Saturday, June 30, 2012

Street Hockey Guinsess World Record Attempt

Continuous Street Hockey Game Record Attempt

UPDATE: After several injuries and 50 grueling hours of street hockey it was decided in the interest of safety to end the attempt at a world's record. Organizers promise to return next year in another bid to set the record.

Two teams will attempt to set a world record for the longest continuous street hockey game by keeping the game going for 105 hours and 17 minutes to establish a new Guiness World Record.

The game began at 3:00 am Friday and must continue until Tuesday July 3 at 5:17 pm to be successful in setting the new record. The game is ongoing at the lacrosse box beside the Nanaimo Curling Club on Wall Street.

The game is a fundraiser which will benefit the Big Brothers Big sisters of Central Vancouver Island, Naniamo Ball Hockey League and the Crimson Coast Dance Society.

You can stop by and offer your moral support and any donation you wish to make to the cause will be greatly appreciated.

The two teams involved are sponsored by University Mall and CUPE local 8.


Friday, June 29, 2012

Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Easy Rider - Rides Again!
Wonder If We'll See Any In The Toy Run?


Rathtrevor Beach Popular With Families

Long weekend fun beckons at family-friendly campsites

With the long weekend approaching, and kids out of  school for the summer, it’s time to go camping and when it comes to camping, more campers choose Golden Ears over any other provincial park in B.C., but with 155 parks to choose from, there’s a lot more to explore, announced Environment Minister Terry Lake today.

“I have many fond memories of family camping at B.C.’s provincial parks,” said Lake. “There’s nothing better than setting up camp in one of B.C.’s spectacular parks to help you reconnect as a family.”

It will come as no surprise that the Lower Mainland, Okanagan and Vancouver Island provincial parks are the busiest as they are in the most populated areas of the province. In 2010-11, provincial parks in these three regions attracted 1,345,934 campers – approximately 57 per cent of all campers in BC Parks.

Also, results show that campers clearly favour Golden Ears:
  • Golden Ears in the Lower Mainland – 96,563
  • Rathtrevor Beach on Vancouver Island  – 78,739
  • Cultus Lake near Chilliwack – 74,164
  • Shuswap Lake Park in the Thompson-Shuswap – 70,371

Spectacular parks are just another day at the “office” for B.C.’s park rangers who have the enviable task of patrolling provincial parks. Park rangers reveal their favourite family-friendly camping spots in these staff picks:


Nanaimo Canada Day Weather Forecast

Let's Hope The Weatherman is Wrong
Let's Hope It Is Sunny 
Clear Blue Skies And Mid 20's Temperatures
And A Raise In Pay While We're At It!


Nanaimo Canada Day Weekend Events

Nanaimo Info Events Calendar
Shows 'What's Happening' In Nanaimo

In addition to the regular articles posted on this site with helpful information about what's happening in Nanaimo, readers now have an additional resource which they can use for their own information and also use to post events of their own, so the rest of Nanaimo can know about it.

Simply click on the above image or the similar image in the right hand column of this page and you will go to the new Nanaimo Info Calendar of Events. You will also find the 'Things To Do' page on this website (tab at top of page) links to lots of other useful information about what do do around town.

Canada Day Weekend Highlights

Cutty Sark Regatta hosted by the Nanaimo Yacht Club. June 29 - July 1

Nanaimo Toy Run Saturday June 30 at VIEX grounds.

Canada Day Celebrations July 1 at Maffeo Sutton Park, starts at 11L00 am.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Proposed Downtown Marina Open House

Public Gets Chance To Hear Plans 
For Marina Revitalization

Pacific Northwest Marina Group staff were on hand for the second open house designed to begin the public input process for the revitalized downtown marina. Their first open house had been held about ten days ago on Protection Island.

Representatives explained that one of the myths surrounding this project is that it is a 'done deal', which is simply not the case. While a tentative agreement has been reached which would allow PNMG to lease the waterfront from the Port Authority, it still must go through the public process and also be approved by a branch of the federal government.

Concerns smaller recreational boaters may have about not being able to use the facility are unfounded as are concerns of Protection Island residents that they will not be able to use the facility to tie up for a couple of hours while grocery shopping.

The graphics presented at the open house, are in the very, very early stages of development and only give a very basic idea of the concept which has a long way to go. If all went perfectly including all necessary approvals the project could actually be underway in the spring of 2013 with completion possible by the end of 2013.

The new dock facilities will be floating docks which will be manufactured off site and brought in by tug, not unlike components used to construct the cruise ship terminal.

Commercial fisherman would still be welcome, however repair work could not be done dockside as they currently are, and strict rules would be followed to prevent any discharges harmful to the harbour.

The PNMG will be having information available on limited days and hours from a storefront on the waterfront at the inner harbour. More information is also available from the company website HERE.


Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

What The Old Woman Living In A Shoe
Drives To The Supermarket


Nanaimo Downtown Farmers' Market June 29

 Nanaimo & Area Farmers' Markets

Nanaimo Downtown Farmers' Market
Open Friday ( May 11 - Oct. 5, 2012)

We are proud to say that we believe our market is one of the prettiest on the island. We have a large base of drop in vendors which keep our market ever changing. We enjoy watching the eagles fly overhead, the boats coming and going and the planes taking off every Friday. Our vendors always have a smile for our visitors. Open from First Friday in May to Friday before Thanksgiving.

Also open for all cruise ship dates Fri 10:00am to 2:00pm.

90 Front Street, Nanaimo. On Pioneer Waterfront Plaza  For more information visit their website at or call 250-754-1998.


Downtown Marina Open House June 28th

Open House Thurs. June 28, 2012
Coast Bastion Inn, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
11 Bastion Street, Nanaimo

The group involved with this development now have a website with more information about their plans for the downtown boat basin marina. You can visit their website HERE.


Pretty Stupid Kid ?

Which Will He Take?

A young boy entered a barber shop and the barber whispered to his customer, 'This is the  dumbest kid in the world. Watch while  I prove it to you.' The barber puts a dollar bill in one hand and two quarters in the other, then calls the boy over and asks, 'Which do you want, son?'

The boy takes the quarters and leaves the dollar. 'What did I tell you?' said the barber. 'That kid never learns!'

Later, when the customer left the barber shop, he saw the same young boy coming out of the ice cream store & says ; 'Hey, son! May I ask you a question? Why did you take the quarters instead of the dollar bill?'

The boy licked his cone and smiled, 'Because the day I take the dollar, the game's over!'


Property Tax Fairness In Nanaimo

Shachi Kurl
 Nanaimo Businesses Pay 2.78 Times Residential Tax Rate

How would you feel if you were paying two, three, four, even five times as much property tax as your next-door neighbour, and yet not getting the same amount of services? That’s the reality facing small business owners in British Columbia every day. This week, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business released its 2012 Municipal Property Tax Gap Report, finding that BC small businesses pay an average 2.78 times the residential tax rate for properties of equal value.

Small business has a big impact on BC’s economy, accounting for 98 per cent of all BC business, providing well over half of all private sector job creation and generating just under a third of our GDP. Between 2009 and 2010 alone, small business created close to 14,000 net new jobs, or around 36 per cent of all jobs created. Ensuring conditions that encourage small business success is vital.

This year’s report shows progress toward achieving property tax fairness has essentially flat-lined. On the one hand, this is good news – the trend of increasing the unfair tax burden on small businesses is unsustainable. On the other hand, the failure to achieve any meaningful reduction in the gap is irresponsible and harmful. This lack of political willpower continues to cost not just small business owners, their families and employees, but also the economic health of our province. A recent CFIB survey found that 69 per cent of our members ranked their municipal property tax as the tax most harmful to their business, and this had grown from only 38 per cent six years ago.

Municipal governments rely on property taxes for funding, and so increased spending requires higher property taxes. Business always pays a higher rate than residents, making them especially vulnerable to the impact of excess spending. Property taxes must be paid regardless of whether a business makes a penny in profit. Their property tax bill can be the difference between a business thriving, surviving or dying. In any case, it is not money being used for job creation, expansion or innovation.

In Nanaimo, CFIB found the municipal tax gap rose over the last year to 2.76 from 2.68, and is on par with the provincial average. This gap of more than two and a half to one represents a real burden on local businesses, and on the regional economy. This matters for your families and communities. That’s why it’s important, and that’s why all of us should care.

And that’s why CFIB will continue to speak out for a sustained commitment to greater tax fairness. This will require more action, more progress in narrowing the property tax gap, and a greater effort to reduce municipal operating spending.

Small business owners are the lifeblood of the BC economy. They deserve to be treated fairly. Healthy communities depend on it.

Shachi Kurl
Director of Provincial Affairs, BC & Yukon
Canadian Federation of Independent Business


RCMP Launch New Program

 Positive Ticketing Program 
Encourages Youth Making Healthy Choices

Nanaimo youth will soon get some extra recognition for displaying positive behaviours, leadership skills and good work ethic by local RCMP members. Youth will be rewarded with a ticket that entitles them to three free admissions to a swim, skate and drop in gym session at Nanaimo Parks, Recreation and Culture facilities. The program is seen as a way to break down barriers between youth and police. The passes also provide an opportunity for some youth who may otherwise not have the means to participate in recreation activities.

“We see this program as a win for everyone involved, the youth, our members and our partners at Parks, Recreation and Culture,” explains Cst. Matt Watkin. “Rewarding good behaviour with safe and enjoyable activity options has proven to reduce crime as well as introduce youth to other role models that will support their positive choices and keep them on the right track.”

The tickets include a quick reference code (QR) that when scanned will link directly to the online schedule of the recreation activities available. They also include a list of local youth services available.

“We are pleased to be a part of this program. Encouraging youth to make smart, healthy choices and to be engaged in their community is an important part of our role in the community,” states Suzanne Samborski, Senior Manager, Culture and Recreation Services with the City of Nanaimo.

For more information about the positive ticketing program, please contact Cst. Matt Watkin at 250 754 2345 ext 6261.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Segway Tours Pilot Project In Bowen Park Nanaimo

Victoria Company Offers 
Segway Tours In Bowen Park

Parks Recreation and Culture have given the nod to a Victoria company wishing to offer Segway tours in Bowen Park. The company should be offering tours once they finalize their licensing and insurance requirements and could be up and running the first or second week of July.

The company will be offering pre-booked tours in Bowen Park which will make the park trails accessible to people who might not otherwise be able to enjoy them because of perhaps mobility or injury issues.

The company will only be offering escorted tours and travel will be restricted to being within Bowen Park.


Family Science Center In Bowen Park

Public Asked To Review Concept

A project which has been over a year in the works could ultimately see a Family Science Center in Bowen Park that would in itself be a destination feature of major benefit to Nanaimo on several levels.

In May 2011 PRC gave unanimous support in principle for the concept of a Family Science Centre at Bowen Park as proposed by Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society. This past year has seen the Society complete a feasibility plan which includes draft design and preferred location within Bowen Park. The Society has also done extensive work towards funding and operating requirements. It should be noted that this project does not require taxpayer funding with the exception of the land provided within Bowen Park.

A formal public review of the concept is now required before proceeding further with detailed design and captial campaign to obtain final approval of the project.

Over the summer the Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society will be gathering public input on the concept through the Science in the Park program and also at major special events such as Canada Day, Silly Boat etc.

The Society will then return to the PRC Commission seeking approval to proceed to the next step which will be to develop detailed drawings and launch their capital campaign for the Science Centre in Bowen Park.

To learn more about the Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society and this exciting project visit their website HERE.


Fresh Strawberries In Nanaimo

U-Pick & Picked Farm Fresh Strawberries
Bursting With Colour & Flavour
Dudink's Garden & U-Pick Berry Farm

If you are used to those imitation strawberries that come from far, far away which usually look far better than they taste .... do yourself a favour and head down to Dudink's Garden and U-Pick Berry Farm in South Wellington.

The fresh strawberries should be available until about mid July when they will be replaced with raspberries and blueberries. You can take along your own containers and pay $2.20/lb. for berries you pick yourself, or pay more for berries already picked. Either way, your taste buds are in for a real treat.

Dudkinks farm is located on 20 acres in pastoral South Wellington which is a perfect place to bring the kids and give them a taste of rural life. There is a small playhouse to amuse the young ones and visitors are encouraged to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet of this delightful setting.

In addition to fresh strawberries right now there are also potatoes, beets, carrots and cabbage available for sale as well. For more information about products, pricing, hours and driving directions visit their website HERE.


Deal Struck With BC Teachers

VICTORIA – Minister of Education George Abbott has issued the following statement:

“We are pleased that mediation has resulted in a tentative Memorandum of Settlement between the British Columbia Public School Employers’ Association and the British Columbia Teachers’ Federation.

“Under Dr. Charles Jago’s guidance, the parties worked extremely hard and made progress on many important issues. 

“The term of the agreement runs until June 30, 2013, sets out improved language to manage leave provisions, and is consistent with government’s net zero mandate. In addition, the parties agreed to further discuss and seek mutually agreeable improvements on key policy issues to provide students with the best education possible.  

“In the days ahead, BCPSEA and the BCTF will communicate further information to their members about the agreement and next steps with respect to ratification.   

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. Jago for the tireless commitment, effort and energy he brought to the mediation process. His success in this endeavour is consistent with the many successes he has achieved in his distinguished career.”


Nanaimo Arts Alive Summer School

Arts Alive 27th Annual Summer School

Arts Alive was formed 27 years ago by individuals within the City of Nanaimo Parks, Recreation and Culture Department and School District #68 to provide summer school classes in the fine arts in July of each year. Since then, we have held an annual three week Summer School with classes in art, music, drama, dance and other art genres, and designed for all age groups and all interests.
Each year, the courses we offer evolve to meet different interests, changed demographics and to reflect the increased demands on everyone's time. Arts Alive goes to great lengths to remain relevant, and because of this we are still going strong 12 years into the 21st Century! 
Take the time to check out the 50+ courses we have on offer for 2012. You are sure to find many that will reflect your or your children's interests. Nearly half of this year's courses are brand new and being offered for the first time. As well many well-established favourites are returning.

For full information about courses offered, costs, registration, bursary information and early bird discounts visit the Arts Alive website HERE.


Last Day of School In Nanaimo

Wed. June 27th
Last Day For Elementary Schools
District #68

Wednesday, June 27 is the last day of school for the elementary kids in School District #68, high school kids of course get an earlier start on their summer.

A time of year all parents look forward to with great anticipation and expectations of another delightful time of getting to spend more time with their kids engaged in all those summer fun-time activities that make for a memorable childhood. Long crazy, hazy days spent exploring nature, the beach or the summer cottage....... aahhh summer.

Those Lazy, Hazy, Crazy Days..................Enjoy them while you can!


Nanaimo Cultural Awards Nominations

 Nanaimo 2012 Cultural Awards
Call For Nominations

The City of Nanaimo Cultural Committee will again be recognizing outstanding organizations, groups or individuals in the arts and cultural fields in Nanaimo. The public is invited to nominate organizations or individuals for the ‘Excellence in Culture’ or ‘Honour in Culture’ award. This is your chance to pay recognition to people and groups you know that have made a significant contribution to making Nanaimo a more culturally vibrant city.

Each year, the ‘Excellence in Culture’ award is presented to an organization or individual that has achieved regional and/or national recognition in the field of arts and culture (visual, performing or literary arts). The recipient of this award would be well recognized as a Nanaimo Artist, having demonstrated excellence in their field, and as being a significant inspiration to others. Previous recipients of this prestigious award include music teacher Brian Stovel, internationally acclaimed jazz pianist/singer Diana Krall, author/historian Lynne Bowen, and more recently the city recognized Jillian Vanstone, Principal Dancer of the National Ballet of Canada.

The ‘Honour in Culture’ Award is presented to an individual, group or corporation that is known for their dedication and support of the development of the cultural fabric of Nanaimo. Previous recipients of this prestigious award have included literary arts supporter Thora Howell, The Nanaimo Theatre Group, Arts Alive Summer School of the Fine Arts, arts advocate Sandra Thomson and most recently the city recognized Nanaimo Youth Choir conductor Marian Smith.

Nominations for both awards will be reviewed by the Cultural Committee with recommendations to the Parks, Recreation and Culture Commission for their endorsement. The awards will be presented in the spring of 2013 at the Port Theatre by City Council, in the form of a framed photograph of the recipient that will be displayed in the Margaret Strongitharm Gallery at the Port Theatre. The Nanaimo Cultural Committee gratefully acknowledges the generous donation of professional photographic services by local photographer Gary Peters.

Nomination forms may be picked up at Bowen Park or Beban Park Recreation Centres or online at HERE.  The deadline for submissions is September 14, 2012. For more information, please contact Bob Kuhn, Manager of Recreation and Culture Services at 250-760-1139.


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Conservatives Take Aim At Mulcair

Note:Email Subscribers may have to visit Nanaimo Info Blog to view video.


Nanaimo Gas Prices Still Theft

Gas Prices Reported On Vancouver Island
Can You  SPOT The Difference?

Currently Victoria gas stations are in the midst of a price war, which probably more truly reflects a fair price for gas at the pumps, given that crude oil dropped below $80.00 a barrel yesterday.

The Difference Between Nanaimo, Comox and Victoria?

In a word, COMPETITION, unlike Nanaimo where there is this unprovable monopoly which guarantees there is no real competition in the market place as a result of yet more unprovable price fixing; drivers in Comox and Victoria are experiencing the benefits of a true free market environment.

Sadly, Nanaimo drivers have always been on the short end of the gas pricing stick, partly in part because of lack of genuine competition and partly because we simply seem to be such schmucks who enjoy getting gouged at the pumps.

A few other random prices from around the province are Aldergrove 126.9, Richmond 132.9 and Kamloops 111.9. The Vancouver area prices also include a transit service tax which is specific to their prices only.

With a long weekend coming up, don't expect any price relief as this is traditionally a time when the gas gougers raise their prices.


Nanaimo Bans Bottled Water

City Won't Sell Bottled Water 
In Civic Owned Facilities Or At Civic Events

It took two tries for city council to vote to eliminate bottled water sales at municipal facilities and city sponsored events. Councilor Kipp had to call for the vote again, when it appeared that once again council was unsure how they voted.

This means you will not be able to buy bottled water at a city facility or event within about three months time. Your option will be to bring your own water, or drink from a public fountain, or bring your own container to fill or purchase some other beverage from the vending machine.

It was akin to watching a comedy drama, observing council debate this motion, which seems to have little merit worth the time it has taken to debate, pass, rescind, study, debate, vote on and finally vote on. At the end of it all Councilor McKay asked if we were now banning the sale of bottled water within three months, to which the Mayor said no. The answer of course is yes, so even when all was said and done, I doubt if all of council really knows what or why they passed this waste of tax dollars.

CUPE will applaud our forward thinking staff, blah, blah. blah when it appears that their only dog in this fight is to protect union jobs in the municipal water business. As Councillor Greves commented during discussion "this looks like something hatched by four guys in a bar one night".


Canada Day Celebrations 2012

Canada Day Celebrations In Nanaimo

Pull out your national colours (red and white) and get ready to celebrate Canada Day! Enjoy a full day of music and fun down at Maffeo Sutton Park. Canada Day festivities will begin at 11:00am with the Celebration of Flags, followed by live entertainment on the stage from 11:30am to 3:30pm. Kumbana Marimba, Braden Marshall, and Jayden Holman are just a few of the performers in this year’s entertainment lineup. Roving entertainers include Illusion Entertainment Group, Zigster the Trickster, Aunti Bobbi and Vesta Fire.
Various booths, sponsored by local community groups and organizations, will be offering free interactive activities. Participants include Steve Marshall Ford, Arts Alive, Nanaimo Canoe and Kayak Club, Nanaimo Recycling Exchange, Team Water Smart, Regional District of Nanaimo, Nanaimo Organization for the Visually Impaired, Taoist Tai Chi, World Taekwondo, Georgia Straight Alliance, Nanaimo Astronomy Society, Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society, Vancouver Island Symphony,Central Vancouver Island MultiCultural Society, RCMP- Community Policing, Fire Department, and the Miss Nanaimo Welcome Centre.
Food and snacks from a variety of food vendors such as Tin Tin Market, Greek Delight, K&K Hotdogs, Dogzilla, Cedar 4H, Mini Donut Factory, and the Nanaimo Hungarian Cultural Society will be set up throughout the park.
For more information on Canada Day Celebrations, please contact Nanaimo Parks, Recreation & Culture at 250-756-5200.


Popular Coastal Naturalist Returns To BC Ferries

On select sailings from June 29th - Sept. 3. 2012

BC Ferries and Parks Canada are teaming up once again to provide travellers
the opportunity to discover the world beneath the waves with the return of the Coastal Naturalist program. Over 165,000 customers participated in the onboard presentations last summer, which are interesting and educational for kids of all ages.

Nine Coastal Naturalists will provide 20-minute presentations to inform and inspire passengers about a wide variety of subjects, including B.C.’s wildlife and marine life and Parks Canada’s incredible places to visit. This year’s fun, interactive presentations will reveal exciting insights into the struggle for supremacy between eagles and herons, the magnificent species that make the Strait of Georgia worth protecting, the realities of living with cougars, wolves and bears, and many other distinctly West Coast wonders.

“Customer comments demonstrated overwhelming support for the program and a desire to see it continue in future years,” said Corrine Storey, BC Ferries’ Vice President of Customer Services. The 2012 season marks the seventh year of the popular Coastal Naturalist program onboard BC Ferries.

“Coastal Naturalists can bring the passing ocean and island ecosystems to life. When they are not delivering interactive presentations, passengers can find Coastal Naturalists on the outer decks sharing what’s happening on the Strait of Georgia that day, including the chance to spot eagles, seals and orcas,” said Silva Johansson, Public Outreach Education Officer for Parks Canada.

The Coastal Naturalists will be onboard the Tsawwassen – Swartz Bay and Horseshoe Bay – Departure Bay route on select sailings from Friday, June 29 through Monday, September 3. For schedule details, visit

BC Ferries and Parks Canada partner to provide the Coastal Naturalists program, acting as guides in helping passengers discover BC’s coastlines, and stewards in helping protect them. In British Columbia, Parks Canada manages seven national parks, one national marine conservation area reserve and 13 national historic sites, including Gulf Islands National Park Reserve in the Strait of Georgia and Fisgard Lighthouse National Historic Site in Victoria. For more information on Parks Canada’s places visit


Monday, June 25, 2012

Nanaimo Parking Meter Upgrades

New Coins Require Meter Upgrades

The recent change in the weight of coins being minted in Canada has caused some headaches for any coin operated vending machines and that includes your friendly one-armed bandits spotted throughout downtown including the upper level of the Bastion Street Parkade.

These meters are electronic and require both software and hardware upgrades to be compatible with the new Canadian coins. This new hardware and software however, no longer allows for the use of dimes in these meters, which currently buys 12 minutes of parking.

The upgraded meters will no longer accept dimes but will accept quarters and loonies. So you will no longer be able to plug the meter for only 12 minutes but will have to use a quarter which will buy you 30 minutes of parking. A loonie will buy you the maximum parking limit which is 2 hours.

New decals are on order which will be placed on the meters to avoid confusion. Currently Robbins Parking are charged with making the upgrades which should be completed shortly. Cost of the upgrade is estimated to be $6,000.00.


Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Hmmmmmmmm........ 'nuff said....


Nanaimo Marina Revitalization Open House

Open House Thurs. June 28, 2012
Coast Bastion Inn, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
11 Bastion Street, Nanaimo

The group involved with this development now have a website with more information about their plans for the downtown boat basin marina. You can visit their website HERE.


Nanaimo Toy Run June 30, 2012

Bring The Whole Family
Fun Games & Amusements For Kids

The second annual Nanaimo Toy Run happens this Saturday June 30, starting in Cedar and finishing at the VIEX grounds.

For a schedule of the days events visit their website HERE.

To view the Toy Run route through Nanaimo visit the city website HERE.


Nanaimo BBQ Festival Needs 30 Volunteers

For Festival Information Click Image
BBQ Festival Needs Volunteers

Local event organizer Malcom Makuyana is putting out the call for volunteers to help with a variety of duties at the first ever, Thrifty Foods Nanaimo Barbecue Festival which will be held in downtown Nanaimo on July 14th and 15th. Malcom has at least 30 more spots he needs filling and really needs your help.

You can contact Malvern by phone at 250-619-6344 (office) or 250-667-3399 (cell phone) or you can email him at

This event will be a great addition to the number of summertime festivals that Nanaimo is becoming known for and it does need community support to make it a huge success! Serious BBQ contestants are coming from all over to compete for prize money in this KCS sanctioned event.

Calling All Businesses
Space Still Available In Summer Fun Expo

There is also space available for local businesses to promote themselves at the Summer Fun Expo trade show to be held during the festival in the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. You can book your booth directly online by visiting the Nanaimo BBQ Festival website HERE.


Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell Plant Grand Opening

Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell participated in the grand opening of the Mercedes-Benz fuel cell production and technology development facility in Burnaby today, which is providing 50 new jobs for B.C. families.
 Mercedes-Benz fuel cell plant creates 50 new jobs
$53 Million Investment Adds To BC's Fuel Cell 'Cluster'

Jobs, Tourism and Innovation Minister Pat Bell participated in the grand opening of the Mercedes-Benz fuel cell production and technology development facility in Burnaby today, which is providing 50 new jobs for B.C. families.

British Columbia was chosen as the home of the new facility, beating out some of the world’s largest automotive manufacturing centres: Detroit, California, Stuttgart and Ontario. In the end, it was B.C.’s reputation for excellence in fuel cell research, as well as our existing infrastructure for fuel cell development, that gave our province the edge.

In fact, this Mercedes-Benz investment in our province has confirmed B.C.’s long-held distinction, shared by industry insiders, as the number-one place for fuel cell technology development in the world.

As promised in March 2011, Mercedes-Benz has transformed a 3,300 square-metre section of a Ballard Power facility in Burnaby in a seven-month timeframe, a new record for the company. The first fuel cell stack was produced on June 7 of this year.

The company has invested $53 million in the new plant. In collaboration with B.C.’s world-class fuel cell research and development cluster, Mercedes-Benz is working toward reducing the cost of fuel cell technology for future generations.

The president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Canada is quoted as saying: “Our company has always had an unwavering commitment to innovation, and we recognize that this same spirit exists here in British Columbia.”  “We applaud the province’s multi-faceted, forward-thinking approach that has encouraged the concentration of many brilliant minds focused on research and development in this region. There is no better place to open the world’s first facility dedicated to the production and production technology development of fuel cell stacks.”  
While Minister Pat Bell commented: “B.C.’s greatest resource is our people, and nowhere is that more apparent than in our fuel cell development sector.”  “The Mercedes-Benz investment in our province is a huge vote of confidence in B.C.’s future and an enormous opportunity to stay ahead of the curve in the development of this important technology.”

B.C.’s fuel cell cluster
Dozens of Companies Call BC Home


Sunday, June 24, 2012

Nanaimo Groups & Organizations Beware

Beware Of Thieves Posing As Volunteers

Local event organizer Kim Smythe of Westcoast Communications and Events believes he was the victim of a well thought out and premeditated scam which has cost him dearly.

Kim was invloved with the Multicultural Festival which was held on Wesley Street this past Saturday. As is the case with any organization putting on events of this size there is always the need for volunteer help as was the case with Kim.

Apparently at days end they were loading Kim's van with displays and the like that had been used in the festival and were transporting the items to a local spot they use for storage. At one point while in the process of unloading the van, it was thought two of the 'volunteers' were going to assist in the off loading of the van, instead, they closed the van doors and proceeded to drive off with the still loaded van.

Mr. Smythe pursued in another vehicle but was unable to find his stolen van. Police were on the scene quickly and in spite of cruising the area shortly after the theft were unable to turn up the stolen van.

In addition to the van, id, credit cards, cell phones and a digital camera which had been used to record the Multicultural Festival events have all been lost.

Mr. Smythe is convinced this was a well orchestrated brazen theft which involves working as a volunteer and gaining confidence of legitimate volunteers, all the while looking for an opportunity to steal from the unsuspecting.

Similar groups and organizations should be aware of what is perhaps another way the lowlifes of this world have devised to prey on the unsuspecting.


Global TV Save-on Foods Contest

Note: Email Subscribers may have to visit Nanaimo Info Blog to view slideshow.

Nanaimo Wins Global TV Contest

If you didn't get a chance to attend the live Global TV broadcast and FREE community breakfast put on by Save-on Foods, you can watch the above slideshow and see what you missed.
Thanks to Winona Adams for nominating Nanaimo and helping let the rest of BC and Canada know, what we already know!. Nanaimo is the Perfect Place To Call Home.

You can view the slideshow 'full screen' size by clicking on the icon on the lower right hand side of the above taskbar.


BC Economic Snapshot June 23, 2012

VANCOUVER, BC, Jun 23, 2012/ Troy Media/ – Consumer price inflation as measured by changes to the consumer price index (CPI) for B.C. slipped to the slowest pace since mid-2010.

Annual inflation fell to 1.3 per cent in May, down from the 1.6 per cent reading in April. The CPI held steady relative to April on a seasonally-adjusted basis and has generally decelerated since February, suggesting a stable price environment for consumers and their wallets.

However, the slow pace of CPI also reflects a tempered economic environment in the province that is not conducive to upward price pressure for general goods and services.

The slow pace of annual inflation reflected a tame price environment for shelter-related costs. The CPI sub-index for shelter was unchanged from May 2011. While electricity prices surged 12 per cent, natural gas was down nearly 7 per cent. Homeowners’ replacement cost also fell 3 per cent on a weaker housing market.

Weak inflationary pressure was also observed for health and personal care products (-0.7 per cent) and products related to recreation (0.3 per cent).

Energy prices are no longer exerting the same pressure on top-line inflation readings that was observed through much of 2011 when double-digit gains were the norm. Year-over-year growth in the energy prices in May fell to 2.7 per cent, down from a range of 3.8 per cent to 5.5 per cent observed in the first four months of the year.

Annual growth in gasoline prices fell to only 1.3 per cent. However, the tempered pace of year-over-year growth, which is expected to persist over the next few months, reflected high comparative price levels in 2011. The current economic environment suggests stable to declining gas prices could be in the cards in the coming months which should keep inflation at modest levels.


Nanaimo Tap Water vs Natural Spring Bottled

What Would The City 'Spin Doctor' 
Have To Say About This One?

The above is a screen grab taken last year from the front page of the Daily News. You may recall about that time the city was explaining to the Nanaimo taxpayers why they were being asked to approve borrowing another $22.5 million to build a water treatment plant as our present level of treatment was not adequate to guard against cryptosporidium and giardia.

There has never been a really good explanation as to why we need to spend another $72 million to avoid a couple of boil water orders every hundred years or so. But the bureaucrats at the city and their counterparts at VIHA have exercised their considerable power over our impotent elected officials, and now we are springing for a gold plated filtration system to solve a problem that boiling your drinking water every now and then would also solve.

Anyone with a serious health concern I am sure has already invested in their own in home water treatment system if they are immune compromised or have some other serious condition requiring extra caution.

Declaring Nanaimo A Blue Community
Would Mean Banning Water 
That Is Arguably Safer Than Our Municipal Water

I really don't think I understand the sense behind this motherhood and apple pie issue but it seems to be the latest cause celeb being touted by none less than a CUPE big wig who addressed city council last meeting.

One item the pro-Blue community folk want to see is the declaration that water is a human right. Fair enough, I suppose food and clothing and shelter are also human rights. But have a civic authority declare it so, has how much weight? When it comes to water as demonstrated recently VIHA has the authority there, and city council just has to smile and nod in agreement.
Another item they want to see the city adopt is the banning of the sale of bottled water at civic facilities. Now this is where I have a problem with the above Daily News story. How can the city argue that the water coming from our taps, at our homes or city venues can possibly be as safe and pure as  'Natural Spring' bottled water?

Did you know, that by federal law, Nestle, or anyone else, can not treat or filter their water in ANY way and still make the claim it is natural spring water? The natural spring bottled water comes from a deep aquifer and is tested hundreds of times daily. A standard that the city of Nanaimo or VIHA has never applied to our drinking water. This means that the natural spring bottled water is at a standard that our tap water NEVER attains, or else there would be no need for treatment, and certainly no need for another $72 million treatment plant.

It will be interesting to see how our crack decision makers deal with this one!


Saturday, June 23, 2012

You Know It's Been A Slow Spring

When Gardening Tools Get So Little Use

The other day I finally felt it was warm enough to put some plants in the ground, so went to get my gardening tools. Judging by the greenery entwining them it's been a slow start in the gardening department this year.

I am optimistic it will be better than last year, which as you recall was quite disappointing, it was the first year that I actually did not bother with any annuals.


Nanaimo This Weekend

Saturday June 23

MINER'S HERITAGE PICNIC 8:30 - 5:00 pm at Deverill Park, Halliburton Street, lots of free family fun activities all day, starting with breakfast.

MULTICULTURAL FESTIVAL, Wesley Street, Old City Quarter. 10:30 - 3:30.

NANAIMO ARTWALK 2012 11:00 - 5:00 Downtown Nanaimo and Old City Quarter.

Sunday June 24

GLOBAL TV & SAVE-ON FOODS "CELEBRATION OF YOUR TOWN", Global TV broadcasts from Nanaimo from 8:00 - 10:00 am from the Woodgrove Save-on Foods store. Save-on will be hosting a free community breakfast.

All of these events are explained in more detail on this website, simply scroll down the page until you come to the appropriate article.


Friday, June 22, 2012

Port Theatre Hosts Morning Mingler

Local Business Folk Get Together Early

The Chamber of Commerce has a series of meetings called 'business before business' where members and guests can get together for a bit of socializing and networking time first thing in the morning.

This past Wednesday's meeting was hosted by the Port Theatre, which if you know anything about 'theatre people' being up bright eyed and bushy tailed for a 7:30 am  meeting is really quite a challenge.

In addition to Chamber members and guests, there were also three students present from the VIU business course. If you would like more information about these meetings, and another series titled 'business after business' put on by the Chamber of Commerce visit their website HERE.


Things To Do In Nanaimo This Weekend

New Events Calendar
Shows 'What's Happening' In Nanaimo

In addition to the regular articles posted on this site with helpful information about what's happening in Nanaimo, readers now have an additional resource which they can use for their own information and also use to post events of their own, so the rest of Nanaimo can know about it.

Simply click on the above image or the similar image in the right hand column of this page and you will go to the new Nanaimo Info Calendar of Events. You will also find the 'Things To Do' page on this website (tab at top of page) links to lots of other useful information about what do do around town.


Sprott-Shaw Students Loans Cut Off

Loan Default Rate 28%
Province Cuts Off Student Loans

The Times Colonist reports that the Ministry of Advanced Education has decided that due to a high ongoing student loan default rate, that Sprott-Shaw Community College will no longer be able to apply for provincial student loans.

The decision takes effect July 31 meaning that students at the Nanaimo campus will be unable to apply for loans from StudentAid B.C. for upcoming programs.

The province says that the loan default rate for this campus has been above 28% for four or more years.

Comment: I presume that the good old taxpayer has been paying for these unpaid bills for years. In what business is a 28% default rate considered acceptable? Only when you can keep raising taxes to pay for your poor judgment would it be possible.


Scooter Safety Rally Nanaimo

 Nanaimo Seniors Services Network

A newly approved association in Nanaimo calling themselves the Nanaimo Seniors Services Network will be holding a Scooter Safety Rally on Saturday, June 23 at 10:00 am in front of Zellers at Nanaimo North Town Centre.

Anyone wishing more information about the network should contact Gord Bibby at 250-756-5528 or 250-716-1799.


How Mortgage Changes Affect Payments

Mortgages Amortized Over 25 Years 
Mean Higher Monthly Payments

The recently announced changes to the mortgage business in Canada will very likely have the effect of disqualifying future home buyers, because the monthly payments rise, as the amortization period reduces.

The amortization period refers to the number of years it will take at the current interest rates to completely pay for your home. Hence, a 30 year amortization period means you will be paying the lender for 5 more years than if the mortgage was written on a 25 year amortization.

$300,000 Mortgage Costs $141.71 More Per Month

Using the RBC online mortgage payment calculator it shows that a $300,000.00 mortgage on a 5 tear term at the fixed posted rate of 5.25% will require $141.71 more by way of monthly payment to meet the terms of a 25 year amortization as opposed a 30 year period.

The cost to service a $300,000.00 mortgage repaying principle and interest only (this does not include taxes) over a 30 year period is $1644.32 and over a 25 year period rises to $1786.03 for a total monthly increase of $141.71.

Remember when banks determine your ability to service a debt and thereby qualify for a mortgage, it could mean that over the 30 year term you may qualify, but over the 25 year term you may not. These changes take effect July 9, 2012.

 The Word Mortgage Means Death Pledge

The Word Mortgage means Death Pledge (just some trivia). Which for many in today's society could be interpreted to mean we will be making mortgage payments until we are dead. It is said the number of Canadians facing retirement are also still carrying a mortgage on their home.

In Canada today, rather than seeing a house as something to own outright, providing the security of having a place to live, many Canadians have seen their homes as cash registers and have re-mortgaged their homes based on rising market value. So, rather than looking forward to living mortgage free, many will be looking at carrying mortgages until they die.

This will also have the effect of eroding the value of your estate, thus reducing the real value that you will be able to pass along to your children.


Nanaimo City Council Meeting June 25, 2012

Nanaimo City Council Meeting
Monday, June 25, 2012
7:00 PM Shaw Auditorium
Vancouver Island Conference Centre

Democracy Is Too Important To Leave To The Politicians
Do Your Civic Duty By Getting Informed and Getting Involved

If you say: " I'm too busy just trying to keep it together to get involved, consider that perhaps, if you were more involved you might not be having so much trouble keeping it together "!

You can view this week's Council Meeting Agenda here - - -  Agenda .

Council decided to add another $700,000 to the $844,000,000 financial plan to pay for a communications person (spin doctor), do you think that is a good use of YOUR tax dollar??

Last Year They Decided to Spend $16,000,000.00 On A New Staff Office. An Amount Equal To YOUR Tax Increase for 5 Years!

At the same time they are building new offices for staff, they are ignoring a $12,000,000 a year funding shortfall for water, sewer and roads, which was identified in a staff report in Nov. 2010!

Attending in person is the best way to see your business being taken care of, second best is watching on Shaw Cable from the comfort of your easy chair, it is also available live online using this link, and last but not least is reading what the local press says went on.


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

 The Good Life On A Budget
Nothing Like a Tarp Soaker Pool
And A Glass Of Vino Straight From The Box!


Downtown Nanaimo Farmers' Market June 22

 Nanaimo & Area Farmers' Markets

Nanaimo Downtown Farmers' Market
Open Friday ( May 11 - Oct. 5, 2012)

We are proud to say that we believe our market is one of the prettiest on the island. We have a large base of drop in vendors which keep our market ever changing. We enjoy watching the eagles fly overhead, the boats coming and going and the planes taking off every Friday. Our vendors always have a smile for our visitors. Open from First Friday in May to Friday before Thanksgiving.

Also open for all cruise ship dates Fri 10:00am to 2:00pm.

90 Front Street, Nanaimo. On Pioneer Waterfront Plaza  For more information visit their website at or call 250-754-1998.


Police Seek Help Recovering Rare Bag

Gordon Street Parkade Thieves Break Into Car 
Steal Rare Bag & Tools

Nanaimo RCMP seek the public's assistance in helping fund some irreplaceable tools that were taken during a vehicle break-in.

On Monday, a Honda Civic parked at the Gordon Street parkade was broken into.
Thieves took a handmade canvas and leather bag that contained tools used in sail repair, leather craft and carving. The bag is one of a kind and it and the tools are considered irreplaceable.

If anyone has information on this crime or the location of the bag, they are urged to call Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
They can also go online at www.


Mortgage Rules Tighten Up

It is reported in the Globe and Mail that finance minister Mr. Flaherty is making mortgage borrowing tougher in hopes of keeping the Canadian debt burden manageable.

Some highlights include maximum amortization for insured mortgages decrease from 30 years to 25 years, no insurance available on homes over one million dollars and the maximum gross debt service ratio will be fixed at 39% down from the current 44%. Homeowners will only be able to refinance their homes based on 80% of their equity, down from the current 85%.

Changes take effect July 9, 2012.


Miner's Heritage Picnic June 23, 2012

Miner's Heritage Picnic
Deverill Park (Haliburton & Irwin)
8:30am - 5:00 pm

The South End Community Assoc. hosts the 20th Annual Miners' at Deverill Park (located between Haliburton and Irwin Streets at Milton Street). This free, family event starts at 8: 30 a.m. with a pancake breakfast.

Presentations take place at 11 a.m. followed by the option to take a heritage walk around the neighbourhood with Jill Stannard of the Nanaimo Historical Society at 11: 15. Activities include live music and entertainment, pony rides, a petting farm, an El Paso train adventure, clowns, and more. At 2 p.m. visit the Strawberry Social Tea, a traditional event dedicated to the memory of local author Laura Ramsey.


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Multicultural Festival June 23


Bill Bestwick Head Coach & GM Victoria Grizzlies

Note: Email subscribers may have to visit Nanaimo Info Blog to view this video.

Bill Bestwick Back In BCHL
Popular hockey coach, Bill Bestwick will be back behind the bench, this time bringing his considerable expertise and passion to the Victoria Grizzlies hockey club.
It goes without saying that anytime the Grizz and the Clippers face off, there should be no trouble filling the seats at the arena. As hockey fans know, there is a little bit of 'history' between Bill and the Nanaimo Clippers current management. 'nuff said.
The above video clip from CTV news also contains some coverage not associated with Bestwick, so unless you are interested in Victoria soccer and golf, you can simply turn off the video when the Bestwick story completes.


Port Theatre Backstage

Backstage At The Port Theatre

People attending the Wednesday morning Chamber of Commerce 'business before business' meeting hosted by the Port Theatre got a chance to go backstage with theatre manager Bruce Halliday.

Bruce offered a very interesting account of the theatre's history and explained how there is far more to a threatre production than most people appreciate who attend any of the 200+ productions put on at the Port Theatre in a given year.

Designed from the ground up, the smallest detail was incorporated into the building of the theatre from the ease of access for loading and unloading equipment, to the level floor from backdoor to the front of the house. There is nothing in the theatre that just happened by accident and even the raw concrete walls are all part of the design which allows for maximum control of the acoustics ensuring that regardless of where you sit, you will experience the highest quality of sound possible.

Even the density of the seat cushions are designed to have the same acoustic quality as if the seat were occupied by a person, ensuring infinite control over sound in any portion of the building.

Backstage was designed with the height and necessary rigging to accommodate even the most demanding of theatre productions including the catwalks 90 feet in the air where many tons of weight are put into play enabling the heaviest of backdrops to be moved with ease.

While the threatre, like many businesses has had it's share of challenges of late, they are currently on track and on budget this year. Those in attendance got a sneak preview of the upcoming Spotlight series which promises to thrill audiences of all interests and tastes.