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THE No. 12


Shedding light on the communities from Horseshoe Bay to West Bay

September 2015

September 21: A Day for Gratitude




Financial Advisors Inc.


Sewell’s of Horseshoe Bay


Travel Notes


A Culinary View



Mountains to Sea





In This Issue 3

Point Atkinson, home to our very own beacon.Photo: Courtesy of Stephanie La Porta


onderful things happen when friends get together to eat, drink, and generally be merry. It was at just such an occasion, at a dinner party in Hawaii in 1965, that an idea was born: how about spending one day a year expressing appreciation for the good things in life? And so World Gratitude Day was born. It became official in 1977, and is celebrated every year on September 21. Of course, since those early days, research (hordes of it in fact) has shown the many benefits of practicing gratitude regularly. Two years ago the first Beacon hit the streets of West Vancouver. It was a venture spearheaded by a tiny little band of people who knew nothing about newspapers. But our passion for this place, its natural beauty, and its people, and our desire to share this with others, propelled us headfirst into the unknown world of publishing. And what a ride it’s been. We at The Beacon are so grateful that you are our community. Thank-you for your words of encouragement and the inspirational stories you continue to share with us. On this Day of Gratitude may you find the time to celebrate the many beautiful things in your world.


“Largest independent planning firm in the GVRD” - BUSINESS IN VANCOUVER NEWSPAPER

Karl Krokosinski Micheline Varas Tori Alexander




The Beatles were probably right Psyched Out

Chris Stringer Publisher


Lindy Pfeil Editor


Penny Mitchell Advertising


Melissa Baker Creative Director

melissabaker Please note that all contributing writers for The Beacon retain full rights and that the full or partial reproduction of feature articles is unauthorized without the consent of the author.

Submissions for The Beacon

The Beacon is delivered bi-monthly to more than 5000 households and businesses between Horseshoe Bay and West Bay. For submission guidelines and queries, please e-mail the Editor: Please note that all submissions are subject to space constraints and editing. For advertising queries, please e-mail the Director of Marketing: For all other queries, please e-mail the Publisher:

September 2015

Ian Macpherson


ll you need is love!” Well, maybe that’s not all you need, but it is pretty good medicine. There is an increasing amount of research showing that a cohesive, caring relationship is about the best safeguard of both physical and mental health. When you know you can always count on your partner to give your emotional needs top priority, you can also count yourself among the healthiest and happiest. And chances are that you will even outlive your lonelier counterpart. While statistics show that living as part of a supportive couple puts you in better shape than if you live alone, you are likely to be even healthier if you tie the knot officially. Living solo is, of course, a less risky option to someone who seems to be chronically unlucky in love. However, one who has been highly satisfied in marriage is much more likely to remarry and be happy again after a spouse dies. It turns out that these ‘matters of the heart’ are more than just a metaphor - that the health of the heart itself is at stake. Cardiologists know, for instance, that women in unhappy marriages are at about a three times greater risk of heart disease. But when a patient with a chronic cardiac illness has a loving supportive spouse, their medical management is twice as effective. Other benefits of consistently positive marital connections include greater resistance to stress and trauma. An advantage has also been seen in an increase in cancer-killing K cells around a tumour. It is even suggested by one long term study that relationship bonds have a greater impact on our well-being than smoking, obesity or diabetes! In one interesting experiment, there was a big reduction in fear and decrease in the stress

hormone cortisol when happily attached subjects were able to hold hands with their spouses during an emotionally challenging event. With experimental couples who rated themselves as continually unhappy, there was no such positive effect. These unfortunate folks have very little of the ‘cuddle hormone’, oxytocin, which increases feelings of trust and emotional warmth and which counteracts cortisol.

When the negative results are added to the positive, the antidepressant pill, medicine’s frontline defence against the increasing depression epidemic, apparently works no better than a placebo. So it could be a case of “love is all you need!”

“...relationship bonds have a greater impact on our well-being than smoking, obesity or diabetes!”

Ian Macpherson is a psychologist who lives and practices in Caulfeild. More at

Transitioning from summer Wilhelm Hofmeyr


ummer mania is settling, and what an amazing season it was, still is. Daylight is slowly in transition, and so are we, the plants, the animals. We should all be preparing for fall and winter. The next two seasons come with unique challenges. Activity/exercise: Unlike during summer, where it happens spontaneously, it takes more planning and more discipline to schedule exercise into our daily routine in the darker months. Nutrition: Summer is an abundance of sweet and social foods. Remember to ‘allow’ your body to ‘winterize’. Reduce fruit sugar intake and give your body a break from insulin, the hormone that is required

to process sugars, fruit sugars and all other carbohydrates. Bears survive a whole winter with the fruit sugars they consumed and stored in their livers during the summer months. And all us Northerners need to take Vitamin D. Mental wellness: Let’s not hibernate and withdraw through these colder seasons. We are social beings who need each other. We thrive when we gather together. Reach out to friends, family and neighbours who experience seasonal affective mood fluctuations. Social connection and gathering is stronger than any anti-depressant. If you have a tendency to SAD, be pro-active, and connect with your health and wellness team. This summer, a few special people reminded me of how powerful a positive outlook on life is: it influences the course of illness and disease. We are complex beings. Since the beginning of time, man has had a spiritual dimension. We can’t neglect our soul. Thank you Jan. Thank you Doeshka.

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September 2015



The art of putting one foot in front of the other what didn’t happen. I bumped into four pilgrims in Bilbao, ranging in age from 23 to 68. They noticed my baggie of questions, and so it began. Lindy Pfeil Eight hours a day of stepping sole on soil forges a holy connection with your fellow pilgrims, as well as with the earth. Some days became a pilgrim this summer. Prior to there were eight of us. And always there my departure I had shared some of my would come that moment when all converwalking hopes with a group of remarkable sation spontaneously ended. There is somestudents at Gleneagles Ch’axáý Elementary thing mystical about 160 toes walking togethSchool. We had sat together in circle once a er in silence. Your body grounded by gravity. week for the entire school year, talking about Your mind free to float. some pretty interesting things. At our last Zen master Seung Sahn talks about the circle they each gave me a question, written mind that becomes one with the universe. on a square of paper, to take with me to Spain. He calls it ‘before-thinking mind’. In this state Pilgrims on the Camino sleep in albergues there are no words, and so no way to separate along the way. These are sometimes things. No black or white, good or evil, converted monasteries, prisons, saint or sinner. To reach this state, or farmhouses in the middle he says, we need great faith, of nowhere, and are always great courage, and great quesfilled to the brim with tioning. I walked for 23 days bunk beds, backpacks, with humans from every and damp laundry. Becorner of the globe, all ages fore going to sleep at and backgrounds, countnight I’d put my passport, less spiritual and religious my Euros and my beaupersuasions. Such faith and tiful questions under my courage I witnessed. So many pillow. In the morning I’d stories shared. Perhaps the wake up, reach for a questruth is easier to confess when tion and start walking. there is no one around to be Café con leche with one of the If you read my last opin- Gleneagles #beautifulquestions. wounded in the telling of it. ion piece, you’ll know that More #beautifulquestions can Each of us had our own I have a hard time with be found on Instagram @lindypf. reasons for being on the Way. answers. I’m always just a Our own questions. And at Photo: Lindy Pfeil little envious of those who the end of it, gathered togethconfidently take a stand and defend their er at the final resting place of Saint James, choices with conviction. People who have an many of those questions remained unananswer. I never seem able to commit to an swered. I mentioned this to a fellow pilgrim answer. But I do love a good question. on my way out of Santiago. The two of us had I had intended to walk alone. Spend time made eye-contact at a fork in the road. One in my own head. Figure out stuff. But of path leads to Finisterre, the other to Muxía. course, since that was my plan, that’s exactly We both chose Finisterre, and, despite my in-


tention to walk alone that day, we spent the next 15 kilometres together. We talked about love, marriage, infidelity, justice and making choices. She said people expect too much from the Camino. A road can’t possibly save you, or do your soul work for you. Or make your decisions…answer your questions. She’s right of course. It’s just a road. The Circle question on my final day of walking was, “What quote would you choose to represent yourself?” I was at Finisterre. I had done what I needed to do: eaten a dozen clams. After tossing the shells into the ocean, I found a sheltered spot on the cliff and burned a letter that I’d carried next to my heart for more than 600 kilometres. Finally, in the big book in the lighthouse at the ends of the earth I wrote my quote. And so my walk came to an end. Seung Sahn says that if you question with great sincerity, there will only be ‘don’t know mind’. And as I watched the sun set on the Coast of Death the realisation that burrowed its way into my bones is this: it doesn’t matter if I

Early morning on the Camino del Norte. A warm, friendly, inclusive, place in Horseshoe Bay where you and your family will receive physician,counselling, physiotherapy attention and care.

have no answers. Because the not-answering leaves room for possibility, for opposites to live together, new wonderings to be inhaled. Thank-you to everyone who was a part of my pilgrimage: those who walked with me, those who joined me on Instagram, and those who filled my days with #beautifulquestions. Because of you the journey continues.

Sunrise leaving Negreira, on the Camino del Norte. Photo: Lindy Pfeil

Photo: Lindy Pfeil




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September 2015

My journey on the Fraser River by

Maya Graves-Bacchus


s a resident of West Vancouver, ‘The Fraser River’ has evoked the image of a faint blue line on the map of BC, or conjured a picture of the industrial waterway that flows under the North Arm Bridge. However, after completing a 1,400 kilometer canoe and raft journey down this mighty river, these perceptions have shifted. On August 9, myself and six other women landed our Voyageur canoe, loaded with tents, food and equipment, at Jericho Beach. As participants of the Rivershed Society’s Sustainable Living Leadership Program, we saw beyond lines on a map, experienced the Fraser and its people, and traveled from silent glacial headwaters to the Pacific Ocean. On this 25-day journey, we canoed through thunder and lightning, slept under the stars, rafted through rapids, and hiked through the hoodoos and sweet sage brush of the Fraser Canyon. I learnt the value of

community, and living with a purpose that benefits others and our environment. More importantly, I understood that the Fraser River is not a lifeless resource. It is the territory of salmon that have fed First Nations people since time out of mind, and is an essential habitat for countless animals, fish and vegetation – including us, human beings! According to the Canadian Rivers Heritage System, 63% of British Columbians live in the Fraser River watershed. It was concerning to see how the river changed over the course of our journey. We bathed in the pristine waters of the upper and mid Fraser, but could not wash our hands in the river from Langley to Vancouver. Agricultural run-off, pollution, and logging has turned water temperatures to highs of 20 degrees around Chilliwack. This year, climate change, increased forest fires and water scarcity has been difficult to ignore. It is easy to be despondent. However, big changes can occur from simply recognizing the value of the water. All life is dependent on water, and what we do to our river systems, we do to ourselves – this is

not just a metaphor. By using biodegradable soaps and detergents, and being conscious of what goes down our drains, we can lighten our water footprint. The water of life is our shared responsibility – together we can

make a difference! To learn about the Sustainable Living Leadership Program visit www.rivershed. com or email me at

Maya Graves-Bacchus canoeing in the Fraser headwaters. 

Photo: Courtesy of Maya Graves-Bacchus

Kayaking ladies at twilight by

Carolyn Ann Wray


very Tuesday night throughout the summer I join a group of local ladies who meet at Horseshoe Bay for the 20 minute ferry ride to Bowen Island. Once there we climb into kayaks and climb out of the hurly-burly that is every day life with nothing but the gentle splash of water and the encouraging words of our experienced and qualified instructor. We spend the next 90 minutes in tranquil bliss growing our friendships while exploring the coves and headlands, learning

about the geology and marine eco systems of Howe Sound. As well as improving my fitness and stamina I now understand how much is built on the humble herring. In 2006 the Squamish Streamkeepers’ Society recognized that creosote on pilings was poisoning a large proportion of herrings eggs. By wrapping the pilings in material they have seen a hatch rate of nearly 100 % resulting in literally billions of herring fry entering the food chain. This has led to an amazing regeneration in Howe Sound resulting in dolphins, orcas and whales which have been seen for the first time in decades. As our skill level and confidence has in-

creased we have travelled to more remote parts of Bowen and even kayaked at night by the light of the full moon. For more information please refer to the links below: The Newcomers Club of West Vancouver - Bowen Island Sea Kayak - The Squamish Streamkeepers’ Society - Sea to Sky Marine Trail (Howe Sound) | Trails BC -

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Photo: CA Wray Summer kayaking around Bowen Island.

September 2015


mountains to sea

Movement towards paddle power Elspeth Bradbury


ulian Heavyside lives at Copper Cove and enjoys working as an eco-tour guide for Sewell’s Marina in Horseshoe Bay. “It’s nice to have a job where you can commute by paddle-board,” he says. When he isn’t introducing tourists and locals to the natural splendors of Howe Sound, he paddles his own canoe on camping trips around the spectacular fiord. Julian is a UBC biology undergraduate. His special interest in birds has taken him on research trips to Columbia and, for four months, to the Peruvian Amazon. “The number of species down there is mindboggling,” he says, “but even the Amazon can’t draw me away from Howe Sound.” He shows visitors the latest eagle nest just north of Horseshoe Bay before heading up the coast to see cormorants, pigeon guillemots and oystercatchers nesting on Pam Rocks and on the Christie Islets. “Each species finds its own nest niche,” he explains. “Peregrine falcons choose the west side of Anvil Island.” Thanks in part to cleanup efforts at the old Britannia mine site, the damaged marine environment of Howe Sound seems to be recovering. Volunteers have been wrapping pilings to protect herring eggs from creosote, and their work is paying off as well. Sometimes Julian sees bubbling on the water surface where thousands of herring or anchovies are circling in a tight mass – a bait ball - to defend themselves from predators. With the returning herring have come salmon and the sea mammals that feed on

them. Julian missed recent sightings of Pacific white sided dolphins and humpbacked whales, but harbour seals are common and Steller sea lions sometimes ride the log booms near Paisley Island. “On one occasion,” he recalls, “we watched a pod of transient orcas circling and rolling in a characteristic feeding behaviour. When they moved away we could see they’d killed a seal, but miraculously its newborn had survived. We Julian with a friend scooped the pup in Peru. Photo: Courtesy of Julian from the water Heavyside and called ahead to the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, but sadly it didn’t survive for long.” Julian’s job requires the use of powered rigid-hulled inflatable boats, but when he’s on the water for his own pleasure he much prefers a kayak, a canoe or a paddleboard. “Howe Sound may be small and there’s a lot of boat traffic, but from a paddle perspective it can still seem wild and remote. As soon as you pull out from the shore there’s only the sound of the water and it’s incredibly relaxing. When you slow down and pay attention you see so much.” It seems that many West Vancouver residents would agree. Not many have the chance to paddle to work but more and more are taking to human-powered craft for recreation. A new initiative is going to encourage

paddlers to enjoy the peace and the beauty of Howe Sound for longer than a few hours at a time. The Sea to Sky Marine Trail opened in June and is the first salt-water

Julian Heavyside canoeing in beautiful Howe Sound.

connection of the Trans Canada Trail. It is a network of stopping sites intended for camping trips by self-propelled boaters and, in addition to three existing Provincial Parks, includes seven new tent sites spaced around the Sound.

Photo: Courtesy of Paige Heavyside



September 2015

our history

The Sewells of Horseshoe Bay: Part I Community History Francis Mansbridge

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s Dan Sewell Sr., Dan Jr. and Tom.


hrough four generations, the industry and foresight of the Sewell family has been central to the development of the community of Horseshoe Bay. Born in London, England, Dan Sewell arrived in Vancouver in 1920 via freight train from Edmonton. In 1931, when Horseshoe Bay consisted of a few scattered summer cottages, with only a handful of year round residents, he bought the northwest corner of the Bay from Herbert Thorpe. His renovation of a building on the

property created Whytecliff Lodge, where accommodations, a dining room, and boat rentals helped make the Bay a centre for unparalleled fishing, swimming, and recreational activity of all types. Son Tom claimed that “in the 1930s there were so many fish you had trouble getting to sleep at night for their jumping”. With his wife Eva and sons Tom and Art, Dan threw himself into their projects with wholehearted energy. When the clinker boats they built proved heavy and difficult to row, Dan hit on the innovative idea of adding Briggs and Stratton ¾ horsepower engines, the same as used in lawn mowers and washing machines. The rugged beauty of Howe Sound became accessible to nearly anyone. Dan organized the first salmon derby

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s Roy Rogers with Dan Jr. and Tom Sewell.

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s Dan Sewell Sr. and Bing Crosby.

Salmon Derby, Horseshoe Bay.


Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s

in 1938. This was an immensely successful international festival, attracting entertainers like Bing Crosby and Roy Rogers, sports figures like Ted Williams and Gordie Howe, and politicians like Lester Pearson and John Diefenbaker. The winning fish often topped twenty-seven kilograms. After about twenty years, Eva no longer ran the hotel, but she lived on independently until 106, becoming a great grandmother. In 1947 her son Tom and his wife Betty took over the business; Tom soon became known as “The Mayor” because everything in Horseshoe Bay revolved around him. His brother Art, with his wife Vera, took over boat rentals and the marina, which they operated in the centre of the bay, across from Troll’s restaurant. Horseshoe Bay is relatively exposed, and the bitter Squamish winds can make life difficult during the winter for unprotected boats. In 1958 the Sewells installed the first of a number of breakwaters, which made year-round operations possible. The Sewells survived some difficult times in the 1950s. In 1953 their floating gasoline station went up in flames when static electricity ignited the gas vapours. Then in 1955 the roof and top story of Whytecliff Lodge was destroyed by fire. Tom re-roofed the lower story, and the Lodge became a café and store until its demolition in 1978. In spite of these setbacks, business expanded. More people opted to buy their own boats rather than rent them, so Tom branched out into sales. Plywood hulls gave way to fibreglass, and small motors to more powerful outboard engines. While the advent of Black Ball ferries in 1951 aroused much opposition from the community, the central part of the Bay was retained as park land. The Sewells continued to provide a place where residents and visitors could enjoy a superb natural experience.


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September 2015


The Sewells of Horseshoe Bay: Part II Community Personality Chris Stringer


he Sewell corporate identity of pioneering, clearing the land, building the marina and servicing the boating public all contributed to a “can do” culture. The family learned to work not only with the tidal rhythms of the ocean, but also the tides of change to ensure the company rode the dirty 30s and adapted to the inflationary times of the 1970s. Over the years, the Sewells pioneered many firsts. Besides adding Briggs and Stratton engines to the row boats, they also introduced rod & reel to the lower mainland, and fishing with herring; prior to this, all fishing was done with hand lines. During the 1980s, as coho stocks declined, Sewell introduced the first raise and release of coho smolts. It was discovered that if the young salmon were released from the hatchery about 90% would not survive the migration to salt water; but, if held in sea pens, protected and nurtured, the survival rate reversed with over 90% beginning their ocean migration. For decades the Sewell family supported over 30,000 coho and often in excess of 100,000 Chinook salmon each year in the first stages of their life. Dan Sewell Jr. took the reins of the business in the 1970s and he continued to expand the core business of boat rentals, fishing charters and year-round moorage. He and his wife, Marylou, built a replacement for the Whytecliffe Lodge, and in the 1990s Sewell’s became home to the largest fleet of rental boats in Canada. During this time they built the Horseshoe Bay landmark, The Lookout coffee shop and information centre.

The Marina has been home to thou- marketing program has been expanded sands of teenagers experiencing their internationally and Sewell’s products are first job. These young crew members are well represented at events such as Canthe future. They learn about the vitality ada West Marketplace and Rendez-vous of nature, the ever-changing ocean, and Canada. Megan co-founded the Horseshoe the challenges of the retail pubBay Business Association. In lic. These responsibilities, 2009 she won the West combined with learning to work as a Vancouver Chamteam member, ber of Commerce Young Entrepremake this a neur of the Year rich life exaward, and perience. T h e now serves as Sewell famthe Chamber’s 2nd vice-Presily dynasty ident. “Peris now 84 haps the most years old, important famand the new millennium ily value passed on to each generation,” saw the arrival of the fourth generashe says, “is not only the can do attitude and the tion. General manager, Eric and Megan. pioneer spirit, but the humMegan, and operations Photo: Glenn Owen ble realization that we are a manager, Eric, continue small business that cannot get the pioneering spirit and culture. The business today includes Eco caught up in past history, but must reach Tours and team-building adventures. out to the future, nurturing our crew and Corporate groups of up to 120, book the responding to our clients.” rental boats for scavenger hunts. The

Photo: Courtesy of Jessica Haydahl

Megan paddling.

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s Dan Jr. with Norman Tait, Nisga’a carver, circa 1980.

Eric’s catch.

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s

Sewell’s Sea Safari.

Photo: Courtesy of Sewell’s

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September 2015

St. Francis-in-the-wood

Three generations in this community by

Chris Stringer


he Moonens and the Stephens represent three generations in and around Caulfeild. Says John Moonen, from his Monteverdi Estates home, “You could probably hit the deck of the home I grew up in with a 3 wood from here”. John and Marie’s son, Peter, married his childhood sweetheart, Dawn, on August 1. They met in Eagle Harbour preschool 24 years ago and had their reception at Eagle Harbour Yacht club. Peter’s grandparents, Fred and Elaine, built the family home on Viewridge Place in 1962. Elaine still lives there and is as active as ever in the community. The Pope recently honoured her for her services to St Paul’s Hospital, the Catholic Women’s League, the Family & Children’s Services, the Catholic Archdiocese. Peter and his brother, Robert, were both active in soccer and rugby and both graduated from UBC. Peter is preparing to follow in the family footsteps as a lobbyist. John says, tongue-in-cheek, “As part of his training for government relations, he tends bar

Peter Moonen and Dawn Stephens.

at Troller Pub”. Peter’s bride, Dawn, after graduating from UBC, served a year of internship at St Paul’s and now works as a dietician at Holy

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• c ra


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Wednesdays 10am 4772 Piccadilly Road South We hope to see you there!

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Family Hospital. Dawn’s Dad, Kim, was raised in West Vancouver. He and his wife, Heather, a teacher in the district, raised their family in Caulfeild.

Photos: Ross Penhall

We take this opportunity to wish Dawn and Peter many years of happiness and love.

Youth Director returns to marry at St. Francis-In-The-Wood

es m a g •

• songs

The Stephens-Moonen gathering.


arla Rhodes and Phil Colvin were married by Rev Dr Angus Stuart on July 25. The wedding ceremony in the church was followed by a reception at Caulfeild Cove Hall which was decorated beautifully to reflect the bride and groom’s personal tastes and backgrounds. It was somewhat of a homecoming for Phil who served as the Youth Director at St Francis-in-the-Wood from November 2006 to January 2014 before leaving to work at the Anglican Diocese offices in Vancouver. Many of the guests comprised past youth who benefited from Phil’s leadership over the years. We, his parishioner friends, take this opportunity to wish Carla and Phil a long and happy future together.

Photo: Courtesy of Louise Selby

September 2015


Caulfeild Cove Hall

Valdy - a national treasure by

James Slaney


anadian born Valdy launched his extraordinary career as one of Canada’s most beloved folk singers in the 1970s. His signature single hit, “Play Me a Rock and Roll Song”, remained on the top selling charts for 12 weeks and continued to be a favourite on radio stations across the country for three decades.

Valdy’s live performances connect with his audiences through his relaxed sincerity and warmth. His fun-filled, soulful life stories reflect practical, humble, oldfashioned values. The winner of two Juno awards, for Folk Singer of the Year and Folk Entertainer of the Year, has received seven Juno nominations. In 2005 SOCAN recognized Valdy with the National Achievement award. On June 30, 2011 Valdy was appointed to the Order of Canada by Governor General David Johnson. In a CBC interview Valdy

Saturday september 19th 8PM

said he was honoured and overwhelmed by the recognition, adding that he had no idea that he’d touched so many lives. In 2013 Valdy was recognized with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal. He is in the British Columbia Entertainment Hall of Fame. We are honoured that Valdy will be joining us, from his home on Salt Spring Island, to perform at Caulfeild Cove Hall on September 19, 2015.

Photo: Courtesy of Valdy Valdy will be at Caulfeild Cove Hall on September 19.

Saturday October 10th 8PM

Legendary Canadian folksinger

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“Play me a Rock ‘n Roll song” a rare performance at Caulfeild Cove Hall

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Caulfeild Cove Hall - 4772 Piccadilly Road South, Caulfeild, West Vancouver | 604-812-7411

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September 2015


Digital access extended to Rockridge Secondary School by

Beverly Pausche


t’s official: as of September, all public secondary schools in West Vancouver have implemented a ‘Bring Your Own Device’ policy for Grade 8, which will be phased into higher grades as students progress through their senior years. Students have had access to digital learning platforms from Grades 4-7 throughout the district for several years, and the transition at the secondary level is part of a robust plan to use technology to enhance student learning. The district has been working with schools to incorporate professional development for teachers, along with individual and group pilots and library support, for the past three years. To date, the pilots have shown an increase in the use of collaboration software, such as Google Classroom and Google Apps for Education, a growing web presence for most teachers, the development of virtual field trips, and ‘flipped’ classrooms.

Rockridge Secondary.

A flipped classroom delivers some instructional content online outside of the classroom, and moves activities traditionally considered ‘homework’ into the classroom. Students collaborate in online discussions that are guided by the teacher. “One of the key goals for this work was to ensure that teachers have the training and expertise to guide students in responsible use of technology,” says Director of Instruction and Innovation, Sean Nosek. “It’s important that kids know that there’s a right place, time and tool for each task, and we were very careful to make this a priority throughout the implementation period.” Student feedback at West Vancouver Secondary and Sentinel Secondary, where digital access was implemented in September and January respectively, has been very positive. Grade 8 Rockridge students are being asked to bring a digital device for the 2015-2016 school year, but funding will be available for any student who may need it. Students will be supported in a 1:1 environment that will deepen learning, facilitate

Photo: Courtesy of WVSD

inquiry and engage students. The district is recommending a tactile keyboard, Internet connectivity and sufficient memory to allow for word processing, multi-media presentations and spreadsheet operations. Students will be given guidance on how to use these tools in an appropriate and safe manner that includes creating a positive digital footprint, direction around reporting inappropriate behavior, the importance of privacy protection and how to create, share and publish work over which they can take pride of ownership.

Nosek says parents can help students at home by encouraging them to take time away from devices, providing open space at home for a central charging area and keeping the dialogue about appropriate use very open. For more information on applying to West Vancouver Schools, please visit the district’s website at:

Art Contest! And the theme is music… Scarlet’s Art Scarlet Roth


for creativity! The pictures here are of two guitars I painted this summer with acrylic paints on canvas. If you win, you will be published in The Beacon and get a Starbucks gift card, which is kind of awesome, so enter. Anyone in elementary or secondary school in West Van is eligible to enter. The deadline is October 5th. Direct message me your entry via Instagram @scarletart8.

t’s Saturday morning, the newspaper deadline is coming up, and my mom says I should get rolling, so here I go. I am Scarlet. I am obviously not an adult because I am still obeying my mother. I am twelve years old. I love art. That’s basically it in three simple words: I love art! I’ve been running art contests on Instagram for a while, and the contest will now be a regular feature in The Beacon, so, calling all artists! By art I mean drawing, painting, photography, etc. The theme this time is music. You can interpret this theme however you want. Whatever it means to you! I’m looking Guitars painted by Scarlet with acrylic paints on canvas. Photos: S. Roth

September 2015


travel notes

Tip of Napoleon’s hat to French countryside How I rediscovered the village of my childhood Marie-Claude Arnott


n recent years, inner voices, perhaps a symptom of age, have awakened a curiosity for my childhood village. So I went to visit my family in France. Tucked in the foothills of the Jura Mountains on the West and facing the Alps on the East is a string of villages, all part of the Greater Geneva that encompasses French and Swiss territories on either side of Lake Geneva. My village is aligned with a singular topography of the Jura Mountains, which must have caught the eye of Julius Cesar who first sat camp here. It was formed millions of years ago when part of the plateau collapsed around a rocky formation we call the ‘chateau’. Across the valley, the Mont-Blanc stands guard on the Alps, its Napoleon’s Hat (the local nickname for the tip of the highest peak in Europe) glowing at sunset. Anchoring the village center is the SaintMaurice Church and its towering steeple, topped by a rooster. The rooster, both as the emblem of France and as a religious symbol, is still a bit of an enigma (there are many theories!), but it’s part of the French modern tradition. The church, thought to date back to the 7th century, houses notable artwork of colourful stained glass windows, religious murals, and a vaulted ceiling. In recent years, its bells no longer chime every Sunday after mass; one priest must oversee two or three churches, and rotate religious services. But it still chimes at midday and at six o’clock, as it did years ago, to remind us, as free-range chil-

dren, that it was time to go home. Below the church, a vineyard runs down the incline to the cemetery, but priests no longer make their Communion wine. Instead, a Swiss winery tends to the vines. In the cemetery, elaborate headstones acknowledge the skilled carvers of the past. A sizeable metal cross stands on a few plots, smaller than the ten-meter-high one on the mountaintop where a mass is celebrated every summer. This cross was erected by fervent Catholics in reaction to the newly established undenominational character of society following the Revolution. During the month-long heat wave, I went with my father to water the flowers on our family’s graves. As he shared stories, I realized how important it is for him that I remember them, and pass them on. The stately mairie (it means City Hall and is called Hotel de Ville in cities, a misleading term for tourists!) is situated on the main street, Rue Briand-Stresemann. The name acknowledges the meeting between the German Chancellor, G. Stresemann, and the French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Aristide Briand, after Germany joined the League of Nations in 1926. The German Chancellor’s only comment on the meeting was, “All the disputes between France and Germany could be settled in a glass of liquor”. Tumbling from the mountain springs are charming streams where the endemic crayfish is now threatened by an invasive Californian species. Trailmarkers guide hikers in the forest where I used to pick mushrooms with my dad, and collect chestnuts (and snails!) with my friends. Fountains that once quenched cows’ thirst on their daily trek back from the pastures, now hold colorful flowers. Barns have been converted into stylish homes, their arched entryways turned into

panoramic windows. Mills are idle, and my great-grandfather’s skill as a diamond cutter is a trade of the past. For over a century, the international organizations based in Geneva have brought new opportunities, and global awareness to all the villages. There are 67 nationalities for nearly 6000 inhabitants! The older generation tends to tighten its kinship these days, as their minds open to the changing society around them.

Photo: Marie-Claude Arnott The mountain with its chateau formation in the centre.

Marie-Claude Arnott is a freelance writer and a French/English translator. More stories at www. The ”mairie” (City Hall) built in 1885.

Photo: Courtesy of Murielle Burden

A view of the village with the Saint Maurice Church and the Jura Mountains.

Photo: Marie-Claude Arnott

favourite indian restaurant for many consecutive years As voted by the readers of the North Shore News

604 .986 .7555 take-out & delivery

“Welcome to the comfort of our beautiful dining room at 116 East 15th Street off Lonsdale” - Bhupinder Mroke



September 2015

Back to school – Back to your senses Domenica Mastromatteo


earch the web for “back-to-school” and you’ll be bombarded with advertisements and advice on what to buy. Sensory overload begins! For many children, school can be a place where they can’t predict, organize or control their sensory environment. For me, back to school means my children will be in a sensory environment that will tax their system. They will respond with either inappropriate behaviour or they’ll put up with the environment until they arrive

home and explode from sensory overload! Sounds, touch, taste, smells, and movement affect us throughout our day. The way we respond to these sensory experiences is related to how quickly the brain notices sensory input and what we do in response to this input to make ourselves comfortable and satisfied. Understanding sensory responses in every day life adds to our understanding of human behaviour. The brain operates on thresholds and each person has a specific threshold range that reflects how that p e r s o n’s brain will notice sensory stimuli. When thresholds are low, the brain notices input very quickly. When thresholds are high, the brain takes a longer time to accumulate enough input to create an action. Individuals with higher thresholds need more sensory input to notice what is going on. For example, people with higher thresholds for visual input “will want bright, flooding light in the room and lots of contrast,” writes Winnie Dunn in Living Sensationally: Understanding your Senses. Those who are “more sensitive to visual input will be bothered by brightness, high contrast, and unfamiliar patterns.” For children sensitive to visual input (or with low thresholds), spending the day in a bright, colourful classroom filled with posters on the wall will leave them exhausted. Children with high thresholds, on the other hand, will be delighted and alert and ready to learn, but when placed in a low light, monochromatic room they

“For me, back to school means my children will be in a sensory environment that will tax their system.”

This mixed media piece painted with acrylic paint and drawn in Indian black ink, entitled “Stages”, was painted by 15 year old Morgan van der Horst. Morgan is passionate about art and is exploring her options of art institutes to attend in the future.

re did all the dogs go? e h W They’re here at NOAH’S BARQUE, where dogs get long hikes or leisurely walks depending on age and size, both on or off leash, as well as fun time or quiet time - what ever your dog needs.

COME OUT & PLAY! We’ve been in the doggy daycare business for 15 years! OPEN Monday to Friday 7:30am-6pm 1835 Ambleside Lane, West Vancouver | 604-926-5575

find it difficult to stay alert. In an effort to self-regulate, and pay attention, they may become a distraction to the rest of the class and be viewed as having behavioural issues. Information from visual input is associated with just one sense. We have eight senses! And everyone has a different threshold for each sense. Try accommodating for that in a classroom – impossible! The best we can do (as parents) is try to understand our children’s sensory systems, get to know the environment

they face at school, and help them learn to self-regulate in a way that will minimize distraction. When we tune into the senses, daily life is much simpler. (For more information and a summary of all eight senses, read my latest blog post on Domenica Mastromatteo, CPDPE, MSc is a Certified Positive Discipline Parenting Educator (CPDPE).

Fifty years in Caulfeild - Part 4 by

Ann Frost


ummertime, and the living is easy…” Long, lazy days and warm, gentle nights. Flowers growing in everyone’s gardens. Blackberries along the sides of the roads. Swimming off Caulfeild Rocks or in the little beaches along the foreshore. Waiting for high tide in the afternoons, for the water to rinse over the sunheated rocks, making it warm enough for swimming. Donning tennis shoes so that you don’t totally destroy your feet on barnacles and rocks. Going to the diving rock, midway between the beach off Erwin Drive and Caulfield beach, to join the kids diving into the water and coming up sputtering and laughing. And feeling free of parental supervision because you’re with friends and that’s safe! Eating dinner outside, even if you’re close to the ocean because the evenings are so balmy. Building sand castles and sand dikes to protect them from the incoming tide. Crafting rafts from the plentiful supply of driftwood on the beaches.

A few years after we moved to West Vancouver, two boys came to stay just across Cypress Creek from Erwin Drive. They bracketed our son in age and the three of them set to work to build rafts on the beach. They weren’t satisfied with just small rafts to paddle about in although they each had one of those. They built a huge raft which had to be anchored in the deeper water and then used the small rafts to take them out to the big raft. The big raft even had a storage locker! Raft building occupied them day after day throughout summer. The only time we saw our son was when he was hungry, or the three of them ran out of nails! A sandwich and a quick trip to the hardware store answered both those needs. And now summer is almost over. The nights are drawing in. It’s getting too cool to eat dinner outside, especially if you are near the sea. School beckons. Those long, lazy days and warm, gentle evenings are coming to a close. But the memories linger. Whether we are remembering this summer, or summers from years gone by, our memories are sweet and familiar. And we are eternally grateful for them.

September 2015


Things to do on the ‘Shore and more by

Susie Moore


very Thursday, 7-9pm, Rock Choir: Impromptu Drop-in choir, singing classic & contemporary songs. Open to adults with all musical abilities (no need to read music & no auditions). $10.00 fee. or 604-613-6842 Fiona or Matt.

Sept. 7, 12-5pm, Music in the Park: Capilano River Regional Park. Music, visiting local artists at work & free activities for kids. Sept 12, 6-10pm, Beer by the Pier: The Pipe Shop at Shipbuilders’ Square. Local craft beer tasting, music by Adam Woodall Band & great food by Smoke & Bones. In Support of Family Services of the North Shore.

Sept 13, 10am-2pm, Coho Festival, Ambleside Park. And 14km Coho Run. Info: at Sept 19, ‘Valdi’. Canadian folksinging legend. Tickets at: Sept 19-30, Artists for Conservation Festival: Grouse Mountain. Art exhibit, music, films, lectures, workshops for youth and adults, live painting demos. Info: http:// Sept 19-20, 10am-4pm, Country Celebration: Campbell Valley Regional Park. $3 adults, $2 child, (under 6 years or over 65 free) Local food, music, jugglers, clowns, Scottish dancing, horse-drawn wagon rides, crafts, etc. Bring your own mug and shopping bag. Info. Oct 3-4, Pumpkin Festival. For more info:

The god of small children Rafe Reminiscing Rafe Mair


he North Vancouver ferries transported shipyard workers from Vancouver to North Vancouver shipyards and back during the war. The workers made the immense wage of $1.00 per hour and when the shift ended in North Vancouver, they flew onto the boat and, within seconds, crap games had developed all over the decks! Cousin Hugh and I, along with other St. George’s pals, used to take the ferry on a Saturday to explore one of the North Shore rivers: the Capilano, the Lynn, or the Seymour. We’d pack lunches and have a free-

wheeling time that is, sad to say, no longer open to kids in these safety-conscious days. It’s amazing what we did – things which would have horrified our parents had they known. There’s a spot on Lynn Creek, now out of bounds to anyone because it is so dangerous, where we used to swing on a rope across the river and never thought anything about it. Mercifully, none of us was ever hurt. There must have been a special kids’ god who looked after us while we did dangerous things, including hitchhiking wherever we went - girls as well as boys. Most parents nowadays forbid their children to play with firecrackers and there are strict rules about selling them to kids. For us, no such rules existed, and we bought fireworks, including skyrockets and Roman Candles, using them to our hearts’ content for war games! A special god indeed.

Oct 10, ‘Souled Out’. One of Vancouver’s favourite R&B dance bands. Tickets: www.

Photo: Courtesy of RCM SAR Congratulations to the wonderful volunteers from the Horseshoe Bay unit of Royal Canadian Marine Search & Rescue for raising $17,000 during a fun evening.

Dinner on the Dock 2015.

Photo: Courtesy of RCM SAR



September 2015

Home & Living Butt e

The End of an Era




Soup 1 tbsp (15 ml) with Serves olive o Swiss 6-8 2 onio il ns, cho Chee p p e d 4 clove se s garlic 1  buttern despite the changing faces, the motto , minc 2 tsp ( u e t d s qu 1 kg), pe is still the same: “Simple recipes with or 1 tb 0 ml) dried r eled an ash (about 2 osema sp (15 d cube 1 2  r ta m y d (1 in /2 lbs/1.25 ,c gourmet results”. rt apple l) chop 1/2 ts ch/2.5 ped fre rumbled s ( p (2 m p s u e ch as G eled an cm) sh l) crac Try their great fall soup in your d coar r 5 cups ked bla sely ch anny Smith) salt (o (1.25 c k p , o slow cooker! e p p L p chicke ped tional) percor n broth ) ready-to-us ns 1 cup e vege Maureen Goulet Topped with melted cheese, ( 250 m table o l) shre r 1/2 cu dded S this creamy and delicious soup is 1. In a p (125 wiss ch skillet, ( ml) fin o p eese ti heat oil onal) an ideal antidote to a ely cho softene over m d, abou pped w e d iu T t alnuts m heat ransfer 3 minu orty years ago a group of blustery day. Serve refrigera to a large (min tes. Add garlic for 30 second eight ladies from Calgary it as a light main s , te im . ro A d u d s for up to m em d 2. Stir in 2 days 5-quart) slow ary and pepp onions and co wrote and self-published course, accompasq at this p ok, cooker. erc tender. uash and app o A in dd stoc orns and cook stirring until t.) les. Co nied by a green a cookbook that became an ink. (Sou ver and 3. Preh p can b , stirring for 1 cook on eat m e coole salad and whole stitution that wove itself into low for do this broiler. Workin d, cove inute. 8 hours in red and or on h the fabric of Canadian life. I’m grain bread or as a cheese the stonewa g in batches, igh for p re and Pe 4 hours pper to using an imm urée soup usin 4. Broil sure we all have at least one starter to a more , until s taste. until ch g a food ersion b quash is e le p e o ro s n n e d c High, a melts, or two copies of The Best of substantial meal. e e r) s s . o L r a or blen dle into about 2 bout 1 der. minute ovenpro m Courtesy of Bridge. Now down to just four per batc inutes. (You of bowls (You can als c o h.) Spri . Sprink Best of Bridge of the original eight, they are nkle wit an also do this le with h walnu in a mic ts (if us rowave Home Cooking by ready to hand over the reins to ing). oven, in Butternut Apple Squash Soup. batche the next generation. Best of Bridge © 2015 www. s, Photo: Colin Erricson Mary Halpen, one of the Reprinted with Maureen Goulet is & Mark T. Shapiro

A Culinary View


original authors, is doing one last promotional tour with Julie Van Rosendaaal, one of the new Best of Bridge ladies. They will be in town to promote their new cookbook, Home Cooking. And

permission. Available where books are sold. If you would like to meet these lovely ladies they will be at Ambrosia on October 7.

the owner of Ambrosia Cooking School. To share great Chefs’ culinary secrets, visit

Community resource, “Every Day Counts” Tisha Bryant


nd of life is a difficult subject. Michael A. Singer, in his book, The Untethered Soul, writes “don’t get uptight about it (death). Instead, let this knowledge help you live every

moment of your life fully because every moment matters.” I recently began volunteering in palliative care on the North Shore and a wonderful program came to my attention. Presented by North Shore Hospice and VCH North Shore Palliative Care, Every Day Counts is free for patients and families facing serious illness and provides information, relaxation and pampering sessions, yoga and counselling support. The program is progressive and flexible, and can be tailored to

suit the individual needs of patients, their families and care-givers. Death, after all, is the one sure thing about life. But we are often ill-equipped to deal with it. Every Day Counts is a wonderful community resource, providing support and guidance for patients of all ages. The program runs until December 14, with sessions from 10am until noon. A new session begins in January 2016. For more information or to make a donation please call (604)984-3743 or email 101-1305 Welch Street, North VaNcouVer MOBILE: 604.790.0472 OFFICE: 778.340.1355

Integrity and craftsmanship on Vancouver’s North Shore

September 2015


Maximizing money with back to school tips Armchair Accountant Rebecca van der Horst


ids are heading back to school and tuitions can be costly enough, but with a new year comes new technology requirements, a new wardrobe and extra-curricular activities. The list just goes on. Here are some tips to ensure you have maximized

some of the government grants that may be available to your family: UCCB - As early as July, 2015 and retroactive to January 1, 2015, families will receive a new Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) for each child between the ages of 6 and 17 of $60/month. The monthly rate families will receive for each child under six will increase to $160/month. Wondering what to do with the extra cash? RESP - Top up your child’s Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). The Federal Government’s Education Savings Grant pro-

gram pays a 20% grant on your contributions, to a maximum of $500/year. Check the CRA website to see if you are eligible www.cra-arc. BC Healthy Kids Program - In B.C., this program helps low income families with costs of basic dental care and prescription eyewear for eligible MSP clients with dependent children under 19. The basic dental covers $1,400 per child every 2 years. The optical covers a pair of prescription eyeglasses once in a twelve-month period, to a maximum. MSP Premiums - In B.C., premiums are

payable for MSP coverage and are based on family size and income. For example, effective January 1, 2015 a family of three with an adjusted net income of under $30,000, will pay $102.40 per month. The same family with income over $30,000, pays $144.00 per month. For more information on BC Healthy Kids or MSP, call 1.800.663.7100 Rebecca lives and works in Caulfeild www.

Glenn’s Gallery S ES GU IS TH T SPO

Look for the answer in the next edition of

Last edition answer: West Van Yacht Club


“Bleeding Hearts”

“Sewell’s Horseshoe Bay pier”

“Horseshoe Bay Panorama”

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September 2015


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