Andrea Geary

Andrea Geary

St. Vital community correspondent

Andrea Geary is a community correspondent for St. Vital and was once the community journalist for The Headliner.

Recent articles of Andrea Geary

Toasting a new business

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Toasting a new business

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, Jul. 27, 2022

Weddings, barbecues, family reunions, and other special occasions fill calendars at this time of year, and wine, beer and liquor are usually part of the celebrations. This focus on alcohol can make it very tough for anyone who’s avoiding alcohol consumption. What do you pour in your glass to toast the newlyweds or guests of honour?

Shane Halliburton personally faces this dilemma as he candidly says he quit drinking alcohol almost a year ago. In a manner of turning lemons into lemonade, Halliburton’s search for good alternatives to alcoholic beverages gave rise to his new business - The Søbr Market.

Rather than only drinking soft drinks, coffee or juices, Halliburton said he was looking for premium non-alcoholic beverages, but couldn’t find many choices on Winnipeg store shelves. During a trip to the States, he discovered a wider variety of brands and realized that he could introduce some of these to Canadians.

“People want something different. I thought, we (himself and wife Jessie) may as well be the ones to do that,” he said.

Wednesday, Jul. 27, 2022

Jessie and Shane Halliburton are shown with some of the non-alcoholic beverages that they’re offering through their business, The Søbr Market.

A stitch in time

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

A stitch in time

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, Jun. 15, 2022

People’s desire to try something new during our enforced isolation of the pandemic has benefited a St. Vital business.

Barbara Best, owner of Lizzy B’s Needle Art and Custom Picture Framing, said existing and new customers ordered cross stitch, embroidery and needlepoint kits and supplies online during the past two years when her physical shop was closed.

“People were inspired to take stitching up. We already had most of our inventory on our website.”

Best credits her husband with photographing the hundreds of colours of embroidery floss and tapestry yarn she keeps in stock. This allowed customers to easily order by number using the business’ website.

Wednesday, Jun. 15, 2022

Barbara Best, owner of Lizzie B’s Needle Art and Custom Picture Framing, is pictured in her shop at 39 St. Anne’s Rd.

Food for real-life families

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Food for real-life families

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, May. 4, 2022

Family members are seated around the table with plates filled with the correct portions of vegetables, meat or another protein, and a carbohydrate. Everyone is chatting and relaxing after a day at work and school.

This traditional scenario isn’t the norm for the majority of today’s families. Both or one parent might be working outside the home and rushing to put something — anything — on the table for hungry children. Coupled with this is the time crunch caused by children’s activities such as soccer, piano lessons or dance classes.

Janine LaForte, mother of three teens, registered dietitian and owner of Real Life Nutrition has been there and done that.

“Just having the experience in my own life helps me understand my audience better and know what they’re going through,” she said.

Wednesday, May. 4, 2022

Janine LaForte runs Real Life Nutrition, which provides nutritional advice and tips to parents juggling busy lives with trying to serve nutritious meals.

New location for longstanding St. Vital business

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

New location for longstanding St. Vital business

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, Mar. 23, 2022

Mother Sandy and daughter Jenny Borowski are excited about opening the new location of their family business at 394 St. Anne’s Rd.

Borowski’s Health Shop & Day Spa, formerly situated at 437 St. Anne’s, has been a fixture in the St. Vital business scene for many years. Originally established in 1977 as Borowski’s Health Foods by Sandy’s father Joe, who was also an NDP MLA and cabinet minister, Sandy and Jenny are planning a 45th anniversary celebration in May.

Over a year ago, the mother-daughter team decided to downsize and concentrate on offering ionic foot detox and reflexology service to their clients.

“We’re both certified reflexology therapists,” Jenny said.

Wednesday, Mar. 23, 2022

Jenny (left) and Sandy Borowski are shown in the shop area of the new location of Borowski’s Health Shop & Day Spa at 394 St. Anne’s Rd.

All creatures great and small

Andrea Geary 6 minute read Preview

All creatures great and small

Andrea Geary 6 minute read Friday, Feb. 4, 2022

For Dr. Carolyn Eichkorn, owner of Winrose Animal Hospital, variety is indeed the spice of life. “There’s never a dull moment,” she said.Eichkorn assumed ownership of the hospital at 534 St. Anne’s Rd. in 2007 but the business has operated for about 30 years, serving the needs of pet owners. Eichkorn and veterinarians Amanda Malboeuf, Ingrid Sproll and Heather McDonald, treat creatures ranging from dogs and cats to hamsters to parrots and even reptiles such as iguanas, geckos and bearded dragons.Winrose’s current veterinarians are all women and Eichkorn said that’s mainly due to the fact that between 80 and 90 per cent of veterinary sciences graduates are now women. This has changed greatly from when she attended the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatoon, when men and women were more evenly represented.Eichkorn estimates that dogs make up to 50 per cent of their animal patients, 30 per cent are cats and the rest are comprised of smaller animals and exotics.“It’s never the same thing twice. All of our vets see exotics,” Eichkorn said.She said there isn’t as much information available on treating more unusual pets as there is on dogs and cats, so the vets must extrapolate from what they know about animals in general. She pointed out that some pets such as turtles and parrots can live up to 30 and 65 years respectively. “Veterinary medicine adapts to fads,” Eichkorn said, mentioning that there are fewer ferrets and pygmy hedgehogs around now than there were 10 years ago. She added that rabbits seem to be quite popular now.However some of the currently popular dog breeds, such as the doodles and short-nosed and flat-faced breeds are prone to ailments such as allergies and skin problems.Over the 30 years in which she’s practised, Eichkorn said she’s seen feline obesity become more common as cats are kept indoors.Another trend that has affected veterinarians, and not necessarily in a positive manner, is the public’s general reliance on ‘Dr. Google’ for diagnosis and treatment of animal illnesses. Eichkorn said this can result in sicker animals being brought in and owners who are skeptical of a veterinarian’s assessment.“They can get some bad advice on the internet,” Eichkorn said.She said adapting to the pandemic protocol of keeping pet owners out of the animal hospital was tough. “In general, curbside medicine was hard. It was stressful for pets and owners,” she said.She said having to communicate the findings of a pet’s examination by phone is time-consuming, as each appointment usually involves multiple calls.Eichkorn said the pandemic pet trend is real and has resulted in an uptick in Winrose’s business by between 15 and 20 per cent. “Every day we’re seeing new puppies and kittens,” she said.While a new pet can offer companionship and bring joy to people staying at home much more than they did pre-pandemic, problems can crop up particularly for dogs. They can experience separation anxiety when their owners start heading back to the office or going out more. Eichkorn said medication can sometimes help, along with recommended training.Veterinarians are health-care professionals and like many others working in this field, are sometimes overwhelmed by changes wrought by the pandemic. Eichkorn asks that pet owners remember this and be kind and patient.Andrea Geary is a community correspondent for St. Vital. Email her at ageary@mymts.net

For Dr. Carolyn Eichkorn, owner of Winrose Animal Hospital, variety is indeed the spice of life. 

“There’s never a dull moment,” she said.

Eichkorn assumed ownership of the hospital at 534 St. Anne’s Rd. in 2007 but the business has operated for about 30 years, serving the needs of pet owners. Eichkorn and veterinarians Amanda Malboeuf, Ingrid Sproll and Heather McDonald, treat creatures ranging from dogs and cats to hamsters to parrots and even reptiles such as iguanas, geckos and bearded dragons.

Friday, Feb. 4, 2022

Supplied photo
Dr. Carolyn Eichkorn is owner of Winrose Animal Hospital at 534 St. Anne’s Rd.

Support local businesses this holiday season

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Support local businesses this holiday season

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021

Holiday shopping is in full swing for many Winnipeggers. Instead of signing on to one of the popular online retailers, consider checking out locally owned businesses and keeping your dollars circulating within our community.

The Preferred Perch, owned by St, Vital resident Sherry Versluis, has operated at 1604 St. Mary’s Rd. for 26 years.

“It’s in the heart of St. Vital,” Versluis said, adding that it is one of many small independent businesses in the area.

The store name reflects Versluis’ initial concept — to cater to bird watchers by selling bird houses, feeders and feed — but as the years passed, she has diversified her inventory. Now her store is also filled with many unique gift items such as home and garden decorations, art puzzles, and stones, crystals and carvings from Brazil, Peru, India and Africa, among other countries.

Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021

Supplied photo
Sherry Versluis, owner of The Preferred Perch, is one of many area business-owners aiming to please the local community this holiday season.

Passion for natural beauty fires creativity

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Passion for natural beauty fires creativity

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021

The icy sparkle of a diamond and brilliant colours found in other precious and semi-precious stones inspire St. Vital jewelry designer and gemologist Christopher Redd.

Redd, who owns and operates Redd Line Jewellery with wife Lori, said his passion for gemstones dates back about 25 years.

“I had a great love of rocks and minerals.”

Mainly a self-taught designer, he took training in stone carving, cutting and polishing in order to showcase stones’ natural beauty in gold and silver rings, necklaces, earrings and bracelets.

Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021

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Jewelry designer and gemologist Christopher Rudd runs Redd Line Jewellery, located at 725 St. Mary’s Rd. He and wife Lori also have a booth at the St. Norbert Farmers’ Market.

Caring for four-legged companions

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Caring for four-legged companions

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021

Shawn, Nadeen and Celeste Bennett really love dogs and work to provide a safe environment for the dogs (and cats) left in their care.

The Bennetts own and operate Happy Tails Pet Resort & Spa, with locations at 596 St. Anne’s Rd. in St. Vital and 141 Samborski Dr. in Whyte Ridge. Shawn said plans are in place to open a third location next year in East Kildonan.

“I have been showing and breeding English setters since I was about age 10,” he said. He is a licensed Canadian Kennel Club dog judge and founder and publisher of Canadian Dog Fancier magazine.

While he and wife Nadeen have operated their own businesses for years, they decided to follow their passion for dogs after discussion with their daughter, Celeste.

Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021

Supplied photo
Nadeen, Shawn and Celeste Bennett own and operate two Happy Trails Pet Resort & Spa locations, in St. Vital and Whyte Ridge.

Food bank devoted to feeding community

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Food bank devoted to feeding community

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 8, 2021

If you can lift and carry 20- to 40-pound boxes and have some free time on Wednesdays, there’s a volunteer opportunity open for you.

“We’re always on the lookout for volunteers who are strong,” said Paulette Côté, lead volunteer co-ordinator for St. Mary’s Road United Church’s food bank at 613 St. Mary’s Rd.

The food bank which, Côté says, now serves approximately 240 families or a total of between 500 and 750 people each month, has been run by volunteers for over 25 years. It has always operated as an outreach project for the church’s congregation but has the support of many others as well as local businesses. Food supplies also come from Harvest Manitoba, Second Harvest and Leftovers Foundation. Fresh produce arrives from church members’ gardens as well as a community garden run by church volunteers including Côté’s husband Peter.

Food bank donations can be dropped off on Wednesdays between 9:30 and 11 a.m.

Wednesday, Sep. 8, 2021

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It takes many volunteers to keep things moving at the St. Mary’s Road United Church food bank.

Ball gets rolling again at Dakota Lanes

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Ball gets rolling again at Dakota Lanes

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021

The sound of balls rolling down alleys and pins falling are once again heard at Dakota Lanes.

The third-generation, family-operated business, located upstairs at 1085 St. Mary’s Rd., is welcoming back bowlers of all ages.

Owner Chad Van Dale gradually took over the almost 60-year-old business from his father Donald about five years ago. Van Dale’s sons Tyler and Austin now work with him, and Donald continues to be an active league bowler.

“I started working here when I was 11,” Van Dale said. “I would empty ashtrays, change towels and reset pins.”

Sunday, Aug. 22, 2021

Photo by Andrea Geary
Tyler (left) and Chad Van Dale are pictured at Dakota Lanes in St. Vital. Chad took over running the business from his father, Donald, five years ago.

ED brings new energy to Old St. Vital BIZ

Andrea Geary 5 minute read Preview

ED brings new energy to Old St. Vital BIZ

Andrea Geary 5 minute read Friday, Jul. 23, 2021

Old St. Vital Business Improvement Zone executive director Regina Teplitsky is eager for pandemic restrictions to end so she can organize some fun events designed to highlight local businesses.

Teplitsky recently assumed the executive director position with the organization first formed in 1996. Old St. Vital BIZ represents approximately 150 business owners/members in the area running from Carriere Avenue down St. Mary’s Road to Hull Avenue, and to Niakwa Road in the east.

I asked her to answer a few questions as a way of introducing herself to Lance readers.

• What do you hope to accomplish as the Old St. Vital Biz Association’s new ED?

Friday, Jul. 23, 2021

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Regina Teplitsky is new executive director of the Old St. Vital Business Improvement Zone.

Another fruitful season begins for local market

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Another fruitful season begins for local market

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Monday, May. 31, 2021

St. Vital and St. Boniface residents can tell when spring arrives - it’s when Jardins St-Léon Gardens at 419 St. Mary’s Rd. opens for the season.

Established by Lise Mulaire and Denis Rémillard in the early 1990s,the business has been run by their children Janelle, Luc and Colin, along with cousin Daniel Rémillard, for the past five years, gradually expanding their products and services each year.

Colin looks after marketing and public relations. Interviewed on a hot, sunny afternoon while staff unloaded bags of soil and customers lined up to enter the market, he was pleased to talk about the business’ most recent growth. The partners now own the entire building that shares their parking lot. Colin said it contains their office, storage space, a large cooler and can be used for staff meetings.

“We decided to paint the building barn red because we want to have a barn on the property,” he joked.

Monday, May. 31, 2021

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Siblings Janelle, Colin and Luc Rémillard and cousin Daniel Rémillard are pictured at Jardins St-Léon Gardens in St. Vital.

Offering tasty meals for one or more

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Offering tasty meals for one or more

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Thursday, Apr. 29, 2021

The exterior sign at 996 St. Mary’s Rd. might read ‘CJL Specialty Catering’, but it has been home base for Les Filles Cuisine for the past few years.

Les Filles Cuisine is a full-service catering company run by co-owners Denys Curle and Michelle Walker, both of whom grew up in St. Vital. Curle is a Red Seal chef who provides the culinary expertise while Walker has a background in finance so looks after that side of the business. The women have worked together for the past six years after meeting on a movie set.

Walker said her husband Corey works in Manitoba’s film industry. After she left her job as a financial planner in 2005, she began offering food service on movie sets. When she met Curle, she asked her why she wasn’t operating a catering business, and soon Les Filles Cuisine was launched.

Curle said she hadn’t originally intended to become a chef. In fact, she was pursuing a master’s degree in geology when she decided to change her career path and train at Stratford Chefs School in Ontario.

Thursday, Apr. 29, 2021

Photo by Andrea Geary
Les Filles Cuisine co-owners Michelle Walker (left) and Denys Curle are shown inside their St. Vital business.

Plenty of sweet treats at Double D’s

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Plenty of sweet treats at Double D’s

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Wednesday, Mar. 31, 2021

Even in a pandemic, many people crave a sweet dessert. This yearning has helped to keep a family-owned St. Vital business open despite very challenging business conditions.

Angela Song, who co-owns Double D’s Cheesecake & Coffee House at 18-200 Meadowood Dr., with her father, Larry Song, said their decision to sign on with Skip the Dishes and Door Dash a few months prior to the pandemic’s start early last year was a wise one. Coupled with effective social media campaigns, deliveries have saved the business after they had to close their doors to walk-in customers to follow provincial orders.

“We went from 15 to 20 walk-in customers a day to zero,” she said. “Our Skip orders tripled or quadrupled.”

She also credited their decision last summer to work with a marketing company to improve their social media presence with helping them stay in touch with loyal customers and attract new ones.

Wednesday, Mar. 31, 2021

Photo by Andrea Geary
Larry Song (from left) and children Michael and Angela are pictured inside their St. Vital business, Double D’s Cheesecake & Coffee House at 18-200 Meadowood Dr.

Something’s fishy in St. Vital

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Something’s fishy in St. Vital

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021

Watching the arms of a live sea anemone wave gently as colourful fish swim past can help ease your COVID-19-induced stress. At least that’s what twin brothers Derrick and Lyndon Jameson are suggesting to their customers.

The brothers, age 30, are co-owners of Into the Blue, a saltwater and freshwater ecosystem supplier. Local drivers, cyclists and pedestrians have likely spotted the business’ bright blue lighted sign at 156 St. Anne’s Rd.

Inside, customers can browse through open tanks of colourful sea creatures including living coral, starfish, invertebrates, and a multitude of saltwater and freshwater fish. A pond near the front holds two stingrays while another at the back is filled with orange, cream, white and black koi. Children are able to buy a handful of fish food for a quarter and feed the friendly koi.

Into the Blue also stocks various sizes of tanks and equipment and supplies. Customers are welcome to come in for some expert advice on caring for their aquariums and the Jamesons keep busy servicing aquariums in Winnipeg businesses and homes. Their biggest contract to-date was to design the filtration system for Assiniboine Zoo’s stingray exhibition that opened in May 2019.

Wednesday, Mar. 3, 2021

Andrea Geary
(From left) Twin brothers Lyndon and Derrick Jameson are shown next to one of the freshwater aquariums inside their St. Vital business Into the Blue.

Business offers underwater adventure

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Business offers underwater adventure

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021

Wayne Kolomi, who co-owns Diver City Scuba with wife Jacqui Dufault, attributes his initial interest in scuba diving to French explorer and scientist Jacques-Yves Cousteau.

Cousteau’s popular TV show, The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau, aired when Kolomi was a youngster. He said he was fascinated by the world Cousteau revealed.

Meaghan Noakes, an instructor at Diver City Scuba, said her passion for diving was sparked by vacations with an aunt who lived in the Caribbean.

“You get the bug,” Noakes said.

Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021

Photo by Andrea Geary
Wayne Kolomi, who co-owns Diver City Scuba with his wife, Jacqui Dufault, is pictured here with diving instructor Meaghan Noakes in the store at 731 St. Mary’s Rd.

Updog Boutique sales tick up during pandemic

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Updog Boutique sales tick up during pandemic

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021

Shoplifters at Leslie Watson’s business usually have four legs and run away carrying their stolen goods in their mouths.

“We’ve had a few puppy shoplifters,” she said.

Watson, a St. Vital resident, opened Updog Boutique in June 2019 after she and her father renovated a 14-foot trailer to create a mobile shop. The trailer, with a ramp to allow canine customers to walk up, was open for business at Winnipeg dog parks, pop-up markets, Winnipeg Beach’s Boardwalk Days and a charity event in Morden throughout that summer. Little did she know that what she thought would be a seasonal business would become her main employment focus due to the pandemic.

“This (Updog Boutique) was supposed to be my side hustle,” Watson said.

Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021

Photo by Andrea Geary
Updog Boutique owner Leslie Watson and her goldendoodle Murtaugh have enjoyed a busy holiday season.

Mainly because of the chicken fingers

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Mainly because of the chicken fingers

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Monday, Dec. 7, 2020

Asked what food item is her store’s top seller, and Sandi Boulanger doesn’t hesitate in answering.

“It’s our chicken fingers,” she said. Boulanger added that a bride and groom ordered some for their wedding reception dinner and former Winnipeggers who come back to the city to visit have made a point of asking that the fingers be served.

Chicken fingers are one of a multitude of frozen, ready to heat and serve items that Boulanger sells at Hoffmann’s Fine Foods, located at 9-1504 St. Mary’s Rd. in St. Vital. Other products include lasagna, meatballs, ribs, veal, hamburgers, appetizers and cookies. Sandi said all are made locally from ingredients that are sourced within the province.

“They are real foods with no extra preservatives or additives.”

Monday, Dec. 7, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
Carmen Boulanger, the daughter of owner Sandi Boulanger, is pictured at the sales counter of Hoffman’s Fine Foods.

People are saying it with flowers

Andrea Geary 2 minute read Preview

People are saying it with flowers

Andrea Geary 2 minute read Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted people to look for ways to show their affection for loved ones from a distance — one way of doing this is by sending a beautiful floral bouquet.

Lakewood Florist & Gifts co-owner Jonathan Halldorsson said that, despite government restrictions on Winnipeg retailers, his shop at 310 St. Anne’s Rd. is doing more business now than a year ago.

“Last year was a very bad year for florists right across the city of Winnipeg. Business was way down everywhere.”

He said that a combination of online orders through the Lakewood Florist & Gifts’ website and in-person orders since the store reopened to the public on May 1 have helped turn 2020 into a more profitable year to-date.

Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
Jonathon Halldorson shows off his floral wares at Lakewood Florist & Gifts. He reports that his business, which he co-owns with Rona-Leigh Rempel, has fared well this year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

A touch of Thailand in St. Vital

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

A touch of Thailand in St. Vital

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020

You might not have a chance to explore Thailand’s natural beauty and exotic culture any time soon, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic,

However, with the recent opening of Erawan Thai Shop at 6-741 St. Mary’s Rd., you can find a small piece of traditional handmade home decor, jewelry or clothing to add a touch of Thailand to your home and wardrobe.

Erawan Thai Shop owner Kawalee Namwicha is happy to welcome customers and show them the variety of imported goods in stock.

“Everything is imported from Thailand,” she said, adding that a family connection to a Thai export company helps her source her wares.

Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
From left: Erawan Thai Shop owner Kawalee Namwicha and her sister-in-law Phaiwan Sarrapanya are shown in the new shop at 6-741 St. Mary’s Rd. in St. Vital.

Enviromentally friendly weddings

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Preview

Enviromentally friendly weddings

Andrea Geary 4 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 9, 2020

Dressing for weddings, graduations and special occasions can be a costly venture, especially when brides and grads will wear their gorgeous dress just once.

Appealing to customers’ desire to save money while looking stunning is one of Pearl & Birch’s main draws. Located at 539 St. Mary’s Rd., owner Amanda Murdock says Pearl & Birch is Manitoba’s only full-service bridal and formal wear consignment shop. Decorated in a welcoming manner and featuring lovely antique furniture and fixtures, the shop appears small when viewed from the front, but extends a long way back to include a separate room for graduation dresses and a comfortable area for wedding party members to help their bride choose a dress.

“We’ve made it beautiful and bridal using recycled and upcycled decor,” Murdock said.

Pearl & Birch also sells shoes and jewelry, including handmade creations by Winnipeg’s Luna & Stone, veils and purses. Murdock said she offers reasonably priced dry-cleaning and handwashing service for bridal and formal wear and she employs a seamstress who does alterations.

Wednesday, Sep. 9, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
Amanda Murdock runs Manitoba’s only full-service bridal and formal wear consignment shop out of her 539 St. Mary’s Rd. store, Pearl & Birch.

St. Mark’s Yoga fosters community

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

St. Mark’s Yoga fosters community

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020

Drivers heading south on St. Mary’s Road in St. Vital may notice a wooden sign advertising yoga situated at the St. Mark’s Place corner.

Sharing space in St. Mark’s Anglican Church’s hall (15 St. St. Mark’s Pl.) with Little Saints Learning Centre, Yoga at St. Mark’s has been a community touchstone for over 20 years. Instructor Corey Lakusiak said she believes the group’s focus on looking for meaningful community and a path for health and wellness holds a deep appeal for its loyal students.

Lakusiak’s mother Lynn founded the group in 1998. She was an aerobics teacher who began to study and practise yoga to deal with a health concern.

“We still have some of the original students who come,” Lakusiak said. “We’re a simple place.”Lynn and Corey now share teaching duties with Kathy Baudic and Kathleen Tomy, and they all follow the Anusara practise, a modern form of Hatha yoga. Anusara is said to blend the art of the human spirit with the science of biomechanics for a transformative and spiritually uplifting experience. Lynn was certified as one of Canada’s first Anusara instructors in 2010.

Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
(From left) Yoga at St. Mark’s instructors Corey and Lynn Lakusiak and Kathy Baudic and Kathleen Tomy are shown with teacher trainer Barrie Risman (centre) following a yoga training session.

Staying creative in a pandemic

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Preview

Staying creative in a pandemic

Andrea Geary 3 minute read Tuesday, Jul. 21, 2020

Sharon Reimer shows her creativity in the scrapbooks, keepsakes and cards she designs, as well as in the nimble way she runs her business, The Scrapbook Cottage.

Reimer opened the doors of her new location at 1063 St. Mary’s Rd. in early February, only to have to close to the public about a month later.

“We couldn’t even plan a grand opening,” she said.

However, thanks to the goodwill and loyalty shown by customers who patronize her Winnipeg and Steinbach (363 Main St.) locations, Reimer has been able to overcome challenges inflicted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tuesday, Jul. 21, 2020

Photo by Andrea Geary
The Scrapbook Cottage owner Sharon Reimer (left in all photos) and store manager Kathy Biondi pose in front of the store's new location at 1063 St. Mary's Rd.

Creating a different beat in SFX

Andrea Geary 2 minute read Preview

Creating a different beat in SFX

Andrea Geary 2 minute read Wednesday, Jul. 1, 2020

Juno Award-winning drummer Tyson Unrau began offering online drumming lessons well before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

For the past eight years, 31-year-old Unrau has taught students from ages four to 70 who live across Manitoba, using Skype regularly with the occasional in-person lesson.

“My students live all over Manitoba,” he said. “I used to have Skype lessons myself.”

Unrau, his wife and two young children moved to St. Francois Xavier from Winnipeg last fall. He grew up in MacGregor, Man. and said his wife also grew up in a rural area, so they decided toleave the city for a quieter community to raise their five- and two-year-old children.

Wednesday, Jul. 1, 2020

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St. Francois Xavier resident Tyson Unrau, shown here drumming with Christian pop band The Color, was teaching drums online long before the COVID-19 pandemic.