Free Press
Ticking off every box
 ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ 

Ticking off every box

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

This coming Tuesday (May 24) at 9 a.m., community leader and all-around legend Mitch Bourbonniere is hosting a riverbank cleanup at the corner of MacDonald Avenue and Gomez Street, and he’s recruiting volunteers to come and help. People interested should bring some work gloves and wear heavy-duty footwear. Everyone is welcome and encouraged to join in! (If you’re scared to go alone, don’t be. It will be an awesome way to make new friends while doing something awesome. Tell Mitch I sent you.) If you have questions, reach out to the man in charge at 204-795-1741.


On Tuesday, I picked up my daughter from daycare. When we got home, I was tired and ill-prepared to make dinner. (I am the queen of forgetting to pull things out of the freezer in the morning to thaw.) So, I figured I might as well jump on the ol’ food delivery app and order something for my kid who kept telling me she was starving her head off.

I must preface this story by telling you I don’t order food off the app very often. I’m a bit of a novice at it. So, when I punched in her Happy Meal order (cheeseburger, just ketchup) I ticked off every box on the app eliminating all the other items that come on a cheeseburger. Easy peasy. I went about my business, waiting for her food to arrive, when a strange number called my phone — I don’t know about any of you but after work hours when I am not expecting a phone call, I panic a little bit when an unknown number comes in. (I know, I know this is ridiculous.) As I was debating whether or not to answer, the call went to voicemail. 

I checked my messages right away (even though I hate that function, too) and it was a woman from McDonalds. “Hi, Shelley, this is so-and-so from McDonalds…” They were calling me to let me know that I went a little bit too far on my special order when I was ticking off those boxes. Apparently, I had ordered a piece of cheese with Ketchup on it. That’s right. No bun or burger patty or any of the other stuff (that I didn’t want.) I had somehow ordered a piece of cheese with Ketchup on it. As I relay the story to you, I’m nearly falling off my chair, laughing. Wow.

So, I called McDonalds back right away, and as soon as someone picked up I was still laughing hysterically but ready to amend my mistake, so as not to hold anyone up. The fellow on the other end of the phone had a good chuckle, too, and all was good. They added the patty and bun to my botched order. All was great once the food was delivered. Bless the folks at my local McDonalds for calling to check in.

I hope you all have a wonderful long weekend. And if you are able, please join Mitch and the crew for the riverbank cleanup. (And spread the word to anyone who may be interested!)

Shelley Cook

Shelley Cook, Columnist

Shelley Cook


Taylor Allen writes about Riya Donnelly, a 17-year-old athlete from Charleswood, who recently committed to play university basketball for the Algoma Thunderbirds in Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. She left Oak Park High School to play her Grade 12 season in the inner-city at Daniel McIntyre Collegiate Institute. Aside from her athletic achievements, Donnelly also gives back to the community at the Manitoba Aboriginal Sports and Recreation Council. Read more here.

Riya Donnelly, a grade 12 basketball player who is going to play college ball at Algoma University, poses for a portrait at Daniel McIntyre Collegiate Institute in Winnipeg. (Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Free Press)

Allan Small writes about the two Manitoban acts who picked up JUNO awards this weekend! Will Bonness, a University of Manitoba jazz studies professor and long-time pianist at jazz shows around Winnipeg, won his first Juno on Saturday night for Jazz Album of the Year, and The Color — the Manitoba pop band of Jordan Janzen, James Shiels, Larry Abrams and Tyson Unrah, whose songs focus on Christian faith — won for Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album of the Year for the 2021 album No Greater Love. Read the full story here.

Manitoba band the Color won its second Juno for Contemporary Christian/Gospel Album in Toronto on Saturday.(Tijana Marti / The Canadian Press)



Every week Aaron Epp shows us some of the greatest volunteers in this province. This week, he profiled Matthew Armet, a dance instructor who saw an opportunity to make a difference when he learned Big Brothers Big Sisters of Winnipeg was looking for mentors. This story is all kinds of lovely. Please check it out here.

Matthew Armet says it has been meaningful to share about his experience as a gay man with a young person who is exploring his gender identity.(Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press)

Katie May writes about Karissa Maendel and Judith Maendel (sisters-in-law), two of only a handful of Hutterite nurses in the province. The pair is advocating for more Hutterite women to join the profession, and hopes to encourage Hutterite girls everywhere, including Karissa’s two young daughters. The story is wonderful. Read it here.

Judith Maendel (left) and her sister-in-law Karissa Maendel at the Baker Colony. They work 12-hour shifts a few days a week at the hospital and still cook, garden and work at the colony on their off time.(Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Free Press)

This week, I wrote about 57-year-old Vivian Ketchum, who will be graduating with her high school diploma next month. This column was a true honour to write. Vivian’s story is full of joy and sorrow. I cried as I was transcribing our interview. If you haven’t already, please check out her story.

Vivian Ketchum poses for her high school graduation photo while holding the moccasins of her late son, Tyler. (Supplied)

You might also want to read

Shear skill

Manitoba artist honours royals with sculptures meticulously crafted out of Prairie wool Read More


Signs of the times

Canadian Museum for Human Rights replaces “male” and “female” icons to make public washrooms gender-inclusive spaces Read More


A slow trek through history

Ox cart’s wooden wheels will follow fur trade’s trail Read More


Flush with excitement

Permanent, safe washroom unveiled on Main Street Read More


On guard for thee in William Whyte

Devoted, persistent activist keeps close eye on health and safety issues, spends hours calling 311 to get them addressed in electoral ward that accounts for 36 per cent of city’s ‘neighbourhood livability’ complaints Read More


More Great Reads From Us

Discover our other email alerts or manage your email subscriptions by clicking here.


Email Preferences | Privacy Policy | About Us

Winnipeg Free Press
1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6


A strong Manitoba
needs a strong Free Press

Fb Tw Inst