Susan Huebert

Susan Huebert

Elmwood community correspondent

Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood.

Recent articles of Susan Huebert

Elmwood’s history in street names

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Preview

Elmwood’s history in street names

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022

Whether in school or elsewhere, learning a city’s history through its street names can be fascinating. In Elmwood, as in other parts of Winnipeg, names reflect the people who have built up the area, the places they went, and much more.

As the Historic Elmwood Cemetery’s website notes, the name “Elmwood” first applied to the cemetery before becoming the designated name for the surrounding area. Although this is a reversal of the usual pattern of a smaller area being named for the larger one, the trees in the cemetery were the inspiration first for naming the graveyard and then for the entire area.

People who know the John Henderson School might assume that Henderson Highway is named for the early pioneer, but the street is named instead for an automotive pioneer named Samuel Robert Henderson, according to the Manitoba Historical Society (MHS) website. Many other street names in the city similarly honour entrepreneurs and prominent citizens of all kinds, giving later generations the chance to investigate the contributions of the people who came before them.

Apart from Henderson Highway, another of the area’s major streets going north-south is Watt Street, which runs along much of the eastern edge of Elmwood before becoming Archibald Street. The origin of Watt Street is somewhat uncertain, as the MHS website lists the source as a local landowner named James Watt, while Mosaic website lists another local landowner named Walter L. Watt as the source of the name.

Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2022

The area of Winnipeg known as Elmwood came to be known by that name after the Elmwood Cemetery was created in 1902.

A good start to summer in Elmwood

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Preview

A good start to summer in Elmwood

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Wednesday, Jun. 29, 2022

After more than two years of separation from friends and family, having a chance to interact with others can be especially fun. Two recent events with the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation, the open house on May 28 and Happy Days on Henderson on June 11, were good opportunities for people to connect with others and to learn about the programs and services available in the area.

Food, childcare, and exercise are some of the most basic needs that many people have. Tots in Elmwood and Better Access to Groceries were two of the programs featured in the recent open house, while a table of information dedicated to floor curling and another on carpet bowling gave visitors a chance to consider fun activities for the coming year.

Information was available on many different programs and services at the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation, from energy-saving assistance to rent assistance, the Bear Clan patrol, and more. Besides helping people to find the programs that could help them, the open house gave members of the community a chance to meet others from the neighbourhood and possibly to form new friendships and connections that could help them in years to come.

Happy Days on Henderson gave Elmwood residents another chance to learn about the community or just have fun. A bouncy spaceship and slide helped keep the children occupied, while the food available for visitors included hot dogs, fruit, lemonade, and more. As the CNRC Facebook page states, the aim of this event is “To promote and organize community participation in an annual celebration among the local residents of northeast Winnipeg.”

Wednesday, Jun. 29, 2022

At Happy Days on Henderson, Frontier College had a reading tent where children could read a book with one of the interns and then work on a craft related to the story. This year, the choice was a book called Malaika’s Costume.

Art for spring and beyond

Susan Huebert 2 minute read Preview

Art for spring and beyond

Susan Huebert 2 minute read Wednesday, May. 18, 2022

After a long winter, having a bit of colour can be encouraging, especially when it comes in the form of art. The Spring into Summer Art Show & Sale, held from April 29 to May 1st at Elmwood/EK Active Living building, was an ideal opportunity for people to brighten up their homes while supporting local artists.

Every year, the Local Colours art group holds an exhibit and sale to showcase the work of local artists. As the organization’s Facebook page notes, the “Local Colour Art Group is an organization of artists dedicated to the creation of art, and its promotion in the community.” One of the difficulties for artists is finding an audience for their art beyond family and friends. The annual show and sale is one opportunity to attract the wider community.

Many people draw or paint as children, but it can be difficult to continue much beyond that without support from other artists. The Local Colours group “strives to provide a forum for members in which to gather to paint and to share their interests, skills and experiences,” as the group’s website states. Workshops, virtual paint and chat sessions, and the annual show and sale are among the ways that the artists in the group help support each other.

The annual show and sale is a good opportunity community, as well. For many people, art can seem distant and formal, something confined to artists whose works are displayed in galleries or shown only among the wealthy.

Wednesday, May. 18, 2022

The Local Colour artists’ group recently had a show and sale in Elmwood.

Home Suite Home helps people in dark times

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Preview

Home Suite Home helps people in dark times

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Wednesday, Apr. 6, 2022

In hard times, a safe place to stay and support to deal with problems can make all the difference for people who are struggling. The past two years have been difficult for everyone, but especially for people dealing with addictions. However, 40 people in the Elmwood area will soon be able to fill some of their basic needs at Riverwood House through the Home Suite Home project.

Riverwood House is a 40-unit apartment complex at the corner of Stadacona Street and Talbot Avenue. The project originated with the Riverwood Church Community, which includes The Firehall and The Garage on Talbot Avenue and The Warehouse and The Shed on Gordon Avenue. The newest addition to the Riverwood buildings, as the church’s Home Suite Home website notes, is intended to provide “a safe and stable space to support individuals on their recovery journey through the impact of addictions.”

Recently, Riverwood Church began its Home Suite Home initiative. Although a capital fund covered the cost of construction of the building, much more was needed to turn the apartments into homes. Through the initiative, people from the church or the community could donate towards the purchase of necessities for living in the apartments, including furniture, dishes, and anything else that people might need.

All 40 suites received full sponsorship within two weeks, and the plan is to work towards occupancy by the end of April. According to Jon Courtney, community pastor for Riverwood, “housing is always a prominent issue” in the Elmwood area. Together with a rise in substance abuse, especially during the pandemic, the need for safe, supportive housing in the area is substantial.

Wednesday, Apr. 6, 2022

The Home Suite Home initiative of Riverwood House offers bachelor apartments to those recovering from addiction.

Celebrating reading at Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Celebrating reading at Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Feb. 25, 2022

 

Some people’s homes are full of books and magazines, or they own e-readers loaded with fiction or nonfiction volumes on all kinds of subjects. For other people, reading is a rare activity, something that they do only when necessary. However, I Love to Read Month in Winnipeg is a chance to bring these two groups together. The Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop at 445 Chalmers Ave. can help encourage reading with its large selection of used books.According to the Reading Manitoba website, “I Love to Read Month is a month-long celebration of all things reading.” Reading can inform, entertain, and connect people in ways that other forms of communication cannot. This year’s theme is “Moving forward with hope,” a very necessary theme with the many hardships the COVID-19 pandemic has brought. Many people celebrate the power of reading in their homes and schools. Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop has recognized the month with a special display of books for people to look at and purchase. The display for February’s celebration, placed just in front of the book section, gives shoppers a taste of the volumes available at the store. Finding a good book to read can be difficult, especially with the wide variety of choices available. A useful feature of the Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop’s acknowledgement of I Love to Read Month is a board where shoppers or volunteers can write their suggestions of good books. Encouraging an interest in books is part of the organization’s mission to build up the neighbourhood. As the shop’s Facebook page notes: “Our volunteers love to read!”   Besides reminding shoppers of the power of reading, the thrift shop’s participation in this month’s celebration makes good use of resources. Books can often accumulate on people’s shelves, gathering dust for years until they are sold or thrown out. Buying books at a thrift shop helps reduce waste while also giving shoppers the chance for some inexpensive reading. A thrift shop is not like a regular bookstore where readers can find a wide range of the newest titles, but it still offers a chance for serendipity. The selection of books always changes, giving people a reason to come back frequently. During I love to Read Month and beyond, the thrift shop at Watt and Chalmers is a good place to visit for information and entertainment.Readers might even find something that helps them to move forward in hope.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood.  

Some people’s homes are full of books and magazines, or they own e-readers loaded with fiction or nonfiction volumes on all kinds of subjects. For other people, reading is a rare activity, something that they do only when necessary. 

However, I Love to Read Month in Winnipeg is a chance to bring these two groups together. The Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop at 445 Chalmers Ave. can help encourage reading with its large selection of used books.

Friday, Feb. 25, 2022

Photo by Susan Huebert
Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop is reconizing with a special display of books in front of its book section.

How to build a strong future

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

How to build a strong future

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Monday, Jan. 10, 2022

After a long and often depressing pandemic, many people need a new start, a way to build a better and brighter future for themselves. For the unemployed or underemployed in the Elmwood area, the Building Futures program might just be the right thing.Over the past two years, many people have lost their jobs or found themselves overwhelmed and stressed by the new demands placed on them through working from home. Others might be underemployed or working in a field that makes little use of their skills and interests. For anyone who fits into these categories, learning better techniques for job searching could prove very useful.The Building Futures initiative run through the Elmwood Community Resource Centre at 75 Brazier St. and 545 Watt St. is a free, five-week program beginning Jan. 13 for permanent residents, naturalized Canadian citizens, and work permit holders. Since the program will take place over Zoom, access to a computer is necessary, but the hours of study will be flexible.Searching for a job can be a daunting task with many different aspects to consider. The Building Futures program will deal with many of the most common factors, with interview tips, sessions on resumé and cover-letter writing, access to the hidden job market, and segments on skills such as CPR and first aid. Live video chats and online workshops will give participants a chance for personal connections.   According to the official announcement from the Elmwood Community Resource Centre, the goal of the program is “to support those that may face barriers to employment.” These barriers may be related to language, culture or a number of other factors but they can cause significant problems for people when they look for work. The program is “built upon understanding and identifying the unique skills, education and experience of our participants.” With barriers to employment potentially coming in many forms, the government-run Building Futures program first aims to identify these barriers and then to work through them. After that, people can learn what it takes to get a job in the current economy.Although the pandemic has made in-person classes and interactions impossible, students can still make important connections with employers in Winnipeg and elsewhere. Program instructors can also help in this regard, guiding participants towards the resources they need in their job search. Anyone interested in particiapting in this program should contact the Elmwood Community Resource Centre at 204-982-1720.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

After a long and often depressing pandemic, many people need a new start, a way to build a better and brighter future for themselves. For the unemployed or underemployed in the Elmwood area, the Building Futures program might just be the right thing.

Over the past two years, many people have lost their jobs or found themselves overwhelmed and stressed by the new demands placed on them through working from home. Others might be underemployed or working in a field that makes little use of their skills and interests. For anyone who fits into these categories, learning better techniques for job searching could prove very useful.

The Building Futures initiative run through the Elmwood Community Resource Centre at 75 Brazier St. and 545 Watt St. is a free, five-week program beginning Jan. 13 for permanent residents, naturalized Canadian citizens, and work permit holders. Since the program will take place over Zoom, access to a computer is necessary, but the hours of study will be flexible.

Monday, Jan. 10, 2022

Photo by Susan Huebert
The Elmwood Community Resource Centre is offering a program called Building Futures to unemployed or underemployed people in the area.

A different way to shop

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

A different way to shop

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Saturday, Dec. 18, 2021

At this time of the year, people are busy buying gifts for friends and family. While many people shop at stores that sell new clothes, games, and toys, others might choose to help reduce waste while saving money. At the Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop on Chalmers Avenue, shoppers have a chance to buy in a way that helps to make a good use of resources.People look forward to different aspects of November and December, depending on their viewpoints. For some people, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are highlights of the season, with the chance to buy all kinds of goods at bargain prices. Others might prefer to celebrate Buy Nothing Day and Giving Tuesday, with their emphasis on the responsible use of resources and care for people in need. Looking for gifts or items for daily use at a thrift shop is one way of combining the two different sides of the season. According to the Mennonite Central Committee thrift shop’s website, one of the challenges for shoppers is to “commit to help reduce textile waste by checking out a thrift shop before you look at any new clothing for the rest of the year.” Besides the clothes are the second-hand dishes, books and, occasionally, even a bicycle or two.The thrift shop on Chalmers is part of MCC’s work in helping communities throughout Winnipeg and other parts of Manitoba. People donate their used items to the store, and volunteers sort through them and arrange them. When shoppers buy these items, the proceeds go to a number of organizations, including the Chalmers Community Resource Centre, Elmwood High School,and Siloam Mission. Meanwhile, people make good use of the resources they have.According to the Thrift World website, clothes were once expensive items that people patched and kept as long as possible. However, that changed with the Industrial Revolution, when clothes became cheap and easy to produce. As the cost of buying clothes decreased, textile waste increased. According to the Textile Waste in Canada website, North Americans throw away ten million tonnes of clothing every year. Thrift shops can help give clothes books, dishes, and jewelry new homes. With the added benefit of supporting many important local organizations such as the Elmwood East Kildonan Active Living Centre, shopping at the Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop is a good choice.      Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

At this time of the year, people are busy buying gifts for friends and family. While many people shop at stores that sell new clothes, games, and toys, others might choose to help reduce waste while saving money. At the Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop on Chalmers Avenue, shoppers have a chance to buy in a way that helps to make a good use of resources.

People look forward to different aspects of November and December, depending on their viewpoints. For some people, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are highlights of the season, with the chance to buy all kinds of goods at bargain prices. Others might prefer to celebrate Buy Nothing Day and Giving Tuesday, with their emphasis on the responsible use of resources and care for people in need. 

Looking for gifts or items for daily use at a thrift shop is one way of combining the two different sides of the season. According to the Mennonite Central Committee thrift shop’s website, one of the challenges for shoppers is to “commit to help reduce textile waste by checking out a thrift shop before you look at any new clothing for the rest of the year.” 

Saturday, Dec. 18, 2021

Canstar file photo
The Kildonan MCC Thrift Shop offers people a chance to shop responsibly and inexpensively.

What’s up in Elmwood this winter?

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

What’s up in Elmwood this winter?

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Monday, Nov. 22, 2021

Winter came suddenly to Winnipeg this year, with heavy snow after a long, warm fall. The weather has brought an abrupt end to many activities but could turn people’s attention elsewhere. In Elmwood, while winter has changed the character of outdoor activities, new and continuing opportunities can keep people occupied this season.For many people, cycling is an activity that ends when either the temperatures drop, or ice and snow make it too difficult or dangerous for them. Cyclists in the Elmwood area have two special features to help them — the active transportation bridge between Midwinter Avenue and Point Douglas and the Northeast Pioneers Greenway along the former railway bed between Gateway and Raleigh.Some people are braver than I am about winter cycling, but I can still walk, at least on packed snow. In summer, the paved trail is lined with trees, bushes, flowers, and prairie grasses. With many of these plants dead or dormant in the winter, the trail will look different for the next few months. Some activities, however, are ongoing. At the Elmwood Community Resource Centre, employment and language training are good choices for people who want useful activities for the winter.For people aged 18 to 30, the Elmwood Youth Employment Experience can help participants gain the skills and information they need for finding work. This 17-week program helps train learners in skills such as resumé and cover letter writing, interview skills, and more. As the organization’s website notes, the program is for anyone who is “ready to learn new skills, work hard, and set goals.” Information is available at employmentoutreach@elmwoodcrc.ca or 204-982-1720, ext. 207.Language training is important at any time, but the onset of winter gives an opportunity for learners to spend more time on practicing their skills. The Elmwood Community Resource Centre is “a non-profit organization that is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in Elmwood.” Enhancing language skills is part of this process.Ongoing programs like these have been part of life in Elmwood for some time, but a new development could help to change at least part of the neighbourhood. Hamilton House at 185 Henderson Highway, according to an October 2021 CTV article by Katherine Dow, is scheduled to become the home of Gags Unlimited, with AirBnB space on the upper floors. Winter in Elmwood should be full of new and interesting experiences with so much happening and changing.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Winter came suddenly to Winnipeg this year, with heavy snow after a long, warm fall. The weather has brought an abrupt end to many activities but could turn people’s attention elsewhere. In Elmwood, while winter has changed the character of outdoor activities, new and continuing opportunities can keep people occupied this season.

For many people, cycling is an activity that ends when either the temperatures drop, or ice and snow make it too difficult or dangerous for them. Cyclists in the Elmwood area have two special features to help them — the active transportation bridge between Midwinter Avenue and Point Douglas and the Northeast Pioneers Greenway along the former railway bed between Gateway and Raleigh.

Some people are braver than I am about winter cycling, but I can still walk, at least on packed snow. In summer, the paved trail is lined with trees, bushes, flowers, and prairie grasses. With many of these plants dead or dormant in the winter, the trail will look different for the next few months. 

Monday, Nov. 22, 2021

Photo by Susan Huebert
Now that winter has arrived, people may want to take advantage of opportunities to learn new skills and enjoy outdoor recreation in the snow.

A reminder of the importance of trees

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

A reminder of the importance of trees

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021

When the weather seems more like July than October only the trees show that fall is here. Falling leaves and bare branches remind residents of Elmwood and around Winnipeg, not only of fall, but also of the importance of trees and the necessity of protecting these very important plants. This year has been difficult for everyone, with pandemic restrictions and concerns over people’s health, and it is easy to forget how hard it was on the trees, as well. Many people have heard of the effects of Dutch elm disease and the emerald ash borer beetle which have killed many trees in Winnipeg, but they may be less aware of some of the other threats to Winnipeg’s trees.According to news reports, the oaks of Winnipeg are also in trouble. An extremely hot and dry summer, together with factors such as urban development and an insect called the two-lined chestnut borer have damaged many oaks. Other trees have also been affected by pollution, drought, and more.Trees are much more than just decorative; they help to produce the oxygen we breathe and regulate temperatures. As the Trees Canada website notes, trees help to “reduce the intensity of heat islands and, when combined with other vegetation and green space, contribute to all-around cooler communities.” Without trees, heat could become unbearable in the city.After the excessively hot summer such as the one that much of southern Manitoba experienced this year, any natural method of cooling the city is welcome. One method of increasing tree cover is through the Million Tree Challenge, a campaign to plant one million trees in the city, both to replace the ones that have been lost and to establish new green spaces. Trees Canada is running the program with help from the City of Winnipeg and the Winnipeg Foundation. Trees Canada is a coalition of community groups that hopes to “raise the public profile of trees,” as program director Martine Balcaen explains. Community subject matter experts help to fulfill the organization’s goal of the “right tree, right place, right reason.” Tree replacement in Winnipeg has not kept pace with the losses, potentially leaving areas of the city without a cooling canopy. Elmwood has many mature trees that are at greater risk of dying than younger trees are. Everyone can help save Elmwood’s trees. Information on tree selection and planting is available at www.treeswinnipeg.org/tree-care-101/tree-selection-planting. Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

When the weather seems more like July than October only the trees show that fall is here. Falling leaves and bare branches remind residents of Elmwood and around Winnipeg, not only of fall, but also of the importance of trees and the necessity of protecting these very important plants. 

This year has been difficult for everyone, with pandemic restrictions and concerns over people’s health, and it is easy to forget how hard it was on the trees, as well. Many people have heard of the effects of Dutch elm disease and the emerald ash borer beetle which have killed many trees in Winnipeg, but they may be less aware of some of the other threats to Winnipeg’s trees.

According to news reports, the oaks of Winnipeg are also in trouble. An extremely hot and dry summer, together with factors such as urban development and an insect called the two-lined chestnut borer have damaged many oaks. Other trees have also been affected by pollution, drought, and more.

Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2021

Photo by Susan Huebert
As the leaves turn, our attention turns to cleaning them up, and many of us are reminded of the importance of trees to our urban ecosystem.

Election a chance to consider larger issues

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Preview

Election a chance to consider larger issues

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Tuesday, Sep. 28, 2021

An election is a break in people’s daily routine, a chance to consider issues that might otherwise go unnoticed. In Elmwood, as in the rest of Canada, the federal election was a time for residents to assess the characteristics that make the area unique.The riding of Elmwood-Transcona was first formed in 1976 as the Winnipeg-Birds Hill riding, later renamed Elmwood-Transcona. The electoral district includes a number of neighbourhoods in addition to Elmwood and Transcona, such as Rossmere, Bronx, and Springfield Heights. Transcona contains industrial areas, including New Flyer Industries, the makers of transit buses for cities across North America. Statistics Canada notes that as of the 2016 census, the Elmwood-Transcona area had a population of over 92,700 people. Of this population, 21.5 percent identified as visible minorities, while 13.6 percent identified as Indigenous. When election time comes, finding a candidate who can represent a neighbourhood with diverse demographics such as these can be a challenge.  The 2019 federal election was a tight race in Elmwood-Transcona but was eventually won by Daniel Blaikie of the NDP.Owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, advance voting in the 2021 election was encouraged for anyone who wanted to avoid crowds on Sept. 20. I tool advantage of that opportunity and went on Sept. 13th to the polling station at Chalmers Community Centre. Although a few other people were there at the time, the process went smoothly, and I was in and out quickly.For people voting on Sept. 20, the process was slightly different. Instead of the community centre, the local polling station was at the Grey Street United Church on Sandhurst Avenue. As the Elections Canada website notes, the location met 15 accessibility criteria, and provided interpreters for a variety of different languages. With the short time-frame of this election campaign, voters in the Elmwood-Transcona district may not have been able to learn as much as they might have wished about the candidates in their riding. Still, voters in this riding were able to make their choice, ultimately re-electing Daniel Blaikie. For the next four years (or less), the returning representative of Elmwood-Transcona will have the task of being this area’s voice to the federal government.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

An election is a break in people’s daily routine, a chance to consider issues that might otherwise go unnoticed. In Elmwood, as in the rest of Canada, the federal election was a time for residents to assess the characteristics that make the area unique.

The riding of Elmwood-Transcona was first formed in 1976 as the Winnipeg-Birds Hill riding, later renamed Elmwood-Transcona. The electoral district includes a number of neighbourhoods in addition to Elmwood and Transcona, such as Rossmere, Bronx, and Springfield Heights. Transcona contains industrial areas, including New Flyer Industries, the makers of transit buses for cities across North America. 

Statistics Canada notes that as of the 2016 census, the Elmwood-Transcona area had a population of over 92,700 people. Of this population, 21.5 percent identified as visible minorities, while 13.6 percent identified as Indigenous. When election time comes, finding a candidate who can represent a neighbourhood with diverse demographics such as these can be a challenge.  

Tuesday, Sep. 28, 2021

An election is a break in people’s daily routine, a chance to consider issues that might otherwise go unnoticed. In Elmwood, as in the rest of Canada, the federal election was a time for residents to assess the characteristics that make the area unique.The riding of Elmwood-Transcona was first formed in 1976 as the Winnipeg-Birds Hill riding, later renamed Elmwood-Transcona. The electoral district includes a number of neighbourhoods in addition to Elmwood and Transcona, such as Rossmere, Bronx, and Springfield Heights. Transcona contains industrial areas, including New Flyer Industries, the makers of transit buses for cities across North America. Statistics Canada notes that as of the 2016 census, the Elmwood-Transcona area had a population of over 92,700 people. Of this population, 21.5 percent identified as visible minorities, while 13.6 percent identified as Indigenous. When election time comes, finding a candidate who can represent a neighbourhood with diverse demographics such as these can be a challenge.  The 2019 federal election was a tight race in Elmwood-Transcona but was eventually won by Daniel Blaikie of the NDP.Owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, advance voting in the 2021 election was encouraged for anyone who wanted to avoid crowds on Sept. 20. I tool advantage of that opportunity and went on Sept. 13th to the polling station at Chalmers Community Centre. Although a few other people were there at the time, the process went smoothly, and I was in and out quickly.For people voting on Sept. 20, the process was slightly different. Instead of the community centre, the local polling station was at the Grey Street United Church on Sandhurst Avenue. As the Elections Canada website notes, the location met 15 accessibility criteria, and provided interpreters for a variety of different languages. With the short time-frame of this election campaign, voters in the Elmwood-Transcona district may not have been able to learn as much as they might have wished about the candidates in their riding. Still, voters in this riding were able to make their choice, ultimately re-electing Daniel Blaikie. For the next four years (or less), the returning representative of Elmwood-Transcona will have the task of being this area’s voice to the federal government.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

An election is a break in people’s daily routine, a chance to consider issues that might otherwise go unnoticed. In Elmwood, as in the rest of Canada, the federal election was a time for residents to assess the characteristics that make the area unique.

The riding of Elmwood-Transcona was first formed in 1976 as the Winnipeg-Birds Hill riding, later renamed Elmwood-Transcona. The electoral district includes a number of neighbourhoods in addition to Elmwood and Transcona, such as Rossmere, Bronx, and Springfield Heights. Transcona contains industrial areas, including New Flyer Industries, the makers of transit buses for cities across North America. 

Statistics Canada notes that as of the 2016 census, the Elmwood-Transcona area had a population of over 92,700 people. Of this population, 21.5 percent identified as visible minorities, while 13.6 percent identified as Indigenous. When election time comes, finding a candidate who can represent a neighbourhood with diverse demographics such as these can be a challenge.  

Big changes in store for Elmwood cafe

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Big changes in store for Elmwood cafe

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Wednesday, Sep. 1, 2021

Reinvention can be an exciting process, especially on emerging from the isolation of the pandemic. At Sam’s Place in Elmwood, reopening after the lockdowns has brought new initiatives that carry on the vision for the establishment.Many people know Sam’s Place as a café, used bookstore, and event venue located at 159 Henderson Hwy., where it has operated for many years. With the pandemic closing down many businesses, however, the people running the venue have also had to make many adjustments, with a whole new way of accomplishing the goals of this social enterprise.According to Alison Greenslade, manager of Sam’s Place, the “goal of our social enterprise is to generate revenue to completely fund our own youth program that is run by MCC Manitoba.” The Mennonite Central Committee, or MCC, runs a variety of programs to help with alleviating poverty, peacebuilding, and more.As a social enterprise run through MCC, Sam’s Place is a not-for-profit business that helps to fund a youth engagement program for young people ages 14 to 24. The program teaches them employable skills “with the hopes that they can join the workforce with skills and certifications that they would have otherwise not received,” as Greenslade explains.Participants in the programs have learned valuable skills such as customer service, dishwashing, and food preparation, as well as a variety of other less tangible skills such as punctuality and interview techniques, with assessments throughout the program and certificates marking certain accomplishments. The waiting list for the program is long.With the easing of pandemic restrictions has come a new focus at Sam’s Place. Although live entertainment is difficult due to social distancing requirements, the café is functioning again, with some of the menu’s ingredients supplied through small gardens at the sides of the buildings. There, program participants learn to care for the natural world as they learn gardening skills while growing vegetables and herbs for the café.Used books are still available but have been consolidated at the back of the store, with the front section currently devoted to jewellery and other items left over after the closure of Ten Thousand Villages last year. As these items are sold, Sam’s Place will slowly bring in locally made items to add to the doughnuts, mustard, and other Manitoba products already for sale.This year, Sam’s Place in Elmwood is growing and changing to meet people’s needs in new and exciting ways.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Reinvention can be an exciting process, especially on emerging from the isolation of the pandemic. At Sam’s Place in Elmwood, reopening after the lockdowns has brought new initiatives that carry on the vision for the establishment.

Many people know Sam’s Place as a café, used bookstore, and event venue located at 159 Henderson Hwy., where it has operated for many years. With the pandemic closing down many businesses, however, the people running the venue have also had to make many adjustments, with a whole new way of accomplishing the goals of this social enterprise.

According to Alison Greenslade, manager of Sam’s Place, the “goal of our social enterprise is to generate revenue to completely fund our own youth program that is run by MCC Manitoba.” The Mennonite Central Committee, or MCC, runs a variety of programs to help with alleviating poverty, peacebuilding, and more.

Wednesday, Sep. 1, 2021

Susan Huebert
Sam’s Place, located on Henderson Highway in Elmwood, is going through some changes.

The Louise Bridge: past and present

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

The Louise Bridge: past and present

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Jul. 30, 2021

Bridges join neighbourhoods and cross rivers or industrial areas, but sometimes they connect the modern world with its history. The Louise Bridge connecting Elmwood with Point Douglas is one of these historic sites which help to preserve the past, while still performing a useful task in the present and looking into the future.The Louise Bridge is a very recognizable feature of Elmwood, a steel through truss bridge first built in 1881 for trains to cross the Red River from Stadacona Street in Elmwood to Higgins Avenue in Point Douglas. According to the Winnipeg’s Historic Bridges site by George Siamandas, the bridge was “built in order to attract the CPR through Winnipeg instead of Selkirk” and named for Queen Victoria’s granddaughter, Louise. As the Historic Sites of Manitoba website explains, the original bridge was later adapted for automobile traffic.The people of Winnipeg soon put the new bridge to good use. “For 15 years the Louise bridge carried not only the train, but pedestrians and their horses and wagons,” Siamandas says. As the population grew and the use of cars increased, the need for a bridge adapted to the needs of automobiles became clear. In 1910, the Algoma Steel Bridge Company replaced the old railway bridge with the current structure, allowing for cars and trucks to cross the river. This rebuilding made the Louise Bridge slightly younger than the Redwood Bridge, built in 1908. At just two lanes wide, the Louise Bridge served an important purpose in its time but soon became inadequate for the needs of a growing city. It was superseded in 1959 by the Disraeli Bridge but remained in use.  In 2008, the City of Winnipeg released a plan to expand the bridge to four lanes, but the bridge remains essentially the same as the remade bridge of the early 20th century.Since it was built, the Louise Bridge has undergone renovations, including the most recent one in June 2021, when the bridge was temporarily closed to allow for repairs. For history and architecture enthusiasts, keeping the bridge in its two-lane form helps maintain an important connection with Winnipeg’s history.The Louise Bridge seem quaint and impractical in these days of heavy traffic and busy schedules, but the structure is an important reminder of the city’s past. Even now, the bridge is a fascinating symbol of Winnipeg’s change and growthSusan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood.Bridges join neighbourhoods and cross rivers or industrial areas, but sometimes they connect the modern world with its history. The Louise Bridge connecting Elmwood with Point Douglas is one of these historic sites which help to preserve the past, while still performing a useful task in the present and looking into the future.

The Louise Bridge is a very recognizable feature of Elmwood, a steel through truss bridge first built in 1881 for trains to cross the Red River from Stadacona Street in Elmwood to Higgins Avenue in Point Douglas. 

According to the Winnipeg’s Historic Bridges site by George Siamandas, the bridge was “built in order to attract the CPR through Winnipeg instead of Selkirk” and named for Queen Victoria’s daughter, Louise. As the Historic Sites of Manitoba website explains, the original bridge was later adapted for automobile traffic.

The people of Winnipeg soon put the new bridge to good use. 

Friday, Jul. 30, 2021

Supplied photo
The Louise Bridge is a link to our past.

Bringing a classic story to life on YouTube

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Bringing a classic story to life on YouTube

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Monday, Jul. 5, 2021

In a normal year, putting on concerts, musicals, and all kinds of performances is a standard part of life at the Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute on Riverton Avenue in Elmwood. Although the pandemic put a stop to many of these activities this year, the Grade 9 students, with the help of professionals, filmed a theatrical performance that the participants and their audience will remember for a long time to come.The past school year has been difficult for many students and teachers, with the lockdowns and frequent school closures disrupting studies. At MBCI, concerts and performances are normally an integral part of the academic year, but much of that has had to be cancelled due to pandemic restrictions. Instead, a group of Grade 9 students collaborated on a project to turn a classic children’s fantasy into a half-hour musical production. The result was an online performance of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe — with a Hamilton Twist, based on the book by C.S. Lewis, as part of the Rainbow Stage Manitoba Micro-Musical Project for Students. According to the Rainbow Stage website, the purpose of the project is to “remove barriers to accessing professional training and guidance for students who may not otherwise have access to arts education and programming.” Instead of performing live, the MBCI students produced an online version of the story of Narnia. Putting the musical together involved learning filming skills that were new to the students, including green -creen systems. As the official announcement to families and friends noted, the students were “learning new techniques and technology all along the way - and showing risk-taking and community-building in their learning.”Singing solos while acting in the play would have been a daunting but exciting prospect for some of the participants, even as they learned filming strategies and techniques for communicating a story. With the experience they have gained from this project, some of the students may be able to go on to other performances or technical jobs in the future. The musical is still available to watch at www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7GIKr00o7M, but staff at the school encouraged family and friends to make a special event of the official launch of the project on June 1. Even without the immediacy and personal connections of a live performance, the students had the chance to show the skills they have gained and to demonstrate how much they can achieve in difficult times.    Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

In a normal year, putting on concerts, musicals, and all kinds of performances is a standard part of life at the Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute on Riverton Avenue in Elmwood. 

Although the pandemic put a stop to many of these activities this year, the Grade 9 students, with the help of professionals, filmed a theatrical performance that the participants and their audience will remember for a long time to come.

The past school year has been difficult for many students and teachers, with the lockdowns and frequent school closures disrupting studies. At MBCI, concerts and performances are normally an integral part of the academic year, but much of that has had to be cancelled due to pandemic restrictions. 

Monday, Jul. 5, 2021

Susan Huebert
Even though the pandemic meant they couldn't perform for live audiences, Grade 9 students at Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute managed to put on a presentation of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe - with a Hamilton Twist by filming it so it could be screened on YouTube.

From Elmwood into the world

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Preview

From Elmwood into the world

Susan Huebert 3 minute read Wednesday, Jun. 9, 2021

Coming home can have connotations of warmth, comfort, and familiarity, no matter how far people have travelled or how exciting the journey was.

Former Elmwood resident Menno Friesen’s stories and poems, gathered in the newly published memoir, Heard You Had Some Fun at Goose Brook, Uncle, reflect the ways people can connect with remote cultures and communities while still retaining a sense of home.

Friesen grew up in Winnipeg and lived much of his adult life in Elmwood, but the stories and poems in this book reflect his far-reaching interests. The book, compiled and published two years after the author’s death in 2019, begins with his childhood, progresses through his national and international travels, and ends with a return to Winnipeg and back to his home in Elmwood.  

The book, compiled by Liz Plett, is divided into sections, including friends, outings, people, and more. Photographs in the middle help to illustrate the stories and poems, giving readers a better sense of the contexts that the author discusses. With attention to detail and a sense of humour, Friesen describes some of the influences on his life, drawing comparisons between the life he knew in Canada and the cultures and people he encountered on his travels.

Wednesday, Jun. 9, 2021

Supplied image
Menno Friesen’s memoir, Heard You Had Some Fun at Goose Brook, Uncle, is a reflection of his far-reaching travels and his friends and family in Elmwood.

Reading and more at community resource centre

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Reading and more at community resource centre

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Saturday, May. 8, 2021

Some people might barely remember a time before they could read. Others, however, might struggle long into adulthood to be able to comprehend what they see on the page. For people like these, the GOAL adult literacy and upgrading program at the Elmwood Community Resource Centre is available to help.The need for literacy is everywhere in Canadian society, from filling out job applications to reading instructions or recipes to sitting and relaxing with a good book on quiet afternoons. In many jobs, good reading comprehension is essential. When people are unable to develop the necessary skills in childhood, learning as an adult can help.The GOAL program is geared towards the needs of its students. Adults aged 18 and up can register at any time of the year, as the program has a continuous intake of students. New arrivals receive a quick assessment of their skills and a customized learning plan, designed to help them earn a GED certificate or gain a work promotion.Students can take the initiative to register, but often employers will refer their workers to the program. Various levels of learning are available for both Canadian-born residents and newcomers. Some in-person learning with teachers at the centre is available even during the pandemic, but much of the work is geared for individual study. Resources are available for students learning from home. The centre has partnered with various businesses to provide laptops and other equipment for students who lack access to their own computers, and classes currently take place through Zoom. Each week, staff members drop off homework materials for students, together with a mental wellness kit to help people who are struggling with the isolation and stresses they may be experiencing. The goal of the various programs at the centre, according to executive director Nina Condo, is for people to “get better and be okay in their day-to-day life.” Part of this goal comes through the weekly segment on the timetable when students can learn essential skills such as resume writing, communicating with employers, and more. With counselling services, programs teaching parenting from an Indigenous perspective and more, the Elmwood Community Resource Centre will have much to celebrate at its anniversary this September.As Condo says, the organization has “20 years of being in the community, serving the community.” In the future, the organization will still play an important part in Elmwood.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Some people might barely remember a time before they could read. Others, however, might struggle long into adulthood to be able to comprehend what they see on the page. For people like these, the GOAL adult literacy and upgrading program at the Elmwood Community Resource Centre is available to help.

The need for literacy is everywhere in Canadian society, from filling out job applications to reading instructions or recipes to sitting and relaxing with a good book on quiet afternoons. In many jobs, good reading comprehension is essential. When people are unable to develop the necessary skills in childhood, learning as an adult can help.

The GOAL program is geared towards the needs of its students. Adults aged 18 and up can register at any time of the year, as the program has a continuous intake of students. New arrivals receive a quick assessment of their skills and a customized learning plan, designed to help them earn a GED certificate or gain a work promotion.

Saturday, May. 8, 2021

Photo by Susan Huebert
The Elmwood Community Resource Centre is home to the GOAL adult literacy program.

Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corp. offers warm welcome

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corp. offers warm welcome

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Sunday, Apr. 18, 2021

Spring is a time for renewal, with the chance to build community and to take care of necessary tasks that have been left over the winter. With both new and continuing initiatives this spring, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation at 180 Poplar Ave. is helping the people of Elmwood to connect with each other while making springtime tasks easier.As Liz Plett, one of the staff at the centre says, “There are a lot of reasons to visit 180 Poplar.” This spring will be a busy season at the organization’s location near Henderson Highway. The garage demolition program is an example of an ongoing initiative that has helped to make the neighbourhood more appealing. For residents of the Chalmers area, grants of $1,200 are available for demolishing derelict garages and sheds beyond repair. A demolition crew and bins are available, including free tipping at the dump.Besides being a season for cleaning up, spring is income tax time. Lower-income residents can file their income taxes through the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation without charge, often with same-day service. Participants in this program are asked to bring all of the necessary forms to 180 Poplar, including all T slips, as well as any relevant receipts.Income tax season will soon be over, but community-building can continue all year. This spring, the CNRC is co-operating with the Elmwood Community Resource Centre to distribute “We Are One: A Neighbourhood That Includes All” lawn signs which say “Welcome!” in six languages, including Ojibwe, Tagalog, French, Arabic, Portuguese, and Inuktitut.  “These are a sample of the many languages represented in our neighbourhood. Our goal is to build on a sense of safety, connection and belonging for all,” Plett says.  Anyone who would like a free sign to put on their lawn or in their window is invited to pick one up at 180 Poplar Ave. or 545 Watt St. The next step, if participants wish, is to take a photograph and to post it on social media. By simply doing that, they become eligible to receive a $50 gift card. These signs are only a gesture but they can inspire a new sense of community. Further information is available at 204-333-9867 or 204-669-0750.The past year has been difficult for many people but a bit of encouragement and practical help can make the spring a bit easier. With welcoming lawn signs, grants for homeowners and income tax assistance, the Chalmers Community Renewal Corporation is doing its partSusan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Spring is a time for renewal, with the chance to build community and to take care of necessary tasks that have been left over the winter. 

With both new and continuing initiatives this spring, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation at 180 Poplar Ave. is helping the people of Elmwood to connect with each other while making springtime tasks easier.

As Liz Plett, one of the staff at the centre says, “There are a lot of reasons to visit 180 Poplar.” 

Sunday, Apr. 18, 2021

Spring is a time for renewal, with the chance to build community and to take care of necessary tasks that have been left over the winter. With both new and continuing initiatives this spring, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation at 180 Poplar Ave. is helping the people of Elmwood to connect with each other while making springtime tasks easier.As Liz Plett, one of the staff at the centre says, “There are a lot of reasons to visit 180 Poplar.” This spring will be a busy season at the organization’s location near Henderson Highway. The garage demolition program is an example of an ongoing initiative that has helped to make the neighbourhood more appealing. For residents of the Chalmers area, grants of $1,200 are available for demolishing derelict garages and sheds beyond repair. A demolition crew and bins are available, including free tipping at the dump.Besides being a season for cleaning up, spring is income tax time. Lower-income residents can file their income taxes through the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation without charge, often with same-day service. Participants in this program are asked to bring all of the necessary forms to 180 Poplar, including all T slips, as well as any relevant receipts.Income tax season will soon be over, but community-building can continue all year. This spring, the CNRC is co-operating with the Elmwood Community Resource Centre to distribute “We Are One: A Neighbourhood That Includes All” lawn signs which say “Welcome!” in six languages, including Ojibwe, Tagalog, French, Arabic, Portuguese, and Inuktitut.  “These are a sample of the many languages represented in our neighbourhood. Our goal is to build on a sense of safety, connection and belonging for all,” Plett says.  Anyone who would like a free sign to put on their lawn or in their window is invited to pick one up at 180 Poplar Ave. or 545 Watt St. The next step, if participants wish, is to take a photograph and to post it on social media. By simply doing that, they become eligible to receive a $50 gift card. These signs are only a gesture but they can inspire a new sense of community. Further information is available at 204-333-9867 or 204-669-0750.The past year has been difficult for many people but a bit of encouragement and practical help can make the spring a bit easier. With welcoming lawn signs, grants for homeowners and income tax assistance, the Chalmers Community Renewal Corporation is doing its partSusan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Spring is a time for renewal, with the chance to build community and to take care of necessary tasks that have been left over the winter. 

With both new and continuing initiatives this spring, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation at 180 Poplar Ave. is helping the people of Elmwood to connect with each other while making springtime tasks easier.

As Liz Plett, one of the staff at the centre says, “There are a lot of reasons to visit 180 Poplar.” 

Elmwood Cemetery: History in 38 acres

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Elmwood Cemetery: History in 38 acres

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Thursday, Mar. 18, 2021

A cemetery can be a sad place, full of memories, but it can also be a calm and quiet place where people can enjoy a leisurely walk or an exploration of history. The Elmwood Cemetery - joining Henderson Highway, Hespeler Avenue, and the Red River - combines all three.Elmwood Cemetery is one of Winnipeg’s oldest cemeteries, having been established at the end of 1901 in an area formerly known as McIntosh Garden. The founders attempted to maintain the grounds to “preserve as much as possible the existing large trees on the property,” as the Historic Elmwood Cemetery website notes, with elm, maple, and ash trees dotted throughout the 38 acres. The elms gave the cemetery its name, which in turn inspired the naming of the area around it. The Historic Elmwood website notes that this was “one of the few times a district borrowed its name from the name of a cemetery.”  The main entrance to the cemetery is on Hespeler Avenue, named for William Hespeler, a member of the Manitoba Legislative Assembly in the early 1900s. A pedestrian entrance is on Henderson Highway, half a block before Disraeli Bridge.Elmwood Cemetery’s first burial took place in 1902, and more than 52,000 burials had taken place by 2014. Former Manitoba premier Duff Roblin was buried there in 2010, as well as many of Winnipeg’s less famous residents. The graves of several of my relatives are there, and there are a number of other names that I recognize from my community. When I was in high school and later, I enjoyed wandering through the Elmwood Cemetery, looking for names I recognized.Cemeteries, like anywhere else, occasionally need restoration. As the Historic Elmwood Cemetery website notes, the cemetery has been owned and operated since 1999 by a non-profit organization called The Friends of Elmwood Cemetery. The organization, in turn, has established an endowment fund to help ensure that the cemetery remains in good repair. With all of the dangers of being located on a riverbank, having an organization dedicated to maintaining the site is important. Although eroding riverbanks may not be first on people’s minds when they visit a cemetery, many of them can appreciate the effort to maintain such a beautiful and historic site. Elmwood Cemetery provides a link with Winnipeg’s past and with the community that surrounds it, giving visitors a chance to connect with people across the city and beyond.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

A cemetery can be a sad place, full of memories, but it can also be a calm and quiet place where people can enjoy a leisurely walk or an exploration of history. The Elmwood Cemetery - joining Henderson Highway, Hespeler Avenue, and the Red River - combines all three.

Elmwood Cemetery is one of Winnipeg’s oldest cemeteries, having been established at the end of 1901 in an area formerly known as McIntosh Garden. The founders attempted to maintain the grounds to “preserve as much as possible the existing large trees on the property,” as the Historic Elmwood Cemetery website notes, with elm, maple, and ash trees dotted throughout the 38 acres. 

The elms gave the cemetery its name, which in turn inspired the naming of the area around it. The Historic Elmwood website notes that this was “one of the few times a district borrowed its name from the name of a cemetery.”  

Thursday, Mar. 18, 2021

Photo by Susan Huebert
Elmwood Cemetery was established in 1901.

Grocery delivery and taxis for locals

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Preview

Grocery delivery and taxis for locals

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Friday, Feb. 12, 2021

Everyone in a community needs support at times, whether with transportation, finding housing or buying groceries.For people in the Elmwood area, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation is a useful source of information and assistance. The organization recently added two new programs, the BAG 2.0 free grocery delivery program for Elmwood and Taxi Tides for Chalmers residents, to initiatives already in place.Long-term residents of Elmwood may already know about some of the programs the CNRC runs through its office at 180 Poplar Ave. BAG 2.0 is related to but separate from the Better Access to Groceries program that gives participants access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Run in collaboration with Tasse’s Balkan Foods, BAG 2.0 offers set packages of staple foods to participants that will be delivered free of charge. To arrange for pickup of fresh produce with the BAG program, people can register with Jacquie Pontedeira. Charity Strange co-ordinates the new BAG 2.0 free delivery of staple items. Both co-oordinators can be contacted at 204-669-0750. For executive director Leilani Esteban Villarba, it is important that the people working at the CNRC are “familiar with what the issues are on the ground.” Food security is a problem in an area with only one mid-sized grocery store and several convenience stores nearby.Affordable and accessible food is a major issue for many people in neighbourhoods such as Chalmers, but transportation is another. Whether they need to go for a doctor’s appointment, a job interview, or other trip, people who cannot afford vehicles often struggle to get where they need to go. The Taxi Rides for Chalmers residents program helps meet that need. According to Liz Plett, in charge of the program, “taking down barriers is what we’re about.” Through this program, qualifying Chalmers residents can receive taxi fare, up to $20 each way, for essential rides on weekdays. Whenever a need comes up in the community, the people at the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation are ready to find a way to help. Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Everyone in a community needs support at times, whether with transportation, finding housing or buying groceries.

For people in the Elmwood area, the Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation is a useful source of information and assistance. The organization recently added two new programs, the BAG 2.0 free grocery delivery program for Elmwood and Taxi Tides for Chalmers residents, to initiatives already in place.

Long-term residents of Elmwood may already know about some of the programs the CNRC runs through its office at 180 Poplar Ave. BAG 2.0 is related to but separate from the Better Access to Groceries program that gives participants access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Run in collaboration with Tasse’s Balkan Foods, BAG 2.0 offers set packages of staple foods to participants that will be delivered free of charge. 

Friday, Feb. 12, 2021

Supplied photo
Chalmers Neighbourhood Renewal Corporation staff (from left) Jacquie Pontedeira (BAG co-ordinator), Leilani Esteban Villarba (executive eirector), Liz Plett (Action Plan/housing co-ordinator) and Charity Strange (BAG 2.0 co-ordinator).

It’s never too late for learning

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Preview

It’s never too late for learning

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Friday, Jan. 15, 2021

When schools closed down last spring, many people wondered how to get young students back on track to learn what they needed to know for their futures. Less was said about older learners. Still, as children return to school after their extended winter break, adult learners at schools like the Horizon Learning Centre at 431 Thames Ave. will also return to their studies, trying to make up for lost time.Disruption has become a normal part of everyday life for most Canadians these days. For many people, however, disruption started much earlier. According to Statistics Canada, eight per cent of men and five per cent of women aged 25 to 34 had not graduated from high school in 2016. Although these numbers were considerably lower than they were in 1990 (22 and 18 per cent respectively), they are still high for a country such as ours.High schools for adults can be part of the solution. Horizons Learning Centre describes itself as “a success oriented adult learning centre delivering accredited high school education to mature students.” The goal is for students to achieve a Grade 12 mature student diploma that can help them find better jobs and possibly go on to further education. English language arts, mathematics, biology and chemistry are some of the courses offered.For adult learners who may have children or aging parents to care for, jobs to work at, and many other responsibilities, convenience and flexibility are important. The location on Thames Avenue near Watt Street is one of three Horizons locations, with another in the Portage Place skywalk and a third at Crossways on Furby Street. Classes are free, although an annual registration fee is required. The goal, as the website states, is to provide “a climate that is welcoming and conducive to learning.” This year has been challenging for students of all ages, with cancellations and restrictions due to the pandemic, together with constant uncertainty about the future.Despite that, plans are underway for a new term at Horizon, with classes starting on Feb. 1. Although many of the classes will be held during the day, some are available in the evenings for those unavailable earlier, or who prefer the evening hours for learning.  Whether to keep busy or to prepare for the future, finishing high school is a good choice for adult students.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

When schools closed down last spring, many people wondered how to get young students back on track to learn what they needed to know for their futures. Less was said about older learners. 

Still, as children return to school after their extended winter break, adult learners at schools like the Horizon Learning Centre at 431 Thames Ave. will also return to their studies, trying to make up for lost time.

Disruption has become a normal part of everyday life for most Canadians these days. For many people, however, disruption started much earlier. According to Statistics Canada, eight per cent of men and five per cent of women aged 25 to 34 had not graduated from high school in 2016. Although these numbers were considerably lower than they were in 1990 (22 and 18 per cent respectively), they are still high for a country such as ours.

Friday, Jan. 15, 2021

Photo by Susan Huebert
The Horizon Learning Centre at 431 Thames Ave. is one of three Horizon centres that will begin a new term on Feb. 1.

Building community at MBCI

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Building community at MBCI

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Dec. 18, 2020

When a school’s motto is “Life well learned,” people know that the teaching is about more than algebra, the periodic table, or poetry. At Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute in Elmwood, the ideals behind this motto have helped to shape the school’s community-building initiatives throughout this difficult year.Alumni, students, and staff had been looking forward to 2020 as the celebration of MBCI’s 75th anniversary, with the prospect of all kinds of activities to mark the years since the school’s founding in 1945. Yet, like so many other events, the celebrations had to be delayed as the novel coronavirus pandemic swept through Canada. Instead, students and staff had to find ways to salvage an interrupted and often traumatic year. One of those ways was through community-building. The idea of community has always been important at MBCI, as it was in my time as a student there. As the MBCI website states, the pandemic has not changed the school’s vision for education: “Equipping students to learn, love, and engage with the world.” From encouraging alumni and donors to help build a commemorative walkway to initiating a project to choose class representatives, the school has been reaching out to the larger community of supporters.Within the school, initiatives have also been directed at using the concept of community to help the learning process. Broadcasting a virtual band concert to highlight the students’ musical skills, posting Facebook videos to encourage and thank teachers, and displaying the school’s theme Bible verse for the year are some of the ways that people have been building community.  Meanwhile, a Grade 10 presentation of some of the ideas from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein was one of the highlights of collaboration between students this year.Students are not the only ones negotiating new ways of managing this year’s challenges. For school principal Andrea Neufeld, the goal for everyone working at MBCI is “to be a staff who creates a community of care for our students” so that “we then make it possible for learning and flourishing to happen.”Project-based learning is part of the process, and teachers have designed initiatives that build community, such as constructing sheds for Habitat for Humanity and designing and making a nativity set for Donwood Manor personal-care home last year.Even now, the staff and students at MBCI are still working to build a community that helps to make the most of what they have.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

When a school’s motto is “Life well learned,” people know that the teaching is about more than algebra, the periodic table, or poetry. At Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute in Elmwood, the ideals behind this motto have helped to shape the school’s community-building initiatives throughout this difficult year.

Alumni, students, and staff had been looking forward to 2020 as the celebration of MBCI’s 75th anniversary, with the prospect of all kinds of activities to mark the years since the school’s founding in 1945. Yet, like so many other events, the celebrations had to be delayed as the novel coronavirus pandemic swept through Canada. Instead, students and staff had to find ways to salvage an interrupted and often traumatic year. 

One of those ways was through community-building. The idea of community has always been important at MBCI, as it was in my time as a student there. As the MBCI website states, the pandemic has not changed the school’s vision for education: “Equipping students to learn, love, and engage with the world.” From encouraging alumni and donors to help build a commemorative walkway to initiating a project to choose class representatives, the school has been reaching out to the larger community of supporters.

Friday, Dec. 18, 2020

Photo by Susan Huebert
Although the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted many planned festivities, staff and students have still managed to celebrate the 75th year of Mennonite Brethren Collegiate Institute in positive ways.

Stately home has had many lives

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Stately home has had many lives

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Nov. 20, 2020

Over many years, buildings can take on many different characteristics while still remaining essentially the same. Hamilton House at 183 Henderson Hwy. is a classical revivalist-style house that has seen many changes over more than 100 years, transforming from a family home where the initial owners conducted psychic experiments into to a not-for-profit art and gift shop and more.  Hamilton House is named for the family that originally lived in it when the road was called Kelvin Street, according to the Manitoba Historical Society. According to Heritage Winnipeg, Dr. Thomas Glendenning Hamilton moved there in 1910 with his wife and daughter. The family lived upstairs, while the main floor became offices and the basement became the surgery. Later, the family held experiments in psychic phenomena, even hosting Sir Arthur Conan Doyle on at least one occasion.Since the family sold the house, it has been home to a variety of businesses and organizations. One of the most interesting was the Olive Branch, a gift and art shop that mirrored Ten Thousand Villages in selling crafts and artwork coming from artisans in West Bank, Kenya, and other parts of the world. The Centre for Mennonite Brethren Studies says the project generated $100,000 in sales in its first year. In 1988, the Olive Branch joined in a project to raise money for Habitat for Humanity to build homes for low-income Winnipeggers. The Mennonite Central Committee soon took over the project and, although the Olive Branch eventually closed, Hamilton House continued to be a place that people could appreciate and enjoy.Throughout its various lives, the basic appearance of Hamilton House has remained the same as a building constructed in the Classical Revival style. This style was popular in the first three decades of the 20th century, combining elements such as columns and Greek or Roman embellishments. Another example of this style of architecture is the Manitoba Club at 194 Broadway Avenue.Even to the untrained eye, Hamilton House bears a resemblance to other buildings of its architectural heritage, with its narrow columns and stately appearance. In contrast to many of the buildings surrounding it, Hamilton House is pale grey, which helps to highlight the simple elegance of the structure. Despite being on a busy street like Henderson Highway, Hamilton House stands as a tribute to a past time, when life was slower and quieter.    Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Over many years, buildings can take on many different characteristics while still remaining essentially the same. 

Hamilton House at 183 Henderson Hwy. is a classical revivalist-style house that has seen many changes over more than 100 years, transforming from a family home where the initial owners conducted psychic experiments into to a not-for-profit art and gift shop and more.  

Hamilton House is named for the family that originally lived in it when the road was called Kelvin Street, according to the Manitoba Historical Society. According to Heritage Winnipeg, Dr. Thomas Glendenning Hamilton moved there in 1910 with his wife and daughter. The family lived upstairs, while the main floor became offices and the basement became the surgery. Later, the family held experiments in psychic phenomena, even hosting Sir Arthur Conan Doyle on at least one occasion.

Friday, Nov. 20, 2020

Photo by Susan Huebert
Hamilton House on Henderson Highway was initially owned by Dr. Thomas Glendenning Hamilton and his family.

Active transportation bridge a real blessing

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Preview

Active transportation bridge a real blessing

Susan Huebert 4 minute read Friday, Oct. 23, 2020

 

Just over 13 months ago, the active transportation bridge linking Elmwood with Point Douglas was opened. Now in 2020, the bridge remains a useful connection between two neighbourhoods, giving cyclists and pedestrians options as they travel across the city.Before the bridge was constructed, getting from one side of the Red River to another on foot or by bicycle was somewhat complicated, often involving a long detour to the Louise or Redwood Bridges. Even for drivers, the trip over the bridge was somewhat risky, as evidenced by the number of times someone failed to navigate the entry onto Henderson Highway successfully and crashed into a house just beyond the curve.While the new Disraeli Bridge helped to correct some of the problems that caused accidents such as these, the active transportation bridge gave people another option for crossing the river. Access from the Elmwood side is on Midwinter Avenue, one block south of Talbot Avenue. On the Point Douglas side, the bridge connects with Rover Avenue, parallel to Higgins Avenue. As the City of Winnipeg website explains, the active transportation bridge incorporates several of the supporting piers from the old bridge. At five metres wide, the bridge is sufficiently large to allow for several cyclists and pedestrians to pass each other without crowding each other. The bridge is high enough to allow boats to pass by on the river without making the slope excessively steep for cyclists.  Although some features that were originally planned for the bridge, such as benches, failed to materialize, many interesting features were included in the design. On one side of the pathway, patterns of holes punched into steel structures help to tell the stories of the neighbourhoods the bridge connects. Several lookout areas give people the chance to stop for a few minutes out of the way of traffic to admire the river or to watch birds flying or swimming by.While the current enthusiasm for walking and cycling might eventually diminish, structures like the active transportation bridge between Elmwood and Point Douglas are good for encouraging Winnipeggers to get out into the fresh air. With the additional opportunity to learn about the neighbourhood, the bridge serves a useful purpose in the city.Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood.  

In 2013, the active transportation bridge linking Elmwood with Point Douglas was opened. Now in 2020, the bridge remains a useful connection between two neighbourhoods, giving cyclists and pedestrians options as they travel across the city.

Before the bridge was constructed, getting from one side of the Red River to another on foot or by bicycle was somewhat complicated, often involving a long detour to the Louise or Redwood Bridges. Even for drivers, the trip over the bridge was somewhat risky, as evidenced by the number of times someone failed to navigate the entry onto Henderson Highway successfully and crashed into a house just beyond the curve.

Friday, Oct. 23, 2020

Photo by Susan Huebert
The active transportation bridge linking Elmwood and Point Douglas was built at a lower height than the motor vehicle bridge, reducing the steepness of the grade.

Northeast Greenway – from trains to pathway

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Northeast Greenway – from trains to pathway

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Sep. 25, 2020

Early on a cool Saturday morning, not long after sunrise, the Northeast Pioneers Greenway already had a sprinkling of walkers, joggers, and cyclists. Young children with their parents, teenagers out for a walk together, or seniors out getting exercise all seemed to be enjoying the chance to get fresh air and exercise on the repurposed railway bed. At one time, the Northeast Pioneers Greenway was a very different place. The long stretch of land between Gateway and Raleigh streets was once a Canadian Pacific Railway line running north to south through North and East Kildonan, Elmwood, and beyond.In 2007, the train tracks were taken out and a path substituted for them, with trees, flowers, and prairie grasses on either side. As the Winnipeg Trails website notes, the path is now a “popular active transportation corridor, which has been embraced by the community.”  The current greenway bears little resemblance to its former state as a railway. Instead of metal rails, gravel, concrete, and dust, the area is a green belt in the neighbourhood, with trees, bushes, grasses, and flowers. Interpretive signs along the way pay tribute to the pioneers who settled in the area and point out the many sights along the way. The pathway itself is paved but there is abundant greenery on either side and an occasional park bench where people can sit down and enjoy the sights and sounds of nature in the middle of the city.Milkweed, needlegrass, and asters are some of the plants along the way, while animals include birds and squirrels. In addition, along the 5.5 kilometres of the route are points of access to Bunn’s Creek Trail, the Trans Canada Trail, and more. For anyone needing a break, restaurants and businesses are also easily accessible. Currently, the Northeast Pioneers Greenway runs from McIvor Avenue to a point just beyond Talbot Avenue but the plan is to expand it even farther, to Archibald Street. As the City of Winnipeg website notes, the idea is to “close a gap in the bicycle network that will connect northeast Winnipeg to the downtown area.” Projects like this one help to reclaim areas that might otherwise fall into decay. Several similar projects in Winnipeg have helped to bring wildlife and many kinds of plants into the city. For cyclists and pedestrians wanting to enjoy nature, the greenway is a good place to go. Susan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

Early on a cool Saturday morning, not long after sunrise, the Northeast Pioneers Greenway already had a sprinkling of walkers, joggers, and cyclists. Young children with their parents, teenagers out for a walk together, or seniors out getting exercise all seemed to be enjoying the chance to get fresh air and exercise on the repurposed railway bed. 

At one time, the Northeast Pioneers Greenway was a very different place. The long stretch of land between Gateway and Raleigh streets was once a Canadian Pacific Railway line running north to south through North and East Kildonan, Elmwood, and beyond.

In 2007, the train tracks were taken out and a path substituted for them, with trees, flowers, and prairie grasses on either side. As the Winnipeg Trails website notes, the path is now a “popular active transportation corridor, which has been embraced by the community.”  

Friday, Sep. 25, 2020

Photo by Susan Huebert
The Northeast Pioneers Greenway is situated on a repurposed Canadian Pacific Railroad line.

Learning about my new neighbourhood

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Preview

Learning about my new neighbourhood

Susan Huebert 5 minute read Friday, Sep. 11, 2020

I recently went searching for a church with a connection to a prolific architect from Winnipeg’s history. It was supposed to be the subject of my first Herald article on moving to Elmwood. An empty field and a rock are all that remain of an early 20th century church that once stood at 220 Helmsdale Ave. Still, even that grassy space tells a story, and perhaps the rock is a reminder, not just of the structure that once stood there, but of the theological and historical significance of rocks.Although not strictly speaking in my new neighbourhood, the St. Stephen’s Anglican Church on Helmsdale Avenue seemed like a good place to begin an exploration of the architectural history of the area. A knowledgeable friend, Gail Perry, explained to me that the church’s main architect was Henry Rupert Linnell, a draftsman and architect associated with one of Winnipeg’s most prolific early twentieth century architects, John D. Atchison.The church building on Helmsdale came from those early years of expansion, when Winnipeg still growing rapidly as the gateway to the west. As Gail explained, St. Stephen’s Anglican Church was built in 1913 with a brick base and a mainly stucco exterior. The Winnipeg Architecture website notes that the Parish of St. Stephen’s itself was established only a year earlier, in 1912, as a mission project of St. John’s Cathedral. Services started in the municipal hall and at Polson School, later moving to the newly constructed building on Helmsdale and finally the latest move to a modern building on Kimberley Avenue, not far away. Henry Rupert Linnell was the architect most involved in designing the Helmsdale church. He was also known for designing a large house on Middle Gate in the Armstrong’s Point area, as well as for his early death. The Manitoba Historical Society’s website explains that Linnell enlisted in the army in 1915 and went overseas, where he was killed in August of 1918. Before his enlistment, however, he was able to help architects such as Atchison design many of the early buildings that make Winnipeg’s older areas so interesting.Atchison’s buildings are still scattered throughout Winnipeg, but his Devon Court Apartments in my old neighbourhood of West Broadway were demolished long before I lived there. Still, some of the buildings in the area are reminiscent of the same style. Moving to Elmwood is a good chance to discover its own architectural gems. I look forward to my explorationsSusan Huebert is a community correspondent for Elmwood. 

I recently went searching for a church with a connection to a prolific architect from Winnipeg’s history. It was supposed to be the subject of my first Herald article on moving to Elmwood. 

An empty field and a rock are all that remain of an early 20th century church that once stood at 220 Helmsdale Ave. Still, even that grassy space tells a story, and perhaps the rock is a reminder, not just of the structure that once stood there, but of the theological and historical significance of rocks.

Although not strictly speaking in my new neighbourhood, the St. Stephen’s Anglican Church on Helmsdale Avenue seemed like a good place to begin an exploration of the architectural history of the area. A knowledgeable friend, Gail Perry, explained to me that the church’s main architect was Henry Rupert Linnell, a draftsman and architect associated with one of Winnipeg’s most prolific early twentieth century architects, John D. Atchison.

Friday, Sep. 11, 2020

Photo by Susan Huebert
An empty lot and a rock are all that remain of the Helmsdale Avenue church building that was home to St. Stephen’s Anglican Church.