‹ Back  






October 2008

>> This entire issue is available as an 11MB PDF download

Table of Contents

In This Issue
Movers and Shakers
So you think you can dance?
Rocksalt includes Powell River poet
The adventures of a young heiress
A park for the people: Millennium Park
Working together to conquer fear
Making things work at work
Peter Legge, an inspiration for everyone
Business Connections
Sometimes you just know
Patricia Theatre celebrates with big birthday bash
Powell River hospital staff are the best!
For Art's Sake
Trick-or-treating at the Town Center mall
Point of VIU
Kenny a funny film for fundraiser
Writers' offer their wisdom on Nov 1
Family Matters: Business is a lot like a marriage
CAT Scan update
Car care is not just for guys
Save money, save your vehicle
South harbour vital for visitors and commercial fleet
Faces of Education
Powell River Picks
Explore Powell River


In This Issue
It’s all about business
By Isabelle Southcott

Powell River is a great place to do business and this issue highlights just some of the people and businesses that make it that way.

Small business week is October 19-25 and it is a great time to celebrate the many ways in which small business contributes to this community.

Many of you have heard about the Powell River Business Fair on Friday, October 24 at Brooks Secondary School. Here at Powell River Living we are pretty excited about the line up of terrific speakers and the day we have planned. We are especially excited that businessman and internationally sought after speaker Peter Legge and his daughter Rebecca, also an accomplished speaker and dynamic and successful businesswoman, will be our keynote speakers!

In life, as in business, never stop learning. Read. Take courses. Find mentors. Hang out with people you admire. Spend time with people who are better than you are and from whom you can learn. Join a club or an organization. Stretch your mind. Get out of your comfort zone.

Never underestimate the power of networking. You are your business and every time you are out in public you are the face of your business so dress and act appropriately. You may not pick up new business immediately but people who network effectively have an impact. It may take time before Joe, who you talked to at the Chamber of Commerce luncheon last spring, calls you up to order new skydiving gear but he called you and not the other skydiving gear supplier because he remembered you.

Business is the cornerstone of our community and Powell River Living salutes the five movers and shakers we have interviewed for this issue.

If you are interested in learning more about self-employment, be sure to check Community Futures. They can answer your questions, give you lots of information and run monthly self-employment workshops.

Election fever is running high these days with both a federal and a city election just around the corner. How will the results affect business? Be sure to attend the all candidates meeting hosted by the chamber October 30 and find out what local politicians platforms are on various issues and make your vote an informed vote.

Home-based businesses are an important part of Powell River’s small business community—after all Powell River Living Magazine is a home-based business.

Disabilities in the workplace is another area where many of us need to be more educated. With Vicky Lundine speaking at the business fair, we will have the chance to learn about the benefits for both the employee and the employer.





Movers and Shakers
Meet some of the young people in Powell River who are making things happen
By Isabelle Southcott

There’s young blood pumping through the veins of Powell River’s business community. The economic future of this city will one day rest on their shoulders. Powell River Living Magazine recognizes the innovative spirit and business acumen of these young people and recently interviewed five young movers and shakers who are changing the face of business.

Mayor Stewart Alsgard is highly supportive of young people in business and Emerging Leaders, an organization for business people and leaders under the age of 35.

“It’s hugely important we recognize the initiative young people demonstrate.”

From managers, to entrepreneurs to key personnel, good employees and business owners with a vision play a key role in Powell River’s future.

Entrepreneurs play a key role in determining the economic health of a community. “Heaven forbid we lose that kind of young blood. It’s vital to the survival of the community. This is not the exclusive domain of retirement. This community is full of opportunities for all ages,” said Alsgard.

“We need to create a culture of entrepreneurship. It’s not longer what it was 30 or 40 years ago, when there was an assurance of succession (to jobs at the mill).

“The entrepreneur sees opportunities. Every day something comes along. The entrepreneurial spirit listens,” said Alsgard.


Andy Evans
Doing what it takes
From snow shovelling to hiring staff

Background • Born & raised in Powell River; graduate Max Cameron High School.
Title • Manager, Town Centre Mall
Age • 37
Years in Business • 24

Andy EvansAndy Evans does what it takes to get the job done.

To many, he’s the face of the Town Centre Mall and no wonder; he’s been with the Town Centre Mall for almost 20 years. But Evans hasn’t always managed the mall, far from it.

Evans was first introduced to the company that owns the Town Centre Mall when he was 17 years old. He assembled bikes for Sports International at the mall while going to school then just after he graduated in 1990, Mike Foley of Town Centre TV recruited Evans. “I worked there (at Town Centre TV) until early 2001 then I moved to Vancouver to work for a company that Town Centre TV bought from doing inside sales and service.”

That job lasted 10 months. “I was a casualty of 911.The phone stopped ringing because we had a lot of US business in our company,” explained Evans.

He was laid off on a Friday afternoon in 2001. “I called the furniture store asking for a record of employment and on Monday I got a phone call from Mr. Barr asking me if I’d like to work in Powell River.”

Evans worked at Western Mortgage Realty Corporation’s head office for a month to get a good feel for what the company did before moving back to Powell River.

Life is full of lessons and one that stands out in Evan’s mind “is that if you prove who you are and what you can do you will get head hunted.”

Evans has never had a resume, and although he wouldn’t recommend not having a resume, he has never needed one.

“Certainly a good resume these days helps.”

Although Evans has no post secondary education he’s a quick study. “I know it is uncommon to be right out of school and work like that without a post secondary education but when people see a keener they grab onto them. I’ve done that myself.”

Not only does Evans manage the Town Centre Mall but he manages two apartment buildings, a staff of five and oversees all maintenance on the Powell River Town Centre Holding’s properties.

Evans is not a “suit and tie guy.” He’s not scared to put on his coveralls and climb a ladder to change a light bulb. “If my guys do it I do it. You’ll see me out there with a mop some days or with a broom or salting a parking lot at three in the morning. I’ll do whatever it takes and that is important in business.”

If he had to give one piece of advice to someone starting out he’d tell them that they have to be honest and sincere about what they are doing and they have to put their time in. “I’ve seen businesses start up and fail once they experience an element of success and then the owners back off.”

“Do your market research! Make sure you are putting a product out that people need.”

Evans said it pays never to leave on bad terms with anybody because you never know when you’ll come across that person again.


Robalin Bakewell
Juggling cooking & studying
Long hours for restaurant owner

Background • Just celebrated first anniversary in business. Completed one year at Capilano College and is working on Bachelor of Science through Thompson Rivers University.
Title • Owner, Bakewell’s Restaurant
Age • 21
Years in Business • 1

Robalin BakewellWith a last name like Bakewell it seemed as though Robalin Bakewell’s future was mapped out long before she even gave it a thought.

Robalin owns Bakewell’s Restaurant on Glacier Street. She grew up on a float house and attended a one-room school house in the 30 person strong community of Echo Bay. Robalin moved to Pender Harbour where she graduated from high school and then went on to Capilano College. “I was working full time and taking a full course load in college as I had to support myself,” said Robalin. At the end of her first year in college she returned to Pender and then went prawning out of Egmont. “That’s how I met Wills [her partner],” she said, explaining how she wound up in Powell River.

When Robalin first moved to Powell River she didn’t plan on opening a restaurant. “Having a little bakery was something I figured I’d do way later in life,” she said. She worked in a pie shop on Granville Island but said she has been baking and cooking forever.

But sometimes life just happens and unexpected things come your way. “The opportunity for this restaurant came up so I took it.”

Robalin’s first year in business has been, well, busy. She averages a 70 hour work week. Bakewell’s is open six days a week, for nine hours a day. If her baker comes in she begins her day at 6 am but if her baker can’t come in or calls in sick Robalin is up and at it by 5:30.

“It’s a big time commitment,” she admits.

Robalin is working on her Bachelor of Science degree online through Thompson Rivers and then plans to get her intermediate level elementary school teaching certificate.

Bakewell’s is open for breakfast and lunch. Robalin takes pride in everything she does beginning at the coffee she serves. “I learned a lot about coffee while working on Granville Island. “ Bakewell’s serves a blended coffee that’s a combination of Guatemalan medium roast and a dark roast. “The dark roast has more flavour and the medium roast is less acidic. When you blend the two you get a great cup of coffee!”

Robalin uses organic ingredients when possible, free range eggs and real cheese. “I have always eaten healthy food. We used to catch our own fish on the way home from school and my parents always had a garden.”

Everything is made from scratch: soup, pancakes, hash browns and bread. They also offer gluten-free food.

Robalin loves cooking. “You have to enjoy life and you have to eat to live so you might as well enjoy what you eat.”

The first year has been challenging. “I didn’t know anything when I started. A business is like a child. It grows and transforms. It takes a community to raise a child and my business wouldn’t still be here if it wasn’t for my loyal customers.”

With that in mind, Robalin set out to say thank you to her loyal customers one her first anniversary. “We put on a special thank you dinner for our best customers. It was so much fun, now they all recognize each other!”

Advice for someone going into business?

“Make sure you have enough money for six months of basic bills—that would relieve a lot of stress.”


Aaron Pinch
Age doesn’t matter
An entrepreneur with political interests

Background • Max Cameron and BCIT graduate
Title • Owner, Powell River Microsystems
Years in Business • Self-employed for 6 years
Age • 26

Aaron PinchPowell River Microsystems owner Aaron Pinch has been an entrepreneur since he was in junior high. “I became very interested in computers at the age of 10 and started working on them while in school.”

At first, Pinch worked for friends and family but soon business people heard of Pinch’s work and before you know it, he was spending after school hours working on business computers.

His clients would pick him up and drive him to their place of business and then drive him back home. “I was too young to drive back then,” said Pinch, “so I had to rely on the people I was working for.”

Although Pinch has had his own business for six years he’s only 26.

He deals with the “you’re awfully young” comment by telling people that it is not just about age, it is about seizing the opportunity, it is about hard work, it is about innovation and when you are building a business more than age matters.

He looks to Henry Ford, the great thinker and innovator with only a grade three education, but who never stopped learning. “Look at what he did,” he said pointing to Ford’s invention of the car.

Pinch likes Ford’s quote: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”

“It’s not so much about being the expert and having all the answers but it is about knowing where to get those answers and who the experts are,” he added.

The “you’re awfully young” comment still dogs Pinch in his political interests. He first ran for municipal council at the age of 23, then again in last year’s by election and he is running again in the November city election.

“I want to help the community do well. When the community does well, I do well. It’s pretty simple. This is my way of trying to help the community move forward and progress.”

Pinch grew up in Powell River then went to BCIT where he studied computers with a business component. After graduating, he found work with a technology company in the lower mainland and by the age of 20 he was managing an entire department. “I joined that company as the unpaid practicum student with BCIT and went from that to a job there then to a more senior role to supervising a department all within a year and a half.”

He attributes his rapid rise up the ladder to his willingness to work hard. “Being young and passionate and dedicated is part of it but one of the great things about small companies is that they are often willing to let you take the ball and run with it and as long as you are making progress they say, “great, please help our company make money!”

Pinch longed to return to Powell River. He missed hiking, he missed the mountains and he missed his family. He researched the market to see if he could make a living in Powell River and decided yes, he could.

He likes the challenge and variety of running his own business. “You are your own boss, you have all the highs and lows, difficult customers, difficult decisions and the financial headaches are yours to deal with because the buck stops here.”


Tanya Close
Clothing that fits... to a T
Helping women with great fit mark of this business

Background • Kwantlen College, and Blanche MacDonald Fashion Design
Title • Owner, Fits to a T
Years in Business • 5 years
Age • 30-something

Tanya CloseWhen Tanya Close was a little girl her favourite game was “Let’s Play Dress Up!” Today, she still loves playing the same game, only with a twist.

“Let’s Play Dress Up! is what we call it when customers come in to Fits to A T and let us help them. It’s when they try something on that they normally wouldn’t try on,” explains Tanya. “It’s a lot of fun for us when customers let us pick out different clothes for them.”

It’s really no surprise that Tanya ended up owning a clothing store aimed at providing current fashion styles for the casual and career girl age 30 and up. “I was doodling dresses in grade one,” she admits. “I always loved dressing up Barbie dolls.”

Although Tanya grew up in North Delta she spent many summer holidays in Powell River with family members. She studied fashion design and business management at Kwantlen College and Blanche MacDonald Fashion Design.

“One of the things I wanted to focus on was appropriate fittings,” said Tanya. “Because, like bras, most women wear the wrong size of clothes. They will wear something that is comfortable but too large so it ends up hanging like a tent.”

Tanya says the way women see themselves is often skewed. “Most women think they are bigger than they are so they tend to go up a size or two.”

When Tanya opened her store five years ago she wanted to gain her clients' trust. “Today, I get a lot of clients who come in and say ‘I hate shopping’ but they still come into my store and they still want my help.”

For women like these shopping without a helping hand is overwhelming. “I think I have gained trust with these customers. They know that I will not send them out dressed like a clown.”

Tanya has a lot of family support. Her mom and aunts come in and help out on Tanya’s days off. “It’s fun for them. I call all the girls who work here my divas because they all love clothes. I have even had my grandma here taking the plastic off clothes when they just come in!”

While the first year in business is about trial and error, Tanya says it is important to do your homework and create a good business plan before opening. “That way, when you get busy you can fall back on your business plan to see what you need to do!”

Fits to a T is all about fit. “My nickname is T, I’m the T and we focus on fit,” says Tanya.


Kevin Sigouin
All in a day’s work
Running a business, or running a half-marathon

Title • Responsible for insurance division of First Credit Union; Co-owner Crossroads Village; Manager of Insurance, Westview Agencies...
Background • B.Comm; Chartered Insurance Professional, Insurance Institute of Canada.
Age • 31
Years in Business • 8

Kevin SigouinWhen Kevin Sigouin left Powell River he thought it was for good. He had grown up here and was one of the first Grade 12 graduates of the Program Cadre. He wanted to spread his wings so he moved to Calgary.

There he graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary with a specialty in Finance Risk Management and Insurance.

While still in university, Kevin chaired the International Business Committee of the Calgary Chamber of Commerce.

“At that time it had the largest membership of Chambers of Commerce in all of Canada.” While still in his late twenties Kevin was chairing a committee which included 50 executives. They were putting forward policy resolutions that dealt with everything from trade with the United States to redefining what international policy should look like.

Kevin worked for an international brokerage firm in Calgary insuring contractors working overseas in war zones and high conflict areas.

He moved back to Powell River in 2004 with his wife Laura and daughters, Paige, two, and Payton, four, to work with his father Réal who had purchased Westview Agencies. “Why in the world would I want to raise children anywhere else?” he says simply. “I realized you can touch more people and be more connected in a small community.”

Although Kevin and his dad were both in the insurance business they were at different ends of the spectrum. While Réal was providing coverage for homes, Kevin had been providing coverage for people working overseas in high-risk areas.

The sale of Westview Agencies to the Credit Union has streamlined the business and now staff has more time to concentrate on the insurance end of the business instead of administration.

Like any industry, demographics are an issue. “Mature individuals are retiring and there is not enough interest coming up through the ranks.”

Kevin isn’t one to stand still and wait for life to happen. Instead, he’s the kind of person who makes things happen. Together with Aaron Pinch, the pair created a non-partisan educational group called Emerging Leaders to teach people about issues that affect their community.

Kevin sits on the advisory board for the Haskayne School of Business and says this position keeps him in touch with the Calgary marketplace and what is happening all across Canada

Kevin is literally on the run. When he isn’t training for another half marathon—he’s finished fifth in his age category for men in 2006 and 2007 and is running again this month—you can probably find him hanging out with his wife and two daughters.




So you think you can dance?
Jazz to jitterbug

From ballet to belly dancing, would-be dancers will hit the stage for the final competition of So You Think You Can Dance? Powell River on Saturday, November 1.

With contestants of all ages dancing a wide array of dances, from the exotic to the traditional, the November 1 show promises to impress and entertain from beginning to end, says organizer Jessica Hutton of Forton Entertainment.

The final competition will be held at 7 pm in the Evergreen Theatre. At that time, the contestants will be judged by a total of five votes; a panel of four judges, along with the audience, whose collective decision will count as the fifth vote. The evening’s show will also include performances by some of Powell River’s highly talented professional dancers.

Though based on the TV version, So You Think You Can Dance? Powell River differs in that the judges do not give live feedback as they do on the TV show. Another difference is that there is only one performance in which the winner will be decided, not a number of shows in which a selection of contestants are narrowed down.

A second round of auditions will be held October 9 from 6:30-8:30 pm at the Evergreen Theatre. Any type of dance is welcome to audition, from ballet to belly dancing, jazz to the jitterbug. If you are interested in auditioning, register by calling 604-483-3358 or emailing canyoudancepr@yahoo.ca. Auditions are closed to public viewing.

Tickets for So You Think You Can Dance? Powell River are on sale at Pete’s Plumbing, Drangonflyz, by calling 604-483-3358 or emailing canyoudancepr@yahoo.ca. One dollar for each ticket sold will be donated to the Professional Firefighters Burn Fund.

Forton Entertainment’s upcoming shows include So You Think You Can Dance? Powell River and Powell River Idol. Auditions for Powell River Idol will be held in November at the Town Center Mall and followed by the show in February.





Rocksalt includes Powell River poet
By Roger Whittaker

When Jody Jankola moved to Powell River ten years ago among her possessions was a sheepskin from Concordia University in Montreal, heralding her creative writing degree and a lifetime’s worth of poetry and stories, written as part of her deep desire to be a writer.

Local poet Jody Jankola reads her early copy of the new anthology of BC poetry, Rocksalt, which will be available this month.Life has a way of deciding who is ordained to achieve the results we yearn for. Our only task within the parentheses of birth and death is to continue on, unwavering, toward what we know is our one true calling. Jody writes unceasingly and at every opportunity. This steady course is bearing fruit this month with the release of Rocksalt: An Anthology of Contemporary BC Poetry.

The researcher of the future will find Jody grouped with 108 poetic icons such as Harold Rhenisch (Powell River Festival of Writers 2005), bill bissett and newcomers to the poetic stage like Daniela Elza, no stranger to Powell Riverites who have attended the Surrey International Writers’ Conference.

Jody hones her writing skills on the whetstone of the Malaspina Writers’ Group, which meets regularly to parse and plumb the exact intent of every word expressed by the writer’s hand. This is where “Heron Is God” first made its debut and began its journey from the original 70 plus lines to the form accepted by editors Mona Fertig and Harold Rhenisch for inclusion in Rocksalt, published by Mother Tongue Press.

Jody claims inclusion in this tome is akin to being included with her childhood ideas of rock stars, the writers she is now sharing a table of contents with. Her mother’s writing life often mixed the family together with then-famous and emerging writers.

“Heron Is God” is inspired by conversations with her daughter Skeena as they waited for the school bus. Ten year-old Skeena is the focus of Jody’s life today; they often share mother-daughter moments of realization as they attempt to fathom the mystery of what they perceive each day: enjoying the park at Mowat Bay, driving to work or simply listening to children being children. All this inspires Jody to attach words to her feelings and place them on the page. Readers have the opportunity then to see into her mind and involve themselves in the pictures her words create.

Rocksalt will be available in October 2008, so you can get a copy for the Christmas sock of your favourite poet or simply to increase your own realization of spiritual enlightenment as attained through journeys into the poetic view.



The adventures of a young heiress
Reviewing: Flora Segunda by Ysabeau S Wilce
By Hailey Sacree

This summer I found a really good book at the library, called Flora Segunda. The title is the name of the main character Flora (obviously) who is about 12 years old and the heir to the Fryydraca house and family. There is a tradition in the Fryydraca house that when a girl comes of age, they go to the barracks and join the military. Well, Flora Segunda is not looking forward to that. She wants to be free and become a ranger like Nini Mo and Boy Hansen. Of course her mom will not even discuss that subject and Flora would never tell her how she truly feels. Flora is left alone most of the time as her mom is out tending to the warlord and commanding the barracks while her siblings are in the military. (Not much of a life if you ask me.)

Her dad is a raging alcoholic who spends his time up on the roof getting high and screaming about what not. Flora’s house is so HUGE that they only live in a tiny part of it. The housekeeper was banished and the house became wild and dirty so they were forced to live in the servant’s quarters.

One day Flora is late for class and realizes she forgot her homework in her room. She doesn’t have time to climb the stairs so she uses the elevator. This is a big no-no because you have no idea where the elevator will take you. She commands it to take her to her room but it keeps going up and up. Eventually it opens its wide doors and drops her on this strange landing, and then the trouble begins.

She unknowingly unleashes the banished housekeeper and slowly without realizing it, this starts a terrible reaction. The housekeeper pretends to be helping her, saying he is restoring the house but it is not true.

An exasperated sergeant a dinner between Flora and her Mom with an urgent message. Flora finds out, even though she is not supposed to, that her mom has captured her idol, Boy Hansen. Even worse, her Mom has scheduled him to hang in a week’s time. There is forgery, murder, lies, trickery, fear and brutal emotions packed into chapters that I secretly read deep into the night. I remember complaining to my dad that I had to finish the chapter or I was going to DIE!!

The author makes you feel utterly hopeless and then in a second turns everything around and sends you jumping around your room happy that everything has turned out, even though it is not in the way you expect it.



A park for the people: Millennium Park
By Hilary Bruhn

This autumn may well mark a historic milestone in the progress of Millennium Park from dream to reality.

Ten years ago, when a group of citizens realized much of the green space in Powell River might be sold to private interests, they took action and formed the Millennium Park Committee. The proposal they developed was for 52 hectares to be saved as a world-class park—including precious waterfront, treasured forest land along McFall Creek, and the much-loved Willingdon Beach Trail.

In 2003 when NorskeCanada (now Catalyst Paper Corporation) made the decision to sell 328 hectares of Lot 450—including the proposed parkland—people of Powell River rallied immediately to save their green space. Not only did thousands sign petitions, which were presented to the Mayor and Council, but the Millennium Park Fund gathered almost $90,000 in donations.

Voting with their feet: A popular path for walkers, the Willingdon Beach trail sees more than 300 people a day.
Voting with their feet: A popular path for walkers,
the Willingdon Beach trail sees more than 300 people a day.

At this point, the City of Powell River joined with Tla’Amin First Nation and Catalyst Paper Corporation to form PRSC Land Development Corporation, which then bought the full 328 hectares. PRSC has now made an offer for the City to purchase about 38 hectares, between the Willingdon Beach waterfront and the pole line, for approximately $1.5 million.

“We’ve been waiting ten years for this to happen,” say Eagle Walz, chairman of the Committee. “It’s an extremely generous offer. Now we can save this treasured land for all time.”

Broad-based support for the Park is reflected in the Committee membership. Walz represents Powell River Parks and Wilderness Society, much respected for trail-building achievements throughout the community. Rudi van Zwaaij represents the Powell River Forestry Museum, which has created many forest heritage displays along the Willingdon Beach trail. Paul Nassichuk represents CUPE Local 798; CUPE volunteers have spent years restoring McFall and McGuffie Creeks as salmon streams. Jerry Durnin represents the Powell River Garden Club, eager to create accessible forest gardens within the park.

Tla’Amin First Nation likewise supports the Park and looks forward to protecting several important cultural heritage sites in the forest and tidal interface.

Currently City Council has directed staff to prepare a report looking into holding a referendum this November on borrowing $1.5 million to purchase the land.

The Millennium Park Fund has contributed $75,000 conditionally to the City to assist with the purchase. The timber on the proposed Park is now owned by Island Timberlands. The Tree Retention Committee has been in negotiations with the company for several years and is waiting for a response to its most recent proposal.

“Now more than ever we need the biodiversity and sustainability provided by this green space,” says Pam Begbie, one of the founding members of the Committee. “And now we are closer than ever to achieving our goal.”

The Millennium Park Committee stresses the importance of continued action, especially now. By lobbying candidates for Council and Mayor this November and by voting ‘yes’ on the referendum, the people of Powell River can make this magnificent park a reality.




Working together to conquer fear
Meet the challenges of hiring a person with disabilities
By Linda Wegner

Try to remember your first job interview. Unless you were an exception to the usual rule, butterflies raced around your stomach. Now move on a bit: you’ve been selected to fill the position and you’re about to embark on the first day of that first job. Nerve racking, wasn’t it? Between making sure you were going to be on time, properly attired for whatever position you had been hired to fill, and making sure you took your lunch, stress was king.

Now add to those “firsts” the additional pressure of a physical or developmental disability. Or, equally important, the apprehension that might be felt by the employer.

Laurie Marshall, Employment Program Coordinator at Model Community Project and Connie Polman Tuin, Coordinator of Employment Support Services for Powell River Association of Community Living (PRACL) are dedicated to making sure employment/employee matches go as smoothly as possible.

Addressing fears that can over-ride an employer’s willingness to hire a person with disabilities is an important factor in that process. For example, the fear of bringing someone to the job site who doesn’t fit in or who wouldn’t be liked is often enough to nix any plans to hire someone who has developmental or physical challenges.

Connie addressed those concerns: “Fear is often caused by the lack of education or lack of exposure to people with disabilities,” she said, then continued, “There is nothing better than to see someone succeed in something they try. So to put someone in a position that is over their heads and be unsuccessful, then we have two people who are unhappy—the employer and the person who applied for the job. We do our best to make every placement successful.

In reaching the goal of mutual benefit and fulfillment for both parties, Employment Support Services provides career development, work experience, job shadow, job-search and job site training to its clients.

“The main focus of our service is for our clients to reach their employment goals but we equally support the needs of the employer.” Connie continued. “That support is ongoing and is at no cost to the employer.”

According to Connie, client/employer support continues as long as it takes for job coaches to be able to gradually phase out and let natural supports take over. The goal is for clients to be independent at their worksite. However, it is important for the employer to know that if something came up where an employee had to learn a new task or maybe they were having some difficulties within their job, employers could call us and we would step right back in and give the support needed to either employer or employee.”

While Model Community Project projects differ more in the clients they serve and eligibility, the goals do not.

Laurie commented that once a client has decided that they want to return to the workplace, job coaches will assist with the career exploration process, transferable skills are assessed and work experience opportunities are developed. If accommodations or job carving is necessary, this will be addressed with the client and potential employer throughout the entire process.

For example, a change in work habits may be needed due to an accident or a mental health issue and a change in employment direction may be required.

“The job coaches will also assist with social and life skills, as well as connecting the client to the appropriate community resources to address any basic needs that may not be met. It’s part of the job coach’s goals to help identify any barriers to employment. For the individual, it’s all about them getting a job that they love to do. Whether it is full time or a few short shifts a week, this job is a means of improving their quality of life and contributing to their community.”

Consultation, guidance to further education and one on one support are available through the program; nor are employers forgotten here, either.

“You will probably end up with one of the most dedicated employees because this is what they’ve worked toward for months, perhaps several years,” Laurie continued.

For more information on these or the new and innovative programs, contact Connie at 604 485-4628 or Laurie at 604 485-2688.




Making things work at work
From job sharing to reduced hours, it’s all about flexibility

Keeping employees happy by providing job flexibility is one way that companies can retain workers in today’s competitive market.

First Credit Union has a number of job sharing and other special arrangements that have been created to meet the needs of its employees.

There’s the typical job sharing arrangement when one position is split in two, as is the case with the receptionist’s position.

Sandra McDowell, chief marketing officer of First Credit Union, says communication between two people sharing the same job is very important.

The receptionist’s position is shared between Amanda Pagani and Kim Hildering. Both work three days a week and cover each other during holidays. “When they transition between days that is when there is a download of information via phone or email. The transition needs to be seamless for customers,” says McDowell.

It is a win/win situation for both employer and employee. The Credit Union gets six-day week coverage and is able to retain employees who wish to work only part time. “It enables us to keep employees with a great deal of knowledge,” says McDowell.

Hildering likes the fact that job sharing provides her with the flexibility she wants for her personal life. “It gives me more time to pursue the things that I want to do.”

For Pagani, who has three boys in school, the job share arrangement provides balance. “It gives me quality time at home. I can take holidays when I want and if something comes up, like a sick child, I am covered and not leaving the company in a lurch.”

Other arrangements include reduced hours, which see the employee work a four-day work week and a position that sees employees work longer hours each day over a four-day period to make up full time hours.

“In addition to that we try to be flexible where needed,” says McDowell.

When marketing coordinator Charlene Reinisch returned to work from maternity leave recently she wanted to continue nursing her daughter. “She combines her lunch and breaks and splits them in two so she can go home twice a day and nurse her child,” explains McDowell.

Being flexible is becoming increasingly more necessary in today’s competitive job market if you want to retain employees, notes McDowell. “We try to accommodate people’s lives as needed so everyone wins.”

When McDowell decided to take her Masters in Leadership through Royal Roads University she received support from her employer. “The Credit Union tries to support people if it will also help them with their position,” she says.

It’s all about building relationships. “We want to build relationships with the community, with members and with staff. Our staff is really our most important asset.”




Peter Legge, an inspiration for everyone
Real life anecdotes will lace Legge’s presentation at Business Fair

What do you need to do to get to where you want to go?

If you’re like most of us, that’s a tough question. You probably know the answer but the real question is, are you willing to do the work?

We all have dreams but if you want your dream to come true there are steps you need to take to make it happen. You need to believe in yourself. You need to do the work.

Peter Legge is living his dream as an internationally acclaimed professional speaker, a best selling author and as president and CEO of the largest, independently owned magazine publishing company in Western Canada—Canada Wide Magazines and Communications Ltd. He is a community leader who devotes his time to many worthwhile organizations and if that’s not enough, Legge is coming to Powell River on Friday, October 24 to speak at the Powell River Business Fair.

You don’t have to be in business to be inspired by Peter Legge. His presentations are based on his everyday experiences as a community leader, husband, father, and CEO. His books have motivated thousands of people towards positive change.

Legge’s talk, Make Your Life a Masterpiece, is about creating and growing wealth. It is about courage and the belief that you have a gift to offer the world. It is about self-mastery and a winning attitude. You will learn how your distinctive style and one-of-a-kind experience is key to being the master of your own destiny.

Legge’s grandmother was a scullery maid in London, England and his grandfather a porter for the British Rail system—hardly the lineage you probably imagined. But when you have grandparents and parents continually telling you that you can achieve just about anything you set your mind and heart on—great things happen.

Today, Peter Legge is a multi-millionaire. He has been in his own business for 32 years and never lost money.

He has built the largest independently owned magazine publishing company in Western Canada with annual revenue of over $30 million.

He has more speaking awards than any other Canadian speaker. He is one of two living Canadians to receive Toastmasters International Golden Gavel Award. He is the only Canadian to receive the Nido Qubein Philanthropic Award. He has been presented with The Order of British Columbia, the highest civilian award in BC.

He has been married for 40 years and has three daughters.

Legge will be joined by daughter Rebecca at the business fair. An accomplished speaker and presenter in her own right, Rebecca Legge is Canada Wide’s director of Digital Sales. As general sales manager of BC Business (BC’s leading business magazine) for many years, Rebecca is an expert at the art and science of selling business solutions to customers. Her custom sales seminars have helped hundreds learn the art and science of selling.

“In business, nothing happens until somebody sells something.”

Great sales techniques can be learned. Her seminars cover the elements of effective business communication, sales presentations that sell, helping clients find solutions and overcoming objections.

But wait, there’s more at the Business Fair. Vicki Lundine will speak about Supporting People With Disabilities in the Workplace. This Vancouver Island-based author and career facilitator will teach you how you can include people with disabilities and how integration can benefit employees and employer.

The agenda also includes a session on customer service and satisfaction with SuperHost trainer Barb Rees and Neil McKenzie of Pinetree Autobody, a shop that has been recognized by ICBC for providing outstanding service.

There will be information on how to access the secondary school apprenticeship program and on insuring your most valuable asset: yourself. Learn how Toastmasters can help you with your public speaking and leadership skills and how this will help you in business.

To order your ticket for $99—which includes breakfast, lunch and a day of education and inspiration—call Bonnie Krakalovich at Powell River Living Magazine, 604 485-0003 or email bonnie@prliving.ca. Don’t miss this once in a lifetime opportunity.




Business Connections
By Kim Miller

With the Horizon Business Awards coming up, look for nomination forms in The Peak, or visit www.powellriverchamber.com to fill out the form online. The Horizon Business Awards take place Saturday, November 8 to recognize outstanding businesses in our community.

Mission Possible, Powell River Appliance Servicing is now located at 7105 Duncan Avenue, just below Thunder Bay Saw Shop. Denis Racine, owner/technician, services all brands and deals with all service-related matters. Call 604 485-0101.

Jenny Garden and Tom Dowding have returned home to open The Music Room. They offer beginner and intermediate music lessons on a variety of instruments and instrument rentals. Call 604 483-9101.

Laura Kew’s Q Glassworks Stained Glass Studio has a new name to better reflect the work and the location. It is now Pacific Reflections Glassworks Stained Glass & Fusing Studio.

Valerie Peterson, owner of Valerie’s Marketing Solutions (Vmark), has a background in retail marketing and publishing. She was brand manager at the Lady Foot Locker chain in the USA and director of visual merchandising for Kids Foot Locker. She has won awards for advertising. Valerie focuses on print and visual merchandising as well as writing and copy editing services. Call 604 483-3573 or visit www.vmark.com.

TMS Moving, Storage & Restorations now includes furniture upholstery. The Upholstery Shop opened its doors at 7339 Duncan Street with Alan McCallum as their new upholsterer. Alan trained under Ida Belanger at Wilf’s Special-T Shop. Although Wilf’s Special-T Shop and Nicole’s Embroidery & Design are still doing what they do best, TMS has taken over the furniture upholstery side of their business. Call 604 414-0441.

Bob Davey bought Howe Sound Ribbon Exchange and has changed the name to Encore Toner Exchange. If you are looking for remanufactured laser toner cartridges for printers, copiers, and fax machines, call 604 483-9966 or visit www.encoretoner.ca.

It has been a whirlwind start up for Turner Bay Seafoods on Marine Avenue. Allison Coburn and Fred Stoeckner are providing as much local wild Pacific product as possible. They also pickle prawns and salmon and do deli lunches and take-outs. Find them next door to Taw’s, in the prior Italian Grocery location.

Jerry Causier, former manager of the Powell River General Hospital, recently started his own leadership consulting business called Maralo Solutions. Although he specializes in working with health care and social organizations, his skills and experience can be applied to just about any business or organization. Check out his website www.maralosolutions.ca or call 1-888-9MARALO.

Christien Kaaij of Alof!i Consultancy has added five associates to her business: Robert Visscher, April Struthers, Kathy Friesen, Malerie Meeker and Deb Bryant. This socially engaged consultancy firm is located in the Rodmay in the Townsite. Visit www.alofii.com or call 604 414-5616.

Lightning Strikes Electrical Inc, owned and operated by William Ashworth, is an electrical contracting company. William can perform any electrical task. Lightning Strikes Electrical is working to promote alternate energy solutions. For more information visit www.Windpower-BC.com or call 604 414-3705.

Powell River Books has released two new books in the series Coastal British Columbia Stories. In April, Up the Airway was published, followed in July by Farther Up the Lake. Author Wayne Lutz has now published six books in this local series.

Congratulations to Dr Ashok Varma who has been elected president of governing Council of the College of Dental Surgeons of BC for 2008-09.

Have you tuned into “Powell River’s Energy” 95.7 SUN FM on your radio dial? It’s the revised AM 1280 CHQB/Magic.

The Chamber will host an all-candidates forum on October 30th, at 7pm at the Evergreen Theatre in the Recreation Complex.

Don’t miss the October 9 Chamber luncheon at the Rodmay Hotel catered by Manzanita Restaurant with guest speakers from the Powell River Literacy Council. RSVP. Call Kim at 604 485-4051.



Sometimes you just know
Church sermon prompts Adams to open hair salon

Sue Adams says a church sermon on how to defrost your frozen assets was the catalyst for her opening her own hair and body salon.

Adams, who grew up in Powell River, had been hairdressing for 21 years, when she attended the service at the Kelly Creek Community Church. She’d been thinking about what do when her 17-year-old son Cody graduated and moved on but she never planned on opening her own hair salon. “I realized that a new chapter in my life was about to begin and I was thinking about moving out of town and doing something new for me. Then I went to church and the sermon was called ‘How To Defrost Your Frozen Assets,’ and I began to think about my assets, which are hair. By the end of the sermon I turned to my mother and said ‘I’m opening my own salon.’” I was just as sure as could be and I was surprised that this was what I was doing.”

There are certain things in everyone’s life that they are sure about and this was one for Adams: “I said ‘I’m doing it!’”

New business: Sue Adams launched her own business, Waves Hair & Body Salon in late September.Waves Hair & Body Salon opened on Glacier Street at the end of September. Adams’ journey from stylist to small business owner has been a huge learning curve. “It’s been interesting see the business side of things. I didn’t know where to start but Jim Agius, my landlord, has been so supportive and encouraging and has helped me every inch of the way. It’s been a good experience, support has come from every angle.”

Getting Waves ready has been a family affair with Adams’ mother helping with the painting and her son carrying the load at home. “Every time I opened the door it just felt right.”

They’ve created a beach theme at the salon which is in keeping with Adams’ fun and upbeat personality. There are three stylists and an esthetician working at Waves. They carry hair and nail products and Adams hopes to expand into offering some locally made products for sale in the future.




Patricia Theatre celebrates with big birthday bash
Friends toast historic theatre’s 80th during special weekend

If the old Patricia Theatre could talk what a tale she’d tell.

She’d likely tell us about vaudeville shows and burlesque acts, maybe about the time in the 70s when “Miss Linda,” a soft shoe dancer, performed her dance routine before the second show and just let her garments down! She might tell us about what happened the night of March 14, 1932 when notorious criminals Bagley and Fawcett came a calling and how they blew open her safe and made off with the cash box. She might tell us about the old silent movies and what it was like when the “talkies” first arrived. She might tell us how everyone looked forward to an evening or an afternoon of entertainment. She might tell us about Saturday afternoon matinees and how they were an institution with young boys throwing peas and beans and popcorn at the bad guys on the big screen. She might tell us what it was like before television took over. She might tell us what it was like to be loved, and respected and cherished. She might tell us about her days of glory, of how no expense was spared when she was built in 1928 and what it’s like to be the oldest continuously operating movie theatre company in all of Canada. She might tell us that today, she is more than just a movie theatre, she is a museum.

It’s showtime at The Patricia.

The oldest continuously operating movie theatre company in Canada will celebrate its 80th birthday in its Ash Avenue home during the November 7–9 weekend.

Ann Nelson and her son Brian Nelson have managed the theatre since 2003 and they’re inviting the entire community to help celebrate the old gal’s birthday. The Nelsons, along with volunteers and the “Friends of The Historic Patricia Theatre Society,” have been instrumental in restoring The Patricia and offering more diverse programming through art film series and parlour concerts.

Grand ol’ dame: The Patricia theatre holds a special place for Brian Nelson and Ann Nelson.

The first movie was shown in the old Patricia Theatre, just down the hill from the “new” Patricia Theatre at Cenotaph Park.

Frank Haslam, now 104, worked at the old theatre after school and flopped back the kitchen chairs to sweep the floors. For this service he was allowed to see any show that played, free of charge.

The Patricia TheatreThe movie company itself turned 95 on September 13. Along with being the oldest continuously operating movie theatre company in Canada, it has the unique distinction of being the oldest continuously operating business in Powell River.

The Patricia Theatre was founded by Bobby Scanlon, son of Michael J Scanlon one of the founders of the Powell River Company. Powell River’s first movie theatre was housed in a tent with a hand-cranked projector and gramophone. When the tent blew down in a storm it was replaced in 1913 with the first Patricia Theatre where Cenotaph Park now sits.

The community of Powell River was invited to participate in a naming contest and “The Patricia” was chosen after Princess Patricia.

In 1928, the present building of The Patricia on Ash Avenue was commissioned. By then, Myron McLeod, who was part of the management and a partner in McLeod, Scanlon Amusements, was involved in the silent movie house.

“Bobby Scanlon sold his interest in McLeod, Scanlon Amusements to Myron in 1931,” explained Ann. From 1931 to 1979 Myron operated the theatre.

Talking movies arrived at the Patricia in 1933. “They had to wait until sound equipment arrived,” noted Ann.

In the late 1930s Myron commissioned The Roxy Theatre on Marine Avenue. He hired the late Henry Pavid as projectionist and manager. The two movie theatres operated in Powell River until the late 1960s when McLeod closed the Roxy. “TV just put the boots to the movie industry,” said Ann. “Myron decided to put all his resources in the better built, better equipped building, The Patricia.”

Henry Pavid moved to The Patricia to manage that theatre. “Henry said that things were really tight from 1968 to 1979,” Ann recalled. “Every place we go in this building we can see Henry fixes. Henry was the most ingenious guy and very creative at fixing things on the fly. As well he was a talented organist.”

Pavid was well known for playing the organ at The Patricia for many years before the movies began and during intermission. Long after most movie theatres had introduced canned music, Pavid still played at the Patricia.  He stopped playing in 2001 after some people pelted him with nuts, bolts and screws during a performance. Pavid’s head was badly cut and bleeding and he decided he could no longer afford to put his life in jeopardy. Henry Pavid died three years ago at the age of 92.

The history of The Patricia is inextricably intertwined with the emergence of pulp and paper in Western Canada as the theatre was created to provide entertainment to residents of this newly developing community.

“The theatre has been the heart and soul of Powell River entertainment for many years,” said Ann. From fashion shows with ladies wearing fur coats, to talent shows, to vaudeville acts, all would be eagerly anticipated by those who arrived on the Thursday night steam ship from Vancouver.

Ann credits the fact that the Patricia is still “alive” today to Mr. McLeod for consolidating his holdings into one theatre and concentrating his dwindling resources on The Patricia.

The Patricia was purchased by Bruce McDonald in 1979 and run by his son Bob for many years. It was sold to Michael Scott in 1999 but after several years Scott became discouraged.

“Brian and I took it over voluntarily in October 2002 because Michael Scott was ready to walk away and the Credit Union was ready to foreclose.”

For a year, Ann and Brian ran the business. “In 2003, the Credit Union invited us to look at doing a restoration and rehabilitation in partnership with them.”

Murals at the Patricia

The end result is that both the building and the business have been saved.

“Every year we are making improvements. This is a partnered commitment to saving a heritage building for the community by us, the Nelson family, and by the Credit Union.

Ann and Brian are committed to The Patricia. “There is not a show that either Brian or I are not here to welcome people to our theatre and thank them for coming.”

Everyone is invited to drop by the theatre on November 7, 8 and 9 to help celebrate the old girl’s birthday. A silent movie will be screened on Friday, November 7 with organist Jim Dickson playing. “I think Marilyn Munroe is making a guest appearance,” Ann winked. A homecoming will be held on November 8 with a cake and everyone who ever worked at The Patricia is invited.

A live vaudeville and a live burlesque show will be held Saturday night. On Sunday, November 9 there will be an open house with tours and a parlour concert will be held Sunday afternoon.

Both Ann and Brian are proud of the Patricia and the affection they have for her is evident. “Brian and I adopted the old girl and we are going to take care of her.”

Theatre’s heritage value

Key to the Patricia Theatre’s heritage value as part of the historic Townsite is the fact that it is the only surviving continuously operating movie theatre company in all of Canada.

Built in 1928, it was designed by architect Henry Holdsby Simmons (designer of the Stanley Theatre in Vancouver) and built with a “spare no expense” exuberance. Simmons used the Spanish Revival expression of the Arts and Crafts Movement widely used in the 1920s in his creation. The exotic design of the exterior continues inside where murals of peacocks among lush scenery and idyllic landscapes were intended to transport audiences to a world of fantasy.

The Patricia was designed to house retail space below and professional  offices above with the performing facilities below.




Powell River hospital staff are the best!
Local woman has many compliments

Shirley Maedel has nothing but praise for the folks at the Powell River General Hospital.

Shirley was rushed to hospital in July. She was scared: she’d previously been diagnosed with a serious illness and her situation was tenuous.

“There was no wait and the doctor attending said to me with a smile, “You’re a keeper.”

Shirley’s husband Lloyd was made to feel welcome and a bed was placed in her hospital room for him.

“My family was made feel welcome as well and they were encouraged to come and go as they pleased.”

So many times we hear complaints about hospital food but in Shirley’s experience, the food was great. “I was really blown away with the hospital food even though I didn’t have much of an appetite. It was done up so nice, there was a nice variety and they got it to you hot. We had snacks in the afternoon and evening.”

When Shirley’s appetite returned, her doctor went the extra mile and even got her the egg McMuffin as she announced that she was starving before breakfast was served.  “I could not believe it. You do not hear enough about the good things that happen.”

Shirley spent her 55th wedding anniversary in the hospital with her husband by her side. “They even let us have a little party!”

Lloyd echoes his wife’s words about the wonderful care she received in hospital. “The experience was pretty darn good. You hear that hospital food is terrible and so forth but these people, the nurses and doctors were so nice and so caring. They even gave us hugs!”

“The nurses were always checking in on me to see if I was comfortable,” said Shirley.

Shirley kept her positive attitude during her six-week stay in hospital despite the seriousness of her situation. “I did not know if I would come home,” she said.

But she did go home and the doctor left the day and time of going home up to Shirley.




For Art's Sake
By Jessica Colasanto

We are fortunate here in Powell River that the end of summer does not mean an end to our arts scene, although last month’s closing of Local Loco’s Arts Café signifies a sad moment for our cultural existence.

This month the Malaspina Arts Society brings us a display of fabric art from the talented Timberlane Quilters. Colourful, calming, quirky—these folks present an array of creativity so skilfully crafted that it shouldn’t be missed. The show hangs throughout October in the Vancouver Island University campus lobby at 3960 Selkirk Avenue. Next month’s MAS show will feature oil paintings by James LeClare, with an opening on October 31 at 7 pm. More information about the society and its members can be found at www.artpowellriver.ca.

Graham Lavery is a local helicopter pilot who never travels far without his camera. He’ll be presenting a collection of his beautiful photographs at Bemused Bistro, 4623 Marine, with an opening reception in mid-October. The show will run through mid-November. Visit www.grahamlavery.com for a sneak peek at some of his images.

Our state-of-the-art Max Cameron Theatre is busy this month. The Metropolitan Opera’s live performance of Salome is broadcast at 10 am on the 11th; check John Silver’s article in last month’s issue for more details at www.prliving.ca. There are also live performances in store throughout the year. On October 9 at 7:30 pm, Shameless Hussy Productions brings us Woman, Idiot, Lunatic, Criminal. The title is taken from the Dominion of Canada’s Elections Act of 1918: “No woman, idiot, lunatic or criminal… shall have the right to vote.” It promises to be a wild and provocative play about determination and social transformation.

Also at the Max in October is Powell River’s own Don Thompson. In fact, this is the first ever tour of the Don Thompson Quartet, with Thompson on piano and vibes, Phil Dwyer on saxophone and piano, Terry Clarke on drums, and Jim Vivian on bass. The band will perform Thompson’s compositions on October 27 at 7 pm. For more information on events at the Max Cameron Theatre, including directions (it’s located at Brooks High School), visit www.MaxCameronTheatre.ca. There you’ll find a link to Thompson’s myspace page, where you can listen to some of the songs from his newest release, Ask Me Later.

Let’s take advantage of these opportunities to support our local arts scene. They’re a big part of what makes Powell River such a wonderful place to be. All of these cultural events are a brought to us by a relatively small group of people in town, often the artists themselves, and their investment of time alone is tremendous. We need to support these events as a community, because in doing so, we’re investing in our own cultural survival: research shows that the culture sector actually encourages a city’s economic growth and urban renewal.

At least the closing of Local Loco’s was not a result of poor patronage; a constant source of live music and art, it was a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. With few arts venues in town, its absence will be felt. However, there are murmurings of a possible arts collective taking shape in its place—a community-driven centre for art and music. Other towns have pulled it off successfully, so maybe we can, too.

Do you have an upcoming art event? We want to hear about it. Let us know at arts@prliving.ca.




Trick-or-treating at the Town Center mall
Mall merchants welcome ghosts, goblins & witches

For 14 years now, Town Centre Mall  merchants have been playing Trick-or-Treat with children every October 31st. This year, they’ll be at it again.

Carol Waldorf, owner of Carol’s Boutique, is one merchant who enjoys dressing up every year for Halloween. She’s been a witch and a spider...and this year?

Besides dressing up herself, she appreciates the many costumes others put together. The children, the costumes and the unexpected of the day never fail to make Carol smile.

“I can remember when Andy Rice came Trick or Treating and he was four years old. Now he’s in university. I’ll never forget when I asked him if he had a trick and he belted out a song. He wasn’t in the least bit shy!”

Trick or Treating at the Town Centre Mall has grown over the years as more and more people learn about it. The mall is open 9:30 am to 5:30 pm on October 31.

“I bet the stores go through $350 worth of candy,” says Carol. “And every store participates.”

Up to 500 children Trick or Treat their way around the mall. Young children, many still in strollers, dress up and the tour of the stores. “It’s safe and we hear more and more from people that they did not get any kids knocking at their door at home because they came to the mall!”

Many merchants and staff get in on the fun as well. The mall puts on a pumpkin-carving contest; winners receive mall gift certificates.




Point of VIU
It’s your money: Learn how to manage it!
By Dawn McLean

Worried about the current financial crisis, and how it will impact your future?

You can contact your financial advisor, if you have one, or ask your Uncle Joe, a retired accountant, for advice. However, even knowing the right questions to ask can be overwhelming.

On top of that, we are all inundated daily with emails and flyers advising us to invest for our futures. The BC Securities Commission has flagged scams that you should be aware of, usually flashing eye-grabbing headlines such as:

 Guaranteed high returns–no risk!

 Insider tips–get in now!

 Offshore investment–tax free!

 Profit like the experts!

 Great investment opportunity–your friends can’t be wrong!

Remember the old adage that warns “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” It still holds, perhaps even more so. Don’t be fooled by promises for quick returns on investments. Slow and steady wins the game, even in the face of fear-mongering headlines such as those that have been on the front pages of late.

Links from the BC Securities Commission website guide you through the latest information on financial scams. Click on the video links to view clips of victims describing their experiences, as well as advice from experts on what to do if you end up in the same boat. Check out www.investright.org/avoid_scams.aspx for more information.

In addition, it really pays off to educate yourself on the basics of investing - you’ve worked hard to save money for your future. You would certainly take issue with the company you work for if they were not issuing you a regular paycheque. In the same way, you need to pay attention to the money you invest, which will one day be the source of your regular paycheque.

You need to be in the loop with respect to where and what to invest, even if you are working with a financial advisor. Courses are available to help you learn - either in person or online. The Institute of Canadian Bankers (ICB) offers online mini-courses from 3 to 9 hours in length on a variety of topics-from Pre-Retirement Planning to Investments Strategies for Retirees to Exchange-Traded Funds. These courses are meant for the layperson, don’t take a lot of time to complete, and will get you well on the road to investor confidence. Visit www.csi.ca/student/en_ca/courses/continuing/index.xhtml to learn more.

Prefer a face-to-face delivery? Vancouver Island University (VIU) has introduced a “Love of Learning” campaign, whereby learners can audit any university course for $99, with no exams or assignments. VIU Nanaimo offers an Introduction to Finance course that focuses on the basic principles of financial management. In Powell River, you can take any of the current roster of university courses for just $99 as well.

Get yourself educated and become involved in your money management. Instead of fearing the your financial future, you can be enriched.




Kenny a funny film for fundraiser
By Jan Padgett

Powell River’s Film Festival is putting the fun into fundraiser with this year’s selection! Hailed as one of Australia’s best ever comedies, KENNY is a feature mockumentary that has become a box-office hit and major award winner.

Written by brothers Shane and Clayton Jacobson, the film is full of witty insights, genuine characters and natural, fluid dialogue, deft camerawork and near-perfect pacing.

Shane Jacobson imbues Kenny with charisma and quiet blue-collar dignity, an endearing character given to spinning memorable pearls of wisdom to the camera and to his motley crew of co-workers.

And what does Kenny do? He works as an installer and maintenance guy for Splashdown, a Melbourne company that provides port-a-potties for major events. And when he is not working he is badgered by his ex-wife or needled by his cantankerous father. Only his young son seems to accept him as he is. But Kenny remains devoted to a job he considers his calling, doing one of the world’s most important and simultaneously disliked jobs. It is the unfolding of his life, with dignity, humour and pain that has raised the bar for this film.

Kenny is sure to win your heart with his flawless delivery. It will be shown October 25 at the Evergreen Theatre with the reception starting at 7 pm followed by the film at 8 pm. For more information contact the Film Festival Office at 604 485‑0325 or check out the website at www.prfilmfestival.ca. For more about the movie, visit www.kennythemovie.com.




Writers' offer their wisdom on Nov 1
By Barb Rees

What do you get when you put a pilot/author together with a poet, a publisher, an editor, and a travel writer? You get years of experience all rolled into a full day of writing tips.

Wayne Lutz, Tanis Helliwell, Paul Blakey, and Barb Rees have 14 published books between them, with more on the way. November 1, together with Jena Lohrbach, they’ll convey some of their acquired wisdom at the 5th annual Powell River Festival of Writers’ Fall Fest.

Tanis will be teaching “Poetry as A Writing Style.” This workshop will be valuable no matter what your style. We all can improve our ability to paint pictures with words.

The afternoon session Taking the Fear Out of Publishing features successful self-published authors Wayne Lutz and Barb Rees.

Jena combines a Masters of English with a life-long love of reading to focus a powerful and critical editor’s eye on superfluous words, sentence structure, word tense, readability, continuity and making your work publisher-friendly.

The first publisher invited to the first festival was W. Paul Blakey. It’s fitting that he return. He’s an obsessive scribbler—owner, director, and head pooh-bah (his words) of Twin Eagles Publishing.

Get all the details at www.festivalofwriters.com, or by calling Barb at 604 485-2732, or emailing festivalofwriters@shaw.ca.




Family Matters
Business is a lot like a marriage

By Isabelle Southcott

A couple of years ago I had an aha moment when I realized the parallels between relationships and running a small business. I recognized the similarities between successful businesses and successful relationships, particularly marriages.

Small business is a lot like marriage! We’re in love when we begin a business, we’re in love when we get married. Here’s why.


In business and relationships you have to sell yourself. Is your business idea marketable? Are you marketable? Remember you are selling a concept at first. We don’t use the word sell when dealing with people but if we’re attracted to someone we apply every marketing technique we can think of. There’s presentation, examination of assets and finally, closing the deal.


Marriage requires passion and business requires passion. Who in their right mind would get married just for the sake of getting married? Who in their right mind would start a business just for the sake of starting a business?

Most of us are so overwhelmed by feelings of love when we say I do that we fail to think straight. The same can happen when we start a business if we fail to plan. Our business concept starts in our head as an idea. We see the potential. But that’s all it is right now, potential.

The Plan

Plans are just as necessary in business as they are in life. How will you know when you get there if you don’t know where you are going? We create a business plan so that by the end we know whether or not the business we wish to start is viable. We should do the same when it comes to marriage.

Picture this. A big sheet of paper with a photo of your sweetie at the top. On one side of the list there’s a column with all the reasons why you should marry him and on the other side there’s a column with all the reasons why you shouldn’t marry him. If the whys outweigh the why-nots, go for it. If not, it’s time to employ the catch and release method because he’s not a keeper.

Same goes for business. You need a plan. Go see the folks at Community Futures and check out their self employment workshops, you’ll be glad you did.

Focus and Commitment

If your business or relationship is to be successful you need to focus. It is all too easy to digress as other opportunities present themselves. You can’t open a bakery shop and then all of a sudden decide that selling pets would be more fun. We all know that cages of rats and mice and snakes and goldfish don’t belong in a bakery. Once you say I do, your dating days are over. Once you commit to a business, commit and focus.

Yes there will times when you will want to walk away. Times when you will feel overwhelmed. It’s too much work, you don’t want to play this game any longer. People who are married feel the same way. Just ask a couple who have been married for 50 years, I bet they’ll tell you there were times that they felt like throwing in the sponge.

When this happens, keep going. Keep the target in sight. You have too much invested financially and emotionally to quit just because you had a bad week or a customer tore a strip off you.


Once you’re in business or married you realize that you can’t do it all. Whether you are running a house and raising a family or running a business, sooner or later there comes a time when you need a hand. You need to delegate. But before you do, you have to train people to help you. Your new husband may need training in the diaper changing department. Your new employee will need training too. People need to be trained and need to know what is expected if they are to succeed.

Success/Failure Rate:

Somewhere between 70 to 80 per cent of new businesses fail within the first year and only about half of those who survive the first year in business will remain in business for the next five years. The success/failure rate for marriages isn’t much better. Divorce rate in Canada is about 48%. What that means is one marriage out of every two marriages end up to divorce.

Like a business, the longer a marriage lasts, the less likely it is to fail. Yet despite these depressing odds, people are still getting married. People are still beginning new businesses. Why? Because besides love, there is one point no one talks about and that is faith. Faith in yourself. Faith in your plan. Faith in the people who work for and with you and faith in the community.

Yes, business is a lot like marriage. Before you say I do to either, research the market and plan. If you end up with a successful business or a successful marriage it isn’t because you just got lucky, it is because you planned, worked hard and had faith. Oh yes, you probably have a good sense of humour too!




CAT Scan update
Right place, right time

Eddie Needham thanks his lucky stars that he was on the ferry heading over to Comox when he had a stroke.

On October 20, 2006 Eddie and his wife Elsie were en route to Vancouver Island when Eddie had a transient ischemic attack or mini stroke.

“A stroke hits you like a bolt of lightening. At first you are confused, with me it was paralysis right away. I couldn’t stand up, I just fell over into a chair; my left arm was paralyzed. The ferry crew was very good. They took me by wheelchair to their first aid station.”

An ambulance was called and once the ferry docked in Little River Eddie was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Comox. “The physician on duty told me I’d had a mini stroke and there wasn’t much to do but wait.”

Eddie was given a CAT Scan at St. Joseph’s, which helped determine the course of treatment.

“The stroke hit me at about 9 am and I was able to walk again by about 4 pm (the same day),” he says.

Almost a year has passed since Eddie had a stroke. “It was unfortunate but I was fortunate that I was in the right place at the right time so they could use the CAT Scan for diagnostic purposes.”

A CAT Scan (computer assisted tomography) costs $3M. This form of x-ray is far superior to simple x-rays and can be life altering. So far, one million has been raised towards the purchase of the machine.

The community has been very generous with their donations but more fundraising events are planned including:




Car care is not just for guys
Tuning it up and keeping it clean adds miles to the life of your car
By Barb Rees

Brianna Beeching started motor-cross racing when she was 16. With no one in the home who could work on her bike, she turned to her neighbor who taught her to maintain it. “It just grew on me. I realized I didn’t want a desk job; I wanted to get my hands dirty.”

DO WHAT YOU LOVE: Brianna Beeching is following her passion and doing what she loves: working on cars.

When Brianna graduated from Brooks Secondary School, she took the 10-month Level 1 mechanics course at what was then Malaspina University-College. Out of nine in her class, there were four girls and the competitive spirit ran high. She finished second in the finals. While in school she did work experience at El’s Auto Tec and fell in love with the people and the work. After graduation, she asked El for a job. “I joined them in June of this year and I’ve learned so much from El and Danny.”

Should girls consider getting into trades such as mechanics? “Try it, get your hands dirty. You might like it. Do what interests you not what someone says you should do. In CAP class my teacher gave me the best advice, “Follow your passion.” “There is plenty of opportunity now for women in the trades and a growing demand for ticketed persons.”

Brianna and El provided Powell River Living with some common sense tips that will save women or those who with limited mechanical knowledge, money and frustration:

1) The mechanic should show you exactly what needs repairing. If it’s the brakes, they’ll take the tire off and show you the brakes, explaining what has to be done and why. If a mechanic won’t show or explain it to you, go elsewhere.

2) They should explain the service and the parts. El will take a picture and show it to the customer on the computer.

3) Ask lots of questions. There are no stupid questions. If a woman doesn’t get clear and respectful answers, that’s probably the wrong shop for her to trust her money and vehicle to.




Save money, save your vehicle
Good car care will pay off in the long run
By Barb Rees

Fabio Bombardir, assistant service manager, has been at Massulo Motors for 18 years. During that time he’s seen practically every vehicle problem there is to see and he knows first hand what happens when people don’t look after their vehicles.

Fabio says regular servicing will save your vehicle and save you money. Here are a few tips that will help you keep your vehicle running smoothly.

Care care at Massulo Motors

A tune-up should be done every 100,000 km on newer vehicles with platinum spark plugs or 35,000 km on non-platinum plugs. This will make your engine run better and improve fuel economy.

Check the brakes every 40,000 km. If they’re squealing, that may be normal but it could also mean something is wrong so get them checked. Treat your cooling system to a flush every five years or 100,000 km. It gets the old gunk out so it won’t eat away at the gaskets.

Service the transmission about every 50,000 km. Check the transmission fluid.

General overall servicing twice a year depending on the mileage will keep the vehicle in top form.

Timing belts should be checked at 100,000 km or they could damage pistons or valves.

With the high cost of fuel, is there anything we can do to save money on fuel? Dwayne Massulo, working beside Fab said, “No matter what gimmicks they try to sell you, don’t buy them. They are a waste of money. It comes down to driver habits. They’ve done tests and proven that good driving habits improve fuel economy. For instance, when we roar down the block only to come to a stop at the light, then gun it to start again, the mileage drops. Drive at a steady, moderate speed.”

“A clean air filter, tune-up, and correct tire pressure will save you money. Know what the correct tire pressure is by keeping a tire gauge with you and checking periodically. Too low or too high are dangerous,” Fab says.

Change the oil often or run the risk of ruining the engine. It should be changed every six months or 4,000 km, says Fab.

At Blue Tree Lube & Oil/Hand Car Wash, oil changes are about fuel efficiency and adding to the life of your vehicle, says Stu Craig, who runs Blue Tree with son Lorne and Lorne’s wife Nayumi. They even offer a gas saver service to oil and fuel system cleaners.

Car care at Blue Tree

As well it is a good idea to keep an eye on fluid levels, and the folks at Blue Tree are happy to check out your radiator cap, check your air filter, adjust your tire pressure, and do a visual chassis inspection and report.

 “We don’t pull out the wrenches, we just tell you what needs fixing. Wrong tire pressure can cause problems so we’ll adjust it and tell you what it should be,” says Stu.

Keeping your car clean of dirt, grime and especially road salt will also add to the life of your car. In the past, the business was operated on a drop by basis however they are now taking appointments.

First, the bottom part of the vehicle gets sprayed and scrubbed with special detergent, then the wheels are scrubbed, and then the entire vehicle is power-washed. Following that it is washed with gloves, and dried by hand. Next, the inside is vacuumed and the dash, console, and cup holders are wiped down before the windows washed and dried. “A final double check is done before the vehicle is handed back to you.”

 A small sedan takes about 30 minutes while larger vehicles and those that require more cleaning and attention take longer. If you’re in a hurry a pick up and delivery service is available in town.

For those who are interested in detailing, there is a menu of services. Detailing can include coat plastic with sheen, clean and condition leather which makes it last longer and stay clean longer, polish windows, cut wax, wax with either resin polish or carnauba wax, shampoo seats and rugs.



South harbour vital for visitors and commercial fleet
Also carries north harbour overflow
By Sean Percy

When it comes to choosing a place to spend the night, it’s the little things that count. “Westview has the best showers,” says commercial diver Mo Stewart.

That’s just one of the reasons that the boat he skippers, Palm Breeze, spends most nights nestled in Westview’s south harbour.

Three days a week between now and Christmas, the Palm Breeze unloads between 400 and 1,000 pounds of geoducks onto the Westview wharf, and into a refrigerated truck which then catches the 5 pm ferry to Comox, the base of operations for Fan Seafoods.

“This is our favourite home,” said Stewart, who has been working the boat for five years.

“GOOEY” GOLD: Simon Stirling holds geoducks he helped harvest with diver Mo Stewart aboard the Palm Breeze (in the background). The Fan Seafoods crew works out of Westview’s South Harbour.

That’s even more true for Simon Stirling, the new deckhand on the Palm Breeze. He’s a Powell River resident and loves the fact that working out of the Westview south harbour means he can be home with his family most nights. Unlike most of the commercial fleet, the geoduck divers, both the Palm Breeze and the Codfin, are in and out of the harbour throughout the year.

But the harbour is also home to a half dozen salmon boats and up to 30 prawn boats, as well as a couple of tugs and assorted other commercial craft. It also serves as an overflow for the north harbour, which is completely full of recreational boats in long-term moorage and has a waiting list with more than 70 names.

That leaves little room for transient traffic. Visitors are sometimes required to “raft”, tying up to other boats instead of to the dock itself.

“The more room you have, the more (transient) boats you’re going to attract. If you have vacant room and don’t have to raft, word gets out in the boating community pretty quickly,” says wharfinger Jim Parsons.



Faces of Education
The art of filmmaking teaches lessons for life

Filmmaking involves teamwork. It is about working towards a common goal. It is about inspiring audiences, answering questions and revealing information. It is about communities. It is about communicating your ideas to others.

Life also involves all of these elements and students who learn these skills and lessons are well on their way to becoming well-rounded adults. Learning about communities and teamwork, how to inspire others while communicating a message are valuable lessons that many of us don’t learn until much later in life.

Veteran filmmaker Tony Papa runs the Powell River Digital Film School at Brooks Secondary School.

CONGRATULATIONS: Tony Papa talks to graduates from last year’s film program at Brooks.

Last year, School District 47’s newly created digital film school was available to grade 12 students at Brooks Secondary School for the first time.  This five-month dual credit program is offered in conjunction with The Motion Picture Program at Capilano University. Upon graduation, students receive high school and college credit and are automatically accepted into the Capilano Motion Picture Program.

Papa and his 10-year-old daughter Talia moved to Powell River last year from Gastown where Papa had been running his own business Avanti Pictures.

Working in Gastown meant that Papa had many people come to work for him who were right out of film school. “Sometimes I would entertain their project or work with them and I thought their perspective of the industry was not accurate. Their expectations were different than the reality of the business. In a way I felt like I was running a school,” Papa explained.

While trying to enlighten these new graduates the thought occurred to Papa that maybe he could run a film school while enlightening people and teaching them why they would want to make a film.

“Sometimes an idea is not a film,” Papa explained. “It may be a book or a story; not everything is a film.”

Working as an independent filmmaker for 25 years has given Papa opportunities to travel to unusual out-of-the-way places.

“I come from a photography/music background and I got into doing mostly documentaries because it is interesting and you get to learn about things you do not know about and you get to go to places you would not dream of going,” he said.

He’s made films in Peru, China, and India but said Ethiopia is one of the coolest places he’s ever been.

“I have been fortunate in that I have been able to do the films that interest me. That is the advantage of being an independent filmmaker.”

Papa recalls years when his company, Avanti Pictures, was producing five films a year. “But there was a lot of waste. It was like a restaurant. You are throwing out good food because it was not the flavour of the month with the broadcaster.”

“I decided to stop because it became more about running the company instead of making films and then this film school idea came up.”

Because of his experience and years in the industry, Papa has some interesting friends and contacts who not only encouraged him but who came to Powell River last year as guest lecturers at the Powell River Digital Film School.

“This gives the students a really good feel of whether they want to be in the industry and they get a leg up over people just starting out.”

“They can continue on with their film studies at Cap and they have already done two courses here so they are fast tracked. They do not have to wait one or two years on the waiting list.”

The Powell River Digital Film School program is part of the trades and technical programs offered by School District 47. It begins its second year in 2009.

“Kids anywhere in BC can take advantage of the digital film school,” said Papa. “The Ministry of Education pays for this and we can billet outside students in this community. They can come from anywhere in BC and learn  here.”

Results from the first year are more than encouraging with six students continuing on to Capilano University’s film studies program, and one student going to UBC out of 10 students.

Students who are accepted in the Powell River Digital Film School study writing, cinemaphotography, production, media design, post production editing, organizational practices and teamwork. “All these things are why it’s a great place to be for students,” said Papa.

Twelve students have applied so far in digital film school course this year. The five month program runs from February to June and is for grade 12 students only who are on track to graduate at the end of the year.

Besides providing students with an incredible learning opportunity, Papa says the work done by students is in his opinion brilliant. “It shows a progression of not only what they are doing but of how they are discovering film making. They also discover their communities, their families and themselves and with that you see a certain confidence emerge.”

For instance, one assignment has students pick a person or a situation in the community, which shows someone or something going through a hard time and overcoming an obstacle. “You discover as the audience discovers. That is one of the things about films and documentaries,” said Papa.

Much of what Papa does is demystifying the process of making films. Students go on a tour of Capilano College, go to the student film festival and will take field trips to working studios.

He encourages students thinking about the film industry to check out the Powell River Digital Film School’s website at www.prdfs.ca.




Powell River Picks

Top 10 Movies
1. What Happens in Vegas
2. 88 Minutes
3. Forbidden Kingdom
4. Baby Mama
5. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day
6. Smart People
7. August
8. Bucket List
9. Love Guru
10. Made of Honor
Provided by Select Video

Top 10 Books
1. Radical Forgiveness, by Colin C Tipping
2. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, by Barbara Kingsolver
3. New Earth, by Eckhart Tolle
4. Along the Edge of the Salish Sea, by Eagle Walz
5. Desolation Sound - A History, by Heather Harbord (our apologies for incorrectly attributing this book in last month’s issue)
6. Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen
7. Climbers Guide to Powell River, by Chris Armstrong
8. Eat, Pray, Love, by Elizabeth Gilbert
9. Blackberries: Recipes from Powell River, edited by Robert Dufour
10. Darien Gap, by Martin Mitchinson
Provided by Breakwater Books






Explore Powell River


Island scenes: Click to enlarge
October 2008
Photos by Georgia Combes