Suzanne Hunter

Suzanne Hunter

Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.

Recent articles of Suzanne Hunter

Out and about and exploring Transcona

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Out and about and exploring Transcona

Suzanne Hunter 2 minute read Wednesday, Apr. 27, 2022

My nine-year-old grandson often has a sleepover on the weekend, and one of our favourite things to do is explore new places. With the pandemic and cold winter, we hadn’t been out much, but a few weeks ago I finally felt comfortable venturing out.

I’m not a big user of social media, but I must admit Facebook seems to be my go-to to find out what concerts are coming up and what’s going on in my neighbourhood. On the Transcona and Proud of It Facebook page I’d often seen posts about the L’Arche Tova Café in the heart of Transcona on Regent Avenue West. I finally got a chance to check it out. My grandson, a picky eater, ordered the bacon and eggs and said it was the best breakfast he ever had. He couldn’t get over how good the toast was – this from the boy who never eats toast at my house. The waitress told us they make their own bread. Next time I go there I’ll purchase a loaf to take home. It was also a good opportunity to tell him about how the café supports the community of people with developmental challenges.

After breakfast, we went to another place I’d heard about on Facebook, Aunt Monica’s Attic, just a couple doors down from the café. We both were like kids in a candy store. This place has so many cool, unique things I didn’t know where to look first. Owner Monica Smith, a friendly lady, explained to us she purchases toys and craft items that don’t require batteries – only imagination. The puzzle and craft selections were really good and prices reasonable. It took my grandson a while to narrow the selection of toys he liked to those that I’d let him buy.

We had one last stop that morning, the Spring Time Craft and Vendor sale held in the Rizzuto Hall at the Transcona East End Community Centre. There were quite a few vendors, ranging from crafters to sellers of Tupperware and other products. It was a good place to support local artisans and buy gifts.

Wednesday, Apr. 27, 2022

Artist Jola Liebzeit, with her paintings and hand-sewn fabric bags, and John Royce Izzard with his originally designed leather belts, wallets and purses made of the softest leather, were vendors at the Spring Time Craft and Vendor sale at Transcona East End Community Centre.

When six shovels are better than one

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When six shovels are better than one

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Sunday, Jan. 30, 2022

 

I’m usually happy when it’s quitting time, but I was dreading the ride home on this particular day. We’d had more snow, and now it was blowing. I knew my usual half-hour commute would be double that, at least.Not even one block from work, I saw a car spinning its tires in a driveway, stuck. I felt bad for the lady, but then a man in a truck pulled over to help. He didn’t have to, as she was not blocking any traffic and it perked up my mood to see somebody take time to help someone else.Redwood Avenue was slowed to a crawl in spots, but this gave me the opportunity to watch the firefighters at the Redwood fire station shovel their driveway. This normally wouldn’t be noteworthy, but all six of them lined up tight together then shovelled as one unit. I’m sure it was all in fun, and it gave me a chuckle.Further along, I turned from Redwood onto Henderson Highway and was greeted by the most beautiful sun dog. By now I was starting to feel less frustrated and more relaxed.If you don’t have a companion to talk to, it’s important to have good music to help pass the time. I’m a station flipper, always seeking out the best tune for my mood. The selection that day ranged from the peppy, That’s What I Want by Lil Nas X, to Chris Isaak’s more soulful Wicked Game. I admit I’m one of those people you see singing unabashedly to themselves in the car.A slow drive also allows for contemplation. I spent some time coming up with New Year’s resolutions and deciding what to have for dinner. Then my thoughts wandered to the sill, as I passed Uncle Weiner’s Wholesale store on Nairn Avenue. I wondered why the mascot on their sign is a pickle when a hotdog seems more suitable.Sometimes reading the business signs along the way can alert you to sales or tempt you to get takeout for dinner, but the OK Tire Auto Service sign provided some corny comic relief: “When one door closes, another one opens.  Other than that, it’s a pretty good car”. Ha!Finally, I pulled up to my house to see one of my awesome neighbours had cleared my driveway with their snow blower.  It was a great end to my trek home.Overall, the drive wasn’t so bad. I could have grumbled about having to scrape frost off the windows, or the lack of sand at some intersections but on that day I chose to focus on the more pleasant aspects, which improved my mood.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

I’m usually happy when it’s quitting time, but I was dreading the ride home on this particular day. We’d had more snow, and now it was blowing. I knew my usual half-hour commute would be double that, at least.

Not even one block from work, I saw a car spinning its tires in a driveway, stuck. I felt bad for the lady, but then a man in a truck pulled over to help. He didn’t have to, as she was not blocking any traffic and it perked up my mood to see somebody take time to help someone else.

Sunday, Jan. 30, 2022

Mikaela MacKenzie / Winnipeg Fre
Our winter commutes may be slower but these drives can lift your spirits, too.

My journey with ulcerative colitis

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My journey with ulcerative colitis

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021

November is Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness month so I thought I’d share my journey with ulcerative colitis. My illness can be embarrassing to talk about. Perhaps it’s because it involves the words colon and rectum. At least, that’s how I felt until somebody pointed out if it was any other disease, like arthritis or diabetes, I wouldn’t feel that way.  Canada has one of the highest rates of inflammatory bowel disease in the world.  Ulcerative colitis causes the body to attack healthy tissue resulting in inflammation and pain in the inner lining of the large colon and rectum. It hinders the ability to digest food, absorb nutrition and eliminate waste in a healthy manner. There can be periods of remission between flare-ups but there is no cure.For me it started with pain in my lower left abdomen. Eventually, I experienced bleeding and an urgent and frequent need for a washroom due to diarrhea — between five and 10 times per day. My doctor set me up with a gastroenterologist who ordered a colonoscopy. To prepare, you have to take medication that stimulates the muscles in the colon to clear out your digestive tract. I had to drink one full cup of the first medication every 15 minutes for two hours. I just couldn’t do it, since it tasted vile and I was nauseous. I cancelled the procedure. Then I tried Picosalax — also not great tasting, but only two drinks — one the day before and one the next morning, with copious amounts of water.  For the procedure you’re given a sedative.  I fell asleep and missed the whole thing  If you do stay awake you can watch the results on the computer screen. Right after the procedure my doctor informed me I had ulcerative colitis.  He prescribed an anti-inflammatory in pill format called Pentasa. For the next 10 months all my symptoms subsided. But, as happens with colitis, I had another flare-up.  He then prescribed a six-week daily dose of Betnesol, a corticosteroid retention enema.  It works wonders — but you can’t take it for too long ,as it’s a strong medication.The most annoying side effect for me is the excessive sweating particularly my neck and head and having to have a fan blowing at me when I’m at work. Just over two years since my diagnosis I’m on my fourth course of this steroid to reduce the inflammation. Once it’s back to a good level, the doctor is putting me on a stronger maintenance medication.  When I have a flare-up, the medications help but there are days I need to be in close proximity to a washroom so you have to carefully plan where the nearest facilities are.  This is a huge concern for many folks with this disease, so much so, there is a program called  the GoHere Washroom Access Program which lists businesses allowing washroom access for this special circumstance.If you have any symptoms, see your doctor and don’t wait like I did. To learn more, try the website crohnsandcolitis.ca.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

November is Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness month so I thought I’d share my journey with ulcerative colitis. My illness can be embarrassing to talk about. Perhaps it’s because it involves the words colon and rectum. At least, that’s how I felt until somebody pointed out if it was any other disease, like arthritis or diabetes, I wouldn’t feel that way.  

Canada has one of the highest rates of inflammatory bowel disease in the world.  Ulcerative colitis causes the body to attack healthy tissue resulting in inflammation and pain in the inner lining of the large colon and rectum. It hinders the ability to digest food, absorb nutrition and eliminate waste in a healthy manner. There can be periods of remission between flare-ups but there is no cure.

For me it started with pain in my lower left abdomen. Eventually, I experienced bleeding and an urgent and frequent need for a washroom due to diarrhea — between five and 10 times per day. 

Tuesday, Nov. 9, 2021

Dreamstime.com
November is Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Month, and correspondent Suzanne Hunter provides insight by describing her experience with ulcerative colitis.

Ah, the good old days of childhood

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Ah, the good old days of childhood

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Monday, Aug. 16, 2021

Al Buhler recently posted a list of things he enjoyed while growing up in Winnipeg on the Transcona, and Proud of It Facebook page. It evoked fond memories, so I put together my own list about growing up in Transcona:A visit to Max Katz Dry Goods store was always a treat. Mr. Katz was a kind soul. I still have the treasured cloth doll I got there.  Growing up on Melrose Avenue I’d take our wooden grey wagon and go for rides around the block to Pandora Avenue while sitting with one leg in the wagon and the other leg out to push it along. Or, with a friend, we’d take turns pushing and steering.In first grade at Central School, we’d get our chocolate milk then we’d watch Mr. Dressup and sometimes The Friendly Giant.When my siblings and I were lucky we’d get a couple of dimes to buy candy at the Fruit Home. Our favourites were Dubble Bubble gum with the comic, chocolate bars like Treasures or Bar Six, Popeye candy sticks (the ones with the red end and the wrapper with the powder inside that poofed out like smoke when you blew into it) and, of course, Cracker Jack with the prize inside!Our toys were simpler, but we enjoyed them all. My Nana knitted beautiful clothes for our Barbies and dolls. We’d play Barbies with my brother’s Big Jim Sports Camper because it came with cool stuff. I really enjoyed playing with paper cut-out dolls with the interchangeable paper outfits. We also played for hours with a rubber ball. I still recall this ditty: “Bouncy bouncy bally, I broke my sister’s dolly, she gave me a slap, I paid her back, bouncy bouncy bally!”A simple skipping rope and a range of games, such as double Dutch, also provided hours of fun.The Hi Neighbour Festival and parade was always fun. I liked the pony rides, albeit I’m not sure how much fun the pony had going round and round in a circle.In the ’70s we moved to Southside. There was a bush nearby where we’d build forts.  At the community centre we’d often go skating or spend a Saturday night watching old Disney movies. It was also the place I’d go to bingo games with my Nana. To get to the north side of Transcona we’d cross multiple train tracks and cut through the main thoroughfare of the CN Shops. We were supposed to walk our bikes, but we’d ride them until the security guard was in view. We’d put nickels on the tracks and wait for the train to go by, then collect our flattened treasures. I can understand why pedestrian traffic is no longer allowed in the shops!I hope you enjoy reminiscing with your own childhood memories. It’s something fun to share with our grandchildren and younger Transcona residents.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

Al Buhler recently posted a list of things he enjoyed while growing up in Winnipeg on the Transcona, and Proud of It Facebook page. 

It evoked fond memories, so I put together my own list about growing up in Transcona:

A visit to Max Katz Dry Goods store was always a treat. Mr. Katz was a kind soul. I still have the treasured cloth doll I got there.  

Monday, Aug. 16, 2021

Photo by Suzanne Hunter
Correspondent Suzanne Hunter took this photo of things that remind her of her childhood. On the right is the cloth doll she got at the Max Katz Dry Goods store.

The joy of backyard bird-watching

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

The joy of backyard bird-watching

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Monday, May. 31, 2021

 

Spring is finally here and we are well on our way to summer. As I write this, I am sitting next to my lilac bush, taking advantage of its perfume before it all too soon loses its blossoms.This time of year I enjoy watching and listening to the variety of birds that visit my yard. Some are year-round visitors; some spend a few weeks and others are just passing by on their way further north. Over the years I’ve probably seen over 40 different bird species.  Black-capped chickadees are year-round feeders. If there is no food in the feeder and you are patient, stretch out your arm with a handful of black oil sunflower seeds and these birds will eat right out of your hand.  Other year-round visitors include the house sparrow, purple finch, downy woodpecker and a few others.In the spring when I hear a “thunk” on the living room window I know the dark-eyed juncos are back for a few weeks. They hit the windows more frequently than any other bird, but are pretty resilient, as they just fly off. My favourite songbirds usually arrive in May - the Savannah sparrow, the white-throated sparrow and American goldfinch.  Others drop by just to spend a day, such as the pretty rose-breasted grosbeak, yellow-rumped warbler, and American redstart.Having different feeders and seed will attract different birds. I have one for suet cakes (with attract nuthatches and woodpeckers); a tubular feeder with Niger seed - a favorite of finches; one feeder with a mix of cracked corn and millet (sparrows, red winged blackbirds); and two feeders with black oil sunflower seeds which all birds like, especially the chickadees.  Seeds that fall onto the ground also attract different birds - mourning doves, Harris’s sparrows, juncos, as well as a pair of mallard ducks who come daily for their feed. Small animals such as rabbits and squirrels also enjoy the fallen food. Although I’ve only occasionally seen their prints in the winter, mice can also be attracted to the fallen seed so you may want to consider that when placing your feeders.There are some birds I’d prefer not to have around, like the grackles, who tend to scare away other birds and hog the food. Unfortunately, having so many birds gets the attention of the merlin and a few have been taken by this small falcon. Oh well, that’s nature.  If you’ve considered setting up something to attract birds, most department stores will have everything you need. If you want to go all out, specialty stores like Wild Birds Unlimited at 11 Reenders Dr. will have anything you want, such as fancy water features for your bird bath and a wide assortment of bird feeders. Their staff can answer all your birding questions. To identify birds there are apps and plenty of information online, but I prefer to look them up in The Audubon Society’s Master Guide to Birding books.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Spring is finally here and we are well on our way to summer. As I write this, I am sitting next to my lilac bush, taking advantage of its perfume before it all too soon loses its blossoms.

This time of year I enjoy watching and listening to the variety of birds that visit my yard. Some are year-round visitors; some spend a few weeks and others are just passing by on their way further north. Over the years I’ve probably seen over 40 different bird species.  

Monday, May. 31, 2021

Photo by Suzanne Hunter
A black-capped chickadee cracks open a black-oil sunflower seed.

Consider joining the Transcona Garden Club

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Consider joining the Transcona Garden Club

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Saturday, Apr. 17, 2021

 

Spring is here and it’s time to start thinking about planting your flower and vegetable gardens. I’m looking forward to joining the Transcona Garden Club for some helpful gardening tips, once COVID restrictions are over. For now, I’ll keep in touch through its Facebook page.The Transcona Garden Club has been around for over 50 years and is affiliated with the Manitoba Horticultural Association.  Members used to meet the third Wednesday of the month (except in December and January) at the Transcona Retired Citizens Centre but, like all social gatherings, these meetings have been cancelled since COVID-19 restrictions came into effect.Part of club’s mission statement is:  “To promote interest in horticulture and instill a love of gardening within the community, and maintain an awareness of Transcona as a ‘Park City.’”The club is a great way to meet neighbours and friends who share a common interest and it s new members of all ages. Whether you’re planning your first garden or have specific questions about your existing set-up, the group is a great source of information and folks will be happy to answer your questions (via their Facebook page, for now).At monthly meetings, members discuss a variety of topics such as soil amendment, organic gardening, how to propagate plants, or the importance of bees. They often have speakers join them to talk about their specialties. The group also sponsors garden tours for members. They usually visit 10 to 15 gardens and both hosts and guests enjoy this.Members of the Transcona Garden Club plant and care for the planters around the Transcona Museum and the Transcona Retired Citizens Centre. Two long-time members, Domia Derkatch and Louise Page, were instrumental in getting the Transcona Horse Pond transformed into the George Olive Nature Park, which officially opened in 2001. Years ago, the park was a construction dumping ground. Volunteers removed the debris and restored it to a quality 16-acre park.  Louise, a recent Honour 150 honouree, named the Transcona Garden Club as the charity of her choice to receive the $500 that came with her recognition.The club once ran a junior garden club, with 20 to 50 kids participating, that would do fun things such as planting beans, experiments with plants or planting in planters.  However, it was cancelled due to a lack of volunteers. To keep the club going, it runs various fundraisers, so keep checking Facebook for updates. In a normal year, it would also have a plant and bake sale in May. As of now, it still plans to hold its annual spring show at Kildonan Place in June.For more information, email club president, Lorena_Schipper@yahoo.ca  or visit the club’s Facebook page.  Happy gardening!Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Spring is here and it’s time to start thinking about planting your flower and vegetable gardens. I’m looking forward to joining the Transcona Garden Club for some helpful gardening tips, once COVID restrictions are over. For now, I’ll keep in touch through its Facebook page.

The Transcona Garden Club has been around for over 50 years and is affiliated with the Manitoba Horticultural Association.  Members used to meet the third Wednesday of the month (except in December and January) at the Transcona Retired Citizens Centre but, like all social gatherings, these meetings have been cancelled since COVID-19 restrictions came into effect.

Saturday, Apr. 17, 2021

Photo by Suzanne Hunter
Your garden may yield this kind of bounty if you join the Transcona Garden Clulb.

Keeping the lights on at Lighthouse Mission

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Keeping the lights on at Lighthouse Mission

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Tuesday, Mar. 16, 2021

When I was a teenager we’d take the bus from Transcona to get downtown. On Main Street we’d pass the historic narrow Zimmerman Block with the Lighthouse Mission sign, and I’d make a joke about how “it’d be a mission to find a light in that house”.Years later, Richard Kunzelman was canvassing the Transcona area and asked if I’d like to make a donation to Lighthouse Mission. He explained what it was all about so I made a donation (perhaps partly out of guilt for joking about it years ago).  Since then, I’ve looked forward to his visit every spring. I missed him last year because COVID-19 pre-empted any door-to-door canvassing and, while he was able to resume in the summer months, he’s again been unable to canvass into the foreseeable future.Beverly Atjay, operations manager at Lighthouse Mission, said this loss of canvassing has had a huge impact on the organization’s revenues.  After looking for a job in ministry, Kunzelman was hired at Lighthouse Mission and he’s been its sole door-to-door ambassador ever since, marking 25 years of service this past November. He said seminary training had not adequately prepared him to deal with poverty and street culture at the beginning of his career.  He had to learn those nuances on the job.  When he spends time at the mission, he’s amazed at what can be done to help just by  talking over a bowl of soup and a coffee.  Over the course of the year, through all weather, Kunzelman tirelessly canvasses as much of the city as he can and even some surrounding communities, such as Winkler. He told me how much he’s missing it. Over the years he’s developed many friendships with regular contributors and loves to meet new people to tell them about the mission.  He loves dogs, and said that when he gains the trust of a family pet, the person at the door seems more receptive to what he has to say.Lighthouse Mission is celebrating 110 years of serving Winnipeg’s inner city. A Christian-based agency, it partners with local churches and businesses to provide meals, food hampers, clothing and spiritual and health counselling for patrons who struggle with poverty, homelessness, addiction, mental and physical challenges.  The mission’s motto says, “Everyone matters”, and staff and volunteers believe all are deserving of acceptance and love.  This past year has been especially difficult, having to serve hundreds of breakfasts and lunches “to go,” as people were not allowed to dine inside. The mission’s Friday evening chili and church services were always well attended. The mission is now working on a renovation next door, at 667 Main St., to allow for additional space to accommodate social distancing. It’s not an easy feat, as the renovations must adhere to guidelines for historical buildings.  Until we are able to welcome Richard back at our doorsteps, you can donate to the mission at www.lighthousemission.ca, or by calling 204-943-9669, ext 2.  Let’s help “keep the lights on” so Lighthouse Mission can continue its important work serving the neediest in our city.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

When I was a teenager we’d take the bus from Transcona to get downtown. On Main Street we’d pass the historic narrow Zimmerman Block with the Lighthouse Mission sign, and I’d make a joke about how “it’d be a mission to find a light in that house”.

Years later, Richard Kunzelman was canvassing the Transcona area and asked if I’d like to make a donation to Lighthouse Mission. He explained what it was all about so I made a donation (perhaps partly out of guilt for joking about it years ago).  

Since then, I’ve looked forward to his visit every spring. I missed him last year because COVID-19 pre-empted any door-to-door canvassing and, while he was able to resume in the summer months, he’s again been unable to canvass into the foreseeable future.

Tuesday, Mar. 16, 2021

Supplied photo
Richard Kunzelman regularly canvasses the city for donations to Lighthouse Mission.

Hallmark movies are happily-ever-after viewing

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

Hallmark movies are happily-ever-after viewing

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Friday, Feb. 5, 2021

 

Countdown to Christmas, Hallmark Channel’s series of seasonal romantic movies (also featured on the W Network), is over for another year.  So, what’s a romance movie fan to do for the next 10 months? Never fear, Winterfest has just finished and Love Ever After movies began on Feb. 6, featuring Valentine’s Day themes. There is a new movie shown each Saturday and past favourites are repeated throughout the week.Some would say they’re all the same but fans would disagree. There is, however, a basic formula - A main character is single; he or she is put in a situation in which they meet someone new; as events unfold they are drawn together and love interest bloomes, but then there is what I call “the interruption,” an event or circumstance which could doom the relationship, such as a career opportunity the character has always wanted but alas, it’s in another city. Naturally, things are resolved and indeed they are meant to be together.    Many Hallmark Channel movies have been filmed in Manitoba so it’s fun to spot the landmarks. For example, in the Winterfest movie Snowkissed, I recognized Pine Ridge Hollow and the Fort Garry Hotel.In spring 2019, I was walking on McDermot Avenue toward Warehouse Artworks when I noticed what looked to be a hotdog cart decked out in Christmas décor. I looked to my right and there was Andrew Walker (a very popular Hallmark actor and one of my favorites) and Jodie Sweetin. I was too polite to get out my phone to take a picture but I did do a double take like a fan would.  They were filming Merry & Bright.The advantage of filming in Winnipeg is partly because of the provincial tax credits offered to movie producers, but also due to the selection of older buildings in the Exchange District that can stand in for buildings in other cities, and our close location to country views if needed.  What is the appeal of these movies that makes them so popular?  For sure it’s the guaranteed happy ending.  They are a nice reprieve from other movie genres as there is no swearing, violence, or bits you wouldn’t want your children to see.  They provide good, clean entertainment, often with just the right amount of humour, beautiful scenic backdrops, and romance, of course.  They are something to look forward to on a Saturday night, especially while our entertainment venues are closed.  So, tune in and watch the Love Ever After movies and, remember, there’s only eight months until the next set of Christmas movies begin.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Countdown to Christmas, Hallmark Channel’s series of seasonal romantic movies (also featured on the W Network), is over for another year.  

So, what’s a romance movie fan to do for the next 10 months? 

Friday, Feb. 5, 2021

Supplied photo
An avowed fan of Hallmark movies such as A Christmas Detour, starring Candace Cameron Bure and Paul Greene (above), correspondent Suzanne Hunter explains their appeal and why so many are made in Winnipeg.

Transcona wall art is mural of the year

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

Transcona wall art is mural of the year

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Wednesday, Jul. 3, 2019

 On June 20, I attended the 2018 mural of the year award presentation.The award was given for Life Goddess, an aerosol spray painting by Mike Johnston on the side of Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli at 126 Victoria Avenue West. As Johnston was out of town, a friend accepted the honour on his behalf.  An award was also given to Sevala’s and to Transcona BIZ, organizer of the project. Sevala’s also provided a delicious lunch that included perogies, cabbage rolls, and other Ukrainian food.  The ceremony was organized by Bob Buchanan. Nobody appreciates a mural as much as Buchanan and his wife Louise, who founded themuralsofwinnipeg.com in 2003 and keep it up to date on a regular basis.  A total of 33 new murals were completed in Winnipeg in 2018. The winner was chosen by a panel of 30 judges, including a few folks from Transcona:  Alex Morrison of Transcona BIZ, Carol Kirkhope and Rob Nykoluk.Judges included artists, photographers, a reporter, the director of Graffiti Gallery arts programming, a Tourism Winnipeg rep, and others. Life Goddess was chosen the winner not only for its beauty but also for its connection to the building and the Ukrainian heritage of many in Transcona.A previous Herald article tells the story of Life Goddess   — www.winnipegfreepress.com/our-communities/herald/correspondent/Life-Goddess-helps-liven-up-Transcona-493975341.html Buchanan and his wife took to the streets with a notebook, map and a digital camera in hand on a quest to find all the murals in Winnipeg. Their labour of love took a few months and they found art in the most unexpected places. Their diligence culminated with the idea of the mural registry. With assistance from their friend, Bob Bruce, the website was created. You can search for a mural by area, a specific street, or by artist. There are even interactive maps.  Write-ups are included about the artist and other pertinent information. When a mural disappears or is painted over, it is removed from the database but kept on record in the RIP section.If you are having a “staycation” this summer and looking for something to do, take a walk to see all 28 of Transcona’s murals. If you’re really adventurous, make it a challenge to find all the Winnipeg murals.  They really need to be seen in person to fully appreciate their beauty.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

 On June 20, I attended the 2018 mural of the year award presentation.

The award was given for Life Goddess, an aerosol spray painting by Mike Johnston on the side of Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli at 126 Victoria Avenue West. 

As Johnston was out of town, a friend accepted the honour on his behalf. An award was also given to Sevala’s and to Transcona BIZ, organizer of the project. Sevala’s also provided a delicious lunch that included perogies, cabbage rolls, and other Ukrainian food.  

Wednesday, Jul. 3, 2019

Herald
Del Demchuk (standing), of Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli, is pictured with Louise and Bob Buchanan of themuralsofwinnipeg.com at the presentation of the 2018 mural of the year award.

A blast from Transcona’s past

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

A blast from Transcona’s past

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Friday, May. 31, 2019

 

Calling all former students of Transcona Collegiate and Murdoch MacKay Collegiate from the 1950s up to the 1990s!  If you haven’t heard, a Transcona high school reunion will be held on Fri., June 7, at 7 p.m. at Nashville’s in the Canad Inns Destination Centre at 826 Regent Ave. W.Last year,  a reunion for TCI alumni from the 1950s to the 1980s was held at the same venue and folks had such a good time they requested another one.  Committee members Bill Blaikie, Hank Haaksma, Sherrill Greenaway, Tom Thompson, Sharon Lamoureux and Dave Haack are responsible for organizing this year’s event, and were involved with last year’s as well.As Transcona is a smaller community, the committee decided to invite all former Transcona high school students to the event, “since we’re all friends in friendly Transcona”, as it says on the website.The reunion will be a casual affair, in the style of a social. You can dress to impress or wear whatever suits you for a social environment. There will be social-style food (the usual rye bread and kielbasa, etc.), and great music from the era. At last year’s reunion the music was very well received and people danced the night away on a full dance floor. Yearbooks will be on display and some videos of past school functions will be played. It will be fun to spot yourself and your friends from “back in the day”. There will also be some great door prizes, as well. Any profits from this event will be donated to L’Arche Tova Café. The café provides employment to people with development disabilities and encourages the general public to interact with and get to know them, in addition to providing tasty food.You can pick up tickets at the Canad Inn, Ball Insurance, or directly from Sherrill (Ball) Greenaway at rcgreen@mts.net; or Sharon (Lazaruk) Lamoureux at lamour@shaw.ca.To purchase tickets online go www.transconareunion.com and follow the link to their Eventbrite page.  Tickets may also be purchased at the door, as long as pre-sold tickets do not reach their maximum. The venue holds 700 people.The evening will be a rare chance to reconnect with old friends and classmates and some folks are coming from as far away as B.C, Ontario, and California. So come on out for a fun evening.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Calling all former students of Transcona Collegiate and Murdoch MacKay Collegiate from the 1950s up to the 1990s!  

If you haven’t heard, a Transcona high school reunion will be held on Fri., June 7, at 7 p.m. at Nashville’s in the Canad Inns Destination Centre at 826 Regent Ave. W.

Friday, May. 31, 2019

Suzanne Hunter
Graduates of Murdoch Mackay Collegiate (pictured here) and Transcona Collegiate are all invited to this year’s Transcona high school reunion at Nashville’s in the Canad Inns Destination Centre Transcona.

Mural by Pink Panda livens up Scout Hall

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Mural by Pink Panda livens up Scout Hall

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Friday, May. 3, 2019

In an April 2018 article titled “Help save the Transcona Scout Hall,” I wrote that “...from the outside, the hall looks like a nondescript, square building.”Well, thanks to visual artist and freelance graphic designer Cat Hues, whose artist name is Pink Panda, that is no longer the case. Last summer she painted the whimsical mural Everything will be OK on the wall at the corner of Winona Street and Melrose Avenue East. Transcona BIZ commissioned the 67-square-metre mural, choosing Hues for her unique and different style. The mural took 40 hours to complete and she has dedicated it to kids and kids-at-heart.  The monsters depicted are an expression of her emotions — scared, happy, anxious, sad, but at end, the monster is giving the thumbs up, signalling that everything is OK.  Hues graduated from the University of Manitoba with a degree in fine arts and had been working in graphic design for over a decade until 2016, when she realized how much she missed painting and drawing. Now she does all different kinds of art projects.  She fell in love with using spray paint because of the challenges. Pressure sensitivity, the distance from the working surface, and even arm movement all contribute to the success of the painting.  Hues does not consider herself a graffiti artist but is inspired by street art and its abstract surrealism. Automatism — “the avoidance of conscious intention in producing works of art, especially by using subconscious associations” — is the term used by several people when describing her style.  She developed her style using random line work. She learned to view any object, animal, flora or fauna as continuous, ongoing line work. She would see different faces and characters and that’s how she got her monsters to appear.  Hues recently had her first solo art exhibit at Cre8ery. The paintings had super-vibrant neon colours and my favourites were painted in UV reactive paint that seemed to come to life under black lights in a dark room.An entrepreneur, Hues also has her own clothing brand utilizing her graphic design background. She sells prints, stickers, limited edition T-shirts and will be soon be unveiling a line of hats.Hues enjoys live painting and sharing her art with the public. Throughout the summer, she makes chalk drawings around Winnipeg and interacts with the public with her treasure hunt art finds. She hides an original piece of art within the city and posts clues on her social media sites. The first person to find it gets to keep the artwork. Hues is available for commissions for indoor or outdoor mural work. Or, If you have a unique idea, she is open to collaborating.  Look for Pink Panda at Red River College’s FanQuest at 160 Princess St. on  June 22 and 23.  You should also visit her website at www.pinkpanda.ca or her Facebook page at facebook.com/pinkpandacreative/ Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

In an April 2018 article titled “Help save the Transcona Scout Hall,” I wrote that “...from the outside, the hall looks like a nondescript, square building.”

Well, thanks to visual artist and freelance graphic designer Cat Hues, whose artist name is Pink Panda, that is no longer the case. Last summer she painted the whimsical mural Everything will be OK on the wall at the corner of Winona Street and Melrose Avenue East. 

Transcona BIZ commissioned the 67-square-metre mural, choosing Hues for her unique and different style. The mural took 40 hours to complete and she has dedicated it to kids and kids-at-heart.  

Friday, May. 3, 2019

Herald
Pink Panda’s mural, Everything will be OK, has brought the Transcona Scout Hall to life.

Transcona artist to open new show

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

Transcona artist to open new show

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Friday, Apr. 12, 2019

 

Lisa Bissett, raised in Transcona and an alumna of Transcona Collegiate Institute, has an upcoming art show entitled Pause opening at Warehouse Artworks (222 McDermot Ave.) on May 3 and running to May 17. The show’s opening night coincides with First Fridays, a monthly event during which most Exchange District art galleries are open to the public between 5 and 9 p.m. It’s a great opportunity to view the wide-ranging styles of emerging and established artists’ works, but especially significant for those artists opening a show, such as Bissett.If you recognize Bissett’s name it could be because she is the daughter of Doreen Bissett, founder of the well-known Doreen Bissett School of Dance. Lisa told me her mom still teaches Irish dancing at the school.  Bissett grew up dancing and playing guitar and didn’t have any interest in making art until she was in her 30s. She began dabbling with drawing and, after encouragement from friends, she took some drawing classes.  Making art helped her be calm and in the moment.   She became more serious about art and took her first year of fine arts while living in Red Deer, Alta., completing the degree at the University of Manitoba while majoring in ceramics after moving back to Winnipeg.  After the birth of her son she signed up for a Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art mentorship, a program whereby MAWA pairs up emerging artists with a senior, established artists. Bissett’s mentor was Reva Stone. In addition to the individual attention, program participants meet as a group to talk about their art, to visit art studios, to critique each other’s work, to learn about grant applications and to attend other training sessions.  Bissett says the nurturing experience pushed her to overcome her hesitancy about claiming her place as an artist.While she has a few drawings in the show, Bissett works mostly in acrylic painting. Her work is representational (not abstract), with her own interpretation of the subject matter.  She loves diving into patterns such as those you see in wallpaper, or brick walls, as in, Studio View with Dove and Rooster.  She finds it meditative.Bissett has received two grants from the Manitoba Arts Council. From the first she focused on everyday objects and sold most of those paintings. The second helped her put together a series that she refers to as Change,  about looking at women’s bodies as they are in relation to vulnerable situations (for example, at a public swimming pool wearing a swimsuit).  The still life series When Dove Met Rooster  reflects on her own relationships and life experiences. She played with characters in different scenarios, as suggested by titles such as Still Life with Boredom and Still Life with Self-sufficiency. To see more of her artwork, visit Instagram.com/LisaBissett8045 and, of course, check out her exhibition at Warehouse Artworks.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Lisa Bissett, raised in Transcona and an alumna of Transcona Collegiate Institute, has an upcoming art show entitled Pause opening at Warehouse Artworks (222 McDermot Ave.) on May 3 and running to May 17. 

The show’s opening night coincides with First Fridays, a monthly event during which most Exchange District art galleries are open to the public between 5 and 9 p.m. It’s a great opportunity to view the wide-ranging styles of emerging and established artists’ works, but especially significant for those artists opening a show, such as Bissett.

Friday, Apr. 12, 2019

Herald
Lisa Bissett’s Studio View with Dove and Rooster.

Don’t be driven to distraction

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

Don’t be driven to distraction

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Friday, Mar. 8, 2019

I consider myself a good driver. However, we all get distracted now and then. Recently, I was talking to my passenger when he said, “What are you doing?” and I realized I was proceeding through a red light.  I was shocked. Needless to say, it was a humbling experience, and I’ve taken it as a warning. Thankfully, in this case there was no traffic. A sobering fact is that one in three deaths from vehicle collisions in Manitoba is because of distracted driving.There are the obvious distractions, such as driving and using your cell phone, which is against the law, but what about other things that keep our attention from the road?Take for example, the electronic billboards around the city. They are big, bright, and designed to make us look at them with messages changing every 10 seconds or so. One that recently caught my eye is the huge billboard next to the Nairn overpass. The first time I noticed it was when travelling westbound at night. My eyes were just drawn to this large bright light. The billboard is taller than the bridge itself.  It’s on the left but at a point on the road where the road curves to the right, opposite to the direction in which you should be looking.There are myriad other distractions, such as children demanding your attention from the back seat, pets in the car getting antsy, adjusting the radio, putting on makeup, eating and drinking. I’ve even seen people with books on their laps while driving.So how do we deal with all these things that take our minds off the task at hand?  To quote from the from the Manitoba Public Insurance publication Focus on the Road: “The most important thing to think about when driving is… driving”.  To read the document, visit https://www.mpi.mb.ca/en/PDFs/Distracted-Driving.pdfIf you are able to multi-task at your job, you may be rewarded but, when driving, there is only one task and that is keeping your eyes on the road. If you need to deal with children or pets, pull over. Turn your phone off and let voicemail pick up any calls. Don’t eat while driving. When you see those billboards begging for your attention, just ignore them. Do everything you can to prevent distractions, and learn to tune out those you can’t control.So, next time you are tempted to watch the dancing pizza guy at the corner of Plessis and Regent, try to ignore him. But by all means enjoy his antics if you are the passenger.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

I consider myself a good driver. However, we all get distracted now and then. 

Recently, I was talking to my passenger when he said, “What are you doing?” and I realized I was proceeding through a red light.  

I was shocked. Needless to say, it was a humbling experience, and I’ve taken it as a warning. Thankfully, in this case there was no traffic. A sobering fact is that one in three deaths from vehicle collisions in Manitoba is because of distracted driving.

Friday, Mar. 8, 2019

Herald
Bright electronic billboards, such as this one near the Nairn overpass, can be distracting if you’re not careful.

Folk Fest tips for first-timers

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

Folk Fest tips for first-timers

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019

 

As a fairly recent attendee of the Winnipeg Folk Fest held each summer in Birds Hill Provincial Park, I’d like to share my experience with those of you who have never partaken in the experience but may be thinking about it.About five years ago a friend convinced me to come out for a day. It was warm and sunny, the music was so good, and I found myself wishing I had planned to attend all four days. Since then, I’ve been hooked.  For those of us in Transcona, we are fortunate that the park is a short drive away.  While many folks camp there, I prefer to drive each day since it’s only a 20-minute commute. Parking is well organized with attendants directing traffic.  During the day there are many stages featuring artists at the same time. Once the performers list is announced on the Folk Fest website, I take the time to read about them and click on the links to sample their music.  From there, I rate them and that helps me determine which stage I need to be at.  My check list for a successful day: Comfortable clothing and footwear, hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, water spritzer (to keep me cool), beach chair (no taller than two feet) with straps so I can carry it on my back and pockets to store all my stuff, tarp for reserving spot at main stage evening shows, refillable water bottle, snacks, cash, rain poncho (compact cheap plastic one), cell phone and my ticket!The food vendors offer a wide variety of decently priced delicious food served on compostable dishes.  I like to sample something different each night.  The best part of the festival for me is the overall vibe. Being outside among the trees in the fresh air, the camaraderie among the people and of course the fabulous music really makes for a relaxed atmosphere. I also love the great selection of amazingly talented musicians, that “wow” moment when I discover somebody new who exceeds my expectations, and getting back together with friends to eat supper on our tarp at the main stage to compare notes on how our day went.  There is so much more to the festival such as children’s entertainment, two main areas where you can enjoy an alcoholic beverage, unique hand-crafted vendors, and others that you have to check out their website for more information: https://www.winnipegfolkfestival.ca/tickets/This year’s Winnipeg Folk Fest is July 11 to 14, 2019.  Tickets are on sale now.  You can get a four-day pass, or a single day admission and if you purchase before April 30 you will receive a discount.  If you’ve never been, I highly recommend you check it out, especially if you are a music lover. With proper planning, you’re almost guaranteed to have a phenomenal experience.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

As a fairly recent attendee of the Winnipeg Folk Fest held each summer in Birds Hill Provincial Park, I’d like to share my experience with those of you who have never partaken in the experience but may be thinking about it.

About five years ago a friend convinced me to come out for a day. It was warm and sunny, the music was so good, and I found myself wishing I had planned to attend all four days. Since then, I’ve been hooked.  

Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019

Suzanne Hunter
A moonlit night at the Winnipeg Folk Festival in Birds Hill Park.

BIZ gets crafty with December sale

Suzanne Hunter 4 minute read Preview

BIZ gets crafty with December sale

Suzanne Hunter 4 minute read Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018

 

’Tis the season for craft sales. Craft markets are an ideal place to pick up unique one-of-a-kind gifts. There are many across the city at this time of year. I didn’t have to travel too far to find one in the heart of Transcona.  Transcona BIZ held its third annual Christmas Market on Sat., Dec. 1. Thirty-seven vendors participated in the event, which featured a wide array of goods for sale.  Jessica Campbell, of Transcona BIZ, said the December market gives the community a chance to visit folks who frequent the summer markets but may not have seen each other for a while. They chose the location, the Transcona Memorial United Church at 209 Yale Avenue W, as it could accommodate all abilities, complete with an elevator and enough space to have wide aisles between tables.   The shopping experience was enjoyable with everyone in a festive mood. To add to the ambience the duo Everything + played guitar and ukulele and sang some festive Christmas carols. I was impressed by the talent and calibre of workmanship. Most of the vendors were residents of Transcona, with a few from other areas of the city. Some are retired, dedicating their free time to crafting, others own small businesses.  There was an assortment of home-based businesses such as the well-known Watkins, Tupperware, Epicure and Tiber River. As well there were many tables featuring jewelry, baked goods and Christmas ornaments.  Vendors donated prizes to raise funds for the Transcona Food Bank.I particularly liked the repurposed teacups and saucers made into bird feeders and pots for succulents by Simply BeauTeaful. I also admired the unique pottery by Debbie, including a bowl meant for knitters that holds a ball of wool and knitting needles. There was delicious homemade pineapple jam from Little Luxuries by Kat & Matt. There were so many items for sale it was hard to decide what I was going to purchase.As the event has been so successful since its inception, the BIZ will continue to host it each year on the first Saturday of December.  It was a great opportunity to support local vendors. See you there next year. Have a happy holiday season.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

’Tis the season for craft sales. Craft markets are an ideal place to pick up unique one-of-a-kind gifts. There are many across the city at this time of year. I didn’t have to travel too far to find one in the heart of Transcona.  

Transcona BIZ held its third annual Christmas Market on Sat., Dec. 1. Thirty-seven vendors participated in the event, which featured a wide array of goods for sale.  

Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018

Supplied photo by Suzanne Hunter
Pat Myron, with Homemade Creations Dress My Dolls, was one of 37 vendors who participated in the Transcona’ BIZ’s annual Christmas Market on Dec. 1

Clearing the path to an organized life

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

Clearing the path to an organized life

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Friday, Nov. 16, 2018

The word “empty” in the phrase “empty nest syndrome” is a bit of a misnomer for me. My daughter and two grandchildren recently moved out and the house is now mine to reign over freely for the first time in years.However, it certainly is not empty.  Over the years we accumulated more and more stuff, the bulk of which were toys. Their new place does not have room for all their belongings, so a lot of their stuff was left behind and some of my own belongings have been sneakily overflowing from drawers and closets.All  the rooms in the house were in a state of disorganization. The living room featured wall-to-wall toys. My bedroom had become an office, art studio, laundry folding depot and catch-all for stuff that had nowhere else to go. My daughter’s room still contains her keepsakes, clothes not in season, and other whatnots.  In the foreword of professional organizer Peter Walsh’s book, How to organize just about everything, he says, “Being organized is the key to a simpler life, in which the things we own reflect who we are and everything has its place.” How I envy an organized, simple life!So, after years of ignoring the chaos, I’ve decided to busy myself with purging and cleaning.  To accomplish this, I made a “to do” list, including boxes to check when I’ve finished a task. My main goal is to convert my daughter’s old room into my art studio and craft room. I’m pretty excited about that and I’ve already completed the grandkids’ room so that when they have sleepovers their bunk beds are neat and tidy and their toys are organized on shelving. Here are my tips for anybody in the same predicament:• Make a list for each room — I posted mine on the fridge. Include even the smallest details, such as dusting the tops of cupboards. Don’t include the everyday things, such as washing the dishes.• Set a realistic deadline that will work for you — Don’t say two weeks when you know that will mean working every day to get it done.• When tackling clutter, make boxes labelled garbage, donate or sell, recycling and keep. Find permanent storage places for the items you intend to keep.• If you get overwhelmed, take a break.  Watch that Christmas movie or just chill out for the evening if you are tired after work.  • Be joyful each time you tick something off the list. Each accomplishment gets you one step closer to your goal.I do miss the grandkids being around but  I am enjoying the quiet house. What I enjoy most, however, is being able to crank my tunes when I get into cleaning mode, even if it’s 10 at night!Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

The word “empty” in the phrase “empty nest syndrome” is a bit of a misnomer for me. 

My daughter and two grandchildren recently moved out and the house is now mine to reign over freely for the first time in years.

However, it certainly is not empty.  

Friday, Nov. 16, 2018

Herald
Our columnist’s to-do list is helping her reorganize her house now that her daughter and grandchildren have moved out.

Halloween display raises awareness

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

Halloween display raises awareness

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Monday, Oct. 22, 2018

I’ve been admiring a yard in my neighbourhood that is all decked out for Halloween.A witch must have been drinking her own brew and crashed into a tree. A giant spider has inhabited the front lawn and spun its webs all over. Pumpkin and skeleton people are watching for intruders.“Willow’s Web” is written in large letters in the front window of the home at 1137 Devonshire Dr. W.  Anna Siedler wants to share awareness and raise research funds for her daughter Willow’s ultra-rare genetic disease, NGLY1 deficiency.Anna decorated the yard to have some fun but, more importantly, to get people to read the information posted at the sidewalk, which features a barcode link to the Willows Web page, where donations can be made to the Grace Science Foundation.  When people inherit two defective NGLY1 genes, their bodies cannot separate and remove sugars from proteins. This deficiency results in significant health problems,  including life-threatening liver issues, developmental delays, lack of tears when crying, seizures, and other serious symptoms.  It has only been a mere five years or so since the discovery of this disease. There is currently no cure, hence the need for research. Less than 70 people have been diagnosed worldwide but there may be more, as some of the symptoms mimic those of other diseases.Willow is only three years old and cannot walk or talk. Speech and occupational therapists come to the house to help her achieve whatever level she can. “You celebrate things you never thought you would, like when she was able to hold her head up,” Anna says.The Siedler family has hope that, with the research being done by the Grace Science Foundation, a cure will be found, or at least strides made in finding treatments.  The Siedlers chose this American-based research group, which was started by a parent of a child with the disease, for its dedication to researching NGLY1 Deficiency. Grace Science has gathered a team of experts from a variety of countries, hence the reference to the “web,” which collects all the findings from researchers and shares the information. So far, it has managed to publish multiple papers in the very short time it has existed. Anna likes that it is not a drug-targeted company.If you are in the Kildonan Meadows area from now until Halloween, bring the kids to see the giant spider. Anna loves seeing them looking at the yard and enjoys making them happy.For a link to the donation page, visit https://gracescience.org/willows-web.  All donations go toward research. Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

I’ve been admiring a yard in my neighbourhood that is all decked out for Halloween.

A witch must have been drinking her own brew and crashed into a tree. A giant spider has inhabited the front lawn and spun its webs all over. Pumpkin and skeleton people are watching for intruders.

“Willow’s Web” is written in large letters in the front window of the home at 1137 Devonshire Dr. W.  

Monday, Oct. 22, 2018

Herald
“Willow's Web” in this yard in Kildonan Meadows is a Halloween display that raises awareness of NGLY1 deficiency, an extremely rare genetic disorder.

Life Goddess helps liven up Transcona

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

Life Goddess helps liven up Transcona

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Friday, Sep. 21, 2018

 

Life Goddess, the latest addition to the wonderful murals in the heart of Transcona, is a vibrant and stunningly beautiful work of art.Located on the side of the Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli and Catering building at 126 Victoria Ave. W., the mural is 15 metres wide by four metres high. It was painted using aerosol spray paint by artist Michael Johnston, who said it “celebrates strength, confidence, empowerment and beauty.”  Transcona BIZ has a mural program to “bring the best of urban art to our community,” according to its website. “We’ve engaged some of the finest urban street artists to bring our murals up to international standards.”  Indeed they have.Just take a walk around downtown Transcona and you’ll find many wonderful artworks from a variety of talented artists.  The BIZ approached Sevala’s owners asking if they would like to have a mural painted on the side of their building. Del Demchuk said he was happy to oblige, if the painting could have a Ukrainian theme.  Johnston collaborated with the Demchuk family to get a feel of what they were about.Amy Teres, whose parents currently own Sevala’s, told me she and her sister, Sam Demchuk, are working towards taking over the business one day. It was founded by their grandmother, Sylvia Beck, who was a dreamer and a strong, independent woman who worked through barriers to get the business up and running.Sam and Amy were inspired by her and are proud to be the third generation to carry on her legacy. With this information, Johnston proposed the idea of portraying a modern young woman of Ukrainian heritage who exudes confidence and strength. They were excited about this concept.The BIZ board of directors approved the design. BIZ members want their sponsored murals to be benefit of the community and not be advertisements for any particular business. Through funds generated by its membership fees, the BIZ pays the artist and space is donated by the business owner.  In this instance, Sevala’s also provided a donation.The mural depicts a bejeweled young Ukrainian woman wearing a traditional head wreath, called a vinok, made of flowers, grains and grasses. Multi-coloured ribbons attached to the back of the wreath blow in the wind. Sunflowers, the national flower of Ukraine, and poppies, which grow in abundance there, complement the beauty of the wreath.Del told me he couldn’t be happier with the final painting, saying they’ve been getting “super good” comments about it. People from all areas of the city have been stopping by to see it and take photos.  Johnston, who is also an established tattoo artist, has created many other murals in the city. Next time you walk past a mural check the signature of the artist.  Wall art is a significant contribution to our city’s vibrancy and it’s important to recognize the talented artisans we have right here in Winnipeg.Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona.  

Life Goddess, the latest addition to the wonderful murals in the heart of Transcona, is a vibrant and stunningly beautiful work of art.

Located on the side of the Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli and Catering building at 126 Victoria Ave. W., the mural is 15 metres wide by four metres high. It was painted using aerosol spray paint by artist Michael Johnston, who said it “celebrates strength, confidence, empowerment and beauty.”  

Friday, Sep. 21, 2018

Herald
Life Goddess, by Michael Johnston, is the latest mural to beautify Transcona. It is located on the side of Sevala’s Ukrainian Deli and Catering on Victoria Avenue West.

Have you though lately about fire prevention?

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Preview

Have you though lately about fire prevention?

Suzanne Hunter 6 minute read Friday, Jul. 27, 2018

On the morning of July 16 I heard on the radio that traffic was blocked near Day Street due to a fire in an apartment block on Kildare Avenue East. One person was sent to hospital in critical condition as a result.It got me to thinking about my own experiences with fire, both of which were thankfully minor events.  When I lived in an apartment, I once put the kettle on the stove to make tea and sat on the couch while it heated up. A few minutes later, I caught a reflection of flames in the living room window. I had inadvertently turned on the wrong element and an empty plastic watering can on the stove had caught fire. I grabbed a box of baking soda and was able to put it out. There was black ash everywhere and a horrible chemical smell but no further damage.  The other incident happened one Christmas as I was getting the turkey out of the oven. My cloth oven mitts grazed the bottom element and I didn’t even notice they were on fire until my brother said “you’re on fire!” I dabbed the mitt into the sink, which was full of water. But he said, “you’re still on fire!”  My loose sweatpants had been swiped by the burning oven mitt and caught fire at my knees, so I slapped myself with the wet oven mitt. They sound rather comical now, but either incident could have quickly escalated into something worse, all because of my own carelessness.  Some fires are unpreventable, such as lightning strikes or unexpected wiring shortages in electrical appliances. However, many can be avoided with planning and due diligence. Everybody knows to make sure your smoke alarms are in working order, but how often do you actually check?  If you live in an apartment, make sure you are familiar with the evacuation procedures that should be posted on each floor, and never ignore a fire alarm.  When I lived in an apartment, I recall everybody poking their heads into the hallway to see what was going on when an alarm rang. We all went back inside if nothing was evident. But you should always leave the premises. If it is false alarm, all you will miss is a few minutes outside but, if it’s real, ignoring an alarm may mean you may have lost precious time to evacuate safely.  We’ve all been trained as children what to do if there is a fire but do we still pay heed to those precautions as adults?  If you haven’t given it much thought lately, it may be a good idea to visit the Winnipeg Fire Department fire prevention page at www.winnipeg.ca/fps/FirePrevention.  It offers good tips, such as, “Do not extinguish cigars or cigarettes in potted plants. Potting soil and peat moss can be flammable”.  I did not know that!  Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

On the morning of July 16 I heard on the radio that traffic was blocked near Day Street due to a fire in an apartment block on Kildare Avenue East. One person was sent to hospital in critical condition as a result.

It got me to thinking about my own experiences with fire, both of which were thankfully minor events.  

When I lived in an apartment, I once put the kettle on the stove to make tea and sat on the couch while it heated up. A few minutes later, I caught a reflection of flames in the living room window. I had inadvertently turned on the wrong element and an empty plastic watering can on the stove had caught fire. 

Friday, Jul. 27, 2018

On the morning of July 16 I heard on the radio that traffic was blocked near Day Street due to a fire in an apartment block on Kildare Avenue East. One person was sent to hospital in critical condition as a result.It got me to thinking about my own experiences with fire, both of which were thankfully minor events.  When I lived in an apartment, I once put the kettle on the stove to make tea and sat on the couch while it heated up. A few minutes later, I caught a reflection of flames in the living room window. I had inadvertently turned on the wrong element and an empty plastic watering can on the stove had caught fire. I grabbed a box of baking soda and was able to put it out. There was black ash everywhere and a horrible chemical smell but no further damage.  The other incident happened one Christmas as I was getting the turkey out of the oven. My cloth oven mitts grazed the bottom element and I didn’t even notice they were on fire until my brother said “you’re on fire!” I dabbed the mitt into the sink, which was full of water. But he said, “you’re still on fire!”  My loose sweatpants had been swiped by the burning oven mitt and caught fire at my knees, so I slapped myself with the wet oven mitt. They sound rather comical now, but either incident could have quickly escalated into something worse, all because of my own carelessness.  Some fires are unpreventable, such as lightning strikes or unexpected wiring shortages in electrical appliances. However, many can be avoided with planning and due diligence. Everybody knows to make sure your smoke alarms are in working order, but how often do you actually check?  If you live in an apartment, make sure you are familiar with the evacuation procedures that should be posted on each floor, and never ignore a fire alarm.  When I lived in an apartment, I recall everybody poking their heads into the hallway to see what was going on when an alarm rang. We all went back inside if nothing was evident. But you should always leave the premises. If it is false alarm, all you will miss is a few minutes outside but, if it’s real, ignoring an alarm may mean you may have lost precious time to evacuate safely.  We’ve all been trained as children what to do if there is a fire but do we still pay heed to those precautions as adults?  If you haven’t given it much thought lately, it may be a good idea to visit the Winnipeg Fire Department fire prevention page at www.winnipeg.ca/fps/FirePrevention.  It offers good tips, such as, “Do not extinguish cigars or cigarettes in potted plants. Potting soil and peat moss can be flammable”.  I did not know that!  Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. 

On the morning of July 16 I heard on the radio that traffic was blocked near Day Street due to a fire in an apartment block on Kildare Avenue East. One person was sent to hospital in critical condition as a result.

It got me to thinking about my own experiences with fire, both of which were thankfully minor events.  

When I lived in an apartment, I once put the kettle on the stove to make tea and sat on the couch while it heated up. A few minutes later, I caught a reflection of flames in the living room window. I had inadvertently turned on the wrong element and an empty plastic watering can on the stove had caught fire. 

Get a few reps in while on the trail

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Preview

Get a few reps in while on the trail

Suzanne Hunter 5 minute read Tuesday, Jul. 3, 2018

The Transcona Trail, the 6.7-kilometre long asphalt path, runs from the east perimeter to Regent Avenue near Costco.  It is used daily by runners, walkers, cyclists, rollerbladers, folks in wheelchairs, and parents with children in strollers. Some are just out to enjoy the fresh air and a quiet stroll away from traffic, and others enjoy it for a serious cardio workout.There is now a neat new fitness park that complements the trail — the aptly named Transcona Trail Park. Located at the corner of Hoka Street and McMeans Avenue West, about the mid-point on the trail, it makes a great pitstop for those wanting to supplement their cardio workout with some strength training. Essentially it is a park for grownups — there are no swings or slides here!The park is bordered with nice wood fencing, has a wood-chip base, and some tall decorative grasses planted at the entrance with a welcoming park sign. There are also two benches to use for a well needed rest, one of which is under the shade of the trees.  There are three pieces of equipment, which at first glance doesn’t look like much. However, each piece is designed for multiple exercises. If you use all suggested methods, you will have a full body workout by the time you are done.  The equipment is made by Healthy Beat specifically for outdoor parks. Each station has a diagram depicting how to use it properly, and also shows which muscles you are working out for that particular exercise. I would recommend first viewing their YouTube instructional videos at playlsi.com/hbThey demonstrate all their equipment, but you can easily skip to the ones pertaining to the park equipment.  One station features an ab crunch and leg lift, which looks easy, but when done properly and with the appropriate amount of repetitions for your comfort limit, provides a substantial workout. There is a push up station for your chest, lats and triceps. The assisted row concentrates on working the biceps and shoulders. The pullup and dip exercises work your back muscles and arms, as well as triceps and chest. Where there is a dial for determining different settings, as on the squat press, always start on the lowest setting and work up to what is comfortable.Come out and try this park. It is a great way to work on your strength and flexibility – and it’s free!Suzanne Hunter is a community correspondent for Transcona. The Transcona Trail, the 6.7-kilometre long asphalt path, runs from the east perimeter to Regent Avenue near Costco.  

It is used daily by runners, walkers, cyclists, rollerbladers, folks in wheelchairs, and parents with children in strollers. Some are just out to enjoy the fresh air and a quiet stroll away from traffic, and others enjoy it for a serious cardio workout.

There is now a neat new fitness park that complements the trail — the aptly named Transcona Trail Park. Located at the corner of Hoka Street and McMeans Avenue West, about the mid-point on the trail, it makes a great pitstop for those wanting to supplement their cardio workout with some strength training. Essentially it is a park for grownups — there are no swings or slides here!

The park is bordered with nice wood fencing, has a wood-chip base, and some tall decorative grasses planted at the entrance with a welcoming park sign. There are also two benches to use for a well needed rest, one of which is under the shade of the trees. There are three pieces of equipment, which at first glance doesn’t look like much. However, each piece is designed for multiple exercises. If you use all suggested methods, you will have a full body workout by the time you are done.  

Tuesday, Jul. 3, 2018

Supplied photo
A new fitness park complements the Transcona Trail, offering trail users an opportunity to supplement their cardio workout with some strength training.

Worm manure a real treat for your garden

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Preview

Worm manure a real treat for your garden

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Friday, Jun. 1, 2018

By now most gardeners have started planting.  This year is the earliest I’ve ever planted. As of May 28, everything in my vegetable garden had sprouted.

Once your gardens start growing, you need to think about feeding those vegetables and flowers. I usually use the liquid or granular chemical options available in the hardware store. But as I become more attuned to the natural way of doing things, I’m switching to compost. I have a bin in the backyard in which I throw all my vegetable and fruit scraps, as well as grass clippings and leaves. The process is effective but takes a while.

I recently went to a vermicomposting workshop sponsored by Greenpeace and Green Action Centre. Vermicomposting basically involves feeding worms leftover fruits and vegetables that they then turn into compost (worm manure).

Teresa Looy of Green Action Centre showed us how easy it is to set up a vermicomposting system. You only need two bins, bedding, leftover food waste and, of course, some worms.

Friday, Jun. 1, 2018

Herald
Teresa Looy, composting expert at Green Action Centre, displays a vermicomposting bin.

Help save the Transcona Scout hall

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Preview

Help save the Transcona Scout hall

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Friday, Apr. 20, 2018

I remember when I was a kid walking down a couple blocks to play in the park next to the First Transcona Scout Hall at the corner of Winona Street and Melrose Avenue West.

I’ve been to a few bridal showers in that hall, which is available for rent when not used by 1st Transcona. Now my grandsons attend Beavers and Scouts in that same building.

From the outside, the hall looks like a nondescript, square building. There is nothing particularly fancy about the inside, either, but it has been the beloved meeting place of countless Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Ventures over the years — not to mention their dedicated leaders.

It is also the headquarters for joint Scout projects in the Winnipeg area. It has a large meeting room, a kitchen and washroom facilities — and that’s all they need.

Friday, Apr. 20, 2018

Herald
The First Transcona Scout, Cub and Beaver Headquarters needs a new roof or risks being condemned.

Eating for personal and global health

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Preview

Eating for personal and global health

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Thursday, Apr. 12, 2018

If someone told me a year ago that by this time I’d seriously consider becoming a vegetarian I would not have believed them. I love my barbecued steak and sweet-and-sour spare ribs!

Well, I have given up eating meat as of three weeks ago. Yes, I care about animals, but that’s not the reason I made this decision. I’ve done it mainly for my health and the environment.My cholesterol levels have been high for years. I received a stern warning from my cardiologist to take the prescribed medications daily and was told I wasn’t doing what I could with regard to my diet.

I need to reduce the “bad” (LDL) cholesterol and increase the “good” (HDL). This is one of the reasons I’ve cut out meat. Meat contains saturated fat which contributes to high cholesterol and other health problems. In addition, it’s been reported that some processed meat and cooked meats may contain carcinogenic compounds.

By switching to a plant-based diet, I’m hoping to improve my overall health.  I borrowed a book from the library, The Plant-Powered Diet. It’s not a “diet book” aimed at losing weight, rather it’s one that explains everything you need to know about eating to maximize the nutritional benefits of your food. It made logical sense, so I started to incorporate some of its suggestions.

Thursday, Apr. 12, 2018

Suzanne Hunter
A plant-based diet can fulfill a person’s nutritional needs while also offering plenty of variety and taste.

Learning the art and craft of weaving

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Preview

Learning the art and craft of weaving

Suzanne Hunter 3 minute read Friday, Mar. 9, 2018

On March 6, I attended a sold-out workshop at the Transcona Museum called The Art of Weaving, presented by Kendra Hobbs Manness of Black Thistle Creative.

The evening was relaxing, with participants offered a complimentary glass of wine and good tunes playing in the background.

Weaving has been around since at least 5000 BC. In those days, people used plant fibres, later progressing to cotton, wools, and silks. With the advent of the industrial revolution, weaving evolved from a home-based, labour-intensive activity into a factory process. These days there are craftspeople who have revived the simple forms of weaving to create decorative art.

Weaving is essentially a method of fabric-making in which sets of yarn are interlaced at right angles. The longitudinal threads are called the warp and the lateral the weft. The device that holds these yarns is called a loom.

Friday, Mar. 9, 2018

Photo by Suzanne Hunter
Participants in The Art of Weaving workshop at the Transcona Museum show off their creations.