lot of the stores in that development are doing the most sales per square foot than they do as a chain in Canada. And West Edmonton Mall is sort of the same.” He said the new outlet will probably attract business from smaller regions south of the city and possibly bring more traffic to the city from the north. “It makes it much easier as you’re flying through Edmonton to maybe stay over one night and do a bunch of Christmas shopping on your way back to a more remote community that maybe doesn’t have much in the way of retail at all,” he said. The potential doesn’t come without risk, however. Whether bricks and mortar is the way to go in the future remains to be seen. “I don’t think real estate companies are giving enough credit to the threat of online shopping,” said Murray. During the late 1990s, when worries escalated about the impact of Internet shopping on bricks and mortar stores, Murray said the impact was less than expected. But that only gave retailers and builders

false confidence in physical stores. “When you build something like this, it’s a long-term development. We’re talking 30-40 years would be the normal horizon for something like that,” he said. “When you talk to retailers now, they’re actually getting very nervous about the huge amounts of market share that are moving online in some categories.” Some comfort may be found in population increases, though. Murray said if the population manages to double, the market could still handle more stores than exist today, meaning the outlet mall might not be the last of its kind to make Edmonton home.


Down 0.03

94.27 US S&P/TSX

Down 143.85



Down 36.81

4,023.68 DOW

Down 97.87

15,875.26 GOLD

Down 27.10

$1,231.70 US OIL

Down 1.24

$97.30 US

Photo: Sun Media News Services

Figures as of 3 p.m. Tuesday, compared to one week prior. For information purposes only.

Call us today for all your St. Albert Real Estate Needs


780-990-6266 Direct 780-460-8558

Pierre Hebert


Guy Hebert


Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Youth jobs get boost


The Action for Healthy Communities had an extra reason to celebrate at its year-end party. Edmonton-Centre MP Laurie Hawn announced $324,000 for the organization’s youth employment program Youth Skills, Youth Jobs on Saturday. “What’s really important is the organizations out in the communities who are on the people’s side,” Hawn said. “Government can only announce programs and write cheques.” The money will be used for the eighth intake for the employment program, with 10 people between the ages of 18 and 28. Facilitator Kristi Campbell said one individual has been working on public speaking. At the beginning, she couldn’t speak in front of the group of 12. Now she presents in front of the class and is working towards a goal of being employed as an administrative assistant. “We’ve been working with her one-on-one and challenging her to stand up and present whenever she has the chance to,” she said. Others come to the program with no idea of what they want to do with their life, and the program narrows down a career focus. Keren Schoenberger, program co-ordinator, said the four-month program teaches youth and new Canadians life skills, money management, and career planning. At the end of classroom work, participants are paired with employers for a six-week work experience. “Our success rate has been about 90 per cent,” Schoenberger said. Graduates of the program have looked towards social work, administrative assisting and the trades. Others prepare to go back to school. Some have more stable housing. Graduates either go back to school or find full-time employment. The federal government put forward $70 million in the next three years for the Career Focus program and for 5,000 paid internships for post-secondary graduates. The Youth Employment Strategy includes Skills Link, Career Focus and Canada Summer Jobs programs.

Shopping getting you down this Christmas? concerned. They will buy what they debt has just reached all- time highs believe will help them look good in in Canada. Special to the Leader the eyes of others. Another type of OK, so what do we need to do to If you’re like a lot of Albertans impulse buyer may be one who has get our spending under control? you’ve probably found yourself in difficulty controlling their emotions To get a professional opinion the Christmas stampede to making it more difficult for them to on this matter, I spoke local shopping malls. resist urges to spend. A third type of to Wendy Jebb-Waples That’s no surprise — impulse buyer is one who visualizes of WJW Counselling in according to one report in themselves as being happy if they St. Albert. According the December 2013 edition had a particular item; this is the to Wendy, spontaneous of Alberta Venture, retailers shopper who says they shop for fun. urges to purchase and achieve 20 per cent of their So if you are a comfort shopper consume often compete sales in December. In 2012 and get a sudden urge to buy with the practical necessity in Alberta, that represented something, you may be buying as a of that product. When about $14 billion of way to experience pleasure which is this happens, it could be Dar shopping, or about $3,500 likely an impulse purchase. considered impulse buying, Schwanbeck a phenomenon that is for every man, women and To curb this habit, plan your NABI child. Christmas purchases around how becoming very prevalent This madness — as I much you want to spend and what in our society. The problem would call it — got me to thinking you will buy each person. A list with impulse buying is that it is an about a couple of books that I read in immediate gratification that does is mandatory before you head 2013: Enough by John Naish and The not recognize the consequences. out. Once at the stores when you Wealthy Barber Returns by David find yourself picking up an item Impulse buying is often related Chilton. These two authors both ask yourself, did I plan to buy to anxiety, unhappiness and a make a similar argument that, when disregard for the consequences of this? If not, put it back; and avoid faced with an immediately accessible our spending; therefore, temptation by only visiting temptation, our emotionally the stores on your list. controlling our impulse dominated (reptilian) brains will Overall, be aware of shopping can actually win out over common sense and our improve your psychological what type of shopper you best laid plans. “I want it and I want are, if you look around the well-being. it now,” will be the course of action. house and see an array of This time of year poses It seems that we humans have items you don’t use or find additional problems for been hard-wired to deal with yourself with anxiety from those impulse buyers due immediate needs, opportunities over spending, you may be to the marketing styles and threats, such as running away an impulse shopper. that are present; numerous from sabre-toothed tigers. While sales, television advertising Wendy Jebb-Waples I haven’t seen any big cats lately, demonstrating how happy Counsellor unfortunately this same response Wendy Jebb-Waples is you could be if you owned mechanism now applies to that latest a particular product, all a counsellor in private high-tech gadget or some cool new practice with WJW Counselling, a this heightens the urgency for the jeans — if the emotional excitement NABI business, and an Instructor impulse buyer. is high enough, we will find a way to in the Social Work Faculty at In order to curb this shopping buy it, despite our best intentions to MacEwan University. impulse, it’s best to understand what spend less. impulsive shopping is and how you In short, many of us seem to be Dar Schwanbeck is the Managing may be affected. addicted to shopping. Maybe this Director at NABI and a Certified Impulse buyers are often more is why consumer saving is low and Management Consultant. social, status conscious and image


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Wise customers read the fine print: •, *, ‡, §, ▲, ¥ The Motor Trend Truck of the Year Sales Event offers are limited time offers which apply to retail deliveries of selected new and unused models purchased from participating dealers on or after December 3, 2013. Offers subject to change and may be extended without notice. All pricing includes freight ($1,695) and excludes licence, insurance, registration, any dealer administration fees, other dealer charges and other applicable fees and taxes. Dealer trade may be necessary. Dealer may sell for less. •$27,498 Purchase Price applies to 2014 Ram 1500 Quad Cab SXT 4x4 (23A+AGR) only and includes $8,500 Consumer Cash and $1,500 Holiday Bonus Cash. *$8,500 in Consumer Cash Discounts are available on new 2014 Ram 1500 models (excluding Reg Cab). See your dealer for complete details. ‡4.29% purchase financing for up to 96 months available on the new 2014 Ram 1500 Quad Cab SXT 4x4 model to qualified customers on approved credit through Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank and TD Auto Finance. Example: 2014 Ram 1500 Quad Cab SXT 4x4 with a Purchase Price of $27,498 (including applicable Consumer Cash and Bonus Cash Discounts) financed at 4.29% over 96 months with $0 down payment equals 208 bi-weekly payments of $156 with a cost of borrowing of $5,010 and a total obligation of $32,508. §2014 Ram 1500 Crew Cab Laramie Longhorn (EcoDiesel) shown. Late availability. ▲The Make No Payments for 90 Days offer applies to retail customers who finance a new 2014 Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge or Ram vehicle (except 2014 Dodge Avenger CVP and Dodge Viper) or eligible 2013 Dodge Dart, Ram Heavy Duty or Fiat model at a special fixed rate on approved credit through Royal Bank of Canada, TD Auto Finance or Scotiabank between December 10, 2013 and January 2, 2014. Monthly payments will be deferred for 60 days and contracts will be extended accordingly. Interest charges will not accrue during the first 60 days of the contract. Customers will be responsible for any required down payment, licence, registration and insurance costs at time of contract. Some conditions apply. See your dealer for complete details. ¥Holiday Bonus Cash of up to $1,500 is available on most new 2013 Dodge Dart, Ram Heavy Duty trucks and FIAT models (excluding the FIAT 500 Pop and Ram Cab & Chassis) and on most new 2014 Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and FIAT models, excluding the following: Chrysler 200 LX, Dodge Dart, Grand Caravan CVP, Journey CVP/SE, Avenger CVP, Viper, Jeep Compass Sport 4x2/4x4, Patriot Sport 4x2/4x4, Cherokee, Ram 1500 Reg Cab trucks, Ram Cab & Chassis, Ram Cargo Van, Ram ProMaster, FIAT 500 Pop, 500C, 500T and Abarth models. Bonus Cash will be deducted from the negotiated price after taxes. See your dealer for complete details. **Based on Chrysler Group internal fuel economy ratings. �Based on Automotive News classification and 2014 Ram 1500 3.6 L V6 4x2 and 8-speed transmission. 11.4 L/100 km (25 MPG) City and 7.8 L/100 km (36 MPG) Highway. Based on 2013 EnerGuide fuel consumption guide ratings published by Natural Resources Canada. Government of Canada test methods used. Your actual fuel consumption will vary based on powertrain, driving habits and other factors. Ask your dealer for complete EnerGuide information. =Based on longevity of entire Ram large pickup segment compared to all competitive large pickups on the road since 1988. Longevity based on R. L. Polk Canada, Inc. Canadian Vehicles in Operation data as of November 1, 2013 for model years 1988-2013 for all large pickups sold and available in Canada over the last 25 years. TMThe SiriusXM logo is a registered trademark of SiriusXM Satellite Radio Inc.











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32 Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

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St. Albert Leader Dec 19, 2013  
St. Albert Leader Dec 19, 2013  

St. Albert Leader Dec 19, 2013