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Thunder Bay’s arts & culture alternative


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Close to Home Shopping Local for the Holidays


Holiday Fondue p 14


New Year’s Eve p 17


Local Music Videos p 31


Public Art in the City p 31 The Walleye


Celebrate the delights of this holiday season in High Definition.



Find out if Tbaytel Digital TV is in your neighbourhood. Visit an Authorized Tbaytel Digital TV Dealer Call 807-623-4400 | 1-800-264-9501 Digital TV service is subject to availability where access and technology permit. Rental terms and conditions apply to free Master HD PVR and Additional HD equipment. In the event of cancellation, equipment must be returned to Tbaytel or regular charge out rates apply. All taxes extra. Promotional pricing for new residential customers only. Must not have been a Digital TV subscriber within the last six months. Prices and channels subject to change without notice. Offer ends January 15, 2012.

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11/21/11 2:25:50 PM

Shop Local

walleye the

I love it when I walk into Maltese (my neighbourhood grocery) and they know me by name. In years past, they have cooed over the baby in my arms and now they ask how that baby, now a boy, is doing in school, and sometimes give him some candy or a cookie on the sly (wink, wink). They ask me about my work at The Walleye and how teaching is going. They seem to genuinely care. It’s a fuzzy feeling, and it may seem sentimental, but I like it and I don’t want it any other way.

Thunder Bay’s arts & culture alternative

Editor-in-chief Darren McChristie Editor Tiffany Jarva: Contributing Editor Rebekah Skochinski Photographers Darren McChristie, John-Paul Marion, Storm Carroll, Chris Merkley, Dave Koski, Tara George, Amy Vervoort, Uriel Lubuk Copy Editors Amy Jones, Nancy Saunders Art Director Dave Koski, R.G.D.: Business Manager Doug McChristie Sales Manager:

Across the city, there are many local groceries and shops in our communities that make the experience of shopping more connected and more human. In our “Shop Local” cover story, we suggest that you take the time this holiday season to explore the diverse shops in a bunch of different neighbourhoods, from Westfort Village to the outlying rural communities. Also in this issue, we highlight some local CDs, books and handmade items perfect for personalizing your gift-giving, as well as supporting talented local artisans, musicians, artists and writers.

Advertising Sales Tracy Sadgrove: The Walleye is a free monthly publication distributed on racks throughout Thunder Bay and region. Reproduction of any article, photograph or artwork without written permission is strictly forbidden. Views expressed herein are those of the author exclusively. Copyright © 2011 by Superior Outdoors Inc. All Rights Reserved. Editorial and Advertising: Submissions must be accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Superior Outdoors cannot be held responsible for unsolicited material. Superior Outdoors Inc. Suite 242, 1100 Memorial Avenue, Thunder Bay, Ontario P7B 4A3 Telephone (807) 624-1215 ; Fax (807) 623-5122 E-mail:

Holiday time is often synonymous with baking time: shortbread cookies, gingerbread, good old rum-soaked Christmas cake, coffee bread and more. And if you’re not a baker, or you simply don’t have time to bake, we are lucky because Thunder Bay has a bounty of locally owned, ethnically diverse, good old-fashioned bakeries. In this issue, we visit a few of these sweet establishments (many have been around for decades!), from mainstay European Bakery on Simpson Street, to the new kid in town, gluten-free Peartree Bakery on S. Cumberland.

Printed in Canada Superior Outdoors Inc donates 1% of all sales to 1% for the Planet

Dr. Stewart Kennedy, founder of “Stewie’s Bash” charity fundraiser Photo by Dave Koski Special Thanks to Bloomers and the Brownhouse

Tania Pynn

On the Cover How much do people love The Walleye?

Tania and Bruce Pynn (a local oral and maxillofacial surgeon) recently travelled to Easter Island with The Walleye and emailed us this photo while on vacation. Thanks for sharing!

For the most part, the holiday decorations are up across the city, and cozy shops are ready for business. Take a stroll, linger over coffee or tea at your favourite haunt, and enjoy what our communities have to offer. And speaking of community, thanks to the many readers, contributors, businesses and arts + cultural organizations that continue to support our efforts at The Walleye—warmest wishes to our readers and supporters this holiday season! TJ

The Walleye


Chris Merkley



6 CoverStory: A Tale of Two Cities

■ 9 Editor’s Gift Picks ■ 10 Books ■ 11 Shop Music ■ 12 Bread, Buns and Beyond FOOD

■ 14 Holiday Fondue ■ 15 Beaujolais Nouveau ■ 15 Schnap to it! ■ 16 Cupcake Café CityScene

■ 19 Stocking the Youth Cupboard ■ 19 Get Your Knit On


■ 28 A Picasso in the North Country


■ 34 Eleanor Drury Children’s

A Novel by Jim Stevens


■ 29 Linda Brown ■ 30 Q&A with Michael Christie ■ 31 Making Local Music Videos ■ 31 Dis.Location -DefSup

■ 20 Empire Lies ■ 21 TBSO ■ 21 Thunder Bay in Concert ■ 22 Chantal Kreviazuk Regional Juried Art Exhibition ■ 23 Paul Brandt ■ 40 Local Art in the City ■ 24 Burning the Sky by Gord Ellis: In Praise of Gordon Lightfoot

■ 25 Ohbijou in the City ■ 27 Sam Roberts Band ■ 27 Arkells Rock the Outpost

■ 17 N  ew Year’s Eve ■ 18 Winter Hikes ■ 18 Finding the Perfect Tree..


■ 32 EcoSuperior’s Question

Theatre Celebrates 30 Years

■ 35 A Christmas Carol at FWHP ■ 35 39 Steps at Magnus ■ 14 Drink of the Month ■ 37 ZYGOTE bop ■ 26 Off the Wall Reviews ■ 38 December EVENTS ■ 41 The Wall ■ 42 The EYE

of the Month - Coffee Makers

■ 33 Green Christmas ■ 33 Airport Solar Park

by Dogsled




The Walleye





Sing Me to Heaven December 4 St. Paul’s United Church

Join the Dulcisono Women’s Choir for an afternoon of music to lift the spirit and celebrate the season. The choir’s name, Dulcisono, is Italian for “sweet sound”—the product of their harmonies and the music of guest instrumentalists Sean Jesseau (percussion), Rob Van Wyck (flute), and Kevin MacLeod (flute, guitar, and percussion). Advance tickets are available at Coran’s, Finnport, and St. Paul’s United Church, and are $15 each or four for $50 for adults, and $5 for students; tickets at the door are $18 for adults, and $5 for students, children under the age of 12 are free.


Aboriginal Fine Arts & Crafts Christmas Gift Show & Sale December 6 - 10 Victoriaville Centre

Don’t miss the 10th Annual Aboriginal Fine Arts & Crafts sale at Victoriaville Mall, presented by the Aboriginal Artworks Group of Northern Ontario. The sale is the largest gathering of Aboriginal artisans in northern Ontario and will run from 10 am –5 pm each day. Each year, the artisans bring an impressive assortment of handcrafted hats, mitts, moccasins, purses and jewelry. There is also original artwork and many unique items, such as little tikinagans (sold with dolls). Admission is free.



TBSO Home for the Holidays

December 10 Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Part of the TBSO’s popular music or “pops” series, this concert is a holiday tradition and one of their most popular presentations of the season. You’ll hear all your holiday favourites including “Nutcracker Suite,” “Hallelujah Chorus,” “Sleigh Ride,” and “White Christmas.” The performance will be conducted by Arthur Post and will feature the Thunder Bay Symphony Chorus, Rafiki Youth Choir and Studio One Dance. Word is there will also be a special visitor from the North Pole! Tickets are $45 for adults, $15 for students and $20 for balcony seats.


Ours to Celebrate: Introducing Prince Arthur’s Landing to the Community December 16 Prince Arthur’s Landing

Over the past year, the new developments at Prince Arthur’s Landing have started to emerge and, bit by bit, the area has been transformed from a construction site to a park with attractive architecture and eclectic public art installations. On December 16, the City will introduce Prince Arthur’s Landing to our community. Admission is free and activities begin at 6:30 pm, including a welcoming ceremony, skating, children’s activities, artists’ displays, and a great fireworks show at 8 pm. The new Water Garden Pavilion, Baggage Building, and the numerous works of art will be open for people to tour and enjoy. Developed to celebrate the diverse culture and heritage of Thunder Bay, Prince Arthur’s Landing will be a gathering place for our community and an arts space destination. www.


Stewie’s 40th Christmas Fest December 23 Roxy’s Nightclub

In 1971, Stewart “Stewie” Kennedy and a group of his highschool friends vowed to spend every December 23 together and, as a result, Christmas Fest was born. In the years that followed, the party grew and a nominal fee was added to cover the venue and related costs. When the event started to turn a profit, the organizers decided to donate the funds to a local charity. The party will feature live music including performances by Danny Johnson’s 21 Gun Fun and Mood Indigo. After 40 years, Stewie is calling it quits—this will be the last Christmas Fest. Tickets are $20 and are available at Dr. Kennedy’s office (43 North Court Street); proceeds from the event will support Our Kids Count.

The Walleye


CoverStory Wool Socks

Since 1998, Reg and Wymnemia Sobkowich have been knitting and selling a variety of wool socks, mittens, and gloves. Although their business is called The Sock Lady, it is actually Reg who knits the socks. “I’ve been knitting for about 65 years,” says Reg, “since I was about ten-years-old.” Their most popular socks—cool socks— are knit from lighter yarn. They only buy white yarn, which they dye with food colouring and then treat with citric acid to set the colour. According to Wymnemia, the citric acid also makes for softer, more comfortable socks. The socks come in a range of sizes and colours and are machine washable. Visit them at the Country Market; custom orders are welcome. The Sock Lady 688 Leslie Avenue 683-3065

It is the best of times... to embrace our history By Rebekah Skochinski, Tara George, Michelle McChristie, Darren McChristie & Dave Koski

Whether you have lived in Thunder Bay all of your life, or you’re a relatively new import, you will likely have some understanding of our cities’ twinned past as Fort William and Port Arthur. All it really means is that we have twice as much history, twice as many developed neighbourhoods, and, especially at this time of year, twice as many places to shop. Well, actually, even more than twice as many, but we’ll get to that. For now, The Walleye would like to issue a holiday challenge: Make that drive “all the way across town” and explore a part of the city you’ve never explored before, visit a locallyowned store you’ve never been into, and appreciate each area for its unique characteristics and charm. NB: We started to list off the shops by area, and no surprise—there were simply too many! Might we suggest going with friends and family to make a day of it. Many places offer complimentary gift-wrapping, and a cup of something warm to accompany the friendly conversation. And hey, it’s Thunder Bay, you’re bound to bump into at least three people you know.


The Walleye

Joyce Seppala Designs 508 East Victoria Avenue 624-0022

Ostrom Packs

Since opening his first shop near the banks of the Whitefish River in 1987, Bill Ostrom has adapted to the needs of outdoor enthusiasts. As a graduate of L.U.’s Outdoor Recreation program and an avid paddler, hiker, and skier, Ostrom understands the needs for comfort, practicality, durability, and style. A good canoe pack, day pack, or computer briefcase should last a lifetime, and Ostrom offers the option for customized fitting and colours. The packs are designed and sewn in Thunder Bay, making Ostrom Outdoors the only pack manufacturer based in Canada. Ostrom Outdoors 404 Balmoral Street 473-4499

Michelle McChristie

A Tale of Two Cities

Trained in Haute Couture in England, Joyce Seppala has been designing and creating clothing since 1990. She sells her products locally, nationally and internationally. Her artistic designs are created to enhance the female form by using asymmetric and bias cuts, and layering and mixing wools, linens, and manmade fibers. Seppala specializes in what she calls, “short runs and one off pieces.” Over the years, Seppala has mentored several fashion design students who have “moved on to bigger and better things”—a testament to her talents are willingness to share them with others. Her collection offers a variety of textures and colours and her designs are comfortable, elegant, and timeless.

Michelle McChristie

Joyce Seppala Designs

Fresh Wreaths and Garlands

A beautiful wreath made of magnolia leaves and twigs caught my attention and drew me in to see more of the floral works by Camille Overmeer of The Camellia. Camille aims to “take care of the decorating end of things” during your holiday season with her handmade wreaths, garlands, and arrangements. Her craft is inspired by time spent in Europe—specifically Holland— but she tries to use greens that are native to the Thunder Bay area. The Camellia also carries spa products created by other artisans, and other decorative items.

Knit and Felt Hats

Handcrafted Electric Guitars

Threads in Time 426 East Victoria Avenue 626-9023

wild honey guitar company 473-4025

Margaret Duncan is a master knitter at local fibre arts store—Threads in Time. Her winter creations draw a crowd, eager to try on her stylish and beautifully created knit and felted toques, hats, and headbands. There is bound to be something to suit everyone, with styles ranging from brim and cloche hats to ear flap and slouchy toques. As expected, a talent such as Margaret’s is not just limited to toques—her winter wear also include shawls and bags.

The Camellia 30/32 Haquoil Road 475-3551

Tara George

Tara George

Tara George


Uniquely designed and handcrafted electric guitars are produced through the collaborative effort of husband and wife team Eric and Lisa Hanson, owners of wild honey guitar company. Eric is the woodcrafter of the pair, and produces the guitars from scratch. When he has completed his creation, the guitar is passed onto Lisa, who does the embellishing with a variety of media. Lisa explained that she “loves to collaborate with people to make something unique to them.” Custom orders are welcome.

A collection of sterling silver, base metals, precious and semi-precious stones, Swarovski Crystals, and fresh water pearls are the basic components of Andrea Goold’s jewellery designs. Andrea’s start in jewellery-making was prompted by her “love of the elements,” and that—combined with her eye for combining these elements—results in stunning pieces that are timeless. Craft shows are the primary outlet for Andrea’s designs (necklaces, bracelets, and earrings); however she also takes custom orders.

Tara George

Tara George

Metals and Stones

Ag Designs 472-2422

Organic Skin Care

Bare Organics has the product and the packaging, which makes it the perfect gift or stocking stuffer. Karen Kerk-Courtney creates organic skin care products using natural food-grade ingredients such as flowers that she grows in her own garden, plant and vegetable oils, and beeswax. Her products, to name a few, include everything from soaps and all-in-one cleaners, to healing balms and bath salts. An organic skin care line dedicated specifically to babies has also been established. Bare Organics Inc. 1258 Moving Post Road, Gorham 683-6129

The Urban Bird

Thunder Bay’s newest home, garden, and nature boutique. After six months at the Thunder Bay Country Market, owner Lauren Ischkin decided that her business was taking flight and needed a permanent space—check out the grand opening on December 6. One product that has become a favourite of bird-lovers is “The Right Stuff” Premium Wild Bird Seed. The mix is packed with birds’ favourite foods, including three different types of sunflower seeds, safflower, white millet, nyjer, and more. It’s a high-oil combination will attract a large variety of birds to your feeder. The seed is offered in four, nine and 20-pound bags. The Urban Bird 112 East Frederica Street 251-8970  The Walleye



Vintage Bird Houses

Kenswood - Wood Turning Specialist

Tim Ross - Blade Smith

Hand-crafted by Leslie Bailey of Vintage Pixie Studio, these bird houses are fabricated from salvaged materials. Vintage hardware, like faucets, doorknobs, and hinges are repurposed as perches for birds and also give the bird houses a one-of-a-kind design. Bailey adds vines to each birdhouse which creates a look that blends into a garden or wooded landscape. “Some birds use the vine in building their nests,” says Bailey. “People bring back their houses to be ‘re-vined,’” she adds. The bird houses are completely functional and range in price from $30-75.

Ken McIlwain turns wood into truly one-of-a-kind natural pieces, literally. Using a segmented method of wood turning on a lathe, Ken creates multi-coloured bowls, jewellery, shaving kits, pens, home decor pieces—even pet urns—all from his home workshop in Thunder Bay.

Tim Ross of Ross Custom Knives makes handcrafted edged tools—from kitchen utility knives to knives forged out of railway spikes, beautifully textured Damascus blades and a giant Bowie knife that Tim jokes “would scare Crocodile Dundee.” Tim also makes a selection of knives out of wire-rope called wire-rope damascus. He explains that “the high level of quality-control that goes into producing wire-rope makes it an excellent choice for knife construction.” Tim’s knives have a weight and comfort in hand that speaks of the joy of the knifemaker’s art that he puts into each of them. Ross Custom Knives range in price from $50–the limit of your imagination and budget.

Vintage Pixie Studio 132 Cumming Street 622-9627

He mixes the highest quality woods from around the world and, using natural oils and waxes, accentuates the natural grain and colour unique to each species. “There are no repeats. Each piece is truly unique—I never create two exactly the same,” explains Ken, who has been working with wood for over 25 years. Best of all, Kenswood products are affordable. They are available online, and he takes custom orders. Kenswood

Tim Ross Blade Smith Ross Custom Knives 627-5086

Comprehensive Vision Care • Complete Eye Examination $70 • Weekend / Evening Appts Available • Fashionable Eyewear

285-4790 Centrally Located at 1144 Oliver Road (Across from Tim Horton’s)


The Walleye

CoverStory Editor’sPicks

Charity with a Twist

Amy’s Favourite Thing Pet Photos with Santa at The Pet Shack Plan for Tomorrow Calendar

This year, you could blow your $10 office Secret Santa budget on a coffee-shop gift card, or buy Great-Aunt Edna yet another $10 candle for her to throw in her junk drawer. Or, you could make your $10 do double duty and not just give a gift, but also give a little back. Here are two of my favourite ways to do just that. If Great-Aunt Edna considers herself a little dog-crazy, there could be no better gift than the opportunity to get her four-legged family member in on the holiday action. It is in that spirit that The Pet Shack, along with photographer Greg Malo, will be offering Pet Photos with Santa, with all proceeds going to both the George Jeffrey Children’s Centre, and to Local Dog Rescue, a no kill, all-breed rescue in Thunder Bay. And what co-worker doesn’t need a calendar? For the second year in a row, local artist and cancer survivor Deena Martin has produced a calendar of her artwork to raise money for cancer charities. Last year, Martin’s “Plan for Tomorrow” campaign raised close to $20,000 for Relay for Life, and this year all the proceeds from the sale of the calendar are going to Camp Quality, a non-profit organization providing support to children with cancer. Pet Photos with Santa will be available at The Pet Shack, 615 Squier St, December 3rd and 4th from 124pm. For more information, check out Local Dog Rescue on Facebook.

The Multi-Way Dress by Tuija Hansen.

Go Local

Plan for Tomorrow calendars are available at several locations around town, including Shaw Cable, Scotiabank, Steepers Tea, Shout! Media, and Local Colour Gallery, where original prints of the artwork are also for sale. For more information, visit

A few of Rebekah’s favourite things

Tiffany’s favourite thing (s) Every now and again I buy something on the spur of the moment. It’s usually something whimsical. Something fun. Something unique. Two to three years ago I bought the coolest fingerless, tothe-elbow crochet gloves from Red Earth that I still get complimented on whenever I wear them. This year I skipped across Algoma to The Craft Collective on a mission to find a Tuija Hansen MultiWay dress (so fun because it wraps your body in many ways). I had stumbled upon these very cute dresses during the Red Rock Folk Festival, and here they were on a rack in the upstairs shop, amongst many other locally-made treasures and unique finds. There were handmade vintage style hats, toques, jewellery, and what ended up being my spur-of-the-moment purchase: a one-of-a- kind cuff bracelet by Sarah Peters made of recycled cardigan, tulle, silk, leather, rabbit fur and bone. And with a vintage postcard, swaying A cuff bracelet by Sarah Peters. on a safety pin, listing the materials used to make the bracelet, I just couldn’t resist. If you’re looking for gifts that are truly local and unique, it’s worth your while to check out the The Craft Collective, 197 S. Algoma, open seven days a week during their extended holiday hours in December. Check Facebook for more details.

(for stuffing that stocking) My unofficial rule for stocking stuffers is to gift items that are both practical and indulgent. A great example of this is the all-natural Cinnamon Bark Soap from Moss Cottage/The Urban Farmchick for sudsy smells of cinnamon and spice and everything nice. Loose-leaf Bossa Nova oolong tea from Steeper’s provides tasty warmth and comfort in the form of creamy hazelnut and vanilla. And finally, artisans at Chocolate Cow (a peanut and tree nut-free facility in Slate River) create tempting treats like lollies for the kids, rum and raisin bark for those with 18+ tastes, and hand-dipped caramels for the ride ‘round town. My second unofficial rule: always buy extra. The Scoop: Steepers is located on May St. You can shop the Thunder Bay Country Market for both the soap and the chocolate but if you want to avoid the Saturday rush, I recommend Bloomers and the Brownhouse on Archibald for the cow goodies--you can shop there six days a week and buy assorted truffles by the box. The Walleye


Food CoverStory Gamble in Goal

Rocket Fish

by David Nicholson

By Duncan Weller Governor General Award winner Duncan Weller is best known for his work as an author and illustrator of children’s picture books. He possesses the ability to communicate story through images—exceptionally painted with intricate detail, using innovative, individualistic and unique characters. As a visual artist, he tends to use paintings to support his narrative. His most recent publication, Rocket Fish (Victory Press, 2012), challenged him as a writer by removing this support and placing emphasis on creating his surprising and unusual stories using narrative alone. Rocket Fish is a collection of short stories, two novellas and a fable, written over a period of eight years. Eclectic in content, it contains both fiction and non-fiction stories reflecting the author’s experiences and perspective. Weller launched his latest book during his recent art show at Folino’s Gallery in Folino’s Suprette on Algoma St. Copies of Rocket Fish are available at Folino’s, or by visiting Weller’s website at

(River Rocks Publishing, 2011) Reviewed by Amy Jones

Thunder Bay is known for producing more than its fair share of strong NHL stars. Bruce Gamble, the subject of David Nicholson’s Gamble in Goal (River Rocks Publishing, 2011) was no exception. Born and raised in Port Arthur in the 1940s and 1950s, Gamble had a career as a goalie that spanned 14 years and several professional hockey teams at a time when playing between the pipes meant you faced the puck head on, literally—Gamble played without a face mask and often without backup. Packed full of interesting photos and memorabilia, Gamble in Goal is a great read not only for hockey fans, but for anyone interested in the history of Thunder Bay.

West of Wawa by Lisa de Nikolits (Inanna, 2011) Review by Amy Jones

-Jean E Pendziwol

Canadian literature is surprisingly lacking in cross-country road trip stories— perhaps due to the sheer amount of empty space in between our cities and towns. But in West of Wawa (Inanna, 2001), Lisa de Nikolits tackles this very subject, sending her protagonist—a wise-cracking Aussie woman named Benny—on a journey from Toronto to Vancouver on a Greyhound Bus in an attempt to escape the mistakes she’s made in her life. With a fast-paced plot and characters who are complex, messy and sometimes hilarious, West of Wawa reads like a love letter to Canada—the Canada, at least, that exists west of, well... you know.

Go to Giller


The Walleye

OSCAR, The Institutional Cat A Feline Autobiography

Perfect for the bookworms on your list

By Bill MacDonald

Announced in November, Esi Edugyan’s Half-Blood Blues won this year’s coveted Scotiabank Giller Prize, beating out veteran writers like Ondaatje and Gartner. This holiday season, think about giving the book lovers on your list one of this year’s Giller-shortlisted books.

Ever wonder how life at a seniors’ retirement home would look to a tolerant, impartial, perceptive cat? Here’s your answer. Oscar, a foundling who discovers friendly shelter at Gull’s Wing Sanctuary one snow Christmas Eve, settles in and becomes a wise observer. He becomes adept at reporting the humour, sadness, and wants and expectations of the residents. He befriends those who like him, and patiently wins over those who don’t. He unfailingly sees the best in people, sharing their laughter and their tears. He accompanies nurse Villiers on her rounds, does what he can to cheer people up, and listens to their stories. He admires the shenanigans at their craft fairs and garden parties, eavesdrops on conversations in the sunroom, sharing the juicy gossip with us. Nothing disrespectful—just good reporting, done with typical feline warmth and sensuality. A pleasant, comic read in the tradition of Tyke & Dusty, Vive Zigoto, Catwalk and The Great Millennium Mount Everest Cat Expedition, written in MacDonald’s unadorned prose from start to finish. Available at Fireweed and Chapters.

Review by Garth Lowry

CoverStory theTOPfive

Shop Music Diverse Local CD Releases

There is a wide range of local bands who have recently released CDs, or will be doing so very soon—from country boy Scott Skirving’s sophomore release Here I Am, to psychobilly punk rockers Forever Dead’s recently released self-titled album.


Will be getting a

Flu Shot “Getting the flu shot will boost my immune system so I can fight the flu. I don’t want to pass it on to my grandchildren.”

Donna Tomiak

For more info, visit

Empire Lies (see this month’s music profile) have just released a new pop-punk album, I Don’t Think This is Going to Fly. And longtime local folk musician and visual artist Norm Sponchia also had a CD release party in November. Copies of his latest album, Further than I’ve Been, are for sale at The Loop on Algoma.

In the New Year, watch for Alaska Army Band’s new CD and singer songwriter Nick Sherman’s highly anticipated two-years-in-the-making debut album, Drag Your Words Through, produced by Jean-Paul De Roover at Dining Room Studios. A CD release party for Sherman is set for January 20th at the Black Pirates Pub.

Two Great Gift Cards One Great Hotel Gift Card

Inn Club

Give the gift of great food and hospitality. Valhalla Inn Gift Cards are available in any denomination and can be redeemed for any of our hotel services including Timbers Restaurant and the all new Runway 25 Steaklounge. And our Inn Club Rewards Card lets you save and earn valuable reward points for everything from rooms to meals. Plus, receive special discounts from our hotel partners. Each Inn Club Rewards Card comes with over $600 in value for just $240. (includes tax)

Let our Chef do the Holiday Cooking For You Ask about our all inclusive Holiday Turkey Dinner take-out package including turkey with chestnut and sage stuffing, gravy, whipped potatoes, mesclun greens with strawberry vinaigrette salad, maple-glazed root vegetables, cranberry sauce, plum pudding and vanilla sauce (serves 8 to 10 people). Specially price at just $149. Please book in advance - quantities are limited. Call Amy at 577-1121, ext. 610.

The Walleye



Bread, Buns and Beyond Chris Merkley

Mark Piovesano

It’s no secret that bakeries abound in our city. And each bakery, from the well-established to the newly-formed, is feeding not only our stomachs but also that most basic need for comfort, and of home. There is hearty bread for making sandwiches, delicious cookies for when you need a taste of something sweet—and of course, the holiday delights, special to this time of year, with nostalgia baked into every bite.

Agostino’s Deli

We talk to some bakery owners and learn what makes them such an important part of our local food culture. Check out for more local bakery info.

Warning: Contains mouth-watering content


230 Lealand Ave 475-0475

Agostino’s uses only quality ingredients. “No preservatives or additives can be found in our product,” says Cosmo. “Our shelf life is a lot shorter and we bake accordingly. You will not buy anything on our shelf that was not baked today.” Product often sells out and when it doesn’t, they make breadcrumbs. They are known for their calabrese and ciabata buns, olive foccacia and a specialty braided bread. A real treat is their thin crust pizza dough, rolled out and frozen and ready to top and heat when you get home. They also bake an assortment of biscotti, saviardi (giant lady fingers), and terrone (nugget candy) for those that like something a little sweeter. -Mark Piovesana


The Walleye

Donato’s Pizza and Bakery Current River Bakery 301 Grenville Avenue 683-8911 Hours: 6 am - 6 pm, Tues-Sat “When you play music it flows,” says bakery owner Heather Savela. “It’s the same with baking. When everything works, everything flows. You have dough on the table. You have dough in the oven. You can feel the dough. Like making music, it’s really handson.” Savela took over Current River Bakery in 1982 with her sister and mother-in-law, and as of 1989 she and her husband have complete ownership. She is the third owner during the 35-year history of the bakery, which was established on July 12, 1977. Coffee bread (pulla, to Finns) is Current River Bakery’s bestseller throughout the year. During the holidays, Christmas bread (with anise) is on par with the coffee bread in terms of popularity. Although their specialty is fresh daily bread, Savela says it was a little surprising last holiday season when piirakka was a big hit, selling more than 50 dozen a day for two weeks prior to Christmas. Prune stars and Christmas tarts are also in high demand during the holiday season. -Tiffany Jarva

161 South Court Street 345-7273 Hours: Mon–Fri, 24 hours Nestled next to Renco Foods on Court Street lies Donato’s Bakery and Pizza. Founded in 1994 by a father and son, the bakery is currently owned and operated by brothers Donato and James Bruno. A true family business, the older generation still helps out—both in the bakery and out front charming customers. The cozy storefront, with gingham-lined baskets and the smell of bread wafting out of the back, is full of ready to eat buns, bread, pies, cinnamon buns and other sweet treats. Plump bags of pizza dough lie waiting in coolers, next to stacks of Donato’s pizza sauce.

Uriel Lubuk

Uriel Lubuk

Chris Merkley

Agostino’s Deli has been in business for over 25 years, serving the needs of the Italian community and those who appreciate finer Italian specialty foods. Founded by Ferruccio Agostino and his wife Maria, it is very much a family business with siblings Cosmo, Joe and Lucia playing an integral part of the operation. They originally outsourced their bakery needs, but about 17 years ago they made the business decision to invest in the ovens and other equipment necessary to produce their own baked goods. “Quality control was the key,” says Cosmo. “We wanted everything to be fresh and of the highest quality.We are not looking for volume—we want to be known for our authentic Italian product, just like you would find in a small Italian village.”

Marlene Wandel

Hours: Tues–Fri, 9am–7pm; Sat, 9am–6pm; Sun, 9am–4pm

European Bakery 640 Simpson Street

Five Star Bakery


225 Pacific Avenue

Hours: Mon–Fri, 10am–5pm; Sat, 9am–1:30pm

623-8463 Hours: Mon–Sun, 9am–5:30pm Driving down Pacific Avenue, it’s hard not to miss the sign featuring the larger-than-life baker holding a plate of freshly baked goodies on the side of one of the neighbourhood buildings. Thought to have been a bakery since 1928, Alecia Lombardo and her brother Walter (Wally) Widla have been running Five Star since 1982. “We are best known for our fresh-made European style bread,” says Lombardo. It’s certainly hard to resist the German dark rye—its deep colour allures and the taste is well balanced and hard to beat in terms of freshness.

Established in 1946 by the Chruszcz family, European Bakery was acquired by the Wronowski’s in 1972. Son Richard, bought it from his father in 1986, and has been carrying on the tradition of typical European goods ever since.

The business has noticed a change in its 17 years of service: people still eat bread, but pizza and pie are bringing more people through the door. Pizza dough and sauce are popular at Donato’s, and those who show up with their pizza pans might be lucky enough to have the pizza dough stretched for them. Hot-from-the-oven pizza for take out or delivery is another option, 24 hours a day from Monday to Friday, and slightly reduced hours on the weekend.

Open seven days a week, Five Star supplies fresh baked goods (both their light and dark rye loaves are very popular) to local grocery stores across the city. Plenty of individuals drop by the shop to get their baking fix. In time for the holidays, fresh gingerbread, cream cones, and angel wings make the perfect companions in a gift box for a Christmas party host or hostess or to simply munch on while decorating this year’s tree.

The bakery is primarily known for their eight varieties of rye bread, which include a sourdough made from light rye, and a German-style loaf made from dark rye. “We don’t use any preservatives or additives like molasses, which is the traditional approach,” he says of their old world recipe. Their raisin bread is also popular. His wife is responsible for the sweeter things, like apple and walnut cakes and poppy seed loaf. “She has to help me sprinkle the poppy seeds because it requires strong wrists,” he says. It is only the two of them working six days a week at the bakery, with ramped-up production for the holiday season. “The three days leading up to Christmas, I maybe get two or three hours of sleep,” the hard working sixty-five year old admits, with the light of retirement a faint glow in the distance.

-Marlene Wandel

-Tiffany Jarva

-Rebekah Skochinski

Mark Piovesano


767-4501 622-5552 Hours: Sun–Fri, 9am–8pm; Sat, 9am–7pm

Holland Bakery 1016 East Victoria Avenue 622-5011

Kivela Bakery

Hours: Tues-Fri 8am-5:30pm; Sat 8am-5pm

111 Secord St

The building that is home to Holland Bakery once belonged to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (of the famed Sherlock Holmes series), and bakery owner Gerald Van Elburg says he still has the deed in Doyle’s handwriting. A second generation owner, Van Elburg’s father opened the bakery in 1959. “I learned from watching my father and I’m very proud to be carrying on the tradition and keeping it in the family,” he says. Several family members work at the bakery, with Van Elburg rising at 1am to start the day. In addition to their “special raisin bread” (his father’s recipe), cinnamon twists, their melt-in-your-mouth doughnuts (a box of six can easily be gone in sixty seconds), and their from-scratch breads, they are gearing up now for the holiday season offering many Dutch specialties. Van Elburg is busy rolling almond paste for their Almond Sticks -- a puffed pastry with an almond paste centre. They will also have Speculaas, a yummy gingerbread cookie that goes well with coffee or tea, along with the traditional shortbread, mincemeat and Christmas cake. -Rebekah Skochinski

345-6233 Hours: Tues–Fri, 9am–3pm, Sat, 9am–2pm Michael Setala is as much a historian as he is a baker. The counters of the Kivela Bakery’s storefront are heaped with binders of photographs and collected clippings—some his, some brought in by customers and friends. He’s owned the bakery since 1979, but his collection dates much further back, and though the bakery has changed hands over the years, the Kivela family history carries on. “It’s all about meeting great people,” he says.

In 1984 the Nucci family—including Mario and his three sons, Joe, Sandy, and Danny—bought property on Red River Road and began planning their store. According to Joe Nucci, General Manager, the name “Bake A Deli” came out of an early brainstorming session. “We were setting up a bakery, and a deli and we wanted something catchy, so we came up with that. It has stuck ever since and has worked well for us,” he says. In 1995 they expanded their operation with a second store on Balmoral Avenue.

The tradition of a family bakery has continued with the Setalas, seen in albums full with photographs of children and grandchildren all in the kitchen. Michael, now a great grandfather, checks the enormous rotary oven with a hint of perfectionism, while telling anecdotal stories of customers and acquaintances. The bakery recently celebrated its Centennial anniversary—that’s one hundred years of providing Thunder Bay and area with Finnish breads and pastries—and little has gone undocumented.

A favourite at Nucci’s Bake A Deli is an Italian specialty dessert affectionately called “peach bums.” In Italy, these treats are known as pesche dolci con crema pasticcera—peach cookies with pastry cream—and are typically served on special occasions and holidays. Nucci’s secret lies with their long-time pastry chef, who spends hours making the domes, hollowing them out, filling them with the pastry cream, and putting them together to look like a peach. A special red liquid is applied to give the cookies a peach colour and help the sugar adhere to the surface. “We also make cannoli, cream-filled pastry desserts, using traditional Sicilian techniques. Freshness is the key to our success,” says Joe.

-Amy Vervoort

-Mark Piovesana

Chris Merkley

Amy Vervoort

Uriel Lubuk

801 Red River Road; 400 Balmoral Avenue

Chris Merkley

Nucci’s Bake A Deli

Peartree Bakery

Vienna Bakery

386 North Cumberland Street

335 North Cumberland Street



Hours: Tues–Fri, 7:30am– 6:30pm; Sat, 10am–5pm

Hours: Tues–Fri, 7am–6pm; Sat, 7am–5pm

Launching this past September, Peartree is the first dedicated gluten-free bakery in Thunder Bay. “I saw the need for it,” says owner Catharine Bower. “There was nothing in Thunder Bay and now there is.” Before opening the shop, Bower baked and sold gluten-free products from her home. “It’s very interactive here,” says Bower. “People make suggestions and share their recipes. So many people come in and are enthusiastic because we’re here and really supportive.”

“I almost became a mechanic,” admits Al Krebs, owner of Vienna Bakery. After a few odd jobs, Krebs took over the business from his Austrian-born father in 1998. Since the 50s, the bakery has been making pastries, cakes, and bread, and buns—with the purchases still being rung through on the original cash register. “We do a bit of everything here because people like variety,” he says. “These days it’s back in vogue to make the heavier breads by scratch, and everyone calls it artisan bread, but we’ve always done it that way and just called it bread,” he says with a laugh.

Since the shop opened, multigrain bread is Peartree’s bestseller. Recipes are inspired by the Internet, gluten-free cookbooks, clients, and “while playing and coming up with something really good by mistake.” Bower smiles and says that many clients stop in by choice and not because of their diet restrictions. During the holiday season, watch for gluten-free gingerbread house kits, mincemeat tarts, and other baskets of goodies. Thanks to Catharine, those with gluten allergies now have a bakery in town to call their own. -Tiffany Jarva

The specials vary daily, although you can almost always find their walnut poppy seed roll, and you can expect to see Christmas cakes and cookies lining the shelves for the holiday season. Even with the long hours, there are certainly perks to owning a bakery. “You would think that I would get tired of eating the food after all of these years, but I don’t,” he says. Can you blame him? Just-outof-the-oven treats are impossibly irresistible. -Rebekah Skochinski The Walleye



Holiday Fondue

This holiday season, think about skipping the time-consuming prep and the mess of complex entertaining. Instead, local culinary arts instructor and pastry chef Maria Costanzo suggests breaking out the fondue pot and slipping into a relaxed 70s frame of mind.

Stock Advice The best stocks are made from scratch and most require very little prep time. But, if you want to cut corners, opt for an organic or lowsodium variety of stock. - Red wine and beef stock is best for thin slices of beef tenderloin - Chicken stock is best for chicken, or seafood, such as shrimp - Vegetable stock is best for veggies, such as broccoli, cauliflower, and thinly sliced carrot

1 ½ pound Gruyere, coarsely chopped 1 ½ tablespoon cornstarch 1 cup dry white wine Salt and freshly ground white pepper Crusty French or Italian bread cubes Method

The holiday season is upon us, and with it comes the parade of social gatherings. What should be a festive time spent with friends and family can end up being stress-filled and needlessly complicated by hours of shopping, baking, and preparing of elaborate and indulgent meals. There is a solution to this madness: the fondue party!

In a bowl, toss the Gruyere with the cornstarch. In a fondue pot, or cast-iron enameled pot, bring the wine to a simmer. Add the cheese mixture all at once. Using a wooden spoon, stir over med-low heat until the cheese is melted and smooth, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with crusty bread cubes.

It is said that everything old is new again—a sentiment that not only captures the revival of many fashion trends, but also the renaissance of many food and dining styles. One such example is the fondue dinner. This retro-style dining experience, popular in the 60s and 70s, involves a communal pot of melted cheese, flavorful stock, or hot oil, in which a food, pierced onto a long fork, is dipped.

The fondue can be refrigerated overnight and reheated on the stove on low heat. A splash of Cassis or Kirsch can be added for extra flavor.

One of my favorite fondues is the classic cheese fondue, which originated in French-speaking Switzerland during the late 1800s. The combination of rich cheese and wine (and often cornstarch) makes for the perfect sauce for dipping cubes of French or Italian bread. Try using a nice French Gruyere cheese—the classic fondue cheese—or substitute with any rich cheese with great melting properties. Or check out the Thunder Oak Cheese Farm for a variety of Gouda that is to your liking. When planning your fondue party, use your imagination—there are no rules so just relax, have a glass of wine and enjoy!

The good news is, We can always make more!

Focused on Food Featuring fresh & locally produced food

Call for reservations

w w w. l o t s i x t y s i x . c o m The Walleye


By Maria Costanzo

66 Court Street S. 6 8 3 ~ 7 7 0 8


Classic Cheese Fondue

116 South Syndicate Avenue • 623-5001 •


Le Beaujolais Nouveau est arrivé! Chris Merkley

Caribou Restaurant Celebrates By Tanya Gouthro

Jazz music plays over the speakers. Lights are dimmed, and the tables are set a bit differently this evening at Caribou Restaurant. At each place is a legend of sorts, in three numbered and labelled circles: Novello del Valpolicella, Cantina Sociale, Negrar IGT; BeaujolaisVillages Nouveau, Georges DuBoeuf; and BeaujolaisVillages Nouveau, Joseph Drouhin. The wines we are sampling tonight are backed by a rich history. Every year in France, the Beaujolais Nouveau—a red wine made from Gamay grapes and produced in the Beaujolais region of France—is released on the third Thursday of November, according to tradition. The young, fruity wine is ready for consumption only 6–8 weeks after harvest, and it is not meant to be kept. It makes perfect sense, therefore, that the release of the Beaujolais Nouveau is a much-anticipated yearly event. Of course, celebration ensues.

At Caribou the celebration is on. Jeff Hupka, Senior Operations Manager, introduces us to the wines and shares his favourites. He is happy to quietly support this highly-fêted occasion by offering all French wine by the bottle at half price for this evening. The food is decadent, and débuts with shrimp remoulade and crêpe monsieur, which pairs beautifully with the Italian Novello. The main favourite for me is definitely the duck confit, crisped to perfection and partnered with a fresh pomegranate-pear chutney. The event is meant to give everyone a taste of Beaujolais Nouveau, and expose us to a long-standing tradition. It is meant to be kept “simple and fresh, just like the wine,” says Hupka. When Chef Craig Vieira—at Caribou since its inception—comes out to say hello at the end of our meal, it must be said that he is met with two very satisfied, nouveaux-amateurs of Beaujolais Nouveau.

Schnap to it! By Jeannie Dubois, Certified Sommelier

Home Building Centre

• 670 Beaverhall Place • 475-5300



We will gladly match any advertised local competitor's price on an identical in-stock item.

This offer can not be combined with any other offer.

Home Owners helping homeowners®

The year is 1989, the time 7:15 pm—forty-five minutes before another harrowing high school dance featuring some better-forgotten electronica is about to begin. My friend rummages through her father’s austere liquor cabinet for a nip before we give our hair one final spray and go on to make memories of the “best years” of our lives. Dr. McGillicuddy’s Peach Schnapps is our poison, and we dutifully down the sticky-sweet confection with a grin and a groan. Over the next four years, this ritual was to be repeated with variations on the schnapps theme, from peppermint to butterscotch, cherry to lemon drop. Mercifully, as university loomed, the age of schnapps came to a close and the era of vodka was ushered in. However, it wasn’t until on a recent trip to Europe that I was given the opportunity to revisit schnapps, and I soon realized that the above style of American schnapps actually has no bearing on the original German Schnaps they were modeled after. Both clear, colourless and dry in style, European Schnaps is distilled with an extremely high proof and only a hint of the fruit from which it is produced.

Comics & Graphic Novels • DVD’s • VHS • Rock T-Shirts Records • CD’s • Video Games • Action Figures & Toys Cards • Posters & Other Collectibles

186 South Algoma Street • 345-5700

Sadly this style has been eclipsed by its contemporary cousin and is extremely hard to come by here in the North America. So on your next European adventure, be sure to raise a glass of heart-warming Schnaps in a ‘Proust!’ Or, if you have the good fortune to have European ex-pat family or friends, perhaps raid their liquor cabinet before your next dance… The Walleye


Cupcake Café By Amy Jones

It’s no secret that cupcakes are super hot right now. Reality television is rife with shows about people who make them or want to make them, and for the past couple of years, gourmet cupcake shops have been popping up all over larger cities— now Thunder Bay can count itself among them.

Tyler Sklazeski

The Cupcake Café is nestled in a strip mall between a hairdresser and a pizza joint on Red River Road, identified by only a small banner hanging above the door. The café doesn’t look like much from the outside, but as soon as you step inside, you realize this is no ordinary place. Although the café itself is bright and cheery, with the distinct, homey feel of a familyrun establishment, the first thing that hits you is the smell—a soft, sugary, buttery smell, tinged with a slight edge of caramel that makes your mouth water and your willpower dissolve. Then, you see them, sitting in a pastry case by the counter. Cupcakes. Trays and trays of them. For me, a perfect cupcake is flavourful and moist, with a frosting that’s not too sweet or dense. By these standards, the four cupcakes I tried were all, well, perfect. Both the Caramella—a marble cake with caramel filling and caramel buttercream—and the Triple Bypass—chocolate cake with Dulce de Leche filling, topped with a chocolate buttercream frosting and sprinkled with Skor Bar bits—might have to go into my own personal Cupcake Hall of Fame. But I shouldn’t get ahead of myself. There are still a couple of dozen other cupcake flavours that I’ll have to try first. And I’m pretty sure there’s a Red Velvet cupcake in that pastry case that’s calling my name, all the way from the other side of town. The Cupcake Café is located at 843 Red River Road. Daily cupcake specials available. Call 683-7677 or visit for details.

Ferrero Rocher

Ruby Moon Restaurant By Rebekah Skochinski

Directions: Shake vigorously with ice and serve in a chilled martini glass OR replace the milk with hot coffee and top with whipped cream. Too busy to make your own? That’s okay, Ruby Moon is open seven days a week. Find them at 10 South Court Street.


The Walleye

Chris Merkley

If you’ve been naughty this year, and leaving milk and cookies isn’t enough of a guarantee that you’ve made the nice list, consider mixing up the Ferrero Rocher—it’s sure to make things jollier for both you and old St. Nick. This tasty concoction of liqueurs and rum, mixed with frothy ice-cold milk, will bring visions of dancing sugar plums faster than you can say Merry Christmas.

.5 ounce of Kahlua .5 ounce Malibu Rum .5 ounce Crème de Cacao .5 ounce Frangelico 1.5 ounces of milk

An original like you. Exciting new designs. Now at Thunder Bay Country Market Saturdays 8am - 1pm (upper level) 508 E.Victoria Ave.



Will be getting a

Flu Shot “Dayton isn’t old enough to get the flu shot this year. That’s why my husband and I will be sure to get it. We don’t want to risk spreading the virus to our baby.”

Drink of the Month



Megan & Dayton Lipinski

For more info, visit


Christmas Hours; Tues., Wed., Thurs, Fri., Sat., 11am-5pm 132 Cumming Street (off May St.)

New Year’s Eve By Michelle McChristie


Join some of Thunder Bay’s most talented crafters and artisans for a


Over 60 vendors: two storeys of local food, crafts and art.

Dorothy Dove Building at the CLE

Saturdays 8am - 1pm until Christmas

New Year’s Eve is an evening with a lot of hype and, well, let’s be honest: hype can lead to disappointment. To help with this, the staff at The Walleye headquarters have researched Thunder Bay’s New Year’s Eve offerings and have surefire suggestions for an enjoyable evening. If staying home to watch the ball drop is a priority for you, it is possible to squeeze in a divine dinner or some family fun and make it home in time to see Dick Clark. We recommend purchasing tickets or making reservations early to avoid disappointment (and having to resort to a box of frozen appetizers). The ultimate family event for New Year’s Eve is at Fort William Historical Park. Bring your skates, sleds, and toboggans, or borrow a pair of snowshoes from FWHP and frolic in the outdoors. For those in need of some warmth, there will be a variety of indoor activities, including children’s entertainment and crafts. The fireworks are a highlight of the event and are held at 10:00 pm. Delicious snacks and hot chocolate will be available. 473-2344 The Keg Steakhouse & Bar will open at 3:30 pm and will be accepting limited reservations. In addition to their regular menu (which has excellent choices for kids), they will offer a selection of three-course specials priced at $41.95 per person. These meals will have a choice of salad, rice pilaf or potato variations, main dishes such as prime rib, filet mignon, and lobster tail, and a choice of desserts (we recommend the Billy Miner Pie). The night will be fun-filled with party favours at midnight. 623-1960

Ruby Moon welcomes customers to celebrate in style with two dinner seatings. For the early birds, there is a seating at 5–6:00 pm, and for nighthawks, a late seating at 8–9:00 pm. The menu includes favourites such as prime rib, Mediterranean chicken, and blackened salmon, each served with artisan bread, soup or salad, dessert, and a bottle of house wine. Dinner for two is $79 for the early seating and $99 for the late seating, which includes two glasses of bubbly to toast the new year. Ruby Moon will also have live music, courtesy of the Scott King Band. 344-3828 Thunder Bay’s newest steak lounge, Runway 25, will feature their regular menu along with festive features for $28 per person, including pecan and maple striploin steak, and chili and brown sugarcured rib eye, paired with sides such as carmelized root vegetables. Runway 25’s house pianist will be tickling the ivories throughout the evening. 577-1121, x725

Next door at Caribou, Chef Craig Vieira has planned a tantalizing menu with a selection of three-course meals priced at $65. The menu include prosciutto shrimp and squash gnocchi appetizers, a choice of celebration salad or clam chowder, and a well-rounded list of entrées featuring classics such as rack of lamb, cedar salmon, and “angry lobster pasta.” 628-8588 The Walleye


Food CityScene

Finding the Perfect Dogsled by Darren McChristie

Last year, Boreal Journeys Sled Dog Kennel started a program that puts a new (or perhaps old) twist on cutting a Christmas tree. Paul Amano owns and operates the kennel, which is located about 20 kilometres west of Kakabeka Falls. They currently have 38 sled dogs and offer a variety of programs, including their tree cutting experience. With the help of a guide and a dog team, customers explore Amano’s trails in search of the perfect Christmas tree. Once found, the tree is cut, strapped onto the sled and hauled back to “base camp,” where a heated prospector’s tent and hot chocolate await. On weekends, there will be ornament-making and other Christmas-themed activities. Amano has received enthusiastic responses from his tree-cutting customers. “We’re hoping it will become a family tradition for people,” he says. Each dogsled can accommodate 2-3 people and the experience is suitable for all ages. The trip is a great introduction to dog sledding and the tree it yields will, no doubt, be one of your family’s most memorable.

Winter Hikes

Boreal Journeys Sled Dog Kennel is open for tree cutting, by appointment, Tuesdays–Sundays throughout December. For more information call 933-4224; www.

Story and photos by Susan Hagens You’re sitting inside, cocooned in the warmth, looking outside, thinking: I should do something active. We northerners know how to enjoy winter by skiing, skating, and snowmobiling, but what can we do when the weather turns cold and there is little-to-no snow or ice? Go for a hike. Step outside from the warmth and allow the cold air to revive you. Breathe in and accept the cold. The most important thing to remember when going on winter hikes is to wear multiple layers of clothing. Remember that cotton tends to stay wet and can make for cold feet, so opt for wool socks. When you are layering, think three layers: base layer (long underwear), mid-layer (a fleece), and outer layer (a jacket). Popular winter hiking locations in the Thunder Bay area include the Cascades Conservation Area, Centennial Park, and Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. Once the snow arrives, some areas are heavily used and therefore packed down and easy to hike, while other areas may require snowshoes. For hiking ideas, check out the Thunder Bay Hiking Association’s guidebook.


Gluten-Free • Breads • Buns & Rolls • Muffins • Cookies • Desserts & Many More

Now that you are prepared for your hike, open yourself to the possibilities of nature. Make sure to look around and enjoy what is there. The ice crystals sparkle in the light of the sun, the bare branches of the trees form geometrical shapes against the sky, and panoramic views that are normally blocked by leaves are revealed.

807-766-9660 • 386 N. Cumberland Street


The Walleye

CityScene theTOPfive

Stocking the Youth Cupboard By Rebekah Skochinski

Stocking the Youth Cupboard is an annual event that includes live music and poetry readings by local community members. The intent is to rally support for the Children’s Aid Society’s Independence Cupboard, which helps youth who are living independently or on the streets. The evening will feature entertainment by Aubrey Brandt, Morningstar DeRosier, Alice Sabourin, Robin Ranger, Betsy Martin, Greenback Trio, and Jen Metcalfe. Admission by non-perishable food items, toiletries, or a cash donation. Stocking the Youth Cupboard: December 8 at The Learning Café (510 Victoria Avenue) from 7 – 9pm. For more information visit their page on Facebook. Tara George

Storm Carroll

Robin Ranger

Get Your Knit On By Andrea Stach

It’s back—the classic craft of knitting. The art that began as a way for the Nomads to keep their feet warm during winter has seen a steady resurgence recently. Thanks to Julia Roberts, Cameron Diaz, and the internet, knitting has actually started to become cool. If you are already a knitter, you know that as the first few flakes start to fly and our furnaces start to hum, there is something deep within our creative souls that makes us yearn for our needles and our colourful skeins of yarns given to us by friendly alpaca and angora. We all know that knitting takes time, but this is probably the part of knitting that many of us love the most. It is the perfect way to bring friends together on those chilly evenings that are best spent indoors. Hunkered down at a good friend’s house, surrounded by cups of tea, the needles and the stories start flying— what’s said between knits and purls stays between knits and purls. No knitting catastrophe (these actually happen!) goes unsolved on those nights. During the time spent moving those needles back and forth in our hands, it is wonderful to think about the person you are knitting for—the adorable hat for your niece, or a pair of cozy socks for your dad’s big feet. As the days fly by towards Christmas and we get ready to come together in the spirit of giving and sharing, there is no better time than now to sit down, pull out those needles, and get your knit on. Lucky for us, Thunder Bay has two fabulous yarn stores located within a block of each other: Carryl’s Yarns, 500 E Victoria Ave and Threads In Time, 426 E Victoria Avenue. Both shops cater to new and experienced knitters. The Walleye


Mike Pianka

Music Begin a new family tradition with our Christmas Tree Excursions!

Empire Lies

- I Don’t Think This is Gonna Fly By Kathryn Lyzun

On November 26th at Black Pirates’s Pub, Empire Lies released their third album, I Don’t Think This is Gonna Fly—a high-speed, super catchy pop-punk record with some unexpectedly heavy undertones. “The album title and most of the songs are designed to express the gradual falling of rock music in Canada. It’s a little disheartening, I know. Some of the songs describe what it’s like to be part of something that’s doomed to fail—something any touring band lives with every day,” says vocalist/guitarist Evan Santa. But pessimism aside, Santa says the songs are also about “knowing this isn’t going to fly, but jumping off a cliff anyway—just going for it. Getting in your van, crossing the country and playing for peanuts.”

Welcome to Christmasland!

Santa and bandmates Daniel Robere (guitar/vocals), Dean Hill (bass/vocals), and Derek Shaffer (drums/vocals) plan to do just that next spring: get in a van and tour coast to coast. They’re also hoping to play their second show at Canadian Music Week in Toronto before hooking up with a few other Canadian bands for their fourth major tour. “We just want to keep touring this album until all of Canada hears it,” Santa says. The guys have reason to be proud of this release. Unlike their previous two albums, this one was professionally recorded and mixed locally at Dining Room Studios, then mastered at Rain City Recorders in Vancouver. With an album cover shot by local photographer Mike Pianka, Empire Lies packaged up what Santa calls “the best work any of us have been a part of.” “It started out as a vision to place ourselves at a higher caliber of band,” he says. “Once [it] came back from Vancouver, we found that we created something even better than we expected. It actually blew our minds how awesome the record turned out.” His favourite track? “Homesick Hearts.” “But that’s just mine—everyone in the band has a different [one]. I take that as a good sign that different people will dig the album.” Check them out at

Christmas Hours Start December 1st

Contemporary Gifts locally and Canadian hand crafted 182 South Algoma Street, Thunder Bay, Ontario • 345-4686 • Mon - Fri 10:00 am to 8:00 pm • Sat 10:00 am to 5:30 pm • Sun 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm


The Walleye


Thunder Bay in Concert

Local talent performs to raise funds for charities By Peter Jabs

Every year, Robert Smith & Associates of Schreiber/Terrace Bay presents an evening of some of our very best performers showcased in our very best facility, for a world-class show with the gross receipts distributed to local charities.


At Home and Abroad By Rebekah Skochinski

Dave Koski, R.G.D.

It was an exciting evening of music that began with the Canadian debut of Cuban Conductor Zenaida Romeu, and the sweetly melodic piece, Punto y Tonadas, a composition by Cuban composer Carlos Fariñas. It was followed by the Brahams’ Concerto for Violin and Violincello—a muscular piece of music that had Thomas Cosbey (violin) and Marc Palmquist (cello) testing their limits with an edgy execution. The audience appreciated the efforts of this exhilarating first-time performance, rewarding the duo with three appreciative standing ovations. My only wish: more projection. In a few places the notes didn’t soar as much as they ought to. The second half belonged to Beethoven, and you could feel the orchestra really settling in during their performance of Symphony, No. 6 (universally known as the Pastoral Symphony). We were transported to a country landscape with its rolling meadows, a serene brook, the reveling countryfolk, a tremendous thunderstorm, and a thankful respite for the storm’s passing with the peaceful Shepherd’s song to close. Romeu’s efforts were impressive; she exuded vigor and passion, and at times her conducting was so precise it was as though she had four hands. At the start of the evening she addressed the crowd, saying, “Without you, our work would have no sense.” And although she admittedly struggled for the words in English, she couldn’t have chosen better—without sense (purpose or visceral), the music would also have given no enjoyment. And on this evening, there was plenty.

The Smith Family Singers started the program on a somber note, having just arrived from the funeral of a young father and husband lost in an industrial accident. They invested the Beatles’ song “A Hard Day’s Night” with a whole new meaning and feeling, the lyrics “when I come home to you” signifying an afterlife journey. A solo Smith Singer’s heartfelt rendition of a Gospel hymn dedicated to him opened the floodgates. However, by the time the Grumpy Grandpas had finished their set with “I am a Pizza,” the heaviness had been replaced with childhood glee. A change of hats, and the Grumpy Grandpas transformed into Flipper Flanagan’s Flat Footed Four—forty-five years behind them and still robust and as entertaining. Taking advantage of the everchanging colours and crystal clear audio was Mood Indigo. Thunder Bay legend Glenn Jennings tickled the ivories and Mark Potvin, in “penguin shoes,” be-bopped his horn to delight the audience with jazz standards such as “Take the ‘A’ Train.” The stream of years has polished these nuggets to a fine shine. A thunderous round of applause greeted the surprise appearance of Olivia Korkola, all the way from Boston, during the Kam Valley Fiddlers’ turn. This junior group reminds me that Celtic music is one of our deepest cultural roots that continue to feed our youth. She kept pace with her former teacher, Pierre Schryer. The fiddle master Schryer created foot-stomping excitement during the evening’s finale, accompanied by 15-year old Quinn Bachand. The Victoria, B.C. youth, playing a guitar—made for him by his father—high on his chest, vied in a musical log-rolling contest with Schryer. They both won. Their collaboration on an Irish jig started out Sunday-morning-coming-down slow and ended up Saturdaynight-fight fast. Just as quickly, the house lights came on to quell the standing ovation, sending us homeward with a taste of heaven in our collective soul.

CHANGES consignment boutique

New and gently used clothing, footwear, jewelery, purses and accessories, Youth, ladies and men’s wear.

Make a “change” today

113 S. May St., (807) 285-0791 The Walleye


Food Music

No Plain Jane

Amy Vervoort

A Conversation with Chantal Kreviazuk By Kyle Poluyko

With a powerful emergence onto the music scene in 1996 with her first studio album, Under These Rocks and Stones, through to 2009’s Plain Jane, Chantal Kreviazuk has not only been able to carve out her own niche as a successful singer-songwriter, she is also a wife, mother of three, actress, and activist. She makes it very clear, though, that her own motivation is what drives her, especially when it comes to her music. “If I don’t challenge myself, there’s no point in my making music,” she says, in reference to her November 18th concert at the Community Auditorium, when she married her music to that of the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra. When asked about putting her music through the demands of the scoring process, she exhales with a contented and confident sigh. “The scores are done and of course I was a bit of a tyrant during the process, but I’m so happy

with the result,” she says. “I feel like I can sit back with a glass of wine and just enjoy it with the audience. It’s almost like symphony karaoke for me. It’s almost like I get to just sing along.” Speaking more about the symphonic collaboration, she again radiates an intoxicating confidence. “We’re multidimensional artists. I wanted it to be sophisticated and challenging. I wanted to create the kind of show I wanted to see, like the symphonic concerts of Björk for instance—some of my favourites. But a part of it, too, is keeping yourself alive and inspired.” “Alive” and “inspired” are definitely two words that aptly describe Kreviazuk. Painful experiences—such as a serious accident in 1994 and the loss of an early love to suicide—have influenced many of her releases and, to this day, she will not

shy away from tackling the sharper edge of human experiences. “The cool thing in life is that you can survive and express them,” she says. “I’m trying to be me. I’m trying to live through this in head, heart and soul, and arrive authentically. I’m just doing my thing on impulse as any artist would.” Nothing is more striking about Chantal Kreviazuk’s fervour for music than when she speaks of its power in healing and in education. “Music is essential for our developing minds. It’s a sort of divinity—a comforting gel that the gods provide. Our bodies crave it from day one as part of our developing and nurturing.” And when it comes to music in education, the passion in Kreviazuk’s voice grows. “Words flow through music. I taught my own kids to speak using musical inflections. I would

tell kids that anywhere they can find music—making choral groups, singalongs, finding someone to give them fifteen minutes of their time to teach a chord or four chords—do it! Music is the soundtrack to our lives.” And it was with eloquence, elegance, and a sense of humour that she took to the stage with the TBSO—along with that glass of wine. “I’m in Thunder Bay,” she joked. “I know how it’s done here.” She honoured her audience by saying that Thunder Bay “feels like home,” before delivering a hauntingly beautiful rendition of the song by the same name. As she closed out the nearly two-hour show with her hit cover of “Leaving on a Jet Plane,” Kreviazuk exuded an air of accomplishment while the audience surely wished they had a ticket to continue along on her journey.

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Top Canadian male country artist Paul Brandt is coming to Thunder Bay. In 1996, Brandt’s single “My Heart has a History” hit the Billboard Top Ten in the U.S.—the first Canadian male country musician to do so since Hank Snow in the 70s.




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Over the years, Brandt has built a name for himself as both a musician and as a humanitarian. Earlier this year, Brandt launched Build It Forward, a CMT television documentary series that follows different families on the brink of homelessness. The families receive new homes, but in return have to help volunteer for others also in need.

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• Shop locally and support your friends and neighbours • Most wrapping paper is not recyclable, so be creative with kraft paper, newsprint, cloth or reusable bags • Check our website for a selection of affordable and eco-friendly gift baskets • Use the City of Thunder Bay chipping sites to recycle your tree 5/4/09 3:37:57 PM 562 Red River Road 807-624-2140

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Music Food

Burning to the Sky


By Gord Ellis

In Praise of Gordon Lightfoot I’ve never known a world without Gordon Lightfoot. It’s his songs that still remind me most of being a young man. When I hear “Carefree Highway,“ I’m 12 years old again, wearing a fringed leather jacket and biking up to the Cascades in search of brook trout. The first doom-filled guitar notes that signal the beginning to the epic “Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” take me back to my childhood bedroom, channeling WLS from Chicago on an ancient radio. And that finger-picked opening of “Beautiful” is a time capsule to a place and time when young love was blooming. “Beautiful” is, in fact, just that. The melody is impossibly delicate and intricate—like the lines of a lover’s face. It’s Lightfoot’s melodies that set him above so many of his contemporaries. They stick like honey. He is really a songwriter first, and his ability to craft a tune is nearly unmatched. Bob Dylan, perhaps Lightfoot’s closest competition in this two-man race, once said when he heard a Gordon Lightfoot song he wished “it would last forever.” Dylan has covered Lightfoot several times, most successfully in 1998 when he nailed “I’m Not Supposed to Care” at a New York City concert.

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There is little waste and few flourishes in a Gordon Lightfoot tune. Instrumental leads are always hooks. Whether it be the little circular guitar riff in “Race Among the Ruins” or the rolling drums on “Black Day in July,” Lightfoot’s bands have never noodled or jammed. They serve the singer and the song. Gordon Lightfoot’s musical influence is sometimes difficult to see in the light of popular music circa 2011. However, in the Canadian roots rock world, it remains profound. There could be no Blue Rodeo, Cowboy Junkies, or even Sam Roberts without Gordon Lightfoot. Canadian guitar slinger Luke Doucet paid tribute to Lightfoot last year when he re-imagined “Sundown” as a Crazy Horse-style rocker. His vocals—shared with wife Melissa McClelland— put a pop twist on this classic ode to lust and infidelity. It was a golden moment and one of my favourite recordings of the year. I’ve only seen Lightfoot once, in 2006. It was during a comeback tour of sorts. A couple years earlier he had nearly died of an abdominal aneurysm and was in a coma for six weeks. Not many people thought he’d make it through, but he did. Once he felt healthy enough, he was back on the road with his bandmates of 30 years. The show I saw at the Community Auditorium was good, not great. The show volume was too low, apparently at the request of the man himself. Lightfoot himself still looked frail and his oncehusky baritone was a bit thinner than I remembered. But he was there, in the flesh, singing his songs—conjured by a band that knew exactly what needed to be played, led by a singer who still needed to tell his stories. One gorgeous creation after another.

Larry Hogard

Serving Thunder Bay & Northwestern Ontario since 2008

Ahnisnabae Art Gallery

Lightfoot is about to return to the Lakehead on December 4th for what is said to be his final tour. We’ll see. Old time minstrels have a hard time hanging it up. But it’s nice to know the world still has Gordon Lightfoot. And it will always have his songs.


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Ohbijou in the City Metal Meets

By Kathryn Lyzun

Toronto’s Ohbijou played the Apollo on November 11, showcasing the floating, orchestral sounds of their newly released third album, Metal Meets. Lead singer Casey Mecija says it’s the most mature and cohesive album the band has put out. “We brought expanded horizons and relationship experience into it. We did a lot of travelling and touring [with second album, Beacons] and experienced growth and change in our personal lives that allowed us to see the world with more depth and perspective. It just naturally carried over to the music.”

Peter Wragg

Living out what Mecija calls “the proverbial band story,” she and bandmates James Bunton, Ryan Carley, Anissa Hart, Heather Kirby and sister Jenny Mecija hopped in a van and holed up in a cottage to compose the album. Shortly after, they headed to Montreal to polish it up with well-known producer Jace Lasek, whom Ohbijou credit with helping them take it to the next level. As a result, Metal Meets is a rich, emotive, at times somewhat trippy indie pop album. Ohbijou layers Mecija’s high, sweet voice over experimental blends of violin, electric guitar, drums, piano and synthesizers. “Niagara” and “Anser” are standout tracks, but the whole album is the kind of lying-on-abed-with-headphones-on, dreamy pop that your thoughts can drift away on.

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Metal and elements are themes that weave throughout the album, highlighted by songs like “Iron and Ore” and “Obsidian.” Mecija says the album wasn’t planned that way, but metal came up again and again as imagery to convey feelings “in their simplest form— like base metals.” Ohbijou’s multi-instrumental sound translates well to the stage, and they love to tour. Thunder Bay was an early stop on a four-week tour heading to the west coast. “We’re feeling really good,” Mecija says. “We worked really hard on this album and we want to play it for as many people as we can.” “And we love the ladies at the Apollo,” she adds. “The audience is always amazing—we love Thunder Bay!” Check them out at

Hand hewn silver jewellery, holloware and Fine Art

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Friday, December 2, 12pm to 6pm Saturday, December 3, 10am to 3pm

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Books Music Video Vinyl

Bad As Me

By Tom Waits

December always brings special holiday traditions. In my family, that means bringing out our favourite Christmas stories. One of the most special to me is The Olden Days Coat by Margaret Laurence. For the first time, Sal spends Christmas at her grandmother’s house and she isn’t terribly happy about it. Rather than helping decorate the tree, she goes out to the shed to look through an old trunk. In the trunk she finds an olden days coat in her size. She puts it on and everything changes. I won’t spoil the story for you—I’d rather you enjoy her adventure yourself.

What can only be described by Tom Waits’ fans as a long-awaited catharsis, Bad As Me is Waits’ first release of new material in seven years. The bar stool prophet takes the listener to places they might not always want to go, but surely have been—and thus inevitably securing Waits’ position as one of the most prolific and revered artists of his time. The album, written and produced by Waits and his wife Kathleen Brennan, features a host of very talented musicians, with notable guest appearances by Keith Richards, Flea, and Wait’s son Casey on drums. Bad As Me has it all, from ballads to brawling and everything in between. An essential for the definitive collector of all that is Waits.

-Ruth Hamlin-Douglas

-Tracy Sadgrove

The Olden Days Coat

By Margaret Laurence

The Sheepdogs

Learn & Burn LP Metals


Feist is the darling of Canada’s pop music scene as evidenced by CBC’s decision to feature a live broadcast of Metals as the highlight of their 75th anniversary celebration. Metals is the fourth studio album from Feist. The album’s emotionally-charged harmonies are a departure from her last recording in 2007, which included “1234”—the catchy tune made famous by an iPod Nano commercial. The songs on Metal are deeply reflective and mature, even moody at times. In her own words, “there is a lot more chaos and movement and noise than I’ve had before.” True fans will appreciate the depth of the new material, while others will need to listen with an open mind. - Margaret Ryan


The Walleye

The Sheepdogs are southern rockers from Saskatchewan, if there is such a thing. Their sound is reminiscent of the 70s and the Sheepdogs are too—really, it’s uncanny how well they have mastered all things 70s. Their brand of old-school rock revival is suitably packaged in their LP Learn & Burn. Featuring the hit “I Don’t Know,” the LP, pressed on heavy weight vinyl, is full of the stuff that has rocketed The Sheepdogs to fame. Their sound is best on vinyl and nothing beats the nostalgic feeling of handling an album, placing it on the turntable and gently dropping the needle. The album is also available on those newfangled CDs. - Michelle McChristie

CityScene Music

Sam Roberts Band

Getting people out of their seats, dancing and wanting more By Travis Setala

Some rock bands might find it hard to get an entire auditorium to get out of their rows of seat and dance, but Sam Roberts seemed to do it with great ease. Much of the credit for that has to go to their incredible, charismatic front man—within the first song he had urged everyone out of their seats to start moving along to the music. Playing all of their hits as well as songs from their new album, they ended the night with a topical encore, “American Bootlegger in Thunder Bay,” as well as “Irene,” Sam Roberts Band knew what the audience wanted, and gave it to them with enthusiasm. They always put on a great show and will definitely be welcomed back with open arms.

Arkells Rock The Outpost By Tracy Sadgrove

Dave Koski, R.G.D.

An enthusiastic 400+ crowd welcomed Hamilton’s alternative rockers the Arkells to The Outpost in November. The Juno Awardwinning band, currently on tour promoting their latest album Michigan Left, played an impressive 90-minute set, including songs like “The Ballad of Hugo Chavez” and “Pullin’ Punches.” The latter had fans dancing, singing and even moshing throughout


the evening. A roar of approval accompanied Mike DeAngelis’ guitar as he segued into “O The Boss is Coming,” marking the end of the show—or so we thought. Almost immediately returning to the stage, accompanied with openers San Sebastian, the Arkells wowed with a cover of the Hall and Oates classic “You Make My Dreams Come True,” and then ended the set with “John Lennon.” Later in the evening, I chatted with DeAngelis briefly during a chance meeting at the local watering hole The Sovereign Room. He shared that playing Thunder Bay is great, and how he likes that the audience is full of happy faces with “lots of positive energy.”


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To register or for more information call 684-3311 Hours Mon. to Thurs. 5:45am – 10pm • Fri. 5:45am – 9pm • Weekends 8am – 9pm The Walleye


theArts Food A Picasso in the North Country

Compiling more than four decades worth of interviews, observations, personal notes and letters (complete with Norval’s spelling and grammatical errors), and photographs of rarely seen pieces from private collections, author Jim Stevens shares his behind-the-artist stories and anecdotes about one of the north’s most revered, respected, and often emulated artists in his latest book A Picasso in the North Country. Writer Tiffany Jarva catches up with Stevens and asks why he believes now is a good time to share some of these lesser-known stories about Norval. By Tiffany Jarva

“My connection with Norval began in 1966 in Red Lake,” says local author Jim Stevens over a coffee in a local café, “and it continued until 1985 when Norval moved out west. I acquired his paintings and we kind of became friends.” In 1973, Stevens signed a contract stating that Norval was “bound to exclusively work with me for six months.” But there were at least five other books that Norval was involved with at that time, including a couple of elaborate coffee table style books, so Stevens decided to wait. “They all have merit,” he says, but “there was a part of the real Norval that wasn’t coming through, ignoring a lot of his eccentricities.” With subtitles like “Artist Roy Thomas meets Norval in the Geraldton Jail, 1969” and “Norval Painting a Fish on the Spot,” the book captures the different sides of Norval, including his alcohol dependency and his two-spirited nature. “Not everyone knows that

Jim Stevens

The Wild Journey of Canadian Artist Norval Morrisseau

Norval had strong affections for both men and women,” says Stevens. “I saw him paint a number of times,” Stevens also notes. “He could work anywhere. He painted on everything. Whatever he had.” Stevens began photographing Norval’s pieces in the early years, and also took pictures of the artist while he painted. He sees many of Norval’s works as an “ecological interpretation of the north by a First Nations person.” Many of Norval’s pieces are multi-layered, based on aboriginal myths and legends. “He also put a lot of stock in dreams,” says Stevens. Stevens muses about how he witnessed Norval being inspired by every day things like “cracks in the sidewalks” and “grain in doors.” “His mission was to paint and everything else was a lark.”

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Fame was not easy for Norval. “The sad thing is he abandoned his family, six children,” says Stevens. “After ‘71 he had nothing really to do with them.” Regardless of his poor family track record, Stevens is quick to mention that Norval was the godfather to his daughter. In the end, he asserts that Norval was unlike no other. He was a true artist. “He broke ground for every serious artist, native or non-native, in northern Ontario today.” Part of Stevens’ motivation for writing about the north was because he was a high school teacher in Kenora in the 70s. “This was just when native students were coming out of the residential schools into the public school system and there was not a book in the library that had anything to do with them in any way.” Over the years Stevens has partnered with elders and artists with oral knowledge about myths and legends. He has worked in collaboration on books like Killing the Shamen, Sacred Legends of the Sandy Lake Cree and Great Leader of the Ojibway: Mis-quona-queb. A Picasso in the North Country is available at Ahnisnabae Art Gallery.

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Linda Brown Hooked on Hammering By Rebekah Skochinski

On one of those rare, pleasantly warm and sunny days in November, I visited silversmith Linda Brown in her gallery on Bay Street. I was immediately fascinated by the stunning assortment of jewellery, and by the workshop in the back where she hammers metal on large stumps of wood. It’s not often that you get to see an artist at work. A Fine Arts major, Brown admits she has always been a “maker.” Although primarily a jewellery-maker, in 2001 Linda attended a workshop in British Columbia and created her first vessel. “I was hooked on hammering,” she says. “The techniques spoke to me. I bought the recommended silversmithing manual and I started sinking and raising bowls with the manual open beside me.”

Brown confesses that she is attracted to metal and fire because it’s scary. Her face lights up as she talks about torching the silver until it’s pink-hot and then quenching it in water. The flip side is the process of hammering. “Because you have to be so precise, it takes great concentration, so when I’m hammering I find it to be very meditative.” She adds, “You know, I remember hammering on one of those toy peg tables as a kid. It was so noisy that my mom suggested I play downstairs. There I was, with bare feet, sitting on the floor of the basement, hammering for hours.”


All photos: Chris Merkley

Since then, Brown has taken workshops with Master Silversmith Brian Clarke, staged a two-person exhibition at Thunder Bay Art Gallery with her sister (a goldsmith), and is currently producing a series of bowls— something she hasn’t done on a large scale since 2007. “It’s been asking me to be done,” says Brown. “The bowls are fairly sculptural, so they allow me to explore the metal and understand it and express my philosophical thoughts.” She picks up a bowl to show me the folds of metal. “I hammer in between the folds on the inside and that brings the bowl up [a technique known as sinking ]. The bowl grows from the tension that’s created between the spaces that are hammered on the sides. It’s very similar to life: everything that we are juxtaposed with affects the growth in our life space.”

If you’re ever grabbing a cup of coffee next door at Calico and you hear the faint sound of hammering, it’s Linda, hard at work, deep in meditative thought, creating something one-of-a-kind. Northern Lights Gallery is located at 316 Bay Street. Stop by their open house December 2 (12–6pm) and 3 (10am–3pm) to view a selection of hand hewn fine silver jewellery, holloware and Fine Art.

The Walleye


theArts Food

Q+A with Michael Christie By Amy Jones

2011 has been a pretty good year for Michael Christie. His debut short fiction collection, The Beggar’s Garden, was published by Harper Collins Canada to rave reviews, and went on to win the Vancouver Book Award, was a finalist for the Rogers Trust Fiction Prize, and was longlisted for the Giller Prize. After years of living on the West Coast, Christie moved back to Thunder Bay with his family. Amy Jones finds out why.

Q: You also worked in a homeless shelter in Vancouver for a period of time. How did you get involved in that? A: Totally by accident. I had an undergraduate degree in psychology and an entry level job at a homeless shelter was pretty much the only work I could get in the field. But then I fell in love with the work. It certainly changed me and the way I look at the world and the way I think of people. I worked in a bunch of different organizations, homeless shelters and a psychiatric hospital, did outreach and worked in the court system with people who are mentally ill. Q: I t seems as though many of your stories came from that experience.

Tyler Sklazeski

A: I think so. I mean, it’s not like “real stories from the streets” kind of thing— it’s as inspired by that as any writer’s work is inspired by their life. But it’s not an “issues” book, even though sometimes people will interpret it in that sort of framework—like it’s a book about poverty or social issues, which it’s really not. It’s a book about people, just like every book. Q: What made you come back to Thunder Bay? A: A few things—my dad still lives here, so that was an important part of it. I’ve got a young son, and we wanted him to spend some time with his grandpa. Also, I’m teaching at LU in January— Creative Writing—and I was able to buy a house for very cheap. I’m also writing a book that’s set here, and I can write full time. In Vancouver, I would have had to have been working. I was an editor of a magazine and I got to quit that job and now I’m just able to focus on writing full time.

Q: That was a skateboard magazine? A: Yeah, Color Magazine. I was an editor there for two or three years, which was fun but really time consuming and difficult to separate my own writing from all the writing that I was doing for the magazine. But it was a great magazine and really fun.

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Q: H  ow have all the success and awards changed things for you? A: I don’t know. I mean, it got me invited to the bigger writers’ festivals, which was cool. I got to hang out with writers who I’ve admired for a long time—just, you know, there’s Gary Shteyngart at a party! But at the same time I’m not really that type of person, I’m not a schmoozy kind of guy. The Writers’ Trust thing was just totally surprising. To think of the people who weren’t on the list—it was just crazy. It feels good, and it’s certainly helped get my book more exposure.

Q: And your next project is a novel set in Thunder Bay—or a place like Thunder Bay? A: Yes. I still haven’t determined if it’s here or a place like here. It’s a coming of age novel about a woman who has agoraphobia, which sounds dreary but which is actually pretty funny. She’s someone who doesn’t leave the house and sort of creates her own world in her house with her children. And it involves the history of grain elevators, which I find really fascinating. Q: Are there any things in particular you missed about Thunder Bay while you were away? A: I did come back quite frequently while I was out in Vancouver so I never really missed anything too desperately, but my favourite things in the city right now are Hillcrest Park, the Sovereign Room, the easy availability of Auran Sinappi Mustard, the North of Superior Film Association, and the Marina Skate Plaza. Michael Christie’s book, The Beggar’s Garden, is available at bookstores and online. Find out more at


Making Local Music Videos Recent filming locations include The Madhouse and Skate Park

Thunder Bay’s homegrown musical talents (some still here and some not) are not only recording their own albums, they are also choosing to shoot high quality music videos in the city. This past fall, music video shoots took place all over town.

The Knackers “Madhouse”

A Bella Clava “Food for Cannibals” Directed by Damien Gilbert

Directed by Damien Gilbert

Originally from Thunder Bay, Bella Clava is now based out of Toronto. The group recently approached local filmmaker Damien Gilbert about shooting a music video incorporating balaclavas and skateboarding. And that’s literally what Gilbert did. If you want to check out some kickass skaters showing off their moves at our local skate park, it’s worth checking out: com/watch?v=dxhRoKdIjcI

“I was approached by Ken Thacker, the lead singer of the group [The Knackers] just after the Bay Street Film Festival. He had seen my work and mentioned he wanted a music video for a song off his new album.” Gilbert thought that The Madhouse would be a perfect fit for the song, which is simply about a guy having a hard time who goes for a pint. “We had a day to shoot in the bar,” says Gilbert, adding that there are “some fun shots of people having a good time.”

Shy-Anne Hovorka “Too Young Too Late” Directed by Jason Spun

Shy-Anne recently wrapped up filming a video based on the song “Too Young Too Late.” Cowritten with Rob Benvegnu, the song was written to increase awareness about the dangers of texting and driving. The film crew staged an accident at High and 6th, working with the Thunder Bay Police, EMS Response, and Thunder Bay Fire and Rescue. The plan is to use the video as an educational tool to help deter youth from texting and driving. Watch for a release date soon.

Dave Zahodnik

Bronze “No Diamonds” Directed by DMan

“No Diamonds” is a hiphop music video shot in Thunder Bay. Filming took place all around the city, showcasing some of the grittier parts of Thunder Bay.


DefSup Regional Juried Art Exhibition By Katie Zugic

Coming in with the winter winds, Definitely Superior Art Gallery will be hosting their 23rd Annual Regional Juried Art Exhibition. This exhibition is the only paid juried art exhibit in Northwestern Ontario, featuring a diverse range of local and regional artists. You can expect to discover pieces ranging from eclectic eccentricities to contemporary classics, all huddled within the gallery walls. The exhibit will feature between 25 and 30 different artists all bonded by this year’s theme: Dis.Location. Interpretation depends on each artist’s past relationships, experiences and innovations, resulting in a prismatic array of diverse pieces. Every year the theme morphs and evolves, the art growing, the concepts developing into an unforeseeable mixture. Though each piece will be centered around a similar theme, the beauty in this exhibit is the range of diversity that ensues, depending on each individual’s prior experiences. December 2nd is Dis.Location’s gala opening reception, featuring live performances by PANG & PARR, as well as two additional shows sure to inspire and envelop your imagination.

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the LIVINGGREEN WALL The main issue is that the purchase of one of these machines locks you into the ongoing purchase of the little coffee pods, which are pre-packaged, pre-ground, pre-flavoured coffee packed into non-recyclable containers Now in addition to creating garbage when we pick up a coffee from the local donut shop in a paper cup, we’re going to create garbage even when we brew it at home! Also, while it’s become fairly easy to find fair trade coffee either in beans or ground form, it’s not easy to find fair trade coffee pods. And how much fair trade is involved in shipping the coffee around the world to be packaged in individual servings? One website estimates that three billion pods were sold last year, enough plastic to circle the earth 1.25 times. You can bet that after this gift-giving season, there will be a whole lot more. But we recognize that the waste argument alone may not be enough to convince a person to pass on these machines. Here are a few other arguments.

I was thinking of getting a single serving coffee brewer as a gift for my parents this year, but then I heard they’re not very environmentally friendly. Can you explain? Thank you for reconsidering that purchase. The single serving brewing systems are a huge gift item this Christmas, but like many items designed for convenience, they are not designed for sustainability.

Open 7 Days a Week in December!

Closed for the holidays December 25th - January 2nd Find us on Facebook for more information

The1 Walleye 324for3Donerite.indd

If you like a big mug of coffee, or want to fill a travel mug, you may not like the end result from your brewing machine. While many have a changeable setting for the amount of water that goes through, the amount of coffee in the pod does not change, so you may find small cups very strong and large cups quite watery. Any coffee connoisseur knows that the only way to make really great coffee is with freshly ground beans. How fresh are the beans in those little pods? You’re really getting little better than instant coffee. What’s wrong with brewing coffee the way we always have, and tossing the grounds into the compost bin? There are lots of great blogs and editorials on the single serve systems if you take the time to look. -Ellen Mortfield Editor’s note: reuseable pods are available for some single serving coffee brewers.

Choose the Craft Collective

for one of a kind and handmade gifts. We offer: -unique clothing - accessories - jewelllery - fine arts - crafts

197 Algoma St S. (upstairs) Tel: 285-4794

10/30/11 1:30:22 AM


Celebrating Christmas Christmas has become a major retail event, and many of us get so wrapped up in its hustle and bustle that we forget to step back and celebrate its true spirit. The costs associated with our consumerism are hidden, and as a result we become part of a system that exploits people and environments around the world. A good way to counteract this is to discuss the meaning of Christmas with your loved ones, and how best you can celebrate it by creating new traditions not based on consumerism. Here are a five ideas to reduce your impact (and your stress), save time and money, and help support the local economy. BUY LESS - Make a donation to support those less fortunate instead of exchanging presents. - Give the gift of service: tickets to a play, a gift certificate for a local restaurant or business, or coupons for something you could offer such as babysitting or housecleaning. - Exchange handmade crafts, sweets, and treats. - Purchase gifts from locally owned businesses. - Avoid toys or products made in foreign countries that have lower environmental and human-rights standards.

CHOOSE A LIVE TREE - Live trees still have a smaller impact than fake ones. Reduce the impact even further by purchasing your tree from a local tree farm. - Use natural decorations instead of imported fake ones.

REDUCE GARBAGE + ENERGY USE - Wrapping paper is not recyclable, so instead of purchasing it, make your own: chip bags, turned inside out and washed in soapy water, make beautiful silver gift wrap. - Designate a box to save trimmings, gift bags/wrap, old calendars, newspapers etc. throughout the year to wrap gifts come Christmas. - If you receive new electronics, make sure the old ones are properly recycled using Pack Pros. - Use the city’s Christmas tree chipping program. - If you use outdoor lights, use LEDs and put them on a timer for minimal use.

CONNECT WITH NATURE - Start a new holiday tradition with an outdoor winter activity.

Darren McChristie

By Sarah Kerton

The Airport Solar Park Visible from Highway 61, on the grounds of the Thunder Bay International Airport, lies a flat of land covered in a sea of solar panels. This is the Airport Solar Park and it’s ready to start generating 8.5 megawatts of electricity into the grid—enough electricity to power 1000 homes. By Larry Hogard

The Airport Solar Park is a project developed by SkyPower Limited of Toronto and it is located on the southwest side of the airport property. Landlocked by the airport, a railway line and the Kaministiquia River, the property is allocated for commercial use and managed by the airport’s administration. The land couldn’t be easily developed because it is full of silt, peat and organic debris; however, through marketing, development and promotion, the airport negotiated a land lease deal with SkyPower. The President and CEO of the Thunder Bay International Airport, Scott McFadden, says the airport’s business about more than aviation. “We needed to focus on economic development in order for the airport to grow as a business, but we had limited opportunities,” he says. The park structure is built on helical piles that are driven deep into the ground to create a base. This building technique minimizes the environmental footprint during and after construction. McFadden emphasizes that from an environmental perspective, the airport operation is rather passive. Of course, there are fuel-filled planes

landing and taking off, but McFadden states the airport’s business is really only ground-based. “Our concern for energy is focused on the ground, with our vehicles and the airport terminal building and the limit of time in which energy is wasted,” he says. Once the park is up and running, only general upkeep will be required to maintain the site, such as the occasional panel or inverter replacement and snow removal in winter. The electricity from the solar park will not be used by the airport, but the amount of electricity produced by this solar array is much greater than what the airport uses on an aggregate basis. It will also be the first airport in Canada with solar power. The next time you’re cruising south on 61 and you pass the airport, look to your right as you’re crossing the bridge and you’ll see the Airport Solar Park. SkyPower is currently developing a 10.8 MW solar project with the Fort William First Nation.

Holiday Hours (starting Dec. 1st) Monday - Friday 10-8

Saturday 10-6

Sunday 12-4

179 S. Algoma St. (Bay & Algoma Shopping District) 622-2330 The Walleye



Eleanor Drury Children’s Theatre

Hip Hop Aesop Bo Peep Be Bop, 1998

Celebrates 30th Anniversary by Kyle Poluyko

EDCT is a parent and volunteer-run organization. Along with the producer, director and assistant director, every job is done by the cast, their parents, or other valuable volunteers. Director Spencer Hari is helming this year’s production, How Much/Little We Know. The story centres around alien tourists whose ship has crash-landed on Earth and are trying to get back home, with the help of a group of local school children. The play runs at Hope Church, December 9 at 7 pm and December 10 at 1 pm. Tickets are available at the door.

Sleeping Beauty, date unknown

Kyle Poluyko

Kyle Poluyko

This season, which runs September to December, celebrates EDCT’s 30th anniversary. It has evolved from adults performing theatre for children to children and youth taking on all aspects of theatre and performing for their peers and the public. Veteran cast member Cindy Alexander recalled from her home in Toronto that, “To this day EDCT remains one of my most favourite and treasured memories. It was a safe place to explore and push your boundaries. I was involved for four seasons and in that time I learned how theatre and drama are a great mirror for life. The skills I learned to use on stage were tools I took back with me into life.” Alexander’s fellow veteran cast member, Karen MartensBall, added, “I remember EDCT most for instilling me with confidence. Through practising improv I developed skills that taught me to think fast on my feet and allowed me to stretch my creativity in ways I had not had the chance before.”

EDCT Archive

Thirty years ago, an elementary school teacher at Balsam Street School named Eleanor Drury took notice of the little opportunity for children and youth to be involved in live theatre. Drury was a strong believer in the need for a setting in which children could discover and develop their skills in the world of theatre. Drury herself was active in Cambrian Players and is described as an astounding actress. It was shortly after her death in 1980 that a number of Cambrian Players members started an extension of their company for children to participate in live theatrical productions. Their first production, Grandma’s Stockings, written and directed by Laurent J. Goulet, was presented in 1982. And so, Eleanor Drury Children’s Theatre (EDCT) was born.

2011 Cast in rehearsals

How to wrap a

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A Keg Gift Card is an ideal gift for family, friends or business associates. Available at any Keg or online at

EDCT Archive

735 Hewitson Street (807) 623-1960

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theTOPfive FILMTheatre

A Chase Down The 39 Steps Magnus Theatre Brings the Broadway Hit to Its Stage by Kyle Poluyko

A Christmas Carol Going Rogue at the Fort William Historical Park by Michelle McChristie

Rogue Productions’ theatrical presentation of A Christmas Carol returns to the Great Hall for its ninth season. The play is based on the classic tale by Charles Dickens, in which Ebenezer Scrooge discovers the true meaning of Christmas from the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. If you’ve never been, you won’t be disappointed. Many people return year after year because Rogue’s co-founder and directorJason Boesche makes every year unique by approaching each character with a fresh perspective. The play is performed in “the round,” giving the audience the feeling that they are seated right in the scene with the characters. It is an intimate experience that appeals to all ages. Performances will be held at 8 pm from December 9–11 and 15–18. Tickets are available at Fort William Historical Park and Global Experience and are $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and students.

Magnus Theatre closes out the first half of its 40th season with The 39 Steps. The story—known to most as Alfred Hitchcock’s suspenseful 1935 film—has been adapted by Patrick Barlow from both the film and the original 1915 novel by John Buchan, and is fashioned as a comedic farce with a cast of only four that has had both West End and Broadway audiences in stitches. Performed at breakneck speed and played for laughs throughout, one actor plays the debonair hero, Richard Hannay, on the run across Europe as he fights to clear himself of a murder charge while a mysterious spy organization alternately pursues and is pursued by him. The three women with whom Hannay has romantic entanglements are all played by the same actress. Requiring numerous lightning fast quick-changes, two other actors play the remaining characters, and sometimes multiple characters at once: villains, heroes, children, women, men, and even the occasional inanimate object. The film’s sober spy story is played mainly for laughs, with a script full of allusions to other Hitchcock films such as Vertigo, Rear Window, Psycho, and North by Northwest. Bound to keep audiences guessing and laughing throughout, Magnus Theatre’s production of The 39 Steps runs December 1–17.

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11/17/11 The Walleye


4:39:36 PM

DecemberEventsGuide theArts Food December 1, 7:30am

December 2, 9:30pm

Annual World AIDS Day Breakfast

Canadian Pacific Holiday Train

Victoria Inn Annual World AIDS Day Breakfast celebration and recognition of those working in the fight against HIV/ AIDS locally and globally.   345-1516

Canadian Pacific Train Station The goal of the Holiday Train is to collect food and money for local food banks and to raise awareness in the fight against hunger. Enjoy a lineup of musical talent and support the local food bank by bringing a nonperishable food item. 

December 1, 7pm

Candlelight Memorial Service

Trinity United Church Hospice Northwest is hosting a service of music, readings, and the opportunity to light a candle in memory of a loved one. The service is non-denominational and open to all members of the community. Wings of Remembrance Ornaments (spunglass keepsakes) will be available for purchase at the service for $25 each.  December 1–17

The 39 Steps

Magnus Theatre This fast-paced whodunit is based on the 1935 Hitchcock adventure film and will be performed onstage with a cast of four.  December 2–January 12 (December 2, 7–10pm Gala Opening Reception)

Three New Exhibitions

Definitely Superior Art Gallery Gallery 1: Dislocation: 23rd Anniversary Annual Regional Juried Exhibition. Diverse visual art by 25–30 contemporary regional artists in the only professional paid juried exhibition in Northwestern Ontario.

Gallery 2: Joseph Fredrich—New Installation Works: A highly recognized regional artist from Atikokan, Fredrich explores materials to generate new exciting large-scale contemporary painting/sculptural installations, further developing his own unique, powerful and inventive style. Gallery 3: Mutate Britain— International Video: A documentation of a monster street art show—an “interactive multimedia pile-up” highlighting one of the most important and influential countercultural/non-corporate art movements of our time. NB: Christmas closure: Dec. 24– Jan.2  December 2, 10am–5pm

Open House Show and Sale

The Buset Centre for Music and Visual Arts, 2nd floor Lakehead University Department of Visual Arts presents an open house featuring original works by local artists, faculty, students, and staff. Free admission. Kasia Piech (343-8063) or Sam Shahsahabi (343-8491). 



The Walleye

December 2 (12–6pm) & 3 (10–3pm)

Festive Open House

Northern Lights Gallery and Studio Stop by during the open house to view hand-hewn fine silver jewellery, holloware and Fine Art.  December 2 (4–9pm) & 3 (10am– 4pm)

December 3 (9–5pm) & 4 (11– 5pm)

December Dreams—Fine Arts and Crafts Show

C.L.E. Colesium Featuring unique, hand-made arts and crafts from 60 Artists and Artisans from Thunder Bay and Northwestern Ontario. All proceeds from the door go to the Lakehead Rotary Club to benefit local charities.  index/htm December 4, 3pm

Sing Me To Heaven

St. Paul’s United Church Dulcisono Women’s Choir presents music to lift the spirit and celebrate the season. Featuring guest instrumentalists Sean Jesseau, Rob Van Wyck, and Kevin MacLeod. Tickets available at Coran’s, Finnport, and St. Paul’s United Church or call  767-0334

Annual Christmas Craft Sale

West Thunder Community Centre There will be raffles, a bake table and plenty of original gift ideas for families and friends. Admission is $1.  westthunder/index.html December 2 & 3

Art Classes

Painted Turtle Art Shop Take a seasonally inspired cloth and paint workshop, or make your own wrapping paper. Both workshops with artist Crystal Nielsen.  December 2, 4, 9 & 11

December 4 & 11

Thunder Bay Art Gallery Workshops

Thunder Bay Art Gallery Create a fresh evergreen wreath or fashion your own felted ornaments with instructors from Willow Springs Creative Centre.  December 4, 11am

Frostbite Run

Loch Lomond Ski Area This out-and-back 7km run/walk also include a post-adventure hamburger lunch provided at the Neebing. 

December 3, 8pm

Consortium Concert - A Spanish Flavour: Passion and Romance

St. Paul’s United Church Heat up winter with mellow Spanish guitar and soulful vocal music. Joseph Roy, guitar, and Kim Erickson, mezzosoprano perform classics of 19th and 20th century Spain. Admission: $15 adults, $10 (seniors and students), at the door. A preconcert talk at 7:30pm will be given by Maestro Arthur Post.  983-3007 or 345-5864

December 10

Grand Opening: The Urban Bird

Comedian Debra DiGiovanni

Urban Bird This local boutique features a wide variety of home, garden and wild birding products as well as locally made items like living art boxes, bird feeders and blended in-house bird seed mix. Visit them in their permanent home at 112 East Frederica St.  www.theurbanbird.wordpress. com December 8, 7–9pm

Stocking the Youth Cupboard

The Learning Café In its 3rd year, this event will feature live music and readings by local community members to support the Children’s Aid Society’s Independence Cupboard. Admission by nonperishable food item, toiletries, or a cash donation. December 8, 7:30–10:30pm

Lighthouses of the North Shore—Preserving our Heritage

Thunder Bay Art Gallery Featured guest speakers include the Friends of Fathom Five (Lightstation Restoration Project) and Dr. Patricia Kell from Parks Canada’s Heritage Lighthouse Program. The evening will also offer performance from musical guests Flipper Flanagan’s Flat Footed Four, fresh fish appetizers, and a cash bar. This event is free to the public.  December 9 (7pm) & 10 (1pm)

How Little/Much We Know

Vintage Pixie Workshops

Vintage Pixie Studio Create ornaments, an old world Santa, or a Santa made from a dried gourd. All skill levels are welcome and materials are supplied.  www.

December 6, 10am–6pm

December 6–10, 10am–5pm each day

Aboriginal Fine Arts & Crafts Christmas Gift Show Victoriaville Mall Peruse an assortment of handcrafted hats, mitts, moccasins, purses, and jewellery as well as original artwork. Admission is free. December 6, 8pm

Tears and Joy

Hilldale Lutheran Church This year’s Classical Plus series is dedicated to the seemingly effortless genius of Mozart and to the music he inspired in later composers. Featuring TBSO’s Janelle Wiebe and Damian Rivers-Moore playing Hadyn’s “Concerto for 2 Horns.” Tickets are $35. Students pay $15. Available through the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium or at the door. 

December 3, 10am

Salvation Army Santa Shuffle

Current River Recreation Centre This is a 5km fun run or 1km elf walk. 


Hope CRC, 1315 Crawford Street Presented by Eleanor Drury Children’s Theatre, this play is directed by Spencer Hari. Tickets: $7 for Adults and Children Twelve and under $5. December 9–11, 15-18

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol

Fort William Historical Park Rogue Productions presents this theatrical rendition of Dickens’ enduring literary classic about Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and students.  December 10, 11am–4pm

One Day “Holiday” Art Sale

Local Colour Art Gallery Meet and chat with local artists and get free gift wrapping with every purchase. 

Da Vinci Centre Debra DioGiovanni of MuchMusic TV fame brings her brand of comedy to the Bay. Tickets: $30, or table of 8 for $300. Contact the Da Vinci for seating options.  December 10, 8pm

Home for the Holidays

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium A TBSO Classic, the Holiday Pops is one of the most popular presentations of the season. It includes holiday favourites such as “The Nutcracker Suite,” “Hallelujah Chorus,” “White Christmas,” and many more. A great way to get into the holiday spirit. Tickets are $45/Students pay $15.  December 10, 10am–2pm

Christmas in the Waterfront District

Paramount Theatre/Wiggles & Giggles Activities include crafts, horse & buggy rides through the downtown, two holiday-themed movies, and a visit and photo with Santa. Admission: $3 per child. A portion of the proceeds will support the Dew Drop Inn.  December 10, 12–2pm


Ogden Community Centre Goalball is a sport played with two blindfolded teams at either end of a court; if you get past the other team’s end line, you get a point. Free equipment is provided. Appropriate for all ages and abilities.  625-3220 December 11–February 12


Thunder Bay Museum A travelling, juried exhibition of needle arts from all across Canada, sponsored by the Ontario Network of Needle Workers. The subject: trees.  December 16, 6:30–8:30pm

Ours to Celebrate: Introducing Prince Arthur’s Landing to the Community

Activities include a welcoming ceremony, skating, children’s activities, artists’ displays, and fireworks at 8pm.  December 16 & 17, 7pm

The Nutcracker

This very popular holiday tradition comes to life on stage thanks to a world-class performance by the dancers of the Minnesota Ballet. Also featuring the TBSO and 70 local dancers from Studio One. 

DecemberEventsGuide December 31

December 5

New Year’s Eve Gala

Paul Brandt

Victoria Inn Ring in the new year with a prime rib buffet and dancing to Mood Indigo. Tickets: $65 in support of The Boys & Girls Club of Thunder Bay  475-3954

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium $53, AA, 8pm December 8

The Midway State Black Pirates Pub $10, AA, 7:30pm

December 31

Brita’s Resolution Run

The Running Room Kickstart your New Year’s healthy pledges by signing up for this year’s 5 and 10km walk/run. 

Music Events

December 11

Thunder Bay Legends

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium $TBA, AA, 8pm December 13

Calling all Kids! Send us your ideas and win free stuff by recycling. Entries must be received by Dec. 22, 2011. NamE

PhoNE NumbEr

The Sheepdogs

December 1

Calling All Freaks: A Dweezils CD Fundraising Experience

Crocks $15 Advance/$18 Door, 19+, 7pm

Crocks $6, 19+, 9pm

December 21

December 2

Crocks $5, 19+, 10pm

Fourth Annual Speedway Xmas Show

Giver: Charity Dance Event

Crocks $5 (or two canned goods), 19+, 9pm

December 22

Juliann Robbins

Crocks $7, 19+, 9pm

11th Annual Waxmas Throwdown

Scuttlebutts $TBA, 19+, 9pm

December 23

How Jimmy Wiggins Stole Xmas

December 2 & 3

Fort William Male Choir: Prelude to Christmas

Black Pirates Pub $6, 19+, 10pm

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium $TBA, AA, 8pm

December 26

December 3

Crocks $5, 19+, 8pm

The Neebing Roadhouse $5, 19+, 9pm

Super Sexy Saturday

December 31 Crocks $5 Advance/$10 Door, 19+, 9pm

Gordon Lightfoot

December 31, 6–10pm

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

City of Thunder bay, roads Division Waste Diversion and recycling Po box 800, Thunder bay, oN P7C 5K4 attention: Jason Sherband Email:, Fax: 625-3588

New Years Eve Bash

December 4

December 5

Mail or eMail your entry to:

Rocksteady Reggae Xmas Bash Crocks $7, 19+, 9pm

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium $75, AA, 8pm

There is so much waste at this time of year. how can we reduce our impact on our environment?

December 27

December 3 Crocks & Black Pirates Pub $6, 19+, 10pm

Tell us how you and your family will make the holiday season a little ‘greener’ by reducing waste at your house.

Reunion Boxing Day Bash

Party Like It’s 1978 with Flipper Flanagan’s Flat Footed Four

High Valley

New Year’s Family Frolic

An evening of family fun and frolic that includes plenty of food, live entertainment, fun and games, and a fireworks display. Tickets available only at the Visitor Centre. 

Get it In Gear Under the Tree!

1425 Walsh Street West • 622-0007 The Walleye



Public Art in the City With the grand opening of Prince Arthur’s Landing just around the corner, Amy Vervoort explores the resurgence of public art in our city, including the installation of new pieces as part of the waterfront’s revival.

Story and Photos by Amy Vervoort The City’s Public Art Program has seen a significant increase in outdoor installations since 2009. Many are part of the new waterfront development, though much of it is also on display in public spaces throughout the city—along walkways, bridges, and cityowned buildings. Managed through the Recreation & Culture Division, with the advice of the Public Art Committee and the community, the Public Art Program hopes to reflect a sense of change and renewal in the city. “Cities that actively demonstrate their value of arts and culture attract newcomers, new businesses, foster creativity and innovation, and contribute to a diversified economy. There is a lot of potential in Thunder Bay to keep this momentum going,” says Reana Mussato, Public Art Coordinator for the City of Thunder Bay. Local artist Randy Thomas’ work was recently installed as part of the Celebration Circle in the Spirit Garden at Prince Arthur’s Landing. “I strongly believe in keeping tradition and to never forget where you come from,” said Thomas. Inspired by his late father and mentor, Roy Thomas, Randy’s Ahnishnabae Woodland-style imagery not only depicts animals representing the air, land, and water, but also Lifegivers to honour his ancestry. It’s a legacy for generations to come. “As an artist whose work was chosen to be part of the waterfront development, I am naturally very pleased and honoured that my work will be seen and enjoyed by the public for years to come. As a teacher of art and as a citizen of Thunder Bay I am even more pleased that the city is making a commitment to integrate its artists and art in general into the life of the city, “ says Mark Nisenholt, artist and chair of L.U.’s Department of Visual Arts.”As the waterfront spaces becomes more open to the public, we will see and hear the evidence of the new image that the city is creating for itself.” Local voices are heard throughout the waterfront—words turned to steel and stone in various locations in the park. In 1873 Catherine Vickers, daughter of Susanna Moodie, wrote about her experiences in the area. Today her face—along with her husband John’s—adorns a bronze harp on the Vickers Street Bridge. Together they pay tribute to Irish and Scottish immigrants. Hers is just one of many voices, all working toward enriching our lives and beautifying Thunder Bay.


Call 684-4444



The Walleye


Let it Snow

Hoping for an old-fashioned winter By Marlene Wandel

Marlene Wandel

December is the season of waiting—waiting for snow. Environment Canada and the Weather Network must enjoy a surge of traffic as countless snow hounds obsessively check for a forecast with a grain of snow (and a grain of truth) in it. There is always the hope of a storm; there is always the prediction of 10–15 cm of snow five days away—maddeningly, always five days away. We rarely get the forecasted richness, but hope never dies that maybe something will blow in overnight. Some years, it feels like it just doesn’t snow at all, that we spend more time cursing a sullen grey sky than shoveling the steps. The radio blithely announcing “an expected 5–10 cm” can be maddening. Why not forecast 0–10cm? Then our fragile souls won’t be so shattered in the morning by the seven flakes that fell overnight. Eventually, those seven flakes add up to a skiable surface, but it’s just not the same as waking up to a foot of snow, a clean slate, our streets temporarily blanketed in soft white silence.

The last time a huge mass of wet snow was dropped on the city overnight, the buses were cancelled and snowplow drivers were hailed with joy as they came down the street. Neighbours shoveled and chatted together, and even if the chatter was nattering about the weather, it was still camaraderie of a type that rain just doesn’t foster. Without snow, we would only have the cold to delineate this season, and it’s hard to get excited about the cold, even though it’s a dry cold. Two tribes emerge in winter: those who love snow, and those who don’t. Snow fort dwellers vs. sand castle dreamers, as it were. When in Rome, as the saying goes, and we’re not in Rome; we’re in Thunder Bay, where winter tires versus all seasons is a hot topic of conversation, and where workplace parking lots are as likely as not to provide outlets for your block heater. For all the griping about shoveling and scraping the car, don’t we all long for a snow day? Kids instinctively love snow, and exclaim with joy at flurries outside the window. What’s not to love? The miracle of the separate beauty of each delicious flake is a gift. Snow gets us outside in a way that cold temperatures on bare ground never would. Countless skis, snowshoes, skates, snowboards, snowmobiles, and sleds are lovingly prepped, waiting for December’s bounty. The twinkly lights that are starting to blossom on naked branches are magic on a snowy night. Snow softens what would otherwise be a harsh season; formed into a quinzee or an igloo, snow provides shelter from winter’s cold. Like every year, I hope for an old-fashioned winter.

Stock up in December! Weekly Sales Specials all month long

Make great gift ideas!

Inspire an artist with a Gift Certificate!

Christmas Hours; Tues., Wed., Thurs, Fri., Sat., 11am-5pm 132 Cumming Street (off May St.)

Dec 10th

Join us for apple cider, goodies and one of a kind creations

The Walleye


All photos: Chris Merkley

TheEYE - City Sidewalks, Busy Sidewalks, Dressed in Holiday Style....


The Walleye

Volkswagen TDI Clean Diesel engines not only let you drive up to 1190 highway kilometres* on a single tank. They are whisper-quiet, produce ultra low emissions, and treat you to an impressive amount of torque. Contact us to book a test drive.

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*Based on Natural Resources Canada’s estimated fuel consumption ratings of 4.6L/100 km (highway) and 6.7L/100 km (city) for the 2011 Jetta TDI Clean Diesel equipped with manual transmission and a 55L fuel tank capacity. Estimated ratings are 4.6L/100 km (highway) and 6.7L/100 km (city) for the 2011 Golf TDI Clean Diesel (manual transmission), 4.6L/100 km (highway) and 6.7L/100 km (city) for the 2011 Golf Wagon TDI Clean Diesel (manual transmission), and 7.0L/100 km (highway) and 11.1L/100 km (city) for the 2011 Touareg TDI Clean Diesel (automatic transmission). Your fuel consumption may vary depending on road conditions, driving habits and features. US and European models shown. Some options and accessories may vary or may not be available in Canada.

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December 2011  

In this issue: Close to Home - Shop Local for the Holidays, Bread Buns adn Beyond - Thunder Bay Bakeries, Holiday Fondue, Beaujolais Noveau...

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