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PUBLISHERS NOTES The Perfect Holiday Season



A look at the Belfry Theatre

5-3-1 5 Questions to 3 Organizations in this 1 Great Community






Decorating for the Holidays

Giving to the Community this Holiday

HEARTS OF GOLD Oak Bay Dentists Give Back








POVs Community Engagement

The Training Ground of Champions


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Holiday Sipping




he holiday season can be difficult, while it promises joy, warmth, love and family time; for many it is more challenging. The time can be full of reminders of those no longer with us or far away, stress, drama and sleepless nights followed by long emotionally and physically exhausting days. Sadly so many of us lose sight of what the holiday season should truly embody; be it Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Las Posadas, or Santa. My family celebrates a traditional European Christmas and with the addition of my first nephew last summer we will mix in a little bit of the jolly fat man himself. I am the first to admit that I fall victim to the desire to create the perfect gathering. No longer is good food and great company enough, the décor must be perfect, the flowers so beautiful they look fake, and everyone should leave feeling warm and joyous. But is this realistic, how does the host feel at the end of it all? Five years ago, on my first Christmas in my new house my Dad gave me a beautifully bound blank notebook, I am sure there was confusion on my face when I opened it, he told me it was to write a recap of the Christmas holiday at the end of each season. Our memories give us the most wonderful gift and help us to (mostly) remember the great things, and it distorts the slightly imperfect or uncomfortable memories. The purpose of my Christmas notebook was to write down all the highs and lows and funny moments from the past season. That same Christmas my Grandfather had become frail and we were realistic that this could very well be his last Christmas. How lucky was I, being able to share my first Christmas in my new home with my beloved Grandpa…thus began my pursuit of the ‘Perfect Pinterest worthy Christmas’. It was a magical Christmas; however better fitting a Griswold Family Christmas profile than anything you would find on Pinterest. There were tears, burnt tea towels, and literally a dog fight (involving three terriers), but there was also great food, lifelong family memories and some laughter; truly creating a story we can fondly rerun time and again. Every year when I decorate my home I kick off the Christmas season by reading the stories of Christmas past. I am reminded of the things that matter, and that even the largest ‘fails’ become great memories. I encourage everyone to try to find that magical moment among all the chaos and unrealistic expectations. Treasure it and remember that family, friends, and togetherness is truly what the holiday season is all about.

“Treasure it and remember that family, friends, and togetherness is truly what the holiday season is all about.”

I leave you, as always, with a challenge; find a way to build togetherness this season, remember that when you shop local you are supporting your neighbour, and finally think of those in need over the holidays. Have a wonderful season with those you care about and who care for you, and I look forward to hearing from you. All the best in 2019

Dianne McKerrell, Publisher Dianne@yourmagazinevictoria.ca 4 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018




Christopher Kelsall is the founder of Athletics Illustrated, cofounder of Victoria Sports News, race director of the Victoria Run Series and run coach. Married for 25 years, with two kids, and a passion for sports.

Bob Worth retired as Executive Director of Financial Services at UVic and has continued serving on numerous pension and endowment boards and investment committees. Bob is a keen golfer and enjoys travel and kayaking with his wife Laurel.



Ben is the owner and principal designer at Bespoke Design Ltd - a design boutique offering Farrow & Ball paint, wall coverings, window treatments, fine linens and furnishings made in Canada and North Carolina. He has an Honours Degree in Commerce from Carleton University and 25 years of experience in the design and paint coatings industries.  Ben has taught courses in Interior Design for the Calgary Board Of Education, Bow Valley College and most recently for the Pacific Design Academy.

Daniel is a writer and communications professional based in Victoria, B.C. His work has appeared in Monday Magazine, Metro News and The Province among other publications. Born and raised in Newfoundland, Daniel has a deep attachment to oceanside living. He attended the University of Victoria and has a postgraduate certificate in journalism from Langara College.



Devon is a Victoria-based writer who also dabbles as a social media & marketing coordinator for a local business. Devon attended UVic for her BA and went on to pursue a post graduate certificate in journalism from Langara College. After working as a reporter for a handful of years, she hung up her reporter hat and decided to embark on a new adventure as a freelancer.

Erin grew up on the island and is extremely passionate about hiking, travel and the outdoors. After completing university in Montreal Erin decided to return home to their 88 year old family business and is now part owner of Robinson’s Outdoor Store. Erin has travelled extensively and loves talking about her experiences around the world.



The Concept Behind YOUR Magazine

The Three T’s

In the Capital Region there are close to 1,000 registered notfor-profit organizations, and one of their largest challenges after finances, is getting their stories told. Media coverage for them is oversubscribed. Because of this, there are a multitude of great causes but not nearly enough opportunities for these organizations to reach a wide audience to share stories of the valuable work they do on a daily basis, work that enhances the community and the lives of the people who call it home. Some of these not-for-profits started from the ideas of a visionary, such as the Victoria Foundation, others by a collection of like-minded people, and some by a grant from the public or private sector. Not a single one has the same story. Victoria needs to be more aware of all the great people and unique organizations that help to make this city remarkable.

Everybody has a cause close to their heart; one in which they would be willing to be a more active participant. What’s yours?

YOUR Magazine believes that right now we can help raise the awareness of such organizations, and shine a light on the philanthropic opportunities within organizations in this community. YOUR community. The story of each not-for-profit is engaging and distinctive and these stories are all around us. YOUR magazine will encourage the reader to share with us what is or isn’t happening in your community, what the issues are on your mind and how can we help to share information and connect you better to your community. In order to get these stories heard, not-for-profits need to find a way to connect with those who are willing to help them grow. They need people to support them through volunteering any of their 3 T’s.

Support and Sustainability In this issue, YOUR is excited to share the story of The Belfry Theatre, truly the little theatre that could. While growing and expanding, the Belfry has kept so much of their character and charm; truly a remarkable feat. The Belfry offers content appealing to a wide demographic with growth and sustainability due in part to the community’s support. YOUR is pleased to be able to support them with a portion of our ad revenue from this issue. As YOUR magazine continues to grow, so will the opportunities to give back within the community. The larger we get the more we can give back, not only to our featured not-forprofit each issue, but also to the greater community. A win-win; a meaningful commitment to the community paired with a collection of great untold stories 4 times a year.


Victoria is an incredibly fortunate community; filled with vibrant and active youth, a giving work force, and an incredible group of retired and semi-retired skilled individuals who have chosen Greater Victoria as home and a vast group of entrepreneurs of all ages. Each issue of YOUR will help raise awareness of a selected organization, connect people to their neighbours, share event information, and hopefully inspire members of the community to give one or two of their 3 T’s: 1) TIME – Although everyone has a hectic schedule the gift of your time to an organization can be incredibly rewarding whether it is an hour a month or a day a week. This time is invaluable to an organization, as people power is often the largest cost for a not-for-profit and time is in the highest demand. Volunteering can give seniors an opportunity to be back in their community filling a meaningful role, while many students can often obtain credits in both high school and university for their time. Bottom line, your time is a gift to any not-for-profit, and you will most likely benefit just as much! 2) TREASURE – There has been much written about the financial benefits of giving treasure to a registered charity. The monetary benefit is a tax receipt while the personal benefit can range from the great satisfaction of gifting funds anonymously and to seeing your dollars at work in your community and having ‘your name up in lights’. Without private financial donations few organizations in your community would survive. 3) TALENT – Everyone has skills or knowledge to offer the community whether they realize it or not. Your gift of talent could range from driving seniors to appointments, serving food at one of our community shelters or food banks, writing reports, helping with strategic planning, guiding financial decisions, helping clean a local beach or park, swinging a hammer at a community housing project, or taking a seat on a board. Any one of these or other ways of donating your skills could benefit the organization and the community, while making you feel good as a contributing member; plus you never know what may happen or who you might meet.

CONTRIBUTORS WELCOME If you have a great story idea for YOUR or would like to contribute content please contact us at stories@yourmagazinevictoria.ca.




PUBLISHER Dianne McKerrell publisher@yourmagazinevictoria.ca



G 2018 SPRIN

CONTRIBUTORS Ben Brennen Erin Boggs Christopher Kelsall Devon MacKenzie Daniel Palmer Bob Worth











GRAPHIC DESIGN DesignCoast Creative Caroline Mitic & Jessica Thomson










Brentwood Bay Metro Liquor


Brentwood Bay | 7180 West Saanich Road | 250-544-2003 | www.metroliquor.com

PHOTOGRAPHY Molly Grant Caroline Mitic




GENERAL INQUIRES info@yourmagazinevictoria.ca ADVERTISING INQUIRES ads@yourmagazinevictoria.ca PUBLISHED BY MDM Publishing Ltd. info@mdmpublishing.ca Victoria BC

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EL YOUR magazine is published four times per year by MDM Publishing Ltd and distributed within R’S JEW Y WINE TENEGLISH HOLL Victoria BC. The points of view, opinions or recommendations expressed herin are those of E TH T GUID AY GIF the authors/contributors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher of YOUR. HOLID The content of YOUR magazine is protected by copyright, including but not limited to the or Liqu m etro uor.co designed advertising, original stories, and photographs. Reproduction is prohibited without ay M roliq ood B w.met | ww rentw 2003 544written consent from the publisher. YOUR Magazine Victoria is distributed by CanadaB Post 250ad | Ro ich Saan West under agreement number 42992539. | 7180 Bay










Your Magazine Victoria

@yourMagazineYYJ YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 7


The LittleTheatre That Could DANIEL PALMER


estled cosily beside a brick-laid pathway in Victoria’s Fernwood Square sits one of Canada’s greatest little theatre companies.

For the past 30 years, the 279-seat Belfry Theatre has been showcasing predominantly Canadian works that have gone on to acclaim across Canada, in the U.S., Australia, Europe and London’s West End. But ask the Belfry’s Artistic Director, Michael Shamata, what motivates him year after year to curate such curious and thought-provoking content within the heritage building, and his answer is forthcoming.

development, professional development workshops, and more recently, programs for young people, emerging artists, and an Indigenous Learning Exchange Program. “The Belfry started out as an alternate to the Bastion [now the MacPherson Playhouse],” Shamata said. “When the Bastion folded its tent, we maintained our mandate as an alternate but took on a lot of those activities more associated with regional theatres, larger companies. So we’ve stepped up and become regional in an alternate space.”

“The relationship with the audience, no question, is the best part of being here,” he said.

This clear mandate, combined with its regional theatre program offering, is part of the success of the Belfry, and part of what Shamata believes intersects well with a deep appreciation of the former Baptist church’s heritage status.

Shamata, a Toronto native who cut his teeth at companies across Canada, found a home at the Belfry a decade ago. He was attracted by the Belfry’s mandate of producing contemporary Canadian — mostly B.C. — plays, and its willingness to take on roles not normally associated with an alternate theatre company: being a resource for the community, play

“This building is pretty unique across Canada,” he said. “There’s also an amazing affection for this building that’s separate from the work we do onstage. People love it, are really proud of the modern renovation we completed last year to the lobby. Our audience feels a sense of pride in the structure itself.”



While it hadn’t operated as a church since the early 1970s, the company bought the buildings outright in 1990, and embarked on a program of renovation and restoration which was completed in 2003. In 2001, the Belfry won Hallmark Society and Heritage Society of BC awards for the restoration of the exterior. Under the stewardship of Executive Director Ivan Habel, the Belfry’s iconic steeple and stained glass windows are now the architectural anchor of Fernwood’s vibrant, revitalized pedestrian square.

MacKenzie’s Bears, an award-winning Indigenous theatre production, and 4000 Miles by playwright Amy Herzog. “We have a really interesting audience, I think one of the best in Canada,” Shamata said. “The plays need to have ideas that people can take away with them — our audience wouldn’t respect me in the morning if I gave them a piece of fluff that they didn’t have something to talk about and think about. That’s primary. I try to find plays that either give audiences a window into this world we live in, or a window into a world they don’t know at all.”

“I try to find plays that either give audiences a window into this world we live in, or a window into a world they don’t know at all.”

The 2018/19 season is well underway, with December’s play an adaptation of Victoria-based author Nick Bantock’s 1991 bestseller, Griffin & Sabine. Bantock and Shamata adapted the unique piece of fiction that, at least in print, is told through a series of removable letters and postcards. Shamata is tight-lipped on how that adaptation will play out onstage, but promises his dedicated audience another thought-provoking experience. Other offerings include Matthew

The Belfry’s programs include Belfry 101, a workshop designed to help open young people up to their own creative impulses. In a safe environment, students in Grades 10, 11 and 12 from public, private, alternative and home schools throughout the Capital Regional District are introduced to the world of professional theatre, and, through the themes YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 9

of the plays in the season, are encouraged to engage in critical thinking, social awareness, and the creative process. There’s also the Emerging Artist Enhancement Program, designed for regional theatre graduates who have started to practice in stage design and offering them the opportunity to apprentice with visiting professionals from world-class companies such as Stratford Theatre. “We bring in outside influences who new graduates can learn from with different ideas. We started that in the fall with a lighting designer, and a projection designer with Griffin & Sabine, which was funded by the RBC Emerging Artist Program,” Shamata said. The seminal Indigenous Learning Exchange Program is a reciprocal learning opportunity providing successful candidates a period of employment and skills development at the Belfry, while assisting staff in building a more understanding and welcoming relationship with Indigenous artists, arts organizations, communities, and being exposed to other ways of approaching the creation of theatre. “We’ve done some Indigenous plays in the past and done them well, but there’s a danger of being a bit piecemeal without embracing Indigenous learning in a holistic way,” Shamata said. “It became obvious there’s a real need within Indigenous and non-Indigenous companies for

Indigenous designers, stage managers, props people, actors. So the idea is to offer experience to Indigenous theatre practitioners who are interested in those roles in the theatre.” Wanting to create a reciprocal Indigenous exchange program, the Belfry created the staff position of Indigenous Cultural Advisor, filled by Kristy Charlie of the Tseycum First Nation on WSÁNEĆ territory on the Saanich Peninsula. “Kristy has been with us since June, and has been fantastic,” Shamata said. “We have our first participant in the program who is working on [November’s play] Mustard in stage management. We’ve adopted some Indigenous protocols that we use not just with Indigenous colleagues but in the Belfry.” The program is funded for two years through the Victoria Foundation on a pilot basis, and Shamata hopes the position remains in the long term. Last year, the Belfry had a fundraising goal of $1 million for renovations to its lobby and for new theatre seats. Unanticipated expenses have included renovating after a small fire in the lighting room, and replacing the aging HVAC system. The next renovation project includes replacing the 90-capacity Studio A seats.






“And there’s always ongoing lighting equipment updates, sound equipment updates, and the costs associated with a heritage building,” Shamata said. “Thankfully, we have an audience and great donors and sponsors.” Shamata points to the Belfry’s Director’s Circle program as a way the audience has shown strong support and interest in getting to know the company’s staff. “Donors can get a sense of what we do backstage — talk to our designers, wardrobe, stage manager. The really great part of it is I feel I know those donors now. We know one another by name, and that feels right to me.” For Shamata, the success of the Belfry is embedded in being part of the local community, and he’s keen to see the theatre thrive well into the future. “Actors and designers love to work here — those who come from elsewhere ask to come back. There’s a real family feeling in the building, that was here when I got here, and our actors and designers feel really supported and well looked after. The audience is the other part of it, the intimacy of that playing space. Their intelligence, openness, and curiosity is not something I take for granted, and I’m grateful for it every day.” To learn more or to donate to the Belfry Theatre, visit belfry.bc.ca or call 250-385-6815.


Terry@ThisIsTLC.com | 250.589.6247 ThisIsTLC.com YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 11

YOUR 5-3-1

YOUR will ask 5 questions to 3 organizations in this 1 great community with the goal to give our readers a snapshot of some smaller and lesser known not-for-profits, societies and organizations making a difference within the Greater Victoria community. 12 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018

YOUR 5-3-1 study placements, presentations, course instruction, overseas study programs and volunteer opportunities. As these students take their places in society, those with such experiences are likely to have a greater understanding of disability issues and to support increased inclusion and accessibility.

What is the best way to get involved and where can I get more information about your organization? When was your not for profit founded, what is your mission statement?

For more information about CanAssist, please visit www.canassist.ca!

CanAssist at the University of Victoria was established in 1999. CanAssist’s mission is to be a highly respected national resource that collaborates with UVic researchers and students, as well as diverse external partners, to provide people who experience physical, cognitive or mental health barriers with innovative technologies, programs and services that address unmet needs and increase independence, inclusion and well-being.

Briefly describe your program or organization? CanAssist is dedicated to helping people with disabilities improve their quality of life, with a focus on promoting independence and inclusion. Our team develops innovative technologies and programs where there are gaps in existing services. CanAssist’s primary focus is developing technologies that meet clients’ needs in cases where no commercial solution exists. We also offer several programs, including: TeenWork, which helps teens with barriers find meaningful part-time employment; inclusive programming, in which we work with UVic Vikes to increase opportunities for inclusive sports and recreation; and academic engagement, which involves connecting in numerous ways with hundreds of UVic students, faculty and staff each year..

What are your organization’s long and short term needs? Clients with disabilities are not charged for our technologies and services; instead, CanAssist seeks funding through charitable donations, grants and service agreements with a range of organizations. CanAssist is deeply grateful for contributions, as our day-to-day work depends on generous investments. In addition, UVic’s ongoing in-kind contribution – which includes the space where we work and many overhead requirements – makes it possible for us to maximize the impact of investments from donors and other contributors to benefit our clients with disabilities.

Describe your contribution to the community and what outcome the organization has within the community. Since its early days, CanAssist has provided customized technologies and software downloads to thousands of people of all ages. CanAssist has always responded to requests from individuals and families in the community. In more recent years, we have also developed “broadimpact” technologies funded by organizations; these solutions are designed to help larger numbers of people who have similar needs. In undertaking our work, CanAssist regularly works with UVic faculty and students. Many members of UVic faculty have engaged in CanAssist activities in areas such as research, classroom instruction and an ongoing sharing of ideas and expertise. In addition, each year CanAssist engages more than 500 students through co-op, graduate and work YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 13

What are your organization’s long and short term needs? BC LETR members on Vancouver Island are hoping to raise $50,000 this year to support Special Olympics BC’s year-round programs for people with intellectual disabilities. Funds raised help pay for important items such as uniforms, venue rentals, and sports equipment. Gift-in-kind donations, sponsoring a team, or initiating a fundraising event is always appreciated.

Describe your contribution to the community and what outcome the organization has within the community. When was your not for profit founded, what is your mission statement? The Law Enforcement Torch Run movement began in 1981 in Wichita, Kansas. The LETR’s mission is to raise awareness and funds for the Special Olympics. It is changing the future for people with intellectual disabilities and lighting the way for acceptance and inclusion.

Briefly describe your program or organization? LETR is the single largest Special Olympics year-round fundraising movement. Special Olympics BC is dedicated to enriching the lives of individuals with intellectual disabilities through sport. In Victoria, more than 200 athletes are registered and participate in 15 different programs.


Victoria LETR is made up of various officers from around the Island and together they have donated countless number of hours helping to raise over $60,000 for the BC Special Olympics. The LETR is helping to light the way for acceptance and inclusion.

What is the best way to get involved and where can I get more information about your organization? Upcoming fundraisers coming up include the 2nd Annual Polar Plunge \ Feb 17th 2019 at Willows Beach. Free the Fuzz \ May at Uptown and our 5 km Torch Run \ June 2nd 2019. To find out how you can donate, sponsor or Volunteer please contact Sheri Lucas at lucas.sheri@gmail.com.

Describe your contribution to the community and what outcome the organization has within the community.

When was your not for profit founded, what is your mission statement?

To date HeroWork has completed $3.5 million worth of nonprofit renovations in the Victoria region. A typical year will see HeroWork engage well over 100 companies, more than 50 coordinators, and in excess of 500 volunteers, who all provide either goods and/or labour in kind.

HeroWork was born in 2010 when Paul Latour had the idea of bringing 20 friends together for a pizza party to help another friend with Multiple Sclerosis. Seven weeks later 27 companies had jumped on board along with 65 volunteers and 10 rotating musical acts, in support of the case. Together they completed a $25,000 single day renovation with a budget of $380. This experience changed his life and sent him down a path that resulted in the charity that is now called HeroWork.

Our renovations have been systematically renewing charity buildings throughout Victoria. We’ve rebuilt infrastructure for the Mustard Seed, Threshold Housing, Rainbow Kitchen, Power To Be, Anawim House, the Food Security Distribution Center, Citizens’ Counselling Centre, and more. Not only do these builds profoundly affect partner charities, but they also renew neighbourhoods while increasing a sense of community and connection..

HeroWork’s mission is to renew and expand nonprofit community infrastructure, so charities can make bigger impact, become more sustainable, better serve vulnerable populations, and lift up neighborhoods where these important services are provided.

What is the best way to get involved and where can I get more information about your organization?

Briefly describe your program or organization?

For more information, to volunteer, sponsor, or donate go to www.herowork.com. You can also follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/heroworkprogram.

Many charity buildings are run down and in need of repairs or upgrades. Some still need to be built. HeroWork is changing this. Here’s how: 1. We partner with other worthy charities who want bigger impact but need better buildings. 2. We connect with many businesses, funders, organizations, and individuals, who help us with a wide array of construction services, project supplies, hospitality, resources, and more. 3. We orchestrate huge community events in which we complete comprehensive renovations in a fraction of normal time and costs. We describe them as modern-day barn raisings, and we call them “Radical Renovations.”

What are your organization’s long and short term needs? In every city charity buildings are in poor condition, diminishing their effectiveness and ability to serve. To impact this unmet need HeroWork is creating a charitable social franchise system that we will use to replicate our program across Canada. In 2019 we will be creating HeroWork Canada, a new arm of our organization that will spearhead scaling efforts. Our first community outside Victoria will be Vancouver in 2020. In Victoria we already have the next 18 months of projects scheduled. The spring 2019 project will be for Our Place’s Therapeutic Recovery Community. The fall 2019 project will be for PEERS Victoria Resources Society, while a single mom’s transition centre is tentatively slotted for the spring of 2020. With over $1 million worth of renovations on the docket for 2019, we are working to raise approximately $150,000. One hundred percent of all funds will go directly to project supplies.




oliday decorating comes in many forms. I would like to provide some pointers on how to ready your home inside and out for welcoming family and friends and treating them to a warm and festive interior.

The holidays are a time to let your creative self come out. Many look to the seasonal decorating as a time to reflect back on holidays past in a nostalgic way. I recommend adding a bit of nostalgia, whimsy or surprise to your classic holiday decorations. By far the most classic of all exterior lighting treats is pure white lights. LED lights have come a long way but I opt for a warmer candle like light temperature over the icy blue variety. A trip to Butchart Gardens over the holidays gives ample inspiration for decorating the exterior of your home. You don’t necessarily have to install lights that react to carol singers, but maybe wrapping a large tree in the front yard would be nice. Large scale exterior rated holiday balls are a nice accent on a feature tree as well. Consider draping a front window in a curtain of white lights for a nice feature for inside and out. Your front door can adorn a welcome sign in the form of a wreath. Consider one that suits the style of your home the best. A twist on the classic is an overdyed red magnolia leaf option. You can also opt for a square shape composed of fresh greenery. The wreath also looks great in the front window.



The holidays come and go so quickly that I think it makes some sense to decorate your home in a winter style that might be able to stay out just a little bit longer than the Santa themed option. For instance – winter greenery can last a lot longer if you present it along with fresh floral in arrangements throughout the home. The fireplace garland will eventually dry out so consider opting for an artificial option that can be lit with LED lights on a battery pack. The lights will create beautiful shadows through the greenery. The same formula works well along a dining table, a stair railing and of course the Christmas tree. My other favourite decorating tip for the holidays is to bring out some shine. Anything metallic will do. You can choose to use silver, or gold, or copper, or trendy rose gold, or combine them all. Bring out your decorative glass items for some added shine. The metallic touches can stay out for the duration of your hosting season.


Candles add the final touch to your cozy winter wonderland environment. Battery operated ones are safer but feel free to sprinkle tea lights, pillar candles or tapers throughout for a beautiful soft flicker of light. If you start with these basic seasonal decorating elements, you can sprinkle in a dash of nostalgia with family memories, whimsical treasures or even some elements of humour if that is your style.

1844 Oak Bay Avenue Victoria BC 250.298.1105 bespokedesign.ca



Gift of Giving Guide The BC SPCA Gift Catalogue is here! There are so many ways to show how you care about animals – from helping to fund a cruelty investigation to kitten care for a day to ensuring injured and orphaned wildlife get the life-saving help they need. Choose a gift, schedule an e-card (optional) and change the life of an animal in need forever. Visit spca.bc.ca/shop. or the direct link is https://shop.spca.bc.ca/pages/gift_catalogue

The Victoria Period Project makes it easier for youth in need to access menstrual products, by providing free customized packages of supplies every month. No one should have to choose between being able to afford period products or meeting their other basic needs. VPP wants to keep supporting youth in our community. Visit victoriaperiodproject.com to donate and find more information.


Please help Peers Victoria with our Holiday Gift Bag Drive! Prepare a gift bag choosing three content themes. We are hoping to give out 150 gift bags in total. Get together with friends and co-workers and make a few bags or pick one. Every bag counts! Snack Bag: Chocolate, cereal, crackers/chips/cookies, hot chocolate, candy, jerky, pepperoni, granola bars (any nonperishable snack foods). **We expect this one to be popular, so if in doubt, go with this. The Cozy Bag: Blanket or PJ’s (M to XL), chocolate, shower/ bath products. **All genders and all sizes welcome, but most program participants identify as women – please label bag tag with size. Weather Bag: Socks, gloves, hand warmers (such as hot shots), disposable rain poncho, umbrella, chocolate. Don’t have time to make a bag but still want to contribute? Peers will gladly accept one-time cash donations or sign up to donate $20-$50/month through https://www.canadahelps.org/ en/charities/peers-victoria-resources-society/ *If possible, please put gifts in recyclable paper gift bags or reusable grocery bags. Please drop off bags by December 13, 2018 to Peers Victoria at 1-744 Fairview Road (in Esquimalt), Mon – Thurs from 10:30 am to 3 pm or contact admin@peers.bc.ca or 250.388.5325 x110 to arrange pickup or alternate delivery.

This year the YOUR team has once again chosen to do things a little differently and rather than the traditional Gift Guide we present the second annual Gift of Giving Guide. We have compiled a few suggestions of great ways to give back to the community in a meaningful and rewarding manner. We hope that this inspires you to find unique ways to support your community by giving at least one of your 3T’s (Time, Talent or Treasure); whether old or young supporting your community through giving, to the charity of your choice, especially this time of year, can perhaps be the most enduring and rewarding gift you give.

CFAX Santas Anonymous Look for the beautiful CFAX Santas Anonymous Tree of Wishes at Mayfair Shopping Centre, Walmart Uptown, Hillside Shopping Centre and Westshore Town Centre. Each Tree of Wishes is decorated with Santa Bear tags containing gift requests from local children in need. Look through all of them to find the one that you want to fulfill. When you select a Santa Bear tag, you’ll know whether it’s a boy or girl, and you’ll know their age—anywhere from a few months old up to 17. You’ll also know that the gift you donate will go to that specific child, and no one else. Our volunteers will be there from November 28th to December 16th to assist you. You can make a difference in a child’s life this Christmas. Who knows you may see Santa Bear there too!

Every year, over 6,500 staff and physicians at Royal Jubilee and Victoria General hospitals make quick, informed decisions to assess and treat 200,000 Vancouver Island residents. Their expertise and experience are crucial to making these decisions — but that isn’t all they rely on. Advanced equipment provides them with critically important information that directs them toward the right decisions, in the right moment, for the best outcome. The Victoria Hospitals Foundation is asking the community to help raise $3.5 million for 100+ pieces of decision-making equipment that will benefit all patients, from newborns to seniors, across all 11 areas of care at Royal Jubilee and Victoria General hospitals. The list of equipment includes an upgraded patient monitoring system that captures and observes the vital signs of patients, such as blood pressure, temperature and respiratory rate, and allows caregivers to get an insight into their lifesustaining functions. These vital signs are a huge step in their decision-making process and have their name for a reason: they are vital.  A gift to this campaign will mean better-informed, second-by-second decisions and will make a critical difference to care teams and the patients they serve. Help our caregivers respond second-by-second to provide the best care to our community by making a gift today. We are stronger together and giving makes us all better. Visit victoriahf.ca/vital or call (250) 519-1750 for more information and to donate.





Oak Bay Dentists Putting Old Gold to Work DEVON MACKENZIE


ince 2005, Oak Bay dentists Matt Evans and Dawn Webster have been doing something unusually special – tucking away old precious metal fillings and bridges and using them to make their community a better place. The dynamic dental duo and married couple started the project after a fellow practitioner had a child fall ill. “Right around the time Matt started his practice, a dentist shared that their child had been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and wanted to help fundraising for the disease,” Dawn explained. The two didn’t think twice about donating Matt’s collected gold and silver to the cause, but they also took note of how quickly it added up. “When I started my practice in 2009 I began collecting there too, and as we got busier we noticed how much we were accumulating,” Dawn explained. Old precious metal crowns and bridges are cut off usually because there is decay under them or they are no longer a suitable material for the patient. New crowns, made from purer and more suitable gold or from composite materials are used and the patients are asked if they want to donate their old gold. “Most everyone says yes, it’s a no brainer,” said Dawn, adding that her and Matt generally get a better rate on their gold trade ins because of their experience in selling at the right time and to the right person. “We are fortunate we do lots of crown and bridge work, so a big kudos goes to our patients for donating their old bridges and crowns,” Dawn added. As the years went on and the precious metal collection grew, the two knew they had to decide where they were going to donate the funds. 20 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018


“The question came up, well what the heck do we do with it now that we had enough to actually make an impact,” laughed Dawn, adding that ethically, the couple never considered keeping it for themselves. “We knew we wanted to figure out a way to put it back into the community, and we felt accountable for it,” she said. Every two or three years now since the two have had their own practice (now combined as Avenue Family Dental at 1831 Oak Bay Ave.) they have selected a cause for their collection. In 2013, they took $8,700 from selling the gold, topped it off with their own funds, and donated $10,000 to Jeneece Place. In 2015 they donated close to $20,000 to the Dandelion Society, an organization that helps the homeless in Victoria. “We had a stint in the hospital when my first baby girl was born,” Dawn explained about their choice then to donate to Jeneece Place. “We saw what a valuable resource it was for families and wanted to contribute to that.” The Dandelion Society was also a personal one for the couple, and the whole dental practice. “One of our staff members lost a son to an overdose; he had been living on the street,” Dawn said. “That was our connection, and the donation was a way to remember him, and try to create some meaning out of that tragedy.” Other small donations through the years have been locally centered, like a donation to the Mustard Seed Street Church and Food Bank. This year they chose to direct their generous donation of $15,286

through United Way Greater Victoria to the Victoria Child Abuse Prevention and Counselling Centre, formally known as the Mary Manning Centre. “One of our patients, Marg Rose, works as the Philanthropic Director for United Way, and she had always encouraged me to see what they could do. It was an important step for us because we want to be able to tell the patients where exactly the money is going. Accountability is key for us, and the United Way helped that because they dial it down and make sure every penny is accounted for and used in the most efficient way,” said Dawn. The family had a special connection to the Victoria Child Abuse Prevention and Counselling Centre, because their girls had gone to school with six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey Berry who died tragically in Oak Bay in late 2017. “Many of the kids who knew Chloe and Aubrey used the services for counselling after the tragedy, so again, we had a personal connection, and wanted to be able to help any other children who might be going through similar trauma.” To date, the couple has donated over $50,000. So what drives them?

“I can’t just sit back and be that person sitting there taking and taking and taking. I want it to be full circle.” “The best way I can explain it is this: I have had three maternity leaves over the years, and my patients stayed with us. Our practice is as busy as ever, we’ve grown exponentially, and we have three happy healthy young kids. We are beyond lucky,” Dawn said. “I can’t just sit back and be that person sitting there taking and taking and taking. I want it to be full circle. With what we do, the community sees us giving back and in turn they keep coming back to us and it’s beneficial for everyone. Not to mention it’s also a good lesson for our kids, we are happy to be passing the examples of making your community a better place on to them, because they are the future.”

Since 1920 Jennings Florists has proudly served the Victoria area. We are a fourth generation, family owned and operated business. 2508 Estevan Ave. 250 477-9538 www.jenningsflorists.com






or most of us, retirement conjures up images of travelling to exotic places, more time to devote to hobbies – old and new - and more time with friends and family near home, on a Disney Cruise with the grandkids or surrounded by golf courses in the sunny south. We focus on the first 15 years of retirement when hopefully good health provides the ‘Freedom 55’ good life pictured in all those retirement ads. But planning how to finance a truly satisfying retirement requires a fuller picture and a recognition of its several phases. Some of the good news and some of the challenges include: •

We are living longer and healthier so our years of travel and living off pensions and investment income are extending. A 60 year old couple in good health today should plan for over 30 years of retirement. One life insurance company estimates that a healthy male of 60 retiring at 65 will live until 86; a female until 89. Chances are good that one or both will live well into their 90s. While many cannot wait to attend their retirement party and grab a fishing rod on Monday morning, others enjoy not only the paycheque and benefits but also the satisfaction and social setting of their work. They are still fit and in demand since skilled workers are becoming scarcer in many trades and professions. Mandatory retirement at 65 is a thing of the past; more relevant is the individual decision about how best to shape the traditional retirement years. Increasing numbers are phasing into retirement with part time work, consulting and increased volunteerism after the rigour of full time employment. Those more carefree years of travel and energetic activity – usually accompanied by more expense – will be followed for a period at a more leisurely pace closer to home with less spending. This can change, however, into the need for increased assistance due to failing health, mobility and memory issues. There is a wide variety of ‘quality of life’ service levels, varying durations of ‘independent living’, ‘assisted living’ and ‘long term care’ and related costs which are most frequently (and often significantly) under-estimated when


retirement planning. In Canada, 70% of retirees will require some level of assisted living, be it at home or in a care facility. Subsidized care facilities can have lengthy waitlists while some high end private facilities can exceed $8,000 per month depending upon the level of service required. •

Looking out several decades into retirement, and given the rapid growth of the retiree population with its increasing burden on health costs, it is almost assured that the health benefits enjoyed by Canadian retirees today will become more expensive and restricted as the years pass, regardless of the government of the day. Retaining sufficient funds for those final few years when health and assistance costs can soar is an unpleasant reality we should anticipate in our financial planning and spending levels over the years.

A challenge of our times here in the Capital Region is the very high cost of housing and day-care faced by our children and grandchildren. While attempting to save for their own retirement, many feel the pressure to divert savings into contributions to help their offspring get a good start.

How much will retirement living cost? Perhaps a better approach to the question is how will my retirement years be spent and will my financial resources be enough to support it? There are no uniform formulae for determining what annual income and capital is required for a satisfying retirement. The frequently quoted ‘70% of your final salary’ is inappropriate for many retirees. Each of our circumstances will be different and will likely change through the retirement years. What activities, locations and future family responsibilities do we anticipate? How soon do one or both partners want to stop working or will there be consulting or other part time income for a few years? What is the current and anticipated state of our health and family histories of longevity? What are our sources of pension, government benefits, investment savings, home equity and other assets

such as trusts and anticipated inheritances? What is our investment and risk management skill – and quality of our professional advisors - in managing those assets over several decades of financial cycle ups and downs? One idea cited frequently as a good one by those who have done it is to downsize and declutter our homes sooner rather than procrastinate too long. Maintaining a smaller, more level residence, condo or apartment requires less work and likely frees up considerable tax-free capital from one’s principal residence. Downsizing is a challenge especially because of the accumulated collectables and memories, so best to do it when energy levels are high and there is no pressure to relocate due to a fall or sudden illness. A useful checklist of retirement financial planning from the federal Financial Consumer Agency of Canada is: https://www.canada.ca/en/ financial-consumer-agency/services/retirement-planning/retirementchecklist.html Few financial planning tasks require as much foresight and preparation as retirement planning over its several phases and with its inherent uncertainties. Early study, costing, family talks and recruiting of knowledgeable sources of investment, legal, tax, insurance and other guidance will lighten the load and make it a positive planning experience with the necessary flexibility to adapt over the years before and after trading our tool box or business suit for sneakers and an afternoon stroll on the beach. On the subject of quality of life in our later years of retirement is the excellent book Being Mortal by Dr. Atul Gawande, a Boston surgeon and Harvard professor. He suggests the medical profession has for too long been overly committed to prolonging life rather than providing optimal comfort in its final phases. He advocates strongly for home care and hospice services which in Greater Victoria are well served through the partnerships of Victoria Hospice, Island Health’s Community Services and Beacon Services’ Home Support.

I will never be old. To me, old age is always 15 years older than I am. – Sir Francis Bacon

Eyebrow Microblading Eyebrow Shaping Eyelash Extensions

www.studiokanti.ca 1071 Fort St Victoria BC V8V 5A1 778-265-7795 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 23

Rebecca Hass, Pacific Opera Victoria’s Director of Community Engagement





night at the Opera is an almost magical event that many people adore, but it’s also something that has the potential to be a bit intimidating to a virgin opera-goer. In order to combat that notion, Pacific Opera Victoria (POV) recently rolled out a new program that is working to engage community members on a deeper level. The public engagement program, aptly dubbed Co|OPERA|tive, was launched when they produced Missing in late 2017 – a chamber opera by Métis playwright Marie Clements and Juno-winning composer Brian Current. Missing voiced (in both English and Gitxsan) the story of Canada’s missing and murdered Indigenous women. “With that topic particularly, we knew we wanted to offer more to the audience, and it catapulted POV to find someone to do that,” explained Rebecca Hass, POV’s Director of Community Engagement. Hass explained that POV worked with Ron Rice, Executive Director of the Victoria Native Friendship Centre, to create community engagement programming and a template for future programming surrounding topics touched on in the Arts.

explore art in the context of the world in which we live,” Hass said, adding that goal is to build bridges between community partners while also making opera feel more accessible to the public. “I think it’s interesting to see POV as something other than entertainment, and to be able to beMACKENZIE seen as a convener of community is something really DEVON special,” she added. This fall, POV worked with the Victoria Inter-Cultural Association who helped as a community partner providing related programming to the opera Fidelio – the story of a political prisoner.

“These types of events are particularly engaging because they take a piece of art – an opera – from hundreds of years years ago, and allow people to see it reflected in their own community,”

“We were able to produce a three-person panel where we looked through the operatic lens of Fidelio at the current state of affairs for political prisoners and their chance for freedom,” Hass explained, adding that the panel even touched on the process of sponsoring a refugee family. “These types of events are particularly engaging because they take a piece of art – an opera – from hundreds of years ago, and allow people to see it reflected in their own community,” said Hass. “It’s very powerful.”

“Missing really was the launch pad for it all,” said Hass.

For those interested in learning more, new Co|OPERA|tive events have already been planned for 2019, many of them hosted in POV’s Baumann Centre (925 Balmoral Road).

Co|OPERA|tive builds on the work POV has been doing outside of the stage, Hass explained. But since its inception, POV has become known in the opera world for providing leading-edge civic engagement. Co|OPERA|tive invites the community, youth, and artists to think, enjoy, experience, and learn through a series of performances, discussions, films, and workshops.

On Jan. 17 2019 at 7 p.m., through the operatic lens of La Traviata, Co|OPERA|tive will explore the role of the prostitute in traditional opera and literature and the current state of sex work, trafficking and human rights. Moderator Steve Wadhams will be joined by three panellists from the University of Victoria: Dr. Erin Kelly, Dr. Annalee Lepp and Dr. Alison Chapman.

“Every opera that POV stages offers an artistic lens through which to

For the more hands-on enthusiast, a workshop called Make a Scene will take place on Jan. 19 at 3 p.m. with instructor Jessica Hickman who


will guide participants through a fun-and-movement-filled workshop in which they will learn how to be staged into a scene. Many of the Co|OPERA|tive events are free of charge and only require a RSVP through the website “so I know how much coffee to put on beforehand,” laughed Hass. A full listing can be found online at www.pov.bc.ca under the Events tab. With the holidays quickly approaching, Hass added, gift ideas abound with POV. “The best gift for the arts lover on your list would of course be tickets to one of our upcoming productions in 2019, either Verdi’s La Traviata or Emmerich Kálmán’s Countess Maritza,” she said, also adding that a new, week-long performance camp for kids will premiere this summer. “I imagine that will be a popular gift idea from grandparents to parents,” she laughed.

Ian Rye








he two leaders in local industry are technology and tourism; they are billion-dollar industries. The natural beauty of Victoria is world-class as is the living standard, but there is another aspect of Victoria that makes the area jump off the map as much as anything: sport and recreation. We live in an adventure playground.

for running. The kilometre markers that the CRD Parks department and the Prairie Inn Harriers running club measured and set go anti-clockwise and are accurate in case you want to give the lakes a go. Watch out, you may pass an Olympic-level triathlete, runner, rower or WBO Heavyweight Champion boxer Adam Braidwood along the way.

Victoria is the training ground of champions and world beaters. The area is also a recreational hub for the great outdoors, but little may you know, walking among us are international champions from a broad range of sports...

One run I was on - safely recovered from hip replacement surgery - I was making my way around the lakes with downhill ski poles and Will Dean, a two-time gold medal-winning Pan Am Games rower and twotime Olympian pulled up beside me to inquire about the poles. We ran five or six of those kms together. It was charitable of him to run my pedestrian pace that day.

There are few cities in the world like Victoria. Melbourne, Australia and perhaps Austin, TX are two that come to mind that offer the volume of recreational opportunities to the general public, as well as have an elite sporting culture; Welcome to mecca. There are a dozen national teams or national sports that make their home in Greater Victoria, including rugby 7s, rowing, cycling, surfing and stand-up paddleboard, mountain biking, women’s field hockey, triathlon, para-sailing, para-swimming, tennis, golf and Athletics Canada, which is the governing body of running and track and field, they have their west hub here. You may have already brushed shoulders with international talent and may not have even been aware of it. Elk and Beaver Lakes are wrapped tidily with a 10-kilometre trail, perfect 26 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018

Elite rowers have all the legs and the cardio-vascular system to run distances comfortably, so while we ran, we talked about area athletes we mutually know. As anyone living in Victoria is familiar, this town is all about the proverbial two degrees of separation. I asked Dean who are mentors are and he subsequently listed off a who’s who of rowing. I shared with him my story about once racing a 5K at the lakes hoping to dip into the 17-minute range, which is okay for a semi-seriously training master (40-plus) athlete. During the race, in front of me was a giant specimen of a man, loping along. He had more muscle in his two calf muscles, than I had in my entire body - I referred to his calfs as “two babies fighting under a blanket” - you had to be there. The athlete was (and still is) Derek Porter, an Olympic rower and gold medallist, one of Dean’s idols.

Porter beat me, just cracking into the 17s. There he was; the Greek-like God of rowing descended from the mythological heavens beating me at my own game. He likely loped off to the boathouse to practice rowing for another two hours that day. The interactions are endless. Years later, I was enjoying a wobbly pop at a local establishment with 2012 London Olympian Geoff Harris. He is from Halifax,

specialized in the 800-metre distance (track). The 800 is a two-lap heartwrenching blast; along spring or a short middle-distance run, either way you spew lactic acid into both arms during the final 200m of that race. He calls Victoria home - a two-coast Canadian - he now coaches with the aforementioned AC West Hub. Harris is a red-headed fireball of energy. He knows more about craft beer than you do about running. We were sitting with Team Canada rugby 15s player Amanda Thornborough and he says to me, “Chris, you know what would be a great story? One where you title it “Two feet from Greatness” as there is just so much talent in this town.” We finished our brew with him telling me the IBU content and the variety of hops we just sampled - he is a connoisseur. Speaking of beer, I ran into Jon Montgomery, the 2010 Vancouver Olympic gold medallist in the sport of skeleton, at a golf tournament. You may remember that indelible Canadian moment when he was walking through Whistler Village for his post-race interview with CBC and someone out of the crowd hands him a full pitcher of beer, which he proceeded to drink. I asked him how often he is asked about that so-Canadian beer moment. He said, “I get asked about it every single day of my life, sometimes twice or more a day.” Somewhere Ross Rebagliati is rolling his….eyes. I regularly get to hob-nob with various top-level athletes, like two-time world middleweight kickboxing champion Stan Peterec and two-time Olympian Bruce Deacon. Two doors over from our house, a friend of my daughter’s nearly made the Olympic team in the backstroke at age 13. She ended up competing in the NCAA.




Silken Laumann Olympic silver medallist, Lori Bowden two-time World Ironman Champion walk among us, as does Ulla Hansen and Paul O’Callaghan who ran in multiple world cross country championships for Canada and Ireland respectfully. Both are Greater Victoria teachers, as is the legendary Debbie Scott (Bowker). Jon Brown of Great Britain twice finished fourth in the Olympic marathons, in Sydney and Athens. He is the former UK record holder for the 10,000-metre distance. The Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame displays that are located at Save-on-Foods Memorial Centre are filled with friends and acquaintances like Maurice Tarrant, at age 88, he is still running. He owns several national and world age-group records in distance running. He won approximately 250 Vancouver Island Series races over the years, without interruption. Down the hall is three-time Olympian Simon Whitfield, who won gold in Sydney in the triathlon. He plays local recreational soccer. Players likely don’t know that they are being deked by an Olympic gold medallist. He can be found stand-up paddleboarding off Gonzalez Bay most days.

That doesn’t sound so sporting does it? But Victorians are busy playing. There is a culture of sport, recreation and adventure that is exclusive to this city, partially due to the climate, partly due to the proximity of forested trails, commuting paths, ocean and lakes that surround the city and facilities and smaller hikeable mountains like Mt. Doug, Mt. Finlayson, Scafe, Stewart, Tolmie and Bear Mountain and Bear Hill located on the north side of Elk Lake - a molehill like its twin Christmas Hill. Victoria is now home to the Pacific FC soccer team that will play in the Canadian Premiere League (CPL) starting in spring of 2019. Team selection trials are complete. Do we have enough soccer in Victoria? Below them are the Victoria Highlanders, who play the highest level of amateur soccer, they compete in the US Pro Development League. That will be two high-level soccer teams to watch, plus several division 1 teams in the Vancouver Island Soccer League, and there is also the University of Victoria Vikes.

A few displays later is Diane Cummins, former national record holder in the 800m distance. Deacon is in the hall of fame, as is Peterec. He is the Gordie Howe of kickboxing. He fought at least once in his 50s and won; I pity the fool that took him on.

We can ask the same question about hockey, with five Junior B teams, as well as the junior-A Grizzlies and the aforementioned Royals. Is Victoria a hockey city? The same question can be asked about whether Victoria is a spectator city or a participation city.

Our sport and recreational culture is pervasive. Victoria, before the Royals major-junior hockey team came to town and you may remember, after the Victoria Cougars left us for Prince George (cough), we were the biggest city without a Canadian Hockey League team in North America.

More people will participate in the TC10K or the GoodLife Fitness Victoria Marathon, Half Marathon and 8K (led by Olympic-level athletes) in either of these races than fill The Q Centre in Colwood to watch the Grizzlies, who ice a very exciting brand of top-level amateur hockey. Ask any of the players on the HarbourCats baseball team - who are mostly top-level American talent - how they like playing in Victoria and their eyes will light up. They have the opportunity to train at the modern and state of the art Pacific Institute of Sport Excellence (PISE). The University of Victoria recently added the 77-million dollar Centre for Athletics, Recreation and Special Abilities (CARSA) - a stunning facility. Meanwhile on the Westshore Colwood and Langford seem to be leading the charge in providing top-notch facilities for sport and recreation. Bear Mountain just added tennis bubbles. Westhills Stadium is getting an expansion and the areas are complimented by the legacy of the 1994 Commonwealth Games including the Westshore Velodrome and Saanich Commonwealth Pool. While Greater Victoria continues to bid on regional, national and international sporting events via the very active Greater Victoria Sport Tourism Commission, led by Keith Wells, Mayor Stew Young in Langford is bringing in a seemingly, never ending stream of championships including the national boxing championships, PGA Golf, Mountain Biking and Exterra Championships to name a few. These events generate enthusiasm for sport, which motivate youth to get in the game for the health, social benefits and to chase their dreams. Check your calendar for a local sporting event near you and consider supporting the healthy living opportunities that the capital region offers. You are after all living in the mecca of sports and recreation.



Larry’s Picks


Cave de Lugny Millésimée Brut 2014 Crémant De Bourgogne, France $25.99 Cave de Lugny is a highly regarded wine cooperative located in the Maconnais region of Burgundy. The Coop has three wineries with one focused solely on the production of sparkling wine. Millesimée is a vintage dated Crémant (sparkling wine) made in the “méthode traditionnelle,” using only the firstpress juice of top-quality, hand-picked Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes. Pale straw in colour with tiny bubbles and subtle aromas of toast, hazelnuts and citrus. Balanced with zesty acidity, a soft creamy texture and a dry finish! A real bargain at half the sticker price of entry level Champagne!

Gray Monk Pinot Gris 2016 Okanagan Valley $16.99 Here’s one to sip on while you are waiting for the red to breathe. Pale straw in colour with a hint of bronze and very delicate peachy-citrus aromas. Slightly viscous on the palate with a surprising amount of weight and a lush texture, redolent with fresh pear, apple and peach flavours, superbly balanced and just off dry with a clean, fresh finish! With over 45 vintages under their belt the team at Gray Monk has learned a thing or two about getting the most from their grapes!

Larry’s selection of unique products can now be found online at metroliquor.com. Products can either be picked up at our Metro Liquor Brentwood Bay location, or shipped directly to your door. We offer free shipping on all orders over $200. Keep an eye out for the Featured Wines & Beers on the front page for Larry’s best deals and favourite products.

Louis Max Climat Pinot Noir 2017 Haute Vallée, France $18.99

Louis Jadot Grange Magnien 2015 Mâcon-Villages, France $15.99

In these days of great financial uncertainty, it may be prudent to imbibe something a little cheaper than the great growths of Burgundy. Just the thing here! Louis Max is a Pinot and Chardonnay specialist producing red and white Burgundy for over 150 years. Haute Vallee not Burgundy but it is a damn good knock-off made from Pinot Noir sourced from selected vineyards in the south of France. Delicious with simple cherry and spice flavours, nicely balanced with a silky smooth texture and a soft, round finish!

This zippy little offering from Louis Jadot, one of Burgundy’s most highly regarded producers, is everything a Mâcon ought to be! One hundred percent Chardonnay fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks, it is seductively smooth with the accent on fruit and finesse rather than alcohol and oak. Light and elegant with soft fruit and mineral flavours, and a supple creamy texture that coats the palate without being heavy or ponderous. A lovely Bourgogne Blanc that won’t leave you financially destitute!


Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc 2017 Marlborough, New Zealand $15.99

Finca Cuarta Mencia 2016 Ribeira Sacra, Spain $19.99

If you are a diehard fan of Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc, then look no further, Kim Crawford wrote the book on this wildly popular style. Big, bold and bursting with ripe citrus and passionfruit flavours. Nicely balanced with good length and a clean fresh finish.

Located in the remote mountainous reaches of northwest Spain, the vineyards of Ribeira Sacra are perched on gut-wrenching vertical slopes plunging hundreds of meters into the river below. Soft and supple with intense red fruit, coffee and spice aromas. Full-bodied and rich, with sweet fruit and coffee flavours framed with a patina of soft tannins.

Campo Viejo Reserva 2013 Rioja, Spain $16.99 After years of resting on its laurels, Rioja seems to have rediscovered its vinous mojo! This is a good thing! Aged in barrel for 18 months before release Campo Viejo is medium-bodied with sweet cherry, vanilla and earth flavours. Fresh and lively with good fruit character in an easy drinking style!

Fatalone Primitivo Gioia Del Colle 2015 Gioia Del Colle, Italy $23.99 Decanter Magazine, the wine bible of the British wine hoipoloi, recentely proclaimed Fatalone to be “one of the very top Puglian producers.” It all began with Filippo Petrera “Il Fatalone” which in the local dialect means “irresistible heartbreaker.” To maintain his mojo with the ladies, Don Filippo began each day with the crosswords and a half a litre of milk washed down with an equivalent amount of Primitivo. There were no complaints and he lived to the age of 98. Today, winemaker Pasquale Petrera runs the show with the same passion but a little more focus on the job. The vineyards are now certified organic and the winery has been certified 100% sustainable with a zero carbon footprint. The wine you ask, is it any good? Well, as a matter of fact, the current vintage is very good! It is rich and concentrated with a big nose and a flavour profile that offers up much in the way of sweet, spicy fruit that just go on and on!

Powers Gold Label Irish Whiskey $34.95 With sales of over 2.5 million bottles per year, Powers is the best-selling Whiskey in the Republic of Ireland. A blend of pot still (70%) and grain (30%) whiskey, Powers is assertive but light (a real paradox that seems to sort itself out after a glass or three) with a distinctive sweet edge on the palate. Three swallows will have you believing in the little people!

Gran Passione Veneto Rosso 2016 Veneto, Italy $17.79 An Amarone knock-off at a third the price is always worth a look! A blend of Merlot and Corvina, the grapes are dried and concentrated before pressing and fermentation. Rich and succulent, with sweet fruit flavours redolent with plum, cherry and Christmas spice! Very powerful yet nicely balanced with a long lively finish!


Casa Santos Lima Lab Tinto 2016 Portugal $10.99 Sometimes a good cheap red is all you need and if pedigree is not your primary concern then look no further, this tasty little Tinto from the sunny vineyards just outside of Lisbon delivers the goods! Medium-bodied with fresh, juicy raspberry and cherry flavours, nicely framed with gentle acidity and soft silky tannins.

Fonseca Bin No. 27 Vintage Character Port Portugal $24.49 The nice thing about Vintage Character Port is that it is ready to drink the moment you get the bottle home and twist off the cork. Instant gratification can be a good thing! Bin 27 is a superb example! Generously endowed with pronounced blackcurrant and dried cherry flavours, a soft velvety texture and a long sensuous finish!

Vincent Van Gogh Espresso Vodka $44.49 This stuff is scary good! Concentrated with a fresh roasted coffee and chocolate flavours with just the right amount of bitterness, it smells and tastes exactly like a well-made shot of espresso, chilled and poured into a martini glass. Deceptively smooth, with rich coffee flavours that explode on the palate and totally lacks any indication of the spirit that hides hidden within. Consider yourself warned!


Website: www.wholisticchiro.ca Email: info@wholisticchiro.ca Phone: 250-298-9788 Hours: M-F 9-6pm Alternate Times By Appt YOUR HOLIDAY 2018 31




’ve always heard people talk about the Yukon with a childlike sense of wonder, so in awe of the landscape, wildlife and rugged natural beauty. Over the years I’ve watched the spell of the North being cast as many of my friends and colleagues have returned to make this destination their home. I finally decided it was time for me to experience this magical place for myself and what I discovered absolutely blew me away. Everything people say about the Yukon is true. Those tales of breathtaking mountains, untouched scenery, vivid blues and greens, spectacular hikes, northern lights, dog-mushing and the gold rush history are all a part of life in the North. From the moment I stepped off the plane the air felt crisper. I breathed in deeply and time seemed to move at a slower pace. My heart felt warm as everyone I encountered on this trip greeted me with a smile and went out of their way to give helpful tips and advice on the surrounding area. It quickly became clear why the term “northern hospitality” exists and within a few hours it felt like second nature to strike up a conversation with anyone I passed on the street or hiking trails.

The next day we set off to Skagway, Alaska to hike the iconic Chilkoot Trail following the historic Gold Rush route but mother nature had other plans. At our orientation we were informed that the trail was closed due to over 18ft of flooding. It was in this moment that I truly discovered just how unique and incredible the Yukon is. We phoned Parks Canada and with one bar of service and the power of northern hospitality we were able to plan an entirely new trip to Kluane National Park. We bused back to Whitehorse, rented a car, and arrived in Kluane 1.5 hours later. The next morning, we were out of the rain and exploring Kathleen Lake campground just outside of Haines Junction. As the sun danced upon the turquoise and deep blue waters we watched people canoe and launch their boats as they set off for that day’s adventure. Our first hike was the most challenging and within the first 20 minutes of King’s Throne I had to constantly pick my jaw up off the floor. Magnificent towering mountains poked through the trees as we hiked up the steep rocky path. Soon we were overlooking Kathleen Lake with mountains on one side and forest as far as the eye could see on the other. Every few minutes we were stopping to take photos and I had to pinch myself because I felt as if I was on another planet. Looking down from King’s Throne I felt as if I could see forever with clouds casting shadows across the picture-perfect landscape before us. I’ve never been so in awe of nature and I vowed in that moment that I would return.

“I’ve never been so in awe of nature and I vowed in that moment that I would return.”

When I researched travelling to the Yukon the 33hour drive was a deterrent so you can imagine my excitement when I learned that Air North recently started a direct flight from Victoria to Whitehorse. The Yukon went from a far off distant dream to being more accessible than ever before. I sat back and enjoyed a complimentary meal and warm cookie and was surprised when the wheels touched the ground in Whitehorse just 2.5 hours later. Now, it was time to explore the charming town of Whitehorse along with picking up last minute camping supplies.

If you’re planning on doing any hiking in the Yukon, it’s essential to carry bear spray. Though you’re unable to fly with aerosols, it can be easily found in town at Coast Mountain Sports. I really appreciated having time in Whitehorse to do a beautiful day hike along with checking out the local shops and to take in some history at the MacBride Museum. A customer of mine recommended dining at Antoinette’s where we enjoyed a lovely salmon dinner and then moved on for a nightcap at the Dirty Northern Bastard.


Another day, a new adventure. We embarked on our first overnight on the Auriol Trail just down the road from Kathleen Lake. There is something so peaceful and enchanting about being completely alone in nature surrounded by beauty as far as the eye can see. I felt like I was in the sound of music as I danced around the hills surrounded by snowy peaks, valleys and rivers. It’s impossible to put into words but there’s something about the Yukon that forces you to stop, look around and embrace the silence and surrounding beauty. This trip didn’t just bring me closer to nature, it brought me closer to myself and taught me to appreciate just how precious and lucky we are to travel and live this magical life.


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YOUR HERE ROBYN WEICKER Show us YOUR here. What is your favourite view in this community? Send your photos to yourhere@yourmagazinevictoria.ca 34 YOUR HOLIDAY 2018

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