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By Bonnie Hutchinson

How do we feed both wolves?
 I’m writing this two days after the plane crash in Iran that killed 176 people. I’ve tried to think about something else. But I haven’t recovered from a Wednesday evening conversation with a friend who knew and worked with some of those who were killed. A husband and wife, both engineering professors and their two daughters. Two newly-wed grad students and four of their friends who were part of the wedding party. My friend is gutted. “They were so full of life,” he says. What do you do with the rage and grief? What do you do with the senselessness?
This is personal. And totally preventable. None of this anguish had to happen. Human beings in positions of leadership consciously chose to use their power to inflict this much carnage on this many people. I don’t mean just the plane crash. I mean the entire insanity–the act that preceded the retaliation, and the act before that and the one before that. This insanity has been going on for decades of my lifetime and for centuries before that.
There are no winners. But there are certainly losers–like students and teachers and their children whose deadly error was visiting their families over the holidays.
Until we learn to co-exist with people we don’t like, the insanity will not stop.
And how do we do that? I stumbled across The Fight of Two Wolves Within You, a version by Dean Yeong with a twist I hadn’t heard before. Keep reading to the end.
An old Cherokee was teaching his grandson about life: “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy. “It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil–he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.”
He continued, “The other is good–he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you–and inside every other person, too.” The grandson thought about it and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf will win?” The old Cherokee replied, “The one you feed.”
In the Cherokee world, however, there’s another version of the story. Two wolves are fighting in your mind. Which one will win?
The old Cherokee replies, “If you feed them right, they both win,” and the story goes on.
“You see, if I only choose to feed the white wolf, the black one will be hiding around every corner waiting for me to become distracted or weak and jump to get the attention he craves. He will always be angry and will always fight the white wolf.
“But if I acknowledge him, he is happy and the white wolf is happy and we all win. For the black wolf has many qualities—tenacity, courage, fearlessness and great strategic thinking–that I have need of at times. These are the very things the white wolf lacks. But the white wolf has compassion, caring, strength and the ability to recognize what is in the best interest of all.
“The white wolf needs the black wolf at his side. To feed only one would starve the other and it will become uncontrollable. To feed and care for both means they will serve you well and do nothing that is not a part of something greater, something good, something of life.
“Feed them both and there will be no more internal struggle for your attention. When there is no battle inside, you can listen to the voices of deeper knowledge that will guide you in choosing what is right in every circumstance.
“Peace, my son, is the Cherokee mission in life. A man or a woman who has peace inside has everything. A man or a woman who is pulled apart by war inside him or her has nothing. “How you choose to interact with the opposing forces within you will determine your life. Starve one or the other or guide them both.”
I’d love to hear from you! If you have comments about this column or suggestions for future topics, send a note to I’ll happily reply within one business day.
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Kurek new deputy shadow minister

By Murray Green

Battle River-Crowfoot Member of Parliament (MP) Damien Kurek was appointed as the deputy shadow minister for Rural Economic Development.
“I understand the economic challenges rural Canada is facing and I look forward to being able to advocate for the issues we face,” said Kurek about his new role. “Rural Canada has been hit particularly hard by the policies and direction of the Justin Trudeau-led Liberal Government and they need to be held to account.
“Many rural communities, small businesses, organizations and families are being held back from achieving their full potential. This unrealized potential includes our legacy industries, like the resource and agricultural sectors and the ability to see breakthrough in new and innovative sectors that will transform our nation and grow our economy. Rural Canada should be part of the solution to the challenges facing our nation.”
Kurek looks forward to passionately advocating for rural concerns as he takes on this new role. Additionally, he added that he is excited to be able to work with the shadow minister of Rural Economic Development, MP Bernard Généreux.
The entire Conservative team is focused on holding the government to account and bringing forward positive common-sense solutions to the challenges Canadians face.

Sleep, a wonderful thing

By Lori Larsen

At the end of a long day when we finally lay down for sleep, we rarely give thought as to what actually happens when we shut our eyes and drift off to slumber.
Usually a person goes through five phases during sleep including Stages 1, 2, 3, 4 and REM (rapid eye movement) sleep.
The stages progress in a cycle beginning with Stage 1 (light sleep drifting in and out of sleep, awakening easily) then to REM starting over again with Stage 1.
The average person spends 50 per cent of their total sleep time in Stage 2 sleep, approximately 20 per cent in REM sleep, and the remaining 30 per cent in the other stages. Infants, by contrast, spend about half of their sleep time in REM sleep.
During Stage 1, eye movement and muscle activity is very slow. When awakened from Stage 1, people often remember fragmented visual images and many experience sudden muscle contractions (hypnic myoclonia) which are often preceded by a sensation of starting to fall.
During Stage 2, eye movements stop and brain waves become slower, with occasional bursts of rapid waves called sleep spindles.
In Stage 3, extremely slow brainwaves called delta waves begin to appear, interspersed with smaller, faster waves. In Stage 4, the brain almost exclusively produces delta waves.
During Stages 3 and 4 (combined is referred to as deep sleep), it is extremely difficult to wake someone. There is no eye or muscle movement. If a person is awakened during Stages 3 and 4, more often than not they are disoriented and somewhat foggy for a few minutes.
It is during these stages that people experience sleepwalking, night terrors and, in young children, bedwetting.
In REM sleep, a person’s breathing becomes more rapid, shallow and irregular. Eye movement consists of rapid jerking in various directions and limb muscles become temporarily paralyzed. Heart rates increase and blood pressure rises. Often during REM, people experience dreaming or visual stimulation, so temporary paralyzing of the limbs decreases the risk of a person reacting to the vision and possibly injuring themselves or others.
A complete sleep cycle takes approximately 90 to 110 minutes with the first REM sleep occurring about 70 to 90 minutes after a person falls asleep.
The first sleep cycle will include relatively short REM periods with long periods of deep sleep. As the sleep progresses, REM sleep periods increase in length while deep sleep decreases.
Have you ever experienced a situation where someone tells you they telephoned you while awakening you from sleep and you had a conversation, but do not recall any of it? This is a sleep-related form of amnesia and is also responsible for people not remembering their alarms going off, if they go back to sleep after turning them off.
Our sleep patterns can be affected by numerous variables, some that contribute to a better night’s sleep, such as exercise during the day, fresh air, low light prior to sleep and some foods and sleep aids. However, other variables, including certain foods, especially caffeinated, medicines and rigourous exercise just prior to sleep, can influence different neuro-transmitter signals in the brain, which in turn can affect sleep, even cause insomnia.
Proper sleep is important in restoring both our physical and mental health. Understanding what affects your sleep is the beginning of developing better sleep patterns.

Lovely appointed to committee

By Murray Green

Alberta Minister of Seniors and Housing Josephine Pon has appointed Camrose MLA Jackie Lovely as sub-committee chair of System Coordination and Navigation.
Seniors and Housing established a Minister’s Advisory Committee for Seniors to provide stakeholder perspectives and advice.
“I look forward to heading up the committee which will be contributing to the work of minister Pon’s portfolio and am proud to represent the community of Camrose which has many seniors as residents. The work that the team and I will do will result in a more user friendly experience for Alberta seniors,” said Jackie Lovely.
The focus is to identify opportunities and prioritize actions to strengthen system coordination and navigation for seniors and caregivers, including leveraging community-led work to develop the community-based senior-serving sector; building stronger platforms for collaboration and prioritization of funding among government, community and private-sector organizations; and enhancing supports for caregivers.
Other members participating on the sub-committee are Karen McDonald, Monica Morrison, Rob Miyashiro, Jeff Kasbrick and Reg Joseph.

Let's get physical in 2020

By Lori Larsen

The importance of an active lifestyle, at any age, cannot be understated. The benefits of regular physical activity are numerous.
Is 2020 going to be your year for putting your health into motion?
Health facts
Consider the following proven facts with regards to physical activity before you decide to sit this one out.
Regular cardiovascular exercise creates new brain cells which in turn enhances brain power and activity.
Feel like your memory is slipping? Get up and get active. Exercising increases the production of cells responsible for learning and memory. So not only will you be smarter, but you will remember just how smart you are.
Not only will exercise help you work smarter, but it also increases productivity by increasing the number of endorphins.
A calorie burned is energy earned. Cardiovascular exercise burns calories which actually increases your energy level and makes you want to burn even more calories.  It is a win/win situation for sure.
Exercise develops muscle which makes us stronger and protects our bones. As an added bonus, muscle mass equates to burning more fat while resting. A pound of muscle burns three times more calories than a pound of fat.
As we age, we lose bone mass, but regular exercise strengthens bone density which can prevent osteoporosis.
Exercise is also responsible for the youthful glow by preventing signs of aging. Exercising three times a week for 45 minutes each time helps to keep fine lines at bay.
Exercise can also improve the health of your skin. The sweat released during a more rigourous workout captures dirt and oils in your skin and wicks it away, decreasing the risk of acne and breakouts.
Happy, happy, happy. Exercise is a known mood booster with the release of  beta-endorphin, a natural substance in the body that is hundreds of times more potent than morphine. Most people who exercise regularly report a feeling of calm and well-being and are able to deal with stress in a more productive and positive manner.
One of the obvious benefits of exercise is weight loss. Sedentary people tend to take in more calories than are needed. These unused calories accumulate as fat which settles around our vital organs. A person who is physically active may have a deficit of calories, which takes fat away and lowers weight. Extra weight can also contribute to poor joint health. Also, weight loss can improve a person’s self esteem.
A good night’s rest is imperative for our health and well being. Regular physical activity helps to clear your mind and create a sense of calm, which will help you get better sleep. Caution should be taken with rigourous exercising just prior to bedtime. The boost in body temperature that comes with a cardio workout, along with the stimulation, may interfere with falling asleep.
Some of the most important benefits of exercise is the boost to a person’s immune system which means you are less prone to illness and the strengthening of the body’s vital organs such as the heart and lungs. It reduces the risk of heart disease and increases our ability to move air in and out of the body.
Research has proven over and over that regular physical activity decreases the risk of developing diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and cancer.
While regular physical activity and exercise is a proven life changer, it is important to include a well balanced diet to get maximum health benefits.
So crank up the tunes and get moving. Listening to music while exercising can improve your workout by 15 per cent.
A body in motion stays in motion.

Dr. Boyd enjoys giving back to the community that supported her

By Murray Green

Dr. Charley Boyd is a family physician at the Smith Clinic.
She grew up on a grain farm near Oyen and came to Camrose to go to university at Augustana.
“I picked Augustana because of its size. Coming from small town Alberta, I wanted to start at a smaller university. I wasn’t quite ready to go to the University of Alberta main campus. I was also really excited at what Augustana had to offer,” said Charley.
“I made the decision to become a doctor in high school, based on the classes I was enjoying. I shadowed at a doctor’s office and I enjoyed that as well. I knew I needed several years at university and the more years I took, I would be less likely to return to a rural area,” explained Charley.
She completed three years at Augustana and then moved to the main campus to complete medical school in another four years. Then she began two years of family medicine training. “I was a professional student for a long time, nine years,” she laughed.
“I belonged to the United Church for a lot of years growing up with family and attended a lot of youth events, some of which were in Camrose. My value of church came through the youth years and I found a sense of community and social justice. When I came to Augustana, I connected with the chaplaincy which was helpful, but the United Church is where I felt at home,” shared Charley. “I started attending Camrose United Church.”
The Flying Doctors went to Nicaragua to provide medical attention to an area that doesn’t have a lot of health care.
“I found out about the Flying Doctors separately. The church fostered and encouraged helping others. Joining the Flying Doctors met that mandate for me. The CUC was very helpful and supportive in terms of fundraising to help make that trip possible for me. I remember that they put on a fundraising supper for me, serving spaghetti, and when I returned, we held an event to say thanks for that support and to report back on my experiences and share the stories. I made a presentation sharing pictures and explained what happened,” said Charley.
“It was a huge part of me as far as how I look at medicine. It focused me on the importance of what I do. Part of the amazing work they do revolves around prevention. We built stoves that burn cleaner and hotter in people’s homes with chimneys. Most cooked over an open fire in their kitchen and, as a result, there was a lot of respiratory disease. When you spend 10 days in a place, you look at a meaningful way to impact that community. The stoves we built stayed with families and that made a bigger impact than, say, a single doctor’s visit to a patient. It showed me the power of public health policies, such as having clean drinking water. The stoves and water laid a foundation of better health for people,” Charley explained.
“The biggest piece it gave to me was reflection on what I will do in my career to help people in a way that gives back to the world. Part of what I do in Camrose is in service to helping the population who needs that. I’m building up a partnership with The Open Door to provide safe and timely access to health care for youth. That’s what I do locally. I also help out in Fort Chipewyan, north of Fort McMurray, by flying in a week at a time, every two or three months.”
She feels that work is really important in recognizing and focusing on what to do in our own neighbourhoods. Flying to northern Alberta is her version of helping other people. “I thought of helping others closer to home and in our own province to maintain a long-term relationship and not just for 10 days. I learned a lot in the short time, but it didn’t help the local people as much.”
Limited time and resources were constraints. “I remember going to a village in Nicaragua for a one-day clinic for six hours with four doctors and each patient needed a translator. There would be a line-up out the door to see the doctor. We weren’t set up well to refer them to see specialists or surgeons. We had limited lab things we could do. To adequately respond to things was hard because even if we gave a prescription, we didn’t know if it would be followed after we left. I like to continually work on things, rather than just a one off.”
She valued the teaching experiences. “I also like to teach people to provide for their own care in the community. We taught some of the nurses in the villages things to pass on, but it is hard in so little time.”
Dr. Boyd has done a lot of moving throughout her training and has had the opportunity to see a lot of places in Alberta.
“Camrose, through my Augustana years, fostered a place in my heart for the city. I met my husband at Augustana, so it was a place that he called home as well. That is a big attraction and retention, when both spouses can work in the same community. We picked Camrose because it worked for both of us. We also just love Camrose. It was originally bigger than I hoped for, but it also allowed me to continue with obstetrics, delivering babies. And I’m not alone here. I don’t have to be on call 365 days a year. I just returned to work from having a baby, so that is important for me as well. I wanted to work in a hospital and a clinic.”
Working in Camrose has also given her the time to continue helping others up north  and help her to do developmental endeavors.
“One of my goals in the future is to work more with The Open Door. I want to ask them and plan for what they need, rather than just responding to needs,” added Charley.
She also wants to assist new moms and victims of sexual assault as well. “I think it is important to continue to build within our own community in Camrose. The trick in a more rural community is to balance the time between work and assisting in the community.”

Camrose Police sexual assault review

By Lori Larsen

In an effort to ensure policing policies and reporting serves the greater good of the community, Camrose Police Service (CPS) conducted a comprehensive review of all sexual assaults reported from 2014 until 2017.
The completed review was presented to City council, by CPS Inspector Rene Brisson and Chief Dean LaGrange during a committee of whole meeting held on Jan. 6.
“Back in February 2017 Globe and Mail released an article that highlighted sexual assaults and unfounded rates across the province and the country,” said Brisson.
Brisson explained that the term “unfounded”, at the point of the Globe and Mail article, meant when police received a complaint of sexual assault and conducted an investigation but could not find any evidence or corroboration of the offence taking place, they were left with the scoring option of “unfounded”.
“It didn’t necessarily mean that the offence didn’t happen but that the police could not find evidence to prove it had occurred.”
According to Brisson the Globe and Mail article  brought some increased attention in North America around sexual assault and the proliferation of the Me Too Movement.
He said that the Camrose Police Commission and then CPS chief committed to looking into the issues surrounding these findings and created a review committee which began a preliminary review of all CPS sexual assault reports from 2010 until 2017, determining the manner in which the reports were classified.
“A major contributor to the varied and high number of unfounded sexual assaults across Canada was the result of limited scoring options within the Uniform Crime Report (UCR) in Stats Canada. Scoring options have since been expanded.”
The review conducted by CPS  consisted of a detailed look at over 100 sexual assault investigations. “Camrose had a very high number of “unfounded” sexual assaults, 47 per cent were deemed as unfounded.”
Since 2017 Stats Canada has changed the UCR providing police with new clearance statuses options for reported and subsequently investigated incidents.
These statuses allow police to clear an investigation as: insufficient evidence to proceed, victim/complainant declines to proceed, victim/complainant requests that no further action is taken and charges recommended but declined by crown.
From the 100 sexual assault investigations reviewed by CPS, the focus centered around the “unfounded” incidents. The statistics showed that of the unfounded rates 88 per cent of the victims were female, 94 per cent of the suspects were male, 76 per cent were reported by a third party, 24 per cent of the victims  wanted police investigation and 32 per cent of the victims were under the age of 12 years old.
“That is a significant statistic,” noted Brisson referring to the 32 per cent of victims 12-years-old and under. “We did not restrict our sexual assault review to just deal with adult sexual assaults. We reviewed every incident involving sex allegations. Many of those involved children and many of those were from known suspects–family members or extension of the family.”
Brisson indicated that since the changes in the UCR stats in 2018 the “unfounded” rate dropped to six per cent in 2018, most of which occurred because of the new options in scoring investigations.
“We looked at all sexual assault cases, not just the ones scored as “unfounded”.
Statistics indicated that 89 per cent were female victims, 94 per cent were male suspects, 74 per cent of the cases the suspect was known to victim, 30 per cent of the sexual assaults occurred in the victim’s residence and 93 per cent of the cases that were scored unfounded complied with policy.
“It was good to have that reassurance that the job being done was following procedures, but there are some things from the review that we are looking to improve upon.”
Recommendations resulting from the review included the following.
The first recommendation involved an update in CPS policies and procedures related to sexual assault investigations.
The second recommendation was for CPS to look into the viability of a Third Option when it comes to reporting an alleged offence.
“Camrose Police  Service looks at and researches what is referred to as the Third Option Program,” said Brisson clarifying by first explaining option one and two.
“With Option 1, as a survivor of sexual assault you have an option to report to police and have it investigated, similar to any victim of crime. With Option 2 there is the option of not reporting to police and declining an investigation.
“The third option allows survivors who are unsure about reporting a sexual assault to police to have forensic evidence collected and stored for a defined period of time. This allows victims time to make the decision on reporting or not without sacrificing evidence.”
The third recommendation is the implementation of file review process based on the Philadelphia model. This would involve the development of policy and procedure related to sexual assault cases that could involve a file review process that would include community partners’ collaboration, the goal of which would be to bring confidence in the investigative process and improve victim support.
The last recommendation is to increase the involvement of the Major Crimes Unit (MCU) in sexual assault investigations.
“The review revealed that 13 per cent of our sexual assault cases were investigated by MCU and we feel that number can be increased. Our MCU has detectives in it that specialize in dealing with major crime and if they were involved in more cases (involving sexual assault) there may be a better outcome.”
On a final note, Brisson said that the public may be reassured that the number of “stranger” sexual assaults in Camrose is quite low.
Council inquires
Councillor Max Lindstrand voiced concerns over the percentage of incidents involving young children and inquired as to what age these children speak for themselves and how do the police go about dealing with those situations.
“It is fair to say there is a heightened awareness when it comes to children involved in these types of occurrences,” replied Inspector Brisson. “The majority of occurrences (involving children) are reported by a third party such as grandparents reporting having observed or heard something abnormal with a grandchild. It is not necessarily indicative of something actually occurring, specifically sexual assault, but the police then take on the investigation.  Historically, if the police could not determine something happened it would be scored as unfounded.”
With the new options on scoring files, Brisson suspected those rates would change.
Chief LaGrange added that the Me Too Movement has brought about more awareness surrounding the crime of sexual assault. “A lot of child sexual assaults are historical. When the child gets to be of age where they can speak for themselves, it is reported then and that is investigated just as thoroughly as if it happened yesterday.”
Councillor Agnes Hoveland asked how Camrose’s number of sexual assault cases compare to other municipalities.
Brisson responded that compared to populations of 100,000, CPS sits slightly below average.
Hoveland also inquired about what using the Philadelphia Model would look like in Camrose.
Brisson said. “With the Philadelphia model involving external partners  having access to police files, it would require those participating partners, such as CDSS, to be vetted first. Having external partners involved in the files (sexual assault) provides peace of mind to the public that someone other than police are reviewing them and sharing an extra lens, which provides a different perspective and they could also be advocates in the community.” Brisson said at this point it is not known which external partners would be sitting on that committee.
City of Camrose manager Malcolm Boyd inquired as to whether or not Camrose was seeing any decline or increase in the number of reported sexual assaults, aside from what changes in the reporting statuses is indicating. “Did we experience any other trends in those five years.”
Brisson said. “No we haven’t seen any concerning trends but we do see some fluctuating statistics year over year.”
Boyd also inquired as to how reported sexual assaults occurring at the Big Valley Jamboree (BVJ) effects Camrose statistics.
Brisson replied “Based on experience and anecdotally there are some reports based specifically from BVJ, which also changes year to year. The challenge  with BVJ and, specifically the report of sexual assaults, is that several are reported well after the fact. With the (BVJ) population only here for four days then leaving it makes it a challenge to investigate. In total, including after the fact reported, there are usually two to five.”
Brisson indicated that during last year’s BVJ event there was only three  complaints. “It would not be considered epidemic.” He added that sexual assault crime is typically severely under-reported.
A complete copy of the Review of Sexual Assault Investigations 2014-17 can be viewed on the CPS website at or is available upon request at Camrose Police Service.

Kodiaks steal a victory from Bandits

By Murray Green

Not very many teams in the Alberta Junior Hockey League can say they have beaten the number one ranked team in the nation, the Brooks Bandits.
However, Camrose is one of three teams that have won against Brooks when the Kodiaks edged the Bandits 6-5 on Jan. 4.
Camrose scored the opening two tallies coming off the play of Cody Laskosky.
The Bandits then rallied and notched five of the next six goals. Brett Wieschorster added the lone tally for the Kodiaks.
However, Camrose exploded for three markers in the third to complete the comeback. Lynden Grandberg, Wieschorster with his second of the night, and Laskosky completed his hat trick in the final frame.
Goalie Griffin Bowerman held the net with 34 saves, while Camrose fired 27 on the Brooks’ net.
Camrose also rallied late to take a 4-3 victory over the Lloydminster Bobcats the night before.
After a Bobcats goal, Camrose claimed the lead with scores from Damon Zimmer and Jarret Timmerman. Lloydminster tied the game in the second period.
The Bobcats scored first in the final period before Lane Brockhoff tied the game again. Then Connor Brock notched the winner with five minutes left in the contest.
Goalie Cole Tisdale stopped 32 of 35 shots he faced, while the Kodiaks recorded 25 shots on goal.
Camrose also lost 8-1 to the Okotoks Oilers on Jan. 7 to end its win streak at five games.
Brock netted the only Kodiaks goal late in the middle frame. Bowerman started the game in net and made 11 out of 14 saves. Tisdale stopped 15 of 20 shots directed his way.
After a three game road swing, Camrose will host the Spruce Grove Saints on Jan. 25, the Calgary Canucks on Jan. 31 and the Drayton Valley Thunder on Feb. 1. All three games begin at 7 p.m. in the Encana Arena.
Bear facts
Robert Kincaid of the Kodiaks will play on Team West at the Prospects Game on Jan. 14 in Hamilton.

Peewee Vikings goalie advances to Alberta Winter Games

By Murray Green

Goalie Ethan Edwards of the Camrose peewee double-A Vikings was selected to the 2020 Alberta Winter games Zone 8 roster.
The Winter Games will be held from Feb. 14 to 17 in Airdrie. The age group for hockey is U15 (born between Sept. 1, 2004 and Dec. 31, 2005 or later).
Emmytt Yukowski of Tofield is also on the same team.
Zone 1 head coach is Brent Kranzler of Stettler, a former Camrose Minor Hockey player.
Team Alberta
Twenty players were selected to the roster of Team Alberta to compete in the Western Canada U16 Championships. The Western U16 was held in late-October in Calgary, with Alberta competing against teams from the other three western provinces.
Former Camrose Minor Hockey player Grayson Gotaas was a defenceman on the 2019 WHL Cup Team Alberta U16 squad. He played five games and scored a goal.
Gotaas is currently playing for the Sherwood Park Kings Midget triple-A team and has three goals and seven assists after 20 games.
He also played three games for the AJHL’s Bonnyville Pontiacs.
Reid MacKay from Irma was also on Team Alberta and earned an assist in five games.

Hockey Vikings host Red Deer Kings at Encana

10 vikings hockey bc
Cody Fiala and Evan Warmington of the Augustana Vikings storm the Briercrest Clippers net on this scoring play. Briercrest led 2-0 before the Vikings rallied to win 5-2, Jan. 11.

By Murray Green

The Augustana Vikings are in fifth place with a 6-8 record in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference with the top six teams qualifying for playoffs.
The Vikings host the Red Deer Kings on Jan. 17 with a 7:30 p.m. start time in the Encana Arena in regular season action.
The women’s Vikings are in third place with an 8-4 record. Medicine Hat is hosting the playoffs.
The men’s Vikings are in fifth place with a 3-9 record. Lethbridge is hosting the playoffs.
Augustana hosts the NAIT Ooks on Jan. 17 at 6 and 8 p.m. in next league action.
The women’s Vikings are in third place with an 8-4 record. Medicine Hat is hosting the playoffs.
The men’s Vikings are in second place with a 9-3 record. Augustana is hosting the playoffs.
Augustana hosts the NAIT Ooks on Jan. 18 at 6 and 8 p.m. in the next league home game.
The Vikings ladies’ rink and mixed team are preparing for the winter regionals on Jan. 24 to 26, 2020 hosted by NAIT.
The ladies’ team has a 5-1 record and is in first place. The mixed team has a 2-3 record and is in fifth place.
Provincials are set for Feb. 28 to 29 with Portage hosting the championships in Lac La Biche. read more

Expanding dialysis care in Wetaskiwin

By Murray Green

More local patients with chronic kidney disease will be able to access dialysis at the Wetaskiwin Hospital and Care Centre. The satellite hemodialysis unit expanded its hours to offer additional appointment times.
Dialysis is now offered an additional four hours per day, three days a week, bringing the operating hours of the unit to 7 a.m. to 11:15 p.m., Monday to Saturday. The expanded hours are already in effect.
The extra service hours have provided space for nine additional patients from the Wetaskiwin and Camrose area to receive the care they need closer to home.
“I’m very pleased more patients from the area will have access to critical kidney care in their community,” said Tyler Shandro, Alberta’s Minister of Health. “Thank you to Alberta Health Services and all the staff involved for expanding the hours of the dialysis clinic and being so responsive to local needs so fewer patients have to travel away from family and home to get this life-saving care. This work strengthens our public health system and puts the needs of patients front and centre.”
Hemodialysis is the process of cleansing the blood of toxins and excess fluid when normal kidney function is reduced. A patient’s blood is filtered through a dialyzer and returned to the body. Treatment, which can take four hours, is often required three times a week.
“We understand the importance and benefits of receiving care and treatment as close to home as possible,” said Dr. Verna Yiu, president and CEO of Alberta Health Services (AHS). “AHS is continually monitoring and assessing the needs of dialysis patients across the province, and we are pleased to be offering these additional spaces in Wetaskiwin and providing enhanced care for our patients.”
Dialysis is offered in other communities within AHS Central Zone, including Red Deer, Drayton Valley, Drumheller, Rocky Mountain House, Olds, Stettler, Vegreville and Lloydminster.
An aging population, rising diabetes rates leading to renal failure, and patients living longer on dialysis due to medical advancements, are all factors contributing to increased demand for dialysis across the province.
“We know that travelling for medical needs can be a burden for patients and their families. Receiving treatment close to home improves quality of life for our patients,” said Tracy Delorme, patient care manager with Alberta Kidney Care–North. “We are very grateful to all the stakeholders involved in making this expansion possible.”
Alberta Kidney Care–North provides assessment, treatment and follow-up for people with kidney problems in a geographical area that includes central and northern Alberta.
The program also provides other treatments for kidney failure, including peritoneal dialysis, home hemodialysis and conservative care, which enables patients who may not tolerate dialysis to enjoy the best quality of life possible without hemodialysis.
For more information about Alberta Kidney Care services, including hemodialysis, call Health Link at 811.

Velselka celebrates culture

12 veselka dancers girls
Dancers from the senior group left to right, Malia Pattullo, Sydney Matiushyk and Janessa Burr shared their excitement and passion for the Camrose Veselka Dance club and the friendships they have formed.

By Lori Larsen

For 35 years the Camrose Veselka Ukrainian Dance Society (CVUDS) has been celebrating culture and tradition and passing the baton down through generations.
Founded in 1983 by a group of parents who wanted to preserve Ukrainian culture and tradition for generations to come, the CVUDS a non-profit society, is now 40 members strong ranging in ages three-years-old to adults.
The club separates the dancers into five basic age groups including up to age six, seven to nine, ten to twelve, 14 to 17 (senior dancers) and adult dancers.
Through its goal of preserving Ukrainian folk dance and culture, CVUDS provides its members with professional training and development to encourage the highest levels of personal achievement combined with a fun and exciting way to stay fit and enjoy social connections.
Senior dancers 17 year-olds Malia Pattullo, Sydney Matiushyk and Janessa Burr talk, with unbridled excitement and energy, about being a member of CVUDS.
“I have stayed in dance because it is like therapy for me,” said Sydney a Ukrainian dancer for 14 years. “It makes me feel so good. I let everything go when I am dancing, it just doesn’t matter. I am with my friends and we have a great time. We not only learn so much about dance, but we are exercising, getting our heart rates up and having a good time.”
Malia, who has also been dancing for 14 years,  couldn’t agree more and since moving to Camrose both her and Sydney have been dancing in the same group (9 years) and are very close friends. “It’s just so much fun and we are all so close, even though the ages range from 14 to 17 in our group (senior dancers).”
Janessa, who has been dancing for 10 years, said the best part of the club is the friendships and the fun they all have despite being from different schools, communities and in her case cultural background. “We have an age range in our group from 14-17. But it doesn’t affect how close we are as a dance group. You need to be close and connected and we are–we work really well as a team even though there is that age difference.”
While Malia and Sydney come from a Ukrainian background, Janessa has no Ukrainian background but has totally adopted the tradition and ethnicity of not only the dance but the whole Ukrainian culture.
“I enjoy how upbeat and fast it (Ukrainian dance) is,” said Janessa. “You can not be grumpy while you are dancing. It is such a happy environment it is a good reason to get out of  the house and have fun.”
Sydney’s passion for the club and the culture was very apparent. “Dance has been a huge part of my life since I was three-years-old. It is very important to me and with Ukrainian dance I get to infuse the culture which makes it very special to me.
“It is an art. We are expressing ourselves creatively while exercising. There are really no set rules, we are taught techniques but generally we have freedom of expression.”
All three of the girls laughed when recalling the Christmas dance they created this past year to the music of Mariah Carey.
“We work together to create our dance,” said Malia, and they all agreed that while the coach provides the basics, training and techniques the group is encouraged to add their own flare and personal touches to make the dance their own.
Janessa added that because the dances come from different regions of the Ukraine with their own styles they can learn the specifics but bring in some young ideas and new generation music.
With ages ranging from three to as mature as 75 to 80 the club knows no boundaries. “The adult group has a wide variety of skill level but they all are dancing and happy. Some are 18-year-olds that just came out of the senior dance group and there are  even babas (grandmothers).”
When asked what one of the most exciting parts of being a Veselka Ukrainian dancer was, the answer was unanimous.
“Malanka for sure,” laughed Sydney. “There is dance and food and more dance and more food.’
Malia piped in. “We get to perform and eat food (traditional Ukrainian food which all three girls admitted they know how to prepare, specifically the famous perogies.) Malanka is a family event right from the little ones to the babas and dedas.”
Besides getting together with family and friends Malanka provides an opportunity for the dancers to perform in an atmosphere geared at celebrating the culture and togetherness.
This is also a chance for the parents, specifically mothers, to actually watch their children perform. As all three girls noted their mothers are usually backstage at performances and competitions helping the dancers prepare and rarely get to see them dance, at least full sets.
“Our moms are great tools,” smiled Janessa referring to the vital role they play in helping the dancers get ready, change and get onto the stage. “But they rarely get to watch our dances.”
Every year the Ukrainian society celebrates Ukrainian New Year, Malanka with family and friends coming together in an evening filled with dance, song, food and fellowship.
Malanka commemorates the feast day of Saint Melania the Younger and historically, the night in the Ukraine saw carolers going from house to house playing pranks or acting out small skits with a bachelor dressed in a woman’s clothing leading the troop.
While the tradition now varies from community to community as passed down through generations, the idea is still the same.
Culture and tradition are a integral part of CVUDS. It is fuzed into the lives of the dancers through more than just the performances. The members get to learn through stories from generations, cooking bees (perogies) and have also been fortunate enough to make the journey to the Ukraine.
Both Malia and Sydney visited in 2013 and in the summer of 2018 all three girls made the trip along with other members of CVUDS.
“It was really cool to experience different cultures and their dance,” said Sydney. “It is amazing that we get to travel while we are so young and experience all this life.”
All three girls expressed sincere gratitude for the opportunities they have been given through CVUDS and hope that as they move forward in their futures they are able to continue being part of Ukrainian dance in one way or another.
The baton continues to be handed down with Malia and Janessa who both have younger siblings who dance in Veselka. As for Sydney, she was the younger sibling following in her older siblings “dance”steps.
For these three extraordinary young girls the future looks bright and there is no doubt that whatever they put their minds to, the experience they gained through CVUDS will serve them well. read more

Camrose Camerata warms up winter with Landscapes concert

By Murray Green

Camrose Camerata presents Landscapes, a choral concert of songs depicting winter, cold places, warm times and holy spaces.
The concert takes place at Messiah Lutheran Church in the sanctuary, at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 19.
Over the years, Camerata has gained a reputation for presenting great music from a wide variety of styles and this concert is no exception. From contemporary pieces by Canadian Susan Aglukark, to country music legend Dolly Parton, from Latin church music to joyful songs in Spanish and haunting works in Estonian, Camerata’s Landscapes concert will have something for everyone.
Special guest will be Maya Rathnavalu, who  will play flute for the choir for the Carly Simon song “Let the River Run” and it will also feature the usual excellent group of singers with conductor Joy-Anne Murphy at the helm, and Carolyn Olson supporting with her piano artistry.
Camrose Camerata was also winner of first prize in the inaugural Alberta Excellence Choral Class, 19 and over, in the Alberta Provincial Music Festival in June 2019, a new award category created to highlight exceptional Alberta talent through the Alberta Music Festival Association.
“Our choir is thrilled to have won this prestigious new award and are excited to share with Camrose just what all the hype is about,” said Joy-Anne.
Tickets are available through choir members or at the door. For more information or to reserve tickets, contact 780-672-3372.

EmBellish rings in joy for listeners

By Murray Green

The chimes of handbells not only brings joy to listeners, but it also soothes the soul.
Camrose United Church (CUC) is home to EmBellish, the community handbell organization led by music director Darryl Dewalt.
“The most important thing is that EmBellish is its own community. That is the attraction. Everyone has a lot of fun playing. The other thing is that people like to hear bells. It adds a different music perspective for the community. We try to play at seniors’ lodges because it lifts their spirits and they are thrilled when we come to play,” shared Darryl. “It is as good for us, because it is as much fun as it is for them.”
EmBellish members can be found rehearsing songs on most Thursday evenings from 7 until 8:30 p.m. at CUC.
The members, about 12 plus Darryl, play some Sundays at the church, as well as at seniors’ lodges like Deer Meadows during the winter.
“We actually have one more person than we have positions. Sometimes we may double-up on the higher octaves. We rarely have everyone for rehearsals, so they take turns on having a set position. The extra is used in the position that is most needed,” explained Darryl.
The group was smaller in the past because the members were limited in the amount of bells they had. The newest bell is a year old. “We have quite a range of experience. The longest serving members have been with us for almost 30 years and that goes down to someone who has been with us for two years.”
EmBellish rang in the Christmas season to the Camrose community.
“Ringing outside at the tree lighting was such a good experience that we decided we will play outside on the lawn for one of our last practices in the spring,” said an excited Darryl. “Standing in the snow and playing was certainly a first. Everyone was thrilled to be a part of that. Santa Claus gave me a candy cane to conduct with, but not everyone knew that because they couldn’t see me well enough. I was amazed with the amount of people who turned up to hear us.”
Darryl has experience in playing several instruments other than the church pipe organ every Sunday morning. He also conducts the choir and plays the piano at several functions within the church.
“EmBellish is something totally different than other music and choirs. If you have a band or choir, you often have other people covering the same position. In handbells, everyone has their notes to play and others rely on them to perform in order to move on. That is a real challenge. It is easier for people to play handbells who don’t have a musical background or as much experience in music. It is good for people who don’t want to be in a choir or a community band,” said Darryl.
“EmBellish adds another part to our worship and is very engaging. It is also visual for people to see. For members, it is a way to bring people together from other congregations and as we get older, it becomes our mental aerobics. It is very physically and teamwork oriented, and very collaborative. None of us can do this by ourselves. We depend on each other,” said handbell member Colleen Nelson. “Our church is fortunate to have a music director to offer great music, even besides EmBellish. To have this high quality of leadership and ability is just wonderful.”

Congress bringing laughs with Callieou

By Murray Green

The Canadian Bull Congress isn’t just about showing prize animals. It’s a great place to laugh and pick up your spirits during the Taste of Beef Banquet on Jan. 24, at the Camrose Regional Exhibition.
Nationally known comedian Lars Callieou will be on stage to provide entertainment after the steak challenge and banquet.
He has been overseas to entertain the troops on three occasions (Kuwait, IRAQ, Kyrgyzstan, Dubai, and Abu Dhabi) and has a weekly comedy radio show on CJSR 88.5 FM that is a two-time Canadian Comedy Award nominee. He was selected as the Best of the Fest at the 2018 SLO Comedy Festival in San Luis Obispo, California.
Callieou made his first appearance at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival in Australia and you may have seen him on the CBC’s Debaters and on television.
He claims to be an overnight success in just 15 years. Callieou has appeared at the Just for Laughs Festival and has a comedy special currently airing on The Comedy Network.
He was the third Canadian to make the finals of both the San Francisco and Seattle International Comedy Competitions.

Barber cuts a fine version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s hit songs

By Murray Green

Terry Barber, one of the top countertenor voices in Canada, will be performing the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber on the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre stage on Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m.
He sings show-stopping hits from 10 of the world’s most beloved musicals, performing his own versions of songs from Cats, The Phantom of the Opera and Jesus Christ Superstar.
“It’s amazing to be able to come out to Alberta to perform. I have 80 performances on this tour and 29 are in Alberta,” said an excited Terry from Consort. “I went to the arts conference and had no idea what opportunities there were or what the response was going to be. I’m honoured to be able to meet new people.”
Internationally acclaimed countertenor, Terry is known for his extraordinary range, both vocally and stylistically. Past member of the Grammy-winning group Chanticleer, Terry has been a soloist for the best venues around the world and has been a soloist on recordings for every major record label, with a variety of artists  from Madonna to the London Philharmonic.
“I like his (Webber) work because it covers all of the vocal ranges. I will sing his most popular songs and a few of the most requested songs from my regular tour. Webber’s work also offers a wide range of music from opera to rock,” shared Terry.
“I perform his music because it suits my range of vocals and Jesus Christ Superstar is the longest running musical on Broadway, so it is favourite for a lot of people. It is easy to choose a writer like Webber because it offers a wide range of vocals and emotion,” added Terry.
“I have a secret weapon on tour. Her name is Michelle Foster and she is a great pianist with a secret talent. That is all I’m going to say,” said Terry as a teaser to the upcoming show. “People have been enjoying her addition to the tour.”

Bullough directs classic The Wind in the Willows

17 wind willows
Augustana drama students, from left to right, Keegan Will, Racquel Deveau, Kyra Gusdal, Bennett Wilson, Kris Bergman and Daniel Wiltzen help decide the future in the classic tale The Wind In The Willows. The play will be held on Jan. 22 to 26 at the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre.

By Murray Green

The Augustana drama department will be presenting the classic tale and magical world of Badger, Mole, Rat and Toad in The Wind in the Willows.
“We are following the original Kenneth Grahame story that was adapted by Paul Sills that ended up on Broadway,” said director Chris Bullough, who took over from  Paul “Sparky” Johnson because he was under the weather.
Bullough is an actor, writer and instructor at both the University of Alberta and Augustana.
“I came on as a sessional last semester to teach and they brought me back to take over from Paul. I’m always looking for opportunities to direct. I had a chance to meet the students last semester. I knew what play he picked and I was thinking about asking to be an assistant director, but with two children and living in Edmonton, I thought I better not,” shared Chris. “I have a story theatre approach to my own work and use devices to tell the story. Paul Sills was a huge improv teacher and I got my start with improv.”
The play will be shown in the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre with matinees for school children and evening shows. The play hits the stage on Wednesday, Jan. 22 to Sunday, Jan. 26. On Jan. 22 and 23 the shows begin at 12:30 p.m. On Jan. 24 and 25 the performance starts at 7:30 p.m. and the final show will be held on Jan. 26 at 2:30 p.m.
“I had a chance to speak with Sparky and the students, so I took what they were telling me and added into my own hopper because you have to bring your own self to it as well,” explained Chris.
The drama class normally has a few months to prepare for shows, but since the move to three week courses, all that has changed.
“It doubles the pressure because you only have three weeks from start to finish. Honestly, the senior students have the experience and the passion to really help me out. They have been great at set design and costumes after only a week,” added Chris.
The course has about 20 students that will either be on stage or behind the scenes. “I’m really happy to have the students that I have,” Chris said. “When I was a child, I used to watch the stop motion animation on television and I remember being fascinated about these animals in Edwardian costumes. I read the book to prepare for this and it portrays humanity, and how we bumble along to make best use of what we have at the same time of honouring the beauty of nature,” said Chris. “We get to see life through a lens and animals, a step back to look  at humanity and see how beautiful and fragile it all is.”
The play is full of fun and comedy, in a British way. “We get to laugh at ourselves and have fun. Mr. Toad goes on about the fascination of the motor vehicle and back then (1908) it was such a novelty. I’m having fun being re-introduced to the story.”
This timeless classic, written by Grahame, began as a bedtime story he told to his son, Allister. The story takes place in Edwardian England at a time when horse and wagon were competing with the automobile. It combines the wisdom and curiosity of the animals of The Riverbank and the Wild Wood with the people of the Wild World.
The action centres around Ratty, Mole and Badger trying to get a handle on Mr. Toad as he is determined to drive himself to ruin through his obsession with automobiles. This family play is suitable for all ages.
“Sills was the original director of The Second City and the originator of Story Theatre on Broadway. When Paul passed in 2008, they dimmed the lights on Broadway as a tribute,” said Sparky. read more

Sing-a-long with Grease movie

By Murray Green

You sang along in the movie theatre when the original show came out. Now you are encouraged to Sing-a-long to Grease at the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre on Friday, Jan. 17 beginning at 7:30 p.m.
Ever wanted to know what it’s like to be a T-bird or a Pink Lady, but never quite felt cool enough to pull it off? Well, now is your chance to don those pink jackets, grease up those quiffs and let your inhibitions go for an evening where you are the stars.
The evening begins with your Sing-a-long Grease host leading a vocal warm-up before they show you how to use your free fun pack during the film and suggest some appropriate heckles and accompanying actions. Then just sit back and watch Danny and Sandy and the gang, while singing (and dancing) along to the lyrics on the screen. It couldn’t be easier…or more fun. Fancy dress is strongly encouraged and full audience participation essential.

Thunderbird fun is only thing restored

By Murray Green

Darcy Lischynski of Bashaw owns a two-door 1966 Ford Thunderbird.
“I found this car behind a fence with a for sale sign on it in Lacombe. Its a true Canadian car and I’m the fourth owner. It only has 128,600 miles on it and it is a survivor,” explained Darcy.
“It is unrestored and I have basically done nothing to the Thunderbird except change points and fluids. It was in this good of shape when I found it. Although it is a Canadian car, it has never seen snow. It has always been garaged.”
The fourth generation of the Ford Thunderbird was a personal luxury car produced by Ford for the 1964 to 1966 model years. This generation of the Thunderbird was restyled in favour of a more squared-off, formal look.
The Thunderbird’s sporty image with the standard 390 cubic inch 300 horsepower V8 engine was in looks. The heavier models slowed the car down. The softly sprung suspension allowed considerable body lean, wallow, and float on curves and bumps.
“When I was in high school, a buddy of mine had a 1972 Thunderbird and we had a lot of good fun in that. I had a 1977 El Camino at the time and the Thunderbird was in a lot better shape than the El Camino. I just couldn’t say no to it,” recalled Darcy.
“Thunderbird means fun to me. I like Thunderbirds better than Mustangs because there are a lot of Mustangs still on the road. I probably put two or three thousand miles on it a year. I go to car shows and it is my grocery getter. I’ve taken it on some long road trips and I’m not scared to drive it,” added Darcy.
“The nice thing is I don’t have a lot of money into it, so I’m not scared to drive it. I didn’t want a show car that you have to trailer around. I wanted a driver.”
The revised model was initially offered as a hardtop, convertible, Sports Roadster with dealer-installed tonneau cover and wire wheels, and Landau with vinyl roof, simulated Landau irons, and wood grain interior appointments. The 1964 Thunderbird was the only car of this generation to have the word Thunderbird spelled out on the front hood instead of a chrome emblem. The only transmission available was the Cruise-O-Matic MX three-speed automatic.
“The 1966 has a 390 engine with a four-barrel, so it goes pretty good. The cars came with a 390 or a 428 motor. This one is rated about 300 horsepower  and the 428 was rated at 315, so not a whole lot of difference,” shared Darcy.
“The Swing Away steering wheel can swing sideways. It has a Mercury speedometer and all of the windows are powered. Even the little vent window is powered. For a 1966, it has a lot of extras including a huge trunk. It has full instrumentation, a three-speed automatic, AM-FM cassette and sequential taillights.”
Some repairs on the passenger side door and new seats are the first things that would be restored. “One day I’d like to put a new interior in it. The foam in the seats are gone. I have to sit on a pillow. The nice thing about Thunderbirds is that I can get parts or supplies out of the States quite easily,” said Darcy.

For 1966, the 390 cubic inch V8’s power was increased to 315 horsepower. The larger 428 cubic inch V-8 became optional, rated at 345 gross horsepower and providing a notable improvement in zero to 60 acceleration to about nine seconds. All models featured a new front clip. A flatter hood, re-shaped front fenders, new headlight buckets, new egg crate grille with large Thunderbird emblem, new bumper guards, a single bumper bar, and painted roll pan replaced the previous two model year’s two-piece front bumper. The rear taillights were revised, now a three-piece unit going the full width across the rear, the backup light now located in the centre section replaced the formerly rear roll pan mounted lamps. A new Town Hardtop model was offered, featured a roof with blind quarter panels for a more ‘formal’ look (at the cost of rear visibility). The Landau was replaced by the blind quarter formal roofed Town Landau, which retained the previous model’s padded roof and landau S-bars. It became by far the best-selling model, accounting for 35,105 of the 1966 model’s 69,176 sales.
A green 1966 Thunderbird convertible was prominently featured in the 1991 film Thelma and Louise, starring Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis, a red convertible was featured in the 1983 film The Outsiders.

Police remind residents lock it up

By Lori Larsen

Camrose Police Service are once again reminding residents to lock up their vehicles and other property to avoid being the victim of theft.
Two separate incidents of vehicle theft occurring in Camrose recently reiterate the importance of ensuring your vehicles are secured.
On Jan. 7 at 6:30 a.m., a male contacted Camrose Police to advise that his green 2004 Ford pick-up truck had been stolen from outside his residence where he had left it idling and unattended.
Upon further investigation, CPS learned that two firearms had been left inside the unlocked vehicle. A short time later, police learned that the stolen vehicle the suspect was driving drove into the ditch, east of Camrose. The suspect was provided a ride back into Camrose by a good samaritan.
Police immediately attended the area the suspect was reported last seen by a witness and, although the suspect was gone, CPS members were able to track the individual back to a residence on 51 Avenue in the 5600 block.
Outside the residence, police observed two males approaching a vehicle with a stolen license plate. While arresting both men for possession of stolen property, a third male exited the building; he matched the description of the suspect from the stolen truck. This suspect was subsequently arrested for theft.
The first suspect, a 27-year-old male from Saddle Lake who was responsible for the theft of the truck, was charged with theft, possession of stolen property, two counts of failing to comply with his probation order, operating a motor vehicle while prohibited and operating an uninsured motor vehicle. A bail hearing was conducted and the suspect was released by a justice of the peace on a $2,500 no cash release order.
The second suspect, a 30-year-old male from Camrose, was found to be in possession of a quantity of methamphetamine, cocaine and fentanyl. He was charged with three counts of possession of a controlled substance, possession of stolen property and failing to comply with his conditions. He was later released on an appearance notice.
The third suspect, a 28-year-old male from Saddle Lake who had two outstanding warrants, was charged with possession of stolen property. He was remanded into custody after failing to pay the outstanding fine on his Form 21 warrant.
On a separate incident, later on the morning of Jan. 7, CPS members were  advised of a grey Ford F250 which had been stolen from the casino and was last believed to be headed westbound into Camrose.
Police were able to locate and follow the vehicle from a distance, while additional police members positioned themselves to conduct a traffic stop. When the vehicle completed a left hand turn from 48th Avenue onto 73rd Street, police activated the emergency lights on the police vehicle.
The driver stopped the stolen vehicle and fled on foot but was quickly arrested by police. Upon further investigation, it was determined that the male suspect had stolen another pick-up truck from Penhold, prior to exchanging that vehicle with the truck he stole in Camrose.
A 24-year-old male from the Red Deer area, a prolific property offender in central Alberta with previous convictions of theft of vehicles, faces 22 charges which include two counts of theft of vehicles, four counts of possession of stolen property, two counts of mischief, two counts of resisting arrest, two counts of driving an uninsured vehicle, operating a motor vehicle while prohibited, possession of break-in tools, and eight counts of failing to comply with his conditions. He remains in custody with a first appearance in Camrose provincial court on Jan. 15.
While both of these occurrences ended with the vehicles being immediately recovered by Camrose Police Service and suspects charged the same day the theft occurred, police want to remind residents the importance of doing everything possible to secure their property.
With the onset of colder temperatures, the urge to leave vehicles running is greater, however doing so without taking necessary precautions such as locking the vehicle, may not end as positively as the aforementioned cases.
Assist the police by being proactive and lock up your vehicles and property.

Name that item, mystery tools found in house clean

21 unnamed tools
Three mystery items have Booster staff and a few other people baffled.  The top item is believed to be a skirt hem marker; however, the two bottom items are still in question.

By Lori Larsen

Have you ever found an item in a trunk, drawer, cupboard or other space that you were cleaning out and wondered, “What exactly is this and what was it used for?”
For Killam resident Ralph Sorenson, three such items had him somewhat befuddled. While cleaning out some possessions of his sister, who passed away mid-2019, he discovered three items that he just couldn’t put a name to or begin to figure out their purpose.
Hoping he might find some answers among the staff at The Camrose Booster, Ralph brought the items in for us to have a look.
A photo of the item was posted on Camrose NOW! and accompanies this article.
One of the staff members was able to research a patent number on the one item and identified it as a sewing skirt measurement device. The other two items are still a mystery.
If you think you might have an idea of the identity and use of either of the other two items, slip us an email at news@camrose, post a message on the Camrose NOW! app or on our website at read more

Rotary speaker series focuses on agriculture

By Murray Green

Local dairy farm entrepreneur Jake Vermeer will be the guest speaker as the Camrose Rotary Club is bringing its popular Speaker Series on Jan. 20.
The meetings are open to the public beginning at 11:45 a.m. at the Camrose Resort Casino. If you can’t make lunch, the speakers begin at 12:45 p.m. The speaker series is at no charge, but there is a fee for lunch.
Jake has an animal science diploma from Lakeland College and is a director on the Camrose Regional Exhibition board.
Alberta is home to one of the most technologically advanced dairy farms in western Canada. Vermeer  Dairy, located near Camrose, is a second-generation family farm. Immigrating from Holland in 1993, Maryn and Ans and their three children started with only 43 cows. Nearly 30 years later and the farm is one of the largest in Alberta with about 600 milking cows. The growth on the farm was attributed to Jake’s expertise for working smarter, not harder.
The family has always put each cow’s comfort at the top of the priority list and they help achieve this through technology. For example, each of their cows is fitted with a Fit Bit, they monitor their cows remotely via cell phone and the ultra modern barn is computer-controlled.
The Fit Bit monitors how the animal chews its cud. An alert to their phone notifies the family of any changes in an animal’s rumination cycle. This could be an early sign the cow is ill. This means the team is able to treat the cows sooner and thus keep the cows healthier.
The family also checks their herd with a quick view on their phone. No matter where they are, they can always keep a close eye on their animals through remote viewing thanks to cameras set up on various pens that are connected to an app.
A fully automated ventilation system is computer controlled. From changing fan speeds, opening barn doors to turning on the water misters, the technology to keep their animals comfortable is high tech.
The farm is also a sustainable source of employment for 13 residents. By supporting local jobs, the farm helps sustain the community around them and improve the economic prosperity of rural Alberta. About 17,000 jobs are sustained by the Alberta dairy industry. They also source the vast majority of their feed from local grain farmers. This ensures that when dairy does well, other types of agriculture succeed and grow too.
The family continues to invest in Alberta. They recently expanded their facility because they are confident in the future of agriculture in the province. By housing more cows, the farm is able to produce more homegrown Alberta milk.
Ingenuity is shaping the future of their farm. Vermeers are looking at installing colour-picture technology that takes a photo of milk and is able to provide detailed information about its composition, that right now can only be done by a lab in Edmonton. They are also on their second year of biodegradable plastic that turns their field into a greenhouse. The result? Better feed for their cows from improved varieties of corn rarely grown in our harsh Alberta climate.
Vermeer Dairy is an Alberta success story. This modern dairy is leading the pack on finding progressive ways to farm.
On Feb. 3, D’Arcy Hilgartner of Hilgartner Farms near Camrose will speak on From the Family Farm to the Corporate Farm.
On Feb 24, Will Pattison, an agricultural economist from around Kingman will discuss The Economics of Farming–Then and Now.
Camrose Daybreak Club will have a speaker at 5:45 p.m. at the Camrose Resort Casino.
On Feb. 10, Dr. Demetres Tryphonopoulos, the dean and executive officer of the University of Alberta Augustana Campus will bring news from the new dean. This is also Cadet Night.
On March 16, Cliff Drever and Dave Solverson of rural Camrose will both talk about Ranching and the Beef Industry.
On March 23, Don Ruzika of Ruzika Sunrise Farm near Killam will share his views about The Value of Eco Systems in Agriculture.
On April 6, Steve Snider of Little Red Hen Mills Farm near New Norway will talk about Farming the Organic Way.

Keeping landowners informed

By Lori Larsen

While many rural property owners still allow hunting on their private property, Camrose Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Branch (FWEB) reminds those landowners that guides and outfitters must obtain permission authorizing access from the landholder for conducting those guiding services on that land.
If permission is then granted by the landowner the guide/outfitter must carry on their person the landholder’s name, address (or legal land location of landholder’s residence) and telephone number.
Failing to do so can result in charges and a substantial fine, which is exactly what occurred with a Camrose and area guide.
“In this instance, a guide approached a local farmer and did not advise him that he was a guide nor that he would be taking four paying, out-of-country clients on a goose hunt,” noted Camrose FWEB District Officer Lorne Rinkel. “He further mislead the farmer by stating he was a friend of the farmer’s son and had worked out a hunt opportunity with him.”
Rinkel said the next morning the farmer’s son discovered the suspect guide and clients shooting out in his father’s field so the son immediately placed a telephone call to Camrose FWEB.
An investigation ensued resulting in the charges being laid and during a hearing held on Feb. 21, 2018 the accused guide/outfitter plead guilty to one count under Section 95(4) (a) of the Alberta Wildlife Act Regulations for illegally providing guiding services on private property without prior authorization from the land owner. The guide, from California, and the outfitting corporation itself were also charged.
“When the Justice inquired as to how much money was made from the illegal, one morning hunt, they were advised that each of the four clients paid $1,000 per day to hunt geese,” explained Rinkel. “The Justice stated that no money should be made from an illegal hunt and assessed a $4,000 fine for the half-day hunt.”
Landowners may not be aware of the fact that guides and outfitters must identify themselves as such and that they intend on accessing their land to conduct a commercial hunt.
If a landowner still chooses to grant permission for the  guide/outfitter to guide a hunt on their land, they are advised to inquire as to how many clients the guide/outfitter will be guiding, set the duration of the access granted, possibly issue a written permission slip and liability waivers. The landowners can further set out any and all other conditions that they see fit, such as vehicle access, garbage collection, and the excavation of hunting blinds.
Rinkel also advised that it is illegal for landowners to accept payments or compensation for allowing access as this could constitute “paid access” which is contrary to the Wildlife Act and could result in charges against the landowner.
Laws and regulations are set to not only protect landowners, but ensure continual protection of Alberta’s natural resources.
For more information on hunting regulations, visit the 2019 Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations at or to report any suspected poaching, or serious public land abuse, call the toll-free Report A Poacher line at 1-800-642-3800 or visit Both the telephone line and webpage can also be used for emergent wildlife incidents.

Viking break and enter

By Lori Larsen

  With property crime in rural areas on the rise, RCMP reminds residents to lock up all their property and report any suspicious behaviour or activity by either calling the local detachment or 9-1-1.
On Jan. 3, at approximately 3:15 a.m., Viking RCMP received a call regarding a break and enter in progress at a rural residence.
The homeowner reported two males were visible outside the property and had broken into a sea can and shed on the property. The males were also engaged in the theft of fuel on the property as well.
Viking RCMP intercepted a vehicle occupied by the suspects shortly after it left the property. The suspect driver originally failed to stop for police; however, both males were arrested when the vehicle stopped at a property within the Town of Viking limits.
 A 22-year-old suspect of Viking was charged with: Break and Enter, Theft under $5,000, Trespass at Night and Fail to Comply with a Probation Order.
An 18-year-old suspect of Viking, was charged with: Break and Enter, Theft under $5,000, Flight from peace officer, Trespass at Night, operating a  motor vehicle without registration, driving an uninsured motor vehicle on highway and operating a motor vehicle without holding subsisting operator’s licence.
Both males have been released from custody pending court dates in January and February in Vegreville Provincial Court.

Illegal pesticide sales stopped

By Murray Green

The United States Environmental Protection Agency issued a Stop Sale order to online marketplace, requiring the company to immediately halt sales of a dozen imported pesticide products not legal, or safe for sale in the United States.
Among the unregistered, illegal pesticides targeted by the order is Miraculous Insecticide Chalk, a common and particularly dangerous product because of its documented history of causing illness in children who mistake the chalk for regular sidewalk or black board chalk.
Ed Kowalski, the director of the enforcement and compliance division of EPA’s Region 10 office in Seattle said, “The proliferation of unregistered pesticides in the marketplace, particularly in the e-commerce environment, poses a significant and immediate health risk to consumers, children, pets and others exposed to the products in use or in transit.”
Here is the list of products targeted by the EPA’s Stop Sale order.
Cockroach Killing Bait Box Anti Pest Control Roach Magic, 30 pieces Miraculous Insecticide Chalk Cockroach Roaches Bug Pest Killer Magic Pen, 50 pieces Cockroach Killing Bait Cockroach Killer Roach Pest Control Insecticide, 100 pieces Cockroach Killing Bait Pest Control Powder Powerful Kill Particle Specif, Green Leaf Powder Killer Bait Cockroach Repeller, Pest Control Effective 50 pack, GreenLeaf Cockroach Killing Bait Powder 100 per cent Effective 50/100/200 pieces, 10 pieces Powerful Cockroach Killing Bait Roach Catcher Kitchen Household Pest Contr, six pieces Cockroaches Killer Cockroach Repellent Smoke Mosquitoes Fly Ants Home Pests, Maxforce FC Select Roach Killer Gel Bait 20g/230g plus Feeding 30 each Free Ship Track, Mole Poison Veleno Talpa. Killer Taupe-Pest Control, two pieces times 120 g and 240 g. No-nest Cockroach Eliminator Gel, Cockroach Pest Control Gel 35G Cockroach and Domestic Insects Killer Agromaxi.
Illegal distribution of Miraculous Insecticide Chalk and Green Leaf Cockroach Killing Bait Powder were the subject of EPA Stop Sale orders issued to Amazon in 2015 and 2016 and a subsequent $1.2 million penalty order against the company. The stop sale order is effective immediately upon receipt by Bonanza.

More agriculture research sought

By Murray Green

Engagement sessions and an online survey will be used to gather feedback about the future of agriculture research in Alberta.
“We are working with farmers to determine their research priorities. This is an opportunity to transform how we do research and attract investment from the private sector. I see world-leading agricultural research happening here, either by leveraging work happening in existing facilities or building brand new ones,” said Devin Dreeshen, AB Minister of Agriculture and Forestry.
There are six public engagement sessions throughout the province. The government will be seeking input on what farmer-led research means to Albertans, farmer-led research priorities and governance models for delivering farmer-led research.
Camrose has been named as one of those stops on Jan. 21 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. It will be held at the U of A Augustana Campus in the Roger Epp boardroom.
If you miss the session, you can participate in the online survey, which is open until Jan. 31.

Canadian Bull Congress about to kick up some dust at CRE

By Lori Larsen

The Camrose Regional Exhibition will be “showing the beef” again this year during the much anticipated Canadian Bull Congress being held Friday, Jan. 24 and Saturday, Jan. 25.
The best of the best will be on display and taking to the show ring for parading and judging. This is a wonderful opportunity for anyone to come out and see for yourself the dedication and hard work of some of the finest purebred breeders, commercial cattlemen and agricultural producers.
The two-day, not-for-profit event includes livestock and other agricultural vendors exhibiting products and available to provide information and speak about their services.
This Bull Congress is steeped in rich history of showcasing a vital part of Canada’s culture and economy and has been host to more than 7,500 visitors from all over Canada and internationally as well.
Aside from offering a two-day spectacular for breeders and other visitors, the Canadian Bull Congress promotes continued learning in the beef industry through both the 4-H judging seminar and the agricultural School Education Program offered to elementary students of Camrose and area schools, held Tuesday, Jan. 21 and Wednesday, Jan. 22.
The show winds up with a Taste of Beef Banquet on Saturday, Jan. 25 including a dinner, silent auction and entertainment.
Schedule of events
The School Education Program begins at 9:30 a.m. and runs until 2 p.m. on both Tuesday and Wednesday, Jan. 21 and 22, hosting elementary students from Camrose and area schools. The program includes informative sessions with lots of hands-on demonstrations that educate the students on the many aspects of the agricultural industry including: auctioneering, vet talk, farm and fire safety, cereals and oilseeds and milk production.
Thursday, Jan. 23 is Camrose County Move-In Day with registration from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. including the Canadian Bull Congress Sponsors’ and Exhibitors’ Social Drop-in sponsored by Camrose County from 6:30 until 9:30 p.m.
The show, which is open to public, gets underway on Friday, Jan. 24, at 9 a.m. The show begins at 11 a.m. featuring the Junior Heifer Show, Single Purebred Heifer Show, 4-H Heifer Project Show, Showmanship Class, Junior Bull Show and Marketing Award Presentation (Show Ring). The show closes at 6 p.m.
The Taste of Beef Banquet will begin shortly thereafter, featuring a delicious dinner and entertainment by none other than the hilarious stand-up comedian Lars Callieou.
Lars was named the funniest new comedian in Edmonton in 2004 when he won the Comedy Idol competition. First prize was a trip to Toronto where he competed again and was named the Funniest New Comedian in Alberta. Since then he has been featured on City TV, CBC Radio and on his own weekly comedy radio show on CJSR 88.5 FM in Edmonton, which he hosts Wednesdays at midnight.
The doors for the show will open again on Saturday, Jan. 25 at 9 a.m. with the show beginning at 11 a.m. featuring the Mature Bull Show, Senior Bull Show, Pen of Three Bull Show, Ranchers’ Choice Single Bull Show and the ever popular Bull-nanza. The show will end at 5 p.m.
The program is subject to change so for updates and more information visit the website at

Armed robber nabbed

By Lori Larsen

Bashaw RCMP have  charged a 40-year-old Ponoka man following an armed robbery that took place on Dec. 20 at the ATB Financial Agency in Alix.
On Dec. 20, at approximately 11:14 a.m. RCMP responded to a 9-1-1 call about an armed robbery,  noting the suspect fleeing the scene on a snowmobile.
The lone man entered the branch of the financial agency with a long barrelled firearm and a machete demanding cash.  Once he received an undisclosed amount of cash he fled the area. No employees were injured during the incident.
Upon investigation, RCMP determined the snowmobile was last known to be on Alix Lake.
On Dec. 23, a male who was in custody at the Ponoka RCMP detachment on an unrelated investigation, was identified as the suspect in the armed robbery.
On Dec. 24, the Bashaw RCMP, with the assistance of Ponoka RCMP general investigation section, obtained a search warrant for the suspect’s rural property, which is east of Ponoka. The search warrant was executed through the night into Dec. 25, 2019 by the Bashaw RCMP, with the assistance of members from Ponoka and Maskwacis detachments. Evidence linking the suspect to the armed robbery was collected.
The 40-year-old suspect was charged with 10 criminal offences in relation to the armed robbery including: robbery with a firearm, two counts of possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, possession of a firearm, while prohibited and two counts of fail to comply with a Probation Order.
At the time of his arrest, the suspect was wanted on outstanding warrants for other matters. He  was remanded into custody and appeared at Red Deer Provincial Court on Jan. 2.

Births and Deaths

- To Sarah Grove and Jeff Mutimer, of Killam, twin boys on December 27.
- To Jolene and Jason Szott, of Camrose, a daughter on December 31.
- To Chelcie Zimmer and Greg Dalueg, of Camrose, a son on January 2.
- To Lindsay and Justin Whalen, of Camrose, a daughter on January 3.

- Florence Edith Branson of Kingman, on January 3, at 83 years of age.
- Dennis Vernon Galenza of Bittern Lake, on January 4, at 77 years of age.
- Barbara Ann Law of Edmonton, on January 5, at 65 years of age.
- Bradley Umpherville of Camrose, on January 7, at 25 years of age.
- Bill Solverson of Camrose, on January 9, at 95 years of age.