Will Mayor Williams Walk or Run?

Mayor John Williams, Quinte West, kicks-off a previous Half Marathon

The word is, the Mayor will walk, this April 27th after he delivers his last oration to kick-off the annual Half  Marathon in support of Trenton Memorial Hospital. The Half Marathon event is purported to be highly esteemed by the Mayor.

“We have to raise over $750,000 this year for priority medical equipment like telemetry that monitors cardiac patients, operating room equipment, ultra-sound for ophthalmology. We need a camera for cervical cancer screening. We need a glidescope to open the airways…”, Wendy Warner, Executive Director, Trenton Memorial Hospital Foundation, lists ex-temporally. “The government does not finance equipment; only operations in hospitals”, she explains regarding the Foundation’s unrelenting quest to raise funds. Clearly, Warner’s work is “life or death”, even if she does not find herself in the surgical theatre.

In the political race, Mayor Williams will not run again; it is expected he will be in office until Election Day,  October 27th, 2014. Stay-tuned for QuinteALIVE’s live fireside chat with this successful Mayor about the past, the present and the future to be aired later this month.

Quinte West Healthy Half Marathon in support of the Trenton Memorial Hospital offers something for everyone “sprinters to shufflers”. Choose from a schedule that suits your physical form:

HALF MARATHON SCHEDULE – April 27, 2014

8:00 AM – Registration opens (for those not already registered on-line)
8:45 AM – Mayoral address
9:00 AM – Half Marathon Starts
9:30 AM – 10K Walk OR Run Starts
10:00 AM – 5K Run OR Walk Starts
10:00 AM – Hospital Mile Starts (a mile with no competition, bring your friendly dog, children, wheelchair friendly. The Mayor will be heading this leg of the Half Marathon.)

Route begins and ends at City Hall parking lot.

2013 Half Marathon Start at Quinte West City Hall

PLEDGE AWARDS TO TOP EARNERS:

1st place: 2 tickets to Justin Timberlake concert with overnight accommodation in Ottawa from Williams Hotel

2nd Place: Running shoes from Tri & Run Sports

3rd place: 6 month membership to the YMCA Trenton

 

RACE TO REGISTER:

The first 200 participants who register before Friday, April 18th, 2014 will receive a Race Kit/T-Shirt.
Race kits will be available for pick up on:
Friday April 25th after 12:00pm noon at City Hall,
Saturday April 26th at Tri & Run Sports from 10:00am until 3:00pm
Sunday April 27th 7:30am on site at registration table

MARATHON4FOR MORE DETAILS AND TO REGISTER GO TO:

http://raceroster.com/events/2014/918/quinte-west-healthy-half-marathon

 

 

QuinteALIVE delivers 800th Tweep Miracle Mug

800 MUG

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Phyllis Leavey-Gimpel – Andy Warholesque-styled image

Could’o knocked us over with a feather when no other than Quinte West’s famous songstress, Phyllis Leavey-Gimpel, and, owner of Beams Lighting, clicked the follow button on our Twitter account.

It is with great pleasure that we deliver our Miracle Mug with 800th Twitter Follower rank (Tweep) to her. When you fill the dark mug with a hot beverage the message appears. We trust one day these mugs will become collectors’ items in the history of QuinteALIVE !

Front Street success that surprised many

We celebrate our approaching second anniversary by re-posting of one our most successful videos during the reign of a hotelier, Mayor John Williams. It took a hotelier!

 

NEST : Quinte’s First LIVE Home and Reno VIDEO

We’ve just uploaded our latest, NEST, a video aimed at Quinte homeowners looking to renovate or obtain a new home. The people and businesses featured in this movie are reputable and talented, participating by invitation.

NEST gives a fresh, deep experience to homeowners beyond the usual search and text results available on the web (or even phone books). Our co-op videos get viewers acquainted with Founders, their missions, their voices and their works. We call our series “LIVE Source Guides”; they save a lot of time and we all know how little time we have these days.

Masterchef Canada airs groundbreaking episode at 8-Wing Trenton

CFB Masterchef

MasterChef Judge, Michael Bonacini, presents to 8-Wing Members the top ten participating home cooks

One of the few shows I watch and enjoy on television, Masterchef Canada (also US with Gord Ramsay) is featuring our cherished air transport base and its troops. This CTV production team and its location scouts are truly innovative. 8-Wing has been desirous for some time to get closer to the community; this is a great big spoonful in the right direction.

The episode is coming up quickly this Monday, March 10 at 8 p.m. EST on CTV. The top ten home cooks face their biggest team challenge yet at the hub of Canada’s air mobility forces.

Masterchef Canada used military field kitchens set-up at the air park of the National Air Force Museum of Canada and were assisted by 8-Wing military cooks to safely operate the field kitchens.  The teams were challenged to prepare a delicious dinner for 151 troops. They battled unfamiliar equipment, inclement weather, each other and the usual pressure test.

To know more about MasterChef Canada, please visit:  http://www.ctv.ca/MasterChefCanada.aspx

POSTSCRIPT !

This story has put our traffic through the roof, so we are adding a few more pics to satiate your appetite.

Ep8#15

8 Wing members enjoy the delicious dinner served by MasterChef Canada.

Ep8#18

8 Wing members cast their vote for their favourite team.

ABOUT 8-WING:

8 Wing / CFB Trenton is the hub of air mobility operations in Canada; it delivers supplies to the high Arctic, airlifts troops, equipment and humanitarian loads worldwide. Most personnel and equipment deployed to any destination within Canada or around the world pass through Trenton at some point. 8-Wing assets have provided ten years of continuous service in Afghanistan through its Task Force Canuck, supported the NATO missions over Libya, and recently, the humanitarian assistance mission in the Philippines.

MORE RECENT 8-WING COVERAGE:

8-Wing Captain Daniel reports on mission to the Philippines

429 Squadron and DART Go to the Philippines

8-Wing Hercules Human pull Contest

New 8-Wing Commmander, Colonel Lowthian, takes over

Outgoing Colonel Friday makes final farewell

429 Squadron, “Bisons”, change command

NEW VIDEO : HEALTHY YOU – for the health of Quinte

Today, we launch, Healthy YOU, a video that will guide citizens of this region to local, alternative solutions to prevent and battle health decline. Cancer, heart disease, organ malfunctions, malnutrition, depression, sleep depravation and pain are rabid among us. It is clear that the health status in the region (and the world) is not improving and in fact, declining.

QuinteALIVE respects the great effort made by traditional care practitioners who are time and cash strapped; but, it is time for people to take charge of their own health, seeking ALL safe measures available to them to improve and restore their health and vitality.

Visit the reputable experts in this video; they offer a watershed of knowledge and experience about the human body and its needs. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Healthy YOU is the first in a film series aimed at improving Quinte’s health. We realize it will be seen worldwide on the web; the information still applies.

Stay-tuned for Healthy YOU II, the sequel.

Quinte ALIVE Interviews DocFest Co-Chair, Gary Magwood

Gary Magwood and the indefatigable, growing DocFest team are one of the “Seven Wonders of Belleville”. Their vision and tenacity is surely but slowly establishing Belleville as a hub for film development worldwide.

This interview gives insight about the effort it took to get here.

P.S. Don’t ask us what the six others are. Our cup truly runneth over.

Local Chefs battle it out again

Savour Trophy

Trophy awaits 2014 Winner

The Chefs are poised for the perennial battle to win palates in Quinte. Yes, Savour The Chill, in Downtown Belleville is here again with 20 businesses collaborating. While the finest restaurants are participating, surprising businesses such as recently opened ladies’ fashion shop, Hello Gorgeous, haberdashery, Richard Davis, and technology shop, Plug ‘n Playland, are souping up for the event.

It is always great fun to join thousands scampering up and down Front Street to line-up at each venue and cast their ballots. A horse-drawn carriage, story time for children at the library (10:30), winter sales, free hot chocolate and coffee at DBIA offices add excitement.

WHEN-WHERE:Saturday, February 22, 2014, 10:30amDowntown Belleville

DBIA for ballots: 267 Front Street

Footnotes:
* Each sample cost $2 (far below retail)

* BRING Non-perishable food items to donate to The Gleaner’s Food Bank

AND THE WINNERS ARE:

People’s Choice : eCafe

Judges’ Choice : Sans Souci

Quinte Film : Ambush Hugs

Enjoy this Valentine’s Day ambush on Main Street. We were surprised to say the least.

Rachel Comeau, Founder of Art For Everyone, is featured in this production by QuinteALIVE.

Love a Stranger

Mrs. B's Valentines chocolates

Mrs. B’s Belgian Valentine’s Chocolates – Made Here in Brighton

The day of love is closing in quickly. Men and women in Quinte have their heart set on an amour, someone that will surely be endowed with the perfunctory chocolate, jellied confection or floral bouquet. In some cases the object of their affection may be canine or feline. Nevertheless, this expression of love is perennially expected by many at this appointed time, absence of which can trigger months of servitude by the forgetful party. So it is.

Victorian Heart Lolly 2014

Victorian Heart Lollies by Mrs. B’s

What if you reach out to a perfect stranger on this special day? What if you double your purchase, buying an additional box of chocolates or any gift on theme, including a Valentine shopping gift card? What if you venture out this Friday gifting a stranger who seems to deserve it the most, that single person, elderly widower or an exceptionally kind person serving you. Now that’s a random act of love–the clean kind.

People are buying coffee for the driver behind them at coffee shop drive-thrus. I trust this will increase this Friday and perhaps be accompanied with a Valentine donut.

This is a lonely day for many, emotions heightened by awareness of this day’s meaning. Seek these strangers out and love them–make them your Valentine, even as couple. QuinteALIVE aims to set out with goodies made locally and document the responses on film. Getting that fuzzy feeling already.

A few suggestions – local not global :
(Some are featured in this site-just enter their names in the search field)

Chocolates and confections:
Mrs. B’s (Belgian Chocolates) , Brighton 613.475.5644 (shown above)
Donini Chocolates, Belleville 613.967.2378
The Crust & Crumb Bakery, Belleville (at the Pier) 613.779.1115
Taste of Country, Belleville North 613.967.3985

Trinkets and unique gifts:
Hello Gorgeous, Downtown Belleville 613.689.3333
Boretski Gallery, Downtown Belleville 613.0070 (rare vintage items)
Wish Home Accents and Gifts, Downtown Trenton 613.392.9900
H.D. Rolf The Jeweller, Trenton 613.392.3383
La Maison d’Eva Fine Lingerie, Downtown Belleville 613.771.0333
Quinte Antiques, 521 Dundas West, Belleville 613.962.1991
The Blue House, Brighton 613.661.9596
Glamour Junkie, Downtown Belleville 613.967.4438
GBoyd Boutique, Brighton 613.475.5682
Dragonfly, Brighton 613.475.6275
GreenGables, Bloomfield 613.393.1494

A day at the spa:
Polish Day Spa, Belleville 613.969.1212
Monacoe’s, Brighton 613.475.6292

Florists:
Blossoms Flower Shop, Brighton 613.475.9991
Forget-Me-Not Florist, Trenton 613.392.3040
Thrasher’s Garden Centre, Belleville (potted orchids, azaleas, mini roses) 613.962.0690
Flowers By Dustin, Downtown Belleville 613.966.5555

Greeting Cards:
Rock Paper Scissors, Brighton 613.475.1781

For Pets:
Global Pet Foods, Trenton 613.392.9191
Love Em’s Brighton, 613.475.5544

Dr. Jim : Belleville’s Central Processing Human

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Jim Sanders guts a hard drive to show its fragile components

Injured hardware, software, platforms, pc and Mac, communications, all fire neurons in Jim Sanders’ brain circuitry from the time he rises until the time he puts it to sleep. He is known to many as “Dr. Jim”; people entrust him with their beloved gadgets whatever their affliction. There is a Dr. Jim following that finds customers hanging around the shop to visit a friend, long after recovery–this writer no less.

Sanders owns and operates Plug ‘n Playland, a computer shop on Bridge Street, Belleville; however, the store’s stock is secondary to Sanders own technological prowess. On most days you will find him salvaging data from hard-drives that have ceased to spin or changing computer screens that have gone dark; but, these are not challenges to Sanders. Spelunking corrupt software or operating systems that paralyze the initiates among us–these get his attention.

IMG_0200Sanders’ knowledge base extends to satellite products, antennas, networks and connectivity. It wasn’t long ago that he left full-time employment in this field to deal with increasing demand for tech services at the store; until then, his wife Kim ran the store and waited for him to squeeze numerous service calls into evening hours. This can be hard on the body when meals have to be skipped to meet deadlines.

This gentle, affable man is anathema to the pubescent peacocks we often find in the service side of big boxes. Invariably, the latter use a shorthand language of models, brands, technologies and acronyms, a secret code of sorts, that identifies customers who can be fleeced vs. who will not; yet, their typical hourly rate at $85 per hour is often not justified for the skill level present. On the other hand, Sanders’ depth of knowledge comes at a less daunting $55 per hour without the mumbo-jumbo. This scenario is endemic to the endless battle, small business vs. big business.

“I have all the Certificates required; but, if I don’t know something, I will find out”, Sanders qualifies.  I seldom hear such humble words from techs. Sanders just applied to become a Microsoft Registered Refurbisher with Microsoft; he expects this accreditation will be final within a few weeks.

My recent experience with Apple’s “Genius Bar” in Toronto was an experience fraught with errors (my name is apparently Kenyetta!) , misdiagnosis and service slow as molasses requiring five days of separation from my beloved Mac. I passed.

IMG_0194The Dr. Jim experience is comforting. He listens, shares probable diagnoses, in such a manner that you feel you are already in recovery. In a day or two life returns to the tip of your fingers and you re-emerge into the great vapor that is binary language and the internet.

Dr. Jim Basic Tips:
1- Do not go into hibernation or sleep when travelling with your laptop; rather, turn it off. This will extend the life of your hard drive (and your data!)
2- Scan disc for diagnostics at least once a month.
3- For PCs run virus software often. Clamwin is excellent and free.
4- Defrag often on your PC; Mac is a bit tricky. Call Jim.

How to find or reach Jim Sanders:
PLUG ‘N PLAYLAND
30 Bridge Street East
DowntownBelleville, Ontario

FREE PARKING ON FRONT STREET
Lots of parking on Pinnacle and Front St. South in front of City Hall

http://Plugnplayland.com

Facebook/PlugnPlayLand
e: admin [@] PlugnPlayLand.com

A few goodies on the shelves (BlueTooth products, car audio, video-data projectors, routers, antennas, etc…)

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Restaurant Review: A slice of New Delhi

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Beautiful Co-Owner, Emy, serving traditional Butter Chicken

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L – R : Rick Dutta and Mohan K., Co-Owners Tandoori Lounge

Rick Dutta arrived from Europe to Canada 15 years ago armed with an entrepreneurial spirit that propelled him to open a service centre on the 401 and franchise a Mr. Sub outlet in Belleville. The fruit of these projects has now been invested in the one and only full Indian Cuisine restaurant in Belleville, the Tandoori Lounge.

“You have to drive two hundred miles to get [authentic] Indian cuisine”, Dutta claims. He clarifies that there is a smaller Indian restaurant in the city, “mostly take-out”.

Tandoori has deep historic meaning in Indian Culture. The menu details the origins and meaning of tandoor, stating, “Tandoori dishes are probably among India’s most famous food internationally”; indeed, when I last visited London, U.K., I consumed a Tandoor meal.

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One of many canvases painted by Anu Dutta

Along with partner Mohan K., a seasoned restauranteur, Dutta intends to win the hearts of diners seeking adventurous fare. In fact, their entire families are engaged in the process. Rick’s wife, Anu, has painted authentic Indian art covering two walls of the restaurant. Their marriage was arranged 13 years ago; the two had only met twice before they were wed. Rick flew to New Delhi to collect his bride, a tall, serene beauty gifted with creative talent. Mohan’s wife and Co-Owner, Emy, serves with a beaming smile and hospitable aplomb. This fare is a family affair and a chance to re-connect with their New Delhi roots. The restaurant is beautifully appointed by Anu, perfect for romantic evenings or special occasions.

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Butter Chicken accompanied by Naam bread

IMG_0132My meal was preceded by the perfunctory ‘papadum’ accompanied by a delicious chutney, prepared by Chef Simon. On its heels, my favourite Indian dish arrived, “Butter Chicken” with Naam bread for the dipping. This recipe shifted from what I was accustomed to with a sweeter taste; Dutta explained that it was a Moghul version. Different regions in India express this dish differently, Dutta used Scarborough and Markham as uncanny parallels.

“Tandoori Lounge is a fusion between all all kinds of Indian foods”, Dutta explained. Motter Paneer Masala, the most popular side dish is a Northern curry; while, Bombay Aloo, is a Western delicacy. Prices range from $8.99 to $12.99 for individual dishes. I did not try the Mulligatawny soup, with regret, a staple that says a lot about the Indian cuisine one is experiencing; priced at only $3.49, it is an ideal lunch option.

IMG_0149Tandoori Lounge

Where : 366 North Front Street (enter from Bell Blvd. South) across from Quinte Mall
For reservations : 613.968.9696
On Facebook : TandooriLounge

QA Star Rating (on 5):  4

QuinteALIVE VIDEO: CAF goes to the Philippines

Every once in awhile an event occurs that galvanizes people to do great things. It was very touching to witness the passion and commitment of our Canadian Forces at 8-Wing and the DART team in assisting our friends in the Philippines in the aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda. See and hear Captain Christopher Daniel first-hand account of a mission that lasted more than a month.

Super Bowl is close and one fan is Super-Ready

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Michael Fortis donning a Super Bowl Tee Shirt poses in front of wide screen TV giveaway

Just popped into indefatigable Michael Fortis’ latest exploit, Captain George’s Fish and Chips, on the West side of the Quinte West bridge. Fortis is cooking up (and brewing up) a Super Bowl party that will surely go down as the “go to” Super Bowl event in Quinte.

Seven wide screen televisions and surround sound will air the pre-game events at 4:00 pm right up to the finish line–who knows when the clock will run out. Will the Seattle Seahawks be there? Let’s see.

A 39 inch High Def Toshiba TV donated by Rental City will be raffled off at no extra charge to those who attend. The odds are good–better than any lotto. Super Bowl Tee-shirts and Labatts caps are also being raffled. Expect the sound to be loud, spontaneous cheering and masticating no less!

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Wings and brew at Captain George’s Super Bowl party

I am partaking of the Michael’s Super Bowl Wings and I must say they are delicious–not too much batter, just the right sweet and enough meat on the bone. Wash that down with one of many Labbatt-owned beer brands and it’s a protein dinner of sorts.

To reserve your Super Bowl seats call 613.394.2888 .

“Sabbatical” now over

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Our garden

Sounds good right? “Sabaaaatical”. Time off to take a break or deploy neurons to seek new meaning; but, this is an obfuscation of the first order. Spent the last month (which is why QuinteAlive has been silent) under the tyranny of weather. All infrastructure affected by the temperature: house, car, production equipment and lastly, the human vessel.

We think ourselves Northerners of sorts; but in actuality, are we ready for the wallop of unrelenting ice storms and -36 windchill?

It’s all moot now. We have overcome. The devil loses again. And here we are writing this on yet another ugly day, the “weather man” having set us up for better weather and sun. Ha!

We’ve all become somewhat dull, talking about weather–all the time. Now QuinteAlive is back ready to spice it up, literally.

The Christmas Wave : Quinte Wishes You Well

This is our Christmas greeting on behalf of a smattering of our beloved Quinte customers. It was fun to visit so many in a few days. We missed a few hundred customers in this video Christmas card; but, we and they wish you all a tender, joyful, peaceful holiday–with or without the insolence of ice storms!

Country Singing Royalty Assemble to Support the Troops

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L – R : Wendy Bellan, Debbie McLean, Darcy Hammerton (microphone steeling his space), Brett McNaueal, Betty-Ann Perry, Michael Arthur, Lady and Old ToadGil, David Hayes

Old ToadGil from Ajax has had a heart for the troops for some time. “Toad” reached out to Country singers from across Canada to donate new, unique Christmas songs for our troops. Recently, the CD, Christmas From Home, materialized; all efforts are being made to get copies into the hands of men and women in our Canadian Forces here and abroad. Many of the performers shown above are on the CD; Anne Murray and The Good Brothers are also featured.

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CD Case, “Christmas From Home” (CLICK to enlarge

The next logical step was to hold a concert near 8-Wing. Many songs on the CD were performed last Friday evening at the Trenton Legion, by Cedarail (Wendy Bellan and David Hayes), Debbie McLean, Darcy Hammerton, Brett McNaueal, Betty-Ann Perry (also MC) and Michael Arthur. It was a treat for frozen ears present.

Brett McNaueal and Darcy Hammerton  joined Debbie McLean in performing many of the songs on her CD, Take This Heart; two songs were written by McNaueal. It was exceptional to witness these three from Quinte perform together. McNaueal is a prolific songwriter having written for Rascal Flatts. Debbie McLean’s star value is rising; no less, Darcy Hammerton’s.

LCol Tressa Home and Sqn Chief Warrant Officer, Thaddeus Poper, Maintenance 8 Squadron, and Councillor Paul Kyte were some of the dignitaries present.

ENJOY THE GALLERY BELOW – CLICK TO ENLARGE

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Darcy Hammerton and Debbie McLean

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Michael Arthur quips between sets

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L – R : Darcy Hammerton, Debbie McLean, Brett McNaueal

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Betty-Ann Perry performing with Michael Arthur

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Cedarail’s, Wendy Bellan and David Hayes

Trenton Unveils Epic Mural, Melts Hearts of Freezing Crowd

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The A-Team in front of the Mosaic Mural. L to R : Artist, Charles Street, Co-Chair, Wendy Ouellette, Susan Shoniker, Co-Chair, Dave Shoniker

“At least it isn’t raining!”, we shivering subjects agreed awaiting to see ourselves, our friends, our families, our dignitaries, our places and ancestors on this monumental canvas, Our Past Our Present Community Mosaic Mural.  Painstakingly, Charles Street, Dave Shoniker and Wendy Ouellette collected and assembled over 4,000 images depicting the stuff that Trenton AKA Quinte West is made of. This new landmark is located on the West side of the Downtown Trenton bridge, adjacent to Captain George’s Fish and Chips.

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Keira Rose O’Malley aided by her father cut cord to release veil. Artist Charles Street looks on.

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Mayor John Williams addresses crowd. Background right: Dave Shoniker and Wendy Ouellette. Extreme left: Hugh O’Neil.

The ribbon was cut by youngster, Keira Rose O’Malley, at precisely 11:00 am, following orations from Mayor John Williams, Dave Shoniker and Charles Street. It was extraordinary that the Mayor showed up having been ill for three weeks; this project was clearly special to him as it was for all of us. QuinteALIVE spotted Paul Whitley and Hugh O’Neil of Highway of Heroes renown in the crowd.

ABOUT THE TRENTON MOSAIC MURAL

It all started in Wendy Ouellette’s head. She contacted Dave Shoniker, a man who gives propulsion to community projects. Then Shoniker called Charles Street on May 20, 2012, and a deal was struck.  Charles had created a similar project in the  his hometown, Prescott, namely “The People’s Place”.

Street has been in the outdoor signage business for 30 years; so, he is adept at creating art that withstands the elements. The mural is printed on vinyl, mounted on commercial signboard and laminated with Vandal Guard. UV filters slow the fading that occurs over time giving the mural a vivid life of at least 20 years.

The mural unveiled this morning is perhaps the second largest in Canada at 64 feet wide, 14 feet high; the largest is in Port Carling (the Muskokas). Street would not share the secret software recipe that brought it all together; but, clearly a great deal of scanning and Photoshopping occurred.

No citizen of the Quinte region is exempt from the experience of finding someone they know; this area is perhaps only two degrees of separation.

Enjoy the gallery below. CLICK TO ENLARGE

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Actual images of our fallen men and women in Afghanistan, “Portraits of Honour”.

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Small section showing all the Mayors including Mayor John Williams, Fort Kente and a charcoal cat–a medley to say the least!

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Crowd gets first look at Trenton’s Community Mosaic Mural

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Very pleased Dave Shoniker addressing the crowd. And so he should be.

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Artist Charles Street addresses crowd before unveiling.

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Dynamic duo: Dave Shoniker and Wendy Ouellette before unveiling.

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Major Sponsor, Captain George’s, point at their images on wall. L to R : Tammy, Teresa and Michael Fortis, Owner.

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“If I fall over, catch me”, the Mayor warned opening his address. Despite his illness which manifests in vertigo and the burning cold, he soldiered on to support his friends and outstanding citizens, Wendy Ouellette and Dave Shoniker.

Gifting our Tweeps : Congratulations Mark Whalen our 600th !

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QuinteALIVE Mug on left is dark until a hot drink is poured as seen on the right. Watching the change is great fun.

This is no regular mug. Dark on the outer surface–it lights up quickly and gradually to reveal our brand and our Tweeps ranking! This one goes to Mark Whalen @BidDaddyWhalen of Belleville–true blue Belleville Bulls fan.

Our 700th Tweep is coming up–the mug is ready to go out the door.

Where to get this wondermug? Ray and Jim’s, Front Street, Downtown Belleville. Ask for Leonie or Christian. Or follow QuinteALIVE and see if you land on a mug!

Business Magnate Overcomes Depression Through Hard Work

AUT_0052In this authorized autobiography, penned by Orland French, published by Maurice Rollins himself, Rollins appears to tell all. His most surprising revelation, clinical depression starting in his teens and leading to shock treatments; despite this, he built a company of scale with assets reaching across the world.

Rollins was born at 7:20 am, May 25, 1927, on a wooden kitchen table in Tweed. Is this why he begins each day at around the same time–at 86 years of age? (Our DNA seems to have memory.)

To say the man works hard is an understatement. I met him at 5:00 pm last Friday in his office; there was no apparent rush to pack-up and cease work as is customary in the region. In fact, we were the stragglers in his office building, Century Place, in the heart of Belleville. Perhaps, as he writes, “[the work suppresses depression]“; I know myself, I fight the blues on occasion by “doing something physical”.

Rollins is selling this self-published book for $39.88, commemorating the price inclusive of 88 cents for a room at The Journey’s End, the paradigm-setting motel chain he founded in 1978.

All proceeds from the book go to mental health organizations dealing with depression. You can purchase it at Canadian Mental Health, Octavia Street (Old St. Mary’s school), Belleville. Makes for a nice, page-turning Christmas gift.

The Great Wall of Quinte Unveils this Saturday

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CLICK TO ENLARGE

Actually, its real name dubbed by the Trent Port Historical Society is, “Trent Port Photo Mosaic Mural“. An arduous year collecting over 3,500 photographs has readied the new wall mural for unveiling this Saturday, November 23rd, 11:00 am.  The mural designed by Charles Street measures a whopping 64 feet by 12 feet and will be on the east wall of the Community Policing building, 29 Dundas Street West.

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Event will take place in Captain George’s Fish and Chips parking lot

As you approach the wall from the end of the Veteran’s Skyway bridge, the scene will include a giant movie screen, a Harvard aeroplane, the iconic water tower at 8-Wing Trenton and a map of Trenton; but, walk up close to the wall and the images you see are thousands of photographs submitted by citizens of Quinte West and the surrounding area.  The history of Quinte West has been captured in this mural, a new concept in outdoor art.

Everyone is invited to view the mural and meet its creators, Wendy Ouellette and Dave Shoniker. Enjoy refreshments at 1:00pm at Trenton Town Hall, 1861-55 King Street–or a great lunch a Captain George’s (there is a discount for those attend the event.)

429 Squadron and DART puddle-jump to the Philippines

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Captain Sean Bassett, Pilot CC-177 Globemaster III, moments before take-off

“It’s my first time crossing the Pacific. Yes, I am excited”, exclaimed Captain Sean Bassett, pilot of the CC-177 Globemaster III, seated in the cockpit, awaiting take-off. It will be a 25-hour journey first landing in Comox, a second stop overseas and a third, arriving in Ilo Ilo, Philippines. The much needed cargo will assist victims of  typhoon “Yolanda”, the name given by Philippinos–not Haiyan as it is commonly referred to in the Western World.

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Lieutenant-Colonel Jean Maisonneuve looks down from the cockpit

Moments ago the third party from DART (Disaster Assistance Response Team) deployed from CFB Trenton; two other parties deployed on separate occasions this week bringing the number of Canadian troops in the Philippines to approximately two hundred. Major-General James Ferron, 8-Wing Commander David Lowthian and Chief Warrant Officer Sandor Gyuk among other dignitaries attended as the 429 (Transport) Squadron and a team of eight from DART boarded the Globemaster at 5:00 pm today.

Lieutenant-Colonel Jean Maisonneuve and Chief Warrant Officer Bryan Pierce, 429 Squadron, are on-board heading this critical humanitarian operation.

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Rough terrain truck containing water purification system aboard the CC-177 Globemaster III

The key passenger on this cargo plane is a rough terrain truck containing celebrated equipment, ROWPU (reverse osmosis water purification system). Many present glowed about its performance in transforming the most unpotable water into life-saving, clean water.

DART’s objectives are primary medical care, engineering help and production of safe drinking water–all three have now been activated by our Canadian Forces in Operation RENAISSANCE 13-1 toward the Philippines.

4.3 million people have been affected by typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) when it pummeled the Philippines on November 8th. The dead remain to be counted; estimates are far above the official numbers.

Stay-tuned for updates and more details on our Canadian Forces in the Philippines.

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CC-177 Globemaster III awaits take-off bound for the Philippines, November 15, 2013.

Enough with the bad news already!!

Bad News pic

When are the media going to get that putting people on a steady diet of arrests, crimes, fires, threats, deaths, government squabbles kills the human spirit? People say, “[the bad news] drives audiences”. There is no doubt people are galvanized by their fears; it’s bred in the bone. This penchant take its toll on people, affecting behavior and sleep. There is nothing more inane than watching the 11 o’clock news to interrupt sleep.

In the absence of anything else in the media, audiences resort to what is served. There are alternatives, cheerful movies, good books, pleasant magazines, blogs, a board game; but, again the magnetic pull of the macabre is strong. Join the dark news to darker day-time hours, winds, cold–you have people reaching for the mood-enhancers or that extra drink.

This is why we are taking QuinteALIVE to the next level.

A NEW ON-LINE MAG FOR QUINTE

QuinteALIVE.com will be the new on-line magazine for the region. We have already signed 6 expert columnists–with another 6 planned. We will not feature crimes, calamities and deaths. QuinteALIVE will celebrate our incredible citizens, our successes, our places, our events, our talent, our stuff, etc… We are working feverishly toward the final web design and coding, trusting we will go live before the holidays! Our BlogSite here has been widely received; so, we can only imagine how well the mag will do!

Remembering Canadian Forces in Brazil

Remembrance Day Memorial wreaths are weighted down by the cold rain in Brighton; yet, candles remain bright around monuments in Trenton. It has been a horrible day to remember our fallen. If we travel in our hearts to Natal, Brazil, a drier, warmer experience may uplift.

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Over 40 members of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) from 436 (Transport) Squadron out of 8 Wing Trenton, 3 Wing Bagotville, and 1 Canadian Air Division, as well as the Canadian Army Advanced Warfare Centre, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI) and the 3rd Battalion of The Royal Canadian Regiment (3 RCR), who are currently deployed in Brazil, paused in a solemn act of Remembrance at the Brazilian Air Base in Natal on November 11.

“Today is a solemn moment for all us,” said Lieutenant-Colonel (LCol) Mark Goulden, Commanding Officer of 436 Squadron and the RCAF Detachment Commander in Brazil. “We remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in conflicts and their sacrifices shall never be forgotten.”

NADuring the simple ceremony held at the aircraft maintenance hangar, Chief Warrant Officer (CWO) Stuart Preston from 436 Squadron played “The Last Post” and the poem “In Flanders Fields” was solemnly recited.

“The two-minute silence gave us the opportunity to Remember those who came before us,” said CWO Preston. “This day is meaningful and important for all of us.”

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ABOUT RCAF IN NATAL

The RCAF, with two of its CC-130J Hercules aircraft, is currently participating in CRUZEX FLIGHT 13, a key Latin American multinational exercise, from 2-15 November 2013 in Natal, Brazil, along with allies from Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Uruguay, U.S.A., and Venezuela.

“Wherever we go to carry the load, we will Remember them,” said LCol Goulden.

NEW VIDEO : Quinte’s Lighting Songstress

For many of us who know and love Phyllis Leavey-Gimpel this video is a special treat. Yes, it features the most beautiful lighting selection in the region; but, also one of the most beautiful voices in the region–Phyllis’ own, singing her own song, “I keep Holdin’ On“.

Before Phyllis became a lighting impresario, launching Beams Lighting in trendy downtown Trenton, she graced many stages as Tara Leavey. Her voice remains intact today. There is much hidden talent in our region. Not anymore… Enjoy!

BTW : The video was produced by QuinteALIVE !

When gluten attacks : Defensive moves for Quinte

Cupcakes gluten storyStatistics report, 40% of the American public suffers from gluten sensitivity–that’s 1 in 3 individuals! It seems over 50 years ago the protein in wheat was 5% gluten ; now the tally is estimated at close to 90%.

What is gluten you ask? It is a protein found in wheat, oats, rye, barley, and other grains related to wheat. It is also hiding in salad dressing, soups, yogurts, ice cream–the list is endless. Gluten purportedly hastens and lowers costs of production in food products. Gluten intolerance is a tepid descriptor for this intruder which can manifest in long-term malnutrition and as a result, myriad diseases; it is often referred to as Celiac Disease.

Some of the early signs are headaches, sore stomach, rapid weight loss (which is actually wasting!). Other symptoms include lethargy, loss of appetite, diarrhea, stools that are bulky, pale, floating or horrendously smelly, abdominal pain or distension, weakness, and even anemia.

Advanced signs include diseases triggered by continued lack of critical nutrients, vitamins, enzymes, minerals, that are flushed out of the digestive system by the destruction of the mucous membranes in the wall of the intestines. Multiple Sclerosis is also linked to gluten intolerance. In my opinion, no one is tolerant of gluten; it is just a matter of time until multiple signs erupt.

LOCAL DISCUSSION

I was in an animated discussion today with Clarence and Lorraine, owners at the revitalized Freshco in Trenton, along with Mario from Sobey’s head office; this is clearly a subject of interest to all. There are two “Gluten Free” sections in the store, frozen and open shelf.

The Loblaw banner dedicated an entire page to Gluten-Free products in their flyer this weekend. The heat is turning up. “We are always expanding our gluten-free aisle [by demand]“, John Smiley, owner of The Independent in Trenton exclaimed as he gave me a tour. The baker corroborated people often ask for directions to the gluten aisle.

Since I launched my own crusade a week ago, it seems everyone has a gluten story related to their own health or a close relative.

Food manufacturers must step up to the plate, reducing the percentage of gluten in their products before people develop illnesses en masse. Full disclosure of gluten content must be on the ingredient list.

Tim Horton’s offers one gluten-free bite sized product near its cash; but, that’s all. Options are too scant in cafes and restaurants, a disproportionate response to the need.

SO HOW CAN YOU TEST IF THIS IS THE CAUSE OF YOUR FAILING HEALTH?

Get off gluten for at least a week; that means, no more wheat products, rye, oats, barley and other close relatives. You will be restricted to brown rice, millet and quinoa; organic corn is good too. You can get a blood test; elevated anti-gliadin antibodies will show up in a blood sample

If the headaches vanish, the abdominal pain vanishes, or a number of symptoms–voila! Begin taking supplements so you can replace the lost nutrients in your body; these deficiencies will appear in full blood work. As long as you continue consuming gluten you will likely not absorb supplements unless you can bypass the digestive system with injections and perhaps, sub-lingual forms.

Until food manufacturers cease using this protein to this degree, stay clear from their products. Even the slightest consumption will trigger symptoms again; you must be very careful in restaurants where gluten is ever-present.

RELATED DISEASES

According to researcher Dr. Kenneth Fine, M. D., certain populations are at greater risk for developing gluten sensitivity.  Gluten Sensitivity may occur in 1 out of every 2 people with these conditions:

  • Microscopic colitis
  • Relatives of gluten-sensitive individuals
  • Gluten-sensitive individuals 1 year after treatment
  • Chronic diarrhea of unknown origin
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Gastroesophageal reflux disease
  • Hepatitis C
  • Autoimmune liver disease
  • Other causes of chronic liver disease
  • Dermatitis herpetiformis
  • Diabetes mellitus, type 1
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Lupus
  • Scleroderma
  • Autoimmune thyroid disease
  • Dermatomyositis
  • Psoriasis
  • Any autoimmune syndrome
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Asthma
  • AIDS
  • Osteoporosis
  • Iron deficiency
  • Short stature in children
  • Down’s syndrome
  • Mothers of kids with neural tube defects
  • Female infertility
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Cerebellar ataxia
  • Seizure disorders
  • Psychiatric disorders
  • Depression
  • Alcoholism
  • Autism
  • ADHD/ADD

THE PROGNOSIS

This writer has been off gluten for an entire week; migraines and pain are gone. A number of life threatening symptoms will probably also pass–all caused by frequently diagnosed malnutrition. Many years with a number of conditions, doctors’ visits, biopsies, ambulance rides… No one ever mentioned gluten in my low nutrient levels. Now, maybe I’ll put some meat back on my bones! I welcome it.

This topic is so complex, I plan to write about it in a series. I am just scratching the surface. Social media is two-way; so weigh in with your experiences.

READ THIS amazing story written by Catherine Guthrie in 2010. This rabbit hole is deep.

Creepiest man seen at Quinte Mall

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You thought you’d see a man in a Halloween outfit didn’t you? Meet John Powers, retired Police Officer from Kitchener, known as “The Bug Man” and also bug showman for Orkin Canada, a leading pest control corporation. Powers has  been researching butterflies for 49 years, an entomologist of sorts since he was 11 years old.

Powers is anything but certainly not creepy. He adroitly and vividly recounted details of each insect, its origin, lifespan and environment, all presented under glass at, “The Incredible World of Bugs” exhibit sponsored by Orkin. The presentation I received in the short time we had together was worthy of a bigger stage; in fact, he has been featured on the Discovery Channel and in the National Geographic.

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Goliath Beetles named after their size

Powers has presented his butterfly creations to hundreds of public figures including President Reagan, Pope John Paul II, Hulk Hogan and Mohammed Ali. He founded Wings of Paradise, a butterfly conservatory, and, The Naturium Butterfly Farm, both located in Breslau, Ontario. (I am so tempted to say he has “The Butterfly Effect” having reached so far; but, that would be cheezy.)

You must not miss Powers’ exhibit at the mall; it is simply breathtaking. Time is slipping as the exhibit ends Saturday. The mounted displays are excellent; the creatures pinned within are of epic scale. We, in Canada, have no idea what “insect” means in Indonesia, the Amazon and Africa. This exhibit features, scorpions, tarantulas, bees, wasps, butterflies, moths, beetles, stick (camouflaged) bugs and praying mantus from the world over.

Enjoy the gallery below; but, there is no replacing being there. These are the easiest on the eye; also some of rarest creatures on the planet.

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Rarest butterfly in the world, half male, half female.

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Largest moth in the world. Note the Guinness Certificate.

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The wings of these Jewel Beetles are truly sold as jewels. (OffTheHook in Trenton carries them)

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The Orkin show van. Features one of Powers’ beetles.

Christmas CD for the Troops : 45 Canadian Artists collaborate

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Event Poster

The Lady and Oldtoad Gil, a mysterious couple that hails from Pickering and collaborate as music producers are up to nothing but good. For almost two years, they have been recruiting artists to donate a new song each to be included on a “Support the Troops” Christmas CD. The CD will be distributed free of charge to men and women in our Canadian Forces both, at home and abroad. This year marks the first ever 2 CD set of all original songs, written and performed by Canadian Artists to bring a bit of “Home” to our troops during the Holiday season.

These CDs are distributed free of charge, to troops serving all around the world, to those recovering in military hospitals and to the loved ones of those serving their country. Last year included such artists as Jason McCoy, Clayton Bellamy and Valdy.

Five artists from our area have been chosen to take part in this special project:  Debbie McLean, Michael Arthur, Cedarail (David Hayes and Wendy Bellan), and Betty Ann and Dane Perry.

A LOCAL KICK-STARTER – QUINTE ALIVE’S TOP-RATED TROOP SUPPORT EVENT OF 2013

Oldtoad Gil and these local artists are fundraising for the Legion by performing the CD songs at the Trenton Legion.  The Lady and Oldtoad Gil will present a CD to a senior representative from CFB Trenton.

To get advance tickets:  Christmas From Home Advance tickets will be available at the Sunlife Financial Office in Trenton, 459 Dundas Street West. Cost $5.00 per person. QuinteALIVE gives this event ***** (five stars).

Location/Date: Trenton Legion, November 22, 2013, 7:00pm $5.00 per person.

Most powerful food on the planet made here in Quinte

“Enter at your own risk”, a grocery manager said to me years ago as we carried on a heated discussion on the quality of food. His declaration has never left me.

There are means to avoid assembly line, murdered food. You may be required to make a few more trips; but, the good news is, powerful food that can restore nutrients to your body, are nearby. Arresting nutritional deficiency and myriad diseases that it triggers must be top of everyone’s to-do-list–not their bucket list.

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Dennis Barker, Founder, BioEssential Botanicals, Stirling

I heard through the grapevine of Dennis Barker and his success in garnering contracts around the world including China. My ears perked.

Barker is Founder of BioEssential, a company established 25 years ago in Stirling; an office in Hong Kong has also been added to world operations.

The centric idea is that nutrition is enhanced through germination of seeds, grains and pulses–the research proves it. It has to be just right–stopped at the right moment and voila! you are at the apex of the sprouts’ nutritional value. BioEssentials was the first in the world to sprout and dehydrate flax and chia seeds.

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Three of many biolive blends.

Under the brand name, biolive, dozens of attractive packages containing various blends of sprouted chia seeds, GABA rice, crimson lentils, flax, broccoli seeds promise an unprecedented increase in nutrients absorbable to the human body:

  • Vitamin increase as much as 1000%
  • Enzymes increase as much as 800%
  • Antioxidants as much as 100%
  • Soluble fibre, sterols and stanols all increased
  • Most Omega3 you can get in one blend
  • Best free radical scavenger
  • Too much to list here

Some packages are complete meals; others can be served raw as a topping on almost any dish. I have been consuming these products for over three weeks now; my energy has increased, my complexion has improved–the results are myriad.

Barker markets mostly to corporations in bulk, empowering their house brands. The packages you see herein are for walk-in customers at the Stirling plant.

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Plant in Stirling, Ontario

After completing a plant tour, I was showered with a generous “care-package”; I covet them as gold bars in my kitchen. I gift friends and clients who have an affinity for good food with a package and they cling to it as though I had given them the fountain of youth. Not too far from the truth.

CONTACT BIOESSENTIALS:

438 West Front StreetStirling, Ontario CANADA K0K 3E0Tel: 613.395.6300

You who are without funding, cast to First Stone

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First Stone partners in action (image dramatized)

I spent a few hours with a gaggle of well-heeled men in Picton, the lawyer among them, a woman. It was, for the sake of brevity, a “Dragon’s Den” styled event; but, kinder, gentler.

Many are unaware that in our midst, a venture funding corporation, First Stone Venture Partners, is churning business plans and their presenters faster than I have witnessed on Bay Street, Wall Street or the Googleplex.  The former named,  Prince Edward County Innovation Centre, “was a pilot”, Chairman, Conrad Guziewicz exhales into the aether, multi-directional discussions flying across the board room table.

Then, respite. Everyone is called to a buffet of Pakistani fare prepared locally, to refuel for the next flight. It was as delicious as the experience.

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Shannon Pitt and Erik Rubadeau, Co-Founders, yeeboo digital.

Twenty minutes later, the frenzy begins once again, new staging, new presenters, PowerPoint in full regalia. New technologies are presented with youthful enthusiasm, feverishly challenged by the seasoned elders within. The chosen few end up with a Term Sheet (the initial offering), the chance to become millionaires; this is the quotidian routine at First Stone.

On the heels of robo-interviewing, I was taken for a tour by Margo Langford, Attorney-in-Chief, through the complex. I witnessed many of the various businesses incubating within:  procurement dealer software, device chargers for entertainment venues, marketing platforms for non-profits, etc… I even met Milo the dog.

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Staircases attest to playfulness at FSVP. Note the blowfish mobile.

I almost missed meeting a few entrepreneurs, who were scouting for apartments in Picton. First Stone is great for local industry; it brings in talent from across Canada for extended stays while they “accelerate” their business ideas here in PEC.

First Stone claims a 30% success rate, 20 points higher than the usual 10%. The group is rich in experience; but, there is this ability, rare in venture capitalists, an ability to listen, stay still and focus. Often venture folks have the attention span of a gnat (oh, I’m gonna get emails from this!), greed often interrupting common sense.

I will continue to write about First Stone, its evolution, its members and its investments. This is just to clear the palate. Stay-tuned for the next course.

You might enjoy my interview of Guziewicz weeks ago.

Mrs. B. sweet-talking her way into hearts and palates

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Lori Boychuk, Founder Mrs. B’s and Bellissima, holding a chocolate apple. Note the exceptional cows on the left.

Everytime I meet  Lori Boychuk, the spring in her step is greater. Her creativity is greater. Her production is greater. This creative individual is a force to recognize. I understand she has been nominated by the combined Chambers in the region for an Award of Recognition–how smart they are.

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Chocolate snowmen lined-up in formation on trays to fill Christmas orders

Mrs. B. is building a Belgian chocolate mini-empire that serves the public in its well-appointed shop in Brighton; but, also serves corporate customers under the Bellissima brand. Her confections are all made from scratch in the rented operations/kitchen located at Brighton’s Industrial Park.

Continuous testing of fillings and chocolate creations in its kitchens ensure the uniqueness of its product line. One taste establishes the quality of every piece–I have partaken!

At the moment Lori has created Christmas hippos with presents in their bellies including chocolate coloured butterflies and an extra one to seal their mouths. “You know the Christmas Hippo song don’t you?”, Lori asks.

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Thanksgiving cupcakes making their way to the store today.

I wonder how long the operations can be sustained in the current kitchens given the demand for her creations.

I left with a bag filled with ginger chocolates and chocolate pretzels which I shared with friends later. I chose a thanksgiving cupcake to lift the spirit of a dear customer and friend; evidently, anything “Mrs. B.” is a smile generator.

Perhaps Mrs. B. will soon make a chocolate crown replete with colored gems to place on her head.

Dr. Camera heals with a bedside manner

Palau fan photo

Jeff and Debbie Evoy, Palau, Philippines – 2009

“Jeff can do anything”, Debbie Evoy exclaimed about husband, Jeff, standing ten feet away, his gaze deep into the bowels of a professional camera. The couple’s history as owners of Japan Camera in Belleville now counts over 32 years; but, the cadence in all their interactions shows no sign of fatigue.

AUT_0210You could call Jeff Evoy, “Dr. Camera”. He intakes cameras of all types and makes for day-surgery on any given day. The angst their owners experience as they drop them off is understood by Evoy; many draw a livelihood from their cameras and can barely spare a day without them. Evoy resonates their emotions comfortingly, calmly; all agree, Evoy has a good “bedside manner”. You will invariably find Evoy in the surgical theatre, near the front entrance, while Debbie keeps the store and its many services flowing with energy.

The Evoys are not mere retailers; they offer a depth to their craft unparalleled in the region. The couple travels on a yearly basis to various coral reefs with underwater photography on the itinerary; this widens the scope of their service. The Evoys are planning to build a studio in the store’s rear space, where Jeff will deliver courses to the creatives among us. The studio would provide an ideal opportunity to rent out scarce professional studio space. Evoy is looking to spread his wings further and re-enter the creative domain, as commercial photographer.

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Debbie and Jeff Evoy

The Evoys are an interesting couple each exhibiting a sharp wit and aplomb with all who enter their store. In one year, 1988, Jeff bought the store and married Debbie, three months after their first encounter; clearly, it was the beginning of a great journey.

In the early days, Jeff Evoy worked for Irene Roluf’s camera shop downtown. He was lured away by Japan Camera executives with a lucrative offer and a chance to launch the technological marvel of the day in Belleville, “One Hour Photo”. Evoy managed Japan Camera store at the Quinte Mall for seven years when the opportunity to purchase the store franchise arose; he moved from employee to employer status overnight. The store has since relocated to Bell Front Centre across the street.

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Four digital photo kiosks in-store – for CDs, DVDs, Jump Drives & Memory Cards

The unforeseeable occurred eight years ago, an event that could have spelled the end for Evoy; the Franchisor, Japan Camera, went into receivership. Evoy led a battle to form a national Board of Directors to acquire its intellectual property i.e. the banner from the Trustee.

Frankly, I wonder if the store should be re-branded, “Jeff’s Camera Centre” (Henry’s, after his namesake is the leader in Toronto). Could it be time to shake the remnants of a brand that got its thrust from One-Hour Photo?

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View from Bell Blvd.

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Telescopes featured at storefront

TO FIND JEFF AND DEBBIE:
Japan Camera Centre: Bell Front Centre, 366 North Front St., Belleville, Ontario
Tel: 613.966.5056
Site: JapanCamera.com

Day 1 at Freshco

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Lorraine Blakely welcoming customers

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Eastern view and entrance

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The service promise boldly displayed

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View from river side

Bonne chance Lorraine and Clarence! Looks like a good start.

See our story below, October 2, for details.

7:59 am, October 3 : one more jewel to Quinte West Crown

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The typical outdoor design similar to current in Trenton.

QuinteALIVE was invited in with friends and family the night before the big reveal. Lorraine and Clarence Blakely, Franchisees, will be greeting Sobeys executives, dignitaries and customers before the doors open at 8:00 am. The ribbon cutting is at 7:59 am we are told.

It is to say the least quite a transformation. The former dog-eared walls, floors, doors are gone; enter pristeen, superbly  merchandised aisles. The produce is sacrosanct in the context of “fresh” and Freshco makes the cut by our inspection.

The lowest price is “guaranteed” on its signage; but only if, “[you can show a competing flyer or a near real time photo on your digital device"], Clarence clarified. It is an asterisk of sorts; but, it is pretty standard in the retail race. The price point is markedly lower than its previous banner, Price Chopper. The end aisles feature many $1.00 items from crackers to navy beans. A “power aisle” features top brands at deep discounts.

The decor is counter-intuitive with large photos of food in black and white, in keeping with the minimalist streamlining design and color palette of black, white/silver and chartreuse (yellow green). A smattering of bright pink signs stating, “Now Even Cheaper”, dress every aisle and are unmissable to the eyes.

I visited upon Metro, the competition at the other side of the bridge, for a comment. The apprehension in the senior manager’s tone was palpable; however, he ventured to comment on Freshco’s attractiveness. Rumours are that it will transform into a Food Basics banner, competing with Freshco’s market head-on.

THE DOWNSIDE

One reservation I have is the lack of organics, a fast-growing segment, widely adopted by all Loblaw banners, The Independent and No Frills. Large Loblaw delivery trailers feature the famed “Organics” brand. At No Frills you can find sufficient organic products at reasonable price points from produce to cereal. This is an important choice for many in choosing a grocer.

Personally, I would not buy Froot Loops or a frozen dinner if I could get three boxes for a penny; these types of foods are devoid of nutrients and the root cause of nutritional deficiencies and diseases when consumed regularly. Much of the world yearns to return to REAL, unfooled-around-with food.

I politely held my tongue when my ten years of research on foods and diseases were reduced to ignorance in regard to organic foods i.e. it is a hoax of sorts and I am being duped. Ultimately organics means no pesticides, herbicides and GMO. Granted there are some brands that fudge about their purity; but, most are passionate about returning real nutrition to food.  Any attempt to fool customers is quickly foiled in the alternative channels. There are organic rules, certifications and all are closely monitored. Some brands are organic and cannot afford the certification; they often fall back on the “Natural” classification. The only real food is organic; the rest is processed, pasteurized, synthetically replenished. The toll on human health is showing especially here in Quinte. Many doctors call the path from Trenton to Belleville, “The cancer corridor”.

Notwithstanding the above, I did not see local food, produce from Ontario, products from Quinte farmers and local manufacturers. There may be some; but, this is not prevalent in the store. I did however spot gluten-free products here and there–that’s good. Excessive gluten found in most processed food is also a serious cause of malabsorption.

There is no doubt that Lorraine and Clarence are affable hosts and the City is blessed by their hard work. I just hope they invest in a swelling audience that share a passion for REAL, healthy, pure food.

We all need to start talking about food and nutrition; too many people are suffering for lack of it–heart disease, obesity, arthritis, diabetes, anemia, tooth decay, IBS, the list is endless…

Quinte West Attracts Yet Another Business

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Maged Soliman, one of three partners, Canadian Drug Mart

Three weeks ago Canadian Drug Mart (CDM) opened its doors in Trenton, across the street from Shoppers Drug Mart. John Attia, Maged Soliman and Mark Attia of Greater Toronto partnered up in developing this fledgling chain. Guelph was the first market for the chain; their search  revealed Trenton as a viable the second market.

AUT_0152The official opening is scheduled for October 7; Mayor Williams will “cut the ribbon” at noon.

“Our goal is to better serve communities”, says Soliman, “we look for markets that are underserved.” Chief in CDM’s service promise is shorter wait times, estimated at five minutes.

AUT_0160This is a full-service pharmacy with all medications available, over the counter products, supplements and consultation. The real attractant is the savings especially for seniors where co-payments are waived and the discounts on non-prescription products.

Soliman is an affable, gentle pharmacist; this will bode well for people who are ill and stressed. Cancer has turned its ugly head in this region but also depression as reports Soliman.

Soon, homeopathic products will arrive to CDM’s shelves. This pharmacy is truly integrated able to meet many needs.

NOTE: CDM is offering discounts for QuinteALIVE–see our QA DEALS tab above.

Urgent Help for Sweet Rosie

AUT_0024Sweet Rosie has cooked and served breakfast and lunch for eons to a loyal customer base at “The Hilltop” on Dundas West for eons. A fire burned through the establishment (and the whole strip mall) and robbed her of her livelihood for the entire summer.

She opens tomorrow with a broken heart and with a financial deficit. The joy has left her gait and my heart breaks to see her this way.

FRIENDS OF ROSIE! Show up in droves for her delicious meals, leave a big tip to help her out and if your heart moves you, donate all you can to get her out of the hole. Let’s get our Rosie back! And share this story eveywhere you can, on-line and off-line.

We must take care of our own, especially people like Rosie.

Show up at : 391 Dundas Street West, Trenton or call  (613) 392-2823

Unusual campaign takes off

I count JPG

 

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L – R : Gina Hendrick, Jeff Hohenkerk and Sharon Adams

An unusual but worthy campaign kicked off on September 25th with a BBQ in the parking lot of Trenton Memorial Hospital. This campaign is by employees raising funds for employees; this idea was visited upon them in another similar event in 2006.

“Each and every day the employees at TMH give 100% to take care of patients; this time, they are doing something on-site that will ensure all TMH staff stay mentally and physically healthy so they can continue to care for our residents when they need them the most”, writes Wendy Warner, Head of TMH Foundation.

The BBQ was sponsored by Smylies Independent, and the music performed by TMH Foundation Director Dan Koets and his friend Pat Clark from Riverside Music.

You can donate to “I Count” at TMH anytime by contacting Sharon Adams or Kathy Hyland, two employees who spear-headed the campaign; or on-line at TMH Foundation. The funds will be used to support their own health and wellness, and, a centre to that end.

TMH Tel: 613.392.2540

Poetic Auto Shop tickles passers-by

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Doug Rutledge is the Chief at D & D Auto. His team, including his lifelong partner, Jessie, work on penning 5 lines with 17 characters each month for the pleasure of passers-by on Wooler Road, Quinte West (across from the Ultramar). This particular epithet shown above is my favorite; Jeremy Clark, a former employee authored this one over a year ago.

The marketer in me suggested to make the last row an arrow pointing to the left; after all, they are just next door. It is entertainment; but, also point-of-sale advertising.

Enjoy some of the more stellar “stanzas” (a unit within a poem):

CARS R LIKE STARS OF CONSTELLATIONS WATCHED THROUGH THE TELESCOPE OF STELLAR SERVICE

THERE’S NOBODY THAT ISN’T SOMEBODY

IMPORTS : R BABIES, DOMESTICS : R KIN, CLASSICS : R ELDERS – COME JOIN THE FAMILY

AS NATURAL AS A FLOWER’S SCENT OR A BIRD’S SONG IS OUR CARE FOR CARS GONE WRONG!

EVERYTHING IS GONNA BE ALRIGHT

FREE WARM AND FUZZY WITH EVERY VISIT NO PURCHASE REQUIRED

WE’VE BEEN TOLD WE’RE PRETTY SWEET, NOT REFINED SUGAR SWEET…MORE LIKE UNPASTEURIZED HONEY

Now, can we get the mechanics to recite poems as they work under the lifts?

D&DBlack LOGO

And the love spreads to the logo

Drop in and meet the poets at “Double D” or bring your own poems for sign publishing.

83 Webb Rd. , Trenton (just south of the 401 off Wooler)

613.965.4219

(Make sure to hop over Maurice the sheep dog at the front door.)