Laurie Gydé

Laurie Gydé

St. Vital community correspondent

Laurie Gydé is a community correspondent for St. Vital. Email her at lauriegyde@gmail.com

Recent articles of Laurie Gydé

Why our elders are fascinating storytellers

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

Why our elders are fascinating storytellers

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2022

I first met storyteller Ruth Christie when I was a guest speaker at the Gaynor Family Regional Library in Selkirk, reading some of my work. One of those pieces was a poem entitled I AM, about health-care workers and what they must have experienced during the time of COVID.

For some reason, the poem resonated with Ruth, and she approached me to share stories about her Indigenous roots. She was raised in Loon Straits, Man., and trained as a licensed practical nurse at St. Boniface Hospital, graduating in 1960.

As a youth, Ruth spent a year bedridden with rheumatic fever. Knowing that fishing and trapping would not be the way to make a living forever, she earned her Grade 11 and 12 by correspondence, determined to becomea nurse. The department of education stalled at forwarding her high school marks to the hospital, so she booked her own residency through the Grey Nuns and prayed that someone would drop out of class, as it was full. Luckily, Ruth found herself a seat.

“I am going to relieve the pain of others,” she said, “and be the first nurse to graduate from my community.”

Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2022

Correspondent Laurie Gydé is pictured with Indigenous elder Ruth Christie, who was named to the Order of Manitoba in 2021.

Teen Stop Jeunesse – a haven of safety, inclusion

Laurie Gydé 2 minute read Preview

Teen Stop Jeunesse – a haven of safety, inclusion

Laurie Gydé 2 minute read Wednesday, May. 11, 2022

Understanding the troubles of young people is the calling of Chris Lernowicz, the program manager at Teen Stop Jeunesse (533 St. Anne’s Rd.) After coming to Canada from Ukraine and entering an adult education class, Lernowicz proceeded to study social work. Chris’s personal mandate at Teen Stop Jeunesse is to develop sustainable programs for young people aged eight to 18. Twenty years later, he has welcomed numerous supporters, coaches and mentors to the organization.

Patrick LeBlanc, executive director at Teen Stop Jeunesse, assesses the needs of local youth, liaises with neighbourhood schools, helps develop programs, raises funds and builds partnerships with the likes of the United Way and the St. Vital – St. Boniface Rotary Club.

The choices are numerous at Teen Stop Jeunesse. It runs a food bank on the second Monday of each month, and also offers a child-care facility, a music program and literacy support. So it’s not surprising to hear that this drop-in centre sees between 30 and 40 youth per night. Anyone experiencing homelessness or in crisis mode is welcomed with open arms and no judgment.

A majority of the drop-ins live within a three-mile radius and take advantage of Teen Stop Jeunesse’s many options. There is a music studio where participants are encouraged to play an instrument of their choice, guided by a volunteer named Mario, who plays in a Winnipeg band. Together, they can mix music in a fully equipped recording studio. The child-care facility is connected to its adult education program on the second floor. Teen Stop Jeunesse’s English-language programs help young immigrants feel more comfortable at their schools.

Wednesday, May. 11, 2022

The music room at Teen Stop Jeunesse is a popular spot.

A new generation has come to call

Laurie Gydé 6 minute read Preview

A new generation has come to call

Laurie Gydé 6 minute read Sunday, Feb. 13, 2022

When Ray Giguere opened Argy’s Records and Entertainment Shop in 1982, he never expected to see a resurgence in interest for vinyl albums. However, in 2021, a pandemic year, Giguere had a record year for sales, largely due to the  support of the music community.  “COVID gave us a reason to slowdown and entertain ourselves with music and TV,” he said. “Why the switch to a new generation?” I asked.“Despite cell phones (and streaming), music lovers’  first choice is vinyl. It’s tangible. You own it. You feel it, from taking the record wrap off the jacket to putting the needle down,” Ray explained.I recall that feeling. There was something grand about the new smell of opening a new LP, sort of like a new car, then hearing the first crackle as the needle carefully landed on the record. It had a sound that that was crisp, clear and flawless . Buying vinyl was an experience. The cover of a vinyl record was often a masterpieces, the inner sleeve, the liner notes and sometimes lyrics or photos of the artists in session made it a package to look forward to. The generation that liked to rock around the clock in the ’50s and ’60s now get requests  from their children and grandchildren to join them at musical events. Have you ever looked around the arena to see who is filling the seats? It’s mom, pop and the kids, because millennials realize some of the remixed music of their favorite genre originated when Dad was still slicking his hair back and mom was using Dippity Do on hers. Did vinyl ever go away? Apparently not. Back in the day, Ray carried electronics , comics, trading cards, 45 rpm vinyl singles and 33 rpm LPs. As interest in vinyl has surged in recent years, he has revamped his space to carry more, which has brought more traffic into his store, where music lovers can discover the sounds of some of our hometown boys. The Guess Who and Mood Jga Jga and just two of the names you will find here, not just on record but in  merchandise such as unisex T-shirts, posters and ball caps. There must have been something in the water in St. Vital as it has produced a slew of well-known local musicians including Mark Reeves, Graham Shaw, Jim Kale and Bill Wallace of the Guess Who fame. Neil Young once said that Winnipeg was the music hub of Canada. It still is, as Romi Mayes,The Pumps, Sweet Alibi, Scott Nolan and Greg Leskiw are some of the local artists you will discover in the rows and rows of collectibles. For you readers, local music historian John Einarson’s Heart of Gold: A History of Winnipeg Music, is in stock if you want to turn back time. One more thing. The Giguere family is known for a line of honey products. Ringo Starr would say Honey Don’t,  but trust me, it slathers on toast smooth like jazz. Make it a play date. Visit www.argys.com  or stop by Unit 9-1604 St. Mary’s Rd. Laurie Gydé is a community correspondent for St. Vital. Email her at lauriegyde@gmail.com

When Ray Giguere opened Argy’s Records and Entertainment Shop in 1982, he never expected to see a resurgence in interest for vinyl albums. 

However, in 2021, a pandemic year, Giguere had a record year for sales, largely due to the  support of the music community. 

 “COVID gave us a reason to slowdown and entertain ourselves with music and TV,” he said. 

Sunday, Feb. 13, 2022

Photo by Laurie Gydé
The vinyl record resurgence has been a boon for Argy’s Records and Entertainment shop at 1604 St. Mary’s Rd.

Community rallies around St. Bart’s food bank

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

Community rallies around St. Bart’s food bank

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022

When you walk by the Harvest Manitoba bin at your local grocery store, have you ever  wondered if purchasing one of the $5, $10 or $20 pre-packaged bags really helps?

It’s no secret that the population of children who live in poverty is huge in  Manitoba. One in seven households experienced food insecurity in 2020.

Yet many communities are stepping up monthly to combat that. The goal? To achieve a province with zero hunger stats.

Many Canadians are $200 per month shy of paying all their bills. Imagine choosing warmth over food to maintain a budget. This, too, is contributing to the rise in child obesity. Until a lettuce is less expensive than pasta, children will not receive the proper nutrition they need.

Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022

When you walk by the Harvest Manitoba bin at your local grocery store, have you ever  wondered if purchasing one of the $5, $10 or $20 pre-packaged bags really helps?

It’s no secret that the population of children who live in poverty is huge in  Manitoba. One in seven households experienced food insecurity in 2020.

Yet many communities are stepping up monthly to combat that. The goal? To achieve a province with zero hunger stats.

Many Canadians are $200 per month shy of paying all their bills. Imagine choosing warmth over food to maintain a budget. This, too, is contributing to the rise in child obesity. Until a lettuce is less expensive than pasta, children will not receive the proper nutrition they need.

A not-so ‘community’ experience

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

A not-so ‘community’ experience

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2021

Recently I had to question the word ‘community.’ After a two-year absence from being a Christmas craft-sale vendor, I decided to take it upon myself to organize a sale for the first time.

I chose a club that was my old alma mater, since no one had rented it this year. It didn’t take long to find 24 other like minds who were anxious to display their goods and pocket a little holiday hash.

I knew zilch about the rules and regulations during this COVID period. But I did insist every participant, and shopper had to be vaccinated. Next came designing the poster.

The day the poster was fresh off the press, I delivered it to the community club. I was like a kid on Christmas morning. Immediately, one of the staff taped it to the entrance door.

Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2021

Supplied photo
The rules and regulations of running a craft sale should be better explained to potential organizers.

Conscientious fashion on Goulet Street

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

Conscientious fashion on Goulet Street

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021

Reduce. Reuse. Recreate. Rebuild.

Such is the case at Reclothify, a newly opened ‘premium thrift’ store located at 150 Goulet St.  

COO Alisha Murray wants the public to gain a healthy perspective on second-hand clothing. Here you’ll discover how to be a part of the solution when it comes to recycling clothing.

Globally, only 20 per cent of discarded textiles are recycled, meaning 80 per cent head to landfills. In 2020, these stats influenced Murray to start a company called Winnipeg Textile Recycling. Its warehouse, with the assistance of a third party, sorts through pounds of clothing, saving the best of the best, which end up on the racks at Reclothify. It’s a win-win scenario, while diverting waste from landfills.

Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2021

Supplied photo
Alisha Murray is the owner/operator of Reclothify, a 'premium thrift' store on Goulet Street.

Honouring our health-care workers

Laurie Gydé 4 minute read Preview

Honouring our health-care workers

Laurie Gydé 4 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021

I am the daughter of a nurse and a doctor. Only one great-niece has opted to follow the family tradition, working in the geriatric ward of a Kelowna hospital. The five children in our family opted to pursue other careers.

In the 1960s, we watched our father head to St. Boniface Hospital, carrying a weathered, chocolate-brown bag.

There were days when we knew a patient might have not made it through surgery, as the door to the basement would close behind his pale face when he came home.

I recall Dad testifying as a witness at a trial in Montreal. Someone was suing a drug company, insisting that a drug used in the treatment of ear problems had made their hearing worse.

Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021

Dreamstime.com
The daughter of a nurse and doctor, correspondent Laurie Gydé recently wrote a poem for her writing group acknowledging the work of health-care staff on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wooden imaginings of Murray Watson

Laurie Gydé 2 minute read Preview

Wooden imaginings of Murray Watson

Laurie Gydé 2 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 22, 2021

It is written in folklore that “the wise and the protector lies in a tree”.

Mother Nature has flourished in St. Vital’s Bois des Ésprits, which means ‘wood spirit’,  where artist/carver Murray Watson has engraved his signature into many a tree.

In 1988, Watson discovered his love for art and nature while studying graphic design at Red River Community College (as it was called then). Upon graduating, he sought less commercialism and  more realism.

His artistry paid off. In 2002, Watson won best in show in the Prairie Canada carving  competition  for a piece entitled Canada Goose, featuring eight geese on driftwood.

Wednesday, Sep. 22, 2021

Supplied photo
A sample of Murray Watson’s artistic carving work.

Every picture tells a story

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

Every picture tells a story

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021

When Susan J. Berry began her career as a resource teacher in the Louis Riel School Division, little did she know her retirement would include writing children’s books, with several featured on McNally Robinson’s bestseller list.

Books such as The Little Pink Pig and I Can Do Anything were influenced not only by her classroom experience, but by her grandchildren.

Having taught all areas of regular and special education, from kindergarten to Grade 10,with a special interest in language development and reading, Berry pursued her love of writing with these books. A self-taught artist, she even created much of the artwork in the books, although some of it lent itself to others with more graphic expertise.

Anyone with children who are beginning to learn to read or require sign language will appreciate one of her newer publications, A Says/a/, a book that asks kids to chant the letter sounds in verses, while they copy and observe a teacher or parent’s hand signs.

Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021

Supplied photo by Earl Pslanky
Retired teacher Susan Berry has become a popular children’s author.

A cornucopia of culinary-related creativity

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Preview

A cornucopia of culinary-related creativity

Laurie Gydé 3 minute read Monday, Aug. 9, 2021

Julia Child once said, “...a party without a cake is just a meeting.”

Ashley Kosowan, co-owner of Jenna Rae Cakes with her twin sister, Jenna, said the ‘aha moment’ for Jenna was when she watched an episode of Cake Boss and thought: “I can do that”.

The showcases at Jenna Rae are bursting with the popular French macarons in the most vivid of colours and flavors, alongside cupcakes and cookie sandwiches.

I asked what their most popular cake is.

Monday, Aug. 9, 2021

Supplied photo
Staff at Arabelle’s Bakery & Catering package some of the bakery’s now-famous Lagos Loaf.