Tuesday, August 31, 2010

City of Nanaimo Burning Ban Update

Small Confined Cook Fires 
& Private Campground Fires Allowed

The Coastal Fire Centre has issued an information bulletin indicating that effective noon September 1st, 2010, campfires will be permitted throughout the Coastal Fire Area with the recent rains and cooler weather patterns central Vancouver Island area has been experiencing.

Although the campfire ban has been lifted, the City of Nanaimo bylaw remains in effect which does not allow open burning within city limits. Small confined cooking fires and private campground fires are permitted under the bylaw.

In addition, a smoking ban continues to be in effect in City of Nanaimo parks, as conditions are still dry and forecasts indicate another drying trend.

If you see smoke or signs of fire, please do not hesitate to call 9-1-1. For more information on City of Nanaimo Burning bylaw visit www.fire.nanaimo.ca or call the non-emergency line at 250-753-7311.


Not Convinced No Fluoride In Nanaimo Water

Offers No Proof Of Claim

In spite of the fact that Bill Sims, the city manager of water resources flatly states that Nanaimo does NOT add fluoride to the city drinking water one local resident is not convinced. In fact she has launched a Facebook page (We are change Nanaimo) in an effort to warn people of potential hazards in the city water supply from the addition of fluoride.

The following comment is posted on her facebook page this morning, and while she may still be unconvinced she does not offer any test results etc. that would support her suspicions.

Amanda Orum "Seem to be at a dead end with my campaign in Nanaimo, unless there are some information people would like to share. I recently talked to Bill Sims, the gentleman that works for public works in Nanaimo, he says that nanaimo does NOT add Fluoride in the water and that this method is all natural... Some how I just don't believe him and I need to think of a way to show his lies... Its been proven that the city lies so they can avoid these types of situations."


Canada's Housing Bubble

 "An Accident Waiting To Happen"

OTTAWA – For the first time in 30 years, a synchronized housing bubble has spread to six red-hot real estate markets in Canada, says a report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA).

Canada’s Housing Bubble: An Accident Waiting to Happen examines trends in house prices in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal and Ottawa between 1980 and 2010 and finds price increases in those cities are outside of a historic comfort level.

On average, inflation-adjusted house prices in these cities have historically held stable at between $150,000 and $220,000 in today’s dollars, but current housing prices in all six major markets are now over $300,000, on average.

“The bursting of housing bubbles is a rare event in Canada, but the steep rise in house prices in so many cities displays all the hallmarks of an accident waiting to happen,” says the report’s author David Macdonald, a CCPA research associate.


Special Tax Budget Meeting Nanaimo City Hall

Council Set Priorities For Staff

After about 30 minutes of waltzing around the mulberry bush city council agreed to support 8 priorities as outlined by city staff. The object of the exercise was to give staff some direction in preparing a budget to spend your tax dollars for next year.

The preliminary estimates are for a nearly 6% tax increase for 2011 as things stand at the moment.

None of the priorities adopted by council included items such as determining what levels of tax increases are going to be sustainable over the next 5 years, nor was there any direction to look at areas of staffing which could produce some tax savings.

After much discussion about concern over having to wrestle with the impending tax increases next year, with barely a sideways glance the council agreed to spend $40,000 of YOUR tax dollars on a bike lane on fourth St.

That single decision is a clear example of the mindset of council and staff which says that unless they are spending money, they are not working. It seemed it never occurred to them to save the $40,000 rather than making a bike lane which goes from nowhere to nowhere.


Crooks Provide First Hand Advice To Protect Your Home

Nanaimo and District Crimestoppers Provide Tips To Avoid Home Break-in

Have you ever wondered how burglars select home to break into. Wonder no more, the following "how to" list was provided by over 105 convicted burglars.
The following "how to '" was provided by over 105 convicted burglars currently serving time in provincial and federal institutions for breaking into homes. Remember, the average criminal breaks into over 30 homes before getting caught. Read carefully ,these guys know what they are talking about:

1. Of course I look familiar.  I was there just last week cleaning your carpets, painting your shutters,or delivering your new refrigerator.

2. Hey, thanks for letting me use the bathroom when I was working in your yard last week. While I was there, I unlatched the back window to make my return a little easier.

3. Yes, I really do look for newspapers piled up on the driveway. And I might leave a pizza flyer in your front door to see how long it takes you to remove it.


Marihuana Bust Waring Road Cedar

Investigating Home Invasion
Nets Marihuana Bust

On Saturday morning at 9:55am police were summoned to the 1900 block of Waring Road in Cedar for the report of a male screaming for help. The male resident had been home alone and sleeping when two males with ski masks covering their faces kicked in the front door and assaulted the male in his bed. The victim fought back and was sprayed with bear mace, and received a laceration to his head. The male suspects fled the home. When police units arrived, including the Nanaimo RCMP Dog Section, it was determined the suspects had left in vehicle which had been parked down the road. The male resident was transported to the hospital by ambulance where he was treated and released.

While police were on scene investigating the home invasion, a strong smell of fresh marihuana was detected and a marihuana grow operation was discovered in a large outbuilding on the property. A search warrant was executed and a moderate sized indoor grow operation was successfully dismantled by police.

The 45 year old male resident of the home who was the victim of the home invasion was arrested and is facing a charge of Production of a Controlled Substance. He was released on a Promise to Appear with conditions for a later court date. A 44 year old female, also a resident of the home, was arrested on the scene and is facing the same charge. She will appear in court at a later date.

The suspects involved in this home invasion have not been located. If anyone has any information about this incident and can assist with the investigation they are asked to contact the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or make a report through Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.


Parkway Crash Victims Identified

The 10:46am crash involving a car driven by a 91 year old motorist and a motorcycle on Hwy 19 under the East Wellington overpass claimed the life of Fred Cormons who was the elderly driver of the 1977 Brown Chevy Nova. Cormons was a Nanaimo resident. The motorcyclist who struck Cormons, is identified as Gus Thorne, a 29 year old Nanaimo resident who had been operating a 1999 Harley Davidson motorcycle. Thorne’s condition remains critical in the Intensive Care Unit at the Victoria General Hospital.

Just three hours after this crash,at 2pm, another crash claimed the life of a lone motorcyclist on 5th Street near the Hwy 19 intersection. This incident claimed the life of 57 year old William Casey, also a Nanaimo resident. Casey had been operating a 1994 Kawasaki motorcycle.


Monday, August 30, 2010

Your Comments Are Invited

You Can Participate In This Blog

At the bottom of each article appearing on Nanaimo Info Blog is a link which simply says 'comments', there is a number in front of it which indicates the number of comments left.

If you would like to have your say on something here, simply click on the word comments and a form will open you can fill out and submit. All comments are moderated so there is no cussin' and such.

You are encouraged to say what's on your mind and make Nanaimo Info Blog 'your' blog.


Making Canadian Housing Affordable

Sweat Equity Makes Housing More Affordable
Sweat Equity + 0% Mortgages + 0 Taxes 
= Affordable Housing

The recent meltdown of the world financial systems will not be explained or understood by this humble fellow. In fact after listening to and observing all those 'not-so humble' fellows explaining what is going on, I have concluded that they don't know either. The other conclusion, is that regardless of the positive talk coming from some leaders about how good the Canadian economy is, if the other shoe drops in the USA and we do get a 'double dip' recession, things might not be as rosy as we would like to think.

In the meantime, back on point. The housing craziness which ripped through Canada and the US in recent times is no doubt a serious component in the recent fiasco that is still shaking things up. Housing prices simply were outrageous, driven by human greed and fueled by a herd mentality and facilitated by a banking system also consumed with greed.

Making Housing Affordable

When my father and my wife's father were young men with young families, they rolled up their sleeves and actually built their homes with their own hands! Neither were carpenters by trade and both relied on the help of skilled people for some parts of their construction. However, for the most part, they cut the lumber and drove the nails to create their own homes. They also did this , I might say while holding down full time jobs by working in the evening ( no four hours in front of the telly ) and on weekends.

"But they were different back then" you might say, and you would be right, however there is no reason that today's generation could not be equipped with the same skills if our educators valued those skills as highly as inputting data into a computer or any number of other jobs which don't really need doing.

So, the first step in providing affordable housing is equipping people with skills which would allow them to roll up their sleeves, get dirty and tired and sore and actually contribute something to their home except the promise to make mortgage payments. Getting this current generation off the couch and away from their video games, pc's or cellphones long enough to break a sweat is a challenge for someone else, I am just offering a valid answer to the cost of housing.


Great Concert But No Food Concession

Where Were The Food Vendors??

Yesterday at about noon I went down to Maffeo Sutton Park to see the Blues in the Park Concert and was pleased by the support the event was having. By noon there was virtually no parking left in the park and happy listeners were spread out across the grass at the Lion's Pavillion.

There was a place you could buy a Blues Festival shirt or cap but look as I might, I could not find one food vendor.

So what is up with that?? The 'know what we can eat crowd' at city hall (Jeff Ritchie) awarded the contract for food vending to only one vendor this year. The reason offered in the local press does not seem to make much business sense, but what else would you expect?

As much as this would have been a great event to buy ice cream, popcorn, candy floss, hot hogs and french fries, by 1:45 pm when I left you could still not even buy a salad or tofu burger.

Somebody is seriously fumbling the ball on this one. Why not ask your councilor to ask Parks and Rec what the heck they are thinking with this 'only one' vendor for Maffeo Sutton Park. While you're at it, let them know you ENJOY a hot dog and coke and ice cream while out for the day and have no interest in buying tofu and a salad regardless of what 'Big Brother' says is good for you.


Nanaimo Property Taxes To Increase 22.34% by 2014

Property Taxes To Rise 22.34%
User Fees To Rise 5.16% by 2014

According to the 2010 - 2014 City of Nanaimo Financial Plan city taxes will increase by nearly 22.5% by 2014 and fees will increase by another 5.16% in the same period.

If you consider that residential taxes went up 4.61% from 2009 the combined increase is nearly a 28% increase. This year the average cost increase to taxpayers is about $100 per year, if you consider the same increases are projected through to 2014 you can expect another $500 going to pay property taxes by 2014.

There is a special open finance/policy committee of the whole meeting today at City Hall at 4:00pm in the board room at city hall. The purpose of the special meeting is to discuss the budget.


Construction Zones In Nanaimo

Nanaimo Road Construction Delays

Two areas to avoid around Nanaimo if you possibly can are Departure Bay Rd. at Hammond Bay and Bowen Road near the Quarterway bridge.

Either take a different route, or take a Valium and just chill if you have to use these routes. Don't start blowing your horn or giving attitude to the people directing traffic. They aren't having fun out there under the blazing sun standing on scorching pavement either.


Back To School Tips


All Students:

  • Insist that your children eat breakfast every day, as it provides fuel for the brain to learn and helps them maintain a healthy weight.
  • Keep nutritious foods, like cut-up vegetables and fruit, cheese sticks, low-fat yogurt and butter-free popcorn on hand to make healthy snacking easy.
  • If your child has anaphylaxis, coordinate with the school principal on an updated emergency plan that best meets your child’s needs.
  • Schedule regular dental and any necessary medical checkups.
  • Encourage your children to choose milk or water at meals instead of sugary drinks, energy drinks with excessive caffeine or pop.
  • Get children active through sports, or go for nightly family walks or bike rides.
  • Develop good hand-washing habits as frequent hand-washing reduces the spread of bacterial, cold and flu viruses.


Sunday, August 29, 2010

'Blues In The Park Concert' a Big Hit

Free Blues Concerts In Maffeo Sutton Park

The weather co-operated for both days free concerts in Maffeo Sutton Park. Reports are there were great crowds on Saturday and on Sunday shortly after noon you couldn't find a parking spot in the park.

Today's performance goes through until 6:00 pm with Foreign Influence, Nanaimo Blues All Stars, Lazy Mike & Rockin' Recliners, Glen Foster Group, Renovation Blues Band and McKinley Wolf rounding out today's offerings.

The event is sponsored by the Nanaimo Blues Society, Headliners School of Performing Arts, Long & McQuade and the City of Nanaimo.

The next Summertime Blues is planned for next Aug. 26 - 28 2011 after taking this year off allowing the Nanaimo Blues Society to examine it's future options and develop a business plan for the event. You can learn more about the Nanaimo Blues Society by visiting their website using this Nanaimo Info LINK.


BC's Insatiable Appetite For Cash

Engaging in business which has no redeeming social values used to be the area of human exploitation engaged in only by the criminal element who were once considered outlaws.

The lines are becoming blurred enough to have become nearly indistinguishable. 

How has our province become so poorly managed that in spite of  incredible natural resources, high taxes and now the HST, that this government is so dependent on gambling as a revenue source?

Do you think this type of taxation takes from the well to do in society and gives it to the poorer? Think again, it exploits those in society that can least afford to loose any more of their income to this cash starved monster we have created.

Recently when the governments online casino site was down for repairs it was reported they were loosing about $190,000.00 per day! If you think you can win at online gambling, where do you think that $190,000.00 (probably gross understatement) per day was going to come from?


Things That Makeya' Smile Around Nanaimo

Location, Location, Location
One of the prime retail spaces in Terminal Park Mall has found a new tenant in Charlie Brown's Health Foods who was also likely displaced from their Port Place/Harbour Park Mall location recently.

It is thought if you want to start a hamburger stand, getting as close to a Golden Arches as you can is a good plan, as they are already drawing people to the area who are potential customers.

Wisdom might say that the customers of one store may sooner or later become customers of the other. One will take your health while the other will try and restore it.


Saturday, August 28, 2010

Beware Of Fake Soldiers On Dating Websites Warns BBB

Scammers pretending to be members of the military are wooing women on Internet dating and social networking sites, but they aren’t looking for love --- they are looking for money.

These scammers are using real military photos to create fake profiles Some scammers have even used photos of military members that have passed away.

Con artists build relationships with women and then start asking for money for things like Internet use, phones, leave papers, money to enable them to come visit the victim, etc. Once the women send the money, they never hear from the “man” again.

“To play on someone’s emotions and respect for the military is extremely appalling,” said Rosalind Scott, Executive Director of BBB Vancouver Island. “Online dating is popular. Scam artists know that. So, be cautious when using this service. Don’t be too trusting.”

Many of these e-mails have been traced back to foreign cyber-cafes in Africa, making it difficult to track down the individuals operating these scams.

Dating services have seen this scam on their radar so be careful when on such websites and never, ever send money to someone you’ve never met.


Friday, August 27, 2010

Things To Do In Nanaimo Aug. 27 - 29

Nanaimo Events and Activities

The Nanaimo Things To Do Directory has over 160 different contacts for every interest from Air Cadets to Windsurfing and everything in between. To visit this directory use this  Nanaimo Info LINK.
FREE Friday Films use Nanaimo Info LINK
Nanaimo Pottery Co-op Summer Sale use Nanaimo Info LINK
Sat. & Sun. Blues In The Park Free Blues Concerts use Nanaimo Info LINK

Fri. calendar of events use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Sat. calendar of events use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Sun. calendar of events use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Blues In The Park Concerts Nanaimo 2010

To View The Lineup For This Concert Click HERE


ICBC's Tips For Teen Drivers

What your teen needs to know to drive smart

The weather is hot, school is out and now your teenager wants to hit the road – in your car! In 2009, more than 50,000 teens got their first B.C. driver's licence.
Once your teen has passed a knowledge exam and vision test, they're permitted to get behind the wheel – with some restrictions. However, driving is especially risky when you lack experience as a new driver. Not only are new drivers more prone to crash, one in four of their crashes result in an injury or fatality. 

Here are ICBC's top five tips to help you teach your teen how to drive smart:
No. 1 — Set the right example: Driving lessons start much earlier than you may realize – your children will observe your actions and attitude from a very young age. To set a good example, remember that most driving slip-ups result from lapses of attention – stay away from anything that takes your mind from the road whether it's food, coffee or make-up. And remember, it's not only dangerous but it's now against the law to use a handheld electronic device while driving. When your teen's in the learner stage, you'll get a copy of ICBC's Tuning up for Drivers guide with their licence. Review it with them – it's a great hands-on guide for new drivers and their supervisors. This is a good time for parents to brush up on the rules of the road and work on any bad habits.


Vaccinate Dogs Against Parvovirus

The local daily reports that Ken Langelier of Island Veterinary Hospital is advising dog owners to have their dogs vaccinated for Parvovirus after the recent death of two dogs.

The virus is contagious among dogs and can survive on inanimate objects such as cage floors or food pans for days. Symptoms of an infection can include severe vomiting and diarrhea.
In the past two weeks there have been several dogs sick with the disease and two have actually died from the infection.

Dog owners are urged to have their dogs vaccinated against the virus and keep unvaccinated dogs away from public places. You should call your vet immediately if you suspect your dog has the virus.


Second Motorcycle Accident Claims Victim

It has been a day of tragedies in Nanaimo after a third male has died from injuries sustained in a single vehicle motorcycle accident that occurred this afternoon on the Island Highway.

The deceased ,age 53, a resident of Nanaimo was airlifted to Victoria General Hospital and was pronounced dead shortly before 6 PM this evening. At approximately 2 PM today Police, Fire and BC Ambulance responded to the intersection of Fifth St and Highway 19 for reports of a single vehicle accident involving an older model motorcycle. Witnesses spoken to reported seeing the bike going north on Highway 19 then attempting to make a left or east bound turn onto Fifth St when for unknown reasons the driver lost control and collided with a yield sign. The male impacted with the sign while the bike skidded along Fifth striking a School District 68 van occupied by one adult who was not injured.

The motorcyclist received life threatening upper and lower body injuries and was transported to hospital ,then later airlifted to Victoria General hospital.

Witnesses to the crash also reported seeing a vehicle stop at the accident and a male get out and have a brief conversation with the critically injured male. The male was seen taking a white garbage bag from one of the saddlebags of the bike. He then got back into his car, occupied by several other males and continued north along Highway 19. The vehicle was described as being either an Intrepid or Chevy Lumina.

Once again, Re-constructionist attended to the scene along with RCMP Traffic services.The motorcycle described as being a 1994 red Kawasaki was towed for a mechanical inspection. The name of the deceased is not being released at this time pending followup with family members by investigating members. It is unknown at this time what factors contributed to the crash.

Witnesses to the incident or to the actions of the deceased prior to the collision are asked to contact the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345. Anyone with information on the item removed from the saddlebags is also asked to contact the Nanaimo RCMP or to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477or go online at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com.


One Dead In Car Motorcycle Collision

One Nanaimo man is dead after a motorcycle and car collided this morning on the Island Highway.

At approximately 10:45 AM Police, Fire and BC Ambulance crews responded to a report of a collision in the north bound lane of Highway 19 in the vicinity of the East Wellington Rd overpass. Preliminary accounts obtained from witnesses, indicate an older model vehicle appeared to have stopped or slowed down in the slow lane and was attempting to pull into the emergency lane of the twinned highway ,when a older model Harley Davidson motorcycle struck the rear of the vehicle at a high rate of speed.

The driver of the vehicle, age 91, sustained life threatening injuries and died at hospital. He was a long time resident of Nanaimo. It is believed he may have been in medical distress just before the collision . The operator of the motorcycle, age 29 ,also of Nanaimo, received life threatening head injuries and was air lifted to Vancouver General Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. Family members for both males were notified ,however , their names are not being released at this time.


Nanaimo RCMP would like to correct some previously released information about the collision which occurred at 10:45 am on the 26th of August, 2010, on the Nanaimo Parkway under the East Wellington overpass. The driver of the motorcycle, a 29 year old man from Nanaimo, is currently in the Intensive Care Unit of Victoria General Hospital., not deceased as previously reported.
The Nanaimo RCMP regrets that incorrect information was provided.

BC Coroners service along with an RCMP re-constructionist assisted by Nanaimo RCMP traffic services attended to the scene. Both vehicles will be subject to a mechanical inspection. Nanaimo RCMP are are requesting any witnesses to the accident to please contact their office at 250-754-2345.


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Green Bin Food Waste Collection Coming Soon In Nanaimo

Routes E & F Will Start After Thanksgiving

The new Green Bin Food Waste collection program will be starting in Nanaimo this fall with collection routes E & F being the first to get this new system of garbage collection.

During the month of September you will be receiving your new green bin in which you can store your kitchen waste which will be picked up every week. Your regular garbage will no longer be picked up every week, but rather every other week now. This is supposed to actually increase the amount of waste you can take to the curb by 19 litres. Of course for that to be the case you have to fit the 'mix' of waste this theory is based upon. which means that if you are presently composting, the program is useless to you and you will have to hang onto your other garbage for another week.

The new collection system will look like this:

  • Week 1 - Food waste and Garbage
  • Week 2 - Food waste and Recyclables
  • Week 3 - Food waste and Garbage
  • Week 4 - Food waste and Recyclables

 To learn what waste can go in the new green bin use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

For the full story on this new collection system you can view the online version of the 'Waste Line' newsletter using this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Free Friday Night Films

Aug. 27 8:00 PM
Diana Krall Plaza

Admission and popcorn is FREE! There is bleacher seating. or you can bring your favourite lawn chair if you prefer.

Admission is free, but you are encouraged to bring a non-perishable food item which will be going to the food bank.


Things On the Net That Makeya' Smile

It Makes Parallel Parking A Breeze!


New Political Party in B.C.

B.C. FIRST (BCFP) Offers Alternative

An article in today's Times Colonist reports that Vancouver HandyDart driver Sal Vetro has registered a new poltiical party in BC which he feels will provide BC voters an alternative to the Liberals and NDP.

Vetro describes his party as a "centrist, pro-democratic party" ran for the Canadian Alliance Party in the 2,000 federal election and until this summer was a member of the BC Conservative Party.

Currently there are 23 political parties registered in BC which is partially the result of the fact it costs no money for anyone to form a political party and the only requirement is to file an annual form and run at least two candidates within two elections.

Although Mr. Vetro is an active anti-HST campaigner there is no political association with Anti-HST founder and former premier Mr.Vander Zalm with the new party.

Comment: I believe that Vetro is right in his feelings that people in BC are pretty much fed up with both reigning parties, whether he will offer what is seen as a viable alternative will be seen in the next election.


Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Grandson Telephone Scam Hits Nanaimo

At least ten reports were received yesterday by the Nanaimo RCMP of a telephone scam involving a grandson in desperate need of money .

Throughout the day several callers reported receiving phone calls from a male who identified himself as their “favorite grandson”. One caller said she received six calls from the same person. Most recipients were elderly and were told he had been in an accident in the Toronto area and needed $2300 dollars wired to him immediately The people who reported this said he was very convincing and they wanted to believe him.

Fortunately no one was dubbed by this scam and correctly called the police to report it. One caller took the initiative to contact Phone Busters and was told the phone number is on file with their agency and associated with other telephone scams.

“ Every day hard working honest people are taken in by these scam artists. When in doubt ,tell someone, call the police, the Better Business Bureau or Phone Busters. You can also do a search on your personal computer to see if the phone number has been involved in other fraud files” said Constable Gary O’Brien, media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.

For more information on current scams hitting communities across BC please go to www.phonebusters.com or call toll free at 1-888-495-8501


Bradley Street Fire

Fire Confined To Hedge On Bradley Street

Last night near midnight the fire department had to attend a fire in a hedge in front of a condominium complex on Bradley Street.

The fire was within a few feet of buildings however the fire was contained to the cedar hedge and did not spread to any of the buildings.

This fire is in close proximity to Bowen Park where police have been investigating reports of flares being fired in the park.

If you live in this area and see anything you think is suspicious, you should call 911 immediately as this person needs to be stopped before something very serious happens.


Can You Pass Test For A BC Learner's Licence?

Think You Know The Rules Of The Road?

Click HERE to take the ICBC online practice knowledge test which is the threshold needed to pass to qualify for a learner's permit in BC.

You might be surprised what you have forgotten!


Nanaimo Non-Profit Clubs & Organizations

For a list of Nanaimo non-profit clubs and organizations use this Nanaimo Info LINK. You can download this PDF form to keep on your computer, or print out for future reference.

The directory is assembled by the Parks, Recreation & Culture department of the City of Nanaimo.


Free Summer Concert Tonight

Click To Enlarge
Wellington Jazz Band

Bowen Park Amphitheatre
Wed. Aug. 25 6:00 - 7:30 pm


Full-Day Kindergarten In Nanaimo-Ladysmith Schools


The B.C. Ministry of Education is phasing in universal access to full-day Kindergarten over two years. Full-day Kindergarten will be available for up to half of B.C.’s eligible students in September 2010. By September 2011, full-day Kindergarten will be available across the province.

For September 2010, School District 68 is making full-day Kindergarten available in 18 of the district’s 29 schools that offer Kindergarten. About 60 percent of next year’s Kindergarten students will be enrolled in full-day Kindergarten.

As the Ministry of Education is phasing-in full-day Kindergarten over two years, not everyone can be accommodated for September 2010.

For a complete information sheet about the new full-day kindergarten program in the Nanaimo Ladysmith Schoold District use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

For more information about schools in Nanaimo - Ladysmith including a list of schools and a neighbourhood school locator use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


25 Million Sockeye Return To Fraser River

Click To Enlarge
Largest Sockeye Run Since 1913

No one seems to really know why an overwhelming number of sockeye have returned to the Fraser River this year, but it is a bumper season for commercial fishermen.

This year's run is the complete opposite of last year's return of only 1.7 million fish which was a 50 year low. The last commercial opening for this run was in 2006 when a total of 3.7 million fish were taken.

The unexpected return has caused some problems for supplier and retailer 7 Seas who have had to turn some fishermen away resulting in some of the catch simply rotting in boats. There is a serious shortage of ice and freezer space for storage, as well as a shortage of totes and processing space because many people have abandoned the business because of so many bad years.

The Federal Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, Gail Shea said she has no idea why the return in so high.

Comment: It makes you wonder if anyone in DOF has any real ideas about salmon runs and the like. One theory I heard offered by fishermen is that a large portion of last year's run simply stayed at sea for an extra year, and this year you are seeing a combined return of two years.


Ovarian Cancer Canada Winners Walk of Hope

To visit Walk of Hope Website CLICK HERE

Nanaimo Sept. 12 Registration 9:00 am 
Walk Starts 10:00 am
Westwood Lake Trail
The Mini Winners Walk of Hope - Nanaimo 5 km walk is dedicated to the loving memory of Leah Wickland.
The following prizing and incentives are available to be won:
  • Mini Walk participants will be eligible for an early bird prize of a $300 Winners gift card. The deadline for the early bird draw will be Friday, July 30, 2010 at 5pm EST. Please note that only online registrants will be eligible for these prize draws.
  • Top Fundraisers - The individual who raises the most money nationally will be awarded a prize
  • Electrolux Special Edition front load washer and dryer - for every $200 you raise by September 10 at 5pm EST you will be entered into a draw to win the Electrolux washer and dryer pair. The draw will be held on Saturday September 11 and the winner will be announced on September 12, 2010.
You can register online, on the day of the event or by email to judymueller@shaw.ca


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Suspicious Fires Keep Police Busy

Emergency Flares Over Bowen Park

Nanaimo RCMP and Fire crews were kept busy last night responding to two deliberate acts of arson and one incident involving a flare gun.

The first call was reported to police just after 9:30 PM in the area of Millstone and Bradley St. Callers reported seeing upwards of three emergency marine flares over the sky of Bowen park. Attending officers located the three spent flares in the park but no witnesses were located that could assist in identifying who was responsible for setting them off. There was no fire or damage to the park from the flares
Officers were next called to the area of Norwell Drive and Highway 19a at 11:00 PM. A fire had been lit in a garbage bin next to Neighbors Petro-Canada. The resulting flames quickly spread to nearby grass however fire crews were on scene within minutes and quickly doused the flames before they could spread. Witnesses told police three youths, believed to be males,were seen running away from the bin shortly after the fire heading east bound on Departure Bay Rd.
The last incident occurred at 2:30 AM at the intersection of Cedar Rd and YellowPoint Rd. Each morning newspapers are dropped off at this intersection then later delivered to nearby homes and businesses. Unknown persons have for some time been lighting the newspapers on fire. No collateral damage resulted but it did require Cedar Volunteer fire to attend and extinguish the small blaze.

“The fire index is in the extreme range and it only takes a spark to start a fire. These fires, regardless of how small, were acts of arson and could been much worse had it not been for fire crews responding so quickly” said Constable Gary O’Brien, media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.

If you see anyone attempting to start a fire in a suspicious manner, do not wait and immediately report it to the police. If you have information on any of these incidents , please call the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or go online at www.nanaimocrimestoppers.com


Police Cruiser and Car Collide

 Minor Injuries Result From Accident

A female police officer and two civilians were received minor injuries last night after a two vehicle collision at Bowen Rd and Wakesiah Ave at 10:30 PM.

The officer on routine patrol was proceeding east bound along Bowen Rd when she colided with a vehicle turning left and west bound onto Bowen Rd. The vehicle involved was a four door Chrysler Neon was occupied by two adult males.

Both vehicles collided in the middle of the intersection striking almost nose on. The female officer was shaken from the impact but otherwise uninjured. She was able to force open her drivers door open and after checking on the condition of the two males, called for BC Ambulance and additional officers to attend. The passenger in the Neon, age 28, was complaining of leg pain and was assessed at scene by attending paramedics. Air bags deployed in both vehicles. The male driver ,age 18, was shaken but not injured. All three however were transported to Nanaimo Regional General Hospital for precautionary reasons where they were examined then later released.

The intersection was closed for several hours while officers from the Nanaimo Detachment and a Traffic Re-constructionist from ICARS examined the scene. Both vehicles were not drive able and were later towed from the scene. There has been no decision on charges and it will be dependent upon the investigating officers receiving the report from the attending Traffic Analyst . Ironically , the female police officer, age 30 was working her last shift in Nanaimo before transferring to another Detachment on the Island.

Police are asking for any witnesses to the incident to contact the Nanaimo RCMP Detachment at 250-754-2345.


Nanaimo Pottery Co-op Summer Show and Sale

Nanaimo Pottery Co-op
First Summer Show and Sale

Country Club Mall
Fri. Aug. 27,  9:30 am - 9:00pm
Sat. Aug. 28, 9:00am - 5:30pm

To see the profiles of some of the co-op's members use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Drink Water To Lose Weight

Water Helps Suppress Appetite

Virginia Tech researchers have found that simply drinking 2-8oz. glasses of water 20 minutes before a meal helps dieters lose pounds. On average those who drank water before their meal lost 2.3 kilograms more over 12 weeks than dieters who did not drink the water.

During a controlled study involving 48 adults, age 55 to 75 the group which drank two cups of water before each meal lost 15 1/2 pounds over a 12 week period compared with a loss of 11 pounds for the group not drinking water before their meals.

The group which drank the water were also more successful over a 12 month period in maintaining their weight loss. Water fills the stomach, increasing the feelings of fullness and it is also possible the water is substituting for drinking sugary soft drinks. The average adult drinks about 400 calories of beverages a day which those drinking water seem to avoid.


Nanaimo Goes back To School Sept. 7

Sept. 7 Is Back To School In Nanaimo

It is that time of year again when summer holidays come to an end and children and teachers everywhere look forward with great anticipation to the start of another exciting school year.

If you need information about the schools in Nanaimo use this Nanaimo Info LINK for a complete list of school contact information and a link to the school locator to find the school for your neighbourhood.

The provincial Ministry of Education offers the following advice for a successful start to the school year:

As families across British Columbia get ready for Sept. 7 when students and teachers head back to the classroom, here are some tips to help families prepare for the start of the new school year:

  • Check what time your child’s classes start. Students in different grades may start at different times.
  • Get your children used to the back-to-school routine before the first day of school by having them shift to their school bedtime and wake-up routine the week before school begins.

Parents play a key role during the school year by keeping their children safe and healthy. Here are some ways to achieve this:

  • Make sure your children eat breakfast every day so their minds have the fuel they need to learn.
  • Keep nutritious snacks, like cut-up fruit and vegetables, cheese sticks, low-fat yogurt and butter-free popcorn on hand to make healthy eating easier.
  • Schedule regular dental and any necessary medical checkups for your children.
  • Ensure your children’s backpacks are no more than 10 to 20 per cent of their body weight and that your children use both shoulder straps.
  • Make sure your children know safe routes to and from school. Start a Walking School Bus or Bicycle Train program in your neighbourhood, or find out how your children can join an existing one.
  • Limit your children’s screen time. Explain to your children that it's important to sit less and move more in order to stay at a healthy weight.

Students are often more successful in school when they develop good study habits early on. Parents can help their children study by:

  • Setting up a homework area away from the television and with adequate supplies and lighting.
  • Setting up a regular time to work together with your children.
  • Letting your children see you reading and setting aside time each day to read as a family.
  • Keeping an assignment calendar on the fridge or bulletin board for quick reference of due dates, exams and other activities.


Nanaimo Bastion Repairs Update

Click To Enlarge
Scaffold and Screening All That Remains
On Site Where Bastion Stood

If you have not been downtown in some time you might wonder what has happened to the iconic building on Front Street.

Not to worry, it is being well taken care of and should be back on site in about six weeks time. The company responsible for repairing rot which had caused the building to lean to one side are experts in such repairs. It is the same company that worked on the Kinsol Trestle which spans the Koksilah River in the Cowichan Valley, which is the longest wooden trestle bridge anywhere.

The refurbishing project will salvage 90% of the original structure which is 150 years old and was built by the Hudson Bay Company in 1853. Two cannons provided defense from a possible attack on the new settlement of Nanaimo however, the noon firing of cannons at Pioneer Square is the only cannon fire Nanaimo has experienced.


Monday, August 23, 2010

Fish Tails and Fish Tales

Click To Enlarge
Fish Tales At First Light

Local photo artist Sheryl Falls got up way before breakfast the other day and caught this perfect image down by the Millstone River where it empties into the harbour.

You can almost hear them discussing 'what they're biting on this morning and the one that got away', if you listen real closely.