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Showing posts from December, 2012

Top 5 Things to See in Victoria B.C

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1. Since Victoria is the Capital City of British Columbia, it's a given there is a rich history of politics. The historical parliament buildings were constructed in 1893. They are located on the banks of the Inner Harbour. Francis Rattenbury and his crew made an effort to use local materials, resources and expertise while constructing the Parliament Buildings.

2. Ross Bay Cemetery is a 27.5 acres site of many prolific and
historic figures in British Columbia history (Emily Carr, the Dunsmuirs, and Billy Barker are just a few). You can see Victorian style mausoleums and tall pillars from the early elite. 



3.  Butchart Gardens is 55 acres of magnificent horticultural display. This is now a Historic Site of British Columbia and it is still privately owned by family descendants. The firework display in the summer season is one of the best I've ever seen and is worth a visit. 









4. Hike one of the many beautiful trails around the Victoria Region. East Sooke Park, Mount Douglas, Thetis L…

Photo of the Day: Mount Benson (Nanaimo)

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As I was walking into Country Grocer for my morning grocery run I spotted this gorgeous view of a snow blanketed Mount Benson.

 According to Nanaimo Area Land Trust a forest fire happened on the mountain in 1951. The mountain is approximately 1000 meters above sea level. There are various starting points for the Mount Benson hike (which can take 3-5 hours depending on skill level). 

In October 1951 23 people died in worst aviation accident to that time in British Columbia history when a Casno operated by Queen Charlottes Airline en route from Kitimat to Vancouver crashed into Mount Benson at the 490 m (1,610 ft) level. Remnants remained on the slopes for many years afterwards. 

Highway Cams for Vancouver Island

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This time of year can be treacherous on the highways, so if you are heading out on the road and the weather is questionable it's a great idea to check the B.C Highway Cams to get an idea of how the weather is for your destination. Book mark this link and check it frequently! It has come in handy quite a few times for me! Most importantly, drive safe and give yourself extra time if the weather is undesirable :) 

Vancouver Island Highway Cams

Help Find Emma Fillipoff (Victoria)

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I am hoping as a community we can all rally together and find Emma safe and sound, the following information is from the Help Find Emma Fillipoff Facebook Page.

 If you know ANYTHING or have seen anyone that might fit Emma's description please contact the police ASAP.  


- Emma was last seen in the immediate vicinity of the Empress hotel between 7:30-8:30 on November 28th
- Her red Mazda MPV 1993 van was found in the Chateau Victoria parking lot, with all her belongings in it, including her passport, laptop, and recently-borrowed library books (It was NOT a white van as previously believed)
- In emotional distress; fragile and vulnerable.
- No involvement with drugs or alcohol.
- Not living on the street.
- No criminal record
- Possible smoker.
- No prior history of vanishing
- Visited Central library almost daily
- She loves animals and children. May have taken care of an elderly woman at one time. Known to be a very giving person.
- Known to have spent hours talking to the home…

Restaurant Review(10): Bayshore Restaurant & Patio (Nanaimo)

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Our "52 Vancouver Island Restaurant Reviews" in 365 daysprojectis still going strong! We decided to check out the new Bayshore Restaurant & Patio which makes up the Marinaside Resort, Nanaimo's finest accommodation on the waterfront.

We stopped in on a slow Sunday and the parking lot was relatively empty at 1240 Stewart Ave, but I wasn't complaining because that meant service would most likely be quick and prompt. From the outside I wouldn't have guessed this building was a restaurant, but we were pleasantly surprised by the sophisticated decor and pleasant atmosphere. There was a table of 4 seated in the restaurant and us. We thought their lounge area was appealing to the eye with an electric fireplace blazing in the background. We sat near a window (which would have been nicer during the day) which overlooks the marina. I highly suggest going here during day light so you can view the lovely Nanaimo harbour. 

  We were hungry and wasted no time ordering drin…

Dover Bay Secondary wins tech contest

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This music video parody of "Gangnam Style" by PSY (the most watched video on YouTube)won Dover Bay Secondary students in Nanaimo thousands of dollars worth of cutting edge educational technology. 

 It was produced for the for the annual "Flip Your Classroom"  eInstruction classroom make-over contest and they won the grand prize of about $30,000 worth of software. The technology includes electronic whiteboards, animation software and student response systems.

 Denise Montgomery, a business education teacher came across the contest and pitched it to her students. The video was recorded over 3 weeks and included 300 students from 14 different classes.

Congratulations to the Dover Bay Secondary School students and teachers!!

Photo of the Day: Black-tailed deer

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We spotted this black-tailed buck in the Ross Bay Cemetery.

If you live on Vancouver Island you've seen one of these black-tailed deer. According to statistics there are approximately 86,000 black-tailed deer on Vancouver Island (approximately 75% of all the deer in BC)

This deer often is most active at dawn and dusk, and is frequently involved in collisions with automobiles.


Deer are browsers. During the winter and early spring, they feed on Douglas-fir, western red cedar, red huckleberry, salal, deer fern, and lichens growing on trees. Late spring to fall, they consume grasses, blackberries, fireweed, pearly everlasting, forbs, salmonberry, salal, and maple. The mating or 'rutting' season occurs during November and early December. Bucks can be observed running back and forth across the roads in the pursuit of does. After the rut, the bucks tend to hide and rest, often nursing wounds. They suffer broken antlers, and have lost weight. They drop their antlers betwee…

A Visit to the Ross Bay Cemetery (Victoria)

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The historical Ross Bay Cemetery opened in 1873. This cemetery is rich with history and many of the province's premiers are buried here, as well as some famous British Columbians (Emily Carr, James Douglas, Billy Barker and Robert Dunsmuir to name a few). The cemetery is 27.5 acres.

 The cemetery was named after Isabella Ross who bought the land in the 1850s, making her the first woman in what is now known as British Columbia to own land. 

 The Victorian style cemetery contains some very elaborate mausoleums and tall pillars from the early elite. 

 Although originally thought to be full, in the late 1990s the City of Victoria discovered approximately 270 unused plots. 

 Ross Bay cemetery is also the alleged site of satanic rituals in the book Michelle Remembers.

While in Victoria one weekend we decided to stop in at the Ross Bay Cemetery and visit the history of Victoria and British Columbia. I was in awe when we discovered the grave site of famous artist Emily Carr, though I was surp…

A Roaring New Years Eve in Ladysmith!

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A 1920s themed New Years party taking place in the Festival of Lights town, Ladysmith! 

Put on your sequined headbands and break out the zoot suits and fringe!

 Location: Aggie Hall 1110 1st Avenue (Across from the Tim Horton's)
 Doors Open @ 8:00 pm
 Door Prizes • Cocktails & Hors D'Oeuvers • Dancing • Photo Props & Backdrops

Tickets are $20
 $2 drinks all night long!
 Email: roaringnewyears@hotmail.com
 Phone: 778.269.3227
 Proceeds benefit the BC Children's Hospital Neurological Ward in memory of Jaedyn Amann

Facebook Event Page

Dragon Boat Paddlers Give A Helping Hand

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 Nanaimo, BC – December 6, 2012 –Nanaimo Community Hospice recently funds generated from the 10th Annual Save On Foods Nanaimo Dragon Boat Festival this past summer. Hospice received 50% of the proceeds from the event for the first time, in the amount of $20,000 towards their $900,000 Expand the Heart of Hospice fundraising campaign. The campaign is just over the 70% point with $300,000 still left to raise.

In the past 10 years the festival has raised over $600,000, which has all gone directly back into the community. In 2010 and 2011 Hospice received a combined total of $11,800 from the Festival towards their programs.

“The majority of festival funds are generally set aside for diagnostic equipment for breast cancer, but this year we wanted to give a bit extra towards Hospice as they fundraise for a new home.” said Bob Buchanan, President, Nanaimo Dragon Boat Festival. “Nanaimo Hospice provides a very important service to the community, whether someone is dealing with dying, caregivin…

Shop Local YouTube Video (Comox Valley)

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A modern take on the classic '12 Days of Christmas' song promoting a "Shop Local' message by showcasing local businesses in the Comox Valley, BC. Music performed by the Paisley Bandits, lyrics by Terri Perrin, video production by Daniel Kooman.

The Chamber also acknowledges the following businesses and organizations, all of which participated to make the project possible: Aquatech, Blackfin Pub, Blue Moon Winery, Carmie's Café & Catering, Coastal Community Credit Union, Comox by the Sea, Comox Valley Art Gallery, Comox Valley Family Services, Comox Valley Farmers Market, Cumberland Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Courtenay BIA, Grains Bakery, Hot Chocolates, iHos Gallery, Joe Smith - Artist, Laughing Oyster Books, Mount Washington Alpine Resort, Natural Pastures Cheese, Otter's Kitchen, Shoebiz, Smokin' Joe's, Sweet Revenge Bakehouse, The Salvation Army and ValleyLinks.


The Light of Chanukah is Spreading

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Victoria, BC:  The Gulf Islands are warming this winter with the Light of Chanukah spreading through public menorah lightings at the BC Provincial Legislature, Victoria City Hall, Duncan City Square, Nanaimo City Hall, Courtenay City Hall, Campbell River City Hall and Salt Spring Islands Ganges Centennial Park. These festive events are open to the public. 
A Message from the Premier:  "As Premier of the Province of British Columbia, I am very pleased to welcome everyone to the celebration of Chanukah and the lighting of the largest public Menorah at the British Columbia Legislature. This is always a wonderful 8-day celebration for Jews and the general public as we reflect on the meaning of Chanukah a festival of rededication. British Columbia is an example to others of how we can learn from each other and strengthen our families, society and economy through the backgrounds, experiences and knowledge of others. The experience of a Chanukah celebration through the lighti…

Top 4 Outdoor Recreation Activities

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Vancouver Island is blessed with the mildest climate in Canada, therefore allowing it to be a mecca of year round outdoor recreation activities. Victoria in particular has an average daily temperature for December January and February of 5.5C. Many people living on Vancouver Island have had the pleasure of enjoying a morning on the mountain skiing, then enjoying a round of golf in the afternoon. In no particular order we have compiled a list of the most popular outdoor recreation activities on Vancouver Island (most can be enjoyed year round!)

Hiking: Some of the best hiking in the WORLD can be found on Vancouver Island. Various landscapes can include amazing beaches, rainforests and breathtaking mountain peaks. These Top 5 Vancouver Island Hikes are considered some of the best.

Mountain biking and cycling: The rugged landscapes on Vancouver Island make it mountain biking heaven. Trails range from beginner to extreme and everything in between. The Comox Valley offers the largest trail s…

Introducing the Innovation Island Technology Association

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MISTIC Announces New Name - Innovation IslandTechnology Association
Goal to Support and Grow Regional Technology Entrepreneurs
Nanaimo, BC – December 3, 2012 – Today the Mid-Island Science Technology and Innovation Council (MISTIC) announced that they have rebranded under the name Innovation Island Technology Association.Innovation Island is a new look, a refined focus and a rejuvenated direction for the organization. The change in direction was the result of a seven-month strategic plan by the MISTIC Board of Directors who conducted an extensive review of its mission, vision and strategic goals to help better serve the growing technology community.
Innovation Island’s goal is to support entrepreneurs in the Mid and North Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast to start and grow technology companies in a more focused way. The organizations will be the catalyst for expanding technology on the Island by providing entrepreneurs the opportunity to succeed. They have adopted the tagline, "

Come out and support Junior Hockey!

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If you've been sitting around disappointed because the NHL is a no go this year, may I suggest supporting your local Junior hockey club? This past weekend we took in a BCHL hockey game. The Nanaimo Clippers took on the Powell River Kings. We've also made the journey down to Victoria to watch the Royals in action! I find the Junior level hockey players play with so much more passion (and are much more affordable) than NHL hockey. There is also a sense of community that goes a long with attending a local game. Games are usually on weekends in the evening.


Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League 

The Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL) consists of nine teams in two divisions: The North Island Division consists of the Campbell River Storm, Comox Valley Glacier Kings and Oceanside Generals, Nanaimo Buccaneers; the  Kerry Park Islanders, Victoria Cougars, Peninsula Panthers, Saanich Braves and Westshore Wolves form the South Island Division.

British Columbia Hockey Leagu…