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Village Vibe

news and views from the heart of Fernwood august 2006

Fernwood ... A Destination

Cornerstone Building Turns One

Just one year ago on August 2nd 2005, Fernwood NRG purchased the derelict building at the corner of Fernwood and Gladstone. The building quickly became affectionately known as “the Cornerstone.” In its first short year of life, the Cornerstone has truly come alive. The building has been gutted and is now in the final stages of renovation. The Cornerstone Café and Resource Centre will open in the corner suite in September. Steve and

cial tenants as of August 1st. Welcome! And, on

November 1st, four families will move into the market-based affordable housing units upstairs. (We will be taking applications for housing soon. Head to for more info.) Thanks to all who have made this first year a Bobby of Freedom Kilts have resounding success. Together moved from the old George and Dragon building across the street we are transforming Fernwood and are our first official commer- into a destination.

George and Dragon Gets Facelift

After years of speculation, rumours and false starts, it’s finally REALLY happened. The George and Dragon has ACTUALLY been sold! The new owner is Jeff Wilson, who owns and operates other venues around Victoria, and he took possession of the G & D on August 1st! Persistence has paid off for Jeff. If you’ll recall, we wrote about his last bid to buy the George, but that deal fell through. Understandably, Jeff has been slightly reserved about

announcing this deal, and asked us to hold off in breaking the news until after he took possession. Jeff has already started renovations and a newly refurbished, upgraded Swans-type establishment with the historic name the “Fernwood Inn” is set to open sometime in September. We at Fernwood NRG welcome Jeff to the ‘hood, and see this as an exciting new development in the renaissance of the village square.

Commercial Space for

Lease in Fernwood Core * 1200 sq ft (or two spaces approx 600 sq ft each) * $18/sq ft

*available Oct. 1st

* negotiable lease length (min. one year)

* heritage style building

* located in vibrant neighbourhood core

Village Vibe

Fernwood Neighbourhood Resource Group (FernwoodNRG) Declaration of Principles and Values

Fernwood Square Summer Market

by Trish Richards

Every Tuesday evening for the past 5:30p.m. to 9:30p.m. Enjoy a month Fernwood Square has been relaxed, fun-filled summer evening filled with the delights of the in Fernwood. Summer Market. People from all around Fernwood and abroad are making a habit of coming by the market to get their organic produce for the week, indulge in locally made and fast becoming famous Chilean empanadas, peruse the varied offerings of local artisans, pick up a bouquet of lilies, treat themselves to a neck massage or have their Tarot Cards read. All this in the company of their friends and neighbours as the conversation flows, the music plays and the laughter rings! Have you been down yet? If not, why not? Fernwood market-goer Myabelle Come and join us at the Market in and friends. the Square on Tuesdays from

1. WE are committed to creating a socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable neighbourhood; 2. WE are committed to ensuring neighbourhood control or ownership of neighbourhood institutions and assets; 3. WE are committed to using our resources prudently and to becoming financially self-reliant; 4. WE are committed to the creation and support of neighbourhood employment; 5. WE are committed to engaging the dreams, resources, and talents of our neighbours and to fostering new links between them; 6. WE are committed to taking action in response to neighbourhood issues, ideas, and initiatives; 7. WE are committed to govern- by Margaret Hantiuk ing our organization and serving What is more fun than closing off your our neighbourhood democrati- street for a good, old fashioned block cally with a maximum of open- party? It's not that difficult to do and ness, inclusivity, and kindness; 8. WE are committed to devel- doesn't cost a thing. Someone must be the 'organizer' oping the skills, capacity, selfworth, and excellence of our and apply to Kathy Barlow, the Special Events coordinator for Victoria's neighbours and ourselves; and Rec Community 9. WE are committed to focus- Parks ing on the future while preserv- Development Office at 633 Pandora ing our neighbourhood's her- (phone: 361-0369/ fax: 361-0385). itage and diversity; The organizer(s) are responsible for 10. WE are committed to creat- the event and must fill out an applicaing neighbourhood places that tion form with the specifics. There are are vibrant, beautiful, healthy, also Block Party Guidelines available and alive; 11. AND, most of all, WE are online. Block parties are restricted to committed to having fun!

Block Party Anyone?

To subscribe, contact, submit to or advertise in the Vibe, head to 2

weekends and holidays between 10:00a.m. and 10:00p.m. Those holding a block party for the first time must fill out a Party Sign-Off Form with

the signatures of all the neighbours on the street agreeing to the street being closed down. The city will supply the barricades and you must return them. There is a noise bylaw, so if you want to have amplified sound, you must apply for a Noise Bylaw Exemption Application and pay a nonrefundable fee of $50.00 (the only charge). Try to get your application in at least a week or two beforehand. Some streets in Fernwood have been doing it for years. It's a great way to meet your neighbours and reclaim the streets as public spaces of encounter. For the Application Form, Guidelines and Sign-off visit

Village Vibe

by Susan Salvati

Faces of Fernwood Soccer In the fall of 2005 things became a bit more formal as Fernwood United joined the Vancouver Island Soccer League with three teams (division five, six and over thirty-five). Though they often played shorthanded, they finished middle of the pack. Now Sweeney is looking to neighbourhood youth to see if

It's a warm summer evening and there’s anticipation as a men’s soccer game begins at Vic High. Recently, I had a chance to meet with Richard Sweeney who is an avid organizer of soccer in the 'hood. Sweeney grew up in Scotland and then Montreal and is crazy for the sport. Though not presently living in the neighbourhood, Richard has lived “in and out of Fernwood for years” starting in 1977. Over a pre-game smoke, he describes Fernwood’s long history of drop-in soccer with free games taking place on Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6:00p.m. to 9:30pm at Vic High. These sessions have gone on for over twenty years. The Latin community would also play on Sundays. Sweeney describes comically how it took time to work out the logistics of these pickup sessions since different cultures would come together with their varied notions of how things should operate. In the end, “everybody just came here to play.”

helps build strong community. He recounts how during his childhood everyone played and if you misbehaved there were repercussions; Mrs. Jones would see you, the coach would find out and you would miss a game. Sweeney would like to see the soccer opportunities for kids increase right in Fernwood and in a way that is accessible to parents. His philosophy is that parents “shouldn’t have to pay hundreds for soccer rec for kids. It's hard because Oak Bay owns the jurisdiction for Fernwood.” To that end, he has initiated a free drop-in for kids on Saturday mornings beginning at 9:00a.m. throughout the summer at Vic Members of Fernwood United High for any child in Fernwood Football Club ... in anticipation. For “who wants to come out and play more pics of the men head to for an hour or two. We want to get them coming out and start Fernwood United can grow fur- our own mini house league without costs.” ther. Now the kids just need to show “To keep growing as a club we need to bring youth in and feed up. And who knows, maybe the next star will come from the the existing teams.” Sweeney believes strongly that ‘hood. promoting neighbourhood sport

Inspired by her new grandson, Noah, Elsa Morrison opened Babe in May 2006. As customers have begun to stroll (or stroller) into the Chambers Street store, the reviews have been outstanding! Where else in Victoria can you find the world famous Tummy Tubes, and high quality organic cotton diapers, baby carriers and organic lotions? MUSTS to checkout at Babe include

locally made handbags as well as the funky art displayed by Victoria’s own Rose Couless, a Governor General Award Nominee. As I entered the quaint store, I was greeted by sounds of Celtic music, smells of lotion and lavender, and a warm welcome from Elsa herself. We are so fortunate to have the quality and selection of goods that Elsa has brought into Fernwood. A long time sup-

Unique Fernwood Shop for Newborns

news and views from the heart of Fernwood

porter of and contributor to the neighbourhood, Elsa opened, the Parsonage Café in 1992, regularly volunteers and mentors at Fernwood NRG and now, with Babe, Elsa has added yet another gem to Fernwood. Hours of operation: Tues. to Sat.10:00a.m.–5:00p.m. Gift certificates are available. Babe is located 2201 Chambers St (corner of Chambers and Princess). 3

Fernwood What’s On: August 2006

A monthly roundup of neighbourhood shindigs. Head to for more listings or to submit your event. Make Yer Neighbourhood Nicer

Total Plastics Recycling Day: Sat, Aug.12th, Back of FCC 10am - Noon. (Every 2 Sat of Month) Recycle plastics of all kinds (Styr ofoam packing, soft plastics and bags, and ALL hard/rigid plastics) plus old electronics. By donation to cove r transportation. Support this handy neighbourhood service or we might lose it. Cornerstone Work Parties: Help put the finishing touches on the affordable housing upstairs and retail spaces downstairs. Tuesday's all summer 5:30pm–9:30pm. Spring Ridge Commons Work Parties: Learn more at nd

Special Events

Fernwood Market: The Fernwood Market re turns to Fernwood Square (corner of Fernwood & Gladstone), featuring food, goods & crafts from local vendors as well as knitting, poetry, and art-making demonstrations and informatio n booths. Ongoing Tuesdays, 5:30pm to 9:30pm, Free! Call Sue Mulholland at 361-3372 or drop by the She Said Gallery at 2000 Fernwood Rd. for more info.

Green Thumbs

Composting Basics Workshop: Sat, Aug 12, Compost Ed. Centre, 11:00am – 1:00pm, Free! Compost Club Lecture: How to Compost Pet Waste, Sat, Aug 12, Compost Ed. Centre, 2:00pm – 4:00pm, members free, non-members $15. Gardening wi thout Pesticides Workshops: Organic Landscape Design, Sat, Aug 19; Prevention and Control of Diseased Plants, Sat, Aug 26; Both at Compost Ed. Centre, 2:00pm – 4:00pm, members $13.50, non-members $15.

The Fernwood Community Centre is located at 1240 Gladstone Ave. Office hours and public space open: 9am 9pm Monday to Friday. Kids & Families

Parent & Tot Playgroup: Ongoing Tuesdays & Thursdays. FCC Gym, 9:30am - 11:30am, $1 per family, snacks provided. Mother Goose Circle Time: Songs, rhymes & stories; Select Saturdays (Call 381-1552 t o register and for info) FCC Infant & Toddler Centre, 11:30am 12:30pm, Free! ($2 for songbook) Community Day Parent-Run Family Group: Family directed and facilitated program! Ongoing Mondays, 9:30 – 11:30am, FCC Gy m, Free!

Youth, Adults, & Seniors

Youth Road Hockey Camp: For boys & girls ages 8 to 12. Focus on: Hockey Skills, Fitness, Teamwork, Sportsmanship. Stevenson Park (behind Fernwood Community Centre, 1240 Gladstone Ave .) Saturdays, 1:00pm to 3:00pm, Aug 5. to Aug.26. $20 per person, includes 5 sessions & a t-shirt. To register, call James @ 381-1552, Ext. 22. Drop-in Youth Basketball: Co-ed Ages 13-18, Ongoing Sundays, FCC Gym, 7:00pm – 9:00pm, Drop-in Free! Drop-in Floorhockey : Co-ed (14+), all equipment provided. Ongoing Tuesdays and Thursdays, FCC Gym, 7:00pm – 9:30pm, $2, or get a punchcard: $40/11 sessions. Free Internet and Computer Access: Complete your onetime registration and then get online through the Community Access Program. FCC Community Room, 9:15am to 8:30pm, Monday to Friday, except for 11:00am to 3:00pm on W ednesdays. Free! Holistic Health & H ealing: Qi Gong exe rcises and meditatio n; Ongoing Mondays, FCC, 10:00–11:30am, Free! Falun Gong: Peaceful meditation practice. Ongoing Wednesdays, FCC, 5:00pm – 7:00pm, everyone welcome, Free! Fernwood Autumn Glow (55+): Gentle exercise, lunch & activities; Ongoing Fridays, FCC, 11:00am, $5.50 for lunch.

Music, Art, Theatre, and Entertainment

“Mom’s the Word 2: Unhinged” at the Belfry Theatre: A fast and snappy tribute to modern motherhood. Jul. 31 to Aug. 19, for tickets call 385-6815 or head to Victoria Bluegrass Assoc. Jam: Ongoing Tuesdays Orange Hall, 7:30 – 10:30pm, $2 to play, free to listen. Lee Hamer: Canadian folksinger perfor ms ongoing Wednesdays at J.K. Do Forno Café in Fernwood Square. 6:30pm – 8:30pm, free!

Ca role James, M LA

New pathways are being installed to enhance your strolls through Fernwood. Thanks to the Fernwood Parks Committee for steering this project with the City of Victoria. Work is scheduled to be completed by the beginning of August.

Village Vibe

Victoria-Beacon Hill Community Office T e l : 95 2 - 4 2 1 1

news and views from the heart of Fernwood  

November 1 st , four fami- lies will move into the market-based affordable housing units upstairs. (We will be taking applica- tions for hou...