What a difference a year made in Royalwood


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 22/12/2021 (527 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

We began 2021 in code-red pandemic conditions, but that didn’t stop area resident Tony Braccio from launching Italian eatery Pasta di Casa.

By the time we reached late August, Blush Massage + Beauty was able to open its doors on St. Anne’s Road, across the street from Southglen Shopping Centre.

Along the way, we met Denise Turanli and Mike Boychuk of Royal Wicker, who design and create their own line of outdoor furniture. Most recently, lawyer Ifeyinwa Echezona described her journey of arriving from Nigeria to living in her Royalwood dream home and opening her own practice.

Supplied photo Max M. was one of the Royalwood youth making a difference in the neighbourhood in 2021, raising $743 for Save our Seine.

Stories of young people in our neighbourhood following their passions and contributing to our community came to the forefront.

Readers met Cassie Dauphinais, whose Girl Guide unit collected nearly 800 books for underprivileged children. Ben Lehman, age 14, started his own dog-walking business to stay active and gain work experience. Max M., aged seven, raised $743 for Save Our Seine through a lemonade stand he helped build with recycled materials. At age 15, Javon Havelka placed ninth in a global youth Lego competition.

Our city councillor Brian Mayes supported and funded two important Royalwood initiatives this year.

A new outdoor skating rink was established in February (and has returned this winter) thanks to the efforts of residents Dave and Jody McMullin. In September, Glen Cottick led the Million Tree Challenge with more than 200 trees planted at Fountainview Park.

Sometimes our personal pursuits are transformed into something greater.

Shannon Derkatch became a Tupperware consultant and then formed Tupperware for a Cause, where 100 per cent of her commission is donated to a different organization each month.

Omena Babalola participated in the Green Action Centre’s expanded commuter challenge. A nationally ranked masters-level athlete, she added a nightly seven-to-10 kilometre walk to her home fitness routine and encouraged friends to join her, discovering the Bois-des-esprits in the process.

2021 marked my 10-year anniversary writing this column. Thank you to my husband for his ongoing support. I am so grateful to Royalwood residents and the people and organizations involved in our neighbourhood for their participation and to my editor, John Kendle.

Everyone has a story to share and staying connected is how we will move forward. Please contact me by e-mail at with your feedback and ideas.

Wishing you and your loved ones good health and much happiness. May your days be merry and bright.

Tanya Misseghers is a community correspondent for Royalwood.

Tanya Misseghers

Tanya Misseghers
Royalwood community correspondent

Tanya Misseghers is a community correspondent for Royalwood.

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