Playing with history

Jowi Taylor spent 11 years, drove and flew hundreds of thousands of kilometres, and spent an immeasurable amount of money to build a guitar that he can’t play. And he doesn’t regret it one bit, but this is no ordinary guitar. Six String Nation, which goes by the nickname Voyageur, contains historically-significant materials from all of Canada’s … [Read more...]

‘Absent No More’ workshop seeks to break single parent cycle

It’s a subject not everyone wants to talk about. A 2011 Conference Board of Canada report found northern Saskatchewan had by far the highest rate of single-parent families in the country, at 37.5 percent, ahead of northern Manitoba and Kitikmeot, Nunavut. The issue does not affect everyone equally. Aboriginal women, in particular, are … [Read more...]

Love 63 Years Strong

The answer to 63 years of happy marriage is simple to John and Nina Dopko. Keep busy. “She’d always say ‘Let’s not argue, let’s get to work’,” John, 90, says while leaning back and holding Nina’s hand at the Northland Pioneer Lodge. “There’s no time to argue, we’ve got lots of work to do!” That approach seems to have worked for the … [Read more...]

Sounds to Soothe the Soul

Psychosomatic therapist Lorrel Elian had enjoyed a successful career in the beauty industry, as an educator and in real estate when she realized something was missing. And then everything became crystal clear. “One day, you just realize ‘How come it feels so empty?’ So I began this search,’ Elian said. That search led Elian to try and get … [Read more...]

Honouring a Life of Service

Ask friends and family how they would describe Russell Mark Nelson and the answer is nearly unanimous: Dedicated. The former fire chief and long-time city employee died of lung cancer on Jan. 24. Nelson was so dedicated to those close to him that when he lost his son Greggory to a car accident in 2008, he still finished building a house he … [Read more...]

Author Offers A Bite From Childhood

Like many Meadow Lakers, Big River author Todd Devonshire’s childhood is defined by hockey in small town Saskatchewan. But there’s one thing that stands out. Rink burgers. The enduring memory of hot burgers in a cold rink is synonymous with Devonshire’s formative years, and also the title of his first book, which he shared at Meadow Lake … [Read more...]

Women Of All Trades

It’s easy for North West Regional College student Katie Sylvestre to explain why she entered a trade traditionally seen as a man’s domain. “I know there’re not that many girls in welding, so I wanted to prove that girls can do what guys can do,” she said with a laugh. And can they ever. Sylvestre is one of many young women entering trades … [Read more...]

Del Duca Ready To Serve

When Liberal MPP Steven Del Duca was campaigning with Premier Dalton McGuinty over the summer, he came to two major realizations. The first, he says, is that the premier apparently has no trouble connecting with everyday Ontarians. “I was struck by the sense of understanding in people’s eyes, once they got over the shock that our premier was … [Read more...]

Carving Coats-Of-Arms Is His Passion

Don Valley Village artist Donald Black can proudly say he’s carved the coats of arms for every Canadian province. After all, it only took him two decades. “I didn’t have any deadlines, so it took me about 20 years or so to finish the thing,” he says with a chuckle. The North York carver has lived in the neighbourhood for more than 40 years … [Read more...]

A Night At The Lanes

Danny Scherer and Dani Lunsky both love coming to Reena’s weekly bowling event for adults with developmental disabilities, but for very different reasons. Lunsky comes because she genuinely enjoys bowling. Scherer? He admits he finds it boring. But he has a more meaningful motivation. “I just come because my fiancée loves it so much,” he … [Read more...]