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Camp Nation









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CoverStory: Camp Nation ■ 8 The Joy of Renting ■ 10 Going Out to Camp ■ 12 Ode to the Outhouse ■ 14 The Republic of Nirivia ■ 16 Yurt Life



■ 18 Bob Katajamaki’s Salt Fish ■ 20 Beer-BQ ■ 21 Edible Art ■ 23 Tea Party



■ 24 Angelique’s Isle ■ 25 The Farndale Murder Mystery ■ 26 Moms on Screen ■ 27 The Stairs THE ARTS

■ 28 Inspired by Nature ■ 29 Ski Ninjas Volume 1 ■ 30 Tangled Arts + Disability ■ 32 A Homegrown Tale of Sorcerers and Secrecy ■ 33 The Conversation




■ 35 Sailing the Big Lake ■ 36 Breaking Down Racial Barriers ■ 37 Take Two for Take a Hike ■ 38 Hug A Tree ■ 39 Rent Panda ■ 40 NOWW Literary Awards Party ■ 41 A Boy from the Woods ■ 43 The Sapling ■ 44 Style Edit ■ 46 Northies ■ 47 Trying to Catch the Spirit ■ 49 Shedding Light on


■ 52 Weather Eye MUSIC

■ 54 Pedestrian Lifestyle ■ 57 Annual Festival Encourages

and Inspires ■ 58 Unity in Threes ■ 59 Feather the Flame ■ 60 Chuck Berry the Musical Giant ■ 62 Every Year a Celebration ■ 63 Hazed and Confused ■ 64 Hollerado Takes the Pressure Off ■ 65 Dustbowl Anthems for the North


■ 70 1 Cumberland Street South GREEN

■ 72 Low Impact Camp Habits HEALTH

■ 72 The Thunder Bay Bike Summit ■ 73 Nature Calls us to Find

Health Outdoors

■ 19 Drink of the Month ■ 42 Stuff We Like ■ 45 This is Thunder Bay ■ 66 Off the Wall Reviews ■ 74 Tbaytel May EVENTS ■ 76 Music EVENTS ■ 77 LU Radio's Monthly Top 20 ■ 78 The Comics ■ 80 The Wall ■ 81 The Beat ■ 82 The Eye

Mental Health ■ 50 Seven Fallen Feathers



walleye the

Thunder Bay’s arts & culture alternative

Editor-in-chief Darren McChristie Editor Adrian Lysenko Associate Editor Amy Jones Senior Editor Tiffany Jarva

Contributing Editor Rebekah Skochinski Copy Editors Amy Jones, Kirsti Salmi

Marketing & Sales Manager Maija Zucchiatti ​ Photographers Patrick Chondon, Bill Gross, Scott Hobbs, Dave Koski, Darren McChristie, Marty Mascarin, Laura Paxton, Tyler Sklazeski. Chad Kirvan Art Directors Steve Coghill, R.G.D., Dave Koski, R.G.D. Ad Designer Dave Koski Miranda van den Berg

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 © 2017 by Superior Outdoors Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Editorial and Advertising: Submissions must be accompanied by a selfaddressed, stamped envelope. Superior Outdoors cannot be held responsible for unsolicited material. Superior Outdoors Inc. 15C St. Paul Street, Thunder Bay, ON P7A 4S4 Telephone (807) 344-3366; Fax (807) 623-5122 E-mail:

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From Our Twitter Feed

Heading to Camp

Featured Contributor Karl Oczkowski


t’s almost that time of year again, when weekends are spent in the hinterland around the bonfire, brews are enjoyed, and if you’re brave enough, jumping into the lake after a sweat in the sauna. Yes, it’s time to head to camp. With the arrival of May 2-4 (sorry, Victoria Day for all you monarchists) many Thunder Bay residents will be going to camp for the long weekend, so what better month to devote an issue to “camp life”? Have you ever wondered where the term “going to camp” came from? As part of our cover story, writer Bonnie Schiedel does some investigating into the history of logging camps that surrounded the city to see if there’s any link. Also, Betty Carpick explores the history of Nirivia, the selfproclaimed republic of islands and stretch of wilderness on Lake Superior. And if you’re ever looking for your own private island to build a camp, we compare what the same amount of money for an island will get you in Toronto. Plus, who says camps have to have four wooden walls? Julia Prinselaar looks at yurts as an alternative to the traditional cabin. And lastly,


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for many people early memories of camp involve venturing to the outhouse. We share some photos of unique outhouses submitted by our readers. Keeping with our theme, our menswear curator Lyle Morissette offers some advice on what to wear for the longweekend camp getaway, Chef Rachel Globensky shares a sacred family Finnish salt fish recipe, and Sommelier Jeannie Dubois pairs two of our favourite things: beers and barbecues. Also this month, we help Black Pirates Pub celebrate nine years as a staple of the city’s vibrant music scene, we see what it’s like to sail Lake Superior with the Thunder Bay Yacht Club, and Emma Christensen chats with local filmmaker Michelle Derosier about her feature length film Angelique’s Isle. So whether it's on the dock, in the cabin, or in the outhouse, sit back, relax and enjoy this month’s issue.

- Adrian Lysenko

Karl was born and raised in Kingston, Ontario. He moved to Thunder Bay in March 2016 and shortly thereafter began contributing to The Walleye. After completing his Masters in journalism at Western University, he worked as a writer before moving to Thunder Bay to take on a new role as a communications consultant. An avid motorcyclist and photographer in his free time, he just launched an independent consulting business, and consistently demonstrates the symptoms of being a news junkie. Check out Karl’s story on Chris “Merk” Merkley’s new graphic novel on page 32.

On the Cover Camp Nation Photo by Darren McChristie with post-production by Richard Tiihonen and Steve Coghill. Special thanks to Vicki Nikkila and Kirstin Smith.

Explore the Gunflint Trail Loons, lodges, shimmering water, pristine Minnesota forest. That’s what

Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center Activities

you’ll find along the Gunflint Trail. Watch morning mist caress a glacier-carved lake. Fish by boat or

MAY 27 - Opening Day TUESDAYS, JUNE 27-AUG 22 - Free Kids Day. Chik-Wauk staff will offer a variety of hands-on

canoe for walleye, smallmouth and lake trout. Take your first Boundary Waters canoe trip with the help of a friendly outfitter. The Gunflint Trail is a gateway to the BWCAW, which has been named one of the world’s “50 Places of a Lifetime” by National Geographic.

The Gunflint Trail has… • • • • • • • •

57 miles of paved scenic byway 23 unique lodges 227 miles of hiking trails 62 miles of biking trails 8 campgrounds 237,737 acres of BWCAW 35 entrance points to the BWCAW 547 wilderness campsites (not part of a campground and located within the BWCAW)

(Hours 11am-4pm; check website for presentation times)

activities, as well as stories, hikes, journal making and craft projects.

TUESDAYS, JUNE 20–AUG 22 - US Forest Service naturalists present on a different Northwoodsthemed topic. JUNE 4 - Treasures from the Dungeon by Steve Veit. Take a virtual tour of Grand Portage National Monument’s Museum Collections. JUNE 25 - Loons by Phyllis Sherman. JULY 23 - Gunflint & Lake Superior Railroad by Dave Battistel. The story of a Wisconsin logging company whose headquarters was located in Port Arthur, Ontario. AUGUST 27 - Geology of our area by Don Wendel. A presentation on the Saganaga Batholith for which Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center now stand.

Other Gunflint Trail Special Activities and Events (check website for times and details)

MAY 13 - Minnesota Fishing Opener JUNE 17-18 - BWCA Expo – Seagull Lake public landing. Speakers, activities, hands-on demos, shrimp boil and bake sale, and more!

JUNE 19-JULY 14 - Wet your Paddle program, various locations. Want to try out the latest craft models on a Gunflint Trail BWCAW lake? Never ventured out in a canoe? Here’s your chance to try it for FREE with experienced, friendly outfitters with the Wet Your Paddle program. Paddling instructions and lake travel knowledge provided by resident Gunflint Trail Canoe Outfitters. One hour of FREE hand-ons, paddles in the water!” JULY 19 - Gunflint Trail Canoe Races - Gunflint Lodge


VCC_Walleye_Explore Gunflint_WallEye_9x11_Fullpage.indd 1 The Walleye 4/13/17


2:01 PM

Win cool prizes with the Walleye’s Top Five in 5 Challenge! Enjoy fine dining, catching a local show? May is your last chance to win one of our super sweet prize packages simply by attending one of our Top Five events. This month's prize packages are courtesy of The Keg, Crocks, New Day Records, Dog Lake Firewood, Toy Sense and Copperfin Credit Union.

For more details visit

Thanks for the Love Thunder Bay! The Walleye was honoured to win two awards at the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce 23rd Annual Business Excellence Awards: the Quality of Life Award and the GameChanger Award. Huge thanks to all of our talented contributors, loyal readers, and advertisers—congratulations to all nominees and winners!


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BPP Nine Year Anniversary Bash May 3–6

Black Pirates Pub Help celebrate nine years of local music at the Black Pirates Pub Ninth Anniversary Bash, featuring 20 acts over four nights of killer performances from a who’s who of local favourites, including Forever Dead, Jean-Paul De Roover, Married Singlemen, Visions of Doyle, Android 16, Greenbank, Morning Light, Bottom Rockers, Cold Lake Sun, and more. Each night is only $5, and performances Thursday – Sunday run 10 pm until 2 am, with an all-ages show on Wednesday night from 7 pm–11:30 pm. As well, brand new t-shirts (men’s and women’s sizes) will be available for sale every night.


Folklore Festival May 6–7

Fort William Gardens

Take a trip around the world in 48 hours at the Thunder Bay Multicultural Association’s annual Folklore Festival. Now in its 44th year, the festival features displays, exhibits, and performances from over a dozen cultural groups in the city—as well, of course, as a mouth-watering array of ethnic cuisine. And in the evening, enjoy live music by headliners 21 Gun Fun, showcasing music from Canada, the US, and around the world. Don’t miss out on your chance to join in and celebrate the rich cultural diversity of our city at one of Thunder Bay’s most time-honoured events.


Sixth Annual Craft Revival May 7

Various Locations Thunder Bay’s spring craft extravaganza is back for another year, with all your favourite vendors as well as some brand new venues to switch things up. This year’s venues include The Foundry, Prime Gelato, the Prince Arthur Waterfront Hotel and Suites, Red Lion Smokehouse, Déjà vu Consignment, Pneumaticity, and Sweet North. There will also be tribal fusion bellydance and aerial silk performances, as well as live music at Red Lion and The Foundry and lots of opportunities to win door prizes at each venue, as well as the grand prize of a two-night stay at Beyond the Giant nature retreat. And stick around The Foundry afterward for Celtic Revival, featuring two intimate sets by master fiddler Pierre Schryer and guitarist/vocalist Clay Breiland, who will take you through a musical mélange of reels, jigs, lamenting airs, songs, bluesy tunes, and more! The duo will be joined on the third set by Lads of the Lake and Friends, to end the night with the ultimate kitchen party atmosphere! Show starts at 7:30 pm, cover is $10 at the door.


The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen's Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery May 17-20, 24-27 Finlandia Club

In what we are sure won’t be a self-fulfilling prophecy, Cambrian Players presents this comedy, written by David McGillivray and Walter Zerlin Jr. and directed by Beverley Gravelle-MacLeod, about the horrors of what can go wrong on opening night of a community theatre production. Almost everything that can go wrong does for the ladies of the F.A.H.E.T.G. as they attempt to present their ambitious evening’s entertainment, the whodunit “Murder at Checkmate Manor.” Tickets are $15-$20; check their website or find them on Facebook for details on where to purchase.


Good Lovelies May 27

Urban Abbey

For their final concert of the season, Sleeping Giant Folk Music Society presents the Toronto indie-folk band Good Lovelies. With the release of their long-awaited new album, Burn The Plan, Good Lovelies showcase their considerable strengths— winsome songwriting, impeccable vocals, and triangulated charisma—as well as a new spirit of adventurousness that gives Burn The Plan an extra spark. Don’t miss the chance to see this exciting band live. Tickets are $35 in advance. Door tickets are $35 for Sleeping Giant Folk Music Society members and $40 for nonmembers. Advance tickets are available at Fireweed and Chaltrek. The Walleye

7 3


Camp Nation A

dmit it, Northwestern Ontarians: a tiny, gleeful part of you revels in correcting those who say “cottage” to describe vacationing in our neck of the woods. You know as well as we do—here, it’s camp. We’re blessed with fine shorelines and forest, and we don’t need anything fancy to enjoy it (take note, Muskoka!) It’s May, and you’re craving crackling bonfires, sweltering saunas, and lazy long weekends at the lake. The Walleye celebrates camp life with you this month—just don’t leave your copy in the outhouse.

The Joy of Renting

Camp Life for the Commitment-Phobic


or many of us, the idea of owning a piece of property on Lake Superior is about as attainable as owning a piece of property on the moon. Whether you’re short on money, short on time, or just scared of commitment, renting can be an excellent alternative to owning a camp. Renting means no mortgage payments or property taxes, no having to fix the rotting deck boards or that leaky roof, and no ongoing feuds with snooty neighbours—and best of all, you can post up at a different location every summer (or every week, if you want!). To get you started, we’ve scoped out some stellar rental locations on the greatest lake. All you need is your swimsuit and cooler (and possibly your toque) and you’re ready to go!


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Eldorado Beach Chalet Location: Shuniah Price: $199 per night Accommodates: 4+ Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 1 Located on the shore of Lake Superior, this beautiful, recently renovated A-frame chalet-style camp has a large deck, hot tub, kayaks, paddleboards, bikes, an outdoor fire pit, as well as an indoor fireplace for renters to enjoy. The camp offers the best of both worlds with plenty of privacy from neighbours while only 25 minutes from the city and 10 minutes away from the nearest convenience store. Accommodations include two queen beds (one in the bedroom and one in the loft), and there is a large 15x15 foot tipi with a queen bed and electricity for extra guests. Booking info:

CoverStory Highlander Camp on Mink Bay Location: Neebing Price: $287 per night Accommodates: 6 Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 2

Who says you can’t have luxury while being surrounded by the pristine nature of Lake Superior on one side and Mink Mountain on the other? With leather furniture, hardwood floors, custom built granite countertops, as well as a clawfoot bathtub, this camp offers a taste of luxury. Plus, this little piece of paradise is a short walk to picnic point—ideal for a midday hike. Or... you can just stay put and enjoy the view from the large covered porch while sipping on your favourite cocktail. Booking info:

Wild Goose Beach Camp Location: Shuniah Price: $150 per night Accommodates: 6 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 1

Is there anything better than a hot summer day spent on the sandy banks of Wild Goose Beach as the waves roll in off Lake Superior? Well how about your own private beach adjacent to Wild Goose park? This recently renovated camp features two bedrooms (plus a bunkie), kitchen, BBQ, and a beautiful unobstructed view of the Sleeping Giant. And to top it off, the rental includes access to four kayaks and lifejackets for guests to use, as well as firewood for campfires (s’mores!). Booking info:

Loon’s Nest on Superior Location: Neebing Price: $230 per night Accommodates: 6 Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 1

Enjoy the beautiful vista of Lake Superior’s Mink Bay from the comfort of a campfire or soaking in a hot tub at this lakefront getaway, aptly named Loon’s Nest. The camp’s open concept and large windows are perfect for wildlife watching or just enjoying the beautiful surroundings. The kitchen is equipped with basic sundries and there is a washer and dryer for longer stays. If you feel like exploring, there are plenty of nearby hiking trails and practically endless coastline to explore by kayak, canoe, or paddleboard (whatever floats your boat!). Booking info: The Walleye


Photo courtesy of John Styffe


By Bonnie Schiedel


n Thunder Bay, we say we’re going to “camp” rather than “the cottage.” Ever wonder why? There’s a theory that it refers to logging camps, with the idea that people would go to visit relatives, but it’s hard to say if that’s actually the case. “I can't say I’ve ever heard about the origins of ‘camp,’” says Tory Tronrud, director of the Thunder Bay Museum. “However, there were hundreds of logging camps spread around the area for decades on end, so it’s reasonable to suppose that ‘visiting the logging camp’ would not be uncommon.” With that in mind, The Walleye checked in with Michel Beaulieu, associate professor in the history department at Lakehead University, to see what these logging camps were like. • Until the turn of the twentieth century, logging was mainly done for firewood and building materials. The rise of the demand for newsprint in the early 1920s, however, resulted in a huge expansion of logging.


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• Most logging was done in the late fall and winter, because it was easier to haul out logs over snow and ice with horse-drawn sleds. Come spring, operations were often near creeks and rivers in order to float logs to other areas for shipment. • In 1920, there were 20,000 people working in Ontario camps, mostly in central and northern Ontario. That number reached 30,000 by the 1940s. In the northwest, many workers were francophones and Finnish immigrants who were classified as seasonal unskilled labourers, but there were also sons of farmers who needed work during the winter, and professionals who worked for the company year-round, doing skilled jobs like selecting and topping trees. • The pay was good. At the turn of the twentieth century, a general hand would get $16 a month while a skilled professional would earn $35-40. Pay fluctuated depending on market conditions. Many preferred piecework,

Wilfred Brown/the Thunder Bay Public Library collection

A History of Logging Camps

Photo courtesy of the Thunder Bay Museum

Going Out to Camp


• The 1950s saw the rise of mechanization: skidders rather than horses and one-person chainsaws rather than handsaws.

• Pre-1950, a typical camp would have two long log buildings surrounded by plenty of stumps. One building was the bunkhouse or sleep camp, with wooden trough-like areas for sleeping (head to the wall) and lines strung up to dry washing. The dining camp or kitchen camp had tables and benches with a kitchen at one end and the stables for the horses just outside. By the late 40s and early 50s, the log buildings began to be abandoned in favour of frame structures that were cheaper and faster to build and could be moved to another camp at the end of the season. Most camps housed between 50 and 125 people.

• In 1947-48 there were 720 logging camps in Ontario with 38,000 workers and by 1961-62 there were 337 camps with about 15,000 workers, reflecting the trend to commuter operations— the overall number of workers was about the same, but fewer were living in the camps.

Photo courtesy of the Thunder Bay Museum

• The stereotype of plaid-wearing loggers staying up drinking all night isn’t all that accurate. (These guys were tired.) In the evenings and on Sundays, there would be some music, particularly Finnish accordions, poker played for matchsticks, mending and washing of clothes, and some English lessons.

Chances are, your time at camp also involves cutting logs, playing cards, and perhaps a little Finnish accordion music. Next time, raise a glass to salute the lumberjacks that came before you.

Photo courtesy of the Thunder Bay Museum

• It was dangerous work. In 1929, for example, there were over 2000 serious accidents—that’s about 10% of the workforce.

• Logging camps got a surprising number of visitors, including priests, peddlers who often doubled as photographers, literacy instructors from Frontier College, and union organizers.

Photo courtesy of the Thunder Bay Museum

• Eight thousand German POWs lived in Ontario bush camps during WWII, and many worked in logging. They were paid about $12 a month compared to $20 a month for a general labourer, but much of that money was routed back to the federal Receiver General.

Wilfred Brown/the Thunder Bay Public Library collection

where they’d be paid by the cord. (This competition fostered the idea of the burly manly lumberjack.) The camps were all male, although the cooks were often women, who would earn two or three times more in the camp than they would cooking in town.

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Ode to the Outhouse


hether you don’t have the luxury of indoor plumbing at your camp or you’re just nostalgic about the old privy that came with the property, many TBayers have some cool and creative outhouses. Here’s some that were submitted by our readers. Thanks for giving us the scoop on where you… well, you know.

“These pics are of our outhouse at Mountain Bay (Gravel River) on Lake Superior before and after a facelift. Thanks to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore for the new(ish) door! It’s a lovely two-seater with a view of the lake." -Albertine and Chris L

"Here's a picture of our luxury open air outhouse that we would use on our tenting camping trips." -Emma S “My parents, Krystyna Perron and David Feldbruegge, installed this new outhouse at camp last year, on O'Sullivan Lake. It is total luxury compared to our old one. The new one is built of timber framing construction from jack pine logs, some probably peeled by me when I was a teenager. It is the envy of the lake. Like all camps they have reused components— the handle is from the old wood cook stove.” -Denise B.

“I am submitting this photo of the 55 year old outhouse at our family camp. Even though ‘she’ doesn't get a lot of use these days due to indoor plumbing installed a few years ago, ‘she’ stands proud of her natural creativity and is still in working order!”

“My dad Barry Kucher wanted me to send along his outhouse pictures, he built it himself and it's the envy of Mink Bay. How can you not love the purple carpet! I always thought it looked somewhat like a spacecraft with the metal work peak at the top.”

-Elaine N.

-Kristy W


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Outhouse of Vicki N and Kirstin S on Lottit Lake.

“My dad built it himself from scratch from curved cedar logs found on our camp lot. The more bent, the better, he said! The ceiling is curved inside as well. It smells like cedar inside and not like outhouse.” -Paige Alexandra K.

“It was built for my daughter’s wedding so it’s chapel-like and made from white pine.” -Grant S.

Made with western red cedar, Grant’s outhouses are comfortable, clean, and have character inside and out.

“[Our outhouse] was modelled after Dr. Who's TARDIS or a police phone box.” -Donna G.

“We have two... My husband is a carpenter and we have fun collecting things for the hardware. One is near his shop and the other is down by our sauna.” -Penny P. The Walleye



On Mount St. Ignace

The Republic of Nirivia

Protecting an Enchanted Place By Betty Carpick


ur attraction to isolated natural habitats and establishing peaceful social alliances seem hardwired into the human psyche. Throughout time, many of the same traits that built communities 200,000 years ago have been manifested through a convergence of renegade spirit, spontaneous improvisation, and deep convictions about the sanctity of place. In North America in the early 1960s, counter cultural activity celebrated experimentation, alternate lifestyles, and a rethinking of mainstream modes of authority. Northwestern Ontario was no exception. Concern for the environmental fragility and integrity of 59 islands 119 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay in Lake Superior’s Nipigon Bay prompted naturalists from Thunder Bay and Nipigon to investigate its ownership. A land claim filed by the Indigenous bands connected to the Robinson-Superior Treaty of 1850 didn’t include the area. And, according to the group’s reinterpretation of the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of 1842, neither did the Government of Canada have a claim to the land. Late one night in the fall of 1977, electrified by whiskey, the magic of a campfire, and the conviction of noble outliers, Rusty Evans, Gerry Landry, Chris Slatterly, and John Reid declared the territory the Republic of Nirivia. Admittedly, the name was a distillation


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of Nirvana, but the eponym resonated. Soon, David Kruszewski, Gordon Dampier, and Lennie Mukala joined the Nirivia Wilderness Association. Following due diligence, a charter was drawn with the objectives of developing and preserving the islands as a multi-use wilderness area for future generations and preventing heavy resource extraction. Titles for Nirivians were designated and the building the republic began in earnest with the writing of an anthem and the naming of the blue heron as the national bird and the lady’s slipper as the national flower. In October 1979, the Nirivia flag was raised on a 20-foot jackpine pole on St. Ignace Island, the centerpiece and largest of the verdant cluster of islands in the 342 square kilometre domain. The declaration of nationhood was picked up by the Associated Press and the reality of the secession came to light. “First and foremost, Nirivia is a state of mind claimed for the good of the planet,” Jim Stevens, a writer and Earl of Nirivia, emphasized amidst the profusion of media attention. Given that Nirivia’s national currency was friendship, this act of political theatre was a creative way to get the government to back off from bureaucratic decision making that didn’t acknowledge the distinctiveness of the northern landscape and the importance of environmental preservation.

▼Raptor Boat at Bowman Island

CoverStory respected the spirit of Nirivia. Today, much of Nirivia is officially designated as conservation lands. In 2007, Parks Canada named more than 10,000 square kilometres of Lake Superior, including many of Nirivia’s islands, as Canada’s first National Marine Conservation Area, the largest marine conservancy in the world. The seabed, water, and aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems are protected and managed for sustainability much like the Nirivia Charter declared almost 40 years ago, a true testament to the power of citizens fighting for environmental protection—no matter how crazy it may seem at the time.

Should You Buy A Condo in Toronto or (Part of) an Island in Northwestern Ontario? Toronto, we love you. We do. But we’ve run the stats and we think we know which way this cookie is gonna crumble.

Sarrat Island

Keele Street, North York

Location: Near Red Rock

Location: Not even close to anything resembling Toronto

Price: $189,178 (US) Size: 1.5 acres Includes: A 16x32 camp, an 8x10 storage building, an outhouse, and a dock View: Lake Superior panoramas, sprawling birch, spruce, and pine forests along distant shores Nearby Activities: Fishing, hunting, taking in romantic sunsets while rekindling your love for each other, finally feeling at peace

Pie Island ▲ Talbot Island Cliffs ▼ Reid's Rock

Private Islands Inc.

With the intent to truly transform Nirivia into a multi-use wilderness area, visitors were welcome onto its shores as long as activities such as hiking, camping, kayaking, bird watching, and fishing didn’t cause harm. Eventually, through land-use permits, the Nirivians were able to build permanent domed cabins and to transform the logging roads from the 1920s into hiking and cross-country skiing trails. Since 1985, Nirivian Islands Expeditions has offered charter boat service and tour packages to access the dramatic scenery and rugged terrain. Honorary certificates of citizenship were available for all visitors who

Location: Five miles southwest of Thunder Bay Price: $890,000 Size: 358 acres Includes: Two miles of beachfront on Lake Superior, half a mile of frontage on Perch Lake View: Gorgeous lake vistas, peaceful, gently swaying trees, every star in the northern sky Nearby activities: Swimming, boating, hiking, fishing, cavorting with woodland creatures, standing on your deck surveying your vast domain like the queen you are, general contentment with your life

Price: $189,900 Size: 1 bedroom, 1 bath, 500 square feet Includes: Parking for an extra $20 a month, a washer and dryer “as-is” View: The 401 Nearby Activities: There’s a Burger King across the street

Nassau Street, Kensington Market Location: Next door to a car rental agency on one side and a bar on the other Price: $950,000 Size: 2 bedroom, 2 bath, 1200 square feet, built to 0.019 acre lot Includes: A storefront downstairs that used to be a cannabis dispensary View: Parking lot across the street, drunks staggering out of the bar next door Nearby activities: Chasing away all the people who think they can still buy weed downstairs, renting a car

The Walleye



Yurt Life

Year-Round Comfort for the Mind, Body, and Soul

Story by Julia Prinselaar, photos by Darren McChristie

▲ The centre ring is one of the most consistent features throughout all yurt designs


sed for generations by nomadic tribes of Central Asia, the yurt has been adopted by Western camp culture as an inviting alternative to the traditional cabin. Originally crafted from materials like local wood, felt, and braided animal hair, most of these domed portable living structures are now outfitted with contemporary aluminum rivets, aircraft cables, and polyester fabric. Yet the yurt’s quintessential circular arch remains the same, making it durable enough to weather extreme northern elements. Over the decades, Mark Hansen, founder of North House Folk School in Grand Marais, has spent a considerable amount of time camping and living in yurts in the Nipigon area tracking caribou, and interacting with local Indigenous communities outside of Armstrong. As an advocate of microliving, he builds boats, makes tents and huts, teaches tiny-home building, and fashions a lifestyle directly related to living out and remote. “The yurt really intrigued me and I started off by making small ones,” says Hansen, whose tiniest yurt spans a diameter of about 2.5 meters. Approaching his mid-60s, Hansen praises structures like these for their ability to keep warm and weather the elements. “The older I get, the more interested I am in being comfortable,” he says.


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One winter, Hansen spent 10 days in a four-metre yurt insulated with wool Polish army blankets and bubble wrap along the walls. Despite the nighttime temperature approaching -45Cº, the yurt was so warm that a nearby frog came out of dormancy and started chirping. “We were set into a spruce bog,” he says. “We woke up a frog and [it] chirped every night at about five o'clock or so—just to give you an idea of how warm it got. There’s no debate you can make them comfortable.” While the yurt’s circular architecture lends itself to a communal setting for small groups of people, its modest size can offer solitude and sanctuary. “It’s a very interesting thing, living in a small place. It brings people become maybe a little more contemplative,” says Hansen. “The whole idea of the hut has got a very spiritual history.” Hansen sees a connection between yurts and broader perspectives and philosophies around living lightly and intimately with the land. He refers to the term “wabi-sabi,” the Japanese art of finding beauty in imperfection and profundity in nature, and the hermits of Japan who followed this spiritual path. “These people lived in little huts, little tiny enclosures that provided them what they needed, a place to eat and sleep, prepare food… They cherished the impermanence of life, the idea that nothing is

CoverStory permanent, that perfection is an illusion, that nothing’s ever finished in this life. It’s a complete contradiction from the society that we live in now.” This style of living is often reserved for the fringe-masters of society. It’s not for everyone. But on a universal level, the practice of setting out into the wilderness with little more than what’s needed to survive allows the camper to tap into a simpler existence. It also offers a sense of meaning—and if we’re really paying attention, says Hansen, connection and belonging. “These are the reasons why we camp. We camp in order to live impoverished. And it’s a forced impoverishment, which is very, very curious. If you’re a pantheist—if you worship nature—you’re in Church; you’re in a womb sort of setting, and you’re a part of the planet that you live on and that gives a sense of, for me, comfort,” he says. “We need to figure out a way to make time away from ourselves an important part of a person’s being. To make that a priority in people’s lives, just like sleep and everything else.”

▼ A modern 30-foot yurt (9 m) offers over 700 ft2 of living space

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Bob Katajamaki’s Salt Fish By Chef Rachel Globensky


lifelong foodie, my stepdad Bob has taught me a lot about cooking, and about producing your own food. We lived on a hobby farm near Nolalu, and had fresh eggs, milk, beef, pork, and chicken, and oodles of veggies year-round. I certainly didn’t appreciate how good I had it at home until I moved out and had to grocery shop on my own—the store-bought chicken was tasteless, the beef was fatty, and the produce

was listless and waxy! (Thankfully, Thunder Bay’s local food-producing scene has evolved since then!) As a young adult, I often left with yummy “care packages” after visiting the farm (I still do!). Bob prides himself on his home-grown dinners and even at 70 still loves to host meals for family, neighbours, and any “waifs and strays” I bring home. One of the foods Bob makes superbly is Finnish salt fish, or suolakala

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Adrian Lysenko

(pronounced: soo-la-ka-la); it’s a staple at any family gathering. Similar to Swedish gravlax, suolakala is cured fish, flavoured primarily with salt, dill, and vodka or gin, served on rye bread and sprinkled with green onion. Our family uses salmon for this, usually, but if we’re lucky, my brother Dan will have some fresh trout on hand. A fatty fish works best for this purpose, as its creaminess balances well with the salt,

and the end result is firm but not tough. Like most excellent home cooks, Bob doesn’t use measuring spoons or cups, or follow a recipe for most of his dishes. I did manage two pin down a booklet he wrote while teaching a salt fish class at the Metropolitan Moose a few years back. He’s talked about putting together another class, as he had a lot of fun doing the first one—let me know if you’d be interested!


Makes enough for 6, with leftovers, if there are any…

2 skin-on, centre-cut salmon or trout fillets (about 1 lb each)

Wash fillets under cold water and dry with paper towel. Run your hand over the flesh and ensure all bones are out (clean tweezers work well to pick out tiny bones). Lay one fillet in a glass or pottery baking dish, skin side down.

¼ c vodka or gin 2 tbsp peppercorns 1 tbsp coriander seeds 1 tsp dry mustard 2 tbsp kosher salt 2 tbsp white or brown sugar 1 large bunch fresh dill

Sprinkle 2 tbsp vodka or gin over fish.

Using a mortar and pestle (or a zipper bag and a rolling pin), crush/mix the peppercorns, coriander, and dry mustard together; add salt and sugar, and mix well. Liberally sprinkle half of the mixture over the boozy fillet.

Lay half of the dill fronds on top and press gently.

Northern Landscapes Festival May 31 - June 4, 2017 Discover the birds, wildflowers, insects, and rocks of this dynamic and rich northern landscape.


Drink of the Month

Sharabi Mango Lassi


588 West Arthur Street 286-6315


FEATURING Minnesota Public Radio’s

Paul Huttner


Story by Rebekah Skochinski, Photo by Adrian Lysenko Nothing gets lost in translation when it comes to recreating the tastes of the Punjab region here in Thunder Bay. Typically, a mango lassi is made with fresh mangoes and yogurt, served in stainless steel tumblers and enjoyed for breakfast or as a refreshing antidote to very hot days. Monsoon’s version, the Sharabi Mango Lassi, takes this classic Punjabi milkshake to even greater heights. They start with their house-made mango sauce and 2% yogurt, and for fun, add an ounce of Bacardi white rum and an ounce of Baileys Irish Cream. Everything is shaken heartily with ice until evenly chilled. It’s no surprise that rum and mango are fast friends, but the inclusion of that creamy whisky cocoa Baileys flavour makes it extra special. Garnished with a coral swirl of mango sauce, fresh mint, and a round slice of lemon, this drink will make you feel as though you’re walking on sunshine.


JUNE 16 - 18, 2017 FEATURED SPEAKERS Mark Neuzil and Norman Sims

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Beer-BQ By Jeannie Dubois, Certified Sommelier


atios and decks across the city are finally free of the last tenacious patches of cold snow and grills are heating up everywhere as barbecue season begins in earnest here on the sunny north shore of the big lake. Grilling with gusto is as breezy as the prevailing

westerlies around these parts, especially with the explosion of flavourful offerings courtesy of the ever-growing craft beer industry in Ontario and abroad. The fastest growing styles in brewing lean towards ale/ lager hybrids, citrus-driven hop

Lindemans Cuvee Rene Gueuze

Nickel Brook Green Apple Pilsner

Belgium LCBO No. 224824 $7.00 for 355ml pair with grilled tilapia and balsamic butter

Ontario LCBO No. 198358 $3.00 for 473ml pair with grilled pork chops and apple rings, onion, and sage

offerings, sours of every sort from gose to gueuze, every-fruitunder-the-sun infused brews, and deliciously dark after dinner drinks. The major boon about these beers (besides the fact that they taste really great) is that they are ridiculously food-friendly and have enough flavour to pair

perfectly with every plate that comes smoking off the grill.

in both to amplify the desired character in each.

Two schools of thought prevail when pairing drinks and dishes: either finding contrasting flavours to enhance the individual character of both or finding complementary flavours

Nothing says big like barbecue, so go ahead and get grilling, and pump up the volume with a complimentary craft brew that won’t go unheard against all that dish’s delicious noise. Try:

Charlie Wells Dry Hopped Lager

Sawdust City Gateway Kolsch (Lagered Ale)

England LCBO No. 476887 $2.60 for 500ml pair with grilled leg of lamb and whole garlic with rosemary

Ontario LCBO No. 449892 $2.95 for 473ml pair with grilled tofu and pineapple salsa with toasted coconut

Flying Monkeys Aurora Heart Chocolate Raspberry Stout Ontario LCBO No. 460600 $10.95 for 750ml pair with grilled chicken legs in mole sauce with cashews

Sleeping Giant Snow Goose Coffee Vanilla Porter Ontario In Store at SGBC $5.50 for 500ml pair with grilled coffee-rubbed ribeye and chile butter



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Edible Art

Milk and Water Baking Co. By Adrian Lysenko


ith creative designs and vibrant colours, Ellen Bright’s cupcakes almost look too good to eat... almost. The owner of Milk and Water Baking Co. has baking in her blood and and has turned her passion into a business. “I'm not from a line of professional bakers, but cake decorating is something my grandma and aunts were into as a hobby, as well as being avid bakers,” she says. “My mom was always big into baking as well. We would be the kids at school with

homemade chocolate chip cookies and brownies for our snack instead of Fruit Roll-Ups and Dunkaroos.” Bright started Milk and Water Baking Co. when she obtained a chocolate cake recipe from her mother, which she uses for her cakes and cupcakes. “I made it first for dessert at a dinner party two years ago and was inspired by my grandma's cake decorating and covered the cake in buttercream roses,” she says. “A friend saw the picture and thought it was unique and pretty

and wanted to order one for her daughter's birthday party and it just grew from there. In a way it feels like carrying on a family tradition.” In the beginning Bright says she was mostly making cakes for friends so the designs were inspired by their subjects. But now she’s usually given colour choices to work with and uses various icing tips to create different looks. “I love making anything pretty and whimsical, so if the theme is mermaid or unicorn or ‘do whatever you want’ that is

the most fun for me,” she says. “Inspiration can come from the occasion, the season, or sometimes I look at colour combinations from book covers or artwork around my house.” Keep an eye out in the next month or two as Bright is planning to open up a small pop-up shop on 215 Red River Road, where customers can still continue to place specific orders but there will also be cakes, cupcakes, cookies, brownies, cake doughnuts, meringues, and more available for purchase.

“Things were getting too busy to run out of my house while still working another job part time so this was a very natural progression,” she says. “I'm excited to have these products more readily available for people so that they won't have to plan a month ahead to have their cake and eat it too.” For more information find Milk and Water Baking Co. on Facebook or on Instagram at @ milkandwaterbakingco


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251.2891 to book your Manicure The Walleye


More ways to save the planet…

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Coming up this month at EcoSuperior:

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Recycle your E-waste and tires Saturday May 6 at OLG Casino Thunder Bay Parking lot Landscape your yard with wildflowers at our Wildflower Plant Sale Saturday, May 27 9 am – 1 pm at our office Re-use and recycle at EcoSuperior’s Yard Sale Saturday June 3, 9 am – noon. Rain Barrels and Composters on sale too! erior Natio up

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Tea Party

Taking Thyme for High Tea Story and photo by Tara George


ounds lovely,” a friend replied when I asked her if she would like to join me in partaking in one of Britain’s finest rituals—high tea. Observed only by the wealthy during its inception in the mid-1800s, the afternoon tea serves as a light meal to hold over one’s appetite between a late breakfast and a late dinner. Inspired by her time at the Empress Hotel in Victoria, BC, where afternoon tea has been served to royalty and dignitaries alike, Geri Little, the owner of Thyme restaurant (with her husband Ken) have brought this time-treasured tradition to Thunder Bay. Every second Sunday, the tables in their already beautiful space are donned with linen table cloths and delicate china tea cups and place settings to complement the beauty of the delectable treats. As my companions and I arrive, we are presented with champagne while we select our choice of loose-leaf tea that is locally sourced from the International House of Tea (complete with a signature thyme blend).

“There are three courses,” our server Carla explains as she places down the first—scones with the most delicious Devonshire cream and in-house made strawberry jam—and I’m immediately sold. The next is an array of finger sandwiches, which of course, as you would imagine, includes a cucumber sandwich. The third course is more like a work of art, with a presentation of the most delicate and scrumptious desserts, all made in-house by Thyme’s new pastry chef. Understandably, the high tea has been a hit, with every offering sold out. In fact, it has become somewhat of an event for some guests, who dress up in their Sunday best, complete with hats. Further catering to the delight of a tea party, Thyme has also held a Teddy Bear Tea for the younger patrons, and plans to do one in the future due to the high demand. “We listen to what Thunder Bay wants and we do our best to offer it,” Little says. For more information, find Thyme on Facebook. Seatings are $30/adult and $15/child. The Walleye



Morningstar Derosier

Dave Clement. “This story has been a very collective kind of process… right from the very beginning,” she says.

Angelique’s Isle Survival on Isle Royale

Angelique’s Isle was quick to attract attention. It won Best Screenplay

By Emma Christensen


ngelique’s Isle, a feature-length film under production in Northwestern Ontario, tells the extraordinary survival story of a young woman. For screenwriter and producer Michelle Derosier, it’s a tale that parallels the struggles and perseverance of Indigenous women today. In 1845, Angelique Mott was only 17 when she and her voyageur husband were abandoned on Isle Royale by copper hunters. During the harsh winter that followed—one that claimed the life of her husband—Angelique relied on her traditional Indigenous knowledge to survive. The film is based on author

Those conversations about Angelique’s story were the first of many. Derosier continued to discuss the idea, first with Amos Adetuyi and Floyd Cane of Circle Blue Films— who agreed to co-produce Angelique’s Isle—and then with French-Canadian director Marie-Hélène Cousineau and Mexican cinematographer Celiana Cárdenas. Culturally diverse, talented women are present at all levels of the production of Angelique’s Isle, something that Derosier notes with pride. For her, this represents a shift in the climate of the Canadian film industry, toward a reality where women and Indigenous people tell their own stories. “In the last 100 years of cinema it has not been that way. In today’s film community that’s really being challenged,” says Derosier.

James R. Stevens’ novella, Angelique Abandoned. Originally from Migisi Sahgaigan First Nation, Derosier is an award-winning filmmaker and the president of Thunderstone Pictures. Angelique’s Isle differs somewhat from Derosier’s previous work. She considers herself to be a community activist at heart and focuses much of her energy on producing thought-provoking documentaries such as Walk a Mile and Return to Manomin.

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More information about Angelique’s Isle can be found at


2nd place winner MONSTER HEADPHONES


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What continues to resonate for Derosier, motivating her through long days of hard work, is the strength of Angelique herself. “One of the things I couldn’t let go of years ago was how powerful this woman was, and how resilient and strong this woman was. Most of us in modern day cannot imagine what our ancestors had to live through.”


Derosier recalls discussing the story many years ago with Stevens and Thunderstone Pictures vice-president

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at the 2015 Northern Ontario Music and Film awards, and was one of three films selected to receive CBC Breaking Barriers funding. This financial assistance, along with support from Telefilm Canada, made the production possible. Winter filming for Angelique’s Isle concluded in March, and the summer session will resume in Terrace Bay and at Fort William Historical Park in May. Although a release date for the film has yet to be finalized, Derosier emphasizes her team’s excitement about seeing the film through to its final stages of production.

Make a 30 second to 1 minute video from one of the resources from the Draw the line campaign and tell us what it means to you. For more information and contest rules visit our Facebook page: TLL / DTL TBay 2017 Deadline submission: Monday, May 28th 2017 by 12 am

Draw the line campaign ressources available at: Sexual Abuse Centre Thunder Bay at 385 Mooney Ave Centr’Elles at 234 Van Norman Street All Thunder Bay Public Libraries Downloadable at

Funding for this program is provided by the Government of Ontario and the Local Health Intergration Network


The Farndale Murder Mystery

Cambrian Players Close Season with Comedic Play within a Play By Olivia Levesque (L-R) Jennifer Jones, Alex Jecchinis, Ruth Currie, Lauren Payette, and Mari Lukkaroinen


ambrian Players wraps up their season with yet another hilarious, knee-slapping performance. The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery, a comedy written by Walter Zerlin Jr. and David McGillivray, tells the story of a collective of women who toil tirelessly to whip up amateur theatrical productions with side-splitting results. The play-within-a-play is filled with unwieldy disaster, which is sure to keep the audience on the edge of their seat. The play is Beverley Gravelle-MacLeod’s fifth time

directing and producing a show with Cambrian, and with the show being the season closer she wanted to give the performers the opportunity to have fun, make fun of themselves a bit, and provide an entertaining night out for the audience. Gravelle-MacLeod describes the first read-through with the Cambrian Board of Directors as a hilarious experience. “We were laughing so hard, we were absolutely grasping our sides,” she says. With the plot of the show being a play within a play, it gives the group the opportunity to poke fun at small

community theatre groups— something that Thunder Bay is more than familiar with. “It was one of those plays we were just dying to do because it was so funny, and every time something came up, as a community theatre group we could relate to it, and it was that reliability of it that we loved so much,” she says. With the absurdity of it all, Gravelle-MacLeod warns the audience that they can expect to be surprised. The small cast of five is made up of many familiar local faces, including Cambrian vets Ruth Currie, Alex Jecchinis, Mari Lukkaroinen, and Lauren

Payette. As well, Jennifer Jones makes her debut with Cambrian, though she is well known for the work she's done with other community theatre groups such as Redwood Park Church and 10x10. Gravelle-MacLeod ensures that the craziness that takes place on stage mirrors the organized chaos that has to happens backstage as well. Stage manager Nathalie Roy has been working tirelessly in her usual dedicated approach to maintain the vision of the play. This play is special for both of them as they’ve worked together on every play directed by

Finlandia Hall May 17-20 and 24-27

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With the booming success of the latest production of The Full Monty, Cambrian Players have decided to change their general admission ticket structure to ensure that everyone has a chance to make it to the show, because you’re not going to want to miss this.

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The Second Most Pleasurable Thing We Do In The Dark: A Column About Movies

Moms on Screen By Michael Sobota


ovies featuring mothers as their central focus are almost as plentiful as movies featuring love... or hate. Screenwriters have written “I hate you!” to be spoken by children to their moms almost as frequently as they have written “I love you.” Here are five examples that put moms at the centre of the picture.

Get away from her, you bitch! - Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) to the Alien Queen who is threatening her adopted space daughter in Aliens

Mommy Dearest (1981) Director Frank Perry thought he was making a serious drama about the movie star Joan Crawford, based on a book of the same name by Crawford’s daughter, Christina. When critics excoriated the film, the studio re-released it, successfully, with a campy marketing campaign. Joan Crawford’s life—at least seen through the eyes of her daughter—is exactly the stuff of melodramatic movie-making. Faye Dunaway, in a career wrecking performance, is so over the top she becomes riveting, our eyes glued to every gesture and explosion she makes. With a terrific supporting cast—all of whom take every bit of this seriously— the movie is a trash classic.


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Aliens (1986) James Cameron picks up Ridley Scott’s franchise and pushes it forward 57 years into the future. Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) is rescued from a drifting space capsule in which she has been asleep for those six decades. While asleep in space, her daughter grows up and dies on earth. Now, Ripley finds herself going back to the strange planet where she encountered the original creatures in Alien. The creatures have colonized the place, using eggs from their queen. In a climactic third act battle (Cameron’s third acts are always a climatic battle), Ripley fights to protect Newt (Carrie Henn), an isolated child who she adopts as her in-space daughter. It becomes, literally, a battle of the moms. In this film Cameron was already demonstrating his mastery of new film technologies, making the story both spectacular and believable.

The Kids Are Alright (2010) Lisa Cholodenko directs from a script she co-wrote with Stuart Blumberg. Joni (Mia Wasikowska) and Laser (Josh Hutcherson) have two moms—Jules (Julianne Moore) and Nic (Annette Bening). Complications arise when the kids want to know who their dad is, as their moms have kept this information a secret. When the dad (Mark Ruffalo) arrives, the heat rises and all the internal family relationships are tested. The script and performances are richly layered with generous dollops of pathos and humour. The family has both integrity and believability.

Mommy (2014)

Julieta (2016)

Xavier Dolan has mined mother/son relationships in four of his six feature films. Working from his own original script, he creates a gut-wrenching, heart-opening examination of a mother’s love. Diane (Anne Dorval—Dolan cast her as his own mom in his first feature, I Killed My Mother) struggles to raise her hyperactive teenage son Steve (Antoine-Olivier Pilon) in an intense, emotionally exhausting performance. The film won the Jury Prize at Cannes and six Canadian Screen Awards.

Pedro Almodóvar adapts three Alice Munro stories to bring us this sun-drenched, relocated Spanish tale about a mother and her estranged daughter. Late in life, Julieta (Emma Suárez) decides to search for her daughter Anita (Adriana Ugarte), who abandoned her mother when she was eighteen. In that search, she discovers how much uncertainty there is in life, and how a mother’s love can survive despite that uncertainty. Julieta is a beautiful, quiet, yet exotic film that reaches across generations to rekindle love.

And here are five more movie celebrations of mothers: Sophie’s Choice (1982), Terms of Endearment (1983), Places In The Heart (1984), Serial Mom (1994), and I Killed My Mother (2009).


The Stairs

Documentary Challenges Stereotypes About Drug Use and Addictions By Tonya Muchano


s part of Mental Health Awareness Week and to mark International Harm Reduction Day, Elevate NWO and the Thunder Bay Drug Strategy are hosting a free screening of the award-winning Canadian documentary The Stairs. Directed by Hugh Gibson and produced by Midnight Lamp Films, The Stairs is a turbulent story of resilience that follows three Toronto social workers over half a decade. Marty, Greg, and Roxanne live and work in Toronto’s Regent Park neighbourhood, where they have lived and survived decades of street life. A mother, grandfather, poet are profiled in the film. Each are funny, articulate, surprising—and habitual drug users. Performing outreach in their community—trying to give back— they struggle with their tenuous lifestyles and past choices. With incredible access, this character- driven film follows each person from 2011, creating intimate portraits that challenge preconceptions. In his director’s statement, Gibson explains that “in a large community of under-serviced individuals, many yearn for expressive outlets. Together we saw this film as a way of capturing the honesty of

their experiences; revealing their perspectives. I wanted to see, understand, and feel stories that don’t get reported.” The film was an official selection of the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival and won the Toronto Film Critics Association Award for best Canadian film of 2016. The free screening takes place on May 3 at 7 pm at the Victoria Inn, and is part of Elevate NWO’s annual Opening Doors HIV/AIDS Counselling Conference, which this year focuses on injection drug use. One of the goals of the screening is to raise funds for Shelter House’s peer engagement programming and filmgoers are encouraged to donate if they are able. Although the event is free, registration is required. Visit to register or contact 345-1516 ext. 246 for info. For more information about The Stairs, visit

Victoria Inn May 3 at 7 pm Call 345-1516 ext. 246 to register

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Inspired by Nature Interdisciplinary Artist Blake Evans By Sarah Kerton


lake Evans is passionately explaining to me the ideas behind his art. We are in the sunny window of Espresso Joya, and I am meeting him for the first time. I am struck by his clear eyes and his direct and open way of communicating. Growing up along the shore of Lake Huron in Bayfield, Ontario, Evans was raised with a love of nature, gardening, and being outside. “I came to Thunder Bay to attend the Indigenous learning program at Lakehead University, and quickly fell in love with Indigenous art styles and using natural materials for art,” says Evans. As his interest grew, he transferred into the fine arts program so that he could explore his interest on a larger scale. Just finishing his third year, he has been moving towards drawing with threads and textiles as well as repurposing natural materials and recycled materials in his art. Having just won an award for his piece entitled Blue is Great at LU’s Annual Major Studio Exhibition at the Thunder Bay Art Gallery, this coming year he is hoping to focus on drawing


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and sculpture to connect all of his skills into multimedia pieces. Blue is Great was created with recycled jean material with the image of the Great Lakes embroidered on the back. This piece was made in response to the US president’s decision to end protective laws surrounding fresh water. “The great blue heron to me is a powerful bird that I would always see in the waterways near my home,” he says. Evans’ interest in politics and social justice have led him to using his art to reflect the realities he sees and learns about. This past year he went to Standing Rock to try to understand political movements at the site. He is very observant, and likes to see how people react to art, which leads him to wanting his art to start conversations and inspire people to talk. Evans is a youth liaison community member for Neechee Studio and led a workshop in April making porcupine quill bracelets. Connect with him on Facebook for more information about his work or follow him on Instagram at @naturalworks3.

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Ski Ninjas Volume 1 Comic Strip Published in Collection By Adrian Lysenko

S Dress your best for all those upcoming occasions..... J. B. EVANS, FASHIONS & FOOTWEAR is bursting with new styles and accessories.


ki Ninjas has come a long way since Kyle Lees started the comic strip 10 years ago. The illustrator, cartoonist, and writer first featured Ski Ninjas in Lakehead University’s studentrun newspaper The Argus. “It literally started as stick figures,” Lees says. “In terms of art, it also became more consistent, though I wasn't afraid to try new techniques when I thought they would work in a comic.” Lees has recently published Ski Ninjas Volume 1: This is Free on the Internet, a collection of the comic strip. For anyone who hasn’t read it, he describes Ski Ninjas as a gag-a-day strip, with no continuity, and little to no recurring characters. “You get your joke and you get out in three panels,” he says. “Not that there aren't recurring themes: depression, coffee shops, social absurdities, and more.” Even though he started Ski Ninjas in 2007, Lees decided to include strips only dating back to 2012, the same year that Maclean’s Magazine named it one of Canada’s top five university comics. “Everything pre-2012 kind of isn't that great. My original plan was to eventually put out a ‘Volume 0,’ but I was

looking through them the other day, and, really, other than a few, it's not my finest work,” he says. “Ski Ninjas developed as my artistic and writing has, because with a strip without any characters like that, the central character is kind of just my personality.” Lees’ words of encouragement for any artists hoping to start their own comic is that the only way to get better at something is by doing it. “Start a Tumblr, post them on Instagram, annoy your friends and family with your comics,” he says. “Put them where everyone can see them. You might suck at making anything at first, but if you love the act of creating, then you keep going, and eventually you learn to suck less.” Ski Ninjas Volume 1: This is Free on the Internet is available for order at, and can also be picked up at New Day Records & Accessories, Comix Plus Music Exchange, and Hill City Comics. People can also get the book upstairs at the Thunder Bay Country Market. Lees will also be having a joint book launch with fellow Thunder Bay artist Merk for his graphic novel Season of the Dead Hours at Definitely Superior Art Gallery on May 26.

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theArts between freedom and place, and between dreaming and staying woke.” On Saturday at In Common there will be a screening of a series of short films that cover diverse issues across multiple disabilities. The festival concludes with a concert by Duluth violinist and songwriter Gaelynn Lea, whose unique blend of traditional and modern techniques—including a looping pedal—produces layered, symphonic soundscapes that support her haunting lyrics. Lea was born with osteogenesis

Tangled Arts + Disability

Third Annual Tangled on Tour By Tonya Muchano


angled Arts + Disability’s touring show Tangled on Tour is back this month for their third annual exhibition, running May 5 and 6 at the Thunder Bay Art Gallery and In Common resto-bar. The festival showcases local and international professional artists with disabilities. Organizer Zoe Gordon explains that “Tangled on Tour is a celebration of film, visual arts, and performing arts by professional artists with disabilities. It is about recognizing the excellence that exists among artists with disabilities, celebrating diversity, and understanding barriers.” It’s also about making art truly accessible for all spectators. For example, Gordon notes that all events are free, and there will be audio captioning of films, captioning of the musical performance, barrier-free locations, and attendants to assist people as needed. The tour is part of a three-year project spearheaded by Tangled Arts + Disability, a Toronto-based, artist-run organization that is dedicated to the advancement of artists with disabilities, and to increasing


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access to arts and culture for all. This is the third and final year of the tour, which also collaborates to host shows in London, Ottawa, and Peterborough. Organizers here in Thunder Bay are hoping they will be able to continue the event here independently. Over the past few years Gordon says they have “developed cool collaborations between service providers, arts organizations, and partners in the community.” She explains that what’s needed now is more local leadership in order to maintain the momentum and carry the event into the future. The exhibition begins on Friday May 5 with an art opening at the Thunder Bay Art Gallery. The opening includes Toronto-based artist melannie g campbell’s show Point of Origin, which is part of Tangled Arts’ 2016-2017 gallery season. The show is a collection of mixed media works that examine “dynamic embodied relationships—those between trauma and fibromyalgia, between capitalism and ableism, between legacy and wisdom, between Blackness and life,

imperfecta, or brittle bone disease, and is also an active advocate and public speaker for disability awareness. This will be Lea’s first show in Canada since she began playing violin 23 years ago, and her first time back to Thunder Bay since she was a child. “[Tangled on Tour] is a neat concept, I’m excited to meet the people involved,” explains Lea. “Most of my shows are in regular clubs so I’m excited to do something with a direct connection to the disability arts community, and meeting new people who care about the same things.”


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Live Bands Wednesday Jazzy Every Folkin Karaoke 10pm-2am Night Thursday and DJ Big D Monday Showcase 7-10 7pm-10pm Open Stage 10pm-2am 242 Red River Road


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A Homegrown Tale of Sorcerers and Secrecy Chris “Merk” Merkley Publishes Third Graphic Novel By Karl Oczkowski


omic books and graphic novels are making a comeback. From a constant stream of superhero movies to graphic novels exploring magical and futuristic worlds, today’s storytellers are working to satiate a strong public appetite for the fantastical and imaginative using both literary and visual techniques. In Thunder Bay, this appetite is being managed thanks to writers and artists like Chris “Merk” Merkley, who has just released his third graphic novel, Season of the Dead Hours. Telling the story of a young boy named Fionn who encounters a sorcerer banished hundreds of years ago, Season of the Dead Hours is entirely written and illustrated by Merk, and keeps the reader guessing as Fionn embarks on a perilous journey across the Irish countryside in search of


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the truth behind an ancient sect of magical Druids.

novel and various related merchandise and art prints.

“The book deals with Celtic mythology,” says Merk, who was able to independently publish the book thanks to a successful crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo that wrapped up in December 2016. “I’ve always loved history and mythology, and this story intentionally and loosely plays with those themes to tell the story of a boy whose eyes are opened to the world of magic.”

“I’ve said this before, but Thunder Bay is crazy good for artists like myself, because everyone is helping each other out,” says Merk. “I’ve lived all over the country, and the artistic communities in other cities can be much more exclusive and competitive. In Thunder Bay, it’s an entirely different story.”

As part of his choice to independently publish the book, Merk had to employ word of mouth and social media to garner the support necessary to get Season of the Dead Hours to print. Fortunately, people from across Thunder Bay and beyond rose to the challenge, with Merk raising enough money to publish the book and deliver to all his supporters through copies of the

Season of the Dead Hours is available at Merk’s website and is also available in the local comic shops Hill City Comics and Comixplus. An official book launch is also scheduled for May 26 at Definitely Superior Art Gallery as part of a dual book launch for Season of the Dead Hours and Ski Ninjas Volume 1: This is Free on the Internet by Kyle Lees, another local Thunder Bay artist.


From Thunder Bay Art Gallery’s Collection

The Conversation By Nadia Kurd, Curator, Thunder Bay Art Gallery







Title: The Conversation (2002) Artist: Christi Belcourt Medium: Acrylic on Canvas


JOANNE SMITH Superior Realty


Size: 137 x 137 cm


urchased with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts Acquisition Assistance Program and the Friends of Yvonne McRae, in her memory.

Painted in homage to her late friend and mentor Yvonne McRae, Christi Belcourt’s The Conversation draws inspiration from the floral beadwork designs by Métis women from the early 1800s. Belcourt describes her painting practice as one that “has now developed to where entire floral patterns are created in ‘dots’ by dipping the end of a paintbrush or knitting needle into the paint and pressing it onto canvas.”

More than a simple replication of nineteenth century beadwork designs, Belcourt’s painting depicts the living world of plant medicines that make up the interrelated ecosystems found in both the natural and urban environment. Amidst the many flower blossoms, tendrils, and root systems depicted in her work, wildlife is shown living in tandem with the sacred and healing plants such as blueberries, tobacco, and sweetgrass commonly found across Turtle Island (North America). Ultimately the painting expresses Belcourt’s admiration for her late friend. She writes, “Yvonne was the kind of woman who when you were in her presence you felt instantly at ease. She had a way of bringing out the best in you. Everyone who knew her would enjoy the most wonderful and interesting conversations with her during visits that would last for hours and hours.” The Walleye




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Sailing the Big Lake

The Thunder Bay Yacht Club Story by Kat Lyzun, Photo by Izabela Pioro Photography


or longtime sailor Bob Vander Ploeg, there is a moment—the “oh wow” moment—when you turn off the motor and feel the boat moving under your control, responding to the wind. You feel the boat accelerate, surrounded by the sound of wind and waves. You look toward the harbour and it feels as though you’ve stepped

through the looking glass, seeing the city from an entirely different perspective. Thunder Bay is blessed with one of the best sailing environments in the world, as long as you don’t mind cooler weather: fresh water, mild commercial traffic, no tides, and hundreds of miles of pristine wilderness shoreline. “The best part is, if you think you want to get out there [and experience this], you can,” says Vander Ploeg, who is also fleet captain for the Thunder Bay Yacht Club. The club offers great opportunities to experience the sport of sail racing; you don’t even need a boat. No experience? No problem. At a minimum, just show up at the marina at Prince Arthur’s Landing with enthusiasm, warm clothes and (preferably) white-soled running shoes. If you like to plan ahead, join the Thunder Bay Yacht Club Crew Bench page on Facebook to see who’s looking for crew and to share your interest, experience and availability for races. Vander Ploeg says one of the best ways to start is to sign up for the club’s four-day New Crew Program, which includes classroom instruction and on-the-water training.

The more informal pursuit races are held Monday and Friday evenings. It’s less competitive, and you’re out on the water for about one to two hours—perfect for beginners. Another great option for new crew is a weekend race. You spend more time on the water, so more time learning. Once you have a few races under your belt, you may want to try the buoy racing series on Wednesday nights. Boats are competing to win, so get ready to flex those skills and expect more spirited instructions from your skipper. And don’t be shy to come out—sailors are friendly folk. “Sailors are very generous and love to share their passion for the sport,” Vander Ploeg says. “Newcomers can expect to be welcomed and assigned a task appropriate to their experience and ability.” “You might get wet, cold, hot, sunburned, and thirsty all in the same race, but you will definitely have fun! “ Race season starts at the end of May through the second week in October. For more information on crew training and schedules, visit

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Breaking Down Racial Barriers Racialized Young Professionals Network By Pat Forrest communities. Their slogan is “Breaking Down Racial Barriers.” Ansari acknowledges that the word “racialized” can be a charged term, one that can conjure up some strong emotions. “We wanted to call it what it is,” he says. “If you are faced with barriers and preconceived ideas based on what you look like, then you are racialized. For many of us, it’s our living reality.” The network also welcomes anyone who feels they can bring something to the table as an ally. They offer keynote speakers and seminars related to social justice, anti-oppression training, and even unofficial translation services. One of the organization’s founders, Farhan Yousaf, was recently awarded the City of Thunder Bay’s annual respect. Award, (L-R) Farhan Yousaf, Farah Ahmad, and Joy Wakefield


hen Lakehead University law student Ayoub Ansari would venture off campus into the community, he often found himself out of his comfort zone. “It felt that I was living in two distinct worlds: a university campus that was diverse and overall quite welcoming within a community that, while also quite diverse, often made me feel judged or treated differently based on my ethnicity,” he says. “I quickly realized that if I was feeling uncomfortable interacting in the community, others who had


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moved here from other countries were likely experiencing the same feelings.” Driven by the desire to better merge these two “distinct worlds,” Ansari and some colleagues formed the Racialized Young Professionals Network, a networking community for persons identifying as racialized and their allies. The network also works to showcase the positive impact that racialized individuals are making on the mainstream community as well as to engage, educate, and empower people to break down racial barriers and create equity within their

which recognizes an individual, business, or organization that promotes attitudes, beliefs, and behaviours that recognize the importance of human dignity, and demonstrates leadership to foster respect for others. The best may still be to come, says Farah Ahmed, advocacy coordinator for the network. “I feel like we are just getting started and there is so much more to do,” she says. “We want to keep reaching out, showcasing so many accomplished racialized people and empowering our community. Our message is, listen up and wake up.” For more information on the Racialized Young Professionals Network, email or follow them on Facebook.


Diane Petryna in the midst of renovations at "Take 2 Boutique"

Take Two for Take a Hike

Diane Petryna’s Retail Makeover Story by Michelle McChristie, Photo by Dave Koski

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ophisticated, but grounded.” That’s how Diane Petryna describes her future customers. This month, she will re-open her Bay Street business, formerly known as Take a Hike, as Take 2 Boutique. It’s more than a simple rebranding—it’s a business makeover and the result of over 20 years of experience and reflection on the retail biz. The new store is Petryna’s chance to “press the reset button” and help simplify her customers’ lives by offering a simpler retail experience. Petryna’s vision for Take 2 Boutique is rooted her personal philosophy. “I’ve always been a bit of a minimalist and with people looking for ways to simplify their lives there seems to be a growing movement towards owning fewer things,” she says. She insists that buying quality products doesn’t necessarily mean spending more because, in the end, you buy fewer things, because each item lasts longer— “you do less harm to the environment and often save money.” Take 2 Boutique will focus on high quality and functional women’s clothing (as well as some men’s clothing), jewelry, and accessories. But it’s not just about the products—it’s about the experience, which she doesn’t describe as “shopping.” She paints a picture of a casual conversation/consultation in which staff take

the time to get to know a woman’s style and comfort zone and help guide her decisions. “Let’s face it—we’ve got more complicated things to worry about than our clothes,” says Petryna, adding that she wants her customers to “surround themselves in things they use and things they love,” and make wise purchases “that complement their natural beauty and unique lifestyle.” In the mid-1990s, Petryna was inspired to open Take a Hike after reading an article of the same name in a women’s business magazine about the outdoor industry’s failure to recognize the needs of women. It was a venture that she says evolved with the changes in the outdoor and retail industries, including the shift towards online shopping, and was one she is incredibly proud of. But Petryna is not looking back nor slowing down. “In a few months, I’m turning 59—I always said that I’d never retire. I’m passionate about retail and not afraid to do things differently.” In a way, Petryna is taking a step back to take two forward.

Take 2 Boutique 309 Bay Street 474-4220

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in the bottom half of your emergency blanket, and wrap it tightly around you. Also fold it over your head and stick your face out. Make sure there are no openings except for your face to keep all the warm air in. When you go in the woods, always bring a whistle and an emergency blanket. You should also bring food and water. Sometimes searchers use dogs to pick up scents, so if you hear a dog barking, or people calling, blow your whistle. The “help me” call is the blow of your whistle three times, then stop, then three times again, then stop, again and again.

in the wind. I think I might need a larger size. It is hard to hold onto the lower parts when you are trying to get the top part over your head. I enjoyed learning how to stay safe in the woods. I hope now that you will also know how to stay safe. You can contact Lakehead Search and Rescue to book the Hug a Tree training.

The last thing we did was go out and actually try these things in the forest. I found a good tree that wasn’t too tall because if there is lightning it might hit your tree. Then I built a nest. I found out that you have to make the nest much thicker than you think because when you sit on it, it crushes down. I also made signals out of sticks, but my dog likes to chew sticks and dragged them away. When I tried to wrap myself up in the emergency blanket, it was hard to keep it around me because it kept on flying open

Hug A Tree

Lakehead Search and Rescue’s Steps to Staying Safe in the Woods By Kate Haering (age 9 )


hat could be a worse feeling than getting lost? The answer is nothing! But if you know what to do, it might not be as scary. Raija Tilus is a volunteer for Lakehead Search and Rescue, and she told me how to stay safe and help searchers find me if I do ever get lost. The first thing we did was look at what Tilus had in her pack. She had a GPS, food, a compass, a radio, and a mini first aid kit. Inside the mini kit was a small candle, a flint to light a fire, dental floss to use for tying, matches, bandages, and water purification tablets. Also in her pack were socks, long underwear, and a triangular bandage. She also


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wears a whistle, which is used to get the attention of searchers if she becomes lost. Next, we watched a video about a kid that gets lost and found by the search and rescue people. Tilus says that if you get lost, don’t panic. Find a tree that will protect you from the weather and stay put. It is very important to stay in one place because it makes it easier for the searchers to find you. To stay dry, build a “nest.” To do this you gather sticks and twigs and also stuff to stay comfy such as grass, moss, and Balsam branches. After you build your nest, make big signals like “SOS” or an arrow on the ground in an open space nearby, to signal searchers in the sky. Then, you sit cross legged

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Richard Togman

Rent Panda

New Community Member Guides You Home By Sarah Kerton


f you’ve ever tried to rent a house or apartment locally, you’ll know it can be a frustrating experience. When Richard Togman moved here in 2016 to be with his partner, he was shocked at the lack of a reliable, centralized system. He saw a need for something to fill this gap, and Rent Panda was born. With a PhD in political science and connections to people with programming and marketing skills, Togman has worked to create a new easy-to-use and visually appealing online platform that makes it simple for landlords to find tenants and for tenants to discover the perfect place to call home. The goal is that the website will eventually be the go-to when you are looking for a place to rent, housing Thunder Bay’s most comprehensive listings. “Our easy-to-use website gives you the personal touch of finding exactly what you need when you need it,”

Togman says. “As well, using our unique review system you can find high quality landlords while browsing professional photographs and videos taken by our staff of the available properties Thunder Bay has to offer.” Rent Panda staff take professional photos of your property for free with every listing. “Quality is extremely important to me so we do all the photography and 360° videos so you can trust that what you see is what you get,” says Togman. They also offer personalized services for a fee, such as 360° video tours and the ability to customize promotional ads. Landlords and property managers can list their vacant units for free on the site, and can even upload properties into their profile ahead of time so they can easily be listed when the time comes. Advertise your unit, or find your home at The Walleye


CityScene Margaret Phillips Awards, and a performance of the winner of the People’s Choice from the 10x10 Play Showcase. Writers from Thunder Bay and the region will also have the opportunity to display their work, making it a special night for writers and attendees alike. The Literary Awards Party is the culmination of a weekend of events put on by NOWW that feature Chong, who was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2013. The weekend will also feature a public reading by Chong entitled “The Girl in the Picture: The Making of a Book” at the Baggage Building Arts Centre, in which she will explore her process in writing the book. The author will also be facilitating a master class for writers on the morning of May 13.

Denise Chong

NOWW Literary Awards Party

For those unfamiliar with NOWW, the organization was founded in 1997 and has grown into the largest literary organization in Northwestern Ontario, supporting writers through a range of programs and activities. “Opportunities include writing workshops, readings,

an annual writing contest, literary awards party, newsletters, a literary magazine, mentorship, networking opportunities, and social events,” says Brandon Walker, NOWW spokesperson. “NOWW’s activities offer writers the opportunity to develop their artistic skills, receive professional feedback, network with each other, present their work to the public through both oral and print media, and have their writing recognized and appreciated.” “Groups like NOWW do a great service in bringing writers together to share ideas about bringing one's work to the page and to the public,” Chong says. “Doing so affirms what art is. It's about both taking risks and believing in one's work. You give yourself permission to relish in the solitariness of the act of writing—even in the silence, when no words are spilling out. Even in those stretches—and there are many!—you're still being a writer.” More information can be found at

Celebrating Literary Excellence in NWO By Leah Ching


he Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop (NOWW) is gearing up to host their annual celebration of Northwestern Ontario literary excellence on Saturday May 13. The evening is an annual celebration of writing and literature in Northwestern Ontario and will include dinner at the Prince

Painted Turtle Ar

There will also be an awards ceremony, including presentation of the winning entries to the NOWW writing contest, along with presentation of the Kouhi and


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A Boy from the Woods

Micah Pawluk Releases Debut Poetry Collection By Kirsti Salmi Poetry is a recent feather in Pawluk’s well-adorned cap. Hailing from Dorion, Pawluk is a Renaissance man: an accomplished pianist and photographer, he’s also an avid outdoorsman passionate about hiking and free-climbing. Pawluk brings passion and discipline to each pursuit, allowing them to intersect in the spirit of creative exploration. “I love seeing things nobody’s seen before, pushing myself to go further than other people are willing to go. I work on photography while hiking, and there’s a natural element to my writing.”


or Micah Pawluk, the best part of poetry is what the reader brings to the page. “The work is about whatever people take away from it,” says Pawluk about his debut poetry collection, A Boy from the Woods. “Everybody will interpret it in different ways. Writing poetry was a way for me to process experience. If it helps somebody else do the same—if they can say hey, I may never meet this person, but they understand how I’m feeling—that’s amazing.” A Boy from the Woods is a self-published collection, organized into seven sections that reflect the progression of Pawluk’s life. He explores his rural upbringing, transitioning to city life, becoming an artist, and going through life-changing events. The poems were written over three to five years, coinciding with Pawluk’s music studies at Lakehead University and subsequent international travel. Pawluk says that assembling the collection was much like composing music. “I had a vision for it with structure and narrative,” he says. “I spent a lot of time figuring out the order of the poems, and coordinating themes.”

Though performance and publication seem separate realms, Pawluk says music helped him gain a lot of confidence in his writing. As an artist and self-described perfectionist, he’s learned to be fearless, leaving doubt at the door. “Just like music, writing takes lots of time to practice, prepare, and edit, but you never quite know how people will receive it. I get a lot of good feedback, but not everybody’s going to like my work. I try to distance myself from critique and just do what comes honestly. I put forth my best effort, and I’m proud of the result.” Pawluk’s next writing project is a travel memoir about a solo hiking trip he took in Scotland. The experience was dangerous, but life-changing. It’s mentioned briefly in A Boy from the Woods, but it will take a full-length project to unpack the effect it’s had on his perspective. “I kept a journal, and took hundreds of pictures,” he says. “It’s going to be an intense process to relive it all.” Micah Pawluk’s A Boy from the Woods can be purchased at Chapters, or online at,, as well as Pawluk will also be selling copies at local craft fairs. To keep up with Micah’s work on social media, look up Micah Pawluk - Pianist or Micah Pawluk Photography on Facebook.

The Walleye



Stuff We Like For the Camp By Amy Jones


p here in NWO, we pack a lot of summer into our summer. And if you have a camp (or know someone who does), chances are you’re counting the days until that sweet, sweet camp season kicks off. We here at The Walleye totally feel you, and we want to help make this the best year ever. Here is Stuff We Like for the Camp.

Battery Powered Chainsaw Northern Turf 815 Simpson Street Nothing says “camp” like waking up in the morning to the sweet sound of a chainsaw. Make sure the lumberjack (or jill) in your life has the power to keep those branches coming down with this battery powered chainsaw from Northern Turf.

Starting at $399

Fillet Knife Beebe Knives If you’re going to be doing any fishing at camp (and honestly, if you’re not, why not?) you’re going to need a fillet knife to prepare that fish for eating. Paul Beebe has been making his handcrafted knives un Upsala since 1984—long enough to know exactly the kind of quality fishing folk in the region expect.


Thunder Bay Dinner Jacket

Summit Board Game

Any Secondhand Store No camp would be complete without a few TBDJs to throw on when company comes for dinner—and by “dinner,” we mean a case of Crystal and a couple of burgers around the fire, of course. Complete the look with a pair of Nipigon Nylons (if you think the fashion world can handle it).

Inside Up Games This summer while you’re at camp, put away your tablets and your cell phones and spend some real quality time with your family and friends over a board game. And local game designer Conor McGoey’s Summit board game, the result of an ubersuccessful Kickstarter campaign last year, is the perfect game to get everyone to the table.

$not more than a coupla bucks, come on now, we’re not fancy


Pine Sauna Bucket

Adirondack Chair


Paddy O Boards

290 Bay Street We’re willing to bet that for most of you, “camp” and “sauna” go hand in hand. Deck out your sauna for your camp guests (or for you—come on, treat yo’ self!) with this pine sauna bucket from the sauna masters at Finnport. Imagine this: it’s a balmy evening in mid-July. You’ve just spent the day out on the lake with the kids and now you’re settling back with a beer on your dock watching the sunset in your gorgeous cedar Adirondack chair from Paddy O Boards. Need we say more? Didn’t think so.



Yeti 400 Battery Pack Goal Zero You may not want to (or be able to!) rely on the grid for power while at camp. But you may need to keep things running. Easy to pack and ready to keep you powered up with over 400Wh, the Yeti 400 battery pack from Goal Zero is perfect for short weekend trips and charges up on-the-go from Goal Zero Solar Panels.


Revenge Outdoor Spray Orysi Thunder Bay Country Market While we love camp season, we could do without the bugs. This all-natural bug spray, aptly called Revenge, is made with lemongrass, eucalyptus, peppermint, and citronella to keep the bugs at bay while you’re sitting by the bay.



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Face Cord Birch Firewood Dog Lake Firewood 3079 Dog Lake Road Fires and camps go hand in hand. And for that, you’re going to need some firewood. Dog Lake Firewood on Dog Lake Road is a reliable source for birch cords, and they will even deliver if that’s your thing.



Market Vendor


he Sapling, a branch of Pinetree Catering, is the latest addition to the stalls of the Thunder Bay Country Market. They offer fresh-baked, artisanal breads and spreads. Megan Paxton, a Red Seal Chef with extensive training and a passion for baking, is leading Pinetree’s latest venture. The Sapling bakes seven types of authentic, handmade, small batch, simple breads. They offer French baguettes, focaccia, and two types of bread made with Brule Creek flour (rye caraway and honey oat), to name a few. Artisanal bread is given a longer fermentation process, which leads to a more delicious bread, and they are pretty neat looking too.

The Sapling Story and photo by Michelle Kolobutin

To complement their breads, they also sell a selection of house-made spreads, including roasted red pepper, feta hummus, sweet potato, roasted garlic, and spinach dip. With these breads and spreads, the Sapling is the perfect one-stop shop for your dinner party appetizer or picnic lunch. Their current selection of breads is just the beginning. Special orders can be made and they do sell out so go early for best selection. Check them out upstairs at market Saturdays and at Wednesday mini-markets.

Megan Paxton



Show your city some love and use #IChooseTbay to tell us why you choose Thunder Bay as your home.

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Style Edit

nautical-inspired habiliments, each one of these pieces—which can be worn interchangeably with one another—is perfectly suited for the camp-bound among us who would like to bring a touch of sartorial elegance to an otherwise laid-back seasonal affair.

What to Wear For a Long-Weekend Camp Getaway By Lyle Morissette

Bag Durable, practical, spacious, and with a nautical aesthetic that is timeless and fitting to the destination, this stylishly understated utilitarian canvas holdall can transport all your essentials then double-down as a picnic bag should the need/desire arise. Knitwear + Shirting Rain or shine, the key to holiday/camp dressing is to look like you belong and feel comfortable—characteristics admirably reflected in this lightweight knit cardigan and Breton-stripe t-shirt pairing. Playful yet refined, and capable of protective duty (when worn together against cold breezes) or simply rolling with any tide (the t-shirt alone), these nauticalinspired pieces mean business but are fashioned for pleasure. (Also consider: a linen band-collar button-up.)


hile some jet off to far-flung locales for the long weekend, there are those among us who simply prefer our (or our friends’) humble summer camps as our vacation sanctum sanctorum of choice.

You may have no specific agenda other than simply going to a camp on the lake, but that doesn’t mean you should let your appearance wilt just because you are away from prying eyes. I have put together an edited capsule wardrobe of quintessential (and

versatile) style essentials for those who crave a tastefully attired, fashionable long-weekend camp retreat without any added stress. From a pair of hybrid driving moc/boat shoes through all manner of Breton-striped and

Swim Shorts Assuming fun in the sun and sea (lake) is in the cards, these impeccably tailored, printed (turtle) swimming shorts are simply a must-have—comfortable and versatile whether worn in or out of the water.

Footwear Combining the aesthetics of the sleek driving moc with the practicality (sans the weight) of the classic boat shoe, the clean palette, sturdy sole, and lightweight slip-on structure of these shoes make for a versatile option that is as capable on deck as off. Wear with or without socks. (Alternative: white canvas plimsolls.) Trousers While I would personally advocate for ditching denim (preferring lightweight chinos or white linen trousers for the occasion), I’m well aware that many are married to their jeans. This pair, which is sleek yet sturdy (and available at JB Evans), should prove ever-capable for a multitude of eventualities, from comfortable lounging to taking on necessary camp chores. Nautical Accoutrements Don’t be afraid to experiment in a tastefully refined manner by swapping your typical city fare for a fine hat (perhaps a preppy straw boater), polarized sunnies, nautical bracelets, and a chronograph timepiece. And the rest... Lightweight chinos, pajama pants, rain jacket (waterproof bomber perhaps), knit polo shirt, underwear, as well as facial moisturizer with SPF.

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This is Thunder Bay

This month, The Walleye asked you what you’ll be doing for the May long weekend. Interviews by Nancy Saunders, Photos by Laura Paxton

Uriel - I may or may not be working. Either way, I’ll be hanging out with my cats and my girlfriend.

Hetty - Sleep. Sleeping. Maybe go out for a dinner or something, but sleep is the main thing. James: Agreed.

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Jeff - I will be traveling to London, Ontario, and visiting my sister and my niece and nephew. Seeing family, renewing old acquaintances, enjoying warm weather out of the bugs. The Walleye




New Apparel Company Reflects City’s Ties to the North By Andrea Stach Nathan Woods, owner and designer of Northies


here is no doubt that the over the past few years, Thunder Bay has seen a revival in community spirit. Civic pride is on an upswing and it is certainly an exciting time to live in Thunder Bay. All of this positive energy is also great fuel for local entrepreneurs to get some new ideas rolling that promote our city and all it has to offer. Nathan Woods, owner and designer of Northies, a new apparel company, has launched his line of t-shirts that do just that. Based on a concept he saw done by a Calgary company, Northies came out with their first t-shirt design this past fall. Wanting to create a modern style brand that reflects our city’s ties to the north and our natural and simple surroundings,

Northies’ inaugural t-shirt is 100% Canadian made from soft and durable ring-spun cotton and boldly states “YQT” (Thunder Bay’s airport code) in a strong, geometric design. The shirts are a unisex fit and are a contemporary twist on the traditional wardrobe staple.

is looking to expand his product line to include more items that reflect life in the north and he is hoping to collaborate even more with other local businesses. Wanting to be a positive force in the community, he has learned firsthand how local entrepreneurs can work together.

Originally from Hamilton, Woods has called Thunder Bay home for the past 13 years. He is a father of three young children and works full-time in the home renovation field. “If I am doing something creative, it keeps me happy,” he says.

Northies shirts make a fabulous addition to any closet and make a great gift for people near and far, especially for those family and friends who once called Thunder Bay home.

Northies has been lucky to have connected with James Nigro at mars clothing who has helped tremendously with the retail side of things. Woods says that he

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Trying to Catch the Spirit Self-Taught Photographer Releases New Book By Jon Nelson


oseph Marohnic has been taking photos for well over sixty years. In the introduction to his latest book Portraits From My Armchair he says, “you would think that after all that time a person would know all there is to know about a topic or enterprise and become tired of it, but that isn’t the case.” He then quotes jazz great Miles Davis, who said “Sometimes you have to play a long time to be able to play like yourself.” An 83-year-old self-taught photographer who is still learning how to photograph “like himself,” Marohnic has had 21 solo exhibits in Canada and Europe, been awarded Ontario Arts Council grants and has published three books, including one about Croatia, the country his parents emigrated from and that he has travelled to many times. In addition to his own photography, he has also taught photography and darkroom skills to many people in Atikokan. Marohnic now has medical problems and his lack of mobility limits his photography. He even stopped taking photos for a while, but missed it so much that his wife Gabrielle convinced him to start again. The photos in Portraits From My Armchair were primarily taken in his

Thunder Bay living room adjacent to a large window that provides soft, directional light that is ideal for portraits. A few of the portraits were taken outside and for those he substituted his wheelchair for the armchair. He asked friends, family, neighbours and people he encountered in his daily activities if they would like to be photographed. For privacy reasons, he doesn’t identify the people in the portraits but he does have a short quotation from a respected photographer to go with each portrait. The first one—“It is easy to make a picture of a stranger and call it a portrait. The difficulty lies in making a picture that makes a viewer care about a stranger”—best summarizes the strength of Marohnic’s photography. To accomplish this, his goal is to make a connection with the person. He wants the feeling to be like having coffee together but with a camera, rather than doughnuts, between them. Then he has a chance to catch the spirit of the person. Portraits From My Armchair is available at Chapters, Coles, Lakehead University, and Confederation College bookstores as well as at Bay Village Coffee.

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Shedding Light on Mental Health Out of the Darkness Memorial Walk Now in Seventh Year By Lindsay Campbell


hunder Bay residents will walk to reduce the stigma around mental health and suicide for another year. The seventh annual Out of the Darkness Memorial Walk, locally founded by Margaret Hajdinjak, will be held at Confederation College this month. Hajdinjak, who lost her son Steven in 2005, was inspired to create an event not only to bring individuals together in celebrating the lives of loved ones who have passed, but also to eliminate shame associated with mental illness.


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While the initiative will continue with its traditional format consisting of an opening ceremony, guest speakers, and performers preceded by a 3 km walk, there will be a few specific changes made to the programme. Confirmed guests this year consist of Rev. Hugh Walker, Peggy Adams of the Medicine Wheel Spirit Singers, who will be leading a smudging ceremony, and Steven Koptie, a therapist whose work is specialized with respect to First Nations communities. Kristina Belanger, a member of the marketing committee for Out of the Darkness, says in deciding this year’s line-up, it was important not only to have an expert on hand to talk about grief, but also to be more inclusive of Indigenous communities.

“I’ve been involved for three years and I’ve been trying to increase the attendance of First Nations people,” she says. “We know that the state of mental health has been a big problem in some of the communities.” Belanger recalls the event has attracted between 250-300 people in past years, but says the ultimate goal is not to increase numbers, but attract new faces. Having also experienced a loss of a family member to suicide, Belanger adds that there’s something unique about being with others beyond those who are immediate supports. “It’s just a really great way to feel like a sense of community of people who understand your loss,” she explains. “There’s something different about talking to people who are outside of your family and seeing how they’ve been able to move on … it’s really rewarding to just see how all of us are working together to try and help each other.” Out of the Darkness Memorial Walk will be held on May 7 from 4-6pm. Doors will open at 3:30 pm at Confederation College’s cafeteria. The event is free and no pre-registration is required.

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Seven Fallen Feathers New Book Takes Hard Look at Death of Indigenous Students By Stephanie Wesley


he book Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and Hard Truths in a Northern City, takes what the author Tanya Talaga calls a “hard look” at the circumstances surrounding the deaths of seven Indigenous students who passed away while attending school in Thunder Bay. Jethro Anderson, Jordan Wabasse, Kyle Morriseau, Curran Strang, Robyn Harper, Paul Panacheese, and Reggie Bushie passed away while attending high school in Thunder Bay away from their home communities, and were at the centre of an inquest that took place in the city. “It takes a look at them as people as well,” says Talaga, who has been a journalist with the Toronto Star for 20 years. She explains that it is often hard to get a sense of who the teens were from the inquest that took place on their deaths and in the stories written about them. “This book tells the story of what their lives were like, and also puts the context of what was happening within Indigenous relations in Canada,” Talaga says. “To me, the book is kind of a microcosm of what happened in Thunder Bay with these seven kids in the span of eleven years, and is sort of a microcosm of what’s been happening in Canada.” The book explores the failings that Canada has had for a long time with

Indigenous people, especially concerning education, Talaga says. She explains that there are many children who do not have a high school to attend up north, and that a high school education is “essentially the right of every other Canadian child regardless of what race, colour, or creed you are.” “These are children that we’ve been failing time and time again,” she says. Seven Fallen Feathers also delves into the history of Thunder Bay, and into the history of the Indian Residential School System. Part of her motivation to write the book was to teach as much as she could about what she’s learned about that system so that readers will understand what everyone went through in the northern Ontario communities.

does look at Thunder Bay’s history with Indigenous people, the good and the bad,” she explains. “I hope people read it, and have an open mind when they do. They can see their city in it, and also see Canada in it.” Seven Fallen Feathers, published by House of Anansi Press, is set to come out in the fall of this year, and will feature artwork on the cover by Christian Morriseau, son of celebrated Ojibway artist Norval Morriseau. The painting depicts the seven students who died, one of whom was the artist’s son, Kyle Morriseau. “I think it’s a fitting tribute,” Talaga says of the painting.

“There’s so many residential school survivors that are still around in a lot of these communities, and their children are the ones who are coming into Thunder Bay, or to Sioux Lookout, to go to school away from their home,” Talaga says. “There are many valuable lessons that are learned from their experience. It’s important for Canada.” Talaga hopes that readers will gain a better understanding of Indigenous people and their youth in Canada, and that the book helps negate stereotypes that are placed on them. “The book

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Weather Eye The Quest for Spring By Graham Saunders


s we all know, spring is the season between winter and summer, although the question of exactly when this season begins has a variety of answers. For meteorologists, it begins precisely on March 1. For astronomers (and for the date displayed on annual calendars) it depends on the vernal equinox (the day when the sun is overhead at noon at

the Equator)—an event that can happen any time between March 19 and March 21. No matter how one measures the beginning of spring, the length of daylight increases rapidly in the Northern Hemisphere from March into early May. The sun is higher in the sky and increases of three or four more minutes of sunlight per day

results in warmer temperatures. The warmth causes new plant growth to "spring forth.” The warmer it is, the faster plants will develop—up to a point. Growing degree days (GDDs) are used to estimate the growth and development of plants and insects during the growing season. Plant and insect development are very dependent on temperature and the day-to-day

accumulation of heat. The amount of heat required to move plants and insects to their next development stage remains constant from year to year, however the timing can vary considerably due to weather conditions.

by cooler days, but once growth has begun in pussy willows, grasses, and weeds, they are committed. Growing stops or is minimal but then resumes when sufficient GDDs return. There must be a life lesson in this!

GDDs are calculated by subtracting the daily mean temperature from a base temperature. The mean temperature is found by adding the high and low temperature for the day and dividing by two. Growth of vegetation will only occur if the temperature exceeds a specific minimum threshold, or base temperature. Base temperatures are different for each organism, but 5°C provides a convenient base in Canada for native plants and many “cool” vegetables and field crops. If the mean temperature is at or below the base, then the GDD value is zero. If the mean temperature is above the base, then the GDD amount equals the mean temperature minus the base. For example, if the mean temperature was 11° C, then the GDD amount equals 6 (11-5 = 6). Monthly and seasonal totals result from adding daily numbers and provide guidance for when to plant and which vegetables and crops are likely to reach maturity.

But this is not a totally good news story. The first American dog ticks this year made an appearance in early April south of Thunder Bay. Readers likely know that ticks are relatively new to the Thunder Bay area. A changing climate has resulted in benefits for gardeners but also for invasive species like ticks. An early spring can have an impact on tick populations by speeding up and extending their development cycle. More ticks put us and pets and livestock at greater risk of tick-borne diseases, especially Lyme disease. Ticks cannot fly or jump, and don’t drop down on victims from trees. They climb up on grass and other vegetation and wait patiently. The term is “questing”— poised to attach.

Native vegetation got an exceptionally early start this spring. Several days in early April were warm enough to result in GDDs and to flush out pussy willows. A record high temperature of 21°C on April 9 confirmed the process. This early warmth was followed

Does the early start to the tick season mean more ticks for longer? This in part depends on how ticks did last year and how many eggs survive over the winter. Favourite hosts include deer, mice, birds, and dogs. I am hoping for good timing—for us, not the ticks. If dry weather also has cool spells this could kill some of the larvae off before they find hosts. Other timing may include an early start for gardening and other warm season activities in the coming weeks.


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alleyway, where echoes and waves of guitar chased by bouncing motions of rhythms are crested by a gentle, emotional voice. The three-piece band—consisting of Josh Talakoski on vocal and guitar, Leif Peltonen on bass, and Dylan Maxwell on drums—flow and spin with a welcomed atmospheric fluidity.

Talk. The band would have various drummers over the years, until they finally found the perfect match in 2014 when Maxwell joined the group.

The band continues to evolve and grow their sound, considering themselves to be a work in progress, with as much of it coming from emotional influences as it does musical. Their first EP, Erased Faces, was released in 2012 and followed a much more structured song writing approach and allowed them to get their feet wet. Work on their upcoming EP, Surroundings, began in 2014 and was a much more natural and organic songwriting

The band was formed back in 2008 while original members Talakoski and Peltonen were still in high school. At the time there wasn’t any plan or direction, other than that they just wanted to play together and have some fun. After a few jams, they began to find themselves with an identity and a

caught up in the moments of life, losing perspective, turning inside of yourself, and becoming therapeutically disconnected from the world around you. It shows a band that has grown and is much more confident in their sound. With two EPs in their rearview, the band is already working on material for a full length CD they hope to release in the near future.

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Annual Festival Encourages and Inspires

Lakehead Festival of Music and the Arts Gala By Kris Ketonen


he long-running Lakehead Festival of Music and the Arts is, at its core, about one thing: inspiration. Sure, there are prizes—including trophies and scholarships—on the line for the thousands of participants to compete for. But coordinator Dawn Sebesta says there’s something else there for the myriad singers, musicians, and dancers to take home with them—a deeper love for their art. “I think if they come in the festival and they have some success, it does encourage them to keep going and keep at it,” Sebesta says. Another important aspect, she says, is the judging—everyone who evaluates the

performers comes from outside of Thunder Bay, something that Sebesta says is critical. “You want completely objective people that know nothing about what’s here in Thunder Bay,” she says. “We’re a small city. It would be hard to get somebody local who wouldn’t know a lot of these kids.” The 2017 edition of the festival, which has been going on for more than 80 years, has come to a close, having run over the course of several days in March and April. However, there’s still an opportunity to see some of this year’s performances during the festival gala, which is scheduled for later this month at the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium. “I call it a celebration of the festival, where we


have performances from all areas of the festival,” Sebesta says. “We have dance performances, and we have vocal, piano, and strings.” The gala will also see the awards and scholarships for this year handed out. “It’s a big night,” Sebesta says. “It’s a really great evening, and we’re just trying to profile it more so we can get more people to come and watch—members of the public, not just parents of kids who are performing.”

Thunder Bay Community Auditorium May 18 at 7 pm


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Vancouver's Alexandria Maillot performing at The Foundry


he chill from the harbour traveled through the streets of Thunder Bay on the evening of April 5, accenting a night of music and art at the Foundry. Making their first appearance in Thunder Bay, singer/songwriters Alexandria Maillot (Vancouver) and Kirsten Ludwig (Vancouver via Calgary) took to the Foundry stage, accompanied by local songstress Emily Kohne for a night that celebrated the power of female musicians. Although the pub chatter was persistent throughout most of the night, it did absolutely nothing to subdue the powerful voices, such as Emily Kohne’s—at times jazzy, and always dedicated. She was first to sing, and her set showcased songs of personal reflection, with tales introduced in true songwriter fashion supplemented by covers that convinced listeners of her charm. As the opening act, her performance warmed the room for diners and guests allowing for Ludwig to ease into her Thunder Bay debut. As Ludwig began to sing, the chill of the evening air seeped back into


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the room with an inescapable swirl. Everything warm and cozy suddenly shifted to the sombre melodies of songs such as “Cinnamon” and “Suzy” from her most recent EP Honest Tracks. Her soft, pitch-perfect voice did not shy away from the haunting, chamber-esque elements of the songs. Pure goosebumps. As the night made a final shift, Alexandria Maillot, the featured performer, faced the room. Maillot’s voice infused elements of blues and soul, packing a lot of punch behind the intricate lyrics of songs such as “Smitten” and “Sunday Sara,” tracks that can be found on her album Time. Her cheerful attitude added an extra energy to the ensemble of performances and reinforced the power of the music that was being played. This helped illustrate the unity of what all three performers were celebrating: a demographic of young, female, DIY artists that they all agreed is under-represented. By the end of the night, Maillot and Ludwig were charmed by Thunder Bay and were more than convinced to return.

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Feather the Flame

N’we Jinan and SLFNHA Team Up on Music Project Story by Stephanie Wesley, Photo by Brent Wesley


’we Jinan, a travelling music studio program, was invited by the Sioux Lookout First Nation Health Authority (SLFNHA) to work with youth recently on a music project. Both Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth participated in a weeklong series of workshops and events centered on the subject of reconciliation, which culminated in the creation of the song and music video “Feather the Flame.” The chorus of “Feather the Flame,” written and sang beautifully by a group of Northwestern Ontario youth, describes seeking reconciliation. The video is also available for viewing online now. “Minobimaadiziwin” is an Anishinaabe word for “the good life,” which is what the youth describe seeking in their song about reconciliation. Sydney Bell, a Sioux Lookout youth, says that the experience was “eye-opening” and “awesome.” Bell was invited by the

SLFNHA to participate. The young vocalist explains that it was her first time being involved in songwriting and filming a video. It was also one of the first times she really got to know the other Sioux Lookout youth who were involved in the program. Some youth came in from surrounding First Nation communities, while the others live in Sioux Lookout. Bell says that meeting them all helped her step out of her comfort zone when it came to making the song and video. “It was very nerve-racking at times,” she says. “We were all very nervous about recording a song, but we all did it. I’m sure all of us are very proud. I was very happy.” The feedback Bell says she has received regarding “Feather the Flame” has been positive, with many people telling her how proud they are. Bell says that the subject matter of reconciliation is very important to talk about, and writing the lyrics made her and her peers think about their lives and their experiences. Bell

Mino-bimaadiziwin, gather your spirits. Together we’ll change. Healing in action, feeling the same. Come to the fire and feather the flame. - Chorus of the song “Feather the Flame” also says that the music program N’we Jinan is a very important opportunity for youth, especially in the more northern communities. “It gives youth an opportunity to express themselves, and around here that’s kind of rare. I was glad to be a part of that,” she says. “It really does shift your perspective on things.”

the music made in the program is a huge confidence builder for the youth, and is a validation of how they are feeling. It also helps them express their innermost thoughts. “Kids don’t ever really share how they feel, but [sharing] through music it’s a way that speaks their language and helps to overcome fear,” he says.

One of N’we Jinan’s creators, David Hodges, says that

Hodges explains that because the youth are so connected to

music, it makes it easier for them to express themselves through the same medium. “You can really get kids really expressing themselves as long as it gives them the environment where they really feel safe,” Hodges says. More information on N’we Jinan and its music catalogue, including “Feather the Flame” can be found on

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Burnin to the Sky

admitted he learned most of his moves from Chuck Berry. There was only one thing to do then, and that was go check out the original songs myself.

Chuck Berry the Musical Giant By Gord Ellis


riting about Chuck Berry in the wake of his death at 90 last March is a very difficult gig. Just about every singer, guitar player, and songwriter has written eloquently about Chuck Berry's impact on them and their career. So many tributes, so many lives and careers touched. What more can be said? Well, I can only write about what Chuck Berry meant to me, a Thunder Bay boy and guitar slinger who has played live music for 30 plus years. And Berry's musical influence on me was unusually profound.

I should say right up front that my appreciation for Chuck Berry came by way of a surly, shaggy-haired guitarist named Keith Richards. The first time I heard songs like “Oh Carol,” “Let It Rock,” and “Sweet Little Sixteen” was via The Rolling Stones and Keith. I was a teenaged guitarist who was just learning about music, blues, and rock and roll. The Stones were the band I gravitated to— they had a danger and swampiness that moved my 16-year-old heart. The album that cemented my lifelong love for the Stones

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was Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out!. It had a cover of “Little Queenie” that sunk the knife. When Richards chugged out the ominous shuffle opening, cranked out those double stop breaks, and peppered sweet little syncopated licks around Jagger's vocals, it all just seemed like sheer genius. How did he do that? It was around that same time that I read an interview in Creem Magazine with Richards. It was here I discovered the guitar hero had basically taken Chuck's whole bag, but made it a little tighter and more "English." Richards freely

That body of work—from “Back in the USA” to “Brown Eyed Handsome Man” to “Nadine” and the ubiquitous “Johnny B. Goode”—makes up the single most covered, aped, and lifted songbook in the rock and roll canon. Chuck Berry knew how to write a song and a hook and was something of a street poet. His ability to string a long, complex narrative together over a boogie beat foreshadowed Bob Dylan. It goes without saying that the young Zimmerman would have absorbed a lot of Chuck Berry on the radio back in Minnesota. Then there was the Chuck Berry guitar: those iconic double stopped intros, the guitar break downs and all those little licks that punctuated his singing. What they may have lacked in precision—nearly every bar band guitarist in the world plays Chuck Berry licks more cleanly than Chuck did—they made up for with sheer inventiveness. No blues/rock guitarist worth his or her salt can really be considered gig-ready without a few Chuck licks in the arsenal. It doesn't matter whether you are the Edge or Lita Ford, you must know some Chuck Berry guitar licks. They are that important. And then there are the moves. Chuck Berry knew how to use his body to punctuate his songs.


He was both a storyteller and a showman. The duck walk, widesplayed legs, and low-slung guitar are all key parts of rock guitar hero 101. And Chuck was a badass as well. He never bothered trying to convince people he wasn't a bit scary. He had some unsavoury aspects to his personality that are well-documented, and he did some time behind the pipes. He was also subjected to racism, was ripped off by record companies and managers, and never really got the money he should have considering his gargantuan influence. Yet he carried on playing well into his 80s, even though he slowed down to one gig a month by the end. He never retired though, and kept on goin' round and round. On June 16 the last ever Chuck Berry album, called Chuck, will be released. These will be the first new Chuck Berry recordings in nearly four decades. Comprised of 10 new recordings, eight of which were written by Berry, Chuck is his first album of new songs since 1979’s Rock It. The album was recorded and produced by Berry in various studios around St. Louis, and features his longtime hometown backing group—including his children, Charles Berry Jr. (guitar), and Ingrid Berry (vocals, harmonica). From what I was allowed to hear, there will be no big surprises on the album. It is just good songs, with rock and roll electric guitar and a beat that you can dance to. A nice way to mark the end of an unparalleled career.


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Every Year a Celebration Onur on the Nine Lives of Black Pirates Pub By Justin Allec

Onur Altinbilek, owner, operator, bartender, insti-gator, and self-professed “jackass of all trades"


ine years gone, nine years strong, Black Pirates Pub has become a Thunder Bay staple for an eclectic array of live music. Helping ensure good times for the audience is Onur Altinbilek, owner, operator, bartender, instigator, and self-professed “jackass of all trades.” An old school punk guy who played his first show in 1993, Altinbilek moved to Thunder Bay from Toronto for school in 2002 but decided to

follow his love of live music into a different career path. “I think I need noise to survive,” he jokes. In early 2007 Altinbilek and a business partner eventually found themselves standing in the storage space that would become BPP. A massive clean-up and a complete refurbishment led to a grand opening in May of 2008. Just a jag off Red River, through doors guarded by BPP’s stark logo, there’s tonnes

of colour. There are metal and punk shows, certainly, but also about eight other genres that get regularly scheduled, as well as dance nights, drag shows, and art parties like DefSup’s Derelicte and The Hunger. BPP provides a positive piece in the community’s arts puzzle. “It’s easy to care, to participate,” Altinbilek tells me. “You’re working with people who know what they’re doing and love what they’re putting on.” Like

any committed relationship, a good night at BPP makes him happy but also hungry. If you’ve ever seen him really move behind the bar when the music’s loud, it’s evident how much fun he’s having. “To me, a passionate performance is what matters,” he says. “You can be an acoustic country act, as long as you’re giving it all. You should never come off the stage without a soaked t-shirt.”

Altinbilek concludes that whether he is open for one more year or 20, he’ll keep honouring the bar’s beginnings. With 20 acts on the bill for the anniversary party from May 3 to 6, the Nine Lives of BPP offers a broad sampling of our city’s best, as well as some visitors. “You celebrate every year because every year is a milestone,” he says. “You’ve survived.”

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Music presents ON THE SCENE

Hazed and Confused By Jimmy Wiggins

The Hazytones



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traight out of Montreal, The Hazytones have been making a name for themselves across North America and Europe since their inception in 2015. The trio—made up of Mick Martel (guitar/vocals), Antoine St-Germain (drums), and Fred Couture (bass)—brings intensity to the stage that can’t be matched, combining influences from the present and the past to create something fresh yet familiar. The band’s psychedelic sound peaks with hard stoner rock combined with a distinct retro-groove and an almost bluesy feel behind hauntingly powerful vocals. The Hazytones began production on their self-titled debut album in the fall of 2015. A few long months later, the first single, “Living On The Edge,” was released, followed by the track’s music video. To celebrate the upcoming album release, The Hazytones hit the road and toured across Canada in August and September of 2016. The album’s full release came on September 22 when The Hazytones performed at the Pop Montreal Festival at La Rockette Bar in Montreal. The album was well received by the stoner and psychedelic community in Canada, the USA, and Europe. In March, the band embarked on a 28-day European tour, bringing their retro/hard stoner rock sound to the UK,

Belgium, Switzerland, and France. After only a few short days of post-tour decompression back home, the band hit the road again for their second Canadian tour with 30+ stops between Montreal and Vancouver, including Thunder Bay. The Hazytones are definitely a band to be watching out for this year. Their music is sure to attract interest from the most avid 70s hard rock fan to the most tokedup stoner rock purist. They are quickly becoming the new face of stoner rock and have no plans to slow down. Band: The Hazytones Hometown: Montreal, QC Genre: Stoner Rock/Hard Rock/ Psychedelic Rock Recommended if you like: Kyuss, Queens of the Stone Age, Black Sabbath, Fu Manchu Website: TheHazytones

Black Pirates Pub May 26

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Hollerado Takes the Pressure Off Alternative Rockers to Play Crocks By Kris Ketonen


lternative rockers Hollerado are forging some new ground with their latest album.

“It’s our most political record,” vocalist/guitarist Menno Versteeg says of Born Yesterday, which was released on April 14. “We’ve always been people who have strong opinions, but it’s the first time we’ve felt the urgent need to sing about those opinions.” Diving into such potentially hazardous territory isn’t worrying Versteeg, or his bandmates. “With our music, there is an element of preaching to the choir,” Versteeg says. “Our fans are pretty open-minded, liberal, well-intentioned people, but yeah, I hope it opens some dialogue with people who do have some opposing viewpoints.” But there’s something else going on with Born Yesterday, Versteeg says. Putting the album together landed the members of Hollerado—also Jake Boyd, Nixon Boyd, and Dean Baxter—in a really good place. Versteeg doesn’t mince words on that front, calling a 10-week tour earlier this year the “most fun”


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they’ve ever had on the road. “We’re just loving the new material, we’re loving playing these songs, and we’re really putting no expectations on ourselves,” Versteeg says. “That feels really good. We’re just enjoying the process, and it’s really nice to do it that way.” All in all, it sounds like now is a really, really good time to see Hollerado live. Luckily, Thunder Bay residents will have a chance to do just that on May 31, when the band takes the stage at Crocks. The local gig is part of a two-month-long tour that will take Hollerado from southern Ontario out to Canada’s west coast. After that, it’s summer festival season, but Versteeg fully expects the band members to be turning at least some of their attention to their next album. “We haven’t really started it,” he says. “But I’m sure we’ll start picking at some ideas this summer.”



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Dustbowl Anthems for the North

Elliott Brood at Crocks Story and Photos by Tyler Sklazeski


ith a landscape peppered with abandoned silver mines and log cabin homesteads, Thunder Bay was ready for the message that Hamilton-based bluegrass “death country” outfit Elliott Brood delivered on April 21 at Crocks. Steeped in frontier history and times past, dark, melancholy themes fuel the band’s raucous, foot-stomping brand of Canadiana. Known for their engaging, high-energy performances, Brood’s Mike Sasso and Casey Laforet walked Casey Laforet

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a fine line between banjo-twanging infectious anthems, such as “Oh Alberta” from their sophomore release Tin Type, a healthy mix of covers from the likes of CCR, and new pieces, including “The Fall,” from their yet-to-be-released album Ghost Gardens. The new material embraces a haunting, reverb-laden sound with a crawling cadence reminiscent of some of Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder's solo material—a logical progression for a band that has seen its’ sound refined and tempered with each album.

this past June and working on their new record. Let’s raise our glasses to a band that’s worked hard and managed to have fun doing what they love while inviting us to share in the process.

True to their material, the trio navigated a range of local flora and fauna throughout the night with little trouble. I’m talking about the shot-givers (which were graciously accepted), the cat-callers (who were kicked out), the over-requesters, and the sapling-givers (yes, this happened), but it’s all part of the experience. The tar-coated, electric vocals of Sasso on tracks like “Fingers and Tongues” channelled this energy into positive places— mainly the stomping feet and flailing arms of concertgoers. Brood has been putting in the time touring heavily over the past few years following 2014’s Work and Love, along with recording a live album in Toronto

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Off theWall







Parts of Me

Arley Hughes

When reviewing Arley Hughes’ Parts of Me, my first instinct is to give you the impression that Hughes’ sound is a perfect blend of smokey Norah Jones jazz and Ella Fitzgerald’s blues at its rawest. But I’d be remiss to be that reductive. Hughes’ debut demonstrates she’s got the chops to be in a league of

her own. The Thunder Bay-born singer-songwriter weaves a gorgeous album with gossamer vocals like silk amidst woodsy, organic acoustic melodies accompanied by occasional bits of bluesy harmonica or dreamy piano. Parts of Me is an apt title; it’s an earnest offering in both sound and lyric. Hughes’

- Kirsti Salmi


For his 38th studio album and first three-disc vinyl set Dylan, the shapeshifting trickster, expands his emotional range into romantic ballads from the American Songbook and closes the circle on his oeuvre, his completed works. This is not any old karaoke record. It’s Bob Dylan: Nobel Laureate, Pulitzer Prize winner, Princeton Doctorate holder. Bob Dylan, who has devoted his life to playing for his fans and will continue to play as long as the audience outnumbers the band. He really means it, man. These hopeful dirges benefit from the deep resources of Columbia Records, who have sold 125 million of his albums worldwide. A pedal steel guitar splays a gorgeous Hawaiian sunset onto a black velvet soundscape of soft legato phrases of film-noir chords on this album. Recorded live off the floor with his ace band and a sombre horn section, great songs like “Stormy Weather,” “As Time Goes By,” and “Stardust” are sung with his husk of a voice imbuing each clear syllable with warm-hearted tenderness or aching longing and with a twinkle still in his eye.

With his unique style of music often defined as slackerrock, jizz jazz, or simply lo-fi, Canadian singersongwriter Mac DeMarco has had a cult following since his first solo effort in 2012. While those early albums were brimming with youthful energy in the forms of wobbly guitar solos and scruffy hooks, the 27-year-old has lately been slowing down in his young age. This Old Dog has a heavy Harry Nilsson and Michael McDonald vibe with the guitar solos and hooks replaced with hazy synths, slide guitars, and even a little bit of bossa nova. Although the lyrics are more evolved and deeper than previous albums, most of the tracks invoke the image of DeMarco as a crooner in a smoky lounge belting some adult contemporary tunes while a snifter full of tips sits on a piano. We all have to grow up sometime, but I’m missing the old Macky.

No restraint here. After last year’s strong debut Trve Northern Scvmbags, locals A New Machine are back with a five-song EP that manages to carry more repulsive weight. Occupation Depression is a pillaging raid on decency that combines sludge metal’s slothful riffs, grind’s noisy bashing, and sardonic, spewed vocals as a corrupt plinth for ANM’s preoccupation with addiction and hopelessness. A year older and even more annoyed at the face of existence, ANM’s songwriting smashes together all kinds of unholy ugliness to produce some unexpected beauty. It’s clarity and relief through excess. Take the title track, for example, subtitled “(Failure).” A long-form, wavering riff leads directly into blasts of offkilter death metal narrated by gnashing swamp beast vocals. A tortured cacophony almost overwhelms the song before a howling takes control and wrenches you towards the ending refrain. The whole album benefits from this maniacal attention. It’s a horrific but captivating eighteen minutes of abandon.

- Peter Jabs

- Adrian Lysenko

- Justin Allec

Bob Dylan


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This Old Dog

production is stripped of pretense and highly intimate, as though she’s in the room crooning just to you. Watch for tracks “Liquid Gold” and “Spark My Flame,” and keep tabs on Hughes’ live performances. She’s not one to miss.

Mac DeMarco

Occupational Depression

A New Machine

Autumn Springs

Jessica Graham

Trevor (Bill Pozzobon), an environmental researcher, travels up north to a summer resort, Autumn Springs, where he spent his teen formative years. But this summer he brings along his own teen daughter Lorren (Hannah Ehman) who comes along with reluctance. Bored and cynical in the beautiful wilderness, Lorren takes up with the local boys and parties the way all teenagers do, sneaking out of their cabin, partying, and drinking, just as her dad did so many summers ago. Autumn Springs is a tough and believable examination of sexual assault, spanning generations and genders. Its an important subject for our time. The film is open and spacious when it wants to be and close and intimate when it has to be. Producer Erin Horvath and director Jessica Graham cast strong leads and gathered an equally strong technical team. - Michael Sobota

American War

Omar El Akkad

American War is about the Second American Civil War. Taking place sixty years in the future and spanning a couple decades, the book follows Sarat and her family as they move about the war-torn Free Southern State, comprised of Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia, joined together in defiance against the U.S. ban on fossil fuels. Exposed to the horrors and tragedies brought down upon the FSS by the North, Sarat becomes converted to the Southern cause, and turns into one of its most fearsome soldiers. In the telling, El Akkad demonstrates the makings of a terrorist in a way that feels eerily real. On top of that, his story’s well-paced, with effective world-building and subtle characterization. I’m super impressed by American War, to the point that I want to loan it to everyone I know to readily demonstrate numerous techniques coming together effectively to make a compelling story. If you get the chance, read it.

Lake Nipigon: Where the Great Lakes Begin

Nancy Scott

Lake Nipigon’s history stretches back almost 13,000 years, and yet Nancy Scott has managed to tell its lengthy story in under 250 pages. Furthermore, she has packed an astonishing amount of research material and evidence into her account of this unique piece of Northwestern Ontario. This book outlines the contextual and cartographic beginnings of Lake Nipigon, which is often credited as the first of the Great Lakes. Scott goes on to provide both the natural and human history of the area as well as detailed discussion on the natural resources to be found there, recreation and tourism opportunities, and the future of Lake Nipigon itself. With so much information located in the same volume, this book will appeal to readers interested in history, geography, the environment, and the great outdoors. - Jesse Roberts

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Sincerely, Future Pollution Timber Timbre

Timber Timbre are not known for being particularly upbeat and Sincerely, Future Pollution won’t change that... however, the addition of synthesizers and electronic drums has definitely tweaked the band’s sound quite a bit. Think the darkness of Leonard Cohen set to mid-80s era Bowie and you’d be close. Once again, Timber Timbre have created an album in which you will find something different every time you listen. Songs will worm their way into your brain and bring you back to the album over and over again. Beautifully cinematic and, at times, incredibly earnest, Sincerely, Future Pollution might be a little more accessible for some fans but don’t let that dissuade you. The darkness remains and this album is going to be essential spring listening. - Jason Wellwood

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1 Cumberland Street South Positive Change for Storied Cumberland Corner By Laurie Abthorpe


he southeast corner lot of Cumberland Street and Arthur Street (now known as Red River Road) was purchased in 1871 by druggist W.J. Clarke and his brother Arthur for the amount of $50. In 1873, the Clarke Bros. drug store was established at Prince Arthur’s Landing. Though the Clarke brother’s partnership dissolved in 1881, W.J. Clarke continued operations and in 1889 built a new brick and stone building designed by architecture firm Forster and Ellis. Known as the Clarke block, this two-storey building consisted of three storefronts, a staircase to offices above, and pillars made of red limestone on the main level with white brick on the second. The new building featured vaults and was billed as having all of the modern conveniences of the day. In 1913, the Royal Bank of Canada purchased the block and opened its Port Arthur Branch in one of the storefronts. It was noted in an article regarding the sale published by the Port Arthur Daily News that the bank


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may construct a new block on that site in future. That prediction came true 42 years later. The building we see today, built by the Royal Bank of Canada in 1955, has modernist influences with its rectangular shapes and minimal ornamentation. The original construction included large grid pattern windows (since modernized) and limestone panel cladding with granite skirting on the façade. In 1998 the Royal Bank relocated to a shared location with Royal Trust at 214 Red River Road. The former bank was converted to a multiple tenant office building. The original 1950s bank safe along with a security gate have been retained throughout renovations. In June 2016, 1 Cumberland Street South became the new offices of law firm White Macgillivray Lester. Partner Peter White shares that not only was the history and prominence of this location compelling, but the opportunity to be part of the gentrification of the downtown community was also important in its selection. “White

Architecture Macgillivray Lester is happy to be part of the downtown community, and is actively taking steps to contribute to and participate in the Waterfront District,” White says. “There are so many wonderful restaurants, businesses, coffee shops, and boutique shops that have opened recently, and which contribute to the blossoming ‘vibe’; in addition, a number of community initiatives make palpable the energy and momentum of its rejuvenation. We want to be a part of this positive change.” White also has a unique personal interest in locating the law firm here, as early in the 1870s his great-grandfather, John Munro, also practiced law from an office right here on Cumberland Street. Laurie Abthorpe is the heritage researcher for the Heritage Advisory Committee, which advises city council on the conservation of heritage buildings, sites and resources, and their integration into development. For more information on the city’s heritage resources, visit

awareness ~ resiliency ~ connection

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Low Impact Camp Habits By Ellen Mortfield, Executive Director, EcoSuperior


ost people enjoy spending time at camp because of all that natural beauty around us— the lake, the trees, the birds, and wildlife. But all too often, we take our city-living habits with us out to camp, not realizing that we may be seriously impacting what we love most about our backwoods getaways. Think about that calm water where you enjoy seeing the turtles climb up on the log near shore and the loon whose plaintive calls lull you to sleep

at night. Every time you flush the toilet, wash dishes, or take a shower, your septic system at camp has to try to absorb all the soaps and substances that go down the drain. Eventually, those chemicals will seep out into the lake, so anything you use should be labeled biodegradable and phosphate-free. Use as little as possible. And although bathing and shampooing in the lake seems so refreshing, it’s not good for your lake or any of the fish and animals that call it home.

A composting toilet helps address a lot of problems, but if you have a regular toilet and septic system, keep in mind that the less water you use, the better. If you have gardens or plants to water, set up rain barrels and use those instead of a hose. Be conscious of other substances that can accidentally end up in the lake, such as fuel spills from a boat, lawn fertilizer, or pet waste. Try natural bug repellents and sunscreens, as conventional products are both environmental and human health hazards.

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There are probably no recycling facilities in your camp area, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bother recycling. Take your blue bags with you, fill them up and bring them back home. Some people think it saves space in the landfill to just burn garbage while at camp, but in fact, burning anything other than wood creates dangerous dioxins. Absorbed by vegetation and algae, those dioxins (a major carcinogen) come back to you and your family in the fish you catch and eat from the lake.

Either pack out your garbage or take it to the nearest landfill. With some care and consideration, your camp and its natural surroundings can continue to be enjoyed by generations to come.

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Time to

into action, Thunder Bay!

Each year, more than 11,000 registered volunteers clean up and beautify Thunder Bay by picking up litter from streets and parks during Spring Up to Clean Up in May. Join these registered volunteers and the many other people in our community who are out picking up trash while taking an evening stroll or going on an outing in the park . REG I STR ANTS RE C E IV E:

· free cleaning supplies · recognition of their efforts · a chance to win great prizes!

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The Thunder Bay Bike Summit Bike Summit Wants to Get You Riding By Caroline Cox


o you feel a little guilty every time you go in the garage and see that sad, dusty bike? Do you promise yourself that, this year, you will ride more but don’t seem to get out? We know your pain! What does it take to get you back on your bike? That’s what organizers of the Thunder Bay Bike Summit want to find out. The Summit takes place June 3 at Confederation College and includes a variety of activities that will help you rediscover your love of riding. Activities include instructive adult and family group rides, a bike rodeo for kids, and opportunities to give input into Thunder Bay’s Transportation Master Plan, the document that will be used to develop our city’s walking, biking, and driving infrastructure

for the next 30 years. “We wanted to walk the talk—or, literally, ride the talk—with the Bike Summit,” says Jessly Bonifacio, public health nurse at the Health Unit. “Our goal is to improve the health of individuals and our community by getting people of all ages riding more, so we’re hosting an event that is educational, active and informative—and where riding is front-and-centre. We’re also giving people an opportunity to tell the city and the consultants what cycling infrastructure they need and where they want it.” A big focus of this year’s expo will be getting families involved, and it’s one of the reasons organizers decided to host a bike rodeo and family rides led by professional instructors.

“We know that kids grow out of bikes fast and it’s expensive to buy new ones, so the bike swap is an opportunity to trade up and pay it forward,” says Bonifacio. For adults, the presentations will focus on what makes a great cycling city and what has been done so far. “These will be followed up by

your chance to share your ideas on how to make Thunder Bay a great place to ride and walk with the Transportation Master Plan consultants, IBI Group Inc,” she says. There are a limited number of loaner bikes available for those who do not have their

own. The entire event is free and will run from 10 am to 3 pm.

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Nature Calls us to Find Health Outdoors

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orthwestern Ontarians have no problem facing the cold, but overall, Canadians spend an estimated 90% of their time indoors and rank among the highest for spending time online. With this in mind, it is no surprise that increasing screen time and time spent indoors is contributing to the increasing rates of chronic disease and obesity.

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GRAND MARAIS ART COLONY 218.387.2737 | 120 W. 3RD AVE


Fortunately, the simple task of spending more time outside can help! Many links between good overall health and the outdoors can be found in the different aspects of our lives. • Being outdoors makes exercise the easy choice. Many outdoor activities require physical activity. Walking to the best fishing spot, carrying a basket for a picnic, or chasing after your kids in the park can help you achieve your recommended dose of exercise. Some research even suggests that those who take their intentional workouts outdoors are more likely to return for more, when compared to those who stick to an indoor gym routine. • Getting enough vitamin D won’t be an issue. Bone growth, cell growth, inflammation reduction, and neuromuscular and immune function are all thanks to vitamin D. Thankfully in Canada, many foods are fortified with vitamin D, such as cow’s milk, but spending some time outdoors will also help you reach the daily recommended intake of vitamin D. Just remember to slap on the sunscreen!

• De-stress in nature. Natural odours of jasmine, lilacs, roses, and even the smell of pine are all shown to be stress-busters that help to lower anxiety and depression. Maybe it is time to “stop and smell the roses.” • Become happier when outdoors. We become less stressed, and our negativity decreases. Researchers say that we shift towards more positive moods after spending time in nature. In fact, just five minutes of green (outdoor) exercise can improve self-esteem and mood. Spring is the perfect season to challenge yourself by participating in

the 30x30 Challenge! Created by the David Suzuki Foundation, the 30x30 Challenge encourages Canadians to spend 30 minutes in nature every day for 30 consecutive days. The challenge, which occurs in May, has helped thousands of Canadians achieve their daily dose of nature. Challenge your coworkers, friends, and family to take the challenge with you! To join the 30x30 Challenge, find simple activities to get outside, or learn more about the health benefits of being in nature, visit See you outdoors!

The Walleye


MayEventsGuide May 1-6 Critically Acclaimed National/ International Contemporary Art Definitely Superior Art Gallery

Knight Of Infinite Resignation Diane Landry (Quebec City): This immersive installation evokes the meditative sounds of water through the mesmeric continual motion of 12 windmill-like structures composed of 247 water bottles, light, and sand. Created by one of Canada’s most prominent artists, this extraordinary art experience has travelled the world, not to be missed! Canadian Contemporary 14 Dr. Chaudhuri Art Collection: An impressive curated selection of 14 art works from one of the largest private collections of contemporary art in our region. See works by Canadian artists, big on the international art scene and featured in major art magazines. Game of Chess - Marcel Dzama (Winnipeg/New York City): Dzama’s intricate visual language draws from diverse influences, including Dada, Bauhaus, and Marcel Duchamp. In this 14 minute black/white film, he illustrates a unique style reminiscent of the Triadic Ballet of the 1920s. Gallery hours: Tuesday to Saturday, noon-6 pm. All ages welcome. Admission by donation. 

May 3, 7 pm The Stairs Victoria Inn

A documentary screening. See this month’s Film and Theatre section for more info. ) 345-1516 ext. 246

May 3, 8 pm Rick Mercer’s Canada: Coast to Coast Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Rick Mercer chronicles, satirizes, and ultimately celebrates all that is great and irreverent about this country. Known as “Canada’s Unofficial Opposition,” Mercer is our most popular comic, a political satirist who knows exactly what matters to regular Canadians and what makes them laugh. 

May 3, 8 pm Rock, Paper, Scissors Red Lion Smokehouse

Are you a Rock, Paper, Scissors champion? Pit your skills against the masses to find out. Entry is $5 per person. Winner receives $50 cash. 

May 4, 5–10 pm Steam Whistle Unfiltered Tasting Red Lion Smokehouse

The Good Beer Folks will be on hand for an unfiltered Steam Whistle Pilsner tasting! Swing by for some tasty beer samples and wings! 

May 5, 5:30–9:30 pm Neechee Studio Word Carving Workshop FWFN Community Centre Cultural Room

Indigenous youth from all communities are welcome to attend this free workshop with George Price. Free food, beverages, and transportation are provided. Live too far away or can’t make it to the workshops? Post your own art on Instagram #neecheestudio or Facebook to be in the Neechee art book! *

May 5–6 Tangled on Tour Thunder Bay Art Gallery and In Common Resto-Bar

An art festival showcasing local and international professional artists with disabilities. See this month’s Art section for more info. 

May 6, 10 am–3 pm Annual OLG Casino Thunder Bay Recycling Event OLG Casino Parking Lot

The OLG Casino Thunder Bay recycling event turns old tires into cash with proceeds going to EcoSuperior. Every tire dropped off represents a donation for EcoSuperior to support their community environment programs. *






May 6, 10 am–4 pm Silvana’s Early Mother’s Day Event DaVinci Centre

Over 60 local vendors! Free admission and door prizes. ) 475-4444

May 6, 11:30 am–1:30 pm Pints and Poses Red Lion Smokehouse

A great way to start your Saturday morning: a one hour flow yoga class followed by a craft beer tasting. Tickets are $35 and include yoga, beer tasting, and some light snacks. This session will be taught by Paula DiGiuseppe. 

May 6, 6 pm CWE Presents WWE Icon Mr. Wonderful Paul Orndorff West Thunder Community Centre

Live pro wrestling comes to Thunder Bay! Tickets: VIP First Priority Access Meet and Greet $22, General Admission $17 in advance, $20 at the door. Advance tickets available at Comix Plus Music Exchange, West Thunder Community Centre, Popeye’s Supplements, and online. 

May 6–7 Folklore Festival Fort William Gardens

Take a trip around the world in 48 hours at the Thunder Bay Multicultural Association’s annual Folklore Festival. See this month’s Top Five for more info. 

Until May 7 Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School Exhibition Thunder Bay Art Gallery

The Thunder Bay Art Gallery is once again pleased to collaborate with Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School to present student art from the 2017 art class. 

May 7 Sixth Annual Craft Revival Various Locations

Thunder Bay’s spring craft extravaganza is back for another year, with all your favourite vendors as well as some brand new venues to switch things up. See this month’s Top Five for more info.  events/766438753504849/

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The TheWalleye Walleye

May 7, 10 am–2 pm Spring into Summer Victoria Inn

A craft and vendor sale. Admission is $2. *

May 7, 1–2 pm World Laughter Day Baggage Building Arts Centre

Come out for a laughter yoga class on World Laughter Day. No experience required. All ages and abilities welcome. 

May 7, 6–8 pm Ultra Curious Thrive Strength & Wellness

Ultra Running is running any distance greater than the traditional marathon (26 Miles/ 42.7 KM). Runs are 50, 100, or 200 miles. If you’re curious about this sport, come out for a free talk. All are welcome and no running experience required. 

May 7 & 10 Mosaic Butterfly Workshop Vintage Pixie Studio

Don’t think you are creative? We can prove you wrong! Take home a completed project no matter your experience. Workshops is $125 plus HST. Registration can be made in person, by phone, or e-transfer. Space is limited so don’t delay. All workshops are for 16 years and up 

May 7, 4–6 pm Out of the Darkness Memorial Walk Confederation College

A walk to reduce the stigma surrounding suicide and mental illness. See this month’s City Scene section for more info. ) 472-6174

May 9, 6–9 pm Speakers’ School Talks Social Justice City Hall Council Chambers

New Directions Speakers’ School is hosting a dynamic evening to celebrate the graduation of our latest class of speakers! All are welcome to attend. A light meal will be provided for free at 6 pm with speeches starting at 6:30 pm. 

May 9–13, 7 pm We Will Rock You St. Ignatius High School

St. Ignatius High School presents the musical We Will Rock You. Tickets are $20 per person and can be purchased at the St. Ignatius High School main office. A portion of the proceeds is going towards the Heart and Stroke Foundation, George Jeffery Children’s Centre, and St. Andrew’s Dew Drop Inn. ) 344-8433

May 10, 7:15–9:30 pm Lakehead Stamp Club Meeting Hammarskjöld High School Library

Program is a tribute to the letter “P” and a speaker, with a floor auction. Entry is free. Visitors are welcome. 

May 10, 8–10 pm Arts and Craft Beer Red Lion Smokehouse

Come out for a two-hour session where you will learn to create beautiful handmade chocolates with Rena Litts from ChocoLitts. No experience necessary. Your class fee includes a pint of Ontario craft beer and all supplies. 

May 11–13, 7:30 pm Hairspray Jr. Paramount Theatre

The 1950s are out, and change is in the air! Hairspray Jr. is the familyfriendly musical piled bouffanthigh with laughter, romance, and deliriously tuneful songs. Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for students/ seniors. Tickets available for purchase at Maple Tops and at the door. ) 344-5483

May 12, 7:30–9:30 pm Ken Morrison Lecture #6 Superior CVI

Hikmatullah Sherzad, Imam for the Thunder Bay Masjid will present a lecture entitled “Personal Responsibility in a Time of Public Chaos.” Admission to all lectures is free but donations are accepted at the door. 

In the parking lot of the Gillies Community Centre, various breeds of poultry will be for sale or trade, including water fowl, rabbits, hatching eggs, chick supplies, etc. *

May 13, 6 pm NOWW’s Literary Awards Party Prince Arthur Waterfront Hotel and Suites

Northwestern Ontario Writers Workshop’s annual celebration of local writers and writing. See this month’s City Scene section for more info. 

May 13, 7–9 pm Ukrainian Fantasies Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

The Zorya Ukrainian Dance Association of Thunder Bay presents their 19th Annual Concert “Ukrainian Fantasies.” With almost 90 dancers on stage, you will enjoy a wonderful evening of Ukrainian music, folklore, and dance. Fantastic entertainment for all ages! 

May 14, 2 pm Dance Dynamics Studio Presents Inspirations Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Tickets are $23 for adults, $18 for children 12 and under. 

May 17, 5:30–7 pm Top Three Things You Must Know to Export Art and Craft Thunder Bay Art Gallery

Lessen the fear of having your work cross borders with knowledge for small artist-entrepreneurs. Presented by Craft Ontario, this presentation will be followed by a question and answer period as time allows. Open to all visual artists, craftspeople, and administrators. 

May 17, 7 pm Legacy Performing Arts Company Presents This Is Our Legacy Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Come out for an evening of dance while the artistic performers of Legacy Performing Arts Company entertain you. Sit back, relax, and enjoy all their talent and splendor as these local dancers are showcased in their routines that they been working so hard on all year. Tickets are $15-$23. 

A comedy presented by Cambrian Players. See this month’s Top Five/Film and Theatre section for more info. 

May 18, 7 pm Lakehead Festival of Music and the Arts Gala Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Celebrating the very best of the festival. 

May 19, 7–10 pm Gala Opening Reception: RetroGraduate Exhibition & DieActive Night Brats Definitely Superior Art Gallery

RetroGraduate Exhibition 2017: An exciting multidisciplinary convergence, featuring selected artworks from the students’ four year LU Visual Art program, and also including new works. Congrats to: Emilee De Sommer-Dennis, Katie Kramer, Elena Rogalski, Afnan Mallouk, Rachel Geraghty, and Asia Shultz. Support artists of the future! A dirty lil bratty lil exhibition by the Die Active Art Collective: Featuring sculpture, projection, and audience participatory works by over 20 emerging artists. All presented as one multi-media installation for viewer to get dirty in. Enjoy a ferocity of art, music, and a bevy of catered spring refreshments. Exhibition continues until June 17. Gallery hours are Tuesday to Saturday, noon-6 pm. All ages welcome. All by donation. 

May 23, 7:30 pm Thunder from Down Under Thunder Bay Community Auditorium

Australia’s hottest export—Thunder From Down Under—hits an intimate Vegas stage every night of the week showing off chiseled bodies, seductive dance routines, cheeky humor and boy-next-door charm. 

May 23 & 25 Clay Pendant, Earrings, and Necklace Workshop Vintage Pixie Studio

Don’t think you are creative? We can prove you wrong! Take home a completed project no matter your experience. Workshops is $75 plus HST. Registration can be made in person, by phone, or e-transfer. Space is limited so don’t delay. All workshops are for 16 years and up. 

May 25, 7–9 pm Poetry Slam Espresso Joya

May 27, 2–4 pm Youth Celtic Session Hosted by Pierre Schryer Sweet North Bakery

James Lapine and Stephen Sondheim take everyone’s favorite storybook characters and bring them together for a timeless, yet relevant, piece... and a rare modern classic. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students/seniors. Tickets available for purchase at Maple Tops and at the door. ) 344-5483

This fun poetry slam features an open mic inviting anyone to come and perform their poetry in front of an audience. This will be a noncompetitive (no judges) slam event but the audience will be encouraged to shout out their engagement with the poem and its delivery. *

May 26, 7 pm Book Launch - Two New Books by Merk & Kyle Lees Definitely Superior Art Gallery

A book launch celebrating the release of two new books from local artists/ authors Merk and Kyle Lees. Ski Ninjas-Vol 1: This is Free on the Internet is the first collection of Kyle Lees’ gag-a-day online comic strip that ran from 2006-2017. Season of the Dead Hours is Merk’s third graphic novel and his first completely solo book that delves into Celtic myth and magic, as old world sorcery returns to present day. Refreshments, dancing, and more! All ages welcome. See this month’s Art section for more info. 

May 26, 7:15–9:30 pm Lakehead Stamp Club Meeting Hammarskjöld High School Library

Lakehead Stamp Club will meet on Friday May 26, 2017 at 7:15 pm, Hammarskjöld High School Library. Program is a speaker, with a table auction. Entry is free. Visitors are welcome. 

May 27, 8 am–1 pm RFDA Flea Market Regional Food Distribution Association

A fundraising initiative to support the RFDA’s Kitchen Programming. Including a flea market sale, plant table, bake sale, and penny auction. Come support the RFDA and learn more about their work while you’re there. 

A fun, non-competitive bike ride for all ages in support of Bicycles for Humanity Thunder Bay Chapter with distances from 10-50 km. There will be refreshments, snacks, and support along the routes plus live blues music, prizes, and auctions. 

May 17–27 The Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery Finlandia Club

Please email alex@redlionsmokehouse. ca to register. There are only 16 spots available. Spots will be allocated on a first come/first serve basis. $5 entry fee, $50 prize. 

May 27, 11 am 25th Annual Mini Go Ride Neebing Roadhouse

This invitation is to all youth Celtic players (with fiddle, guitar, harp, flute, whistle, bodhran, voice) and to adults who want to participate in this open Celtic session, hosted by fiddler Pierre Schryer and geared to all levels of playing. There will be food and drinks available for purchase. This is a free event. ) 344-3430

May 27, 6:30 pm May-Hem Mixer Delaney Arena

Thunder Bay Roller Derby League is hosting skaters from around the region for a mixer! As a special bonus TBJRDL will be having a mini mixer to open up the night! Come out for a chance to see new skaters, and to cheer on some juniors who get a chance to hone new skills! 

May 30, 6–9:30 pm Whimsical Dragonfly Workshop Vintage Pixie Studio

Don’t think you are creative? We can prove you wrong! Take home a completed project no matter your experience. Workshops is $60 plus HST. Registration can be made in person, by phone or e-transfer. Space is limited so don’t delay. All workshops are for 16 years and up 

May 30, 6:30–8:30 pm Fresh Air Trail Run Kamview Nordic Centre

Tuesday evening trail runs start at 6:30 pm. Register at Kamview from 5 to 6 pm. Short course or long course. Fee is $5; free kids’ mini-race! 

Photo : Tyler Sklazeski

May 13, 1–4:30 pm Small Animal Husbandry Gillies Community Centre

This free workshop will introduce you to a way of learning to improve yourself through exploring how you use your body. It is suitable for almost everyone from young athletes to old grandparents. 

May 24–27, 7:30 pm Into The Woods Paramount Theatre

Elliott Brood

May 17, 8–10 pm Classic Board Game Night: Clue Red Lion Smokehouse

Yeah, We Were There.

May 13, 10 am–noon Feldenkrais Workshop St. Paul’s United Church

Until June 4 Confluence Thunder Bay Art Gallery

Organized by Carleton University Art Gallery, Confluence is an exhibition by Meryl McMaster. 

May 27, 10 am–noon Arbor Day 2017 Vickers Park

Join the City of Thunder Bay at this great family event in transforming park land. Come ready to plant. Be sure to bring a shovel and work gloves. 

The Walleye The Walleye

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Music May 1 Every Folk’n Monday Night at The Foundry The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Canadian Playboyz The Fastlane 9 pm • $20+ • 19+

May 2 James Boraski Blue Door Bistro 12 pm • No Cover • AA A Salute to Canada & the British Isles Hilldale Lutheran Church 7:30 pm • $5+ • AA The Best Karaoke in Thunder Bay The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 3 BPP’s 9-Year Anniversary Bash – Part 1 Black Pirates Pub 7 pm • $5 • AA Blast From The Sun with Amberwood The Foundry 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 4 Thursday Night Open Jam Espresso Joya 7 pm • No Cover • AA Irish Session Red Lion Smokehouse 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Jazzy Thursday Nights The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Prime Time Karaoke Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8:30 pm • No Cover • 19+ BPP’s 9-Year Anniversary Bash – Part 2 Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $5 • 19+ Open Stage w/ Craig Smith & Tiina Flank The Foundry 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 5 Duelling Pianos Rockhouse 7 pm • $5 • 19+ James Boraski & Momentary Evolution Crocks 7:30 pm • $8 • 19+ Silence Factory w/ The Thirsty Monks The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+

BPP’s 9-Year Anniversary Bash – Part 3 Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $5 • 19+

May 6 Canadian Songwriters Series The Royalton 7 pm • $10 • 19+ Arley Hughes Parts of Me Album Release Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 7:30 pm • $5 • 19+ Archspire Crocks 9 pm • $10 • 19+ Stress Free w/ DJ Big D The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+ BPP’s 9-Year Anniversary Bash – Part 4 Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $5 • 19+ Café Paris Red Lion Smokehouse 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 7 Celtic Revival w/ Pierre Schryer & Clay Breiland The Foundry 7 pm • $10 • AA Open Jam Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8 pm • No Cover • AA

May 8 Every Folk’n Monday Night at The Foundry The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ May 9 James Boraski Blue Door Bistro 12 pm • No Cover • AA May 11 Thursday Night Open Jam Espresso Joya 7 pm • No Cover • AA Irish Session Red Lion Smokehouse 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Jazzy Thursday Nights The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Prime Time Karaoke Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8:30 pm • No Cover • 19+ Open Stage w/ Craig Smith & Tiina Flank The Foundry 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 12 The Five Man Acoustical Band Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 5:30 pm • No Cover • AA Rebel Spirit Itai Lounge 6:30 pm • $5 • 19+

Jazzy Thursday Nights The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Prime Time Karaoke Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8:30 pm • No Cover • 19+

Duelling Pianos Rockhouse 7 pm • $5 • 19+

Open Stage w/ Craig Smith & Tiina Flank The Foundry 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

Pre-Pride Party & Drag Show Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $10 • 19+

Local Rock Showcase Black Pirates Pub 8 pm • $6 • AA

Elise Roller The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+

May 19 Duelling Pianos Rockhouse 7 pm • $5 • 19+

May 13 Folk’n Saturday Afternoons The Foundry 1 pm • No Cover • 19+ Tales Of Romance Hilldale Lutheran Church 7:30 pm • $25 • AA Veteran’s Night Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8 pm • $10+ • 19+ Union Duke The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+ Carlo C. Red Lion Smokehouse 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 14 Open Jam Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8 pm • No Cover • AA Ninjaspy Black Pirates Pub 8 pm • $TBA • 19+

May 15 Every Folk’n Monday Night at The Foundry The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ May 16 James Boraski Blue Door Bistro 12 pm • No Cover • AA The Best Karaoke in Thunder Bay The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 18 Thursday Night Open Jam Espresso Joya 7 pm • No Cover • AA Irish Session Red Lion Smokehouse 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

Prime Time Karaoke Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8:30 pm • No Cover • 19+ Open Stage w/ Craig Smith & Tiina Flank The Foundry 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 26 Duelling Pianos Rockhouse 7 pm • $5 • 19+ The Hazytones Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $5 • 19+ Skye Wallace The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+

May 20 Folk’n Saturday Afternoons The Foundry 1 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 27 Folk’n Saturday Afternoons The Foundry 1 pm • No Cover • 19+

Michael Abraham Trio Red Lion Smokehouse 10 pm • No Cover • 19+

Us as Them: Led Zeppelin The Foundry 10 pm • $5 • 19+

May 21 The Way We Used to Do’er Acoustic Tour Espresso Joya 7 pm • $10 • AA Open Jam Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8 pm • No Cover • AA Voltang Black Pirates Pub 10 pm • $5 • 19+

May 22 Every Folk’n Monday Night at The Foundry The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ May 23 James Boraski Blue Door Bistro 12 pm • No Cover • AA The Best Karaoke in Thunder Bay The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 25 Thursday Night Open Jam Espresso Joya 7 pm • No Cover • AA

Bingo Beats: 80’s Red Lion Smokehouse 10 pm • $2 • 19+

May 28 Open Jam Port Arthur Legion – Branch 5 8 pm • No Cover • AA May 29 Every Folk’n Monday Night at The Foundry The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ May 30 James Boraski Blue Door Bistro 12 pm • No Cover • AA The Best Karaoke in Thunder Bay The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

May 31 The Cover Show 20 – Part 1 Black Pirates Pub 8 pm • $5 • 19+ Hollerado Crocks 9 pm • $15 • 19+

Irish Session Red Lion Smokehouse 7 pm • No Cover • 19+ Jazzy Thursday Nights The Foundry 7 pm • No Cover • 19+

Brought to you by:

For more info visit


The Walleye


LU Radio’s Monthly Top 20




13 Las Rosas


Near to the Wild Heart of Life





Run The Jewels




The Flatliners*


Dine Alone

Run the Jewels, Inc.


Cadence Weapon*


Hanitra Ranaivo


The SkudFux*







Alejandra Ribera*


Power Trip


Southern Lord



Joji Hirota & The London Taiko Drummers




ARC Music

Japanese Taiko


Body Count

Rafael & Energia Dominicana*

The Century

Check out our weekly charts online at or tune in to the weekly Top 20 Countdown Saturday from 5-7pm (or the rebroadcast Monday 2-4pm) on 102.7fm in Thunder Bay or stream us live world-wide at

12 Japandroids*

Rick Ross

CILU 102.7fm’s Monthly Charts for this issue reflect airplay for the month ending April 18, 2017.

Top 20


Rather You Than Me Run The Jewels 3

My Crew (Woooo) [single] My Rise

Electronic 1


ink Fizz

Future Politics

Ernest Jenning Recording Co.

Ogopogo Punk



16 Brandon Can't Dance




Sarah McKenzie

Ninja Tune



Hermon Mehari

Unlabeled Publishing


Harris Eisenstadt*


Graveyard of a Goodtime

Concrete Desert Migration

Tin Angel

Young Turks


Honey Beard*


B.A. Johnston*


Wyatt Records


No Terrain* Five Alarm Funk*


Colorado Jazz Repertory Orchestra

Ninja Tune





The xx




From This Side

Pick A Piper*

No Terrain

Johanna Sillanpaa*

The Bug vs. Earth


ARC Music


17 Gen Gorman*

Gremlins 3

Enamorarse en la Playa (Falling in Love at the Beach)




This Island


Everyone Gets Exactly What They Want

I See You





Au Naturel


15 Canailles

14 The Evaporators*

Lucky Number

18 Do Make Say Think

For A Friend


Stubborn Persistent Illusions



Dreamless Sleep


Paris in the Rain Bleu

Recent Developments

20 Feist*


Universal Music Canada

Local Action


Hip Hop


Tim Darcy*



Hosted by Aaron & Patrick


Cash Money

Mondays 10 - 11 pm


British Sea Power

Golden Chariot

The Tourist


11 Century Palm*


Folk•Roots•Blues 1

The Bitter Chills

Mint 400


Bill Bourne*



The Harpoonist & The Axe Murderer*

Feel-Good Songs for Feel-Bad People Hummingbird




Brock Zeman*

Busted Flat


Ian Kelly*

Sunset Hill Music



* Indicates Canadian Content

More Life

807 & the Park

Let the Dancers Inherit the Party

10 Clap Your Hands Say Yeah

Digging Mercy's Grave

This Month's Show Spotlight:

Dawn Richard

Nightmare Logic

Feel Your Feelings Fool!


Saturday Night


Warner Brothers


Inviting Light

19 The Regrettes

Meet You


807 & the Park gives talented upcoming individuals a chance to be heard. Aaron and Patrick provide in depth analysis of rap/hip hop music with a focus on new and hot artists. They also talk about controversial issues, providing their insights and analysis on how these issues can be resolved or improved.

Aaron and Patrick’s Song of the Moment: Drake - "Blem" The TheWalleye Walleye

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807-345-0997 |

132 Cumming St. Thunder Bay


Thurs., Fri., Sat.


French country * shabby chic * industrial décor * artisan made collectables * gift and garden ware * DIY supplies

New items arriving daily

DIY Workshops


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Remembering the General Monument Campaign

When you want quality plants,

Go where they grow!

683 Woodcrest Rd., (807) 767-6900

Rooster’s Remembers This Mother’s Day Sunday, May 14, 2017

celebrate all the babies born, all the mothers made, and all the men and women who worked at the former

Port Arthur General Hospital.

Check out our new website!

BREAKFAST - BRUNCH - LUNCH 20% of the day’s proceeds will go to

Remembering the General Monument Campaign Help to ensure the role of the Port Arthur General Hospital, in the history of Thunder Bay, is never forgotten

Rooster’s Bistro 32 St, Paul’s Street 8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. SPONSORED BY:

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Small Steps with a Big Sound By Damien Lee


ort William First Nation just became a leader in band membership issues in Canada. Late in 2016, the Fort William band council announced that it recommitted the band to following its 1987 Membership Code. A blast from the past, the Fort William Membership Code lays out innovative ways for the band to determine who belongs with the community. However, there was one catch: band membership at Fort William First Nation was no longer contingent on Indian status. And this sets the band apart from the majority of First Nations in Canada. To understand why this is so important, though, we’ll first need to take a detour into the complex landscape of the Indian Act. But don’t worry; we’ll come back to Fort William in a moment.


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A “status Indian” refers to a person who is registered as an Indian under Canada’s Indian Act. While that might seem simple enough, the way Indian status has been applied is anything but simple. For example, for decades, Indigenous women lost their Indian status if they married a non-Indian man, regardless of whether that man was Indigenous or not. On the other hand, many non-Indigenous women gained Indian status if they married a man registered as an Indian. These rules changed in 1985. Nowadays, status is not gained or lost through marriage.

the Indian Act that enabled Indian bands to control their own membership lists if they so chose. Along with more than 200 other Indian bands in Canada, Fort William opted to develop and control its own membership code, and did so in consultation with the community, leadership, and a lawyer.

Indian status is therefore a funny concept—it kind of refers to Indigenous peoples, but also kind of doesn't.

Until Fort William opted to control its membership in 1987, one had to be a status Indian in order to be a member of the band. The problem with this is that the Indian Act hijacks love. Like anyone else in the world, Anishinaabeg fall in love with whomever they choose. If you are a status Indian and happen

In getting back to Fort William First Nation, the band opted to separate Indian status from membership through a referendum in 1987. This was made possible by a section of

So why is Fort William a “leader” in membership issues now? To understand this question, we need to go back to the Indian Act, and this time work in a little bit inherent Anishinaabe law for good measure.

to fall in love with someone who doesn’t have Indian status, there is a chance that your children won’t have status. Over time, the more this happens, the less registered Indians there will be. Indigenous peoples are the only people in Canada forced to have to choose between love and their rights.

of band membership issues because its band membership code throws off Indian status as the measure of who belongs. Instead, the code recognizes the sovereignty of families to bring people into the community through birth, marriage, and adoption.

On the other hand, Anishinaabe law does not depend on Indian status or the Indian Act. It is centered on love. In terms of determining who belongs, Anishinaabe law says that families decide.

Lastly, it is important to note that band membership codes are not expressions of inherent Anishinaabe law. That said, Fort William’s code is a step in the right direction in that it moves the community one step further from the Indian Act. Many more steps are needed. But as with everything, change takes time.

Families are the essence of self-determination. They bring new people into Fort William through love. Examples of this include bringing people into the circle through birth, marriage, and adoption. It is families that renew the nation, not band offices or federal legislation. Thus, Fort William has emerged in a leader in terms

As my good friend Robin Ranger once said, “meaningful changes comes in the form of small steps with a big sound.” The recent revelations about Fort William’s membership law have been nothing if not a big sound, even if they are only a small step forward.


much more aggressive and withdrawn. We used to be close but now...” He shrugged. “Not so unusual for a kid his age.” I kicked myself for that. I didn’t want to discourage Bob from hiring me for whatever he wanted me to do. “And you think this behavior is linked to his friends?” “They’re a rough bunch. My wife doesn’t even like them coming over to the house. She says she’s afraid for her safety.” He looked around to be sure no one was listening then leaned close. “I’m not prejudiced but a couple of his new friends are black. The way they dress and act I think they could be gang members.” He straightens up. “With kids these days it’s hard to tell. They look and act like criminals even if they’re on the honor roll.” “Is Bob Junior on the honor roll?” “No. He’s never been much of a student but neither was I and I turned out all right. Got my forklift ticket when I was his age and been working ever since.”

Mittens, digital Illustration, 2017, boy Roland

Excerpt from the novel Vicious Dogs By Henry Brock

I had polished off my apple fritter (delicious) and was nearly done my coffee when a bald man in khakis and a baby blue golf shirt entered the Timmy’s and began scanning the faces at the tables without a glance at the cashiers. Not here for the coffee or donuts, I thought. My detecting skills told me this was my man. The worry lines across his forehead were another indicator. He had the troubled look of a man desperate enough to hire someone like me. I stood and waved to the man and he nodded and walked to my table. “Are you with Lasker Investigations?” he asked. He didn’t need to know that I was Lasker Investigations. “Derek Lasker.” I held out my hand. “Bob Linehan.” He sat down and sighed. He had his elbows on the table and his gaze was

centered on my coffee cup. The pain in his eyes had me thinking that Bob understood the dark thoughts that had invaded my thoughts over the past several months. “Do you want a coffee?” I asked. He shook his head. His skin was flushed and I wondered if Bob was a drinker or in poor health. We sat there awkwardly for a minute. “What can we do for you, Bob?” “It’s my son, Bob Junior. He’s been hanging out with a new group of friends and... I’ve seen changes in him.” “How old is he?” “Seventeen.” “What sort of changes?” “Well...” He straightened up and sighed. He met my eyes briefly then looked away. His eyes were wet and runny as an uncooked egg. “He’s become

“There’s something else, isn’t there? This isn’t just about running with a rough crowd.” “No, you’re right.” He took a shuddering breath. “Two days ago I went into the back yard to mow the lawn and I found the neighbor’s cat. It was dead and its head had been cut off and I think Bob Junior did it.” “I see,” I said in my best passionless professional voice. Bob Junior had killed and beheaded the neighbor’s pet. Kook City. That explained the look of pain on Bob Senior’s face. “And you’re certain that he did it?” “After I found Mittens I went inside and Bob Junior was playing a video game with one of his friends—one of the ones that scares my wife the most— and I asked to talk to him. He said that he was in the middle of a level.” The anger on Bob Senior’s face was plain to see. “We used to be good friends, all those early mornings of hockey practice, and now?” He shakes his head. “I said I needed to talk to him about something I found in the backyard and...” I thought Bob Senior was about to break down in tears. “...and when I said that someone had killed Mittens both of them started laughing like I had made a big joke! Then—then he said... the little punk bastard... he said ‘someone guillotined that pussy!’ and he had his gangbanger friend

continued laughing and playing their game like nothing had happened.” “So what makes you think he killed the cat?” “He knew that’s it’s head was chopped off didn’t he?” “He could have found it earlier and not said anything.” “I don’t think so. He always hated Mittens. I couldn’t stay in the room with those two... two bastards so I went out back and buried poor Mittens. I could have throttled Bob Junior right then and there.” The cold anger on his face had me believing him. “Derek, I’m—can I call you Derek?” I shrugged. “Sure.” “I’m worried about him, Derek. I’m worried that he’s going to do something really crazy. He likes knives.” “Likes them how?” “He collects them. Has a whole closet full.” That struck me. “A closet full of knives?” “I didn’t think it was strange. I mean, I used to carry a pocketknife when I was his age. Still do.” He reached into his pocket and pulled out a very fancy folding knife. “Though this is a hell of a lot nicer than what I used to have.” He handed it to me. “It’s a Ron Yellowhorse. Very expensive. My wife got it for me for our last anniversary.” It had two blades and a dark wooden handle with intricate silver inlay. “A work of art,” I said as I handed it back. I didn’t mention that I thought it a little strange that a wife would buy her husband a knife for an anniversary but my wife left me after less than a year so what the hell did I know. I put on my most concerned look. “I can feel your concern, Bob, so we’ll give you a great rate, okay?” Bob Senior smiled and I could see the relief on his face. “Thanks, Derek. I can see I did the right thing in calling you.”

Vicious Dogs is available locally at Chapters and online. For more information visit

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Profile for The Walleye Magazine

May 2017  

Have you ever wondered where the term “going to camp” came from? As part of our cover story, writer Bonnie Schiedel does some investigating...

May 2017  

Have you ever wondered where the term “going to camp” came from? As part of our cover story, writer Bonnie Schiedel does some investigating...