Page 1

SPRI N G 2 0 1 9






Achieving the perfect balance between personal style and being on trend

The faces of one of Niagara's oldest man-made landmarks, the Skylon Tower

on the cover…



An interview with wine connoisseur, Victoria Gilbert










Located in Hilton Niagara Falls/Fallsview Hotel & Suites directly across from Fallsview Casino Resort 6361 Fallsview Blvd, Niagara Falls, ON L2G 3V9 brasaniagara.com | +1 905 353 7187 | Complimentary parking for our dining guests.


Best View of the Falls Illumination Every Evening


Four-Course Dinner





BUFFET BREAKFAST | SEASONAL HOURS Located in Hilton Niagara Falls/Fallsview Hotel & Suites directly across from Fallsview Casino Resort 6361 Fallsview Blvd, Niagara Falls, ON L2G 3V9

+1 905 353 7138 watermarkrestaurant.com |


Complimentary parking for our dining guests. * Prices subject to change. Prices do not include taxes and fees


GET RECOGNIZED Reach tourists and locals all in one place.




Daniel A. Pasco Rebecca Farthing, Katelyn Lococo, Tracey Parkes, Michael Speck David Mace Martine Mackenzie Darryl Grossi


Melissa Browne


Melissa Campo




Emma Cavanagh, Katie Miller Emma Cavanagh, Lauren Charley, Victoria Gilbert, Andrew Hind, Martine Mackenzie, Jill Tham, Gabrielle Tieman-Lee, Sherman Zavitz

Emma Cavanagh, David Haskell 905.356.7283 or 1.877.888.2825 todaymagazine.ca



Today Magazine





Advertise with us and be where they work, live and play.


AdFuel Media Inc.





Achieving the perfect balance between personal style and being on trend

The faces of one of Niagara's oldest man-made landmarks, the Skylon Tower

on the cover…



An interview with wine connoisseur, Victoria Gilbert

Today Magazine Niagara Edition is published by AdFuel Media Inc. All opinions expressed in Today Magazine Niagara Edition are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of AdFuel Media Inc., its employees or owners. Reasonable care is taken to ensure that the information contained in this magazine is as up-to-date and accurate as possible, as of the time of publication, but no responsibility can be taken by Today Magazine Niagara Edition for any errors, omissions or comments made by writers or interviewees that are contained herein. Furthermore, responsibility for any losses, damages or distress resulting from adherence to any information made available through this magazine is not the responsibility of Today Magazine Niagara Edition. All unsolicited manuscripts and/or photographs submitted are assumed to be intended for publication or republication in whole or in part. The right to alter, edit or refuse photos and/or manuscripts intended for publication is assumed. All unsolicited material submitted to Today Magazine Niagara Edition are submitted at the author’s risk. Manuscripts and or photographs intended to be returned must be accompanied by sufficient postage. Today Magazine Niagara Edition does not assume any responsibility for any claims of our advertisers and reserves the right to refuse any advertising.

LET US HELP PUT YOUR BEST FACE FORWARD To advertise in our next issue or for more information call one of our account executives @ 905.356.7283 or 1.877.888.2825.

TODAY MAGAZINE NIAGARA EDITION IS PUBLISHED QUARTERLY. Cover photo courtesy of Haskell Photography. Photographed at Konzellman Estates Winery.

Open for Lunch, Dinner and Take-out now available.








MASTERS OF FLIP @MastersofFlip

The Canadian duo Kourtney and Dave made their way to Nashville and are flipping houses from flop to masterpiece. If you’re planning a renovation, check out their page for some major inspiration.

Check out our “2019 Home Decor Trends” board on Pinterest to discover fun and unique wedding ideas!

BARBARA C0RCORAN @BarbaraCorcoran

Are you a woman in business? Check out this Shark Tank judge’s Instagram for some business inspo, quotes, and links to her podcast.


This Canadian entrepreneur is an Emmy award winning blogger. Her blog, She Takes on the World, also appeared on the Forbes ‘Top 10 Entreprenurial Sites for Women’ list.


we love



www.spacesbyjacflash.com Spaces by Jacflash is a full-scope luxury firm, offering architectural planning, interior design, and decor. Owner, Jaclyn Genovese, is Toronto bred and encompasses a strong presence for women in business.


Jillian Harris-Canada’s Martha Stewart, has created her own empire; her business is now fully run by Canadian women and focuses heavily on interior design and home renovations. A dive into her blog will leave you feeling whimsical and inspired.

Marigold PR is Canada’s top PR firm for Licensed Producers and National Brands. Did we mention they are female based! Take a look at their blog and read all about what they’ve done for the industry.



Follow us on Issuu or online and get unlimited digital access to our lifestyle magazines and never miss what’s happening in your community!

issuu.com/todaymagazine or todaymagazine.ca



All You Can Eat Beef brisket • Pork ribs • fried Chicken Sliders • Sausage • baked beans Potato Bar • salad bar • corn bread

frontierniagara.com 6519 Stanley Ave, Niagara Falls, ON L2G 7L2

+1 289 296 6367 frontierniagara |



LAUREN CHARLEY Lauren is a Copywriter and Journalist with a passion for travel and sharing stories. Born a tropical baby at heart, Lauren spent a year working for a magazine in the British Virgin Islands after graduating from The University of Western Ontario. Niagara-on-the-Lake will always be her home base, as she continues to allow her vocation to take her on adventures and discover the world.

EMMA CAVANAGH Emma is a strategy driven communications graduate from Brock University with a strong devotion to: brand development, content creation, and online community engagement. Previously working with ELLE Canada, her love for fashion and beauty resonates into her blog and photography, which are her most accomplished hobbies. Emma loves to discover new places, and has lived in both Toronto and Sweden.



Victoria is a print journalist, a documentary filmmaker, a writer of fiction and a lover of adventure. Based in Niagara-on-the-Lake, she spends much of her time wandering the world as a scuba diver, cyclist, skier, thrill seeker and wanderer.

Jill’s passion for writing came after seeing the movie Stand by Me. She prefers listening to Niagara bands to practising her guitar and running the track better than shopping. When Jill is not moonlighting as a freelance writer, she is an Elementary teacher juggling her three children.



Andrew is a freelance writer specializing in travel, history and lifestyle. He has a passion for new adventure and experiences, and also for exploring little known stories. Andrew is never without a book or three in hand and some obscure historical fact at the tip of his tongue. You should follow him @discoveriesAM

A writer for REV publishing for over three years, Gabrielle has written for numerous REV publications including Taste, Shopping & Travel. She is a graduate of the University of Ottawa’s Journalism program and has written for a variety of newspapers including the National Post, Ottawa Citizen and Montreal Gazette.



After retiring from a successful teaching career, Martine is finally realizing her dream of becoming a writer! Her features revolve around lifestyle, food and fashion. She loves to shop and never pays retail for anything. This born New Yorker is a bargain-hunter and thrift store-sourcing expert. Martine loves to cook, and spend time with her husband and two sons.

A retired teacher, Sherman Zavitz has had a fascination with the history of Niagara Falls and area for many years. He has been recognized for his historical expertise by being appointed official historian for both the City of Niagara Falls, Ontario and the Niagara Parks Commission.












Wine connoisseur, Victoria Gilbert, the host of “Flavour Passport Journey”, talks grapes and about how wonderful our local wines really are. Executive Chef, Terry Maniatis and his wife/business partner, Katarina formerly from the landmark, Garrison Subs, are at the helm of the Niagara Region’s newest steakhouse, bearing his name, “Terry’s Cut Steakhouse”. He shares his story and what makes him so passionate. 21 NATURAL WINE – QU’EST-CE-QUE C’EST?

Natural wines are starting to trend here in Niagara, bringing us back to the roots of winemaking. Find out which restaurants and shoppes carry these unique tastes and learn how these wines are made. 24 IN THE PINK

‘Tis always the season for rosé!. This smooth and pretty pink wine is not only for sipping, but it can also be incorporated into many recipes. From baking to freezing, a little rosé can go a long way. 30 SUNDAY'S BEST BRUNCH

It started as a trend, but has managed to become the norm, especially on Sunday. Check out these amazing brunch venues.

Tailored towards connecting tenacious women in business, this energetic one-day event is the business conference re-imagined and re-energized. The Pippa and Peach romper is here and is removing the stress from getting dressed! Meet Owner/Creator/Designer Bronwyn Campbell and find out what inspires her. 48 THE PILLAR OF THE PEN

The Pen Centre Director of Marketing, Helen Edwards gives us a glimpse into what she does day to day to keep The Pen running smoothly for us to enjoy. 50 THE LORD MAYOR OF CANADA’S FRIENDLIEST TOWN

Meet Betty Disero, recently elected Lord Mayor of Niagara-on-the-Lake.


Follow noted historian Sherman Zavitz, as he highlights the lives and endeavours of these women who played an important part in Niagara’s history. 60 THE WOMAN BEHIND THE BENCH

Meet Sarah Casorso, Head Brewer at Bench Brewery, and the only woman holding that title in the local beer industry. 63 NIAGARA SUCCESS STORY

Small businesses are a driving force of employment opportunities in Niagara with women starting or running them. Read how Valerie Fyke made her business dreams come true.

Achieving the perfect balance between personal style and being on trend can be difficult within your home. 2019 is all about this balance with trending furniture choices. 74 RAVENSHEAD HOMES: RENOVATING NIAGARA ONE HOUSE AT A TIME

Ravenshead Homes has been helping homeowners across the Niagara Region create the perfect space to call home for the past 15 years through custom builds and now renovations.


Lighting is not just essential to a residence, but is also a decorative part of the interior design and the trends for 2019 are very exciting. Whether your preferences are fancy chandeliers, or modern sconces, the options are endless. 81 THE NEW KID ON THE BLOCK

New to the Niagara Region, Impero Construction is locallyowned and operated and is quickly taking over Southern Ontario by storm. 82 WAYS TO UTILIZE SMALL SPACES

You don’t have to have a lot of space to decorate your place with style. There are amazing ideas and trends that can help you maximize your small space and make the best of it. 86 EATING & LIVING AL FRESCO

It’s time to start looking at making your outdoor living space into something that all of your neighbours will envy.

96 collectively – that’s how the years add up for these three gentleman who are the faces of one of Niagara’s oldest man-made landmarks, the Skylon Tower. 97 TWO MINUTES IN THE BOX

In a continuation of our series, meet two local hockey legends, who continue to love the game in their own unique ways. 102 MAPLE LEAF PLACE

Visit Maple Leaf Place, the premium outlet for all of your Niagara Falls souvenir needs. This huge retail space is also home to everything imaginable in maple products and First Nations arts and crafts. 104 RADIATING SPRING JOY: DAFFODILS

Daffodils are always a sign of this beautiful season of rebirth and warmer weather to come. 105 PRIMARY CARE NIAGARA

The Town of Fort Erie is the new home of a regional, state-of-the-art, urgent care facility, moving from its original location in Niagara Falls to the Garrison Plaza. 106 FULL OF BOLOGNA

The first in four-part series, globetrotter Christopher Balogh shares his travels through Italy’s Emilia Romagna through tales of historic architecture, food and wine. 112 OUT & ABOUT

Looking for fun in Niagara? Take a look here and you’re sure to find something interesting to do.


// F O O D & D R I N K




Niagara is famous not only for the mighty cataracts. We are also world-renowned for our wines. Flavour Passport: Journey is the ultimate guide to all of the wineries in the area. This video series features wineries across the Niagara Region, giving audiences the opportunity to experience virtual tours. I recently sat down with host, Victoria Gilbert to talk about the series, Niagara wines, and what inspires her. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 13

Victoria, can you tell me a bit about Flavour Passport and what inspired you to be a part of it?

Which grape do you think is best when it comes to producing ice wine?

Flavour Passport is a series of videos about food and wine in the Niagara Region and we have such a diversity where they are concerned, that we thought it would be a great idea to showcase both restaurants and wineries. Niagara is a very exciting region. We have millions of tourists descending on this region every year to enjoy the natural environment, with the Falls of course, but with the vineyards which have become extremely popular. We get about 3 million tourists a year to Niagara-on-the-Lake where we have some 40 wineries in that small area. Then spreading out, there are at least 20 more in Beamsville and along The Bench. There are even some new wineries opening up right in Niagara Falls. It’s a very exciting time for food and wine!

Now, the best grape for achieving ice wine is the Vidal. It makes an interesting table wine but it makes an even better ice wine because it has a very thick skin which helps it last longer on the vine. The Riesling grape is beautiful because it lends itself so well to ice wine. It’s complex, it’s very floral, with tropical notes and it has the perfect level of acidity which balances the sugar.

What do you want your audience to take away from these segments? I want people to know about what we do here in Niagara. Canadian wines are well-known all over the world, but especially for ice wines. We make the best ice wine in the world. I truly believe that. But we are also making really interesting wines from grapes like hybrids and grapes that do well in our colder climate, like Chardonnay, Riesling. We also make some excellent reds. There is a lot of personal attention that’s paid to our vineyards because we have some challenging growing conditions here. The work that goes into making wines is very intense. It’s very hands-on. There is also some new thinking occurring with organic wines, bio-dynamic wines. There is a lot of experimentation happening. You mention ice wine. What is it about this area that makes it so great for the production of ice wine? Ice wine originated in Germany and Austria because it gets very cold there and we share a similar climate. In fact, we are even colder. The argument has been made that we make the best ice wines in the world because we are able to achieve these freezing cold temperatures that all of us Canadians complain about. (laughs) When it comes to making ice wine, these temperatures are ideal. There are a lot of rules around the making of ice wine which ensure that we have a very high standard. We are not allowed to pick the grapes until it is -8 degrees Celsius. The grapes are very frozen which gives a minimum yield. A regularly harvested grape, in September or October, when crushed will give 100 percent of the juice. A frozen grape will only give 10 percent of the yield when it is crushed. Ice wine is referred to as “liquid gold” because it is very, very precious. This is also why ice wine is so expensive. It’s very hard to produce. Imagine these grapes, hanging on the vines for three months longer than the regular harvest. The skies are black with starlings because these birds are hungry. The grapes have to be protected, so they are wrapped, and bird bangers are installed to frighten them away. Then these grapes are picked by hand. It’s something that is so special for Canadians and the product is beautiful.

There are so many ice wines out there now. How can you tell you’ve got a good ice wine? When you first taste it, it’s sweet and it fills your palette. It overwhelms your mouth and then there is this nice balance of acidity that comes at the end of it which offsets that sweetness. When people say they don’t like ice wine because it’s too sweet, well they probably haven’t tasted the right ice wine. They should keep tasting because there is the right one for everyone out there. Victoria, how do you know so much about wines? I’ve worked in the Niagara wine industry for the past 7 years and before that my father owned a fine-dining restaurant for 35 years. He changed his menu every month and he also changed his wine list. I learned a lot from him. He’s a wine agent now. As a child, I was dragged to countless wine tastings. (laughs) Throughout my career I’ve written about wines, done videos about wines, I worked with the Food Network at one point on a wine series. Wine has always been a big part of my life. Niagara wines are renowned. We are competing on international levels and winning these competitions. What sets us apart from some of the best wines in the world? The terroir, or the land, of every place in the world is unique. The Canadian terroir is very different, especially here in the Niagara Region because of the escarpment. There is a wave of air that washes over our vineyards which makes sure that our grapes mature in a beautiful fashion. Our grapes taste so good because we have the right environment and we have learned how to use it to our advantage. Canadians are known for being tough and hearty people (laughs) because we live in a very cold place. When it comes to making wine, we are very clever, we are risk-takers because we never know how long our growing season will be or what Mother Nature will dish out. Our winemakers and the people that work in this industry are a testament to that heartiness. We don’t give up; we stick to it; we do what we have to do. Outside of the Niagara Region, in Prince Edward County, they will bury their vines to protect the grapes in the winter so that the vines themselves don’t die. We go all out to make sure that we have a beautiful product and it shows. That’s why we are winning a lot of awards. There is so much young talent and I love interviewing people coming up with new ideas.



Let’s talk reds and whites. What are some of the best reds and whites that Niagara has to offer? That’s a tricky question. My personal favorite for this region would definitely be white ice wine, Vidal or Riesling. With table wine, I love a Riesling. We grow many different varieties of Riesling grapes so there are unique tastes. When it comes to reds, I like Cabernet Franc. It’s complex, it has depth and it ages beautifully. We make great wines that we can drink now, but that also can be lain down for many years to come. In a wine region, if you can do that, you’ve made it, you’ve gone to your peak, and now you can go past it. We aren’t competing on the world stage as much anymore. We are getting to the point where Canadians are being recognized for making good wine. Photos courtesy of Haskell Photography. Photographed at Konzellman Estates Winery.

How do you prepare yourself to film a segment? I do a lot of research. I like to read about the people I’m interviewing – find out what they did in the past, what they’re doing now, where they are headed in the future. You can talk to anyone in this region and they are always coming up with something new. I like to find out what’s happening. Victoria, you’ve been a pleasure to talk to. What is it that truly inspires you, that makes you want to get up in the morning and take on the day with all of the beauty and grace that you’ve shown today? Thank you! That’s so sweet! I’m generally a happy person and I love life! I’m originally from Toronto and I’ve been living here for quite a while. I love the nature and history of this area and there is always so much going on. It’s not hard to wake up and start a new day. TM TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 15

// O N T H E T A B L E

a n i r a t a K & y r Ter s i t a i n Ma A CHAT WITH


Terry's Cut Steakhouse By Martine Mackenzie

Who doesn’t love a really great steak, hand-cut to your specifications, and wood-charcoal grilled? Look no further than “Terry’s Cut Steakhouse”, the brainchild of Terry Maniatis and his wife and business partner, Katarina, formerly from the famous Garrison’s Subs. After almost 3 decades of creating gyros and steak sub masterpieces, they have branched out and brought to us Niagara’s newest and trendiest restaurant at 300 Fourth Avenue in St. Catharines. Tell me a bit about your background and why you became a chef? Terry: Well, I come from a Greek background, and we love food. I just really enjoy being in the kitchen. I don’t have any formal training. I’ve just always been around food. What is your favorite thing about being a chef? Terry: Creating! I love the BBQ! I want to feed people. I want to see and feel the love. Katarina: He loves people’s reactions to his food. If you could give people 3 cooking tips for making a great steak, what would they be? Terry: You have to have a good fire. You need a good base – a good piece of meat. Keep it simple. No crazy spices. Just salt and pepper.

Do you have a favorite ingredient to work with? We’re Greek so it’s all about the garlic, oregano and thyme. I like working with lemon too. In Greece, they grow spices and just go pick them fresh in their backyards. What would you say is one of the most challenging ingredients to work with? Terry: Flour! I don’t bake! I can’t work with dough! (pointing to Katarina) She does. Katarina: He doesn’t like baking at all. He doesn’t even like desserts! When it’s your day off, and you go out to eat, where do you like to go? Terry: Steak! I go looking for a steakhouse. How do you like your steak and what’s your favorite cut? Terry: It’s gotta be medium-rare. And I like a big cut. Ribeye is my favorite but I also really like NY strip. What city in the world would you say has the best food? Terry: New York City! That’s where you find the best meats!

If you weren’t a chef, what would you do for a living? Terry: I can’t think of anything else I would want to be. I love the kitchen -- from the time I was little. From the age of 12, I worked in the kitchen. I come from a family of restaurateurs. I’ve only ever had this one job. We had Garrison’s for 27 years until we just recently sold our Niagara Falls location. I needed a change. I want a nice restaurant and a nice kitchen. I want to create a modern restaurant. Katarina: Our restaurant is very open and bright. Do you have an embarrassing cooking moment? Terry: I’ve over-spiced. I’ve over-cooked and under-cooked. (laughs) It still happens! What excites you in the world of food these days? Terry: I like the freshness of ingredients. And the fact that homecooked food is becoming high end. Even a pot of beans can be considered high end when it’s done properly. Food should be clean. Everything I cook is fresh. And here in Niagara, it’s easy to get fresh all of the time. Do you have a cooking pet peeve? Terry: My kitchen has to be spotless and I like all of my stuff in the same place. Katarina: You can see into our kitchen. It’s open-concept. We want people to see. What would you say is your favourite thing about being a chef in Niagara? Terry: The people. It has to be the people. They appreciate good quality and good quantity. And they say thank you. Katarina: With Terry you always get what you pay for. How do you stay relevant in the culinary world? Terry: I go on-line a lot and search – YouTube to see how things are made. I stick to what I like and learn how to make it better. Katarina: He likes simplicity. And he likes Mediterranean cooking. It’s simple, fresh and delicious. How would you describe a day working in your kitchen? Terry: It’s a routine. Go prep in the morning and get everything ready and when the time comes, you’re ready to go. What are your guilty pleasures food-wise? Katarina: He likes popcorn! (laughs) Terry: I like savoury. I’d rather have an extra meal than dessert. What would you request for your last supper ever? Terry: (laughs) Steak! A big chunk of steak! Medium-rare! Katarina: Terry likes the big cuts. That’s why he is butchering everything on site. He’s giving you the big cuts. Terry: We have something for everyone, all the way from 6 ounce steaks to 30 ounce steaks. If you want bigger, I’ll cut it bigger! We use nothing but the best -- certified Angus. You come and I’ll cook you the best steak ever! Photo courtesy of Emma Cavanagh.

Terry and Katarina, I think I will take you up on that offer! TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 19

ig h tl L ive E n te rt a in m e n t N N ia g a ra ’s L a rg e st T V


on O p e n D a il y Fro m N o

spycelounge.ca |


Located in Hilton Niagara Falls/Fallsview Hotel & Suites directly across from Fallsview Casino Resort 6361 Fallsview Blvd, Niagara Falls, ON L2G 3V9 Complimentary parking for our dining guests.

Natural Wine

Qu’est que c’est? By Victoria Gilbert

Can tasting a wine change your life? Maybe, maybe not, but it can certainly set your mind on a new course. Wine is like music: we have our favourite bands, our beloved artists who move us or make us dance; as we have our favourite wines we gravitate to. Then one day, a piece of music plays that you’ve never heard, and you stop, captivated by the beauty of it. You’ve found a new sound to thrill you, to make you feel different. Natural wine is different. It’s made with little to nothing added from the vineyard to the bottle. These are wines created without chemical intervention and with minimum manipulation. From growing to bottling, there is as little intervention from the winemaker as possible. Grape growing and winemaking is precise, conscientious labor, and it is particularly so in natural wine. Natural wines started 70 years ago in the

Beaujolais region with French winemaker and chemist Jules Chauvet, who stopped adding sulphur to wine and embraced fermentation with indigenous yeasts. Interest in natural wine grew in France and slowly made its way to Canada. “We’re going back to the roots of winemaking,” says Andrzej Lipinski, owner and winemaker at Big Head wines in Niagara-on-The-Lake. “We do not want to interfere with mother nature,” says Lipinski who makes his wines without adding yeast during the fermentation process, a method few local wineries take. “With added yeast we are changing the profile, we are changing the flavours of that wine,” he says. The Polishborn winemaker recently launched a line of wines called “RAW” which never touches oak. Instead Lipinski uses concrete tanks and, in the future, massive orange terracotta TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 21

Top left, bottom right: Treadwell Restaurant. Top right: Andrzej Lipinski, Head of winemaking at Big Head. Photos courtesy of Victoria Gilbert.

pots which he recently acquired for the RAW series. natural wines, making them trickier to find. The LCBO often “With these wines, we just want to show the fruit.” rejects natural wines because they don’t meet certain requirements The fruit is the star of his RAW wines. Maybe it’s because so heading to a winery or a restaurant with a solid local wine list is Lipinski vibrates with energy or maybe it’s the passion he exudes the best way to discover your favourite bottle. which transcends into the glass, but these RAW wines certainly Just as our interest in more “naturally” produced food continues, make a drinker think. natural wines have been gaining popularity in Canada’s restaurant “We are influenced by lots of companies. Everybody wants to scene. make money. You have a chemical company, they want to sell you “Natural wine is a great portrait of what happened in the vineyard all those chemicals to spray on the grapes,” says Lipinski with a in that vintage,” says James Peden, Head Sommelier at Treadwell note of anger. He likens grapes to people. “You go to a doctor, they Restaurant in Niagara-On-The-Lake although he is “not a huge want to sell you all those tablets, the medicine you have to take, fan of the term ‘natural wine’.” they aren’t really helping you. We get used to those drugs, the vines “Some people shout from the rooftops that they are this or that get used to them too. The vines will protect themselves if you don’t but you have to know who the producer is and what they value and give them as much; their immune system will be stronger.” the kind of viticulture they practice.” In 2005, The New York Times Finding all that out by the label wrote natural wine making was alone is not possible and so Peden “almost a secret world, a shadow encourages people to ask questions. wine industry … catering to a tiny “We have tourists coming from all Top Ontario wineries with but fervent band of consumers.” That over the world in to our wine country natural wines to try now: notion is changing as people become asking ‘what are your wines all about?’ interested in the details behind the We’re not going to pour them a wine Pearl Morissette, Beamsville, ON wines they consume. that is going to taste the same every Big Head, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON “I’m drinking my own wines, why single year, like those huge 100,000 Tawse, Vineland, ON would I want to put all that garbage case productions of generic wine. The in there? All those chemicals?” says less you intervene in the winemaking Lipinski. process, the more I feel the wine can Manuel Gonzalez, sommelier at Big Head sees “natty” wines reflect where it came from and that’s a big selling point for our (slang in the industry for natural wines) as a relief. “We’ve been guests.” bombarded with these commercial wines,” he says as he pours an Pairing food with natty wines follows the same reasoning as all unbelievably aromatic 2017 “RAW” Pinot Noir. “These wines show food and wine pairing: “Certain foods go well with certain styles an incredible potential and pleasure - they are super complex, they of wines,” says Peden. “Our wines need to reflect the change of are very pleasant to drink, and they don’t have any of that heaviness seasons. If I need to draw on a natural style Pinot Noir, so be it, I or feel manipulated with a ton of oak or acid - we see these wines will. The creativity that comes out of the kitchen is never ending so as wow! This is refreshing.” the more of a diverse portfolio of each varietal we have is crucial.” Although a natural wine is organic and sometimes biodynamic, Be it for taste or be it for health, natural wines are different and not all organic and biodynamic wines are always natural. Unlike are as exciting as discovering not just a new song, but a new genre organic wines which have been certified by a licensed third-party of music. Santé. TM organization and have been grown, harvested and processed according to set standards, there is no official classification for

Authentic WOOD FIRE PIZZA & GRILL – from start to finish –

COCO’S STEAKHOUSE @ H OLIDAY I N N BY T HE FA LL S 5339 Murray St • Across from Fallsview Casino • 905.356.1333

Pink In the

By Gabrielle Tieman-Lee

‘Tis every season for rosé! It’s refreshing, mildly sweet and pairs with so many dishes in any season.

But if you thought the only way to enjoy rosé was out of a glass, think again. Pick up your go-to bottle of chilled Niagara rosé and try one of these clever cocktails or bubbly sweet desserts that make use of your favorite pink ingredient.

Rosé popsicles Who doesn’t love a Popsicle? After a hot day outside, nothing can quite cool you down like an icy pop of fruit. But these are not your kids' popsicles: slightly effervescent with a punch of spirited wine, these will cool you down and chill you out simultaneously.

Ingredients 2 cups rosé wine (for this recipe, use a floral and fruity rosé like Megalomaniac’s Pink Slip) ½ cup water ½ cup sugar 1 tsp orange zest 2 tsp Spirits (for an extra pop of rose, use Wayne Gretzky Estates Rose Artisanal Spirited Wine) Fresh fruit (strawberries, raspberries, lemon, watermelon, etc.) Combine water and sugar in a small sauce pot, bring to a boil. Remove from heat and let cool. Combine rosé, sugar-water mixture, orange zest and Spirits in a medium bowl. Place fruit into Popsicle molds and then pour the rosé mixture on top. Insert the Popsicle sticks and freeze overnight or until fairly solid. Any way you cook it up, rosé is the way!

Rosé Jelly

Add a little blush to your charcuterie boards this spring: rosé jelly is the condiment for adults. This simple recipe transforms your wine into a subtly-sweet, jelly-esque spread. It’s the ultimate compliment to wine and cheese night with friends.

Ingredients 4 cups rosé wine (for this recipe, use a sweet and fruity rosé like Trius Rosé) ¾ cup fresh lemon juice

Frosé Hybrid cocktails continue to be all the rage in 2019. Embrace the trend by combining the icy-sweet slushies from childhood with your favourite rosé of today. This blended frozen cocktail is the perfect beverage for the first hot day of the season where a chilled bottle just does not quite cut that heat. (The best part: this Frosé can be made a week ahead! But who will actually leave this in their freezer that long!)

1 package (2 oz) dry pectin 5 cups white sugar Combine rosé, lemon juice and pectin in a large saucepot. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Return to a boil and boil hard for one minute, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Remove foam from top if necessary. Ladle hot jelly into hot, sterilized jars, leaving ½ inch air space. Tighten lid and process for 5 minutes in boiling water bath.

Ingredients 1 bottle rosé (for this recipe, use a bold flavoured bottle like De Simone Vineyards Vidal Rosé) ½ cup sugar 8 oz strawberries, hulled and quartered 2 ½ oz fresh lemon juice Pour rosé into a pan and freeze until almost solid (it won’t completely solidify due to the alcohol). This takes approximately five hours. Bring sugar and half cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan; cook, stirring constantly, until sugar dissolves. Add strawberries, remove from heat and rest for 30 minutes to infuse syrup with strawberry flavor. Strain into a small bowl then cover and chill until cold – about 30 minutes. Scrape rosé into a blender. Add lemon juice, 3½ ounces strawberry syrup and one cup crushed ice and purée until smooth. Transfer mixture to freezer and leave until Frosé is thickened (aim for milkshake consistency); this will take approximately 25–35 minutes. Blend again until Frosé is slushy. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 25

Rosé Raspberry Cupcakes This is the sweetest dessert for a bridal or baby shower or simply to have on any sunny day. The Rosé Raspberry Cupcake is an innovative twist on the ordinary summer treat; the vanilla cake base has rosé baked into it for a subtle hint of wine and the wine-infused buttercream frosting amps it up and brings both flavors to life.

Additional raspberries, for garnish

Ingredients (Recipe from CompletelyDelicious.com)

In separate bowl, combine eggs, egg yolk, rosé wine and almond extract. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add dry ingredients to mixer in three additions, alternating with egg mixture, stirring to combine after each addition. Beat briefly until smooth.

Cupcakes: ½ cup rosé wine (for this recipe, use a dry and tangy blend like Thirty Bench Small Lot Rosé) ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature 1 cup granulated sugar 2 large eggs + 1 large egg yolk ½ tsp almond extract 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp baking powder ¼ tsp salt

Buttercream Frosting: 1 cup rosé wine (use the same rosé as for the batter) 1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen 4 cups powdered sugar, sifted 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature Pinch salt

Preheat oven to 350°F and line a muffin tin with cupcake papers. In a mixer, beat butter and sugar together on medium high speed until light and creamy, about three minutes.

Scoop batter into the prepared muffin pan, filling each cup only 2/3 full. Bake until cupcakes just begin to turn golden about 15-18 minutes. Let cool completely. For buttercream, combine raspberries and rosé wine in small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to boil and simmer for 30 minutes or until reduced and thickened to about 1/4 cup. Pass through mesh strainer to remove raspberry seeds and let cool completely. Combine butter, sifted powdered sugar, salt and reduced raspberry rosé mixture and mix until combined. Increase speed to medium high and beat until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Frost cupcakes as desired and garnish. TM

Just A CookingUnique Dining Experience Awaits Font “Just Cooking”-Jennifer Lynne “Rustic Italian”-Eras Light ITC

Rustic Italian C-100 M-100 Y-100 K-100

Rustic Italian

C-14 M-100 Y-100 K-5

Gold Foil

Classic Italian foods made in-house from the freshest ingredients.

Catering Available

3457 King Street, Vineland, ON • 905-562-3222 justcooking.ca

VIRSA FINE INDIAN CUISINE Extensive Vegetarian Selections Available Visit Us for an Exceptional Fine Dining Experience Close to most hotels Our Banquet Hall Accommodates 80 – 100 Guests Eat In | Take Out Free Parking on Ellen St. Opposite Falls Family Lodge Mon. – Thurs. • 11:00 am – 11:30 pm Fri. – Sun. • 11:00 am – 12:00 am 5677 Victoria Ave., Niagara Falls, ON 289-296-5001 • virsanf.com






The Kasbah Mediterranean is a local restaurant featuring homemade, farm-to-table Mediterranean delights from Greece, Lebanon, Armenia and Italy. All menus offer many vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. Come try some of our specialties such as Armenian sausage, Souvlaki, Sizzling Shrimp and Gnocchi. Perfect for families, couples, and private dining/banquets (groups).

6130 Dunn Street, Niagara Falls, Canada 905-357-1000 • thekasbah.ca

Take-Out and Delivery

A wine tasting experience like no other! The combination of our unique cellar floor experience, state of the art winemaking facility; plus a brand new tasting center makes us a must visit destination in Niagara. Our “one of a kind” winery produces some of the most popular VQA wines in Ontario!

Mention this ad and receive a complimentary Cellar Floor Experience Tour & Tasting for 2! Reservations Required. $20 value. (Daily 10:30am, 12pm, 2pm, 5pm)

1067 Niagara Stone Road, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON

LakeviewWineCo.com 905.685.5673




Photos courtesy of Emma Cavanagh (1,4,7), @Bellonthelake (2), 4the6toronto (3), Vintage Hotels (5), & Niagara Toronto Eats (6)



Brunch By Emma Cavanagh

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but we have other things in mind. Gone are the days of getting up early on weekends to indulge in thick buttered toast and home fries, for the same price as a Starbucks latte. The modern gluttons now spend Sunday morning in bed, scrolling through their phones to find the best brunch spot in town. So go ahead, stay in bed a little longer while we do the work for you. Nestled within historic Port Dalhousie lies a hidden secret best suited for rustic lovers, who enjoy an authentic bistro and brewery experience. German inspired bistro Kaiser Haus is home to decadent fares such as pork schnitzel, avocado toast with bacon, and German oven pancakes- think crepe style pancake topped with fresh sweet cream and berries. Best part — you can accompany your meal with German style beer brewed in house at Lock Street Brewing Company — is there anything better? Marcus Samuelsson, an Ethiopian and Swedish chef said, “For me, brunch is such a versatile meal since you can play on both the sweet and savory in your dishes”. We couldn’t have said it better ourselves Marcus. That’s why Revalee brunch café is next on the list. Made for locals, this quaint spot in Vineland offers everything from sweet honeycrisp French toast, to the




coveted savoury dish huevos rancheros. What makes Revalee even more desirable are the local coffee offerings from Pilot Coffee Roasters, The Bagel Oven, and a full vegan brunch menu. It’s all about inclusivity here. If you consider brunch a fancy occasion, Cannery, located at Queen’s Landing in Niagara-on-the-Lake boasts an elegant atmosphere, a primed and well-selected menu, and a fantastic reason to treat yourself. Tuscan offerings such as applewood smoked bacon, domestic cheeses, and a carving station provide a luxury experience as freshly baked dough from Chef Mark Longster’s brick oven fills the air in Niagara’s most sought after Inn. Now, picture a relaxed space, comprised of old world charm and fully equipped with rugged stone, warm wood throughout, and velvet seating that will make you feel right at home. This is the kind of dining experience provided at Scratch Kitchen, located at the Flour Mill Restaurant in Niagara Falls. Scratch Kitchen is a made to order kitchen using fresh, organic, and local ingredients produced by the restaurant’s favourite farmers and artisanal producers. Located inside the Old Stone Inn, the brunch menu offers modern dishes such as Atlantic lobster poutine, welsh rarebit, and duck confit cassoulet. Go ahead-indulge!


What about a dish that’s salty and fresh? Head over to Tide and Vine’s Niagara Falls flagship location, and Niagara’s only oyster house, for freshly shucked oysters straight from the ice bed. With daily po-boy features, amazing Caesars, lobster, and poached Eggs Benny delicious enough to convert a non-seafood lover into one, you’re guaranteed a truly local experience with flavours unlike anywhere else in the region. To top it off, the number of awards allocated to Tide and Vine is proof they have successfully brought the sea to Niagara. Who wouldn’t want fresh crab in their Caesar, or local craft beer after a Saturday night out? Brunch may be a small story in how North Americans are not only eating, but how our weekends have shifted from running errands and spending time with family, to looking for the next hot spot place to eat. This is likely a result of demographics; leave it to millennials to turn a meal in between breakfast and lunch into something trendy. Regardless, brunch is a metaphor for self-care in an age of consistent busyness. So put on your favourite Sunday outfit, swipe a sheer gloss over your lips or gel in your hair, and head out for bottomless mimosas and truffle oil Eggs Benedict. Whatever your preference, these notable restaurants are guaranteed to make Sunday afternoon your favourite time of the week. TM


special advertising feature



In Good Taste showcases a variety of Niagara’s most melt in your mouth, showstopping, foot stomping, lick your lips, delectable dishes and while it can be hard to choose where to engage your taste buds first, we hope this guide gives you a good head start.



242 Mary Street, Niagara-on-the-Lake 289.272.1242 backhouse.xyz

6689 Lundy’s Lane, Niagara Falls (Right next to The Beer Store) 905.358.9744 blindpigniagara.com

One of Canada’s best restaurants. Backhouse offers a continuously evolving menu with a commitment to integrated cool climate cuisine and enlightened hospitality. Boasting a finely curated local and international wine list dedicated to low intervention winemaking, craft cocktails, and tasting menus, guests are assured to have one of their best dining experiences.

Where the locals eat! The Blind Pig is a speakeasy inspired gastro pub with socializing in mind. Pulling subtle design inspirations from the 1920’s, we’re also built for the modern times with a diverse menu, hand crafted cocktails, free WIFI and USB charge ports. Our signature dishes include Bourbon Glazed Pork Bell, KFC (Korean Fried Chicken), Boneless Short Ribs, and much more…


6361 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.353.7187 brasaniagara.com

Nestled inside the Hilton Niagara Falls/ Fallsview Hotel and Suites, Brasa showcases the flavours and cultural flair of Brazil. Following a centuries-old tradition of cooking on an open fire, diners can experience endless cuts of succulent beef, pork, lamb, and chicken carved tableside in the style of authentic Brazilian gauchos.





6039 Fallsview Blvd., Niagara Falls 905.353.4111 buchanansniagara.ca

3 Race Street, St. Catharines 905.641.5009 caffegatti.com

6423 Lundy’s Lane, Niagara Falls 905.358.6964 charmsjerkhut.ca

A blend of modern steakhouse and chic lounge, this home-grown restaurant offers an appealing selection of hand-cut steaks charbroiled to your liking, tasty seafood, pasta, fresh salads, vegan and more. Lunch $14-16, Dinner $1838. Happy hour daily 2-6 pm: VQA wine or craft brew with appetizer $15. Complimentary parking. Event space for up to 250 guests.

Serving up smiles with artisan Roman style pizza, salads, soups, gourmet sandwiches and fresh Italian cakes, pastries and gelato. Choose from freshly brewed, locally roasted coffee, espresso, cappuccino, lattes, and organic teas to local/imported beer or wines. Serving all day breakfast and lunch, Caffe Gatti caters in house or to your next event!

Charm’s Jerk Hut brings the mouth-watering taste of the Caribbean to Niagara Falls. Experience the taste of Jamaican jerk cooking, with fresh ingredients and flavourful spices. Try classic Island dishes like our Jerk Chicken Leg Dinner, the classic Ackee & Saltfish, or the Jerk Pork Roti. Come and experience great Jamaican cuisine at our new location on Lundy’s Lane and taste the difference.




5339 Murray Street, Niagara Falls 905.356.1333 ext. 171 cocosniagarafalls.com

Guests of Coco’s rave about our famous wood-fired steaks and gourmet pizzas. Enjoy the awesome ambiance under the starlit Niagara skies as we offer nightly entertainment on the Terrace from 7pm onwards (in season only). We also offer ample free parking for all our guests! Next time you’re in Niagara Falls, visit Coco’s and enjoy good times and great food.

6400 Lundy’s Lane, Niagara Falls 905.374.0021 docmagilligans.com

6519 Stanley Avenue, Niagara Falls 289.296.6367 frontierniagara.com

Nominee for North America’s Best Irish Pubs and winner of the Best Irish Pub Chef, North America (2017) by Irish Pub’s Global. Stunningly-accurate design, great food, drink, music and, most of all, people. Guests are immersed in a world of warmth, conversation, laughter and fun. What the Irish call ‘the craic’... Comfort food at its best, using heritage Irish recipes.

There’s something for everyone at Niagara’s only all-you-can-eat Southern style BBQ buffet. Enjoy house-seasoned smoked meats and signature brisket direct from the grill; plus over 50 hot and cold seasonal items including the ultimate potato bar with five types of potatoes and over 20 topping choices.





4600 Victoria Avenue, Vineland 289.567.0487 grandoakculinary.ca

1607 8th Avenue Louth, St. Catharines 905.684.3300 hernder.com

5458 Victoria Avenue, Niagara Falls 905.356.3866 italianicecream.ca

IT’S ALL GOOD! Easy access from the QEW. Fresh-baked wares & locally sourced produce. Elegant Post and Beam design. A favourite with locals and visitors alike. A relaxing place to enjoy lunch, coffee or a snack. Enjoy our fantastic selections at the Cheese Bar and Salad Bar - perfect for light lunches or a spur-of-the-moment picnic. Open 9 am to 6 pm. Closed Sundays.

Hernder Estate Wines is open 7 days a week, year round for complimentary tastings and weekend tours at 1pm. 30 VQA wines, fruit wines and icewines. Licensed patio, wine boutique and two floors of rustic beauty for weddings, private parties and dinners. Our Niagara Vinegar section includes grapeseed oil, vinegars, reductions, hot sauces and homemade jellies.

We have been producing our own gelato since the day we opened and never stopped improving the quality or variety of our flavours. We offer 24 flavours of milk base and water base gelato. Try our espresso, teas, panini, desserts and imported drinks. We are fully licensed and have a beautiful patio to enjoy your treats on.




Lundy’s Lane, NF / Merritt St., SC johnnyroccos.com

3457 King Street, Vineland 905.562.3222 justcooking.ca

6130 Dunn Street, Niagara Falls 905.357.1000 thekasbah.ca

Savour the flavours of Italy! From our succulent hand rolled Zia’s Rice Balls, to our hand tossed pizza dough, cooked to perfection in our 600 degree wood fired oven. Pair our traditional dishes with our vast array of Italian & local wines. At Johnny Rocco’s gli amici sono la famiglia — Our friends are all family!

Enjoy our rustic approach to classic Italian foods. Everything made in-house. No processed foods — ever. Relax in our quaint, friendly unpretentious space. Enjoy the best of local Niagara wines. When the weather’s good, take in the sun on our spacious, welcoming patio. And, for anyone planning a special event, we’d love to cater it for you.

The Kasbah Mediterranean features the incredible cuisine of Vaughan Bulganian. Farm to table Mediterranean delights from Greece, Lebanon, Armenia & more. All menus include vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options. The Kasbah is fully licensed with a total of 230 seats (patio, party room, dining, bar & lounge). Join us for an incredible evening with amazing food, service, wine and Mediterranean music.





6700 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.374.5170 fallsviewrestaurant.com

161 Church Street, St. Catharines 289.362.2288 langrestaurant.com

253 Taylor Road, Niagara-on-the-Lake 905.688.2550 ext. 5248 whiteoaksresort.com

Dine overlooking Niagara Falls in The Keg Steakhouse + Bar, located on the 9th floor of the Embassy Suites Niagara Falls. This landmark location offers guests floor-to-ceiling panoramic views of the famous Falls and the highest quality steaks and seafood for a dining experience to remember.

Canada’s 1st All You Can Eat Vietnamese BBQ & Hot Pot.

LIV Restaurant is the signature restaurant for White Oaks Resort and offers a fantastic dining experience. The menu is sublime, the wine list award winning and ambiance beautiful. LIV is where you want to celebrate special moments and treat yourself to a night of fine dining, fabulous wine and conversation.



7600 Lundy’s Lane, Niagara Falls 905.357.6543 mickandangelos.com

4740 Valley Way, Niagara Falls 289.296.8858 mooseandpepper.com

6361 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.353.7174 pranzoniagara.com

At the Moose and Pepper we want you to relax, sip some wine or a craft beer and enjoy our fare. Come for dinner and let the candlelight and jazz be your escape. An ensemble of flavours awaits you between the pages of our menu, sure to satisfy the most discerning taste buds. Whatever you choose on your journey with us, be assured we want you to be as pleased with your selections as we are preparing them.

Located in the Hilton Niagara Falls/ Fallsview Hotel & Suites and in the center of the Niagara Falls Entertainment District, Pranzo Ristorante Italiano offers flavourful, hand-crafted favourites prepared to order in a lively open display kitchen. Be sure to try our signature brick oven pizzas and authentic Italian cuisine in a warm, inviting atmosphere. Children eat free with the purchase of any adult meal.

Rediscover Mick & Angelo’s!! Whether you are looking for a great meal, a place to watch the big game or booking a function... look no further. Mick’s boasts a large bar with numerous TV’s, an updated dining room and 2 function rooms that are ideal to host any event.

In Vietnamese “L`ang” means “Village”. Our spices, flavours and methods of cooking cuisine are unique. Whether you’re barbecuing your meal on a fire or cooking your food in the aromatic broth at your table you’ll get the full Vietnamese experience at L`ang!






1366 York Road, St. Davids 905.262.8463 ravinevineyard.com

6220 Lundy’s Lane, Niagara Falls 905.357.1303 redlobster.ca

Outlet Collection at Niagara, 300 Taylor Road, Unit 807, Niagara-on-the-Lake 905.685.5500 rockychoc.com

At Ravine, our restaurant menus are an everchanging carousel of ingredients from our kitchen garden and farming friends, featuring creations from Chef Matt Payne and our culinary team. Ravine is conveniently located in St. Davids, at the gateway of the Niagara Wine Route just minutes from Niagara Falls. We highly recommend booking reservations before visiting our Winery Restaurant.

Red Lobster is passionate about serving great seafood, which is why we go the extra mile to provide the best dining experience possible for our guests. Every restaurant takes pride in preparing only the highest-quality seafood, while our servers pull out all the stops to make every dining experience special.

Clients and employees alike always appreciate premium-quality, hand-made chocolate - the ideal gift for all occasions. Call us or come in to one of our 3 Niagara locations and let us assist you in putting together your customized gift packages. All confections are made on premises for maximum freshness and flavour.



6455 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.357.1199 ruthschrisniagara.com

The memory of a great meal stays with you long after the table has been cleared. This is why at Ruth’s Chris we thrive on our great food and service. Our menu offers a variety of dining options that will please all of our guests. Inside Ruth’s Chris Steak House you’ll also find Niagara’s hottest bar and lounge. Treat yourself at this high-end lounge with your own private booth surrounding the bar and dance floor and a personal host to cater to your every need.

5827 River Road, Niagara Falls 905.358.4588 secretgardenrestaurant.net

NIAGARA’S BEST KEPT SECRET! For over 20 years, a family owned restaurant in the heart of Niagara Falls. Open daily for breakfast, lunch & dinner including kids, gluten free & vegetarian menus. Huge patio with a great view. Located just across from Niagara Falls. Group rates are available. Visit our Gift Shop for a perfect memento of your trip.

SKYLON TOWER 5200 Robinson Street, Niagara Falls 1.866.393.5612 skylon.com

See it all from high above Niagara Falls at Skylon Tower! The legendary Revolving Dining Room is the city’s only rotating restaurant offering breathtaking views of both the American and Horseshoe Falls. Enjoy the Falls Illumination and seasonal Fireworks display from our Summit Suite Buffet restaurant at 775 feet above the Niagara gorge.





6361 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.354.7887 spycelounge.ca

782 Clare Avenue, Welland 905.714.1117 suesseafood.ca

6700 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.356.8523 tgifniagarafalls.com

Street level and in the heart of Niagara Falls Entertainment District, you will be in the center of the action. Spyce Lounge offers a sophisticated and lavish escape from life’s hustle and bustle with nightly entertainment and a full lounge menu.

Sue’s Seafood is a family owned and operated shop located in Welland, a short 20 minute drive from Niagara Falls or St. Catharines. The store has been here for 11 years now but experience goes back for years. The focus of the business is doing English Style fish and chips and doing it well. Offering haddock from Nova Scotia, halibut from Alaska and Lake Erie Perch when is season. Stop by and check us out.

You’ll come for the food but you’ll stay for the fun! Whether you’re looking to spice up your lunch or seeking big, bold flavours for dinner or late night, your search is over! Come and experience GREAT food with an attitude, from handcrafted appetizers, salads and burgers, to pastas and desserts. Located inside the Embassy Suites Hotel.



6380 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.358.2672 vittoriosniagarafalls.com

6361 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.353.7138 watermarkrestaurant.com

The flavourful aromas of Italian cuisine waft from the open kitchen located at the core of the restaurant. Vittorio’s chefs cook Italian dishes such as breaded veal topped with tomato sauce and char-grilled, New-York style Black Angus striploin steak with potatoes and vegetables. Choose from a wide selection of wines from Europe, Australia, South Africa, and North America. Located in the Fallsview Casino Concourse Level.

As the signature restaurant at the Hilton Niagara Falls/Fallsview Hotel and Suites, The Watermark elevates guests’ dining experiences to new heights with gracious service, inventive cuisine, an extensive wine collection and stylish design that is only surpassed by the stunning floor-to-ceiling views of both the American and Horseshoe Falls.

Winery Tours, Distilleries, Restaurants, Craft Breweries and more...

Download the app & save on your favourite experi ences


IN HERE, IT’S ALWAYS FRIDAY. Located inside the Embassy Suites Hotel 6700 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls, ON

905.356.8523 • tgifniagarafalls.com





Atelier Collective The

The Atelier Collective is redeďŹ ning the business workshop. By Gabrielle Tieman-Lee

// W O M E N I N B U S I N E S S

Photos courtesy of Philosophy Studios


ailored towards connecting tenacious women in business, this energetic one-day event is the business conference re-imagined and re-energized; immersing attendees into an atmosphere of inspirational, like-minded women who all have the same root goals at heart: to learn, connect and grow. Co-founded by friends and entrepreneur/business women Angela (Urquhart) Osborne and Taryn Herritt, the multi-faceted workshop was created with the goal to connect career women and ambitious entrepreneurs, like themselves, in search of the inspiration and comradery needed to grow their individual businesses. “We really felt like there was a gap in the market in terms of some type of professional experience / conference type event where you can go and network and learn from amazing speakers,” says Chief Growth Officer Herritt. “Something that can get you excited and inspired but that is done in a very beautiful way.” Hosted this June 18th, the second annual event will once again celebrate the best in the business and host industry leaders sharing their inspiring stories, valuable advice and tangible strategies. Growing exponentially from their inaugural event in 2018, this year plans to be bigger than ever; expanding to a larger, Insta-worthy venue and hosting more panelists – including 2019’s Keynote Speaker, famed Canadian entrepreneur, TV Host and designer Jillian Harris.


Following a decade of progressively building a strong career in the corporate world, Herritt took the plunge into entrepreneurship; working as a business broker and M&A expert. Herritt said she attended conferences looking for inspiration and consistently found the same event hosted over and over. “The speakers and topics were always the same ... hosted in Conference Room A with white linen table cloths, water on the table … it was all very generic,” said Herritt. “There was just something missing.” The Atelier was curated entirely with the guest experience in mind. Passionate about designing and executing memorable events, published author, entrepreneur and Chief Experience Officer Angela Osborne says they created the Atelier [which translates to workshop] with the main point of mission to remove attendees from the backdrop of traditional conferences and into an environment which fosters the creative commentary and energy of its panelists. “The day isn’t just a work event, it is so much more,” said Osborne. “You are working on yourself, you are working on personal and professional development and you are working on creating relationships. In order to do so, you have to feel inspired.” From a coffee bar set in an air stream trailer, a headshot studio and wine reception in the vineyard, the venue of the inaugural event, Ravine Vineyard, provided a beautiful outdoor backdrop for the over 300 women in attendance.

“We wanted to take people somewhere they could feel inspired,” said Osborne. “There is an energy that is created when you are outdoors or in a beautiful space. It is very important to us that we have that high vibe energy.” With a wait list of hundreds of people clambering for a spot in 2018, it was clear that the event had surpassed the cozy vineyard venue. In a move to expand, the Atelier is relocating and doubling its size for this June. The 2019 event will host over 700 women and be held in Toronto at the green-designed and community-based heritage site Evergreen Brickworks. Designed as a social enterprise that inspires action to enable flourishing cities, the vibrant indoor/ outdoor footprint is a unique labyrinth of green and sustainable space far away from the typical boardroom. Osborne said this incredible space will feature similar engaging popups as the previous year but will allow for everything to be amplified and bigger. Along with the addition of Jillian Harris, founder and Creative Director of Jillian Harris Design Inc. and co-host of HGTV’s Love It or List It Vancouver, this year’s panelists promise to be just as unique and just as inspiring. Each panel will host a small number of speakers at a time to allow each panelist the opportunity to speak and engage with the audience and cover a variety of topics. Herritt said the core components and themes of the panels will remain loosely the same year to year but feature fresh content and adjust with the trends.

We really felt like there was a gap in the market in terms of some type of professional experience/conference type event where you can go and network and learn from amazing speakers.

Past key panel themes include: Grit is the New Hustle, Wellness and Personal Development, Confidence, Evolving Technology, Leveraging Media into Money and Creating and Connecting and Converting; The Value of Your Brand Story. “Something that was an overarching theme for our conference was Grit is the New Hustle,” said Herritt. “A lot of the time you hear buzz words around hustle, like working insane hours – so a mix of what we wanted to get across was no, it’s not just about the hard work and not just about the hustle, but it’s about the tenacity that it takes to build a career, build a brand, build a business.” Past panelists have included the members of Jillian Harris’ Core “Team Jilly”: Shay Merritt, Tori Wesszer, Mindy Crawford and Mackenzie Dempsey, the co-owners of the Insta-famous June Motel [located in Prince Edward County] Sarah Sklash and April Brown, writer Lauren McPhillips, Founder and CEO of Hughes and Co. Allie Hughes and the Director of Communications for ASICS Canada Karen Menez – to name only a few. Osborne said a second Keynote Speaker will be announced in early spring ahead of ticket release. “What we always come back to with every element of the Atelier is this whole concept of women supporting women,” said Herritt.

“I know that [women supporting women] sometimes gets thrown out a lot as almost a sort of buzz word but for us, it is the most important thing; to allow people to climb up to the next level you have to give them the opportunity to network with each other and have learning opportunities and be able to share messages of other women who are doing something that is innovative and taking a risk. We want to be able to spread these messages so that is our core within everything we have done.” Tickets will go on sale in the early spring and will offer two price point options; one for general admission [which will include access to all panels, interactive experiences, happy hour and a swag bag] and new this year is an amplified VIP Experience ticket which will include all general admission items as well as a meet and greet with Jillian Harris, an elevated swag bag and preferred seating. Ticket prices can be found on The Atelier’s website. Looking forward, Osborne and Herritt said though their signature will remain at their core, the pair is looking to expand and host more events. “We are hoping to do one or two a year - spread them out across Canada and beyond the border,” said Herritt. Herritt said they are also looking at creating a tailored workshop series that will be smaller in terms of numbers but offer a very similar experience for a more intimate atmosphere – similar to a “business boot camp”. TM For more information visit and tickets www.theateliercollective.com Photo top right courtesy of Tino Berardi TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 43



It is time for a closet purge! The Pippa and Peach romper is here and is removing the stress from getting dressed! This staple piece is quickly becoming Niagara’s new little black dress. Versatile and comfortable, this sustainable wardrobe musthave is an ideal investment for today’s busy woman. Easily taken from day to night and made complete with your own accessories, the Pippa and Peach romper is the piece you need to eliminate countless wardrobe changes throughout your week. “How many times do women stand in their closet and go through one hundred outfits and are still left feeling disappointed?” says owner, creator and designer of Pippa and Peach, Bronwyn

Peach By Gabrielle Tieman-Lee

Campbell. “What to put on your body should be one less decision you have to make in a day. I want you to put clothes on and feel good about yourself. We work so hard our clothes should work for us,” said Campbell. The Niagara-born company was launched in 2015 in Campbell’s living room – stemming from her desire to create home decor and clothing pieces for her two young girls (nicknamed Pippa and Peach). “This started as a hobby while I was on maternity leave,” said Campbell, who holds a Masters in Social Work. “It was about learning a new skill and having something to do that kept me creative and busy after my kids had gone to bed.”

Campbell said she learned to sew in high school and decided to re-learn the skill by starting with a simple skirt – drafting her own pattern and working with her favourite colours: black and white. “I started making clothes for my own kids because I love black and white and there wasn’t enough black in store for little girls,” said Campbell. Campbell said every time a piece turned out well she would challenge herself to learn a new pattern, always designing items that worked with her life and thinking about what she wanted for herself and her kids. “I love rompers,” said Bronwyn. “I own twenty! They are easy and there is no matching tops and bottoms. You throw it on and you go. But, I have an awkward body, and I will say, the twenty I own none of them fit me right.” The rompers, coined the #KidBoss and #GirlBoss Romper, were inspired by the busy girl on the go. “The idea of this #GirlBoss Romper came about because we are all trying to be our best selves,” said Campbell. “I want it to represent a woman who is trying to live her dream, to empower others. This romper is for everyone; it’s universal. It is for the twenty-year-old who is hustling her ass off, it is for the sixty-yearold woman, the pregnant mom, everyone - it is easy and breezy. “It is this versatile piece that so many women feel confident in ... It is designed to graze over your belly where no one really wants it to cling, flatter your curves and skim over your insecurities,” said Campbell. Proudly Canadian, the romper is made from a blend of Canadian sourced and sustainable cotton, rayon and bamboo – making it lightweight, breathable, durable and anti-microbial. The products are reasonably priced, with kids’ rompers priced at $48 dollars and adults starting at $98 dollars. Styles include a sleeveless, 3/4 length or full length sleeve option and are available in forest green, black, grey and navy. Making its debut for spring 2019 is the addition of a wide leg romper to the collection. All rompers are available in a variety of sizes and include extended cuffs to lengthen the life of your garment and your investment – ideal for growing kids.

Campbell suggests sizing down when ordering for a more every day look. She encourages all customers struggling with sizing to reach out to her and she is happy to personally help with sizing. “If you are going to walk away with my product, I want you to be happy in it and feel like your best self,” said Campbell. “If I can make you feel a little bit better and make your day a little bit easier, that completes my day.” Pippa and Peach is not only dedicated to creating garments that celebrate how amazing you are, but also inspire you on your journey to being your best self. New to the brand in 2019 is the Inspiration Diffusing Label. Made of a specialty designed cork blend, this tiny label attaches at the nape of the neck and allows the wearer to incorporate their favourite essential oils into their clothing and make the scent a part of their daily wellness routine. “It is all about your journey to wellness,” said Campbell. “Scents are uplifting to your spirit. Add a drop of your favourite, inspiring scents onto your hand and rub them directly on to the label so you can carry the therapeutic/aromatic benefits of these oils with you throughout the day.” Apart from rompers, the Pippa and Peach line also includes children’s pants, hats, accessories and cardigans and the popular Scribble Collection: a line of dress-up clothing that is designed to be coloured by your children. “It is their own wearable art,” said Campbell. “The whole Scribble collection was about growing with my own kids and creating clothing that is creative and embraces their imagination. I thought, what if I took this skirt and found a way that it could be coloured so they could create on their clothing.” Each kit comes in a giftable box and contains a garment and three permanent markers, as well as instructions on how to set your coloured design. Campbell said parents can also use Ultra Washable Crayola Markers which will allow for the item to be coloured again and again – whereas the permanent markers allow your little one to create an evolving work of art that can be washed and worn many times over. TM All items can be purchased online through www.pippaandpeach.com Photos courtesy of Pippa and Peach









• Clean, modern facility with top-of-the-line equipment • Friendly and non-judgemental environment • Free Wi-Fi, ample parking and more!



399 Ontario St., St. Catharines 905.988.6160 speer.ca


6595 Drummond Rd., Niagara Falls, ON L2G 4N6 289-296-9535 simplyfithealthclub.com


in a s m all to w

CLOTHING FROM DEX, ELAN, GENTLE FAWN, C’EST MOI, BLACK TAPE & SPANX! Jewellery by Lofttan, Piperwest watches & Bella Buddha Beads. Essential Oils/Diffusers, Quay Sunglasses, Giftware & More. 700 Penner St., Virgil, (inside Penner Building Centre) Tues - Fri: 10am - 5pm • 905-468-3242

Mount Carmel Centre 3770 Montrose Rd., Niagara Falls Phone: 905.356.1641 Fax: 905.356.5300 caswellsclothing.com

Pillar Pen The

of the

Helen Edwards

By Martine Mackenzie

Helen Edwards is definitely the “Pillar of the Pen Centre”. As the Director of Marketing of the million square foot, largest indoor shopping centre in the Niagara Region, she acknowledges that she has a huge responsibility, but a fun one. She glows with true happiness which shows that this lady indeed loves what she does and is genuinely a good soul.

“My main responsibilities are all about advertising and promotion – getting our name out there. The other thing is coordinating with tenants, and really supporting them so that they can reach their goals, increase sales, increase traffic. BUT I’m also heavily drawn towards community involvement. Everyone at Pen Centre really believes in giving back to the community that has supported us so much over the years.” says Helen. Her typical day is not typical at all. Helen manages a great team. She has her hands in a lot of different things, but credits her colleagues with helping her to make the shopping centre shine. “We work as a team. We win as a team. Our success doesn’t come down to one individual or department”, she smiles. With social media so prominent in our lives, Helen and her Marketing Coordinator, Tina, regularly go through theirs to make sure they are hitting all of the right notes on the right platforms. Then it’s about event planning – The Pen Centre is involved in so many events, on-site and off-site. That’s a huge part of Helen’s job, along with coordinating advertising, and sourcing initiatives to help showcase both Pen Centre and its retailers. Helen laughingly adds, “We often have opportunities that just present themselves and sometimes we need to act fast and make quick decisions. It’s sometimes fly by the seat of your pants.” Helen is also charged with something that can be very challenging -- dealing with customer comments and complaints. “Most are very positive”, she says, “but sometimes, there are some that are awkward and difficult. Ultimately, the customer is the reason we’re all here, and our team makes every effort to turn even a negative situation into a mutual success.”

One might think that getting to a position like Director of Marketing would require extensive education, focusing on business. Well, for Helen Edwards, the right attitude, the right opportunities and the right timing all combined to put her exactly where she feels she was meant to be all along. As a trained Early Childhood Educator, Helen graduated at a time where jobs in her chosen field were few. She found herself with a degree and no job. Luckily, her best friend’s father was a doctor who was looking for an office manager. She spent 6 years in this capacity, but also began juggling some medical procedures. After getting the necessary certifications, “I was taking blood, doing vaccinations, ECG’s… The next step was nursing, but I am terrified of hospitals, so that just wasn’t for me.” Still going in a direction which was a far-cry from her ECE and now medical training, Helen came upon an ad for a Marketing Secretary at her local mall. “I spent a lot of my childhood at The Pickering Town Centre. I was very familiar with it!” With only office management qualifications, Helen was blessed to have a “lovely GM who hired me for my personality and took a chance on me,” she says. It’s obvious after just a few minutes of talking with Helen that she would be destined for much bigger things. Through much hard work and dedication, she went on to become Marketing Coordinator, then Marketing Assistant, then Marketing Director, holding her current position with the Pen Centre since 2016. Helen humbly says, “My experience has been on-the-job training. We also have a great resource called ICSC, the International Council of Shopping Centres and they offer courses that are the driving force behind educating people in this

Photo courtesy of Emma Cavanagh

industry. I research the trends and learn everything I can to keep me growing professionally. I have also benefitted greatly from the experience of working with a wonderfully diverse team over the years. I firmly believe that you can learn something from everyone you meet.” Helen is a true testament to what can happen when you are open to taking chances. “I’ve always been a person who says yes to the opportunity. You just never know where it’s going to take you.” But this is definitely not a 9 to 5 job. Helen is a regular speaker at Brock University in their marketing classes. In essence, she is getting her chance in the classroom. “I gave up the teacher dream, but I feel like I still get to do what great teachers do, which is helping people, empowering them and expanding their lives. I’m still effecting change, just in a different capacity.” A career in marketing is ideal for anyone who is a social butterfly as there is a huge social component to the field. In the world of social butterflies, Helen exemplifies the strongest and most confident butterfly ever – the Monarch. She is very determined to use her position as a platform for giving back to the community of Niagara. “Working at Pen Centre, and with this amazing group of individuals, has allowed us to help countless charitable organizations and participate in numerous charitable events.” Helen is inspired by interaction with the Pen Centre team, the tenants, and the amazing Cushman & Wakefield network across Canada. “I get my energy from human contact”, she says. But what really inspires this energetic lady is giving back to the Niagara community. “If I leave this planet tomorrow, I want to know that I helped just a little, to make it a better place. I’m driven by that need," she thoughtfully shares. “We like to focus on empowering women. I ask myself, ‘How can we do more?’ We are privileged to be part of International Women’s Day, Wise Girls Golf Tournament, Women in Business…we do a lot with Gillian’s Place (a shelter for abused women.) Our primary customer is female, so we look for sponsorships and opportunities that can help her live her best life.” One of her favourite events that Pen Centre, and Cushman & Wakefield Asset Services Shopping Centres across Canada

organizes and hosts is the annual Cop Shop which involves what Helen refers to as “our future” – children. Pen Centre partners with the Niagara Regional Police, and with local school boards. One student is nominated per school, who despite certain economic or social challenges, has risen above and made a positive mark in their classroom and school. Forty-seven children in total arrive to the mall by limousine. Once at the Pen, they each receive a $200 shopping gift card and are partnered with ninety-six volunteer police officers who become their personal shoppers for the day. “This event empowers these kids and creates a positive foundation between the police and the child. This event inspires everyone involved.” One common word that comes up in conversations with Helen Edwards is “empowerment.” For her, that word means different things, applies to many situations, and to all people of all ages. Helen’s mantra is all about getting to a place where you feel good in your own skin and not letting society dictate to you what you should be. In her position, Helen has the ability to help make a difference in how we perceive ourselves. She has the capacity to use her job and help us have positive and happy shopping experiences. Helen is the first to acknowledge that shopping is supposed to be fun. She loves shopping herself, but mostly for, “Shoes! It has to be shoes! No matter what size you are, shoes always fit!” she laughs. Helen is able to reach out to individuals who might need that extra little bit of help. She is currently in the midst of working with Pen Centre Security, management and community partners to launch an anti-bullying program at Pen Centre this spring, geared towards showing shoppers of all ages and backgrounds that no matter who you are, what you look like, or what you wear, there is no place for bullying. When asked, what was the best advice she could give to young women getting into the field of marketing, Helen didn’t hesitate at all. “Never forget the power of a smile. Connect with people. Never let policy overpower human decency.” TM



Betty Disero may carry an ostentatious title as the “Lord Mayor” of Niagara-On-The-Lake, a historic town at the mouth of the Niagara River, but the petite woman with darting eyes and not a slip of make-up, is anything but flashy. Six weeks into her new job as Lord Mayor of a town known for its soft fruit agriculture, fine wines, English heritage and a short war with the Americans in 1812, Mrs. Disero has a vision for the scenic town of 18,000 residents. “I’m a practical person, I’m a pragmatist,” says Disero. “I think that’s why I stayed in municipal politics. I have been invited by both the Conservatives and the Liberals at one point in my life to join their parties both federally and provincially, but I like to make decisions that show results and affect people’s lives. I like being close to the people I represent and work with; it’s just been my life,” says the Lord Mayor. If you were walking the pretty streets or taking a horse-drawn carriage ride in the town last fall, you may have seen Mrs. Disero, who knocked on more than 300 doors a day in the months preceding the municipal election last October. She has been called “a fixer” all her life. Disero was a city councillor in Toronto for 18 years where she represented 56,000 people in her ward. Shortly after moving to Niagara-On-The-Lake she ran and won as a city councillor in 2016. When asked about Niagara-On-The-Lake compared Photo courtesy of Victoria Gilbert

Why does Niagara-On-The-Lake have a “Lord Mayor”? Joy Ormsby, the Niagara-On-The-Lake historian, reports the following: In 1921, the mayor of Niagara-on-the-Lake went on a trip to England and came back with the notion he should be known as the “Lord Mayor”. He went to Toronto, had a medallion made and began wearing it to meetings and signing his correspondence as Lord Mayor, Niagaraon-the-Lake. The mayors thereafter followed suit and in 1969, when the Town and Township were united, it was written into the provincial Municipal Act that the head of government be known as Lord Mayor.

to Toronto, the Lord Mayor speaks with enthusiasm. “The diversity of issues is greater here. I’ve spent the last four years learning about that diversity. There’s a growing farming population, so the issues coming out of that, the irrigation system, the drainage systems, all of that was new to me. I spent the last four years learning and observing.” A passionate advocate for a ‘town with a plan’, Disero is focused on setting down on paper an official vision for the future of the increasingly popular town. “Through our official plan we determine where we want that growth to go, we determine services, we determine lifestyle, everything from healthcare to daycare. So the province and the region are working with numbers for 2041 and our official plan is out of date. It’s from 1994, a developer comes in and says ‘hey, I just found a nice big greenspace that I can put you know, 300 homes.’ It may not be where we want it.” The town is flanked by wide green spaces planted with fruit trees, vineyards, as well as natural forests, and escarpments. Some of these spaces are protected and some are not. Where homes are built is a hot topic locally and is the heart of why Disero says she ran for mayor. “A developer went in and literally pulled the trees out by the roots. There was clear cutting going on, so I thought at that point, ‘no, no, I cannot get council to go ahead with this.’ Instead of just whining, the solution for me was, I’m going to run for mayor.” Mrs. Disero may be Niagara-On-The-

Lake’s first female Lord Mayor but when asked about being a woman in politics she blinks twice and answers matter-of-factly. “I guess because of my background, and coming from such a diverse, cosmopolitan area to NOTL, I’ve worked with people like Hazel McCallion, like Barbara Hall, other female leaders, so for me it’s not about male, female, it’s more about getting the job done and who is qualified.” An estimated three million tourists visit Niagara-On-The-Lake each year for the town’s 39 wineries, The Niagara Icewine Festival, The Shaw Festival, Music Niagara, the Peach Festival or outdoor activities such as cycling or golfing North America’s oldest course. Visitors and locals would agree it’s a town that merits careful planning to preserve those elements which make Niagara-OnThe-Lake special. Mrs. Disero has hardly left the town in the past five years. She claims she likes “short vacations” where she can “leave in the middle of the night, spend three days away, take a look and let’s come back,” It is obvious her heart has been captured by the place, possibly for the wide blue river and the ancient trees or is it the ghost stories, the local brew and the English-style pubs? Or possibly the town’s history? In its time, Niagara-onthe-Lake played a significant role in the establishment of many of the province’s most enduring institutions including: first capital of Ontario, first parliament, first anti-slavery legislation was passed, first library in Ontario, birthplace of the Law

Society of Upper Canada, first newspaper in the province and first historical museum. “The very first time I went to Rome; they live, walk and breathe among history. It’s older than ours, but in our own way, we did things here that created the history of our country,” Disero says with pride. “You walk through Rome, you get goosebumps. We should be doing that here because we are so historically significant to our country.” The Old Town of Niagara-On-TheLake was first recognized in 1986 when it was designated as a provincial heritage conservation district and with many national historic sites including Fort George, Brock’s Monument (1856), Willowbank (1835), Fort Mississauga and Butler’s Barracks (post-1815), and Queenston Heights (War of 1812 battle site) as well as Historic properties such as McFarland House (1800), Mackenzie Printery, of William Lyon Mackenzie, Queenston Chapel (1862), and the Laura Secord Homestead (1803-1835). Recently Niagara-On-The-Lake was voted as Canada’s Friendliest Town on expedia.ca’s annual survey. “It’s quaint, it’s friendly, and maybe it’s just because it’s so different from my own life,” says Disero. “We have a Christmas Parade and we have Christmas music on the street, the Wine Festival, everybody comes and volunteers and no one is pushed aside. Everybody pitches in. We are one community. That is what I love about Niagara-On-TheLake and why I want to try to do whatever I can to keep it that way.” TM TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 51

A view to thrill

Niagara Helicopters Flightseeing Tours 3731 Victoria Avenue, Niagara Falls, ON 905-357-5672 | niagarahelicopters.com



welcome to



LUNDY’S LANE lundyslane.com


– Just minutes from the Falls

On The WEGO Redline –


Deborah Willson was an astute Niagara businesswoman who had a copious amount of courage. She also left us with a mystery. American by birth, Deborah and her husband Charles relocated to Niagara in 1788. Seven years later, Charles opened a tavern along Portage Road at Fallsview where the Oakes Hotel is now located. Following Charles’s death in early 1812, Deborah took over the ownership and management of the tavern. Not long after, the War of 1812 broke out. During the conflict, Deborah declared herself to be neutral, providing refreshments along with information to both British and American officers who stopped at her establishment. This must have placed her in compromising and even dangerous situations at times. Nevertheless, her tavern remained open all during the war. Part of its popularity with the military on both sides was probably due to the fact that Deborah had two lovely daughters, Harriet and Statira, both of whom worked in their mother’s tavern serving food and drinks. July 25, 1814, was a date Deborah Willson would never forget. On that day, British and Canadian troops clashed with invading American forces in the bloody Battle of Lundy’s Lane, which took place in and around what is now Drummond Hill Cemetery, not far from her tavern. The conflict, which involved a total of some six thousand men, began in the early evening and only concluded around midnight after both exhausted armies had fought each other to a standstill. The Americans then began a withdrawal to their camp at Chippawa. Casualties on both sides were extremely heavy. Women featured: Wynnifred (Stokes) Hill, Judy LaMarsh, Claire Shuttleworth Photo courtesy of the Niagara Falls Public Library

By mid-evening her tavern had been turned into a makeshift hospital that was quickly filled. During the dark early hours of July 26th, she counted 60 wagon-loads of wounded men that passed by her door on their way to the American camp. Following the war, Deborah, like many Niagara residents, submitted a war losses claim to the government. Now comes the mystery. Did government authorities resent her American birth or have reason to distrust her declaration of neutrality during the war? Perhaps there was something else about the lady or what went on in her tavern that was not acceptable, for, on the cover of her war losses claim application, some official wrote these words, “Reputed character, destroyed and infamous”. Niagara’s past is full of extraordinary, fascinating women like Deborah. Read on to meet a few more ladies whose life stories deserve to be remembered. Eliza Fitzgerald Eliza was a lady who achieved some significant firsts. Born in St. Catharines, Ontario, in 1858, she began her schooling there and proved to be an outstanding pupil. In 1881, Eliza was accepted as a student by Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. This was during a time when many men had strong prejudices against women seeking higher education. Eliza persevered however, and three years later became Queen’s first woman arts graduate. She was also the first woman from Queen’s to be awarded a gold medal in classics.

Eliza went on to study for her master of arts degree and added to that accomplishment by obtaining a high school teacher’s certificate. In 1887 she became the first woman high school principal in Ontario following her appointment to Stamford Collegiate in what is now Niagara Falls. A no-nonsense, out-spoken lady, Eliza died in 1932.

In 1973 she was invested as a member in the Order of Canada. Winnifred Stokes Hill died in 1977. James Allan, former Ontario Treasurer and chair of The Niagara Parks Commission at the time, noted “She did much good for her community, the province and the country. She was an exceptional woman.”

Judy LaMarsh

“From childhood the Niagara has fascinated me.” So wrote Claire Shuttleworth, a talented artist who painted many scenes along the Niagara River during the early 20th century. Born in Buffalo, New York, in 1867, she studied and painted in various areas of the world such as New England, Bermuda, Florida, Quebec, Italy, and France. However, Claire always felt that the Niagara River offered the most wonderful opportunities for an artist. As she wrote in 1925: “I came back to our Niagara River with increasing admiration and love for the delicate beauty of colouring and the majesty of its breadth and its rushing waters. It suggests to me a great orchestral symphonic poem of which my rendering must be by brush and palette”. Accordingly, she laid plans for painting a series of canvases designed to show the visual sensations the river had to offer. The Village of Chippawa, along the Niagara River just above the Falls, soon became an important part of the project. Visiting the community in 1910, she described it as having “the charm of an old-world hamlet, yet with a wonderful combination of land and water subjects for sketching.” Captivated by Chippawa, she decided to establish a summer home and studio there, naming it Minglestreams since it was very close to where the waters of the Welland River (Chippawa Creek). and the Niagara River met. In the following years, Claire produced over 100 sketches and oil paintings portraying various scenes along the Niagara River. They received great acclaim, with one French critic describing them as “sparkling with spirit.” She was also aware that her work formed an historical record, showing the Niagara River as it was during her years in Chippawa. Already, significant changes to the environment were taking place. Concerned about this, she wrote, “The Niagara River thrills and saddens one. Its beauty is passing away, turned into utility for the coming generation. I hope that some day my canvases may help to show what these waters were in their days of beauty and might and that my labor will not have been entirely in vain.” Never married, Claire Shuttleworth died at her Buffalo home on May 7, 1930 at the age of 63. She lies buried in Holy Trinity Church Cemetery in Chippawa. Following her death, Claire’s paintings, including the Niagara series, were sold or distributed. While a few are known to be in private collections or galleries, the whereabouts of the rest are unknown. Claire’s summer home still stands on Bridgewater Street in Chippawa. Happily, as a plaque on the front of the house indicates, the present owners have kept the name Minglestreams. TM

Judy was a lady who achieved a high “rank” in Canadian federal politics at a time when it was overwhelmingly dominated by men. Born in Chatham, Ontario, in 1924, the LaMarsh family moved to Niagara Falls when Judy was seven years old. After graduating from Stamford Collegiate in 1942, she served in the Canadian Women’s Army Corps from 1943 to 1946. She then decided to study law and was called to the Bar in 1950, joining her father’s Niagara Falls practice. In the Federal Election of 1960, Judy ran for the Liberal Party. She was elected as the Member of Parliament for the Niagara Falls Riding, a seat she held until she retired from politics in 1968. When the Liberal Party under Prime Minister Lester Pearson came to power in 1963, he asked Judy to become a member of his cabinet as Minister of Health and Welfare. She became the second woman in Canadian history to serve in the federal cabinet. Two years later she was given a new role within the cabinet, becoming Secretary of State. As such, she presided over Canada’s centennial year celebrations in 1967 and also established the Royal Commission on The Status of Women in Canada. After leaving politics she became a broadcaster and an author and resumed her law practice. Judy LaMarsh died in 1980. Wynnifred (Stokes) Hill Winnifred Stokes was born in 1902 on a farm in what is now Niagara Falls. Following her graduation from high school in 1919, she set out to find a job. Having an interest in journalism, she applied at the Niagara Falls Review. The newspaper’s owner and publisher, Frank Howard Leslie, hired her for one month to sell ads. That one month turned into a 51-year career with The Review, one of the longest in Canadian newspaper history. “Wyn”, as she was popularly known, soon moved from advertising into reporting – Frank Leslie once described her as “a first-class reporter” in all departments.” She eventually became city editor and then, in 1957, was appointed The Review’s Managing Editor, becoming, it is believed, the first woman in Canada to hold such a position. During the following year she married Joe Hill who had been a long-time friend. For many years, Wyn was also involved with a vast number of professional and charitable organizations in Niagara Falls. She was the first woman to chair the Niagara Falls Board of Education, the Niagara Falls Library Board and the local United Way, as it is now known.

Claire Shuttleworth


YOUR TIRE AND AUTOMOTIVE driven to serve you in the future


OVER 60 YEARS OF SERVING NIAGARA Niagara Battery & Tire Ltd. has proudly served the Niagara Peninsula for over 60 years and thanks you for your loyal support. Our three locations in Niagara Falls, St. Catharines and Welland are ready to service your vehicle with the same trust, legendary service and quality that four generations have come to expect. Service, quality and trust, three words that represent our on-going promise to the Niagara Region.

Two Modern New Hotels

Open ed A pril 2 018

Holiday Inn Express & Staybridge Suites Niagara-on-the-Lake

FREE Hot Breakfast Buffet, FREE Parking & FREE Wi-Fi Centre complex with salt water pool & fitness centre. 5 flexible meeting rooms for events up to 120 guests. Adjacent to Outlet Collection at Niagara All-suite hotel with fully equipped kitchens, patio, BBQ & mini-putt 289-362-2500 • staynotl.com

524 York Rd

Fresh, modern guestrooms with fridge, microwave & 49” HDTV 289-362-2400 • hiexnotl.com



After a successful professional hockey career playing with the Buffalo Beauts, Sarah Casorso followed her instincts and started a new journey in beer. Cheerful, motivated, and down to earth, Casorso has found a home and vocation she enjoys as the Head Brewer at Bench Brewing Company. With two years of brewing in Ontario under her belt, Casorso is paving the way for women in the beer industry. When did you know you wanted a career in beer? For me it started after I moved back from Austria, having played hockey there for a season after university. I moved out to Niagara in September of 2016 where I started my professional hockey career in Buffalo. Given my family’s farming and grape growing background and where I was living in Ontario’s wine country, a job in the wine industry was still on my mind. But given the rise of craft beer, I thought that growing hops might also be a good idea, so when I was applying for jobs I also considered roles that might help me learn more about beer. During my search, I was actually offered two jobs at the same time. One was at a big wine company and the other was at a small start-up brewery as the Head Brewer – only two weeks after I had moved to Ontario! At this point, I didn’t even know what all the ingredients were in beer! I chose the beer opportunity because I love how accessible it is and I love the challenge that comes with learning something new. And was there ever a lot to learn! Once I tasted that first beer that I had made with my own two hands, I was hooked. It was right then that I knew I wanted to make a career in beer.

What types of beer do you brew at Bench? Where do the influences for the beer come from? At Bench, we brew a variety of styles, but are really influenced by the traditional Belgian farmhouse styles. What’s really interesting about us is that we are really two breweries in one. One side of our brewery is dedicated to ‘clean’ beers that use brewers’ yeasts like Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The other side of the brewery is dedicated to what is known as ‘funk beers’. They are called funk beers because they use wild yeast and bacteria cultures that give the beer earthy, complex, and tart notes. Here’s where we really get to take advantage of all the great local fruit in our surrounding area, as well as barrels sourced exclusively from our neighbouring wineries in the Twenty Valley. So far, our fruit sours like our Plum Grove and Cherry Grove have been big hits, and we can’t wait to release some of the interesting beers we have been aging in barrels.

How do you feel about being a pioneer for women in the industry? I find it very motivating. I think diversity in brewing is now starting to become a highly talked about topic. There was never anything in my life that I viewed as being "a man’s job or a woman’s job." I would just ask myself “am I capable of doing that?” I think more and more women are joining the beer industry because it is growing and evolving fast. Therefore, interest is higher and it’s becoming more accessible as new breweries are opening meaning more jobs are available. Traditionally, I think people saw beer as a man’s drink and the work to make it as not very glamorous. I believe craft beer is open and inclusive, so it’s starting to shift the beer culture overall. What advice do you have for women in business? My advice to women out there would be to take risks and show your confidence. Don’t look at gender but rather look at the value you bring and how you can keep learning and growing. Try new things, enjoy what you do and learn something new everyday.

How did you come to work at the Bench Brewing Company? I just happened to stumble upon the Ball’s Falls Session IPA and it quickly became my go-to beer. I dove into learning a little bit more about Bench and their whole philosophy completely resonated with me. Local, community driven, accessible beer. What are some of the unique aspects of the Bench Brewing Company? Growlers are available all the time for any beer on tap. We fill and seam the lid of the cans right in front of you. Our 1L cans are a great way to have beer that will last longer. We are unique in that sense as we are the only brewery in the area doing that. What are the benefits of a brewery in Niagara? First, we’re humbled to be in such a supportive community. The Town of Lincoln has completely embraced us. We’re also in the golden region for fresh fruit, amazing vineyards, and incredible wine barrels! We are lucky to have great friends in the surrounding farmers and wineries that share our passion and our vision for quality craftsmanship.

What do you like best about your job? We have such a great team of people here. I love coming to work everyday knowing everyone is there for the right reasons and to help us succeed. Being able to have a beer at the end of the day together doesn’t hurt either! What are some of the challenges? Being that we are a start-up brewery and have a brand-new facility, we’re still learning. Much like anything, some days don’t always go exactly as planned, and there never seems to be enough time to accomplish everything you want to. But at the same time, that’s what makes it all fun and exciting. We have a hard-working team that is up for the challenge and supports each other at every turn. TM

Photos courtesy of Bench Brewing Company TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 61

Visit penfi.ca to learn more!

The GIC with an extra guarantee!

3.25% for 15 months Plus—if the Bank of Canada rate goes up, so does your GIC.



Focus on revenue.

2 3 4

Track phone calls & store visits.

Target only the best opportunites.

Let us take care of it all for you.

More than just impressions & clicks

– it's real customers.


Offer available to new and existing PenFi members. Minimum deposit of $1,000 required. Registered and non-registered deposits applicable. Rate subject to change without notice. Deposits insured up to $250,000 (unlimited in registered plans) by the Deposit Insurance Corporation of Ontario. If the Bank of Canada raises their overnight lending rate during the term of the GIC, PenFi will increase your GIC rate by an equal amount as of that date. For example if the bank of Canada increases their rate by 0.25% on April 5th, PenFi will increase your GIC rate to 3.50% as of April 5th for the remainder of your GIC term. If the Bank of Canada lowers their rate, you will continue to receive 3.25% on your GIC for the rest of your term. Your rate will never go below 3.25%.

Women in Business. In Niagara. It happens. And it’s Awesome. By Claire Armstrong, PenFinancial Credit Union

Small businesses are a driving force of employment opportunities in Niagara. And women are starting or running many of these businesses. They are a diverse group, but generally, their businesses tend to be smaller than others, with most working as solo entrepreneurs or employing fewer than 20 people. Just because their businesses are small doesn’t mean they aren’t mighty though. They offer employment and economic growth to the region, and perhaps, more importantly, they offer many of us the flexibility and creativity we need to balance our lives and find satisfaction. As Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce president, Mishka Balsom, notes, “Women start businesses that align with personal values and offer freedom, flexibility and control.” One Woman’s Story Just ask Valerie Fyke, owner of the Atrium Spa in Fort Erie. Val was raising two children when the owner of the Atrium Spa approached her to manage his business in 2004. Val declined because she had recently closed a family business and needed time to recharge and reconnect with her family. A few months later, she agreed to work as a receptionist at the spa because it fit her life. In 2007, when she was ready, Val offered to buy the spa. For her, owning a business wasn’t all about making a profit, though.

“Most business owners aren’t driven by money. One of the great things about owning your own business is that it can give you the flexibility you need to find balance in your life. I have always structured my work days to allow time for my family. Running my own business allows me to do that. It lets me be more present and with my children.” Women often open their own businesses out of necessity and passion. Like Val, we often prioritize work-life balance and need the flexibility to create our own schedules to make that work. Many of us also prioritize living out our passions. For Val, that meant building a dynamic, creative, business and a team of strong, professional women to work with: “With the spa, I have been able to build and live in an amazing atmosphere of support and creativity.” The women that work at the Atrium Spa are like a second family, and together they satisfy the needs of their clients, and their own need to feel fulfilled through work. That supportive atmosphere has also drawn together an amazing community of clients that have supported Val and Atrium Spa on its journey to evolve and improve. This sisterhood of supportive women extends beyond the business for Val, and for many other female entrepreneurs. In building her business, Val was very active in the community and she wasn’t afraid to reach out for advice or support in her community as she navigated the ups and downs of running her spa business. The Future is Ours For Val Fyke, drawing on the support of other women has been the cornerstone of her business. “Women are great networkers and we get encouragement and support from women working together in sisterhood. Women aren’t afraid to be vulnerable and take chances. So there are great opportunities for women. I see a surge in women entrepreneurs and I can’t see it going anywhere but up. We are caring, smart, and resourceful; we are amazing multi-taskers and great time managers; and most importantly, we are not afraid to open our arms and ask for help.” If you are a woman thinking of running a small business in Niagara – or if you already do – you are lucky. You have a chance to be creative and flexible. You have a chance to create a life that fits your priorities. And you aren’t alone. You have a strong community of support. Together we are awesome. Together we will succeed. TM

Claire Armstrong is a proud PenFinancial Credit Union brand ambassador who hails from the GPA – that’s the Greater Pelham Area, folks. You can find Claire out and about Niagara representing PenFi’s Truly Local Commitment to Niagara. Visit www.penfi.ca for details. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 63

Guess who called

NIAGARA GENERATORS? Niagara Generators is an authorized sales, service and maintenance provider for all major brands. We provide service to the Niagara Region and surrounding areas and offer a complimentary site visit and quote for all new projects and renovations.


CALL OR VISIT US TODAY! 905-228-3055 niagaragenerators.ca 5927 Thorold Stone Rd., Unit #9 Niagara Falls, ON, L2J 1A1




181 Church St., St Catharines 905-684-9427 lowsglass.com



Mon-Tues 9-6 | Wed 9-5 Thurs-Fri 9-9 | Sat 9-5 Sun 12-4



728 Canboro Rd, Fenwick lampmanfurniture.com 905 892 4701

// H O M E S & D É C O R


Trends By Gabrielle Tieman-Lee

Achieving the perfect balance between personal style and being on trend can be difficult year to year – especially within your home. Thankfully, 2019 is all about this balance; functional pieces and bold colours which can be blended into your home’s current look without overhauling the space. From gathering islands to matte black metals, we are so ready for a style refresh. In speaking with the experts at Critelli's Fine Furniture in St. Catharines, they shared these top furniture trends to keep on your Pinterest boards in 2019.

All designs featured at Critelli's Fine Furniture 126 King Street , St. Catharines | critellifurniture.com TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 67

Go BOLD with Colour

See you next year grey and beige! Since Pantone declared the 2019 Colour of the Year to be Living Coral, stylists have embraced these bold, blending tones of pink, red and yellow. Interior Designer Consultant for Critelli Fine Furniture, Pam Clement, says this rich palette is perfect for making a personal statement in your home – whether it be as bold as purchasing a pink focal point piece for a room (think sectional sofa, large area rug, or statement chair) or utilizing a blend of the tones as a seasonal warm up in the form of a throw pillow, vase, or piece of art, to freshen up existing furniture. “Colour is very personal ... you should always utilize colours that you like to be surrounded by,” said Clement. “It’s all about your personality in how you utilize it. Some people are bold enough to incorporate current colours into big and main pieces and some people want to play it safe and use a new bold colour in accents.” Adding rich neutral colours to your room, like deep chocolate browns and hunter greens, can also help balance the bold coral trend. “Adding these deep colours as accent pieces can also bring richness to your primary colours in a room.” said Clement.

Above image: Pink Furniture by Stressless

Multi-functional Furniture

Add Luxury with Texture

Above image: Gathering Island by Stickley Furniture

Image, opening spread: Texture – Velvet Sofas and Shearling pillows

The shift to open concept floor plans and the surge in tiny homes and condo living have both drastically changed the style of furniture homeowners are gravitating towards in 2019. Pieces that pull double duty are now at the forefront when styling a multi-purpose room. “A lot of people are now looking for condo-sized furniture that is multi-functional,” said Clement. “People are downsizing and double duty furniture is simply put, a huge space saver.” Dining chairs are being swapped for swivel chairs; traditional coffee tables are out and nesting tables are in; and gathering islands (which create a single entertainment/dining area feature in your home by adding a counter-height island behind your sofa) are making dining rooms virtually obsolete. “It is Grand Central in your home,” said Clement. “People can sit behind the sofa at the gathering island and it brings everyone together in a single space. It is a fantastic method of tiered seating. It is great for people who entertain a lot and also for growing families.”

The trend for luxurious and soft seating that is simultaneously modern and rich is a huge movement in 2019. Sofas, armchairs, and ottomans are getting bigger, cozier, and deeper, enveloping the body into velvet fabrics and rounded shapes. But this doesn’t mean style is being sacrificed. “Velvet is timeless and a very durable fabric ... so if you are investing in a life time piece of furniture, especially for busy families, it is a perfect endurance fabric,” said Clement. “Velvet lends itself to any style. It can go with your traditional home setting and it can go right into ultra-modern.” Ultra-plush shearling –both real and faux – can also be a statement within a room while remaining welcoming and comfortable. “Pillows, ottomans, it is such a statement fabric,” said Julia Critelli, Operations Manager at Critelli Fine Furniture. “It can add such a different and bold texture to a room.”


“Every generation needs a REVELution” – Ryan Serravalle

#beREVELutionary #jointheREVELution #REVELrocks


#1 Independent Brokerage in 2016, 2017 & 2018* *Based on MLS © statistics in Niagara from Jan - Dec 2016, 2017 & 2018 from the Niagara Association of REALTORS ®

Docket 55699 Version 04 Designer55699 Matthew Docket

Version Designer

04 Matthew

8685 Lundy’s Lane Niagara Falls, ON 905.357.1700

5 Locations Now Serving YOU. 170 Highway 20 W Fonthill, ON 905.892.1702

105 Merritt Street St. Catharines, ON 905.937.3835

2-347 Airport Road Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON 905.262.8080

274 Lynden Road Brantford, ON 519.304.7253

Mixing Metals

This year, metals will be used in more interesting ways than as decorative pieces and fixtures. But we can finally take a break from shiny rose gold pieces; whether it be yellow gold, brass or matte black, 2019’s most popular metals are natural and antique in appearance and far from perfect. “Shiny is being put aside,” said Critelli. “Shiny [metals] give you that untouchable, glamorous look that is commonly found in ultramodern homes ... we don’t want that in 2019. We want subtle, more comfortable and friendly; all which goes hand in hand with the soft velvets and warm colour tones we are seeing this year.” But the real beauty of antiqued metals? They are easier to mix and match and can be incorporated into any existing style of home with ease. “Whether you have a traditional home, Victorian home, retro home, industrial home, you can add that touch of metal to balance to your current furniture while staying in the period of the home,” said Clement. “It’s about taking this current accent piece and blending it, so your home doesn’t feel like it’s trapped in one time period.” Below image: Mixing Metals – Matte Black bookcase & antique gold on the chairs

Sustainable Pieces

Go Green! But we aren’t talking the colour. Investing in lifetime pieces that feature both trendy and aesthetic materials as well as ones that can be recycled is not just becoming a preference, but also a moral responsibility. “Fast fashion is on its way out and people are becoming more conscious of waste and investing in sustainable, lifetime pieces,” said Critelli. A few key lifetime pieces, Critelli said younger generations are now investing in, include the modern poster beds, solid wood items over plywood, and 100 per cent handmade and Canadian made furniture. “The modern poster bed is clean, made up of straight lines and strong, durable wood,” said Critelli. “There are no more traditional wood carvings. They are romantic and royal and timeless and can evolve along with your personal style and the trends." TM Above Image: Modern Poster Bed by West Bros







Ripley’s offers interactive, family friendly fun for all ages at our three unique attractions. Tour OVER 800 UNIQUE EXHIBITS at the ODDITORIUM, ride every bump, dip and sharp turn inside our 4D THEATER, and take a selfie with a star at LOUIS TUSSAUD’S WAXWORKS. Don’t MOVING MOVIE THEATER forget to visit our huge wax hand station located inside the Odditorium for a unique souvenir! TOP OF CLIFTON HILL | 905.356.2238


©Ripley Entertainment Inc.



6 CLARK STREET, WELLAND 905.735.3223 | 1.800.827.4230 a1flooringwelland.ca

sun collision centre




Renovating Niagara one house at a time By Jill Tham

We all have a vision of our dream home. It could be from a childhood memory, a picture in a magazine, or a house spotted on a Sunday drive. We don’t like to admit it but we all do. Some of us have the pleasure of attaining our dream home, while others strive to upgrade their current home to reach its full potential. We find ourselves saying, “If only the cupboards looked like this” or “Taking down this wall would really open up the space.” From top to

bottom, Ravenshead Homes Inc. is helping homeowners across the Niagara Region create the perfect space to call home. “I started as an apprentice with a carpenter right out of school and I have been in construction ever since,” says James Green, owner of Ravenshead Homes Inc. “We have been in the business for 15 years now, but incorporated Ravenshead Homes in 2016.” As a graduate of the Niagara College Home Inspection Program, Green

2758 Portage Rd, Niagara Falls | 289-969-5991 | ravensheadhomes.com

uses his keen eye to perform and consult on all the aspects of home inspection throughout the building process and for potential renovation contracts. Although Ravenshead has a diverse portfolio of expertise in all areas of construction, they currently focus on renovations. “We do all kinds of work. Everything from a fence to a custom build: every day is different given the variety of projects that we do,” says Green. Although the company is named after Green’s hometown in England, Ravenshead associates itself with the raven. Known as a fierce and clever bird, the raven has many symbols throughout history. “We focus on how the nest is a home,” says Green. Green is currently in the process of using technology to develop a friendly and stress free approach to design and renovations. “Our new program is called ‘The Nest,’” says Green. “We are working towards a ‘build to suit’ program that creates packages geared towards the needs of the individual,” he explains. “The Nest is an interactive web page with five easy steps to select the five essential components of a build or addition: the architectural drawings, foundation, structure, roof, and windows.” Green is pleased with the freedom that the Nest Program gives to his clients. “We can gear the renovation to a variety of price points as each category has subcategories,” says Green. “It gives the customer a ballpark range of costs and they can see the numbers change as they make different selections,” adds Green. “We will draw out a game plan, assemble the package, and do the work,” explains Green. “I think this program will give a lot of choice and flexibility, especially for those who want to flip houses or family members that want to contract out the work themselves.” Green boasts about the company's ability to combine a homeowners vision with their budget. “We see some higher end finishes that we can put to different price approaches while bringing our own experiences and details to the build,” says Green. “We help with design and what will work well with the space by taking the appeal of the best designs and applying them to all types of builds,” says Green who services anywhere

across the Niagara Region from Fort Erie to Grimsby. “Everyone wants a new modern look,” says Green. “Niagara Region is at a point where homeowners are wanting to move out of the 70s design era and are eager to see a more modern look” he explains. “People’s families are growing, but they can’t afford to move with today’s market,” says Green, adding that rear additions are very common right now. Green offers this advice to new homeowners,“Don’t be afraid to ask questions before you start assembling drawings. Don’t get ahead of the game in order to ensure that it fits the scope of what the contractor can do,” he says. “Let the contractor help you reach your goal,” says Green, stating that homeowners can avoid a lot of hassle and wasted funds by communicating with the contractor before beginning drawings. “My advice is find the right builder and work towards designing and building your project together,” says Green. Green acknowledges that sometimes small upgrades can please a homeowner and transform a room. “On a budget, paint goes a long way,” says Green. “Changing your trim or adding crown molding to the ceiling is a small cost that changes the home and would give it a rich look.” Ravenshead is a full service company. “From start to finish we put together everything by organizing all the sub trades,” says Green. “We take the stress out of the project and shoulder the burden for the homeowner. We also work with clients who are capable of doing some of the work themselves and don’t need a builder every step of the way,” says Green. Green takes a personal approach when dealing with clients. “Given that we are a small builder, it’s hands on,” says Green. “I have a better understanding of the end picture because I am on site and at the front lines to solve the problem. From site meetings to swinging the hammer, I am present every step of the way,” says Green. Homes truly are a blank slate. If you are looking for a change, big or small, allow Ravenshead Homes Inc. to demonstrate the endless possibilities for your perfect “Nest.” TM










Three locations to serve you better: 70 Queen Street, Niagara-on-the-Lake I 905.468.0800 Canada One Factory Outlets 7500 Lundy’s Lane, Unit C1, Niagara Falls, ON I 905.356.0585 Niagara Outlet Collection 300 Taylor Road, Unit 807, Niagara-on-the-Lake I 905.685.5500


Douglas Poole





W ith over 60 years experience in the antiquing industry and located in the heart of Niagara Falls, Canada, Douglas Poole is committed to bringing you the very best in high quality antiques and selections at a fair and reasonable cost. We invite you to visit our store and browse through our fabulous collection.

Douglas Poole • Jim Weaver



4593 Victoria Ave., Niagara Falls, ON, Canada L2E 4B5 Hours: Daily from 12pm - 5pm • 905-357-1819 douglaspooleantiques.com

4460 Drummond Rd., Niagara Falls, ON L2E 6C7 905-371-2277 mcmniagara.com UCDA DEALERS ADHERE TO A STRICT CODE OF ETHICS




Located on Victoria Avenue across from Casino Niagara, Nightmares Fear Factory has been delivering the scariest experience in Niagara for over 40 years. Famous for the FEAR Pics and sheer number of visitors that chicken out, thousands of people come out to see how brave they really are. From couples, to friends, and entire family's nothing seems to help them feel safe when venturing through the most famous and scariest attraction in Niagara. Are you brave enough to make it till the end?

1 BLOCK EAST OF TOP OF CLIFTON HILL Open Year Round 5631 Victoria Ave. Niagara Falls, On

905.357.FEAR (3327) www.NightmaresFearFactory.com




your living space light fixtures and ideas for modern homes By Lauren Charley

Lighting inside a house is a necessity, but the fixtures you choose to adorn your home define the overall look of a space whether it be plain, old-fashioned, contemporary, or elegant. With so many options including chandeliers, pot lights, and pendants, builders consider lighting as an integral part of the overall design. In 2019, modern lighting stores carry an array of options for home owners including dozens of styles, with options to select what type of bulbs you use and how you source your electricity which can have a drastic impact on your energy bills. Lighting is not just essential to a residence, but is also a decorative part of the interior design.

Chandeliers When you imagine walking into the grand entranceway of a millionaire’s estate home, you picture a huge chandelier with crystals hanging at least two stories above the floor. These grand chandeliers are associated with mansions not only because of the expensive materials they are made from, but also the hassle and expense it is to clean them. However, a ‘chandelier’ by definition is a branched ornamental light fixture, with no specific guide to size or structure.

Lighting stores carry an array of options for even small homes to install a chandelier which will match the look of an entrance or living space. From fancy crystals to metal frames with metallic finishes, spikes, and abstract designs, there are numerous options for you to add one of these fancy light fixtures to your home.

Flush Mount Flush mounts are the most common types of lights in residential spaces. There are two types: a flush mount, where there is no gap between the light fixture and the ceiling, and a semi-flush, which has a stem that creates a gap. From clean and contemporary, to unique and bold, there are options for flush mount lights which will suit any style of residence.

Pot Lights Built into a hollow opening in the ceiling, pot lights are simple choices for contemporary homes. Rather than the light itself being an adornment, they typically are used as a light source which blends into the room, and highlights the furniture, art and features. The installation is far more intricate than other types of fixtures, and often requires the help of a professional electrician to know the wiring and suggest the best placement.

Vintage-Inspired ‘Edison’ Lightbulbs Antique light bulbs are an emerging trend in modern residences, especially those who want more of a ‘hipster vibe’ in their home. These modern reproductions of the wound filament bulbs made popular by the Edison Electric Light Company are designed to replicate the same bulb shape and light colour, while offering a more- energy efficient option. You can even get them in LED.

Pendants Pendant or ‘drop’ lights, are standalone lights which hang from a ceiling, suspended by a chord or metal rod. They are often used over kitchen islands, as a way to provide a bright light source directly above the surface area. Modern pendants come in a variety of materials, sizes and shapes. The fluid, curvy, teardrop style is often the most aesthetically pleasing, made from artisan glass and metal. The shape of your pendant light is integral, as the narrow tears and cylinders produce ambient lighting, whereas dome-shape and drums provide more illumination.

Sconces A sconce is a light fixed to the side of a wall, providing illumination upwards, downwards, or in both directions. These fixtures use the wall for their support and do not have a base, therefore they require an electrical box to be installed. Modern sconces can be made of glass or metal and range from trendy or timeless in design. The idea is an adaptation from traditional torches or candles in times before electricity.

Choosing the Best Bulbs LED bulbs last up to 50,000 hours and will use significantly less power than halogen bulbs. Not only are they more efficient and brighter, but they reduce electricity bills. These are the types of bulbs used inside the lighting fixtures you see installed in places like schools, hospitals, and factories where lights are constantly left on, as they are reliable and long-lasting. “With the ever-evolving technology in LED lighting we, are able to create many different looks in numerous applications. Residential lighting is coming into its own with many fixtures appearing to be pieces of art showing curves and straight lines with a minimal amount of structure. This gives a modern feel along with an excellent light source. We are able to use LED technology in the smallest areas and create an amazing ambience behind fireplaces and back light feature walls and ceilings,” says Jenny Howlett, Manager at Distinctive Lighting. TM


2018 Winter Ad copy.pdf 1 2018-08-09 5:17:04 PM



style style

at Niagara’s Finest Lighting Showroom









40 Scott Street West, Unit 1A St. Catharines 905-984-8727

or shop online at distinctivelighting.net

Scooterville. all things electric.



5309 Portage Rd., Niagara Falls, Ontario L2E 6B8 Hours of Operation: Daily,10am-6pm

905.356.4590 FOLLOW US

New L O C K B



on the

With the recent addition of GO TRAIN service linking Niagara to Toronto, it stands to reason that the Niagara Region will be growing even more so as a bedroom community to Toronto. More people will be settling in the area simply because the cost of living here is exponentially lower than in the big city. There is still a lot of space available, and development prospects are ripe for the picking. Bring in Impero Construction! Impero Construction is locally-owned and operated and is the umbrella to three separate subsidiaries: Impero Luxury Homes, Impero Contracting, and Impero Holdings. Headquartered in Australia, and newly come to Canada, the Impero name is quickly taking over Southern Ontario by storm, from Fort Erie to Oakville. Impero Construction offers the highest level of quality and innovative construction services at fair market, and competitive pricing. The team at Impero is young, experienced, and savvy and is prepared to undertake just about any construction project that can be imagined. “We will work with you to bring your unique desires to life as per your personal specifications so that your house becomes your home,” says the team at Impero Luxury Homes. They offer a unique, one-on-one approach that gives their clients that personal touch and familiarity. “The biggest and most important financial investment of your life is your house. We are with you every step of the way to ensure that you have a voice in the construction process of your new home,” says the team. Impero Luxury Homes is dedicated and committed to providing its clients with the highest quality finishes and amenities in their new homes, on budget and while adhering to timelines. If going “green” is your thing, you can trust Impero Luxury Homes to offer you the best construction options that will help you lessen the carbon footprint that you leave on our planet. Eco-friendly construction not only provides a healthier living environment, but it also boasts a tremendous savings on utility bills. “We will provide you with the most efficient and productive technology, and the best materials to ensure that your new construction is eco-friendly while still maintaining its aesthetic integrity.” Renos are the trend! Just tune into HGTV to see how popular renovations have become. So, if you opt to go the route of renovating

rather than going for a new build, Impero Contracting can help. “Whether you are looking for more room, more usable space, or more updated features, we will be with you from start to finish – from planning, to design, to demolition, and finally to rebuild,” assures the team. Impero Contracting specializes in additions, renovations, and exterior alterations using state of the art designs and concepts. They will bring your reno vision to life. Budding entrepreneurs can find a very unique service that is exclusive to Impero Holdings’ operation, which is an investment company that will broker with prospective inventors. “We will work closely with potential investors to transform residential, commercial, and industrial properties into works of art,” states the team at Impero Holdings. Impero Construction is a full, in-house operation which provides a fresh, new, and modern take on traditional construction, renovations, and property development. You can count on this team to maintain the highest levels of professionalism, integrity and reliability. Impero Construction prides itself not only on its excellent reputation for custom-built properties and one-of-a-kind renos, but the company is also very active in the community, working with many local charitable organizations. “We find it very important to give back to the community that we come from and that we are working with.” When the time comes for whatever your construction project may be, Impero Construction has a great team that can bring to life your vision, and accommodate your budget. This “New Kid on the Block” will bring you along for the exciting ride of seeing your dream materialize right before your eyes, from the ground up. As one very satisfied client says, “Impero helped make our dream a reality!” TM








By Lauren Charley Properties nowadays are expensive. Purchasing a large piece of land or buying a big house is not always an economically feasible option, nor practical. Owning a condominium versus a freestanding property comes with certain benefits, such as building maintenance and landscaping included in your fees; however, space is often an issue. Interior decorating, furniture selection, and even the fixtures you choose play an integral role in the illusion of space in a room or home. Creating ‘zones’ is key when designing a small area. Interior Designer, Marcy Mussari says, “To me, to have a ‘zone’ in design is to create a different atmosphere, use, or purpose in a space”. Marcy likes to refer to these zones as ‘moments’. A single small area, such as an entranceway, can have multiple purposes by including features such as a full-length mirror to check your appearance, a decorative bowl to store keys, and a bench for putting on shoes. The following are tips to optimize a small apartment or home without making it feel too crammed or clustered: 1. Lighting and Mirrors Standing and table lamps take up space or require a surface which could be used as an area for something else. Hanging lights such as pendants, and wall sconces are decorative and take up little space. LED strip lights are one of the simplest solutions for additional lighting, come in an array of colour options, and can be tastefully disguised as, or incorporated into, wall art and decor. Natural lighting is a small space’s best friend, as a large window itself provides the feeling of a room being larger. Sunlight is an inexpensive way to open up the interior of a room. Utilize your windows, or if you’re renovating, consider adding one, or even a skylight, to open up your place. Similar to lighting, strategically-placed mirrors can dramatically increase the appearance of space, by creating the illusion of space replicated in reflection. Photos courtesy of Marcy Mussari

2. Multi-Purpose Furniture When selecting new furniture for a room or home, shop for options where the fittings can be used for more than one purpose. For example, instead of a traditional coffee table, choose a bench with hidden storage which can be also used as either a table or extra seating when guests come over. Convertible furniture such as sofa beds and futons are not just for grungy basements. Furniture stores and online shopping platforms carry many options for tasteful ‘convertible sofas’ which blend into living rooms whether they’re stylish or simple. A contemporary dining set such as the Osgood 5-piece dining set, available on multiple online shopping platforms, is a small wooden table with vinyl finish, complete with four matching ottomans, each providing storage space and which tuck away neatly under the table’s surface.

“Accents” are the key to giving a living space some personality and flare without depleting the illusion of space.

3. Skirted Furniture For old-fashioned and traditional rooms, consider a simple re-upholstery technique which covers the space between the seat legs and the floor. You can find a skirting for your current bed, or to add to a chair or sofa; you can choose a material which matches or contrasts tastefully with the existing fabric.

4. Utilize Your Wall Space Walls are the home’s number one untapped resource for storage which can be transformed into a work of art. By tastefully adding shelving and hooks and displaying your best belongings- such as the ‘good china’- you are adding storage and organization which doubles as adornment. “If you have the wall space then use it! Custom shelving is not only great for storage but also adds a special architectural detail to the space. If your wall space is limited, then another creative idea is installing storage on the ceiling. One way to do this is to install a beautiful iron pots and pan rack over an island,” - Mary Mussari.







5. Colour Choice for Decorating Colour choice has a huge impact on the illusion of space. White is an obvious choice, but there are options for home owners who wish to have a darker and more dramatic look to enhance the theme of a room. Accent walls are walls which stand out from the others to give the room some unique personality. For example, while the room may have three neutral coloured walls, one specific area is highlighted by a contrast dark or bright colour. Marcy Mussari says that many of her clients choose to add an accent colour behind the sofas, or somewhere unexpected such as behind a staircase or some open shelving.

If you can’t add in a pantry, consider purchasing a coffee station with additional storage or ‘China cupboard’ where the surface can double as extra counter space. 7. Arranging your living area furniture

6. Necessary Storage Space for Appliances

When it comes to the living room, especially in a smaller apartment or condo, arranging the furniture to maximize the space is key. Mary Mussari says when designing her clients’ entertaining areas, she starts with a rug in the centre of the room large enough to have two front legs of each piece of furniture on top of it. “From there I create a ‘conversation area’ with two chairs, a sofa, love seat, or chaise lounge. The coffee table or ottoman goes in the centre, and from there I add lighting, side tables and decor wherever they fit” says Marcy.

Appliances take up a lot of space in the kitchen, and cluttered countertops counteract the appearance of cleanliness. It is important when designing a kitchen to have a spot for small appliances such as the toaster, mixer, blender, and other items we do not use daily.

So, if you live in a small condo, or just have a small room to make use of, creativity is key. Use some of the tips here, and others you can find in home magazines or from professional interior designers to help you best utilize your beautiful small space. TM

Join Us For The Best Stand Up Comedy Comedy Every Weekend Thursday 8:00pm Friday & Saturday 8:00pm & 10:30pm Located across from the Fallsview Casino and Connected by Indoor Walkway Free Parking • Food & Drink Menu Available Purchase tickets: yukyuksniagarafalls.com More information: apriftis@fallsviewgroup.com • 1-800-899-9136 6455 Fallsview Blvd, Niagara Falls, ON

eating &


al fresco upgrading your

patio for outdoor dining

By Lauren Charley

Fresh air, peaceful sounds, a soft breeze and the smells of spring and summer make eating outdoors favourable, especially in climates where these months provide optimal temperatures to spend time outside. Here in the Niagara region, patio dining in the warmer months is offered at many popular restaurants, and home owners are now wanting to bring this experience to their own backyards. ‘Al fresco’ dining has become increasingly popular in contemporary landscaping, and simply a barbecue and patio set seem passé for those wanting to truly enjoying eating a meal outdoors. Give your patio a makeover, and invest in some upgrades to make your backyard a welcoming place to host and entertain guests, or simply just enjoy your meals with family or a peaceful morning coffee solo, al fresco.


outdoor sectionals

It’s like being in a living room, but you’re outside! Outdoor sectionals are trendy patio furniture sets which include a sofa and coffee table, and sometimes extra seats and an ottoman, to bring the ultimate lounging experience into the sun. Though it’s hard to serve a full traditional meal on a sectional, imagine eating on your laps while watching TV, but under the sun experiencing the magic of spring and summer.

beach house themed outdoor dining rooms

Bring a little ocean flare to your outdoor dining space, by selecting a matching set of wicker furniture with colourful cushions. For the table, choose a stone or wood design to provide a natural look. Beach-inspired decor such as seashell wind chimes, and a vase filled with sand and glass beads bring your al-fresco dining space closer to the ocean, no matter if you live in the country or suburbia.


covered pergolas

Begin the transformation of your patio into an inviting dining space with the addition of a pergola. These provide shade or cover to a walkway or outdoor eating area and can be made from iron or wood. The structures have a lattice or crossbeam covering which can be adorned with pretty floral displays, vines, or weather-resistant fabric to create curtains.

al fres·co The term ‘Al Fresco’ is borrowed from Italian for ‘in the cool air’. Fresco in Italian translates to fresh in English. Therefore, when we dine al fresco, we are enjoying a meal in the fresh air.

retractable awnings

Similar to the idea of a covered pergola, a retractable awning provides the optimal way to transform an open sun-bathing spot to a covered dining spot. These are great for small patios, as you can choose whether or not you need shade when eating outside.


stone pizza ovens

Outdoor “Masonry Ovens” have in recent years become a trendy addition to home patios. Known as brick or stone ovens, they consist of a baking chamber made from fire-proof brick, stone, or clay. Traditionally, these were used in kitchens to perform any sort of baking, yet modern outdoor ovens are usually associated with artisan breads and pizzas. They’re both a conversation starter, and a unique activity to offer guests when you entertain outside in the summer. Instead of a traditional barbecue, why not host a ‘Make Your Own Pizza Patio Party’? TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 87


1.866.393.5612 skylon.com/REV


outdoor bars

When lounging in the sun or entertaining in the evenings, what a better way to keep drinks conveniently at hand than with a personal outdoor bar? Imagine hosting a sunset cocktail hour where you can play bartender, or allow your guests to help themselves to a mixed drink with your liquor, mixes, ice, and glasses all in one spot. Outdoor bars are an inexpensive upgrade to your patio and can be purchased with matching bar stools to enjoy beverages and snacks al fresco.

deluxe modern grills with built in cabinets

Everyone enjoys a barbecue in the summer. Whether we serve traditional favourites like hot dogs and burgers, grilled veggies, or get fancy and try out cedar-planked salmon, these outdoor appliances are a necessity for enjoying meals al fresco. The latest grills, such as the Broil King Imperial XLS, include features like electronic ignition systems to start the grill by pushing a button, stainless steel dual-tube burners, to prevent flames from grease drips, and even built in lights and illuminated knobs, so you can cook outside at nighttime. In addition to an expansive grilling area, they include additional side burners, a rotisserie kit, and surfaces to keep food warming while you finish barbecuing. Don’t forget, there is also additional storage space inside the stainless steel cabinets.

built in outdoor kitchens

These are not an easily affordable option, however, if you’re looking to really give your patio a makeover and not only serve, but prepare an entire meal outdoors, consider installing a built-in outdoor kitchen. You can purchase these at patio furniture stores, or shop online to find something which suits your landscaping. Outdoor kitchens such as the Caribbean BBQ Island Outdoor Kitchen 4-Burner Built-In Convertible Gas Grill by KoKoMo come with expansive countertop space, a mini fridge, and instead of a stove and oven, a luxury 4-burner grill. You don’t need a full backyard makeover to upgrade your al fresco dining area this season. Choose simple and affordable upgrades as a starting point, and allow the inspiration of the outdoors and the tranquility of the summer bring your ideas to make your alfresco dining space come to life. TM TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 89

  Tower and a

The banter is entertaining. The mutual respect is evident. The lasting friendship and camaraderie is admirable. The world-famous REVOLVING DINING ROOM IN THE SKYLON TOWER is not only home to an unparalleled, 360-degree view of the mighty Niagara and some really fabulous food, but it’s also where you can ďŹ nd these three gentlemen, busily working away to make your dining experience memorable. They were gracious and welcoming as I sat down to have a chat with them. By Martine Mackenzie

// H E R E S E E D O

Captain Piano Man Director Tom Laslo

Doug Bates

Brad Moll

Revolving Dining Room

Revolving Dining Room


of Food & Beverage Skylon Tower

Now, Tom, how long have you been a Captain in the Revolving Dining Room? Tom: I’ve been here 27 years. And Brad, I understand that you started really young.

Doug, how long have you been playing the piano in the Revolving Dining Room? Doug: 32 plus years. It’s my first Canadian job.

Brad: Doug works 6 days a week as well. He never calls in sick, never takes a day off. He’s unbelievable! Tom: He is the longest running musician at the same job, in Canada. Doug: (laughs) Let’s call the Guinness Book of World Records. Photos courtesy of Emma Cavanagh

Brad: Yes, I started when I was 14. I’m in my 37th year. I started when the Skylon was owned by CP Hotels. My dad used to play for their baseball team and I used to go out there and watch the games. A lot of the management of CP Hotels was there and I got to know them. I started out as a dishwasher. What does your job entail, Doug? Doug: Well, what I do is play the piano and I try to play in such a way that people can talk while they are dining but they can also, if they want to, just listen to the piano. I don’t want to get in the way of their conversation but if they want to hear a little music, they have a choice. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 91

different styles I play all

– a little ragtime, a little blues, a little classical, some old standards… As Time Goes By, and of course, Piano Man.

the husband doesn’t know, but the wife will. (laughs) Without them knowing it, I’ll go back to Doug and he’ll play it. If he doesn’t know it, he’ll look it up on his tablet and have it within minutes! I wait for the nod from Doug, and when the table comes around front, with the revolving, we’ll bring out some cake with candles, and I’ll say, “Dougie, you’re on!” He plays their wedding song. Now Brad, you’re the Food and Beverage Director.

Brad: Doug will play to his audience as well.

Doug: Yes. We get people from all over the world with different cultures. So, I get a feel for what they like. Tom: And he’ll play songs for little kids.

Brad: He plays for birthday parties, anniversaries…

Doug: I play all different styles – a little ragtime, a little blues, a little classical, some old standards…As Time Goes By, and of course, Piano Man. Do you have formal training? Doug: Yes. Toronto Conservatory and then I went to Brock for a year. I studied advanced theory and composition. Practical training was when I worked with a show group out of Chicago and worked all over the country. So, you’re American? Doug: No, I’m Canadian. But when I was playing there was no work here in Canada. All of my work up until here was in the States. Now, what about you Tom? Tell me what you do as Captain. Tom: I oversee a specific section of the restaurant. After the Maitre d’ seats our diners, I greet them. I try and make them feel comfortable and get a drink order. I then ensure they are receiving the high level of service every guest deserves. Brad: Tom is one of our senior guys. We have many VIPs that come in who request Tom. He’s been here for so long as well that people just know him and his great service. Doug: (laughs) Tom helps me remember songs.

Tom: This is a thing that Doug and I do. (laughs) This is beautiful! People are here to celebrate in most cases. Some people are just out for dinner. But there’s always a birthday or a 50th wedding anniversary. We get lots of anniversaries. So, I’ll go to the table and sneak in the question, “What was your wedding song?”. Usually

Brad: Yes. I worked my way through the ranks while I was attending high school and University. I’ve gone from dishwasher, to bus boy, to waiter, to Maitre d’. I became Dining Room Manager and from there Food and Beverage Director. I oversee the front of the house operations of our two restaurants. I also run the quick-service locations at the Tower including 2 Starbucks, a Dairy Queen, a Pizza Pizza. It’s a challenge, but that’s what I love about this job – it’s always changing, especially with social media. You have to be on your game all the time. Let’s talk memorable moments. You’ve all got to have memorable moments. Doug: I have to use the Jerry Lewis story. He was here on a Monday, before Christmas. He was doing a play in Buffalo at Shea’s Theatre and came here for dinner on his day off. I saw him come in and he was talking to one of the waitresses and they were both looking at me. I started to get worried. (laughs) I figured that he’s going to ask for a song, and I won’t know it. But he walked over and put a $100 bill in my lapel and stood behind me and watched me play for about 5 or 10 minutes and he invited me over to his table when I finished my set. I sat down with Jerry, his wife, and a friend of theirs. He asked for my phone number because he wanted to record me. He called my house 3 times that week and by the following Saturday night, after I finished at the Skylon, I went over to Track Master in Buffalo at midnight! He took over the whole studio! And he ran it all – the lighting, the recording equipment… There was a concert grand piano all tuned up for me. I played for him until about 2:00, 2:30 in the morning. I played about 28 pieces with a 20-minute pizza and wings break in between from the Anchor Bar which is just around the corner. (laughs)

Tom: Doug, you’re being a little humble because Jerry said, “Doug, you’re probably the best pianist I have heard in 30 years.” Doug: (very humbly) Well…

So, where did your music end up? Doug: I have no idea! (laughs) I signed a contract protecting the music and he paid me handsomely for the night, and was really good with me.

Hank Jones, Billie Holiday’s accompanist was also so important. He heard me play and came over and complimented me. As a musician, coming from a guy like Hank Jones, it was something else. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 93

What about you Tom? Any important people, VIPs that made an impression on you? Tom: I’ve waited on a few. I waited on Katy Perry. She was amazing. I realized how old I was then. I kept saying, “Katy Perry…where have I heard of her?” (laughs) I had no idea how big she was until the next day when I was getting phone calls. My niece was so excited that I waited on her! I told Katy that if she had any questions about the Falls to just ask me, but she was a little shy at first. By the end of the night, she was blowing me kisses! She was so nice. Brad, in all of your years here, in all of the different capacities you’ve worked, I’m sure you’ve had some interesting encounters. Brad: Well, Katy Perry was definitely up there. But the Red Bull Crashed Ice event was amazing. We pulled together so many things in a very short time. Watching everything come together perfectly was pretty awesome! Many other celebrities such as Regis Philbin and Kathie Lee Gifford had dinner here, so did Howie Mandel. The list goes on. We have an autograph book that was signed by all of these people that have come here. Doug: Christopher Reeve and Gene Hackman were here when they filmed Superman II. They sat together in a booth.

Brad: Robert Plant was here too. I remember no one knew who he was at first. He just came on his own. A couple of the busboys were saying, “That guy looks like Robert Plant!” And it was! He was nice enough to sign autographs for many of the staff. (laughs) Wayne Gretzky came here when he was just starting out in the NHL and I was a dishwasher at that time. When I heard Wayne was here, I snuck out even though I wasn’t supposed to be out in the restaurant. (laughs) He had taken over the restaurant after he had played in Buffalo. There were about 6 or 7 people with him. The dining room was theirs because it was after 10:00 when he came. I was trying to get a look at him, but I couldn’t see him, so I turned around to go back to the kitchen, and SMACK! Right into him! (everyone laughing) I just remember him being really nice.

The testament of a good and successful business is when its staff stays. What has kept you all here at the Skylon for all of these years? What is it about the Skylon that makes you want to be here? Doug: Well, I like playing to a variety of people. We like to see young and old here. We welcome people of all cultures. They show me different ways of playing and share with me what’s musically important to them. Everyone identifies to rhythm. And the management has been great! They give me the freedom to play what I want. I love that! Brad: It’s similar for me too – it’s the management. The Yerich family always shows such respect to their employees. They’re a family with great integrity. I also can’t say enough about all of my staff. Without their hard work none of this would be possible.

Tom: Just to add to that a bit. My family has gone through some health issues. The Yerich family always asks how everyone is doing. And it’s sincere. They really care. Brad: George has grown with us too because we’ve all worked together for so long. We’re all family. We see each other’s kids grow up. We see each other’s struggles and we support each other. We see each other’s triumphs and we celebrate. So many of us come through the ranks and stay here. And then there are those students who are here the whole time they’re in school, and they’ve gone off and become lawyers and doctors, and they still come back here to see us. This is our family.

Brad, Doug, and Tom epitomize what it means to be gentlemen. I strongly recommend to anyone, local or tourist, to make your way up the Skylon Tower to enjoy a great dining experience at the Revolving Dining Room. And when you see any or all of these three charmers, tell them Martine sent you! TM TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 95




q &M








Canadian Maple





Learn about




fudge factory






// H E R E S E E D O




We sit down with ex-NHL players to discuss life after hockey, their greatest moments and what they think of the game today.


Two Minutes in the box


zenon konopka By Martine Mackenzie


CENTRE • 2005


Which teams did you play for in the NHL?

Do you still follow the NHL?

What was it like playing in the NHL?

Tell us about your nickname, “Zenon the Destroyer”. Who gave you that moniker and how on earth did they come up with it?

I started with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, then the Columbus Blue Jackets, the Tampa Bay Lightning, the New York Islanders, the Ottawa Senators, the Minnesota Wild and finished with the Buffalo Sabres.

There are so many amazing things. Obviously, you’re playing at the highest level. It’s the dream of so many kids growing up. It’s surreal at times, but then you realize it’s a job and you have to get it done or you won’t have a job. (laughs)

The NHL has changed so much over the years. What do you think of the game today?

I enjoy it! There are so many great players to watch. But to be honest, I miss the physicality. There was always that physical aspect to hockey. I played an important part there. The role of “enforcer” doesn’t really exist like it used to.

What was your biggest accomplishment while you were playing in the NHL?

I think it was becoming a leader on the team and in the dressing room. I played with some players who are still in the game today – John Tavares, Erik Karlsson, Matt Dumba – it’s cool to continue to follow them and know that I had a positive influence on them as young players.

What is one of your favorite memories of your time in the NHL?

There’s a bunch! When we were playing in Madison Square Garden in the playoffs, it was Game 5 and we were up 2 to 1. There was a time-out called and I was on face-off. Jason Spezza was the second centre man out there. Our play was for me to win the draw and shoot it around to Spezza to get it out. It’s pretty intense in the playoffs. During that time-out, I took a step back, and the crowd was going nuts. There was less than a minute left and I looked at the linesman and I said, “This is pretty cool!" That’s the only time I’ve ever done that! I won the draw, the play worked perfectly, and we scored on the empty net which gave me an assist. I wish it was a better end to the story because we lost the series. (laughs)

I still do. It’s great for young kids to have these amazing role models in the NHL and the game is still great to watch.

To be honest, I don’t really know! (laughs) When I played in Tampa Bay, I had 33 fights which is the most fights in the last 40 years, and when I played in Long Island, I had over 300 penalty minutes. I believe it was the fans in Tampa. They were making t-shirts! Tampa is one of my favorite cities. They are very passionate about sports in Tampa, and hockey, believe it or not. I had a pretty big following there! I was on a billboard on the way to the airport! I’m thinking, “How is this happening?” (laughs)

Your career has taken you all over North America, back to your father’s homeland of Poland and even to the land down under, Australia. What made you return to Niagara in your retirement? I love Niagara! I grew up here! A lot of guys in the NHL only go back to their hometowns in the summer to visit for a few weeks. I came back for the whole summer. I was always excited to get back here. I have a lot of family and friends here. It’s a great place to raise a family.

Any advice to the young men out there aspiring to hit the big time?

Anything you’re going to do in life, whether it’s hockey or anything else, you have to keep learning. You have to keep working at your trade. It’s one of those things where you almost have to be obsessed with what you do and have fun doing it. If you enjoy it, you’re going to work more at it. I still work with kids and I like giving back to the community through my charitable work. Hopefully, we can see more local Niagara kids in the NHL. TM


to be obsessed with what you do and have fun doing it.

Photo courtesy of Haskell Photography. Location: White Oaks Conference Resort & Spa. TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 99

Two Minutes in the box


Jarrod Skalde By Martine Mackenzie

Which teams did you play for in the NHL?

I played for the New Jersey Devils, Anaheim Mighty Ducks, Calgary Flames, San Jose Sharks, Chicago Blackhawks, Dallas Stars, Atlanta Thrashers, and Philadelphia Flyers.

Wow! Those are a lot of roots to set down.

(laughing) You don’t set any roots down when you have a career like that!

What was it like playing in the NHL?

It was very exciting. I still remember when I found out I was playing in Pittsburgh for my first game with the New Jersey Devils at 19 years old. I got to play against some great players and with some great players. You remember the guys that you played with, the cities that you played in.

The NHL has changed so much over the years. What do you think of the game today?

I just think it’s a better product. The skill level, the speed…what’s on display now is absolutely terrific! To watch a guy like Mitch Marner play is sensational. It’s still fun to watch old games and look back on the physicality. I still think the physicality made the games exciting to watch. These young players are so talented and skilled and now that the rules allow all of that to be on display just makes for such a great product, from the goaltending out.

What was your biggest NHL accomplishment?

Your first NHL game and your first NHL goal have to be the greatest. Both of these happened with me at Madison Square Garden when I was with the New Jersey Devils. My first goal was the game-winning goal. It was so exciting to score on a big stage like MSG right in Manhattan. I also got the overtime winning goal when I was with the Anaheim Mighty Ducks which was in front of 19000 people at home in our first year as a franchise. There was so much excitement buzzing around that team. To be able to contribute to that was thrilling.

What is one of your favorite memories of your time in the NHL? The short time that I was in Chicago, it was pretty amazing to put on that Original 6 jersey and represent the Chicago Blackhawks. Living in that city was fantastic. I was fortunate enough to play


CENTRE • 199



with great players like Scott Stevens, Marty Brodeur, Mike Modano, Chris Chelios. You really form strong bonds and make strong friendships with these guys.

You played in Switzerland, Sweden and Japan. What was that like compared to hockey here in North America?

In Switzerland, we lived in Lausanne, the French part right off Lake Geneva. It’s such a beautiful place and country. The brand of hockey is different. They are very passionate! Every game, every building we went to it was a soccer-type crowd where they’re standing and chanting. In Sweden, the culture was a little bit more subdued but the talent level that these Swedish teams have is really incredible. My fondest memory of going over is definitely playing in Japan. We lived on the north island of Hokkaido, in a town called Tomakomai City. I’ve never felt like the biggest guy on the ice, but there I did! (laughs). It felt great to be able to dominate on the ice. I could never do that over here!

After your retirement from the NHL, you turned to coaching. You are currently an assistant coach with the Pittsburgh Penguins AHL affiliate team, the WilkesBarre-Scranton Penguins. What is it like to be on the other side of the bench?

It takes adjusting. I’m in my 11th year. I played 17 years and I got a head coaching job right out of playing. Within 3 to 4 months, I was behind the bench. You think, as a player, that you have all the answers until you get behind the bench. I tried to draw off past experiences that I had in my time with Lou Lamoriello for 4 years in New Jersey. That’s how I built my foundation by drawing from my experiences. You continue to learn and grow. I look back even 4 years ago at how much better of a coach I am today. The game is always changing and you’re always trying to get better.

Any advice to the young men out there aspiring to hit the big time?

You have to have a passion for the game. It’s so difficult to play at a higher level beyond minor hockey. The ones that are successful have that true passion to play. That can’t come from another source, like parents or relatives. It has to come truly from within. There has to be that desire to play the game and improve. When we are evaluating talent at minor hockey games, we see speed and skill, but what you’re really drawn to is the kid that has that passion to play and has a high compete level. TM

you have to have passion for the game.





pioneer ERA



free TASTING BAR! experience

Formerly know as Souvenir City, Maple Leaf Place is Niagara’s preferred onestop attractions, retail and restaurant outlet and is conveniently located just 5 minutes from the Falls with loads of free on-site car parking and easily accessible by WeGo bus Green Line.

The Maple Trail Niagara’s Newest Attraction FREE ADMISSION! All new this year, opening in April, is Niagara’s newest attraction experience – The Maple Trail. We’ve brought the Maple Sugar Bush indoors! Our brand new 5,000 square foot Maple Trail features a 30’ Swarovski Crystal maple tree center piece. The Maple Trail includes an exciting, educational interpretive display of Canada’s maple syrup heritage. You’ll learn Maple Syrup’s origins with Canada’s First Peoples, its evolution through the Pioneer Era to Modern Day production, its health benefits, as well as maple syrup’s significance to Canadian culture and identity.

Maple Leaf Place Shopping Maple Leaf Place boasts a 20,000 square foot space, including Niagara’s largest selection of fine Canadian gift ware and Niagara souvenirs, First Nations crafts, and Niagara’s only on-site wood-carving demonstrations. You will also find our Fudge Factory, famous for its home-made fudge, and renowned Chocolate World, along with travel essentials and so much more! If you’re looking for top quality gifts or souvenirs to celebrate your visit to Niagara Falls, Maple Leaf Place has it all. You’ll enjoy our newly refurbished retail marketplace with a warm and inviting atmosphere full of top quality unique souvenirs, gifts and collectables for every occasion. Maple Leaf Place shopping offers top quality and best prices for everything Niagara! Be sure to include a Maple Leaf Place shopping experience in your Niagara Falls visit.

The Big Hungry Moose Dine in our new 120-seat food court and you’re guaranteed to find something delicious to fuel your day. At the Big Hungry Moose, you’ll enjoy fabulous, fast, Canadian fare. Grab a fresh personalized salad, awesome burgers from our grill, a great selection of pizzas and our famous paninis. Of course, we also have the alltime Canadian classic – Poutine. We serve generous portions for the heartiest of appetites. But save room for our new signature ice cream treat – The Sweet Canoe! A Niagara Falls classic not to be missed. The Big Hungry Moose offers a clean, comfortable, casual rest stop with complimentary wi-fi. TM

niagara first nations WOOD



fudge factory FREE SAMPLES!




Open 364 days a year (closed for Christmas Day) 4199 River Road (Niagara Parkway), Niagara Falls, ON mapleleafplace.ca | Toll Free 1.866.344.0985 | 905.357.1133 Photos courtesy of Maple Leaf Place TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 103

Radiating Spring Joy:

Daffodils By Andrew Hind

Canadian winters are long and dreary. We find ourselves longing for the arrival of warmer days, the melting snow, and the revitalization of our yards. Spring, when it finally comes around, arrives slowly, shyly. And then it happens. Seemingly overnight, gardens burst to life with cheerful dashes of gold as daffodils push their way through the soil. Radiating spring joy, daffodils are the perfect tonic for the winter-weary. Some might argue daffodils are the perfect flower: perennial, brightly colored, hardy, and largely care free, and among the first flowers of spring when yards are dreary and colorless. In short, what’s not to love about these quintessential spring favorites? Certainly Charles Hunter, Director of Horticulture for Niagara Parks Commission, appreciates their appeal. “We plant 35,000 daffodils every year, and there are over a million in our parklands stretching from Lake Ontario to Lake Erie. Niagara Falls is known as ‘Daffodil Capital of North America’ and for good reason”, he explains. Daffodils, a member of the Amaryllis family, are native to the meadows and woods in Europe, North Africa and western Asia. These harbingers of spring have been inspiring people for centuries; so much so the daffodil is a plant with great cultural significance in many societies. One of the reasons daffodils are so beloved today is the ease in which they are grown. Few flowers give so much and demand so little. “Tulips are the princesses of the bulb world because they demand so much attention, whereas daffodils are largely carefree. They are very soil-tolerant, but do best in moist, well-drained soil,

and flower best in full sun, but will do well in partial shade as well,” Hunter explains. Daffodils will grow under any sunny location, but they look particularly striking in naturalized settings such as on grassy hillsides, along wood-lines, or under the shadows of deciduous trees before they leaf out in late spring. Planting under flowering trees or shrubs is a classic strategy to limit the amount of moisture daffodil bulbs receive in the summer. When planting daffodils, don’t be afraid to go bold: use daffodils in great, dynamite clusters to provide a welcome jolt of early spring color. The more daffodils you plant, the more people will sit up and take notice. Unlike many other bulbs, daffodils are critter proof. Deer, squirrels, chipmunks, gophers, and other common garden foragers will not eat them. One of the reasons for this is that the bulbs contain the alkaloid poison lycorine. The poison is extremely mild and poses no risk to humans, but some people with sensitive skin have complained of an irritant called ‘daffodil itch’ after prolonged handling. Symptoms include dryness and itchiness, but it’s extremely rare. While any gardener appreciates any flower that lessens their workload, that’s not the true appeal of the daffodil. It’s far more visceral than that. Their brilliant blooms after months of cold and grey are a cheerful herald of coming springtime, offering a farewell to winter’s bleakness and the promise of a glorious summer ahead. “Daffodils are wonderful because they are so beautiful, so carefree, and because of their ability to colonize themselves,” enthuses Hunter. “They are a great investment.” TM Photo courtesy of Niagara Parks Commission

By Martine Mackenzie

The Town of Fort Erie is the new home of a regional, state-of-theart, urgent care facility. Primary Care Niagara opened its doors on March 4th, moving from its original location in Niagara Falls to the Garrison Plaza, at the corner of Garrison and Thompson roads. When the clinic opened its doors 15 years ago on Valley Way, “the city was medically underserviced, but this is no longer the case” said Tim Windsor, Clinical Services Director. This is the truth, as there are many urgent care clinics that have since set up shop in Niagara Falls. On the other hand, Fort Erie and its adjacent communities, namely, Port Colborne, Welland, Crystal Beach, Ridgeway, Stevensville and Sherkston, are very underserviced, hence the reason for the relocation. Dr. Artaj Singh says that based on Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care guidelines, Fort Erie should have roughly 16 to 18 full-time family physicians and, according to surveys, the town only has six full-time and six part-time. Tim Windsor likens the new facility to a “medical campus”, offering such services as a full-service pharmacy, a medical laboratory (the only one in Fort Erie outside of the hospital itself ), physiotherapy beginning in May, a psychology/counseling center, a foot clinic, and hearing/audiology clinics. Beginning in April, there will also be general surgery and internal medicine consults offered which is something unprecedented in the realm of urgent care facilities. “We’re going to provide five-day, extended-hour service,” said Singh. “Our focus is not just on acute care, which is very important — that’s the primary thing we do — but we’ve got a huge focus on preventative care.” Because of the unique “campus-like” set up of this clinic, Dr. Singh says that more specialists are showing an interest in coming on board. He said that the Walker Family Centre is “very interested” in having a part-time oncologist work on site. The words “sick today, seen today”, ring true as Windsor stresses that this clinic will strive to ensure that patients’ medical needs are met quickly and efficiently. Primary Care Niagara offers a flexible access care model which allows for patients to “do your waiting wherever you want”, as the website says. Gone are the days of waiting for hours to receive care. From the comfort of your desktop, laptop or Smartphone, you can check in to the clinic and digitally enter the waiting room. The Town of Fort Erie holds a special place in Dr. Singh’s heart

as he was the medical director of the Fort Erie Urgent Care when it opened back in 2004, which was later taken over by Dr. Hugh Mitchell. “That clinic continues to thrive and provide patient care here under his name. With that successful experience, the town wanted to talk to us to see if we can re-engage and come back to town,” says Singh. Primary Care Niagara differs from other urgent care clinics in that it not only provides “walk-in” medical care, but it also has a Family Practice. By downloading and filling out the application on the clinic’s website, you can become a member of the Primary Care Niagara Family Health Group. Your PCN physicians will provide certain comprehensive or preventative medical services and treatments exclusively to members of their Family Health Group and not to walk-in urgent care patients. Periodic health exams, general check-ups and preventative care are examples of these Family Health Group services. Niagara is a prime tourist area. That’s no secret. So what happens when you are from out of province or out of country and someone in your family gets sick? Primary Care Niagara has the answer. From colds & minor illness to stitches, minor fractures or more serious illness, PCN is the place to go. There is a fee for the visit and there will be an additional charge if any medical procedures are required, but the “seen today” motto applies. The clinic is staffed with physicians who are qualified and have practiced in both the United States and Canada. Another thing that sets PCN apart from other medical facilities is its commitment to social responsibility. Both Dr. Artaj Singh, and his wife, Dr. Judy Singh, have a passion for overseas medical issues and causes, having worked together with Mother Teresa in the hospitals and streets of Calcutta. Along with Tim Windsor, the Clinical Services Director, they established, in late 2009, a charity called Initiative 360 – Take it Global, which helps raise awareness and resources to benefit African countries. This commitment has taken them to Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Angola on several occasions. Every time a patient visits PCN, a portion of the fee paid by OHIP, to the clinic, is donated to support Health Care and Development work in Africa. The Niagara Region is definitely very fortunate to have in our midst, Dr. Singh and his team at PCN. Not only are these physicians dedicated to the well-being of the members of their community, but their focus also extends globally. As cliché as this may sound, they really do all want to make the world a better place. TM TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 105

Full of Bologna The first in a series of four stories on Emilia Romagna By Christopher Balogh Our assignment was to spend a week in Emilia Romagna and capture the soul of four of its main cities. Hired to tell a story through images that would be used by Emilia Romagna tourism, our team was chosen for our ability to see Italy not as Italians but as visitors. Fresh eyes, fresh perspective. In the age of hyper information, I prefer to wear each city. Although we had two days of scouting and an extensive shot list, as art director, my goal was to plan less and wander more. The cities would speak. “ In every new city, bum a cigarette and speak to a taxi driver,” an experienced traveler once advised me. Romagna runs from the Apennine foothills to the beaches of the Adriatic. It has become my usual base. Comfortable with the easy pace, good cycling, and the sea air, I have even developed a Romagnolo accent it seems. I made no conscious distinction with the part of the region that is in fact Emilia, apart from its name deriving from the ancient roman route; the via Emilia. In my mind it was all Emilia Romagna.

An old friend and Romagnolo businessman tauntingly described the distinction over a bottle of San Giovese before my team headed east to the cities of Emilia. “We were farmers, until Mussolini built a villa here in Riccione, then the rich from Emilia began coming here. We built hotels, seduced their women on our beaches. We are simple they are sophisticated. The rest is history.” All roads lead to Bologna? It is said that the largest city in Emilia Romagna doesn’t have any major tourist attractions; it is rather the city itself that is the attraction. Walk. It has a great flow. The 40 km of porticos, some crumbling, others pristine in marble, will embrace you. Sit, lean, observe the play of light. They feel cozy and intimate. One of Bologna’s less known nicknames is “la turrita”, or the city of many towers. These symbols of power and wealth were once homes. Of the approx 180 towers that once stood, only 24 remain today, one of which is even an Air BnB. Walk the Jewish ghetto,

Photos courtesy of Paul Wright

the student ghetto, the mercato di mezzo. Experience the churches built according to a crusader’s description of Christian temples in Jerusalem, the oldest university in the western world, and finally walk up to the Sanctuary of St.Luke, that overlooks the city. Welcome to Bologna. Wandering into Piazza Maggiore in the direction of a famous osteria, a quick chat with some local businessmen revealed a fact about Neptune’s trident. His statue dominates the entrance to the piazza; Nettuno’s tool is immortalized in the logo of the luxury car brand Maserati. Excited by the factoid, we recalled that Emilia is home to Motor Valley, where worshipped legends Ducati, Ferrari, Maserati and Lamborghini were born. Stumbling upon Osteria del Sole, without a map was very satisfying. It is a magical hole in the wall that first opened in 1465. VINO..... a four-letter relic of a sign is the only clue that you may be in the right place. It is on Vicolo dei Ranocchi or “alley of the frogs”. The alley was named for the frogs that still inhabit the underground canals built in the 12th century to power local silk mills. The quarter is called the “mercato di mezzo” (middle ages market). Its narrow streets are crowded. Bistro tables, flowers, fish mongers, salumerias selling cured meats, bakeries, cheese shops; all spill out into the laneways. The nearby food vendors make the Osteria del Sole

experience all the more interesting. In the true Osteria tradition you may bring your own food. Osteria del Sole sells only wine by the glass or bottle. Some of the more popular bottles stand open next to the cash register. It is a no frills authentic experience, bustling with locals and tourists alike. The long communal wood tables are covered with everything from prosciutto, cheese and bread, to an unfinished birthday cake with revelers in tow. It is in the afternoon that you can best share a glass with some of the regular old timers and hear about the history that covers the walls. We broke bread with a group of regulars who shared stories about Bologna FC’s new Canadian owners Saputo, buying Florida condos and about how Emilia and Romagna differ. Sergio, who I could easily pass off as Sean Connery, had an air of superiority towards his more rural brothers. “Oh yes, the Romagnoli, they are very hospitable“, he filled our glasses and smiled wryly. Nicely toasted in the early afternoon, we said good-bye a little too loudly, too often, as we spilled out into the street. Our assistant Helga, (who for the record is as Italian as she is German) realizing by now that she had delinquents on her hands, marched us in the direction of Palazzo Pepoli. . Cutting through the medieval lanes behind the university we promised to return that night

to a swanky Tiki bar that enticed us. “Genus Bononaie," I repeated when asked yet again about our afternoon schedule. The fancy Latin term describes a tour composed of historical palazzos or buildings that have been restored. They guard a variety of paintings, sculptures, and other creations. Arriving at Palazzo Pepoli which figures prominently on the itinerary of the seven palazzos, we were pleased to let Helga head inside to find our contact while we landed coffees in the warm sun. We were having a lively chat with four locals who had joined us when Helga appeared, pointing at her watch and walking as if she were catching a bus. Spontaneously shooting photos of our coffee break wasn’t the dynamic that she expected but it sure set the tone for the rest of the week. My explanation that we needed to work instinctively to achieve the desired mood was met with a hard copy of the day’s shot list. “Viva l’Italia….Vuoi un café? “, I turned her frown upside down. “Helga, come sit down. Tell me where we are headed after Bologna anyway?” even though I knew the answer. After a text and another nervous glance at her watch, Helga sat down, resigned to accepting our pace. “Parma.” …to be continued. TM

For more info visit www.emiliaromagnaturismo.it TODAYMAGAZINE.CA 107


Attractions special advertising feature

Niagara Falls has so much to offer! You can experience the Falls up close and personal on Hornblower Cruises, or visit the Niagara IMAX Theatre to learn the history of the mighty cataracts. There is much to be seen and done here, from walking up and down Clifton Hill, to getting a birdseye view of both the American and Canadian Horseshoe Falls from the top of the SkyWheel or aboard Niagara Helicopters. There are museums and shows to entertain and lots of shopping to make sure that you bring something back for everyone on your list. It’s all here for your picking!

//TOP ATTRACTIONS BIRD KINGDOM NIAGARA FALLS 5651 River Road, Niagara Falls 905.356.8888 birdkingdom.ca

DRACULA’S HAUNTED CASTLE 4933 Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls 905.357.1282 facebook.com/pages/ Draculas-Haunted-Castle/383989021661887

HORNBLOWER NIAGARA CRUISES 5920 Niagara Parkway, Niagara Falls niagaracruises.com

Discover tropical birds and animals as you explore the pathways throughout the rainforest. An adventure that is fun for all ages! Be amazed as you enter the World’s Largest Indoor Aviary, where exotic colourful birds fly freely in the multi-level rainforest. Wander on the pathway that begins at the aviary’s top level, taking you behind the magnificent waterfall and down to the jungle floor.

This mysterious castle far away from “the country beyond the forest” is where you’ll find the spirit of the Translyvanian count at its best, luring in scare victims one at a time. Nestled amongst the best attractions in the heart of the Clifton Hill tourist district, come explore Niagara Falls and then come experience Dracula’s Haunted Castle. We’re always in for a good scare!

Make memories with Niagara Falls, Canada’s ‘must do’ signature experience – Hornblower Niagara Cruises. Get up close and personal with the Horseshoe Falls – and feel the thundering roar and amazing mist. Or ride after sunset for a light-mist experience (that’s still heavy on the magic) with stunning illuminations and, of course, fireworks that light up the sky.




4199 River Road, Niagara Falls 1.866.344.0985 souvenircity.ca

3731 Victoria Avenue, Niagara Falls 905.357.5672 niagarahelicopters.com

6170 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 905.358.3611 imaxniagara.com

Maple Leaf Place is open year round and has been proudly serving Niagara visitors for over 40 years. Now featuring Niagara’s newest attraction - The Maple Trail. We’ve brought the Maple Sugar Bush indoors with an exciting, engaging and educational experience. Includes FREE Tasting Bar, Maple Taffy experience and onsite automated bottling, capping and labeling demonstration. Admission is FREE!

A world-class attraction, for the thrill of a lifetime. Soar above the majestic Niagara River and take in the awe-inspiring Falls and Rapids from an angle like no other. For nearly 60 years, Niagara Helicopters has been a definitive area attraction, enthralling millions of visitors. Daily flights year-round, weather permitting.

The Niagara Falls IMAX® Theatre is where your adventure begins! Located in the heart of the Niagara Falls tourist and entertainment district, the theatre is home to the IMAX® film, Niagara: Miracles, Myths & Magic, the amazing Niagara Falls Daredevil Exhibit, and the best source of daredevil and Niagara Falls history. Get a full understanding of Niagara Falls and its human history through the power of IMAX®.





4960 Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls 905.358.4793 cliftonhill.com/attractions/niagara-skywheel

4960 Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls 905.358.3676 cliftonhill.com/attractions/niagara-speedway

5631 Victoria Avenue, Niagara Falls 905.357-3327 nightmaresfearfactory.com

Soar 175 feet above Niagara Falls for the most spectacular view you will ever experience. Climate controlled gondolas provide year round sightseeing comfort, day and night. From this vantage point you will be treated to memorable views of the Horseshoe and American Falls, the Niagara River, Niagara Parks, and other landmarks.

The Speedway is a world-class attraction that combines the adrenaline inducing thrill of kart racing with the remarkable experience of a roller coaster ride. The course is spread out over four acres with over 2000 linear feet of concrete racing surface, running through a four-story helical spiral followed by a two tiered coaster style ramp that runs into another spiral.

Located at the top of Clifton Hill close to the American and the Canadian Horseshoe Falls. You can hear the screams coming from Nightmares Fear Factory Haunted house. Famous for the number of visitors that ‘chicken out’, they come in couples, entire families or groups of friends and yet nothing seems to help them feel safe when venturing through the most famous and scariest attraction in Niagara Falls.




4960 Clifton Hill, Niagara Falls 905.356.2238 ripleys.com/niagarafalls

5920 Niagara Parkway, Niagara Falls..1.800.263.7073 niagarafalls.wildplay.com/mistrider-zipline

6455 Fallsview Boulevard, Niagara Falls 1.800.899.9136 ext. 0 yukyuks.com/niagarafalls

Celebrating 100 Years Of Making You Believe! Ripley’s offers interactive, family friendly fun for all ages at our three unique attractions: The Odditorium, The 4D Moving Movie Theater, and Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks. Don’t forget to visit our huge Wax Hand Station located inside the Odditorium for a unique souvenir!

Our flight without feathers is the coolest way for humans to soar across the sky! On four parallel ziplines that face the American and Canadian Horseshoe Falls, riders dangle from a precarious 67 metre (220 foot) high vantage point. Our fully-guided experience adds thrill to the breathtaking panorama as gravity floats riders 670 metres (2,200 feet), at speeds of 70+ kph (40+ mph)

Yuk Yuk’s Niagara Falls comedy club provides the best live comedy in the Niagara Region. Our Niagara comedy club gives live stand up comedy a new meaning in Niagara Falls attractions.

A HOT TICKET presentation

LISA FISCHER & GRAND BATON THURS 25 APR | 7:30PM As seen singing with THE ROLLING STONES & in the Oscar/Grammy winning film 20 FEET FROM STARDOM! LISA BROKOP’S











Out & About Events happening this spring throughout Niagara

Oh Canada Eh! Broadway Showstoppers

February 7 - April 13 Written by Oh Canada Eh? and Broadway alumnus Lee Siegel comes this all new tribute to Broadway’s greatest musicals! Experience the best of the Great White Way as this all-new musical hits the Oh Canada Eh? stage. Featuring songs from Gypsy, Phantom of the Opera, Hair, Wicked, Cats, South Pacific, Once, Crazy for You, Les Miserables, Annie, Rent & many, MANY more! Each evening starts with our delicious family-style meal, which is served by our multitalented performers. The meal is served on large platters; so take what you like and have seconds of your favourites, eh!

Art of Nature Series

February 16 - April 28 Visit Niagara Parks Nature & Gardens locations from February 16 through April 28 to enjoy specialty programming highlighting the natural and cultural stewardship role of Niagara Parks along our 56-kilometre parkway. Events include the Canadian Wildlife Photography of the Year travelling exhibit at the Butterfly Conservatory, photography sessions with the Canadian Raptor Conservancy, and do-it-yourself art workshops at the Niagara Glen Nature Centre and Floral Show House. niagaraparks.com/events/event/art-of-nature-exhibit

Just for Laughs Road Show

April 10 @ 7:30 pm See Just for Laughs funniest alumni at the First Ontario Performing Arts Centre. Just for Laughs is the world’s largest and most prestigious comedy festival. Don’t miss the best stand-upcomics when the 15th edition of the Just for Laughs Road Show stops in St. Catharines this spring. cniagara.ca/events/details/just-for-laughs-road-show2

Harlem Globetrotters 2019

April 12 between 7-9 pm The iconic Harlem Globetrotters make their triumphant return to the Meridian Centre in St. Catharines. Witness ball handling wizardry, basketball artistry and a one-of-a-kind family experience that thrills fans of all ages. Stars will be available after the game for photos, autographs and high-fives. meridiancentre.com/events/detail/world-famous-harlem-globetrotters

Elvis Festival

Ghost Walk Tours

Fridays and Saturdays in March and April @ 1 pm Experience Canada’s ‘Most Haunted Town’ during an evening stroll. The Ghost Walk includes stories from the Old Angel Inn, Courthouse, Royal George Theatre and the Prince of Wales Hotel. With North America’s oldest legend and a mystery Apothecary, find out the dark secrets at the site of the only war fought in Canada. ghostwalks.com/niagara-on-the-lake/

April 26 - April 28 Canada is the only country outside of the US where Elvis performed on stage. To celebrate Elvis and his connection to Canada, the Niagara Falls Elvis Festival is a three-day festival of Graceland style entertainment and competition. If you have a burning love for Elvis Presley, then you're about to be all shook up. Imagine three days of non-stop Graceland style Elvis celebration held at a premiere Las Vegas style venue including: • Must-See Elvis Gala Shows • 2 Day Elvis Competition; Grand Champion to be crowned on Sunday • Delicious Food • Fun times & cool surprises gregfrewintheatre.com/elvis-festival.html

Etsy Made in Canada Spring Market

9th Annual Spring Handmade Market

Folk Arts Festival

War of 1812 Officers Day at Fort George

April 27 We are so thrilled to be hosting the Etsy: Made in Canada Spring Market once again here at The Hare. Last year’s event was a great success with over 35 talented artisans and hundreds of handmade goods enthusiasts. Join us for the second annual pop-up market crawl support by Etsy. Come to relax, shop and learn about Etsy’s team of talented artisans, all while enjoying a glass of wine (or two) from your favourite Niagara-on-the-Lake winery! wineriesofniagaraonthelake.com/event etsy-made-in-canada-spring-market/

May 2 - May 26 This festival is a beautiful blend of the cultures and people that make Canada a nation to be envied. There are dances, exhibitions, live entertainment and more. infoniagara.com/events/folk-arts-festival.aspx

Sip & Sizzle

May 3 - May 24 Sip & Sizzle features over 20 wineries in Niagara-on-the-Lake, each offering a unique grilled food and VQA wine pairing. It’s fun, relaxing, and a great way to discover the wines of Niagara. And a great way to forget the winter we just endured. wineriesofniagaraonthelake.com/event/sip-and-sizzle/

May 10 & 11 The 9th Annual Spring Handmade Market will present 150+ curated Canadian artisans from across Ontario, Québec and the East Coast offering hand-crafted Jewellery, Bags, Fashion Accessories, Home Décor, Canning & Preserves, Natural Bath & Body Products, Original Art, Designer & Children’s Clothing, Textiles, Wood and Leather, Ceramics, Candles, Food and so much more! Be unique. Shop local. Feel good! infoniagara.com/events/spring-handmade-market.aspx

May 18 Be a witness to history! Join the Friends of Fort George and Parks Canada for this special events that celebrate the history of Niagara, with an 1812 Officers’ Dinner inside historic Fort George. The evening includes a catered dinner, music, and interactive humour and song based on the early 19th century. Volunteers are brought forward for the reading of the rules, demonstrating the mess hunting horn, and re-enacting the Battle of Queenston Heights. Cost is $125 per person. niagaraonthelake.com/event/69377/event-title



Lisa Fischer Grand Baton

GO BEYOND THE MAGAZINE Get featured content, extended articles and more at


Preforming at Partridge Hall

As featured in the Grammy and Oscar winning documentary 20 Feet from Stardom, Lisa Fischer stepped out from behind the backing mic to take centre stage in 2014. Still extensively touring with The Rolling Stones (yes, she passionately belts it out in "Gimme Shelter"), Fischer and her band Grand Baton have been gaining a reputation internationally for their dynamic live performance.

“She brought down the house in the single best show I've seen in the many years.” – The New York Times "Astonishing range, perfect intonation, mastery of the stage. Her glamorous-girl-next-door quality makes fans all over the world think she's their own secret discovery." - Broadway World 250 St. Paul Street, St. Catharines 905-688-0722 | firstontariopac.ca


WISH FOR MORE Introducing new wishbone-inspired jewelry, shaped for stacking.




© 2019 Pandora Jewelry, LLC • All rights reserved












SUPERSOAKED SMILE There aren’t many times you’re thrilled to get caught in a downpour. But then, Hornblower Niagara Cruises isn’t like any other experience. Whether you’re coming from near or far, take home something special you can only get here in Niagara Falls, Canada.

M A K E M O R E M E M O R I E S . B O O K T O D AY AT N I A G A R A C R U I S E S .C O M .

Profile for TodayMagazine

Today Magazine - Spring 2019